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Andrew Davie

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Posts posted by Andrew Davie

  1. quote:

    Originally posted by -^Cro§Bow^-:





    So..um...which one is number #74?


    hehe..just kidding...Glad to see you got them all in.


    BTW: if each one is internally serial numbered...where is this at? On the rom..in the rom code? What?



    Serial numbers are IN the ROM code. Thus, I did 100 different assembles to generate 100 ROMs for Randy, emailed them all to him, and he burned 100 ROMs, one from each binary file. Thus, all Special Edition cartridges are different in the binary contents.

  2. quote:

    Originally posted by Blackjax:

    I know it's -way- too late to try to get one of these now, but can you post some pictures for us to drool over?


    Great game btw, didn't play it until the label contest and got hooked instantly!



    Producing the Special Edition has been an interesting experience for me. The logistics of arranging 100 cartridges, boxes, a label competition, manual artwork and writeup, etc., CD production and communicating with people on the preorder list has kept me really busy. Really busy. Just handling emails alone is taking hours per day.


    There are few things I've learned, and a few things I'd have done differently. But overall, things have gone pretty smoothly.


    The dropout rate (people who preordered but declined to purchase when the time came) has been very low (just 4), but the number of people responding AT ALL has probably only been about 70%. This is good for those who are on the preorder list, but haven't been made an offer yet. I haven't tallied the numbers exactly, but it appears to me that there will be 10 or so additional positions freed up (after accounting for all current orders), so if you thought it was too late - it's not!


    I am offering the Special Edition at a flat-rate $60 (that includes insured economy-air delivery to anywhere in the world), for those curious as to the price.


    The cartridges all arrived this morning (all 100!) from Randy Chihfield of Hozer Video Games. I wholeheartedly recommend Randy - his build quality appears excellent, he was most accomodating with regard to my requests, and the cartridges arrived on-time and safely. I've taken a snapshot - this is the last time that all 100 special edition cartridges will be seen in the same spot! Note the small sticker on each - this is because each is individually serial-numbered in the ROM itself, so they have to be identified for insertion into the correct box.


    David Exton (the label genius) is doing a bit of line-art for the manual, too, so once that is ready the boxes will start rolling out the door. That should be at the end of this week. I am staggering delivery (in the order of payment received) as materials and funds roll in.







    [ 01-20-2002: Message edited by: Andrew Davie ]

  3. quote:

    Originally posted by ATARIPITBULL:

    I think dave did a great job on his label and should win, but just like some of the other people have already said, I too liked my own labels and I hope that Hozer would be nice to us designers and let us buy copies of the game,(After the 100 special editions are made), with our own labels like they did for us on the gunfight contest.



    Though I cannot prevent people putting their own labels on Qb cartridges, my preference as author is to see Qb sold with official labels only. That way *I* know what's out there. If you really want your own label, you can buy/make a Qb cartridge and affix whatever you desire.


    As I said, that's my preference. I'm not about to sue anyone affixing a non-standard label, but I would hope people would respect my request.

  4. Now that the contest for the Qb labels is over, I have everything needed to start shipping the Special Edition. Consequently I have emailed all those on the preorder list (who are guaranteed a copy) with an offer to purchase.


    The offer includes the following specification...



    Contents of the special edition are


    1) A custom-made wooden box. This box was produced for me, to my

    specification, by a local sheltered workshop (at great expense, I might

    add). I decided that it would be A GOOD THING to support these guys by

    giving them some work. They've done a fine job - and although not terribly

    sophisticated in design/style, I'm quite pleased with the results. Each box

    is hand made, and comes with squares of Tasmanian woods affixed to the top

    (Huon Pine, King William, etc) representing the tableaux of the game during

    play. Boxes are individually numbered from 1 to 100.


    2) A CD-ROM containing

    a) Multiple binaries of QB during development

    b) Archive of emails/messages related to the deveopment of the game

    c) Multiple source-code snapshots of the game

    d) Actual final source code, in buildable form, of the game as used

    for the special edition (not available elsewhere)

    e) Archives of the [stella] list, related to the game production

    f) Tools required for Atari 2600 development (pending approval by

    copyright owners)

    g) Copy of Z26 Atari 2600 emulator and full source code - allows

    binaries to be played on PC

    h) Images of all the labels from the Qb competition


    3) A manual containing

    a) Fully commented hardcopy printout of the game code

    b) Retro-style game-blurb done by an 'industry veteran' (not me!)

    who actually did this stuff professionally back in the early '80s!

    c) Post-mortem of the game development, and a personal history of

    the game.


    4) Hand-numbered and signed cartridge containing an individually

    serial-numbered binary of Qb. This binary is a special release, having some

    minor visual improvements and refinements which are not present in the

    regular edition. Each cartridge binary has the serial number as part of the

    ROM image, so all 100 are unique. The cartridge comes with a label as shown

    in the competition, and each label is hand-numbered (1-100). I will sign

    the label if you request it (though I think it would look better without my

    signature). If you'd like me to sign the box/manual, that's fine - just




    If you have previously been told you are in the top 100, then you should have received an emiail from me. If you have NOT, then your position is in danger, and you should contact me ([email protected]) as soon as possible.




  5. Qb Label Contest Winners


    Finally, what you've all been waiting for! Here are the winners of the Qb Label Contest!


    1st Place, David Exton #1




    There's something about David's interpretation of the game which immediately 'clicked' for me. The overall style is, of course, extremely beautiful - but the joyful personality of the 'Qb guy', and rendering of the jeans and sneakers just as I'd envisaged them - well, that pretty much ensured that this one had to be the winner.


    It wasn't easy, though - I had to think about it for a fair while. For the longest time, this one...


    2nd Place, Chris Johnson #6




    ...was my favourite. Yes, I know it's done with clip-art, and it borrows heavily from other designs (eg: Thrust) in terms of look-and-feel. But again, the guy is wearing jeans and sneakers, and I really like the overall feel of this one. I've done my own 'playing around' variation of this, where I swapped the green monster guy for an octopus - perhaps I'll post that if there's enough interest I may end up using this for the regular edition, if Chris approves.


    Chris's submission #5 delighted me, as the original genesis of the game had some roots in the sliding tile game, which Chris has used to divide the label. If Chris had used a nicer image for this one, I'd have had a much more difficult choice. But I liked the concept (and yes, the recursive ones, too) that I thought I'd just give a special mention.


    I had enormous difficulty choosing third, but felt that it had to be awarded to...



    3rd Place, Cristiana Yambo #2




    I was very taken by this effort, and liked very much the clever way that the tableaux subtly spelled the Qb title. Clearly this submission took a lot of work - but nonetheless is very 'clean' and 'simple' in final presentation.


    Any of these (and many of the others) would have been perfect for labels for any production game - all in my opinion far superior to most '2600 labels of the Atari's heyday. I feel somewhat abashed, having to turn down such wonderful efforts - but would like to include every label submitted in the special edition CD documentation. So, if you do not want your submission included on the CD, please contact me.





    Thank you to all participants. Would the winners please contact me (at [email protected]) with their names and postal addresses, so that I can arrange for their prizes to be sent ASAP.


    Once again, thanks to Albert and the AtariAge crew/site for their hosting of the competition. So that's it, all over! Now I have chosen the winners it is time to get the Special Edition out the door! I'll be making a short announcement about that on the board shortly.






  6. Qb Label Top ... uh.... 8!


    Here are the 8 labels I like the most. 8 because that's the message board limit for images in a post. These are not in any particular order, and do not define the winners of the competition. The final 3 winners will be announced tomorrow. I'm having a hard time choosing, as you can all imagine. Many thanks to everyone who has entered; I'm sorry you can't all win, but I truly enjoyed all the great designs!




















    So, just another day, please, whilst I select the winning 3.





  7. Thank you to everyone who entered, and a big thank-you to the staff at AtariAge for their hosting and hard work managing the competition.


    I have narrowed my favourites down to about 10 entries, now that I've seen them all, but haven't yet selected a winner.


    I will announce the winner, and 2nd and 3rd places, within 24 hours.




  8. quote:

    Originally posted by jahfish:

    would there be a possibility to extend the sets to 125? for all the label creators?



    Nope. It's set to 100, and that's all there will ever be. Also, I don't plan to have a different label on each. The winning label (or slight modification) will be used on all. The others will probably be included on the CD accompanying the special edition, unless there are objections from the label owners, in which case those particular labels will NOT be included.




  9. quote:

    Originally posted by rick weis:

    Andrew you could use more then one submission for the labels 2 at 50 each 4 at 25 each... (Hummm... then i would want one of each!!) never mind Andrew BAD IDEA!!!



    Hell, I don't need many more entries before I can have a different label on every one of the special edition units


    My favourite keeps changing from day to day, so don't think that you can't better what's already there. There's definitely no unbeatable winner there, yet! But wow, there are some outstanding entries - beyond my wildest expectations. Thanks to Albert for all the hard work maintaining the comp, too.


    Well, I'm off to hunt some Kiwis. Apparently they're lurking hereabouts.




  10. quote:

    Originally posted by Eric:

    I'm starting to pitty Andrew - he may have a harder time selecting the winning label than programming the game!

    It's not only the quantity, but also the quality of the submissions ... from highly professional to funky, llamasoft-style



    Yes, it's already a VERY tough choice. Couldn't be happier, though

  11. quote:

    Originally posted by liveinabin:

    A question, I don't think it says in the rules. Do you want 'Special Edition' on the label or are we just sticking with Qb.

    What's yer preference?


    I have no preference. Whatever looks good to you is the best way to do it. Entries so far are so amazing, I'd like to include every one of them in the special edition documentation. If you do NOT wish your entry included please drop me a note.




  12. Well, I'm quite thrilled with the quality and variety of the entries so far. Well done, everyone! I'm so pleased, in fact, that I've decided to extend the prizes, and will be giving a regular Qb cartridge (signed if you wish) to 2nd and 3rd place entries.




  13. quote:

    Originally posted by Thomas Jentzsch:

    Originally posted by Rhindle The Red:

    [qb]It could be "KZIPE"



    For what it's worth, I agree with this pronunciation, though I do like the "hype" one, too.




  14. quote:

    Originally posted by Mindfield:

    I have one question.


    Is Qb an egg?


    I have no definite idea of what the guy is. He's a good example of programmer-art, squashed into 8 pixel width. In answer to an earlier question, it's a smile, not an arm or a shadow.


    Basically you don't need to follow the visuals of the screen too closely - if you want to make it an egg, fine. If that works for your art. If you want to make it Darth Vader without the helmet, fine too. I'm trying to keep the design as completely unencumbered with my preconceptions as possible


    In answer to the note/question about later additions of text, etc., and allowing the original artist to do this - I don't forsee a lot of changes. It's quite probable that the winner's artwork will be used as-is, without changes.


    Can't wait to see some designs




  15. quote:

    Originally posted by liveinabin:

    As far as I know, I don't think the Xype 'range' is gonna have a definite design style. [snip/snip]... but i think the only constant here is gonna be Xypes logo


    I'm just looking for great design in the label. Feel free to 'bend the rules' a bit if you think you need to do so. The final design may have slight wording/position/art changes from what the winner submits - so the actual logo you use isn't that important.


    What is important to me is the look/feel of your design, not the actual font or pixel position of elements. Of course those who go to greater efforts to get it all 'right' will have a greater chance of winning.


    Above all else, have fun

  16. A demo version of my GBA Atari 2600 emulator is downloadable from www.2headed.com/2600.bin - this contains many ROMs (explaining the size), only two of which are enabled (Qb and Pitfall). Speed is quite dismal - about 4fps, but I am midway through an upgrade and will announce further speedups as they occur.


    This emulator runs on actual Gameboy Advance hardware, and some emulators. It's just super-cool to play (even slowly) '2600 games on your GBA!


    Anyway, thought some would like to see stuff running. If you have a specific game request, I'll do a version if it gets more than 10 votes from others.

  17. quote:

    Originally posted by Albert:

    Wow, those boxes are going to be pretty cool once you get them painted! I'm looking forward to seeing pictures of the finished boxes! How much time do you think you'll end up spending on each individual box?


    Thanks for sharing!




    Not a lot. An hour or so. I'm very pleased with the results, by the way - I had them specially commissioned from a disabled workshop. They cost me a fortune, but I guess it makes them special, after all.




  18. I've just received the boxes for the Qb special edition, and have some pictures to show...











    These show the unpainted box (it will be painted either green, yellow or red, reflecting the background colours used in the game for next level, loss of life, end of game). On top of the box are rare-wood squares, which will be varnished and in random pattern. These represent the game itself. There will also be a gold/brass serial number on the box lid, looking like a score.


    Inside the box you see a CD in case, '2600 cartridge, and under those is a manual. This is a final-stage mockup, in that I'm awaiting the cartridges from Hozer, and final printing of manual, etc. But in essence, all ready to go.


    Those who have preordered should contact me about arranging payment now. [email protected].

  19. quote:

    Originally posted by C. Schell:

    Keep in mind that 100 copies of Qb were sold at PhillyClassic, and that there are I think 100 people on the list of the super deluxe (Ok, I can't recall the name) version as well. This might explain why Hoser has moved so few copies.




    Only 50 copies were sold at PhillyClassic. Yes, there are 100 preorders for the special edition, but it is by no means certain that I will produce 100 copies. Hopefully. The special edition is a rewrite, by the way, so the game looks visually much prettier.


    Finally, Hozer has sold so few because I had asked Randy not to sell Qb until I gave the OK. I did that only a month or two back.


    As for people not buying copies, I have always encouraged people to download and play on emulator, or burn their own ROMs. But if you want the real thing, then the purchase of a cartridge from Hozer does assist me greatly.




  20. You can see some screenshots of the emulator in action at www.2headed.com/2600.html, and download

    a very early alpha binary of Qb too. The binary is my '2600 game Qb running on the '2600 emulator running on a Gameboy Advance. This will run on hardware, or emulators (tested on Mappy, and VisualBoy Advance). Frame rate is about 4fps on hardware - which, I know, is dog-slow. But on the other hand it's all C++ at the moment, and I'm mid-stream in my quest to convert it to fast assembler. I'm very pleased with the progress so far, and have had the emulator running about 20 different games with no problems at all!




  21. quote:

    Originally posted by atari70s:

    they talk about LDY as "in a way one may say thats how the screen is drawn" in testing the lower number less text is shown and closer to 255 i go the amount of room one can fit ona screen seems to fill up. now looking at HELLO that prints on screen.i see some things like color you work off the digits on the bytes. now i get teh feeling that HELLO is being used by the program with careful byte counting is that the PF0 that i was refering to earlier. i see it on top of my page here.yet


    PF0 is 4 5 6 7 now looking at the code since the notes are 0+3 = 3 would that be why PF0 starts at 4 and since the AND # 7 is that why it stops at 7?



    I put it as politely as I could in my earlier message. This time, not so politely... your questions are showing your complete lack of understanding of the fundamentals. You obviously have absolutely NO idea what is happening in that code, and are trying to guess your way around it. It's not black-magic. You need to develop an understanding of assembler, and the machine. And to do that, you need to start at square 1. There's no easy quick-start - you actually have to put in some effort.


    As others have suggested, find a decent book on starting assembly code, and go from there. Your questions are so fundamentally clueless that they are impossible to answer - your underlying assumptions about how the whole thing works are just terribly wrong.


    Great entertainment, though.




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