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What do you think of 5200 Pole Position?

Pole Position

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#1 Nuclear Pacman ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 17, 2019 7:34 PM

This is the current HSC game. Just wanted to talk about it a bit outside of that. A few quick thoughts:

 

Was this game released before Pole Position 2 was in arcades? I'm kind of meh about this version. As usual for the 5200 it has good audio. Being a person that doesn't really understand the abilities of the 5200, it seems like it lacks some graphical polish that 'could' have been there. 

 

Graphically, it's still so blocky. The road signs are blank. The cars are put together like a step pyramid. The explosion effect is uninspired. The only thing I like about the graphics is the scrolling, which is superb. I do like the analog controls here, it works and it works good. 

 

The reason I ask about PP2 is because this version has plentiful game modes, but only the original track. Seems like the 5200 could have handled more tracks. After playing this quite a bit lately, I really have a renewed appreciation for the 7800  version of Pole Position 2. 

 

I guess I'm disappointed, it seems like the 5200 could have atleast had some more refined graphics. Like the car exploding into pieces, and maybe some kind of art on the road signs, like even the ATARI fuji ...something simple. 



#2 SoundGammon OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 17, 2019 8:32 PM

Someone was doing some hacking of the 8-bit version, better explosions and such.

 

I'll have to do some digging...



#3 Cafeman OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:53 AM

The 5200 only has 4 single color player sprites, and 4 missile sprites. That is the reason for blank billboards, used with a dynamically widened missile, but only 1 color and no bitmap image.

True, the cars are really ugly. But compare it to the 2600 version!

#4 Nuclear Pacman ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 9:58 AM

I'll admit I tend to romanticize the 5200 and its capabilities. I probably expect too much from it.

#5 edladdin OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 10:40 AM

The blank signs were always disappointing to me.  Why add them at all to just have them blank?    Do they add gameplay by serving as something to wreck into? 



#6 Cafeman OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 10:42 AM

The blank signs were always disappointing to me.  Why add them at all to just have them blank?    Do they add gameplay by serving as something to wreck into?


Well yes, it would not be Pole Position if it didn't have those signs to crash into, especially around curves.

#7 edladdin OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 10:43 AM

Well yes, it would not be Pole Position if it didn't have those signs to crash into, especially around curves.

 

Ah, ok.   I haven't actually played it in so long, I could not remember. 



#8 AverageSoftware OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:21 AM

I think 5200 Pole Position is a decent game on its own terms, but not a terribly good port of Pole Position.  I very much prefer the 7800 or even the 2600 versions, which just feel better to me.

 

I also played the crap out of the Intellivision version back in the day, but I don't remember how good that version actually was.



#9 Cafeman OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:26 AM

The analog control of the 5200 version is really sweet, compared to the tappity-tap-tap of the A8 version's digital control.

#10 bohoki OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:47 PM

pole position always bugged me i mean you bust your ass to be the top of the pole you start the race and then find out there are jerks already on the track  the whole point of the pole position is to not have to deal with slowpokes till you lap them



#11 SoundGammon OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 18, 2019 8:50 PM

pole position always bugged me i mean you bust your ass to be the top of the pole you start the race and then find out there are jerks already on the track  the whole point of the pole position is to not have to deal with slowpokes till you lap them

Also, there shouldn't be any other cars on the track during the practice lap!

 

Make your best time!



#12 kiwilove OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 19, 2019 3:50 AM

If you wanted to see what could be possible on the 5200?  You can check out the various road racers that have appeared for the Atari 8-bit computers.  There should be videos somewhere with most of them running?

And of the best of these - how many of these could be converted to run on the 5200 hardware?

Elektraglide is like Pole Position without the cars present (from 3rd person to first person viewpoint) - with music.  Not a likely 5200 version to hack for - because of the music I guess?

And there's Pole Position X - which is a map editor attached to Pole Position.  I can't say if these alternative tracks makes Pole Position better or not?  Played them back in the day and can't remember if they were fun or not?  Of course it's not likely to be a candidate for a 5200 conversion - but may provide some thought as to changing Pole Positions tracks?

I can't answer the technical questions as to whether Stunt Car Racer could be hacked to run on the 5200?  Probably not enough memory to do so?  And far too much work to even try hacking it for a 5200 conversion.

 

Baja Buggies only comes to mind - which is probably already hacked to run on the 5200?  It's not better than Pole Position - but was OK to play before Pole Position appeared.

Night Driver comes to mind - as something that ought to run on the 5200 - but I can't remember if it was a good conversion or not?  To consider it a worthwhile hack to do for someone to do it?

 

There is a current road racer project being coded - but it needs to be already adapted to run on the 5200 - for it to be a prospect for the 5200 also.

Most A8 projects are not written with a 5200 version as well - in mind.

 

Harvey



#13 bohoki OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 19, 2019 5:52 PM

a top down indy500 or a champion sprint would have been cool i like the 5200 but the commodore 64 is my first choice



#14 Cafeman OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 19, 2019 8:11 PM

The worst thing about 5200 and A8 Pole Position is how the opponent cars seem to jump position due to the scaling effect. It is difficult to judge if it is safe to pass around them.

#15 A Black Falcon OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 24, 2019 1:03 AM

Thanks to its good analog controls and dramatically better audio, 7800 Pole Position II may have more tracks, but I'd probably rather play the 5200 one.  The graphics are blocky and maybe the system could do better, but it looks nice enough and the gameplay shines through.  This is one of those games that really shows off the advantage of an analog joystick!  I wish the 5200 had more racing games (and with analog), it's too bad that this is the only one.



#16 leech OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 25, 2019 1:20 PM

If you wanted to see what could be possible on the 5200?  You can check out the various road racers that have appeared for the Atari 8-bit computers.  There should be videos somewhere with most of them running?
And of the best of these - how many of these could be converted to run on the 5200 hardware?
Elektraglide is like Pole Position without the cars present (from 3rd person to first person viewpoint) - with music.  Not a likely 5200 version to hack for - because of the music I guess?
And there's Pole Position X - which is a map editor attached to Pole Position.  I can't say if these alternative tracks makes Pole Position better or not?  Played them back in the day and can't remember if they were fun or not?  Of course it's not likely to be a candidate for a 5200 conversion - but may provide some thought as to changing Pole Positions tracks?
I can't answer the technical questions as to whether Stunt Car Racer could be hacked to run on the 5200?  Probably not enough memory to do so?  And far too much work to even try hacking it for a 5200 conversion.
 
Baja Buggies only comes to mind - which is probably already hacked to run on the 5200?  It's not better than Pole Position - but was OK to play before Pole Position appeared.
Night Driver comes to mind - as something that ought to run on the 5200 - but I can't remember if it was a good conversion or not?  To consider it a worthwhile hack to do for someone to do it?
 
There is a current road racer project being coded - but it needs to be already adapted to run on the 5200 - for it to be a prospect for the 5200 also.
Most A8 projects are not written with a 5200 version as well - in mind.
 
Harvey

Would LOVE a conversion of the great american cross country road race for the 5200. https://www.mobygame...untry-road-race

#17 FujiSkunk OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 25, 2019 1:31 PM

I played a lot of 5200 Pole Position back in the day, thanks to the 5200 owned by the guy my mother was dating at the time.  Sure, the graphics weren't the greatest, but as people have mentioned, it was still much better than the 2600 version (which, I'll say, is no slouch on its own).  Set the difficulty to "Miami", plug in a track-ball, and then get ready to do a lot of weaving, zigging and zagging!  Good times.

 

Plus, you know, D.A.R.Y.L.



#18 BassGuitari OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 25, 2019 9:51 PM

It's pretty good IMO! The analog control does a lot for it.







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