take these with LARGE grain of salt: most companies have rules against altering the image of their characters as it relates to games. a character doesnt die, he expires or runs out of energy, not killed but vanquished. in the day there were pretty strict rules on what you could do with a character...so maybe having him disappear, frag, rez out falls into that category. only a guess. is there a large chasm (taking up a screen plus) toward the end of the game? possibly the character did fall off into the distance - but I do not recall exactly. the numbers (I think) could have been a visual marker for areas in the bonus levels... later removed. since there aren't real visual markers of your location in the maze, this might have been an early way to tell where you are within the maze. these are only guesses.