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Intel x86 ASM Codegolf

Write an Intel x86 assembly program that -- when compiled with the
provided Makefile -- returns an ASCII compass.

The goal is to minimize the binary size.

Expected output

The template for the output is provided in compass.txt. The program is passed
a digit (ASCII) between 0 and 7. The numbers stand for directions:

  • 0: North
  • 1: Northeast
  • 2: East
  • 3: Southeast
  • 4: South
  • 5: Southwest
  • 6: West
  • 7: Northwest

The expected output for all those directions can be found in expected.txt.


$ ./main 3
  /   \
W|  .  |E
 |   \ |
  \_ _/


  • The code needs to be written in 32 bit Intel (x86) assembly (NASM syntax).
  • No library calls are allowed, use syscalls instead


Build the binary using Make.

$ make
nasm -f elf32 -O0 main.s
ld -m elf_i386 -s -O0 -o main main.o

Run the test script with Python 2:

$ python
Binary size is 460 bytes.


If you want a binary with debug symbols included, use the debug Make target:

$ make debug
nasm -f elf32 -g -O0 main.s
ld -m elf_i386 -O0 -o debug main.o
$ gdb ./debug
(gdb) ...


You can also verify the code within an isolated
Docker instance.

$ docker build -t dbrgn/codegolf .
$ export SRC=/path/to/source/dir
$ export FILE=filename.s
$ docker run --rm \
  -v $SRC:/code \
  -u compass -w /home/compass/codegolf \
  dbrgn/codegolf \
  /bin/bash -c "cp /code/$FILE main.s && make && python"
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