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OT: Oregon Trail handheld, Target store exclusive


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#26 Jess Ragan OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 5:11 PM

I already posted about this on Imgur, giving credit to this thread, of course.

 

So... it's an NOAC, huh? Don't the Apple II and NES run on the same processor? Would porting be feasible or would they have to make a lot of chances to make up for the different GPUs?



#27 Lathe26 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 6:15 PM

It could be a NOAC or maybe not. Alternatively, it could be an x86 or ARM processor. I don't know if anyone has definitively figured it out yet.

So far, all that can be said is that it appears to be a close variant of the DOS version of the game (but not identical).

#28 Zookeeper OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 6:18 PM

Checked the two around here, nothing. Dang it.

#29 Keatah OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 6:49 PM

Heh for those arguing about the floppy button. It's theatrical license! Doesn't matter if it goes all the way in or not. It's cute and convenient.

 

And this is the way a product should be launched. No hype no bullshit, it just kinda appears on the market. Instead of satisfying curiosity by way of social media and forum discussions, you'll go out and get one to do the satisfying.

 

Word gets out. Everyone suddenly wants one. Sales explode. It's how it worked in the 70's and 80's.



#30 King_Salamon OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 7:42 PM

Heh for those arguing about the floppy button. It's theatrical license! Doesn't matter if it goes all the way in or not. It's cute and convenient.

 

And this is the way a product should be launched. No hype no bullshit, it just kinda appears on the market. Instead of satisfying curiosity by way of social media and forum discussions, you'll go out and get one to do the satisfying.

 

Word gets out. Everyone suddenly wants one. Sales explode. It's how it worked in the 70's and 80's.

 

I did see it shown on a site a day before ToyFair and posted it on Facebook... we had a couple of weeks of hype!  lol  Love that this came out soo quickly!  



#31 Keatah OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 8:02 PM

Coupla days or a month or two of hype is fine, still, it's like the old days. We'd see something on Saturday Morning Cartoons in the early fall, and it would be out in time for Christmas. A few months at most. "Coming soon" in print ad back then seemed to mean 2 months, tops, too.

 

I was kinda referring to the YEARS of bullshit and carrying-on and whining about ataribox or RetroBlox. All they have is updates about updates apologizing for lack of information and promising to update us better. Cranking the wanker, you know?



#32 eightbit OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 9:42 PM

I WILL be picking this up over the weekend. Just awesome!



#33 mr_me OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 1, 2018 11:42 PM

I already posted about this on Imgur, giving credit to this thread, of course.
 
So... it's an NOAC, huh? Don't the Apple II and NES run on the same processor? Would porting be feasible or would they have to make a lot of chances to make up for the different GPUs?

The game was mostly BASIC so it could be ported to anything that has a BASIC interpreter/compiler including the Intellivision. In any case the graphics and animations would have to be reprogrammed unless its running an emulator.

#34 Lathe26 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 1:03 AM

The game was mostly BASIC so it could be ported to anything that has a BASIC interpreter/compiler including the Intellivision. In any case the graphics and animations would have to be reprogrammed unless its running an emulator.

 

It's my understanding that the Apple //e Oregon Trail was written in 6502 assembly.  In comparison, the predecessors to Oregon Trail were written in BASIC such as the earlier Apple //e game simply called Oregon as well as the even earlier mainframe versions.

 

I do know for a fact that Oregon Trail was shipped as binary code because I remember trying to edit it (and failing, though I was incompetent at assembly as a child).  In comparison, I successfully modified the earlier game Oregon since it was written in BASIC.  Also, when you compare the graphic perform of Oregon (poor and slow, but on par for Apple BASIC) vs Oregon Trail (fast and on par with other games), Oregon Trail was definitely not using the Apple BASIC interpreter.  Maybe they wrote Oregon Trail in BASIC and utilized a compiler, but I don't recall compilers be used much for 8-bit computers back in the day which is why I suspect it was written in 6502 assembly instead.



#35 carlsson ONLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 4:52 AM

I would think that low end ARM with any System-on-Chip of your liking is equally cheap to a specific NOAC these days, so unless you specifically need to emulate Nintendo 8-bit, only the laziest would stick to the older solution.



#36 mr_me OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 6:13 AM

 
It's my understanding that the Apple //e Oregon Trail was written in 6502 assembly.  In comparison, the predecessors to Oregon Trail were written in BASIC such as the earlier Apple //e game simply called Oregon as well as the even earlier mainframe versions.
 
I do know for a fact that Oregon Trail was shipped as binary code because I remember trying to edit it (and failing, though I was incompetent at assembly as a child).  In comparison, I successfully modified the earlier game Oregon since it was written in BASIC.  Also, when you compare the graphic perform of Oregon (poor and slow, but on par for Apple BASIC) vs Oregon Trail (fast and on par with other games), Oregon Trail was definitely not using the Apple BASIC interpreter.  Maybe they wrote Oregon Trail in BASIC and utilized a compiler, but I don't recall compilers be used much for 8-bit computers back in the day which is why I suspect it was written in 6502 assembly instead.

http://www.philipbou...-chapter01.html

The above page doesn't say directly but this quote indicates that the main game was still BASIC with graphics, animations, and maybe UI in assembly. [And they did have BASIC compilers for the Apple II back in 1984.]

"To write a program entirely in assembly language was very difficult and time consuming, compared to writing a program in BASIC. But Applesoft allowed you to mix the two languages, through a technique called & hooks. You could write most of the program in Applesoft, and then use an & hook to call an assembly language subroutine whenever you needed to display a paragraph of text or an image on the screen."

Still it doesn't tell us anything about this handheld version. The 1985 Apple II version is very similar to the 1990 DOS version and very different than previous versions that were done in a much more limited version of BASIC. The Intellivision version was likely ported from the older 1978/79 game as I don't think the BASIC source to the 1985 version is available. I'm assuming the 1985 version is still copyrighted and this handheld is licensed with access to the source code a possibility.

Edited by mr_me, Fri Mar 2, 2018 6:48 AM.


#37 The Usotsuki OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 6:19 AM

For what it's worth, a lot of the Apple ][ code is written in BASIC, and the MS-DOS version is built with some sort of Borland compiler.

 

The InTV forum isn't part of my usual stomping ground...I'm surprised this hasn't been posted in the Apple ][ forum or the Classic Computing section, which are, but I was looking to see if anyone had figured out for sure whether it was a NOAC or not.

 

If it turns out to be a NOAC, I'm really hoping someone dumps the ROM ;)

 

(BTW, I've been playing with the BASIC-to-machinecode wedge.  &HUNT ammo,0,0,0,0,0,lbs,ammo FTW?)



#38 Tanooki OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 9:57 AM

I hate to say it and not, but I got one yesterday.  The problem is last night and through today I'm so busy I haven't even the time to take it out of the box yet. :(  I may try tonight if I have some time which sucks, depends on burn out.  Just looking at it though where it is the layout is pretty impressive in your hands and to the eyes and ears with the output it has.  A very well done job on it.

 

 

 


If it turns out to be a NOAC, I'm really hoping someone dumps the ROM ;)

 

There is a guy on a facebook group for those basic fun arcade devices by the same company.  He has made a fun job out of tearing them down and dumping the contents of the ROM chips to tinker with and he was sharing his finds.  It may be in the process of being dumped, but after I got pissed at the lazy slack attitude over Rampage/Joust not showing up at most national retail and scalper filth selling them at 2-3x the price I got fed up seeing it and dropped out.   Just find the group and ask to join it.


Edited by Tanooki, Fri Mar 2, 2018 9:59 AM.


#39 Lathe26 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 11:23 AM

http://www.philipbou...-chapter01.html

The above page doesn't say directly but this quote indicates that the main game was still BASIC with graphics, animations, and maybe UI in assembly. [And they did have BASIC compilers for the Apple II back in 1984.]

"To write a program entirely in assembly language was very difficult and time consuming, compared to writing a program in BASIC. But Applesoft allowed you to mix the two languages, through a technique called & hooks. You could write most of the program in Applesoft, and then use an & hook to call an assembly language subroutine whenever you needed to display a paragraph of text or an image on the screen."

Still it doesn't tell us anything about this handheld version. The 1985 Apple II version is very similar to the 1990 DOS version and very different than previous versions that were done in a much more limited version of BASIC. The Intellivision version was likely ported from the older 1978/79 game as I don't think the BASIC source to the 1985 version is available. I'm assuming the 1985 version is still copyrighted and this handheld is licensed with access to the source code a possibility.

 

Good research.  I'd seen a different but long article by the guy who lead, designed, and coded the Oregon Trail but it made no mention of what the new version was written in.  Based on the above, I'm inclined to agree that the new Oregon Trail was most likely either a combination of BASIC and assembly or was a flavor of BASIC that was compiled.  The quote above does seem to indicated that.  After poking around today, I was able to find 2 or 3 BASIC compilers that were available back-in-the-day (though I didn't know of their existence back then).  Oregon Trail wasn't shipped as Applesoft BASIC that could be listed / edited by the built-in interpreter.

 

As for the Intellivision version, we actually know it was ported from the publicly available mainframe BASIC version of the code because they said so themselves on AtariAge.



#40 thanatos OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 12:05 PM

What the... How did I miss this thread?  Going to Target at lunch and hoping they're not all gone!

 

--edit.. Oh, it's in the Intellivision/Aquarius forum.  That's how I missed it.  :D



#41 Keatah OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 12:39 PM

How did the sleuths on AA here not pick up on this during development?



#42 mr_me OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 12:50 PM

https://medium.com/t...il-257924bdc6ae

Here it's clear the main program for the 1985 Apple II version was done in BASIC.

"By this time we already had doubts that the hunting game could be created using Applesoft BASIC  the programming language that we were using for the rest of the product."

Edit:
It still could be noac with graphics rewritten, based on the DOS version. The whole program could even have been re-written from scratch for noac just like the Intellivision direct-to-TV games. I wish someone would dump those noac Intellivision games.

Edited by mr_me, Fri Mar 2, 2018 1:18 PM.


#43 thanatos OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Mar 2, 2018 4:31 PM

Ok, scored one.  They had to go in the back to get them, they weren't on the shelves yet.

 

I like that you can save the game and come back to it later.  Wasn't expecting that!



#44 ComputerSpaceFan OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 12:07 AM

Get them to make Seven Cities of Gold like this and take my money!



#45 eightbit OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 12:30 AM

Picked up two today. Had to travel to TWO Targets to find them. First one most local to me had none..second one 45 minutes away had four....in the back room. Nothing on their website and no shelf spot. But the barcode certainly helps! Attached.. 

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#46 Pink OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Mar 3, 2018 5:19 AM

Had to go to three different Targets to find it last night on March 2. Checked toys, electronics, and any and all endcaps. Found it at the third Target that I went too on an endcap in toys across from Electronics. Fortunately I live in the Minneapolis/St Paul area where Target originated and is headquartered, there are so many Targets here, they say it's physically impossible to visit every single one of them in one lifetime.

 

target oregon trail handheld.jpg


Edited by Pink, Sat Mar 3, 2018 6:14 AM.


#47 Atari Dogs OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 4, 2018 12:51 PM

16 at my store.

#48 Byte Knight OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 4, 2018 2:07 PM

They had 7 at my local Target, but none on display, so the guy had to go back and get one for me.

 

I'm kinda disappointed that the game doesn't save your progress and it turns off after being idle for a few minutes...



#49 Tanooki OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 4, 2018 3:38 PM

Not sure what knockoff you're using but the unit does save your progress.  I left mine on and walked off to see the screen out but the little I moved was there, and anytime you pop the menu up or get the one at any stop on the trail has a hard save+quit option right there to select.



#50 Rev OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 4, 2018 4:20 PM

What the... How did I miss this thread?  Going to Target at lunch and hoping they're not all gone!
 
--edit.. Oh, it's in the Intellivision/Aquarius forum.  That's how I missed it.  :D


I thought everyone on AA made a weekly, if not daily visit to the Intv section! How could I of been so wrong......




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