Warning: This game is really blocky. If you absolutely hate blocky games, this is not the game for you. Might as well quit reading now.
Catch you next project. Later! Bye...
Still here? Good.
Here's the story - Back around 2010-2011, some guy who calls himself RetroBrad designed his own portable game system. Instead of
using a boring ol' LCD panel for his display, he used an 8 by 8 array of multicolor led lights. So the whole display was 64 pixels.
What can be done with such a low res display? Well it turns out that his favorite childhood game was Super Mario Brothers, so
he wrote a platform game for his system that he called "Super Pixel Brothers". Despite the low resolution, it is quite fun to play.
"So what?" you ask. "What do we care?"
Here's the deal - Super Pixel Brothers was written in Basic, and the source code was released as open source. And now, thanks
to Nanochess and friends, Intellivision has its own basic compiler - IntyBasic!
So, all we have to do is slap the Super Pixel Brothers Basic source into IntyBasic, hit compile, and we can enjoy Mario style platform goodness?
Unfortunately, it's not that simple...
First, RetroBrad's portable system has a unique architecture, with red, green, and blue, bit planes combining to form each pixel.
The Intellivision has its own unique design, with gram and grom and backtab and the like... The controls and sound systems are completely different, too.
Second, not all basics are created equal. For example, the Basic RetroBrad used (Swordfish Basic) had mult-line "if then else endif" statements, whereas IntyBasic has single line if statements.
In short, it was a lot of work.
But now, you can enjoy low res platforming goodness on your Intellivision.
One catch. - The game requires extra cartridge ram to work. Currently (Dec 23, 2014), the only way to enable cartridge ram in an IntyBasic
program is to use the --jlp extension when compiling. The resulting program will only run under the jzintv emulator with the --jlp switch enabled.
In short, the command to run the game needs to look something like this:
jzintv --jlp -z1 spb.rom
The game will also theoretically work on a LTO flash card, but I don't have one to try it on...
Currently, it doesn't work on a cuttle cart 3 or Intellicart. In theory, the assembly file generated by IntyBasic could be hacked to run on a cuttle cart 3 (since the game only uses the extra ram and not any other jlp features). But I haven't succeeded in doing that yet. Perhaps in the future more elegant solutions will arise...
In the meantime, give Super Pixel Brothers a try in the jzintv emulator. It is more fun than it looks. Think of it as 20 levels of platforming fun to enjoy while you wait for Princess Quest to come out...
spb.rom 23.06KB 305 downloads
spb.bas 128.97KB 255 downloads
The original source code can be downloaded from this page:
Have fun! Send comments!