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Tutankham for the TI-99/4A


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#1 retroclouds ONLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 9:42 AM

Here is the first early prototype of my homebrew version of Tutankham.

It's a remake of the colecovision game that will be enhanced with title screen, theme music and speech (when using TI's speech synthesizer).
This game is 100% pure TMS9900 assembly language, only using the 256 bytes scratch-pad memory and designed as cartridge ROM image from day 1.

The idea is to release this game as cartridge with instruction manual and cardboard box in early 2011.
Note that my homebrew version is not related to the ultra-rare-only-1-to-find-prototype mentioned at the Videogame House.

Here's a YouTube video of the v0.1 prototype:


Version 0.2 (05-25-2010)
* Teleporters are working
* Level 2 maze in place
* "white-flash" working (press fire button or space bar to engage)
* Movement is a bit smoother, and resembles colecovision version more closely
* Bug-fix: you can't walk through walls anymore

Version 0.1 (04-04-2010)
* Initial version

EDIT:
I've decided I won't be releasing any ROM images of WIP versions anymore.
There will be a BETA phase for a closed group of people before the cartridge comes out.
I might release the final ROM to the cartridge buyers and release to the public domain at
a later stage. But that isn't confirmed yet.

#2 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 9:54 AM

Awesome!!!!!!!

#3 sometimes99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 10:41 AM

Very nice ! :)

#4 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 10:41 AM

Holy crap!!!!!!!!!!!!! Un-freaking-believable!!!! I am amazed, Filip!

#5 Rev ONLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 10:56 AM

nice, now how about putting it on a disc or cart!

#6 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 11:02 AM

He said--- 2011, full cart release. :)

#7 save2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 12:29 PM

Put me down for one please, Retroclouds!

#8 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 4, 2010 12:40 PM

Of course--- I will be wanting a copy as well. :) Hope I can get on the early list too. :) Brilliant stuff mate!

#9 Draugr OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 5, 2010 6:02 PM

Nice work. Can't wait to 2011 so I can purchase a copy. :)

#10 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 5, 2010 6:29 PM

I didn't think I could be more excited about a homebrew cartridge than I was with Pitfall, but this one takes the cake. I've been playing just about every version of this game I can find. Even tried to buy a coin-op version. :) Filip is a freakin monster. I am very excited about this new release.

#11 PingvinBlueJeans OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 5, 2010 6:51 PM

Note that my homebrew version is not related to the ultra-rare-only-1-to-find-prototype mentioned at the Videogame House.

The irony is that this one will probably end up being very close to that prototype version, which the programmer didn't want released for some bizarre reason. Hopefully, this one's even better.

#12 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 5, 2010 6:58 PM

Well, the guy never released it because it was under license from Parker Brothers. They shut down production of /4a games, so the guy kept his source and his handful of prototypes since PB abandoned it's production. He sold one for a significant amount of money to our resident TI cart guru. Anyway, I've contacted this fellow to see if he has more carts. Sad thing is---with Retroclouds's new game coming out, this guy has really no chance of selling more carts. Whatever... Filip's will be much better.

#13 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 5, 2010 7:14 PM

I just find it strange the guy doesn't want to release it. It really was PB's intellectual property; he was an employee of PB when it was made. Did the author even have the legal right to impose restrictions on Toucan so that he couldn't release it?

Nevertheless, Retroclouds will do a kick butt re-release :-) See what happens when you hoard something, Steven? :-)

FYI, here was his note to me back in December 2008:

--------
Steven Zedeck to me 12/22/08
Hi Jon,
Yes, I did sell one of my Tut boards to Brian about a year ago. Under contract he is unable to duplicate or sell it. I still have a couple more but they can not be given away. Sorry.
Steve
--------

#14 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 5:24 AM

I actually wrote him--- hoping to hear back in the availability of the remaining carts. With Filip's new game forthcoming, I'm testing the waters to see if this fella is still wanting 5 million dollars a cart or whatever the number was...

#15 PingvinBlueJeans OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 8:49 AM

Well, the guy never released it because it was under license from Parker Brothers. They shut down production of /4a games, so the guy kept his source and his handful of prototypes since PB abandoned it's production.

Yeah, I undertstand that...but the guy could've released it if he wanted to, or he could've allowed someone else to. Who is he worried about coming after him? Konami? Parker Brothers? PB sold the rights to all of their games to Atari. Regardless...when has a homebrew or prototype release ever been halted by the company who 'owned' the rights to it?

He sold one for a significant amount of money to our resident TI cart guru. Anyway, I've contacted this fellow to see if he has more carts. Sad thing is---with Retroclouds's new game coming out, this guy has really no chance of selling more carts. Whatever... Filip's will be much better.

That's his problem...and he already made a good chunk of change on the copy he sold to Toucan from what I understand. Since this game could've been ported over from the ColecoVision without much difficulty, someone was bound to do this eventually. Watch S. Zedeck come forward now and try to claim that the homebrew author ripped off his version. :lol: :roll:

I just find it strange the guy doesn't want to release it. It really was PB's intellectual property; he was an employee of PB when it was made. Did the author even have the legal right to impose restrictions on Toucan so that he couldn't release it?

No, I hardly think he has the power (or the desire) to legally enforce whatever "contract" he signed with Toucan, but that's not really the point. Silly as it may be, Toucan has an obligation to honor whatever deal he made with the guy, even if it was just a handshake deal. Burning bridges with people is not a smart practice.

#16 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 10:20 AM

Whatever happens on those lines (with Zedeck) I know that we will get to enjoy Tutankham on the /4a. :)

#17 save2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 10:25 AM

Politics, hyperbole and conjecture aside, I'm with Opry99er. I believe this version of Tutankham has the potential to be a superior product to the original anyway :) And *that's* the bottom line when it comes to playing the actual games.

I just pray that the screen scrolls smoothly :P

Edited by save2600, Tue Apr 6, 2010 10:28 AM.


#18 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 11:19 AM

Watch the video above... scrolling looks good! =)

#19 save2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 11:26 AM

Yeah, the scrolling in the vid looks pretty good, though the character sure seems jumpy. But since this is so early still, I wouldn't judge either yet. Dude's jumpiness might get straightened out and by the time you add all the prizes and enemies, scrolling might take a hit :(

In any event - it looks awesome! Much better than what I could do. Yay for TMS9900! What a great a system.

#20 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 12:11 PM

Just heard back from Zedeck. He said his remaining prototypes are not for sale. Guess that answers it.

#21 retroclouds ONLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 12:45 PM

Don't worry about the scrolling guys, it will be as good as the colecovision version ;)
In this early prototype I just do a basic dumping of the screen while it is being displayed.
There are smarter ways to do this, but first want to have some more functionality in place before I get into the optimisations.

The sprite is moving 1px at a time and should be smooth. The video was recorded in MESS. I then took the uncompressed AVI and converted it using DIVX converter before uploading to Youtube.
I guess some frames are skipped. Just give the binary in the zip file a try ;)

As far as the original TI prototype is concerned, I prefer to stay out of that discussion :P
In the end each version will have its pros/cons.

What I can tell is that Brian gave me a valuable hint on how to deal with the joystick handling, so am happy about that.

#22 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 1:40 PM

Well I am super pleased to see the new Tut version in the works. I know it will be quite different from the original prototype, and that is good, I think. Whatever happens, I'll have a retroclouds version on cart and in my collection by next year. :) That makes me happy. And to Bryan's one-of-a-kind Tut cart, "you're a lucky man to have something so rare." :)

#23 ti99iuc OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 4:13 PM

WOW !!!!... the pitfall!'s manual is finished by now... and now ? i must try to do this manual too? ;-)... great !!! :-D

Edited by ti99userclub, Tue Apr 6, 2010 4:30 PM.


#24 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 5:30 PM

I just find it strange the guy doesn't want to release it. It really was PB's intellectual property; he was an employee of PB when it was made. Did the author even have the legal right to impose restrictions on Toucan so that he couldn't release it?

No, I hardly think he has the power (or the desire) to legally enforce whatever "contract" he signed with Toucan, but that's not really the point. Silly as it may be, Toucan has an obligation to honor whatever deal he made with the guy, even if it was just a handshake deal. Burning bridges with people is not a smart practice.


I agree. It's an agreement between two parties, and I don't want to see Toucan break his word. I think my point is that I just find it strange that this person is putting such strange controls around IP that doesn't even technically belong to him. I bet Hasbro doesn't even care at this point, nor does Atari (the owner of the PB IP).

#25 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 6, 2010 5:54 PM

I agree with acadiel. Toucan is honorable and will stick by his word as long as the restriction applies. I bet Zedeck wouldn't care to enforce this thing... If he were asked to allow the game to be released, I bet now (4 years later) he would just say "screw it." But whatever... :) Things are what they are.




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