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Dragon's Lair full motion video for the ColecoVision


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#26 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 8, 2008 3:56 PM

A few more examples with optimized palette (usually greens removed, sometimes dark red also removed)

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#27 Albert OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 8, 2008 4:00 PM

I have to say, this is pretty damn cool! :)

Are there scenes in the game that would be difficult to play through due to the decreased color depth?

..Al

#28 Tursi OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 8, 2008 4:08 PM

For some other ideas how the 9918 can look in motion video, check out the two faked videos I did (9918 frames, 6 and 8 fps, but assembled into video on a PC):

(Lion King clips)
and
(White and Nerdy)

#29 ILA2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Dec 10, 2008 11:43 PM

Did'nt Coleco do Dragons Lair for the Adam, I think it came out for the Floppy drive for the Adam!

#30 Artlover OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 12:02 AM

Did'nt Coleco do Dragons Lair for the Adam

Yes, for the Adam. This is going to be for the Colecovision. BTW, have you seen the Adam version? A good remake is in order. :P

I think it came out for the Floppy drive for the Adam!

Floppy & cassette. There was a cart version in the works, but it was unreleased AFAIK.

Also, AFAIK, originally Coleco was going to release an expansion module to let you connect the Colecovision to a LD player so you could play the "real" game. That was also unrelased.

#31 Pixelboy ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 5:20 AM

Did'nt Coleco do Dragons Lair for the Adam

Yes, for the Adam. This is going to be for the Colecovision. BTW, have you seen the Adam version? A good remake is in order. :P

Now wait a minute, Eduardo never said he was going to actually convert the arcade game to the CV. This is only a theoretical discussion based on a "What-If" scenario.

Once the Opgrade Module is a reality, Eduardo may seriously consider doing it. Or he may not. Or course, if he decides to go ahead with the project, I will help him any way I can. :)

But for now, it's definately not an official project of Opcode Games. Just wanted to make this clear to everyone here.

#32 Bill Loguidice OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 8:53 AM

Did'nt Coleco do Dragons Lair for the Adam

Yes, for the Adam. This is going to be for the Colecovision. BTW, have you seen the Adam version? A good remake is in order. :P

Now wait a minute, Eduardo never said he was going to actually convert the arcade game to the CV. This is only a theoretical discussion based on a "What-If" scenario.

Once the Opgrade Module is a reality, Eduardo may seriously consider doing it. Or he may not. Or course, if he decides to go ahead with the project, I will help him any way I can. :)

But for now, it's definately not an official project of Opcode Games. Just wanted to make this clear to everyone here.



I'm going to be very honest here... While I am a huge supporter of probably 95% of all homebrew activities across ALL systems, I have to say that an FMV conversion of Dragon's Lair to the ColecoVision, while extremely cool, would serve no particular purpose, particularly with the reduced detail. Though my two cents was not requested, I think it would be cool instead to make a brief FMV intro or a small cut scene or two in other games, cartridge space permitting. That's where I think this proof of concept (though this is perhaps a bit less than that) would really shine and it would truly be something unique for a classic era system.

#33 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 2:39 PM

Did'nt Coleco do Dragons Lair for the Adam

Yes, for the Adam. This is going to be for the Colecovision. BTW, have you seen the Adam version? A good remake is in order. :P

Now wait a minute, Eduardo never said he was going to actually convert the arcade game to the CV. This is only a theoretical discussion based on a "What-If" scenario.

Once the Opgrade Module is a reality, Eduardo may seriously consider doing it. Or he may not. Or course, if he decides to go ahead with the project, I will help him any way I can. :)

But for now, it's definately not an official project of Opcode Games. Just wanted to make this clear to everyone here.



I'm going to be very honest here... While I am a huge supporter of probably 95% of all homebrew activities across ALL systems, I have to say that an FMV conversion of Dragon's Lair to the ColecoVision, while extremely cool, would serve no particular purpose, particularly with the reduced detail. Though my two cents was not requested, I think it would be cool instead to make a brief FMV intro or a small cut scene or two in other games, cartridge space permitting. That's where I think this proof of concept (though this is perhaps a bit less than that) would really shine and it would truly be something unique for a classic era system.


We are such a small group, all opinions are important. JFYI, My wife also thinks that the video looks like crap... :)
Personally I have never played Dragon's Lair, never liked FMV games and always heard that DL's gameplay is crap. But since I saw the game on TV when I was 13 or something, I still have a soft spot for it somehow...
Anyway the decision of porting the game would have more to do with how many weeks of work the port would require. I believe the video engine would be quite simple, however the arcade game also has 32KB of Z80 assembly code to control everything, and porting 32KB of arcade code is never an easy task.
My desire to port the game is solely based on the fact that DL was planned for the CV but never released, and the technical challenge, being a FMV game. I still believe the game would look and sound ok enough, and controls would be as good as the arcade version (which doesn't mean much).
So lets see. I need to check the arcade code first. If I was going to port 32KB, I would rather prefer to spend my time with Elevator Action or some other more traditional arcade game than DL. But supposing the code is very simple, the ROM is just a huge table of data, then I would give it a shot in the future.

#34 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 3:00 PM

Ok, after a quick check, it looks like the DLs ROM has 5~6KB of actual game code, and 19KB of data. I still have no idea what the data is for, but it seems that porting the game wouldn't be that difficult...

#35 Artlover OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 3:09 PM

Ok, after a quick check, it looks like the DLs ROM has 5~6KB of actual game code, and 19KB of data. I still have no idea what the data is for, but it seems that porting the game wouldn't be that difficult...

I'm purely guessing here. Maybe LD indexes?

#36 joyrex OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 3:19 PM

I would guess the same, LD indices and the patterns the user has to input with the controler.

#37 Pixelboy ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 3:43 PM

Ok, after a quick check, it looks like the DLs ROM has 5~6KB of actual game code, and 19KB of data. I still have no idea what the data is for, but it seems that porting the game wouldn't be that difficult...

LD indexes are probably rather useless. Seems to me like the game should be recoded from scratch, since it's so simple and since we would have full control over the video and audio data anyway. It would then be easier to optimize the software in order to diminish unwanted visual side-effects that may occur if VRAM is updated in mid-retrace.

The real challenge in all of this is to extract, clean up and re-encode the video frame by frame. Once this is done (and the audio samples are encoded as well) the software should practically write itself. :)

#38 Murph74 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 4:52 PM

Yeah, the indexes seem logical. There's not much going on in the game-- the timing of control inputs (not exactly action/reaction, but more if=then style response), relay to the LD player, and the scoring and output to the LCD counters. That pretty much sums it up I think.

As for the Colecovision and LD adapter, I don't think it was LD, if memory serves. I seem to recall it was actually a deal with RCA to use the CED discs. Similar, but significantly less advanced technology using a needle.

For that matter, how tough would it be to create that same style adapter for the Colecovision today? Just wondering how you'd implement it if you were in CV R&D in 1983 using today's resources. :) For me, at first glance I think I'd look at a simple adapter to allow the Colecovision to drive an "IR blaster" and actually put the info on a DVD. Effectively creating colecovision that functions as an IR remote control using the joystick and pretty much any DVD player. Should be pretty simple to get that part done. The trick would be how you might tie the CV in to be proprietary and not just use the DVD remote control? Maybe scramble the scene sequence and the CV has a table of where to go?

Just another rambling post... :)

And while i'm here, I'm also gonna say I'm happy to see whatever way this goes. Bill makes some good points--I could see FMV on the CV used as intro/break stuff. But still like the idea of a 'truer-to-arcade' Dragon's Lair experience on the ColecoVision!

Fell like I'm stuck in a soap opera now... Where will this story go? What happens next? Who will be behind it? Only time will tell. :) lol

#39 Artlover OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 6:35 PM

As for the Colecovision and LD adapter, I don't think it was LD, if memory serves. I seem to recall it was actually a deal with RCA to use the CED discs. Similar, but significantly less advanced technology using a needle.

So I've been digging around... There is a lot of conflicting information on the internet about this, even in the Colecovision faqs.

Coleco faqs (like this one) talk about the:

Expansion Module #3 (Super Game Module - wafer version) by Coleco.

&

Expansion Module #3 (Super Game Module - CED version) by Coleco.


No mention of an LD version.

But the very same faq also says:

"Dragon's Lair -

Right before the crash, Coleco had the rights to Dragon's Lair, and
was going to release an expansion unit to let you hook up an LD
player. The idea was the controller would be the ColecoVision, and
you could play Dragon's Lair in its entirety. - 16


And what was the Expansion Module #3 that was actually released: The Adam computer attachment.

:? :? :?

Coleco is confusing. :P

#40 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 7:04 PM

I checked the code a bit more and it is indeed rather simple: duration of the sequence, timers, required joystick input, next sequence(s), etc.
Anyway, pixelboy is right, I would need to re-write the whole code in order to accommodate the video player. So, again, if I decide to go with this project, I should start with the video and see how much free CPU time is left.
About the ColecoVision LD player, if we think about it, how much did a LD player cost back in 1983? Probably a lot, $1,000 or more. Doesn't sound like a viable videogame add-on to me...
And if I was going to connect the CV to a DVD player, I would use the serial interface present in some more advanced players.

#41 Artlover OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 7:14 PM

About the ColecoVision LD player, if we think about it, how much did a LD player cost back in 1983? Probably a lot, $1,000 or more. Doesn't sound like a viable videogame add-on to me...

Well, the CED wasn't a whole lot cheaper I don't think.

And don't forget, Atari was planing an LD interface for the 7800 during it's development in that same timeframe too.

#42 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 8:35 PM

I produced a new test gif, this time using the new color scheme. I believe video quality is much better now.
Again, video is 12 frames/s, respecting all the CV graphic limitations (actually I am using a BMP to TMS9918 convertor).

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  • dl5.gif


#43 Artlover OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 8:38 PM

:cool:

#44 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:29 PM

I think I could create a player during the holidays using a MegaCart. Video length would be limited to less than 10s, but it ok for testing purposes...

#45 Pixelboy ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:50 PM

I think I could create a player during the holidays using a MegaCart. Video length would be limited to less than 10s, but it ok for testing purposes...

Go for it, Eduardo! We need to see this running on BlueMSX, or better yet, a real CV! :D

Love your latest animated GIF, BTW. Did you have to touch up each frame manually a lot?

#46 Albert OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:20 PM

That latest GIF looks fantastic! :)

..Al

#47 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:26 PM

I think I could create a player during the holidays using a MegaCart. Video length would be limited to less than 10s, but it ok for testing purposes...

Go for it, Eduardo! We need to see this running on BlueMSX, or better yet, a real CV! :D

Love your latest animated GIF, BTW. Did you have to touch up each frame manually a lot?


No, I just removed the greens during encoding, except for the ones with the dragon. No manual touch up at all...

#48 STGuy1040 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 12, 2008 9:00 AM

I produced a new test gif, this time using the new color scheme. I believe video quality is much better now.
Again, video is 12 frames/s, respecting all the CV graphic limitations (actually I am using a BMP to TMS9918 convertor).



This looks much better!

#49 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 12, 2008 10:46 AM

Ok, I got a program that convert the original wmv file to bmp, then another program that converts bmp to TMS9918 graphics II. I now have all 1,041 frames of the 43s trailer already converted to BMP in 256x144. :D
So a player would be done using the existing frames. The problem is how I am going to extract the remaining movie. First I need to find a suitable version. I saw in the DL website that they have a HD version for the PC, in DVD. Maybe that would be the best option. The question, will I be able to extract the movie from the DVD the same way I extracted the trailer? :ponder:

#50 opcode ONLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 12, 2008 10:59 AM

Btw, there is another problem: I had said that the original movie was 12 frames/s. That isn't completely true. Most the time animation is indeed 12 frames/s, but during some segments it is 24 frames/s. So probably I would also need a tool to blend frames together.




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