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About this blog

Never thought I would ever do this!

Entries in this blog

 

RetroN 77 - FAIL?

I had a few hours to test the console and I must say, I am overall disappointed. Positives first: Very good HDMI output (it even remembers the last 16:9 or 4:3 setting, which is a surprise) Convenient form factor and nice design (though I wonder why the woodgrain is orange?) Convenient to use IF it works Very little lag The CPU seems powerful enough for newer Stella versions PAL ROMs work well too (though the picture is somewhat small for PAL50)

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Revision 2018

After participating in 2015 myself and therefore starting to watch it for the first time, the Revision demoparty has become a fixed date in my schedule. So I did spend Eastern watching the Revision 2018 via Twitch live stream (and YouTube for the too late events). And it was a blast again! Not all compos, but most of them. Besides the Oldschool compos, I mostly liked the ones where size is limited. If you want to watch any compo relive, go here. Please note that the entries are ordered by t

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Neutral line interruption! Beware!

Last Wednesday morning I smelled some burned rubber in the kitchen. But I was unable to detect the origin. A few minutes later, my whole flat lost power. Since all my fuses where on, I thought about a power loss in the building. But the light outside my building was OK. So I informed my landlord who send an electrician pretty immediately. Meanwhile my power had come back (and the smell too). The electrician checked my fuse box and electric meter and found... nothing! But he identified the orig

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Coke Zero - Revision 2015 Demo

A while ago I had some discussion with SvOlli about improving a part of his winning Bang! demo called "Snake Sprite". Initially he wanted to add more colors, but I thought more about removing the repositioning gaps. This seemed like something never done before inside a 48 pixel kernel, so I took the challenge. After making it possible, SvOlli suggested to integrate my little demo into a bigger mega demo. So I spiced up the demo a bit, scripted it into 4 parts and added some pompous demo text s

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

My CRT has died :(

Yesterday my good old 29" Sony Trinitron KV-X2901D CRT has died.   It has faithfully served me for about 20 years, for watching TV and developing all my Atari 2600 games.   R.I.P.   I will miss you.

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

IFA 1981

While doing some research on my Atari 2600, I came to IFA 1981. It was that exhibition were I first played a game of Asteroids on the Atari 2600. And a few weeks or (months?) later I bought them both.   On the very same show, I accidentally stepped by a booth were I watched something completely new to me too. At that time I did not know where this came from, but a few years later I found out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_pqvjfW9yHo&feature=player_detailpage   What I had watched was

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Tunnel game

Something I wrote this weekend inspired by the arcade game'Tunnel Hunt'. You can control the speed with the joystick (up/down).   Maybe I'll make a game out of this. Or maybe not.   EDIT: Here is how a turn may look like. Now fixed (v0.03)! Tunnel__v0.01_.bin Tunnel_001.zip Tunnel__v0.03_.bin

Guest

Guest

 

Hello blog world!

This is my first blog ever and probably will be the only one for quite a while. There is only one reason why I created it and I will show you... soon. Stay tuned!

Guest

Guest

 

THREE∙S (was: 2^11 (2048))

Getting first aware of the new hype around 2048 by this link, I started playing the game and immediately found myself wasting my time. Since it is obvious that the 2600 could pretty easily support this game, I soon started wonder how it could be presented on the Atari. There are little bells and whistles to the game. Besides some nice animation effects when moving and merging the numbers, there are only colors. For me these colors, combined with the very reduced and clean graphics and fonts

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Optimize data overlapping

During my work with Space Castle I have to manage quite a lot of graphic data. Especially the castle explosion is very big (currently 16 frames, each 5 blocks of 40 bytes = 3200 bytes) but there also is a lot of other graphic data needed for the various messages and the scores.   All data is compressed by overlapping the data blocks. For the explosion this was done by Chris before I took over from him. When Nathan asked me, if there is enough space for frames to improve the explosion,

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Logitech Squeezebox Radio

Since Logitech announced to stop further development of the Squeezebox series (the server is promised to continue, and you can update the firmware to their new UE system), the devices have become much cheaper lately. So I decided to buy myself a Squeezebox Radio (limited red edition incl. accupack) for 111€.       Yesterday it arrived and I have immediately started playing with it.   The device seems really powerful, but the software is lacking quite a lot. E

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Star Castle Developments

Since Chris is busy with his RL, I will continue his blog entry about Star Castle Developments here. Source code can be found here. Note: There are still some occasional glitches which I have to sort out. And maybe even a crash. So if you find one, please let me know. Especially if you can reproduce it. Attached is the final build from October 2015 and here the (never ending) DONE and TODO list: ; Explanation: ; - = open ; o = partially ; + = done ; ? = debatable ; x = cancell

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

After 9 years, my next PC

Looks like my new games take about as long as it takes to make me buy new hardware.   So I spend the last days to browse the Internet and magazines to select the components for my new PC. Didn't think this would be any fun anymore, but it turned out to be quite interesting. Today I finally ordered it, and it really felt good (hope this feeling stay when I build it together ).   For those who are interested in details: BitFenix Shinobi SB 3.0 Midi-Tower USB 3.0 black

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Paradroid Transfer game

After some time, I started to wonder about Paradroid again. The droid transfer game looks like a nice challenge. The kernel looks pretty busy, the level creation and evaluation seem complicated too.   I started with the kernel and soon found out, that a simple score mode kernel (color #0 left, color #1 right) won't work here due to the so called "blockers" with the opponent's color. Those are displayed on the "wrong" side. After some experimenting with variable mid-scanline color chang

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Star Castle brainstorming

With the recent thread about the never to be released, new Star Castle homebrew, I first tried to understand from the available videos and screen shots, how it is done.   The rings and gun are drawn using the 48 pixel routine, using large, precalculated ROM blocks. I described that a bit more detailed that in the very thread. All other objects are probably drawn with the ball (though I am not 100% sure here).   The result looks pretty impressive, but there is one pretty obvious difference f

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Elite-like Line Drawing

Inspired by this blog entry, I spend spend some time with the line drawing part of Elite.   Since there is no double-buffer (like Elite), I experimented with 3 ways of line drawing: 1. Clearing the whole screen and then drawing all lines. 2. Plotting pixels with XOR, erasing the old and immediately redrawing the new line one by one. 3. Plotting pixels with XOR, erasing all lines first and then redrawing all new lines.   The constant clearing time in variat

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Yello

I had almost forgotten how good this music is. If you like this, make sure to check out your their new album!   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJFShE1VfEc   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqU_0xpILIU   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wn9FevDdcLU&   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TjoQiqY9MN4   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8sFupDAwvo

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Time flies!

Exactly ten years ago, I made my first Thrust post to the [stella] mailing list. Thrust_v0_1.bin

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Atari 2600 Homebrew/Hacks AA store rankings

Homebrews Synthcart Lady Bug Thrust+ Platinum Medieval Mayhem Star Fire Seawolf 2005 Minigame Multicart Skeleton+ Conquest of Mars Fall Down Climber 5 Marble Craze Go Fish! Strat-O-Gems Deluxe Gunfight Crazy Balloon Dark Mage Oystron SWOOPS! Testcart Colony 7 Space Instigators Hunchy II A-VCS-tec Challenge Space Treat Del

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Ti Sento

I just had the "pleasure" to listen to the terrible remake of a better unnamed trash musician. So I dug out the gorgeous original from Matia Bazar. Enjoy!    

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

When walls come tumbling down

Ok, it was "only" a big rack.   Yesterday morning, just a few minutes before I had to get up, I woke up by a loud crack noise followed by a big rumble right beside me.   When I switched on the light, I saw this. Sometimes collecting computer magazines can be dangerous...   EDIT: New picture I made when I cleaned the room. Lock at the crack of the desk standing right besides my head!

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Source code found in ROMs

I was a bit bored this weekend, so I had a closer look to some games. A lot of games, especially from Taiwan, contain garbage data, which is unsed by the game itself. Often this garbage contains traces from the game development, sometimes even snippets of source code. In this entry I will post some source code findings.

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

 

Sudoku Kernel

After a longer break, I finally took the time and decided for a kernel. Many thanks to John for providing the basic idea of it. SudokuKernel.bin SudokuGridKernel.bin

Thomas Jentzsch

Thomas Jentzsch

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