Jump to content
  • entries
    36
  • comments
    31
  • views
    70,697

About this blog

Jeff's Blog

Entries in this blog

 

Small update for VisualbB

I can't believe it's been over a year since I last touched visualbB. I haven't abandoned the project, was just waiting for batari to release the final DPC+ kernel before making any futher changes. Since Oct 2011 I've only made a couple of tweaks.   1. Support for the titlescreen kernel 1.1 There was a bug reported here when using the wizard with the 1.1 kernel and the DPC+ kernel. In the original titlescreen 1.0 you needed to declare a constant scorepointers = player1x. The code generator

jwierer

jwierer

 

Changes to visualbB to support bB 1.1d

It looks like a number of folks have updated to bB 1.1d (grab this updated .exe as well). The previous WIP builds won't work as well so here is another WIP that you can play with. I recommend upgrading to 1.1d if you want to use this because I am not sure if some of the tools are compatible with the earlier bB 1.1 builds, primarly the DPC+ kernel which changes a bit with each release.   What's New? When printing code, page numbers are added to the bottom of each page - somebody requested t

jwierer

jwierer

 

More changes to support bB 1.1b Beta

I've updated visualbB to support the latest WIP version ofthe bB 1.1b compiler. Actually I did this a month ago, but have been a bit busy to take the time to post it. You can read more about bB1.1 from batari'sblog.   Here are some of the changes in visualbB Build 562: Updated the Titlescreen editor so that you can insert kernels. This will make it easier to modify where before you had to delete and start over if you wanted to change the order. Fixed a problem with long names and spaces

jwierer

jwierer

 

Creating a multi-colored title screen in bB

This is the last in a series of blog posts on creating different title screens using the title screeen kernel in bB. As with the previous tutorials, you'll need to be using a test version of visualbB. As with the previous two examples you can use the 48x1 mini kernel to create the effect of a multi-colored titlescreen. This is actually achieved through the flickering of colors. In this case, using a red and a light blue when blended appears white(ish). You can play with the colors in step 2

jwierer

jwierer

 

Creating an Animated Title Screen in in bB

If you're reading this, then you've already downloaded this test version of visualbB, if not you're not going to get this to work! One of the nice features of the title screen kernel is you can use the 48x1 mini kernels to create an animated component of your titlescreen. This example uses the ex3-animation images included with the titlescreen kernel. 1.Launch the Titlescreen editor 2.Add 5 new kernels with the following settings a.Kernel = draw_48x1_2 i. Image = gear logo.png ii. Set the b

jwierer

jwierer

 

Creating a Scrolling Hi-res Title Screen in bB

If you have not already you should download the latest test version of visualbB and walk through creating a basic titlescreen first. Now that you have the basics down, this will help you create a title screen that includes a scrolling element. This example uses the ex2-scroller images included with the titlescreen kernel download package.   1. Launch the Titlescreen wizard 2. Change the score font to RETROPUTER 3. Add 6 new kernels with the following settings a. Kernel = Draw_96x2_1

jwierer

jwierer

 

Using the Title Screen Kernel Wizard

The Titlescreen Kernel is a custom assembly module that allows you to display a high quality titlescreen in your batari Basic game, without having to write any assembly code yourself. This will walk you through creating the most basic titlescreen. If you want to learn more about how this works, or creating a titlescreen by hand, please read the documentation included with the titlescreen Kernel download.   The following steps will walk you through building a basic titlescreen using the inclu

jwierer

jwierer

 

Bookmarking code

As your code grows it can difficult to easily navigate it. Bookmarks provide a convenient way to mark sections of code so you can quickly jump to that location. Here is a quick guide to using bookmarks:   Highlight a section of code. Right Click, Select – Add Bookmark. Bookmarks will be added to the new bookmark section within the Project Explorer Alternatively, you can manually enter a search term and use the add to place it into the bookmark list. Bookmarks are saved so when you reo

jwierer

jwierer

 

Checking code syntax with bblint

bBlint is a useful tool written by RevEng which will do basic code checking such as: unindented commands, indented "end", unmatched for and next counts, and incorrect "end" counts. Now VisualbB can be integrated with bblint. Simply download bblint from here and unzip to the same folder as visualbb.exe. When detected, the following menu will be enabled.     Additionally, when compiling bblint will be run and report back any errors discovered before launching the compiler providing an ea

jwierer

jwierer

 

VisualbB Changes to support bB 1.1 Beta

Batari has started to release early versions of the bB1.1 compiler that includes support for the new DPC+ kernel. While this is likely to go through a number of language iterations, I started to add initial support for folks that want to start creating new sprites. You can read more about 1.1 from batari's blog.   Here are some of the changes in visualbB:   The most important change is that player data is stored right-side-up in the DPC+ kernel, so the sprite editor was modified. When y

jwierer

jwierer

 

Creating a Custom Title Screen for Failsafe 7800

In the fall of 2009 I took some time off from programming and hence my blog as I was traveling heavily for work. When I got back I started to work on VisualbB again by adding some new music and sound editing. I wanted to post my Failsafe editor for some time, but had to wait until the Bob was done tweaking it as the editor would break when various changes were made. Now that Failsafe is available for purchase, I figured it was safe to publish the editor.   Since I created this primarily as

jwierer

jwierer

 

Failsafe Editor for Atari 7800

It's been a couple of months since I've posted to my blog. Part of the reason is I've been traveling a lot for work, but the bigger reason is the project I've been working on hasn't been public. I like to be trustworthy so I haven't said anything, but appears the cat's out of the bag on Pacman Plus's newest project for the Atari 7800 so I'm assuming I am free to discuss my contribution For those that haven't heard about Countermeasure 2 Failsafe for the Atari 7800 you can read about it here.

jwierer

jwierer

 

Creating Custom 7800 Cartridges

If you're like me I like to have a physical cartridge made for hacks and homebrews that never get put onto a cart. For the 7800 enthusiasts that can be a bit challenging as custom 7800 boards are not as easily accessible compared to the 2600 and 5200 Pixels Past boards available in the Atari Age Store (when open). Fear not, for most games 32K or less it's pretty easy to hack up an existing 7800 cartridges to take an EPROM. External memory and larger roms are bit tricker, but just require you

jwierer

jwierer

 

Pacman Construction Set - Snow Day Hack

I was playing with Pac Pollux and got to thinking about how the ghosts were all the same colors. Sure enough this was a hack of Bob's original Pacman hack so a quick comparison of the two in Hack-o-matic 3 exposed all the locations for the ghost colors. After that I started looking for other colors by searching for LDA, <immediate> where immediate is the color I want to find. In HOM 3 this is just a hex search for A9, and the two bit hex code. A couple hours later I had most of the color l

jwierer

jwierer

 

Ms. Pacman - Fruit Locations

After playing upside down Ms. Pacman (see this blog post) i was a little disappointed with where the fruits would appear because they were still set to the original tunnel locations. If that locations happened to be a maze it would warp though it - awkward, but ok. If it had some empty space followed by a maze part the fruit would appear, bounce into the wall and then disappear off into space and you'd never get to eat - not the desired result. Based on some additional technical knowledge I

jwierer

jwierer

 

Ms. Pac-man - Flip It!

I was wondering what the game play of Ms. Pac-man would be if the mazes were flipped. So I started recreating the mazes, but that seemed ridiculous tedious so I added a new feature to my Pac-man editor that would allow you to flip items vertically and horizontally. With that I was able to flip each of the mazes, all the graphics and the title screen.   Came across a couple issues when creating this. Ghost Pen: The Ghost pen isn't really located in the center of the maze and it can't be mo

jwierer

jwierer

 

7800 Pac-man Construction Set - Jr. Pac Title

Editing Jr. Pac-man is a little different. First of all, there are no shared portions (thank you Bob), and it is nearly contiguous memory locations. The best way to describe it is reading in a row of 17 bytes in reverse order and drawing it on screen. There are three "sections" if you will that you read in so it does make it a little tricky to decode to an editor since you want to see it all in correct order. Anyway it was really hot yesterday so I played with this until the fireworks came a

jwierer

jwierer

 

7800 Pac-man Construction Set - Editing the Title

First of all Happy Independence day to everybody in the United States of America!   I've known where the title screen is stored for a long time, but never bothered editing it, because using my sprite editor (see earlier post) it's kind of hard to really envision what a 64x30 title graphic looks like. With the non-Jr Pac-man games, you read a nibble, draw 2 pixels, shift down a row, read a nibble, draw 2 pixels. I expected when I drew it on screen I would see a single contiguous stream of data

jwierer

jwierer

 

7800 Pac-man Construction Set - Vertical Tunnels

A little background on tunnel support in the various Pac-man roms. Pacman supports horizontal tunnels and Jr. Pacman supports vertical tunnels (you'll see that in the Teddy Bear maze). I did some digging around for the various Pacman variants that Bob released over the years following Pacman. Luckily they all have the same rom locations for mazes and graphics so they work in my editor!   While looking at Hangly Man's 2nd level I noticed something interesting...     Yes that's a verti

jwierer

jwierer

 

7800 Pac-man Construction Set - Changing text

One thing that had been bothering me is that after changing the graphics for the fruits the text was wrong. Searching through the rom using HOM3 didn't yield anything useful. Finally I gave up and asked Bob how text is stored in the Pac-man games and as usual, he provided the necessary info for me to solve my problem - thanks Bob! (I probably should have just asked up front and saved myself a few hours)   As you probably already guessed, the text strings aren't stored using standard ASCII

jwierer

jwierer

 

7800 Pac-man Construction Set- Editing Graphics

Finally got around to adding the functionality to edit the graphics. For now it's just a fixed sized "tile" editor, but it does work so now you can change most aspects of the Pac-man series of games for the 7800. The only other thing I thought would be novel would be changing the number of start lives, but I am not sure I want to go through the effort of identifying where that is done.   You can assign "viewing" colors for the 2 bits (4 colors) for the tile editor. You can assign those colo

jwierer

jwierer

 

7800 Pac-man Construction Set- Viewing Graphics

I don’t know much about 7800 graphics so I started reverse engineering them in Hack-o-Matic III and Tile 'M   So far this is what I’ve discovered. Jr. Pac-man has a couple banks of sprites starting at 0x0 and 0x6000 both of length 0xF00. Each sprite is read left to right and rows are separated by 0x100 (256) bytes. Each Pixel is 2 bits so the first 2 bytes represents the first row. The 2 bit value determines which color in the palette is used. (00 = color0, 01 = color 1, 10 = color 2, 11

jwierer

jwierer

 

Unbeatable Pacman Mazes and Jr. Pac-man Plus?

Ran into an interesting problem this morning. Ever noticed that when you start a level it says "Ready" under the ghost pen? By writing and erasing that text it also erases any dots you may have placed in that region. The problem with that is that you can never eat those dots so it never counts them as being eaten and therefore the level can never be cleared For some reason this also affects the region above the ghost pen. This creates an non-editable zone (see picture).   Also apparentl

jwierer

jwierer

 

Jr. Miss Pac-man?

I was playing with my Pac-man Construction Set looking for bugs and got a little bit carried away. After spending another hour with Tile-Molester I came up with this Maze and graphic hack for Jr. Pac-man. The central parts of the mazes and colors should be familiar from Ms. Pac-man, Pac-man and Puck-man. The outer mazes are still parts of Jr-Pacman. The graphics are miniature versions of Ms. Pac-man.   Here is a screen shot Here is the binary. JRMSPAC_78.bin -Jeff

jwierer

jwierer

×
×
  • Create New...