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Do you need special hardware for games with voices

3 replies to this topic

#1 jim1174 OFFLINE  


    Chopper Commander

  • 237 posts

Posted Fri May 18, 2018 3:39 AM

Do you need any special hardware to play homebrew 2600 games with voices ?

#2 SpiceWare ONLINE  



  • 12,494 posts
  • Medieval Mayhem
  • Location:Planet Houston

Posted Fri May 18, 2018 8:45 AM

No, Quadrun and Open Sesame from back in the 80s had voices.   There is a lot of overhead for digital samples though, so the gameplay pauses during the playback.  


The AtariVox can be used to play back voices during gameplay, as well as 5 channel music and saving of high-scores & game settings.  You do give up the right joystick port to use it.  A number of homebrew games support it.


For games written to utilize the Harmony/Melody we can offload that overhead to the ARM processor, which allows for samples during gameplay as seen in Draconian.

#3 Video OFFLINE  



  • 9,345 posts
  • Location:Here

Posted Sat May 19, 2018 6:12 AM

No, usually a game cheats some extra cpu by not running video to play voices. Berserk ve did this, great game btw. I don't have any bitd games, but assume they do the same thing.

#4 Bucket Brigadier OFFLINE  

Bucket Brigadier

    Star Raider

  • 64 posts

Posted Sun May 20, 2018 9:30 AM

The only game I'm aware of which uses extra hardware for voices is Juno First, which uses the AtariVox mentioned by SpiceWare.  You can play Juno First without AtariVox, so it's not required, however, with the AtariVox you get extra voice-overs, such as the aliens taunting you, wave number, hyperspace notification, etc.  I can't recall if AtariVox is necessary to continue from the last wave or not with Juno First, but having AtariVox and an extra pair of speakers plugged into it gives you the full experience with that game.  There may be others that I'm not aware of, so someone correct me if I've missed them.

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