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GTIA Blast update

GTIA Blast

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#51 playsoft OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:26 PM

When looking at the data-segments I saw, that you mostly used $6000-7FFF or just 8k of the available 16k rambanks ($4000-7FFF), WHY ?!?

 

When Kyle asked about supporting the RAMBO 1088K I said it sounded like a possibility but that I'd leave it until the end as I didn't really want to support another variant during development. However after finding out how RAMBO 1088K worked (thanks to the excellent Altirra h/w reference manual) by only using half the banks at $6000 I get the same layout as the 5200 version. So the 1088K version only exists now because I could do it for free (well it was a couple of hours work - selecting the 5200 bank layout with 8-bit code options, different macros for bank selection and turning the resulting cart image into a xex).

 

I don't really know where we'll end up as it's not like any of this is planned in advance. If we end up using the entire 1MB of the MaxFlash then perhaps we will make two 5200 versions - they will be 512K so are possible candidates for what you suggest.



#52 playsoft OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:42 PM

Ok, so you're updating file on the 5200 thread?  Wasn't sure.

 

http://atariage.com/...timate-sd-cart/

 

Yes, the current demo was released in the 5200 thread first - it's post #23 (is there anything I can do to stop people downloading the initial version in the first post?).

 

The two 8-bit releases in this topic are identical to that version.

 

I've got nothing else to show at the moment as I have been working on the midi converter. I am aiming for a new demo release every 6 months, so that there is enough new content to make it worthwhile.



#53 Greg2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:54 PM

 

Yes, the current demo was released in the 5200 thread first - it's post #23 (is there anything I can do to stop people downloading the initial version in the first post?).

 

The two 8-bit releases in this topic are identical to that version.

 

I've got nothing else to show at the moment as I have been working on the midi converter. I am aiming for a new demo release every 6 months, so that there is enough new content to make it worthwhile.

 

Ah thanks.  I think you can re-edit the first post and replace the attachment.



#54 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:59 PM

After a period of time AA will not let a post be edit until the sysop grants you the priveledge pm him.



#55 CharlieChaplin OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:50 AM

Well,

 

for the ones still using disk drives (or disk emulation), here is a Superpacker/Exomizer packed version of the latest "Atari Blast" update. It comes on a 180k disk, packed length is 105kbytes of originally 456kbytes and the program still requires 1088k RAM to run...

 

-Andreas Koch.

 

Attached Files



#56 snicklin OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 28, 2014 11:40 AM

Wow, I've just been playing this packed version and it is incredible in many ways. The size of it is beyond belief!

 

I have some requests for it, but please feel free to ignore them as I am not a person who demands things and this is your work, not mine, I just want to suggest some ideas which may improve it further.... and I appreciate that this isn't a finished version....

 

1) When the white noise screen comes up, make it that you can hit fire to continue rather than wait a few seconds. This will give people a small rest of the length of their choice before moving onto the next level.

 

2) Can you make it so that the background colours are known and then the colours of the aliens / bullets are set to contrast to the background? It can sometimes be difficult to see what is going on.

 

3) Can the transitions from one colour to another or another set of background tiles be done in a smooth way, i.e. perhaps have a screen with very little going on (less colours / backgrounds) and then do the transition there? That way it will appear smooth.

 

4) I always feel a bit aggrieved when an alien approaches from the back and then hits you when you have no idea it is about to arrive. Is there some way that the user can be alerted that an alien approach is arriving from behind you (I am being so careful with my words here!)? Maybe a sound or a screen flash or something on the screen appears?

 

5) And this one is just an idea that entered my head.... with some specific formations that arrive, the scrolling is stopped until they've all gone, that they will continue in their formation until they're all shot down.

 

It appears to be a huge game and has so much going for it. This could I suspect go on to be one of the best Atari games that exists.



#57 Stephen OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:25 PM

Well,

 

for the ones still using disk drives (or disk emulation), here is a Superpacker/Exomizer packed version of the latest "Atari Blast" update. It comes on a 180k disk, packed length is 105kbytes of originally 456kbytes and the program still requires 1088k RAM to run...

 

-Andreas Koch.

 

Awesome - finally tried this on the real machine (PAL 130XE) and it looks great!



#58 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 28, 2014 4:10 PM

What I've played and seen so far is perfect, visibility, game play. I personally find little that would need to be changed. I enjoy the full range of and do not want the enemy/background changed in the least. It makes the game better in my book just the way it is. I have not run into the scrolling issue.

The fire button to continue on static screen seems valid.

The rest of it makes for the kind of onslaught game play I love and would not change a thing. Frenzied game play is fun



#59 snicklin OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014 11:01 AM

 I have not run into the scrolling issue.

 

Hi The_Doctor, if you're referring to my point 5, it's not an issue that I have with the scrolling, it is a feature request that the background stops scrolling with some attack waves.

 

As for the enemies and the background, I'd rather that the colours are vastly different for visibility. Imagine playing pong on a black background with a black ball and black bats. OK, it's not that extreme I accept!



#60 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:42 PM

I am a big fan of tempest 2k on the jaguar, with the full melto vision pixel matic melee of colorful bit blasted masochism. My wife on the other hand prefers checkers on the coffee table. I enjoy the challenge but those big red and black circles on the checkerboard just don't cut it for me. Now add some horses castle and pawn and I become more interested.... add some color movement and characters beating the crap out of each other and I'm hooked! A little variety a and couple areas where I really have to pay attention keeps me in the game. I will play it thru again but I really didn't have trouble keeping track of where I was or where the enemy was....althought I just took one from behind I didn't expect on an old monitor that has the screen height spread way to far apart... the width and v height knobs fixed that. My kid adjusted it so there were no borders around the screen at all for some reason... analog zoom?


Edited by _The Doctor__, Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:46 PM.


#61 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:45 PM

oh I see you mean you want it to stop scrolling sometimes.... It's not that it had a problem scrolling.

 

 

Please Sir, I want some more Atari blast.

Sir, I want some more

May I have some more, Sir please.

 

Oliver twist also wanted some more!


Edited by _The Doctor__, Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:50 PM.


#62 playsoft OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 29, 2014 2:49 PM

Wow, I've just been playing this packed version and it is incredible in many ways. The size of it is beyond belief!

 

I have some requests for it, but please feel free to ignore them as I am not a person who demands things and this is your work, not mine, I just want to suggest some ideas which may improve it further.... and I appreciate that this isn't a finished version....

 

1) When the white noise screen comes up, make it that you can hit fire to continue rather than wait a few seconds. This will give people a small rest of the length of their choice before moving onto the next level.

 

2) Can you make it so that the background colours are known and then the colours of the aliens / bullets are set to contrast to the background? It can sometimes be difficult to see what is going on.

 

3) Can the transitions from one colour to another or another set of background tiles be done in a smooth way, i.e. perhaps have a screen with very little going on (less colours / backgrounds) and then do the transition there? That way it will appear smooth.

 

4) I always feel a bit aggrieved when an alien approaches from the back and then hits you when you have no idea it is about to arrive. Is there some way that the user can be alerted that an alien approach is arriving from behind you (I am being so careful with my words here!)? Maybe a sound or a screen flash or something on the screen appears?

 

5) And this one is just an idea that entered my head.... with some specific formations that arrive, the scrolling is stopped until they've all gone, that they will continue in their formation until they're all shot down.

 

It appears to be a huge game and has so much going for it. This could I suspect go on to be one of the best Atari games that exists.

 

1) I doubt the static display will remain in it's current form. I am all for not giving the player any respite at all and just go straight into the next level. It takes a few frames to set up the next level and without any intermission at all it looks like a glitch - ditto if the static display is not held long enough. The first 5200 demo held the static display for half a second or so (nothing written in it) and that seemed about right.

 

My inclination is to keep the static display short and perhaps insert a code or message blipvert style. A code could be used in-game perhaps, a message would be something funny (hopefully).

 

2) & 3) are more Harvey's area but it is difficult to maintain a good contrast between the two. There were some very nice ANTIC 2 optical illusion designs which we canned because we just couldn't get sprite visibility anywhere near acceptable.

 

4) I suppose it should be possible to add something in the status area to indicate where the next attack will come from. Alternatively play it like squash and try and keep to the centre of the court.

 

5) Yes that's a possibility. At the moment I'm concentrating on putting the main building blocks together and once I'm happy I have all of the main ones there, then I'll start trying to turn it into something playable.

 

The main thing with any spare time project is for it to be fun to work on. The plan is to work on it for the rest of the year and hopefully end up with something reasonably playable.



#63 snicklin OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Feb 1, 2014 4:31 AM

Thanks for the update Paul, sorry if I seemed to be throwing a lot of things your way at once, it's just that I tend to get a lot of ideas! I had my personality type tested at work (http://www.belbin.com/) and if you see the personality types there, I am a "Plant" / "Implementer".

 

Anyway, you both have something very special on your hands here, best of luck with it and thanks for the updates on here.


Edited by snicklin, Sat Feb 1, 2014 4:32 AM.


#64 playsoft OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Feb 1, 2014 10:13 AM

Thanks Steve. The original intent was for it to be a single load .xex file, GTIA 9 only with a couple of levels. Exactly where it will end up I don't know as it seems to have taken on a life of its own. As long as it continues to be fun to work on is the main thing - I'm not going to beat myself up saying it must do this or that - it has already exceeded what I was expecting to do.



#65 snicklin OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Feb 1, 2014 12:28 PM

Thanks Steve. The original intent was for it to be a single load .xex file, GTIA 9 only with a couple of levels. Exactly where it will end up I don't know as it seems to have taken on a life of its own. As long as it continues to be fun to work on is the main thing - I'm not going to beat myself up saying it must do this or that - it has already exceeded what I was expecting to do.

 

I've just watched it all the way through all the levels and the size of this thing is incredible. I especially like level 7 (I think) where the craters are, when the colour scheme changes to dark blue I think it's very nicely presented.

 

I believe that projects whereby the programmer/programmers is/are having fun are the best projects. 



#66 fibrewire OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Feb 7, 2014 3:32 AM

Exactly where it will end up I don't know as it seems to have taken on a life of its own.

 

Holy crap man! This game is HUGE! how big is that Atari Blast demo file?



#67 Stormtrooper of Death OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Feb 7, 2014 4:45 AM

I like the soundtrack of this game. Its from the MSX game "Nemesis" or not ?



#68 playsoft OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Feb 7, 2014 12:10 PM

 

Holy crap man! This game is HUGE! how big is that Atari Blast demo file?

 

Well it is somewhere around 450K at the moment although there is some wasted space in there. It will require a MaxFlash 8Mbit cart for the 8-bit and a Ultimate SD cart on the 5200 where it runs as a 512K hybrid image.

 

I like the soundtrack of this game. Its from the MSX game "Nemesis" or not ?

 

There are 4 tracks - the Xevious jingle, two from Gradius and one from another game (I forget). I picked the midi files up from The Midi Shrine website which I converted to a format suitable for the 8-bit. The plan was for the music to be a homage to other shooters but now I hope to have some original music instead.



#69 _The Doctor__ ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:58 AM

I like the music selection, it adds to the nostalgic theme as you blast all the characters and bad guys of the past.. It fits right in!



#70 playsoft OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 19, 2014 4:04 AM

There is a new demo available here:

 

http://atariage.com/...demo-july-2014/

 

Andreas: I managed to use Superpacker/Exomizer to make a smaller .xex file (I'm not 100% sure I did it right, but it seems to work ok on Altirra) but I don't know what you did to make an ATR.



#71 Philsan ONLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 19, 2014 6:31 AM

There is a new demo available here:

 

http://atariage.com/...demo-july-2014/

 

Andreas: I managed to use Superpacker/Exomizer to make a smaller .xex file (I'm not 100% sure I did it right, but it seems to work ok on Altirra) but I don't know what you did to make an ATR.

I am speechless. Try the demo and press numeric keys. Awesome!



#72 DrVenkman ONLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 19, 2014 6:57 AM

Wow! This is amazing. The RAMBO1088 version runs great in Atari800MacX too; just select the larger RAM size in the Preferences for the emulated machine. 



#73 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 19, 2014 11:55 AM

Holy shit! THE PARALLAX! IT'S BEAUTIFUL!!!

-Thom

#74 Paul Westphal OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 19, 2014 12:25 PM

It was impressing people at the Seattle Retro Gaming Expo

#75 CharlieChaplin OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:56 PM

There is a new demo available here:

 

http://atariage.com/...demo-july-2014/

 

Andreas: I managed to use Superpacker/Exomizer to make a smaller .xex file (I'm not 100% sure I did it right, but it seems to work ok on Altirra) but I don't know what you did to make an ATR.

 

 

Hello Paul,

 

I used the unpacked version of Atari Blast! and created my own Exomizer version of it (with page 4 and page 5 as buffer and depacker). Next I added a small title (which uses page 6) and then I put the XEX file onto an ATR image with MakeATR by Soudi, which you can find here:

http://www.atarionli...tformy&tg=PC#PC

Its a tool for Windows PC`s, there are several other PC tools to put an XEX file onto an ATR image, e.g. there is one from HiasSoft:

http://www.horus.com...ri/#tools-win32

 

Last but not least, I added a bootloader, so the image boots automatically. HiasSoft also offers a bootloader named PicoDOS (can be found on his MyPicoDOS image) here: http://www.horus.com...s/atari/#mypdos

Picodos works  in DOS 2 format from 90k up to 16MB and will boot the very first file on the disk (COM/XEX files only). There are several other bootloaders, like Auto-Booter by Keith Ledbetter from Analog or Antic magazine, Avalon Boot by Mr. Bacardi, etc.

 

Attached you can find a 180k ATR image of Atari Blast, packed with Exomizer...

Attached Files


Edited by CharlieChaplin, Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:57 PM.





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