The Apprentice Project

For the game page, go here. The Apprentice
Table of contents:
- General
- Installation
- Downloads
- Installation
- Controls
- Changelog


After having started almost 9 years ago in Excel, porting this to PHP, porting that once again to Director in Lingo, and finally porting everything to Unity in C# this game has come a long way! A more detailed recap can be found here.

The Apprentice remade for PC is the project of just me whose idea of a challenge is programming everything from scratch. No black boxes, no bug-free engines, no such thing of any kind. Stupid? Perhaps.. but it got me knowledge beyond what I thought I needed to make a game! Knowledge that should enable me to make another one if I ever finish this one.

Copyright issue
My version of The Apprentice requires an ISO of the original CD-i disc to run. It is needed because all the sprites, backgrounds, music, sound effects, and level layouts are stored there. None of them are aboard the game itself because that would be a copyright infringement. It is my way of trying to protect myself against those who hold the rights to the Apprentice.

Every asset I extract from the IMG file is kept in memory and so nothing is actually stored on the hard drive.


To get the game running you'll need the game files from this site and an IMG/ISO file of the CD-i disc of The Apprentice.
ISObuster, CloneCD, and similar software should be able to create one of these.
The image file must be placed in the same folder as the game for it to be recognized.
As of version v11.3d it is no longer important what the file is name or what the extension is: it is now recognized by its size.

How to create an image of the disc with ISOBuster
For this to work, you need at least version 11.3d! To check which version you have, see the change log for the date and compare it to the "Date Modified" of your version of "The Appprentice.exe".
ISOBuster is unable to make a single image file of the whole disc. This is because The Apprentice is a "CD-i Ready" disc.
But there is a way to get all the required data off your copy of the disc. It will result in a set of files with specific names that must not be altered.
Insert the disc of The Apprentice into your disc drive (CD/DVD/Blu-Ray) and start up ISOBuster.
The disc should automatically be read by ISOBuster and if you explore all folders on the disc you should see something like this:

Right click "CD", select the "Extract CD <content>" option, and then the "Extract RAW data (2352 bytes/block) (*.bin, *.iso)" option.

Choose a location to save the extracted files. The process will take a while; roughly 15 minutes. When it is done, open that location. The contents of the "Session 1" folder should be this:

Move the set of ISO files ("Track 00.iso" .. "Track 22.iso") to the same folder as the game. You should then have something like this:

It is important that the filenames are as mentioned, otherwise the game won't properly switch between reading the various ISO files!

How to create an image of the disc with CloneCD
CloneCD is not freeware! You have a 21 day trial so unless you've used this up, a purchase is required.
Insert the disc of The Apprentice into your disc drive (CD/DVD/Blu-Ray) and start up CloneCD.
Select the option "Read to Image file" as highlighted.

In this screen select "Data CD" and click "Next".

In this screen you can select the desination folder for the extracted disc image. To make things easier for yourself you could select the The Apprentice game folder as destination.
I placed mine in a folder of its own.

Click "OK" to start the process.

After some 5 minutes it's done. The CloneCD log should something like this:

In the destination folder you should find a bunch of files similar to this:

Copy the "IMAGE.img" file to the The Apprentice game folder:

If you have a version older than 11.3d, rename the "IMAGE.img" to "The_Apprentice.img", otherwise the game won't recognize the file!

Now just run "The Apprentice.exe" and you're all set to go!


The controls are fairly simple; the CD-i controllers had two or three buttons and a D-pad or thumb stick. And I'm keeping to that scheme, just translated to a keyboard.
The default controls are highlighted in blue. For full-screen use Alt-Enter as highlighted in red.

Re-assigning keys
Using the supplied "settings.ini" file it is possible to reassign the default keys. Only the righthand values (after the '=') should be changed.
For valid key values see "Unity Keys.txt". Any invalid values and keys are ignored. Deleting the ini file reverts the controls to the built-in default.
It is possible to re-assign them mid-game by pausing the game (ButtonThree), changing the ini file and continuing the game:
- Pause
- Change ini file
- Continue

You now have your new key assignments active!


v11.3d - December 23
  • Added support for the disc file to be named anything, including the file extension (as long as it is > 100MB).
  • Added support for the disc file to have an offset up to 100kB
  • Added support for the disc file to be incomplete (no CDA files). Downside is that the background music is unavailable.
  • Added support for the disc file to be scrambled
  • Added support for re-assigning keys via ini file
  • Added support for the disc file to be split into "Track 00", "Track 01" .. "Track 22" files
v11.3c - December 19
  • Initial public release