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Member Since 28 Aug 2005
OFFLINE Last Active Oct 24 2016 11:37 PM

#2414746 XM Status Page...

Posted by espire8 on Mon Nov 28, 2011 11:30 AM

The demos are cool, but I wish at least just one of the games was a little less secretive. I know that the main reason for this is the "wow factor" on release day, but I've always found that community support makes for better gameplay; I learned that with some of my 2600 projects. And, that's the one thing that's missing for me that would make me buy the XM right out. For now, it sounds like I have to wait until release day, and then see what people say about the games. That's not an issue, but I am hoping that with everything invested, these will be the best playable games possible. If even just one of them is remotely fun to play, I have my money standing by.

Quite frankly, even I don't know how many XM games GroovyBee got going at once. But I can say that you've got nothing to worry about if at least one were remotely fun. There's at least two XM games I know will be a blast to play. I can assure you because two of the games, apart from providing the graphics, I've been able to play test for Mark and you definitely won't be disappointed! The secrecy is to make for a surprise similar to how holiday game carts were released in the past. ;)

#2411640 2600 Galaxian - near perfect arcade colors & graphics hack

Posted by espire8 on Tue Nov 22, 2011 5:09 PM

I wanted to try my hand at sprucing up the graphics for this 2600 galaxian hack. It's my attempt to work around the flagship issue Nukey Shay described in his Galaxian-Expanded thread (which I bumped up after missing it for almost a year!). I've redrawn all the aliens including all the in-flight attacking positions and altered the player's ship to better match the arcade.
The left pic is how the graphics looked before worked on. The middle show my alterations. The right is the arcade version to compare.

Galaxian-Expanded(PAL60).bin.png Galaxian enchanced gfx hack.gif 118124211022.png

This is as close as to arcade perfect the alien graphics can be as far as this goes. I've yet to see how the colors look on real hardware connected to a standard TV, so the bottom row of aliens may be too dark, in which case I'll brighten it up if need be. I want to make sure the colors are bright enough to show up clearly even thru an RF signal.

I don't have the binary ready to post yet. I'm presently waiting on a hack request to this game from Nukey so I can include it in the binary with the new graphics before I post it here later.

Update: Here's a binary with just the flagship fix and alternative alien graphic changes. Attached File  Galaxian-Expanded_gfx-hack_espire8(NTSC).bin   8KB   975 downloads

The double-size ship for "A" difficulty is not in this tho. Nukey may post an update if this feature is ever added later.

#2393175 21 Blue, an Atari 2600 homebrew

Posted by espire8 on Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:22 PM

You know I played this game quite a bit, and I never saw any issue with the splits, so it is possibly something introduced with the new changes. Still, as long as you think it's fixed now ;)

That could be. I'm not sure about others, but I so much like the new changes thou. But I'll be play testing it more. The only bug I found with the latest build is the title screen when restarting a game. There's 'garbage' where the text should be after I press the button, but the selection still functions as it should - continuing on the same level.
The splits also are working well.

#2392702 21 Blue, an Atari 2600 homebrew

Posted by espire8 on Thu Oct 20, 2011 4:32 PM

okay. Found a possible bug.

On HARD level I noticed sometime I can't split my hand when I have a pair of 3's, 5's or 7's, and at one time a pair of K's as well.
At first I thought it were because I'm supposed to have sufficent money on hand to cover for any insurance or "doubling" or "splitting" which I think is a very good idea. But where I had enough funds, sometime I didn't have the "splitting" option when dealt with a pair of the fore mentioned.
I don't know if this is the case with the other levels (Easy, Med) as I just been playing Hard level. I'll investigate those levels too.

Maybe this can be remedied if you have the option default to "SPLIT" whenever a pair of cards appear, - as was done for any BJ defaulting to "STAND".

And if possible, can a new game be started over at the same difficulty level as the last game were set to? Sometimes at Hard level's "game over" screen, I often mistakenly restart a new game at Petra's EASY level whenever I want to replay the Hard level again.

Also, as a suggestion, I think it a good idea to have the dealers strip completely down only on the HARD level instead of in all the levels.
This should encourage players to play the hard level in order to see the "full ending".
Easy level - Petra always keeps her clothes.
Med level - All the dealers strip only to their bikini.
Hard level - All dealers go top-less.
If possible, you may try having different amounts of money to start with like:
EASY - dealer $500 / player $500
MED - dealer $800 / player $200
HARD - dealer $900 / player $100

I'm sorry for suggesting all this so late in the game when you already are calling it finished -except for bug reports. If there's no more room, maybe these ideas can be used for a sequel.

Anyhow, wonderful job on this game for what it is! -- it's a real keeper!

#2391529 21 Blue, an Atari 2600 homebrew

Posted by espire8 on Tue Oct 18, 2011 4:55 PM

Just had to relate this..

I recently was trying to find a quick way to deliberately give my bets away to start the game with a low figure. I had about $180 left and wanted to bring it down to 100. So next hand I got delt a pair of 10's and I split them, doubled-down on both. Then got hit with another pair. Spilt and double-down those too. I ended up winning all four hands including a blackjack and nearly cleaned out the dealer that turn!
Heh-heh... seems that I win more often when I'm trying to lose! :lol:

#2391342 21 Blue, an Atari 2600 homebrew

Posted by espire8 on Tue Oct 18, 2011 12:04 PM

Ah..okay. Didn't know space was that tight.

Well, if nothing can be done with the bet amounts, then Instead, how about just making a minor adjustment? $100 as the default starting account for the player, and increasing the dealer's account to $900? That should be doable, right?

I'm not sure if it's just me, but I actually enjoy more the risk of betting with money I "worked" to build my account up with than the free money I started the game with. It's the only way I get this sense of "holding my breath" when I start to bet higher after tactfully winning my way up from a small amount to begin with. That kind of urgency is what makes the game for me, --you know what mean?

I don't get that sensation when I already have $500 to start, and with a max bet limit of $80, which prevents me from taking any risk bets at the start. So I tend to bet at max without a care. I almost never use the low amounts since if I go broke, I know I can start over with another $500 of free money anyway. I feel the reason for even having low bet increments is for starting a game with low money account in the same low bet range that you may "work" your way up to the higher range, when I want to "risk" it anytime there after. Am I making any sense?

#2389386 Frantic (2600)

Posted by espire8 on Fri Oct 14, 2011 9:57 PM

I thought the death looked too static at one point, but I also like the way it's set up now too. Makes the death look unique every time, which works well for me. It does use no extra space at all where the images are concerned.

#1771602 2600 Moon Patrol -Arcade

Posted by espire8 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 10:39 PM

Nice but I got one nitpick. Moon Patrol wasn't made by Williams, it was licensed from a company called IREM. I think.

I haven't done any research before but you're right, this was made in Japan by IREM. I still kind of like how the William's logo came out so I'm going to keep it. :)

Q: Are the sound effects in the 2600 port of Moon Patrol similar to that of the arcade version? I don't recall ever playing the arcade version of this game so I would not know.

The sound f/x is close enough, I think. I've not played the arcade version for eons but he music is what made it memorable. In this hack, I were lucky to find how to tweak it to play a few more notes.

Okay, I made a few more changes listed below and I think this hack is about done.
- Marquee style game title
- Improved rover animation
- Enemy ships color/sprites refined for arcade accuracy
- Black color enemy hover craft.
- New digital score display font.
inspired from one of RevEng's Batari font packs
Attached File  MOONPATROL_ARCADE_hack_v2.bin   8KB   391 downloads
NOTE: Set both Left and Right difficulty to 'A' for music and 3-speed side scrolling control. -Enjoy!

#1768706 2600 Moon Patrol -Arcade

Posted by espire8 on Tue Jun 9, 2009 7:11 PM

This is a graphic and audio hack; --should be a real treat for those who still enjoy this old classic.
Here's what's new:
1.) Moon buggy animation w/ bouncy tires when hit.
2.) Moon buggy color now look more arcade accurate.
3.) All enemy sprites/colors updated.
4.) New play field color palette.
5.) Music has been adjusted to play better than what it was. (set diff sw to 'A' for music)
6.) New MP arcade title screen.

Attached File  MOONPATROL_ARCADE__hack_by_espire8_.BIN   8KB   474 downloadsNote: the latest binary release of this hack can be found by following this link.

I just need to change the phantom car's color to black to call this done.
I wanted to post a complete finished hack but I elected to post it now so any of you who are good at this game can play it in stella and post here a screen shot of that phantom car's original color so I can locate it and finish the color change. Thanks and have fun! :)

MOONPATROL_ARCADE__espire8_.BIN_1.png MOONpatrolColourPic.png

#1765225 Playable 2600 Dig Dug-arcade gfx hack!

Posted by espire8 on Thu Jun 4, 2009 6:39 PM

Dig_Dug__infinite_lives__NTSC.bin.png Dig_Dug__arcade_gfx_infinite_lives__NTSC.bin.png
This is a hack of another hack by Omegamatrix (Dig Dug with infinite lives) which somehow I decided to check if upgrading the sprite graphics was possible, and it works! I spent the whole afternoon redrawing the sprites. This was never possible in the original source code as discussed in this older thread.

Finally - more accurate and now playable! I'd remove the infinite lives but I'm afraid to mess with this hack any further.
Edit-- Just been informed this particular rom has the cheat turned off, so this is even better than I thought. Though the attached bin file name say *infinite lives* it's only by name. I'm not gonna change out the attachment since there are already quite a number of downloads; --just know this version does gives you 5 lives to start and a bonus life at 10,000 pts. :D Enjoy!
Attached File  Dig_Dug__arcade_gfx_infinite_lives__NTSC.bin   16KB   383 downloads

#1308003 2600 BERZERK more new mazes!

Posted by espire8 on Sat Jun 2, 2007 5:33 PM

Posted Image

Welcome to BERZERK ARCADE VE. It's the only title I can think of and I'm not sure if it's used already, if so just let me know. Anyway,this is really a hack of someone else's hack done five years ago by Mike Mika called BERZERK VE (voice enhanced). The atari 2600 original Berzerk code had several unique hacks done by many others -but nobody actually made any truely different mazes to this fun shooter, which is what I done here. All the mazes are now totaly redrawn with more complex patterns and the robots and player character have been reduced in size to make navigating the passageways easier. The humaniod's animation is all new too and the robot's very slightly. I have over 20 different maze designs although I can only include 4 in a single binary. I was thinking of separate bins with different mazes but I'll just start off with this for now.

Attached File  BERZERK_Arcade_VE.bin   16KB   557 downloads

I know plenty of people would like to see a complete 2600 version of berzerk that include features already accomplished by others such as diagonal shots by DEBRO, and exits that are blocked off on one side by supercat. And perhaps even programmer(s) who could tweak the code to include more mazes to explore, or even an atarivox version. Unfortunatly, I have no coding skills and I don't know if my efforts here will initiate anyone who does. It is my hope that it will.

Please enjoy my contribution to this hack that will hopefully, with the combined contribution of others, will work it's way towards a perfection of this great game for all to appreciate. :)


Edit: :!: I found an exit bug in the first posted binary and tried to fix it but it keeps coming back. I think it has to do with the humaniod now being shorter so I modified one of the mazes with an extra opening and left the bug in there as a hidden escape trick. After playing for some time I found it rather helpful though it's still a cheat. I'll let you figure this one out for yourself if you have'nt already down loaded the first bin. :D

All comments are welcomed and thanks for checking in!

#1174839 swords and serpents "end of game "

Posted by espire8 on Wed Nov 15, 2006 2:21 PM

Heh, I loved that game!
That was my favorite game for the old Intellivision!
I am pretty sure I beat it back in the early 80's, but, I can't remember if there was much of an ending!?

I hope someone here knows, because I would like to know too.

Try this Google post from 1998:

S&S Ending

I was frustrated by the ending as well, as you'll read in that post.

I know this is very late late info but I decided to post this for anyone who come across this tread looking for the final answer to that age old question.
I found this article while researching the game and found very funny --the reaction the original programer got from two desparate gamers. I can't really blame them. I might have gotten PO'ed myself if I spent my hard earned money as a kid on a game where the serpent's big secret were just the programer's initials :!:

It would be nice if a 2600 version of S&S were homebrewed with an actual dramatic endding!


Gary writes:

Posted ImageHey, I played Imagic's Swords & Serpents a lot, I mean really a lot. Was there an end to the game? All we ever found were 3 initials inside the dragons lair, that we assumed were the initials of the guy who wrote the game. Was that it? We always wonder if we missed something.

Thanks for any closure.

Brian P. Dougherty, creator of Swords & Serpents, tells us:

Posted Image SS_Lv4.GIF Yes, that was it.

Brian says that in 1982, a few months after the game was released, he was awakened by a phone call in the middle of the night. Two teenage boys were on the line. They had been playing Swords & Serpents for days on end, had worked their way repeatedly to the final level, but couldn't figure out how to defeat the dragon.

Brian's name was listed in the instructions, so the frustrated duo called information for Mountain View, California, home of Imagic, and asked if there was a Brian P. Dougherty listed. Getting the number, they called him immediately and begged for the secret of killing the dragon.

Sleepily, Brian confessed to them that there was no way to kill the dragon. He had run out of room in the cartridge, so there was no climactic battle, just uncovering the "treasure": his initials.

Brian says there were a few seconds of silence on the line, then the teenagers let loose with a string of obscenities. They called him every name in the book, then hung up.

Brian now has an unlisted number.