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pwalters

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pwalters last won the day on September 8 2015

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About pwalters

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  1. This is very nice, Swami! I like where you are going with this. The picture is representative of the layout of the game, so it works well. On the animal names, I like all three of your suggestions -- it is (or was supposed to be) an alligator. I had lunch with David Crane at a CES show in '92, I was doing some work for Absolute Entertainment for a GameBoy cart. David was really down to earth and easy to talk to so I like calling the bird a 'Crane'. How do the patches work? Is it something printed in the manual or is it an actual patch of some type?
  2. I've been conversing with Albert this morning and we would like to get this cartridge out early in 2020. Things are a little bit to hectic right at the moment with the Portland show coming up, and the holiday season. To that end, Albert tells me the first thing we need is the verbiage for the manual on how to use and play the game. With the high level of creativity and enthusiasm in this forum. I would like to try a little 'Crowd Sourcing' to get the manual text done. I know many of you have seen/read prototypical game manuals a lot more recently and often than I have... I've read through some and here are the basic sections that I've seen: 1. GAME NAME 2. Description teaser for what the game. --- Example: Guide Noah through the Ark helping him feed and take care of the animals during the flood. Noah must navigate through 3 levels, avoiding obstacles such as birds, turtles, and alligators .. ( more descriptive text) 3. Game Play : Description of how the game is played, what the buttons do and why.. 4. Controls <perhaps redundant as number 3 above kind of covers this? 5. Final advice and/or challenge : Example: 'Can you guide Noah through 40 days and nights?' I'm positive this group can put collaboriatively put together a great manual! Anyone care to start? PS: Just a note that my lawyers had to pound into my thick skull years ago: The verbiage will be public domain. No royalties will be paid, and no copyrights will be inferred.
  3. Yes, I visit the forum every now and then. I've spent the past year working most waking hours developing a new company and its products, so haven't had time to do much else. I very much want this to be released as a cartridge. It would be nice to see the final chapter of this game that was developed 36 years ago. My attempts to make that happen with others have failed - which is why I released the ROM a year ago. I've contacted Albert again to see if he is willing to move forward. If not, in a few months I might have the time to put into it. I'll try to post more frequent updates. Thanks for your enthusiasm! One of the things I liked about developing games was the thrill I got when I'd see the game being played and enjoyed by others.
  4. Watch the bird's animation closely.... As the bird flies along there are at least 4 spots where Noah is safe standing up and with a little practice you can can even run right under the bird without slowing down.
  5. I'm just curious if those who have played this game much have figured out the trick to avoid the flying birds without ducking?
  6. In the ROM that I released, there is no serial number. In the upcoming AtariAge cartridge release, they will be serialized. There will also be 2 versions of the game on the released cartridge. The original 1983 version, and a new updated version that will have a number of extended features -- power-ups, speed boost, etc.
  7. Well I had seen the 'SuperCharger' but it was seeing and playing with the Frob that got me going on it. I had bigger plans, but with the Atari crash, and with young children to feed I had to do other things. Worked at HoneyWell's large scale mainframe division for a few years.. I still laugh when I see Intel based PC's or Apple come up with a 'brand new way' to do things, when we were doing that and more in the '80s -- but that's another story. In the late 80's I got back into game making. I had a large 65c816 project and wrote a C compiler just so the project would be easier to manage. I also built a full dev system for the 65c816 processor that was later used on Nintendo's SNES and sold it to developers. I based it on the 'Grammar Engine' ROM emulator, because they had built in a communications channel that allowed the development PC to communicate through a 'virtual' serial port in the ROM emulator to the cpu. The emulator also let the PC control reset, trigger IRQ and write data anywhere into the ROM emulators space. With the small monitor in the game code, you would get full breakpoints, dump all register values, single step through source code, snapshots, and real time modifications of data values. Sold it to a number of SNES game developers and development companies. The SNES used the 65c816 CPU. That CPU was designed by the Western Design Center and licensed to companies that wanted to use it such as Nintendo. WDC was founded by Bill Mensch and they were located about 2 miles from my house. I considered Bill Mensch a friend and I had worked with him off and on various projects since my early days at Enter-Tech. It was nice be able to drive over to WDC's offices and talk with the chip designers on its ins and outs. Perhaps a little bit off topic as the tools were late 80's into the early 90's.
  8. When I first started at Tuni / Enter-Tech, my first project was the El Grande 5 card draw arcade machine. The tools they had available for development was a single EPROM programmer. El Grande was simply a mod off of a platform they licensed from a San Diego company. But to make changes I had to build by hand and then manually enter the binary code into the Data I/O EPROM programmer. Fortunately it wasn't too long until they bought the first Genrad/Futuredata. Yes, it supported macros. Also it built object files, and had a linker -- not all would do that back then. I also did 2600 projects at home using a board I made that operated as a RAM cartridge. I'd build the code on my Atari 800 and load it into the RAM cartridge by pushing it out the 800's joystick ports It took 3 ports to have enough signals to manipulate the RAM cartridge. I had also built an EPROM programmer that was controlled through the 800's joystick ports, but the RAM cart was, of course, faster and easier. The Genrad/FutureData system was really expensive -- $25k in 1982. That would be over $65k in today's dollars.
  9. pwalters

    Arkyology

    Preview of the 1983 game Arkyology
  10. With Stella's video settings on 'default' the right half of the top line are showing as gray. During movement it fluctuates as well... http://www.atariage.com/forums/gallery_ips/gallery/album_1483/gallery_43582_1483_1700.png
  11. Arky-Mod(fix_v3).bin seems to introduce an odd artifact at the top of the Ark when played in Stella. I see a gray line top of the Ark starting at about midway through the scan. It flickers a bit seemling based on movement?
  12. ... I see this is quite an old thread, but I thought I would chip in here with what I used to develop 2600 games in the early '80s. At work ( Enter-Tech LTD), we had two GenRad/FutureData dev systems. These were full ICE (In-circuit-simulator) devices. Here's a link to some info on these: https://pcmuseum.ca/details.asp?id=574 We took the 2600, cut it open, removed the CPU and placed a socket that converted the 28pin package to a standard 6502 40 pin header. The GenRad's ICE prob then was plugged directly into the 40 pin 6502 socket. For it's time it was a very advanced tool. Having an ICE that supported multiple hardware breakpoints, hardware timers so we could time how long it took to run blocks of code, and rapid build/test cycles was very useful. The units had 2 8" floppy drives, and internally it had a RAM file system. In the morning we would load up the RFS with the code, compiler, editor etc. Then we could get very fast (for the time) compilation cycles. We used these dev systems for all of our 6502 work on the Atari, the Moppet video arcade games, and the gambling Card game products.
  13. I believe you now hold the all-time world record on Arkyology! Congratulations!
  14. I designed the movement on and off the ladders. Getting on is easy, if Noah is standing within a few pixels of the ladder he will 'jump' onto the ladder by moving the joystick up or down. Getting off the ladder is easy to do so on an original joystick or even with keyboard using stella if you move in the stick in diagonal directions. If so then he stops moving when he reaches the next platform (either upper or lower) he stops moving exactly at the jump off point whereupon you simply move the joystick in the direction of travel you want to go. We didn't do the jump off the ladder while midway up/down it because Noah's head would disappear in the area of the animals and tubes. Just an observation on the suggestion to mod it to be easier -- IMHO - If you play a mod to make a game easier then you aren't really playing the game.
  15. Haha, well my memory could very well be deteriorating with advancing age... We wanted the alligator to be impossible to jump. I remember the first time I saw him get jumped, George was playing the game in one of our high-score competitions, and on one of the higher really difficult levels he jumped the alligator. Up until then we thought it was impossible. After that we all started trying it and eventually got to where we could do it in about 1 in 20 tries. I haven't dissected the pixel-by-pixel movements of the player vs alligator, but I do remember it being just barely possible. On the rating, wow! thanks! To be even mentioned in the same review with those titles is quite a compliment. There were a number of things you mentioned we had planned, and some that we had implemented. Unfortunately we were stuck with 8k ROM and just couldn't fit it all in, so we had to cut. On the higher scoring, do you remember that quite a few games back then started simply adding an extra zero, or 2 (or just x100) at the end of the score so it looked higher? We didn't want to do that and thought it would be a better feeling if the player earned the higher score. Perhaps we were purists, but that's why the score isn't overly gratuitous. It's just a preference, but I do understand looking at a score of 100000 feels better than looking at 1000.
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