Jump to content

Photo

ATTENTION: Christmas Carol recall update!


14 replies to this topic

#1 DZ-Jay OFFLINE  

DZ-Jay

    River Patroller

  • 4,545 posts
  • Ranger Elf: Saviour of Christmas!
  • Location:NC, USA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:45 PM

Oops! We found a bug!


During the grand world debut of Christmas Carol at the Classic Gaming Expo in Las Vegas, we discovered a serious defect in the game. If you purchased the game at the show, please contact us at your earliest convenience for replacement options.


We are working hard to get this bug fixed quickly in order to provide replacement copies to all purchasers and resume sales of the game. Please read below for more information on the recall.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused, and exhort you to contact us, should you have any questions.

Recall Status:
  • The bug has been identified and corrected. We are currently going through one final round of testing to ensure that there are no more issues with the game.
  • If everything goes well, we expect to start distributing replacement cartridges during the last week of August.
  • Sales will resume right after, within the first two weeks of September.
Frequently Asked Questions:



What is the bug?

The bug is an error in the program that causes the game to freeze right after completing the 7th Stage. It means that even if you made it that far, you won't be able to beat the "boss" and therefore, you can't save Christmas.


Don't you test your games?

We pride ourselves in making quality games, and we definitely test them rigorously. Christmas Carol was indeed tested for months by a team of talented beta testers. Unfortunately, a latent bug that lay undiscovered in the program was triggered by a small and trival update that we made at the last minute. Our final tests did not account for this side-effect, and the bug squeezed by.


Is there a way to avoid the bug?

Unfortunately, no. The error is such that it will cause the game to freeze as soon as you complete the 7th Stage, under any and all circumstances. All other parts of the game work correctly, though.


Someone called this a "Fatal Bug", should I be alarmed?

During our previous announcements we were calling this a "Fatal Bug," due to its critical nature. However, rest assured that there is absolutely no risk to you or to your Intellivision®. It is merely fatal to the gaming experience, in that it does not let you finish the game as intended. To avoid confusion, in this and in all future announcements, we will refer to the defect as critical instead.


Does this mean that there are copies of the faulty game out there?

We've managed to recall most of the released copies with the bug, so only a small number of them remain "in the wild." Fortunately, we've accounted and tracked every single one of them. We will post a list of the serial numbers of the remaining copies in this page soon.


I bought one of your other titles at CG Expo, are they also defective?

No. Only our newest game, Christmas Carol, has a defect. All other titles sold at the show work as intended.


I bought a copy of Christmas Carol at CG Expo, what should I do?

Please contact us at your earliest convenience for replacement options. Our contact e-mail address is: <info@CarolVsGhost.com>.



INTELLIVISION® is a trademark of Intellivision Productions, Inc.

"Christmas Carol vs. The Ghost of Christmas Presents" the game, title, characters, and all other related material
are wholly owned by James Pujals, a.k.a. "DZ-Jay"



#2 SoulBlazer OFFLINE  

SoulBlazer

    River Patroller

  • 3,623 posts
  • Location:Providence RI

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:10 PM

Just curious about this....since I'm a damn curious and nosy person by nature. :)

Can you expand on what caused the bug and why it wasn't picked up before the game was released? More details, technical information, that kind of stuff?

#3 revolutionika OFFLINE  

revolutionika

    Quadrunner

  • 9,476 posts
  • Location:GA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:13 PM

Im not even sure if this matters, But are you testing it on Intellivision II and maybe a PAL system?

Anyway, I look forward to the release!

Edited by revolutionika, Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:13 PM.


#4 sqoon OFFLINE  

sqoon

    Stargunner

  • 1,094 posts
  • Location:Lost in battle overseas

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:19 PM

I'm just looking forward to getting one in my filthy paws.

#5 DZ-Jay OFFLINE  

DZ-Jay

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 4,545 posts
  • Ranger Elf: Saviour of Christmas!
  • Location:NC, USA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:40 PM

Im not even sure if this matters, But are you testing it on Intellivision II and maybe a PAL system?

Anyway, I look forward to the release!


We've been testing on Intellivision II, NTSC and PAL, ECS, etc. The game works on all of them.

-dZ.

#6 DZ-Jay OFFLINE  

DZ-Jay

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 4,545 posts
  • Ranger Elf: Saviour of Christmas!
  • Location:NC, USA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:46 PM

Just curious about this....since I'm a damn curious and nosy person by nature. :)

Can you expand on what caused the bug and why it wasn't picked up before the game was released? More details, technical information, that kind of stuff?


There was a sub-routine that had a bug in the way it kept track of its return address. By pure chance, the return address happened to remain intact until the end of the routine. Because of this, the game worked fine during testing.

Right before release, a small change was made to reset the sound effects engine right before the "Boss Level" started. The change involved a function call to the routine that initializes the sound chip. This change was innocuous, and was tested in isolation.

However, the new function call caused the return address of the routine to be corrupted, causing the function to "return to itself," in an endless loop, thus freezing the game.

We didn't notice it, but we didn't do a full regression and integration test of the entire game after it; just a more straightforward test to make sure that the sound chip was initialized properly, as expected.

Does that make sense?

-dZ.

#7 cmart604 ONLINE  

cmart604

    Quadrunner

  • 7,008 posts
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:56 PM

I'd just like to say that you guys have done a great job handling this and I continue to be impressed with how this game has been produced. :thumbsup: I "witnessed" the testing for lack of a better word, and it was extensive. Sometimes, sh*t just happens, it's how you deal with it that shows character. Can't wait to buy this myself. :love:

#8 DZ-Jay OFFLINE  

DZ-Jay

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 4,545 posts
  • Ranger Elf: Saviour of Christmas!
  • Location:NC, USA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:31 PM

I'd just like to say that you guys have done a great job handling this and I continue to be impressed with how this game has been produced. :thumbsup: I "witnessed" the testing for lack of a better word, and it was extensive. Sometimes, sh*t just happens, it's how you deal with it that shows character. Can't wait to buy this myself. :love:


Thanks for the kind words. The issue truly left us with egg on our faces, but we're trying our best to make everything whole again. It's very embarrassing for me, for it is my first game release, but I've really learned my lessons. :)

I fixed the bug the day I returned from CGE, but we've been testing the bug fix since then, to make sure NOTHING else is left to chance.

-dZ.

#9 revolutionika OFFLINE  

revolutionika

    Quadrunner

  • 9,476 posts
  • Location:GA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:40 PM

At least it happenned only on the "soft" release of CGE and NOT after like a hundred or more were sent out!

#10 intvnut OFFLINE  

intvnut

    Stargunner

  • 1,026 posts
  • Location:@R6 (top of stack)

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:47 PM

At least it happenned only on the "soft" release of CGE and NOT after like a hundred or more were sent out!


That's true. I still expect hundreds to fly off the shelf once we open ordering, though. ;-) GO GO GADGET ORDERING BUTTON! :D


I'd just like to say that you guys have done a great job handling this and I continue to be impressed with how this game has been produced. :thumbsup: I "witnessed" the testing for lack of a better word, and it was extensive. Sometimes, sh*t just happens, it's how you deal with it that shows character. Can't wait to buy this myself. :love:


As I said at CGExpo, finding the bug after the close on Saturday was a bit like crashing on your victory lap. Ah well, these things happen.

dZ and I definitely want to make sure everyone who gets a copy of Carol is satisified. I know we can't possibly please everyone (even with a flawless release), but we can certainly do our best. I appreciate everyone's kind words about our efforts. It makes it all worth it.

#11 revolutionika OFFLINE  

revolutionika

    Quadrunner

  • 9,476 posts
  • Location:GA

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:07 PM

Did you find that 'non intellivision' people were buying some Intellivision games, such as DK, Space Patrol and Carol?

#12 cmart604 ONLINE  

cmart604

    Quadrunner

  • 7,008 posts
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:34 PM


At least it happenned only on the "soft" release of CGE and NOT after like a hundred or more were sent out!


That's true. I still expect hundreds to fly off the shelf once we open ordering, though. ;-) GO GO GADGET ORDERING BUTTON! :D


I'd just like to say that you guys have done a great job handling this and I continue to be impressed with how this game has been produced. :thumbsup: I "witnessed" the testing for lack of a better word, and it was extensive. Sometimes, sh*t just happens, it's how you deal with it that shows character. Can't wait to buy this myself. :love:


As I said at CGExpo, finding the bug after the close on Saturday was a bit like crashing on your victory lap. Ah well, these things happen.

dZ and I definitely want to make sure everyone who gets a copy of Carol is satisified. I know we can't possibly please everyone (even with a flawless release), but we can certainly do our best. I appreciate everyone's kind words about our efforts. It makes it all worth it.


I know a guy who might just buy a few copies. :)

#13 DZ-Jay OFFLINE  

DZ-Jay

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 4,545 posts
  • Ranger Elf: Saviour of Christmas!
  • Location:NC, USA

Posted Sun Aug 19, 2012 4:49 AM

Did you find that 'non intellivision' people were buying some Intellivision games, such as DK, Space Patrol and Carol?


There were many "non-Intellivision" people that showed interest in the games, and played them extensively in the demo console. Of those, I only recall one person that bough Christmas Carol while saying "now I have to find myself an Intellivision."

However, it is likely the case that this person had an Intellivision when he was younger, and decided to "go back" to it. If so, he wouldn't qualify as "non-Intellivision."

That said, I had the feeling that if the games were available without requiring the console (not that that were possible), more people would have bought them. I saw all sorts of people enjoying the demo games.

-dZ.

#14 SoulBlazer OFFLINE  

SoulBlazer

    River Patroller

  • 3,623 posts
  • Location:Providence RI

Posted Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:13 AM


Did you find that 'non intellivision' people were buying some Intellivision games, such as DK, Space Patrol and Carol?


There were many "non-Intellivision" people that showed interest in the games, and played them extensively in the demo console. Of those, I only recall one person that bough Christmas Carol while saying "now I have to find myself an Intellivision."

However, it is likely the case that this person had an Intellivision when he was younger, and decided to "go back" to it. If so, he wouldn't qualify as "non-Intellivision."

That said, I had the feeling that if the games were available without requiring the console (not that that were possible), more people would have bought them. I saw all sorts of people enjoying the demo games.

-dZ.


Yeah, I know it's a 'hot topic' around here (and all of AA) but since I did all my classic game playing via emulation, I wish the ROM's for these homebrews were available. I'd gladly pay, of course.

Good luck with the sales of the games!

#15 cparsley OFFLINE  

cparsley

    Stargunner

  • 1,759 posts

Posted Sun Aug 19, 2012 1:26 PM

I'd expect ROM images wouldn't be forthcoming until all carts had been sold first, and then only when the creator of the work decides to do so.




0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users