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Intellivision Homebrew: Istar (WIP)


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#1 catsfolly OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Dec 8, 2010 9:01 AM

WooHoo! I finally got something on the Intellivision to a playable state!

As far as I can tell, this game started out as a set of programs called DSTAR for the TI graphical calculators by Joe Wingbermuehle and Andrew Von Dollen (there is also a version for the HP calculators - I'm not sure which came first...)

Since then, there have been several other versions. Last month, Stefano Bodrato made a version for the Jupiter Ace computer, and I saw a video of that version on youtube. This was the first time I had seen the game.



Since the game is based on 16 by 9 grid and has few moving objects, it seemed like a good fit for a quick Intellivision conversion. So, I made a copy of "Tag Along Todd" and started hacking away at it to turn it into DSTAR. Unfortunately, I kept adding features to the program, so it took much longer than I had hoped. But now I've about run out of GRAM, so I guess it must be done. :)

I would appreciate any feedback anyone has. I would especially like to know if it runs on a real Intellivision, since I have no way of testing that at this time.

If you press 9 on the keypad while playing the game, you can switch to an editor. You can edit your own level and test it out. Unfortunately there is no way to save your level. But, if you make a cool level and send me a screenshot (or a dump of scratchram), and (if I like the level and have the space,) I can add it into the game...

Currently, there are 25 "classic" levels (from the ti-83 calculator version) and 11 new levels that I have made.

I recently discovered that Atariage has a 2600 version of this game called "Astar", so I am calling my version "Istar". (Hopefully Apple hasn't reserved that name for something...)


Thanks for checking it out...

David

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Attached File  istar.rom.bin   12.06KB   259 downloads

#2 Rev OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Dec 14, 2010 7:24 PM

Looks interesting. look forward to updates.

#3 catsfolly OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 17, 2010 9:02 AM

Thanks.

I'm not planning any major changes at this point - just adding more levels and bug fixes. I might add some kind of rating so people have an idea how their move count compares to other people's move count. That's about it.

#4 maximebeauvais OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 17, 2010 7:37 PM

nice :)

#5 Rev OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:28 PM

Thanks.

I'm not planning any major changes at this point - just adding more levels and bug fixes. I might add some kind of rating so people have an idea how their move count compares to other people's move count. That's about it.


Are you planning on some kind of cart release?

#6 Godzilla OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Dec 21, 2010 3:21 PM

i love these kinds of games, if this ever gets the cart treatment, put me down for one

#7 Rev OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jun 30, 2012 11:37 PM

Any update? Is this still being planned at all Catsfolly?

#8 catsfolly OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 9:34 AM

Any update? Is this still being planned at all Catsfolly?


I haven't done anything with it lately (except steal the "rocket engine" sound effect for "Tennis in Space").

1. The game started as a calculator game, that was given away for free by its designers. But I would want their permission before releasing a cart version that is sold for a profit (especially since I am using their level designs for the first 25 levels). I have no idea if they would be okay with this, or if they would say no, or if they would want ridiculous licensing fees, or whatever. I haven't tried to contact them yet...

2. Also, I was hoping that some people (like yourself or other Atariage members) would try out the built in editor and create some new levels. If someone sends me a screenshot of a level, I can put it into the game.

The levels are pretty small in memory size. The current code has two digits to display the level number - so it could handle 99 levels - but I could change that if we had more levels.

This is a chance to design at least part of an Intellivision game. No assembly language is required.

(I guess I should make a "create a level for ISTAR" tutorial thread....)

Anyway those are my thoughts. I am currently pretty busy with "Paddle Party".

Catsfolly

#9 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 9:52 AM

1. The game started as a calculator game, that was given away for free by its designers. But I would want their permission before releasing a cart version that is sold for a profit (especially since I am using their level designs for the first 25 levels). I have no idea if they would be okay with this, or if they would say no, or if they would want ridiculous licensing fees, or whatever. I haven't tried to contact them yet...


There is also a version in the Z88 development kit here :-

http://www.z88dk.org...amples:projects

2. Also, I was hoping that some people (like yourself or other Atariage members) would try out the built in editor and create some new levels. If someone sends me a screenshot of a level, I can put it into the game.


How about creating an editor that works on the PC and injects the new levels directly into the game's binary so that you can try them out in the emulator or on CC3?

#10 catsfolly OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 10:25 AM

There is also a version in the Z88 development kit here :-

http://www.z88dk.org...amples:projects



Yeah, I found that after I had written the Intellivision version. I spent a couple hours hacking the Aquarius version to have better graphics (or at least more colorful graphics) but I never got back to it after that.


How about creating an editor that works on the PC and injects the new levels directly into the game's binary so that you can try them out in the emulator or on CC3?

With the current editor, you can change the level in the emulator (or cc3) and immediately try out the changes. It is fully interactive. You just can't save the level (except as a screenshot or memory dump on the emulator...).

#11 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 10:29 AM

With the current editor, you can change the level in the emulator (or cc3) and immediately try out the changes. It is fully interactive. You just can't save the level (except as a screenshot or memory dump on the emulator...).


I was just thinking ease of use. If it saved files on the PC you can go back to them later or give them other people to try out too. That way you wouldn't get a ton of requests for game updates.

#12 catsfolly OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 10:46 AM

With the current editor, you can change the level in the emulator (or cc3) and immediately try out the changes. It is fully interactive. You just can't save the level (except as a screenshot or memory dump on the emulator...).


I was just thinking ease of use. If it saved files on the PC you can go back to them later or give them other people to try out too. That way you wouldn't get a ton of requests for game updates.

After two years, no one has made a level, so I'm not too worried about getting "a ton of requests for game updates" at this time ;-)

But, the PC editor sounds like a good approach. I could assigned a fixed block of memory for user levels, and the editor could write to that block in the .rom program files.

Maybe someday,

Catsfolly

#13 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 10:57 AM

After two years, no one has made a level, so I'm not too worried about getting "a ton of requests for game updates" at this time ;-)


2 years! Hmmmm..... How about having a level design contest and then choose a selection with the "winners" getting their names in the manual as an incentive to enter? Or maybe something else if you aren't going down the CIB route. You might get some takers then.

But, the PC editor sounds like a good approach. I could assigned a fixed block of memory for user levels, and the editor could write to that block in the .rom program files.


Sounds good.

#14 catsfolly OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012 5:14 PM

After two years, no one has made a level, so I'm not too worried about getting "a ton of requests for game updates" at this time ;-)


2 years! Hmmmm..... How about having a level design contest and then choose a selection with the "winners" getting their names in the manual as an incentive to enter? Or maybe something else if you aren't going down the CIB route. You might get some takers then.


My math wasn't so good last night. The game was released in December 2010, so I guess it has only been out 18 months, not 2 years.
Maybe I'll make a tutorial thread and show people how easy it is to make a level. A contest sounds good too.




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