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Super Circus AtariAge (new WIP)


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#1 PacManPlus OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:51 AM

Hi Guys:

I'm currently working on a project lovingly called "Super Circus AtariAge", which (as you may have guessed) is a next step from Circus Atari on the 2600. Some of you may have seen an earlier version at the CGE.
Screenshots are below, but the clown graphics will change (they are just place holders for now). I have asked someone to work on Clown Graphics for this project. This is what I plan on having:

- Progressive mode (a'la Super Breakout)
- Dual player *simultaneous* mode
- Powerups that drop from broken balloons (a'la Arkanoid)
- A bonus item (in the shape of the AA logo) that will rarely come out.
- Possibly a bonus round of some sort

At the moment there are no sounds, aside from the catching of a caught powerup. Here are the powerups:
* 'D'rop - drops the balloons one level (although this can get very difficult very quickly)
* 'S'low - slows the speed of the balloons across the screen
* 'F'ast - increases the speed of the balloons across the screen
* 'R'everse - reverses the direction of the balloons
* 'T'op Line Gone - clears the top line. This will eventually give all the points for the remaining balloons on this line.
* 'M'iddle Line Gone - clears the middle line of balloons. This will eventually give all the points for the remaining balloons on this line.
* 'B'ottom Line Gone - clears the bottom line of balloons. This will eventually give all the points for the remaining balloons on this line.
* 'P'layer - awards the player with a bonus turn.

Any ideas to add / remove will be listened to.
Points:
Bounce = 1 point
Bottom row of balloons = 10 points
Middle row of balloons = 20 points
Top row of balloons = 30 points
Catching a powerup = 100 points

Also, and this is very important, the only two controllers supported will be the driving controller and the joystick (a choice). Paddles unfortunately cannot be supported with this type of setup on the 7800. :( Believe me, I wanted paddles really badly on this.
snapSUPERCIR_00.png
snapSUPERCIR_03.png
snapSUPERCIR_04.png
snapSUPERCIR_08.png
snapSUPERCIR_11.png

The joystick version is attached, please let me know what you think!

#2 TrekMD OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:54 AM

Very cool!

#3 The_Laird OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:59 AM

I love Circus so I am looking forward to this and I own driving controls :love:

#4 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:07 AM

Also, and this is very important, the only two controllers supported will be the driving controller and the joystick (a choice). Paddles unfortunately cannot be supported with this type of setup on the 7800. :( Believe me, I wanted paddles really badly on this.


There must be something obvious we've missed with paddles on the 7800. I'll investigate it further in the next week or two.

#5 Mayhem OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:15 AM

And here was me thinking this was a surprise GroovyBee production at CGE, inside it was PMP instead...! It had promise from the limited demo present there, although it was going a mite fast already heh...

#6 Marc Oberhäuser OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:37 AM

Great!

#7 AtariLeaf ONLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:50 AM

This is freaking awesome. My favorite 2600 game ported to the 7800 :lust:

MUST. . . OWN. . .THIS. . . CART

#8 Bakasama OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:59 AM

Not able to use paddles? I do recall that paddles need a pokey to be able to work in 7800 mode. Are you going to keep the splat sound from the 2600 version.

#9 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 7:23 AM

Not able to use paddles? I do recall that paddles need a pokey to be able to work in 7800 mode.


The issue occurs because the reading indicating the paddle position has jitter. I tried eliminating the software jitter with obvious WSYNCs but its going to require looking at on a scope to get to the bottom of it.

#10 NE146 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:00 AM

How about adding the small platforms on the side that they can bounce off of when they hit it like in the arcade game? Or maybe not..

#11 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:24 AM

Re: Paddles.

If it turns out that the stock hardware cannot do Paddles, maybe either a paddle controller mod (insert cap on unused pin), or some kind of adapter can be made.

Publish the circuit, and let people either build it or not. Would be damn cool for a detect to occur, when the player picks paddle mode. If it doesn't see the paddle, or a stock paddle is connected, display the circuit needed, and a URL, where more instructions can be found.

Paddle games are my absolute favorite.

Edited by potatohead, Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:25 AM.


#12 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:33 AM

If it turns out that the stock hardware cannot do Paddles, maybe either a paddle controller mod (insert cap on unused pin), or some kind of adapter can be made.


Paddles are fine in 2600 mode so its definitely a software/timing issue of some kind.

#13 Rex Dart OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 9:12 AM

I've never much liked clowns, so I love Circus Atari.. and this looks awesome. The only suggestion I could make would be to add a bit of gore, or an option to enable gorier graphics. Nothing gruesome, just a bigger splat when you miss a clown.

And having never owned a driving controller since I'm fairly new to the older Ataris, aren't they digital-only? Just curious, because I'm sure you could smooth out the movement in software... they have several positions internally, yes?

Anyways, keep up the awesome work. This looks like it'll be another 21st century 7800 classic.

#14 NE146 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 9:26 AM

Aha here's a vid of what looks like the actual arcade unit (as opposed to MAME) that shows the bouncing off the sides that I was talking about happening at around 1:03.

Anyway, just a thought. No biggie either way :)


Edited by NE146, Tue Aug 10, 2010 9:27 AM.


#15 gambler172 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 12:46 PM

Hi Bob
I always loved CIRCUS on the 2600.Glad to see a better version on my beloved 7800 :lust:
greetings Walter

#16 BigO OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 12:50 PM

I've never much liked clowns, so I love Circus Atari.. and this looks awesome. The only suggestion I could make would be to add a bit of gore, or an option to enable gorier graphics.

A two player mode with the 2nd player shooting at the moving clown? Lots of people hate clowns. :)

I'm really not much into the 7800, but I would buy this and dig out a 7800 to play it. Posted Image
(I mean the normal version, not the Klown Killer version)

I'd build a controller to play it if necessary, but I have faith in GroovyBee's technical skills.

Edited by BigO, Tue Aug 10, 2010 12:53 PM.


#17 BigO OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 1:58 PM

Regarding Power-ups:

Not sure how workable it would be but it seems interesting to me to use 'G'ravity to alter (increase or decrease) gravity temporarily.

Edited by BigO, Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:18 PM.


#18 AtariLeaf ONLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:05 PM

What's a good 7800 emulator to try this on?

I'm using the Prosystem Emulator. Seems to work well.

#19 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:06 PM

What's a good 7800 emulator to try this on?


For Windows use ProSystem. If you search the forum you'll be able to find 1.3e.

#20 AtariNerd OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:52 PM

The core base games that launched the 2600 system in it's infancy have always made some of the most compelling examples for reinvisioning. It seems only natural for the 7800 to be a primary playground.

#21 VectorGamer OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:33 PM

Also, and this is very important, the only two controllers supported will be the driving controller and the joystick (a choice). Paddles unfortunately cannot be supported with this type of setup on the 7800. :( Believe me, I wanted paddles really badly on this.
snapSUPERCIR_00.png
snapSUPERCIR_03.png
snapSUPERCIR_04.png
snapSUPERCIR_08.png
snapSUPERCIR_11.png

The joystick version is attached, please let me know what you think!


I would think the driving controller would be the way to go then, right? Otherwise, has the speed of the game been slowed down to accommodate a joystick?

#22 Atari Joe OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:36 PM

OH MY GOD IVE WAITED MY WHOLE LIFE FOR THIS!

Another CIRCUS ATARI I just can't believe it!! THank you so much for making this!

#23 Greg2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:08 PM

Bob, you are the man. As for the game, I tried MESS and Pro System 1.3e, and seems like the see-saw gets stuck a lot when I go to move side to side.

PS: Pro System 1.3e is here

#24 DracIsBack OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:33 PM

Any Cuttle Cart friendly builds for those of us who want to try on the real thing? :-)

#25 PacManPlus OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 10, 2010 7:26 PM

Thanks guys!

Ok, from the comments posted above, here's what I plan on doing:
- Remove the 'Drop' powerup; it makes the game too hard (Progressive mode go bye-bye)
- Add a powerup to increase the speed of the *player* (as close as I can get to the 'Gravity' thing) Heavier gravity, faster speed... sort of
- Add second set of platforms (like the arcade)
- More sampling of the driving controllers (to get the speed up)

I am going to use Pokey for the sounds (which is why I haven't implemented any yet).

BTW, did you know that the original Circus Atari used Vertical Position Tables (i.e. not calculated) for the vertical motion of the clown? I stole those exact tables and modified the first one (where you don't hit any balloons) only.

Re: the paddles - the problem is the fact that we cannot measure the cap discharge accurately (i.e. by raster line) like the 2600 does. For this game (as an example), I have a DLI every 16 raster lines so the paddle discharge can only get checked 12 times; nowhere near enough to get an accurate reading. :( I need those 16 lines for the balloons.

Re: clown graphic gore - I have asked espire8 for the clown graphics - let's see what he comes up with ;)

@Greg2600: What do you mean by 'stuck'? It seems to work for me ok... I'll post a Driving Controller binary soon.

Thanks Guys!
Bob




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