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Everything posted by alex_79

  1. Are those wires connected to the upper metal shell of the switches? In that case they're likely a replacement for the adhesive "static strips" meant to discharge static when operating the switches. If so, I'd leave them in place (and wire the power switch in the same way). Much better than Atari adhesive metal foil solution when you need to open the console for maintenance/repairs..
  2. I only played a few rounds of v0.7 so far, but I like the new difficulty settings. Normal and hard modes are challenging against the AI. I tend to do worse with longer race length, as I start to lose concentration and doing mistakes and I cannot catch up. Also the "superboost" arrows are an handicap for me, at least against the AI, as it is way better at catching them than I am.
  3. You can remove me from the draw. I'm a (happy!) Pluscart owner already as I got mine less than two weeks ago, so no need for another one.
  4. I welcome each change. 😀 I need a stronger AI, anyway, as I always win now. I'm using the green car, as I find more convenient to keep a joystick in the left port and use paddles on the right one. Don't know if that makes any difference for the AI skills.
  5. True, but I guess that's the same for the braking sound. Difficult to say which car refers to with 8 players.
  6. It's the braking sound for me. The sound effect itself is fine and would work well on a different kind of racing game, but with this game mechanics (and I guess it gest worse with more players), the result is a series of frequent but very short high pitch noises which get a bit annoying IMO. I'd prefer to simply hear the engine suddenly losing revs rather than a skidding sound when braking. I don't have a QuadTari, so I only tested with two sets of paddles connected directly. They are always correctly detected no matter the position of the pots, allowing to control the first 4 cars.
  7. This made me think that it's been quite a few years since the last AA label contest. I miss those...
  8. I played a bit last evening. The gameplay feels "right" to me already, so I find difficult to suggest any specific change to the parameters. Maybe it's best to post a few variations to compare? The AI seems well balanced too. I played several rounds and I finished the race in all possible positions. I'm using real hardware + CRT, so no input lag in my tests. Maybe you could have (optional, e.g. selected using a difficulty switch) some extra boost inversely proportional to the position, so it's easier to catch up making the race challenging until the end. A "bonus" of some kind might work too (this could be optional as well), like the power boost suggested by @azure. It should be short (single arrow), so it's difficult to catch. I prefer the audio of the previous version, without the brake sound. Autodetection works correctly, I can now control a single car without the QuadTari.
  9. What about refueling? This would involve a new "pit stop" zone on the track. On this zone pressing the button would brake, while releasing it would accelerate (to be able to restart after refueling). Deceleration should be greater than on normal "non boost" zones, and it should be possible to stop the car completely. When the car is stopped it should be refueld. This zone should be short, so that you would miss it if running too fast. Therefore it should be preceded by a long enough "non boost" zone to be able to reduce speed. There's not much room for a fuel gauge, maybe a simple indicator based on colors would suffice. (E.g. green,yellow,red). There are three scanlines without hblanks to the left of each track, before the lower curb that could be used for that.
  10. Yeah, sorry, after re-reading it, I realize my post is quite confusing... With "and/or" I mean "OR" (non-exclusive) And with INPTx "HIGH" or "LOW", I was actually referring to the logic level of the line, so I should really have written "bit 7 of INPTx". So if you're considering the value read from INPTx as a signed byte, replace "HIGH" with "negative" and "LOW" with positive. No mistake, just a brain fart from my part... As you say, if the cap for INPT0 is charged (negative value) after a few frames, then it means that you have a paddle directly plugged in, else you have a Quadtari. No need to check INPT1.
  11. Late reply as I see you already posted a rom with auto-detection in place. I will try the rom later today. According to the description in the other thread, only one line (pin 9, that is INPT1/INPT3) is used as a select line, and it's connected to a small pullup resistor. Pin 5 (INPT0/INPT2) from the Atari is not connected at all. So detection in this case could work like this: - set the DUMPPORTS bit in VBLANK to discharge the caps - wait a little (the caps discharge very quickly, but not instantly. wait one or two scanlines to be sure) - clear DUMPPORTS - wait a few scanlines (just enough to let the caps charged by the small pullup) - read paddles - if INPT0 is HIGH and/or INPT1 is LOW, there's no QuadTari in the left port - if INPT2 is HIGH and/or INPT3 is low, there's no QuadTari in the right port - wait enough time to allow a standard paddle set to max resistance (1 Mohm) to charge the caps (I think this would take a few frames, like 2 or 3) - read paddles again, and use the same conditions as above to check the presence of the quadtari. The reason for checking the inputs twice is to avoid false positives in case of one paddle knob turned to minimum resistance and the other one turned to max. In theory the unused line could be connected to only one port of the QuadTari, so you could only use 2 paddles in total (from two separate sets) with it, so not very useful. And IIRC from the discussion in the other thread, pin 5 on the QuadTari ports is connected to +5V to allow powering a genesis controller.
  12. One of the paddle lines has a pullup resistor, the other one is diconnected, so after you clear VBLANK bit D7, one line will rapidly charge, while the other one will stay low.
  13. Looks good already. I like the engines sounds too. Do you plan to add auto detection so that it will work without a QuadTari too? Or even with "half" of it, that is connected only to one of the ports ("DuoTari"?) I don't have one and currently I control 2 cars at once with each paddle.
  14. If someone doesn't have 4 sets of paddles, Track and Field controllers could be thrown in the mix too. The buttons seem to be far away enough that two people can play using a single controller.
  15. I think that PAL shows washed out colors much more than NTSC (which should look similar to the emulator). In fact PAL has half the vertical color resolution, as the TV blends the color information of two adjacent scanlines (actually, with interlaced video they're not adjacent, as the blending happens on consecutive scanlines of the same field). You can easily see this if you fill an area alternating scanlines between two hues, but using the same luma value. On PAL, you'll get a perfectly solid color, instead of striped. So when displaying the menu, PAL mixes the background and text colors twice: on each frame, because the display is made alternating colors on each scanlines, and also because of the phosphor blending of the interleaved consecutive frames. The Blargg TV effects used in Stella are designed for NTSC and don't emulate this PAL artifact. SECAM is even more complicated, as alternating different colors on subsequent scanlines produce a totally different hue.
  16. 😄 I know... I'm just not familiar with the wiki/tiki syntax yet and I didn't want to mess up the front page.
  17. alex_79

    RetroN 77

    No, the R77 is a computer running the Stella emulator.
  18. Mhmm... Something's not quite right. I erroneously got credit for "Playfield Timing" which is by Micheal Rideout (@SeaGtGruff) instead. And, there's no need to credit me at all. I feel that might cause people to refrain from correcting, editing or rewrite that page, which is the point of a wiki. There's always the page history if someone wants to see who contributed.
  19. I added a brief description about the Vertical Delay. I always found the Stella Programmer's Guide a bit confusing about this. Maybe it could be referenced when pages about the VDELxx registers are done. Perhaps my bad english will be an incentive for someone to register and fix it, and then add content to the tiki...
  20. Thank you! Compiling right now...
  21. The download links don't seem to work here. I get a 404 error for all of them except for the R77 one.
  22. related to this: https://atariage.com/forums/topic/167173-what-does-the-game-select-switch-actually-do/ https://atariage.com/forums/topic/192031-stella-35-released/?do=findComment&comment=2435332
  23. I think it would be better to also set SWCHA and SWCHB to 0, because, as i wrote in the other thread, those registers will keep the last value stored to them and use it when set to output. It's unlikely that this would cause issues, but in theory a game might (rightfully) rely on the fact that they're zero.
  24. You can write to SWCHA and SWCHB even if they're set as input and the RIOT "remembers" the value when you set them as output. That's one of those occurrences where the "Stella Programmer's Guide" describes the intended usage rather than the actual behaviour. In the 2600, port B is connected to the console switches, so it was meant to be used as input only. But that's a standard 6532, and the port is fully configurable. The 3 unused bits can be safely set as output and used as 3 bits of memory. "Combat" does that for example. Technically, you can set also the other bits as output, and reading them will always return the programmed value and not the position of the switches, but it has not been determined if it's safe for the chip in case you set a bit "high" while the connected switch is closed, that means the pin is shorted to ground. I remember this was discussed a few years ago in the forums.
  25. No, the reset sequence requires to pull RIOT pin 34 (/RES) low: On a 2600 this only happens when powering on the console. E.g.: this is from the 6-switch console schematic: After turning on the console, the /RES pin will initially be "low" until the capacitor (C220, charged through the resistor R217), will reach the voltage for a logic "1". Then it will just stay "high" as long as the console is powered on.
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