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2600 3D Rubik's Cube Discovered!


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#1 Albert OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 9:54 AM

http://www.pong-stor...ubikscube3D.htmMuch to our amazement, David Winter has discovered and posted information about a 3D prototype of the Atari game Rubik's Cube! This is indeed a real 3D version of the game, as opposed to the 2D version that Atari shipped. This version of the game even includes a solve option, and will also allow you to change the colors of individual tiles. For screenshots and a more detailed description, please visit David's PONG-Story site.

#2 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:16 AM

Wow!

Though I'm already wondering how they programmed that. :ponder:
It does look like simple PF graphics, but I think they use the players instead.

Will the dump be made public?

#3 Curt Vendel OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:18 AM

Okay, now you really have to ask why the heck wasn't THIS version the one that was completed and out the door, that is impressive looking, is David going to release the BINary image for everyone to try out???



Curt

#4 Albert OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:24 AM

Wow!


Yes, that was my reaction also!!

Though I'm already wondering how they programmed that. :ponder:  
It does look like simple PF graphics, but I think they use the players instead.



No idea, although it sure does look like PF graphics. :) We may have to wait until David releases a dump before we can know for sure.

Will the dump be made public?


In his email to us, David said that he might release the binary in the future, but that it would not be available now.

..Al

#5 Voch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:25 AM

Very nifty indeed. Is this reportedly an Atari-branded prototype?

EDIT: Whoops. Saw the © 1982 Atari on the screen. Nevermind.

Voch

#6 sku_u OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:26 AM

Maybe the finished version would have been too large for the cart space available at the time? Just a thought.

#7 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:27 AM

From r.g.v.c:

PLEASE DO NOT ASK FOR ROM DUMPS...

:sad:

...as I will eventually do a cartridge sometime in the future IF there is enough interest in it.

:)

#8 Nukey Shay OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:30 AM

Perhaps Atari had both versions of Rubik's Cube being developed at the same time, and decided to go with the Video Cube version when licensing fell through? They might have faced litigation with this version without Rubik's copyright. :?

#9 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:31 AM

No idea, although it sure does look like PF graphics.

Yes, but the different colors in one line are not possible with the playfield only. Except they are changing the background too. Hm...

#10 DEBRO OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:32 AM

Wow!

Though I'm already wondering how they programmed that. :ponder:  
It does look like simple PF graphics, but I think they use the players instead.


It does look amazing :!:

If they used PF graphics how did they get all those colors on one scan line? If they used player graphics, how many players per scan line? And what about the different colors? How is that possible with the players and PF graphics? The 6 digit display routine doesn't leave any time left to do anything else, right? I guess it could be self modifing code :? but that would use your 128 bytes of RAM :? :? :ponder: :?

Interesting

#11 King Atari OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:36 AM

What an amazing game. Too bad it was never released, it would've fit well into the red label category.

#12 Inky OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:41 AM

!!!
:!: :!: :!:
:o :o :o

That is some amazing stuff!!

Could a REAL version of Zaxxon been attempted with those graphics?

#13 Tempest ONLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:50 AM

Wow! Just when you think you've seen everything...

Was this found with a lab label or just EPROMs? Do we know who the programmers might be? Where did he find it?

This leads me to a very interesting theory. Suppose that this was going to be the true Rubik's Cube cart and not the relabeled Auto Video Cube? The copyright date is right. I can't see why Atari wouldn't release it.

Tempest

#14 Nukey Shay OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 10:54 AM

...besides having to pay for the name. That's what I figure.

Though the cart itself might be using some kind of hardware? What size is the chip?

#15 StanJr OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:03 AM

WOW! So is this thing completed or is it an unfinished proto?

And here is hoping that this baby is finished and makes it to a cart at an AA Store near you! I mean, cool. 8) 8) 8)

#16 Nukey Shay OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:19 AM

From the sound of that page, I gather that it is uncompleted...with key user interface elements missing. Though the "solve" function was a nice touch (I wonder if it uses the James Norse solutions?).

One can only hope that at least the kernal is disassembled for study.
* optimism

#17 MattyXB OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:22 AM

Wow, great find. :)

I like too see more in the future from that game. :D

#18 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:28 AM

If they used PF graphics how did they get all those colors on one scan line? If they used player graphics, how many players per scan line? And what about the different colors? How is that possible with the players and PF graphics?

I think they must have mixed PF and player graphics and colors. E.g. you can't change a color register exactly in the middle of the screen (except by using the SCORE colormode of CTRLPF).

The 6 digit display routine doesn't leave any time left to do anything else, right?

The 6 digit routine won't help here very much, because the problem is not to have many different shapes but the number (up to 8 in the lower part!) of different colors.

#19 Curt Vendel OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:32 AM

...besides having to pay for the name.  That's what I figure.

Though the cart itself might be using some kind of hardware?  What size is the chip?


Given all the data involved in the game, it may have required a SARA. Games like 2600 Millipede and Crystal Castles used the SARA chip.

Curt

#20 Nukey Shay OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:44 AM

There's not really a whole lot of data to be manipulated by the cube game itself (since it's been done on a 1k Timex). Using Norse-like solutions would only eat up a page of ROM memory. Ram for the individual sides' matrix data would eat up 54 bytes (6sides X 9squares)...half that amount if nybbles were used. The main thing is the hardware limitations to the display. Would the Sara chip help in that regard? i.e. is Sara capable of displaying 8 colors per scanline?

#21 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 11:46 AM

If z26 recognizes it automatically, then it should have no extra RAM.

BTW: Do we have any evidence that this is not another "Airworld fake"?

I don't think (yet) the graphics are impossibe for the 2600, but I wonder why nobody ever heared about it. :ponder:

And if the screenshots are made with z26, where does the dithering in the first shot come from :?:

And has anybody checked, if the patterns are possible with a real Rubik's Cube :?:

#22 raindog OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 12:13 PM

Looking at the screenshots, it seems there are places where there are EIGHT color changes on the same scanline (nine, including back to the black background.)

I don't think six would really be all that tough, though till I try coding it I wouldn't know: make both players a different color and the playfield is the third, mirror the playfield and have it be the outer cubes so you have time to change its color, and set up the two players to repeat once and you should have enough time to change their colors since you don't need to reposition them on each scanline. But those diagonal lines kinda shoot my theory down and point to self-modifying code which I wouldn't think you'd have time for without extra RAM in what appears to be a single-line kernel.

Rob

#23 Cupcakus OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 12:14 PM

As I posted to the Stella list, I have a strange inkling this is a fake... The color variations seem impossible... and once again, we have someone else unwilling to release the ROM.

If the ROM would only be released to a reputable source, like Al or Thomas or Tempest and they could verify it's authenticity I would feel a lot better :-)

We know a ROM exists, because those screen shots are obviously taken from an EMU, and he even states, he played it in Z26. So just fork up the binary to one person if you don't want it public :-) that would curb the doubt in my mind.

If it is legit, lets not forget that Atari used flicker dilligently. Something a lot of you are trying to forget :-) most of the above solutions are solutions without flicker, if they gave each color one frame, it would have so much flicker it may be unplayable, but the design would work then.

#24 Nukey Shay OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 12:21 PM

Could you grab a snapshot like those above using that method? Interlacing?

#25 rasty OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 23, 2002 12:30 PM

Could you grab a snapshot like those above using that method?  Interlacing?


Of course not, unless you composite the image! something that theorethically could have been done in this case, since there is already editing evidence in image #3 that's made into an animated gif with the blinking selection..

Could it be possible to know whether David overlaid 2 or more screenshots to obtain the final ones?

Also, can anyone with a better english understanding than me explain the description to the last image?

... and here's the amazing solve option. On my 2600, the game would automatically rotate the cube so as to finish the game. Under Z26, that was manually done (??), yet I don't recall how I got the automatic solve to work. That could be an A/B option, so gimme some time to dig my 2600 out of my attic and I'll give you more infos.


An automatic solve that's done manually?
That's not very clear (to me)! :?

There are also other pieces of the text from the descriptions that don't make too much sense to me, but again, maybe it's just my english :ponder:

Rasty.-




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