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About this blog

My thoughts on everything.

Entries in this blog

 

Fly in the city

So I'm at the 50% mark on Frank the Fruit Fly. I started this project in July of 2018, so it only took me a year and a half to get to this point. Yesterday I worked on the level 5 intro. The plan is to have 8 levels total. Level 5 will take place in the city. Which city? A big one. I guess any city you want. Your typical metropolis with alleys and skyscrapers. It will be at night so there will be less people around that want to try to squish you. I worked to make sure it went from level 4 to her

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

47 Meatballs - March 2020

So thefarside.com is nothing more than the old comics. Disappointed, I decided to make my own like-comics. I just drew three for today for March 2020. (I usually make comics one month in advance.) Longtime readers of this blog may have heard of my on-line comic "47 Meatballs." Well, it's returning. Every Monday starting March 16, I will put an online comic on the website. I would like some feedback. Mainly on how big the letters in the tic-tac-toe game are and if they're legible because it's a m

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Two-colored trunk

I decided since I had the room, to add a "dummy" color to stand in to the first color that was being black. The palette showed the dummy color as the first one. The dummy color was a hot pink, which I used to color the tree trunks. Then I made sure the original tree trunk color was still in the picture (or else it wouldn't show up in the palette), I put it it to the extreme left, and it doesn't show up in the game. I changed the colors to 4-bit and changed the hot pink to a different shade of br

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

One colored trunk

I decided to make the images that show up during the Running Zyx game 4-bit. They were 8-bit. Although I saved a little room, the Jaguar decided to replace the darker tree trunk color with black. No matter what I did, everything I tried, and it still showed up black. So then I got the idea that if it wants to be black and I can't change it, I'll change the trunk color to the other color that was displaying fine. Then it can be black all it wants but not show up at all. So that's what I did. And

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Zyx - running Zyx

Last time I looked at the Zyx code, the Running Zyx game was effectively broken. After a few hours this morning, trying to take my mind off of the fact that I had to not eat for my blood test, I finally made it work again. I added a vut that comes running at you from the opposite direction. In the end, you'll have to avoid the vuts and get the bananas. If you get hit by a vut or miss a banana, you'll lose a life. The game speeds up every ten bananas you get until it is at its fastest speed at 6,

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Lord of the Flies

I found this SD card laying on my desk. I wondered what was on it. So I looked at it on my computer. Just some old Game Boy game files. This is what prompted me to begin making a new Game Boy game. It's called "Flies." Remember that Mario Paint game where you swat at flies? That's this. All I have so far is a title screen with some music. I discovered I had a Frank the Fruit Fly demo for Game Boy on my computer, so I'm using that to build on. I think Game Gear games are prettier, don'

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Rumble in the Jungle

Worked some more on Hamburgers 2. I thought of an idea for a place for the action to take place. The jungle. Here is a picture. I had a horrible time trying to change the red numbers from green since they were green on level 1. As it turned out, the code for changing the color was in the wrong place.

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Spewing out air

It begins with the letter p. But it's not what you think. It's pipes. Last time we left Frank, he was in the middle of the ocean. I had finally gotten the randomness working on Chris the Cranberry but it wasn't doing it random enough, so I quit and started to think about what I can do in Frank the Fruit Fly. So I was thinking and it came to me. I was thinking about water levels in Mario and Kirby games and I got to thinking about this level in Kirby's Dream Land 2 where there are pipes spewing o

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

A two-track mind

So after sleeping for about 15 hours yesterday, I decided to get up. I could have slept longer since I have no life. I could sleep all day and all night just waiting to die. But that wouldn't be very exciting. Anyway, once I woke up, I began to work on Chris the Cranberry for the Odyssey2 again. I was trying to get a second track in the game, but with no luck.   Until I tried some idea I had. Why not make all four tracks just one giant data table and put different starting and ending p

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

A different cranberry

So all this working on games involving cranberries made me think of the one I started on the Odyssey 2. The reason I quit working on it is because it wasn't very exciting. But I had an idea for it: Make a track that has randomly generated obstacles. So I worked. All night I worked. I figured out how to make it so that I can have tracks of different lengths without extra code. I was having trouble using the joystick to select a track number. So I decided to move that to the keyboard. I spent a fe

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Scores

So I finally got the score working in the cranberry game. I also got it to display playfields and sprites simultaneously. The sprites can move and interact with the playfields not just on the tree screen, but every screen I wish to display playfields on. All the extra code that is needed is the playfield data and when to draw it. There's a timer that adds two at a time and while the result looks rather blocky like a bB game, it is an assembly game. The bottom of the screen was making

atari2600land

atari2600land

Stupid score

Stupid score

So my Cranberry game decided to make the score all crappy looking. I tried EVERYTHING. I tried sleep statements everywhere, I tried lowering them and upping them. I tried adding garbage code to make the game bigger in lots of places, but nothing works. It still does the same thing. Why does this always happen to me? I work on something all proud and then bam. Some stupid thing happens and screws everything up. I might as well just stop coding altogether if the stupid computer doesn't want to pla

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Don't lean on the electric fence

I was working on my cranberry game last night. I couldn't shut my mind off and just go to sleep. I have trouble with that. I want to be awake doing stuff, not laying there trying to go to sleep. I put in a new screen: In this one, Craig needs to go through without touching the electric walls. If he does, he'll lose health, so it's best not to. But upon testing, I found that the scanline jumps to 263 when the screen changes to screen #2, so I tried Andrew Davies's vector code. It works

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

776

After a long night of coding, I only got about 10 hours of sleep last night.   I was trying to free up some more room in the cranberry game. I noticed that I was using the same code over and over again. But deleting that extra code meant changing the way "craig" looked on the title screen. It now looks like this: All other efforts done this morning yielded stuff that looked like crap with blank lines in between the red. So I'm going with this. I tried to sleep at about 11 p.

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

694

That is the number of bytes I have left for a 2k game. So if I want a huge epic adventure for the Atari 2600 (don't we all?), the time will come (and soon!) to need to learn how to make 4k games. Then 8k games. Perhaps if I get the hang of it I can make this a 64k game. I guess the sky is the limit, although I do want this to be able to be played in one sitting. So now I made a new title screen. This was a nightmare. I needed a whole bunch of seemingly useless code repeated over and o

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

4k quickly

I have 2 screens in, a title screen, and now I only have 800 bytes left of a 2k game. For the scope of what I want to do, I think I'll need at least 16k of space. I was looking at the Lord of the Rings prototype and it was only 8k. Adventure is 4k. How did they pull that off?   So anyway, I made this title screen. Press fire and Craig will show up. Move to the right and I added in two trees. This was especially hard since I wanted to keep Craig in so he could interact with t

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Craig on 26OO

Or should I say...   This is Craig the Cranberry: I'm starting a new project which will (hopefully) be an exercise in learning 4k Atari 2600 program making. But if I fail (I have a knack for it), I'll just make it 2k. I could keep going with the Channel F version, but then I thought the only person who can make Channel F games right now is e5frog, and he's already busy with my Trimerous project. So it's best not interrupt him with this. Besides, Craig won't be finished

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Hamburgers En Route To Switzerland 2 - demo

I was having a really hard time in Video Game Sage forums posting a YouTube clip of my game in action. Let's try it here:   How odd. I had to make the link be not a link with Notepad and then copy and paste the Notepad text into here. Just like in that other forum. Well, anyway, this is level 1 of my new game. I like how it's going so far, but it still needs something so it's not so repetitive. If you'd like to play it, you can download it since I attached it. If you play it,

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Hard sound

Who knew it was going to be so hard? I composed a .psg file like I always do for Game Gear games. This time I made a song for the boss part of the game. So I went to put it in the game's code and I kept getting bizarre times when the music just would not play. Then it played but stopped when you died. The odd thing about this problem was that the sound effects played normally the whole time (channel 2). It was just channels 0 and 1 that weren't working correctly. I have no idea how I fixed it, b

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Stomach aches.

I tried. Last time we left Frank the fruit fly, a whale ate him. I was going to have a screen of Frank going through the digestive system of the whale. But I had to give up because it was too complicated. So before I went to bed, I thought of an idea of a screen: Why not just skip the digesting and go right to the whale pooping Frank out? I woke up the next morning and began coding. A few hours later, I had my other screen finished. It's too bad I couldn't do the idea of the other one. What ange

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Stupid blinking score

I sat there for a few hours trying to make the score not blink when you die. I went back a few versions to see if it always did that. No, it didn't. But what changed? After a few hours of trying to fix internal stuff like turning the screen on and off, when suddenly I found the problem: The Game Gear's limitations was to blame. You can't put 8 or more sprites on a single vertical line. That's what was happening when the burger was going down really far. So I made it stop a little bit upwards and

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

HERTS2 resurrected

So after a whole bunch of hours spent working on my game I gave up on, I think I have it in a playable state where it won't crash on you. It does, however, still show the number 4 and a little bit of garbage, but that's out of the range of the Game Gear screen (so that's mainly why I make Game Gear games instead of SMS games, I don't know why garbage tiles come up!) The problem was collision detection outside the Game Gear's visible screen.   I have made a boss. You must shoot the boss

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

I give up again

This time I have decided to give up on Hamburgers En Route to Switzerland 2. There is something in the boss fight that causes death when it doesn't run into anything and makes the game start all over again. So I've decided to save the torture and just give up on it. Just what I need in my life is more torture.

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

Palette change

So I took a stab at redesigning the hamburger as well. This is what I came up with: I should note that looking at this picture, I should probably change the lunar surface so the score is easier to see. And this is my palette now: The second color in the palette is reserved for the score, and I can change it on the fly to whatever I need to to get the score visible. I had to put in every color for the rest of the sprites (which are not visible in the game) because the progra

atari2600land

atari2600land

 

I need design help

So I was perusing eBay. I came across a Game Gear game: PGA Tour Golf II. I wanted the very last version, so I thought for a minute or two trying to remember the name of the website I wanted to visit. Finally, Digital Press popped into my head. (Do I have Alzheimer's?) So I went there and I realized I wanted PGA Tour Golf '96. (I have a thing for the later games in a console's life for some reason.) I searched and found a copy for <$5. It was from one of those people who throw junk that isn't

atari2600land

atari2600land

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