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#1 cdoty OFFLINE  

cdoty

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Posted Sat Oct 8, 2011 11:59 PM

Anyone checked out the MSX tools for graphics?

Here's two decent ones I've found:

Polka:
http://www.msx.org/m...q=visit&lid=554

This allows you to make pattern, palette, and color data for a tile map editor. This creates tiles for graphics mode 2.

VScreen Level Editor:
http://abyssmsx.com/vscreen-editor.htm

This is a tilemap editor. This can use the raw output of Polka to build tilemaps.The tilemap exported is based on the dimensions of the tilemap. For example, a 1x1 tilemap (1 screen wide and tall) is exported to 768 bytes.

There is some work that needs to be done. The raw output of Polka has to be combined. In Windows you could use:
copy /b Tiles.pal+Tiles.pat+Tiles.col Tiles.sc4

It wouldn't be hard to make a simple program to write the 32 bytes of the palette, the 2048 bytes of the pattern and the 2048 bytes of the color map to a single file.

VScreen can also store additional information, such as sprite positions. I haven't looked into extracting this information. The formats are documented, and available on the VScreen manual page:

http://abyssmsx.com/vscreen-doc.htm

The sprite stuff is useless, as it uses sprite mode 2 of the V9938.

Edited by cdoty, Sun Oct 9, 2011 12:14 AM.


#2 cdoty OFFLINE  

cdoty

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Posted Sun Oct 9, 2011 1:38 AM

Here's a quick utility I threw together to convert an SC4 (screen mode 2/4 graphics file) to a PPR file, which can be loaded in Polka. I tested it with the sc4 file included with VScreen editor.

http://http:\\www.rastersoft.net\SC4ToPPR.zip

#3 cdoty OFFLINE  

cdoty

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Posted Sun Oct 9, 2011 6:51 AM

I've created a tool to convert from Polka's PPR to a pattern and color table for Graphics mode two. I've also include an assembly example that uses the data, along with the stg file exported from the VScreen editor. Mode 2 is setup to share the pattern and color table between each of the screen areas.

Posted Image

It can be downloaded from: http://www.rastersof...olkaExample.zip (The SC4ToPPR tool is now included with the example).

The PPR conversion tool will find the closest palette entry in the ColecoVision palette. This is only needed if the SC4 or PPR file uses a custom palette; which must be something that the MSX2 supports. If you create your tiles in Polka using the default palette, and import them into VScreen editor, the default ColecoVision palette will be used.

Edited by cdoty, Sun Oct 9, 2011 7:00 AM.


#4 cdoty OFFLINE  

cdoty

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Posted Sun Oct 9, 2011 11:40 PM

The example has been updated again to support scrolling through the entire tilemap. The map currently scrolls cell by cell, rather than smooth scrolling, but it looks pretty decent when moving around the map.
Posted Image

Download the example, with source, from http://www.rastersof...lkaExample2.zip

The full tilemap takes up 24k of ROM space just for the tilemap. It does make it easy to calculate the scroll position as the Y position is the high byte, and the X position in the low byte, which can be added directly to the tilemap address to get the start of the map.

I'm really liking sjasm (http://home.wanadoo....tijn/sjasm.html) for the z80 stuff. It make declaring variables in RAM a lot easier than it used to be, and the local label support has made it easier to write input handling without creating a ton of label names.

Now my question is, can an area at the bottom (or top) of screen be locked as a score bar?

Edited by cdoty, Sun Oct 9, 2011 11:52 PM.


#5 retroclouds OFFLINE  

retroclouds

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Posted Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:53 AM

Hi! Interesting thread you have going there. It always nice learning about graphic tools one did not know about :)

You might also wanna checkout the Magellan map editor (this one is for the TI-99/4A home computer, wich uses the same VDP as the MSX1 and colecovision).
Magellan also allows map data to be exported in a binary format (see instructions), so it's easy to write a converter that outputs Z80 byte statements.

I'm using Magellan for my Tutankham homebrew version I'm currently working on. On the TMS9918 VDP you can't "lock" an area for scoreboard purposes.
So it depends on your software implementation. For my own needs, I wrote an assembly language library (spectra) that also includes a "viewport" functionality
With that I can scroll part of the screen, as seen in the video below.



Note that there are some bugs in the released version of Magellan, if you'r interested I can send you a link to an updated, unofficial version.

#6 cdoty OFFLINE  

cdoty

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Posted Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:16 AM

Hi! Interesting thread you have going there. It always nice learning about graphic tools one did not know about :)

You might also wanna checkout the Magellan map editor (this one is for the TI-99/4A home computer, wich uses the same VDP as the MSX1 and colecovision).
Magellan also allows map data to be exported in a binary format (see instructions), so it's easy to write a converter that outputs Z80 byte statements.


I did look into Magellan, and designed a simple screen, but couldn't find any support for mode 2 color tables.

I'm using Magellan for my Tutankham homebrew version I'm currently working on. On the TMS9918 VDP you can't "lock" an area for scoreboard purposes.
So it depends on your software implementation. For my own needs, I wrote an assembly language library (spectra) that also includes a "viewport" functionality
With that I can scroll part of the screen, as seen in the video below.


I can't believe I didn't think of that; all I would have to do it draw one less row of the map.

For some reason I was thinking the TMS9918 supported smooth scrolling.

#7 retroclouds OFFLINE  

retroclouds

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Posted Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:29 AM

No Magellan is a mode1 editor only. For mode2 you can take a look at Tadataka, which is based on Magellan. But I guess there are better ones for the colecovision.
There is no hardware pixel-smooth scrolling possible with the TMS9918. However it can be done using assembly language and some very good planning.
Malaika on the MSX1 is a good example. On the colecovision Ghostblaster comes to mind.
It will be possible with the future F18A VDP which is a drop-in replacement for the TMS9918. Ofcourse the game will have to support it. It wont work for existing games.




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