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About quohog

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    Star Raider
  • Birthday 07/26/1967

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    Atari 2600, 8 bit, & Lynx. And Vectrex, if I can get that thing working!

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  1. quohog

    Vectrex SD Cart?

    IMG_2019.MOV Hi! Anyone else getting garbled menus with their vecmulti? (See above video). If I hit reset repeatedly, every once in a while I’ll get working menus, but I’m just as likely to get a “no cart inserted/dev mode activated” screen. I’ve taken the cart out, microSD card out, reinserted, power cycled, etc. all the usual things to try and fix it. Like I said, it works every once in a while. Just curious if I’m the only one seeing the garbage text menus. thanks!
  2. Exciting! tl;dr: How can I learn to make games like Champ Games? Have you ever done a designer diary, given a postmortem presentation, posted source code or anything I can consume that would help me learn how Champ Games makes these amazing games? There is a good selection of "noob" tutorials now for 2600 homebrew, but if the next, more advanced step got some great educational material, it would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
  3. No, it's a sword with a giant, pointy tip, because if you hold it the other way your collision box is smaller. You want the big arrow out front to catch the most dragons. Sorry, that's just Sword Math™.
  4. @Andrew Davie I'm having a little trouble finding the python program in the download. Here's what I got. Did I download the wrong zip?
  5. Thanks for the ideas! I think I'll try out the BYO Greeting Cart first! But the idea of using excel is pretty clever!
  6. I've been using playerpal to make my sprites and it's been awesome for regular characters and animation. But say I wanted to make one of those big sprites like our friend E.T. here. I have the code samples so the kernal's not the problem I'm just wondering if there is an editor out there like PlayerPal that's built for wide loads like this one. Especially one that will take a bitmap as input. Say I had a bitmap I made in photoshop, already reduced down to 48 pixels wide. Is there a sprite editor out there that will take in that bitmap and crank out data that's ready for a one of the 48 pixel kernals that are commonly used? Any info is appreciated! Thank you!
  7. Thanks, @Omegamatrix! I think my example was misleading. I'm using the pointers because notes_0 might be pointing to one of my sounds in ROM (Eg: SOUND_BELL) and note_1 could be pointing to another (Eg: SOUND_WHACK). So totally arbitrary ROM addresses. Not an orderly list of notes. If that's any clearer.
  8. Hi! I'm curious how some of you would treat indirect addressing in a loop like I'm about to describe. Every solution I can think of just feels clunky and I have a feeling there's an elegant way to do it just out of reach of my brain. So. I originally wrote my sound manager unlooped, duplicating all code for voice 0 and voice 1, just to get it up and running quick. Now it's bigger and I want to save ROM by putting it into a loop that you run through twice with x = 0 and then 1. Simple, right? For readability sake, lets use a simple pretend version of it below. Say it the original code looked like this: SoundManager subroutine VOICE0: ldy note_index_0 lda (notes_0),y sta AUDF0 VOICE1: ldy note_index_1 lda (notes_1),y sta AUDF1 rts So then the LOOPED version would look like: SoundManagerLooped subroutine ldx #1 VOICE_LOOP: lda note_index_0,x lda ????????????,y sta AUDF0,x dex bpl VOICE_LOOP rts (My real sound manager is way more complicated so the looping saves more space than this, I swear. :D) So can you see the part that's stumping me? The part with all the ???????? If note_index_0 and note_index_1 are both two-byte pointers into ROM, then I can't index note_index_0 with x to get the result. That will just point to the MSB of the same pointer. So I kind of want to multiply x by 2, but that doesn't seem worth the cycles. So right now I'm using a branch: cpx #0 bne do_voice_1 lda (notes_0),y jmp SET_NOTE do_voice_1: lda (notes_1),y SET_NOTE: sta AUDF0,x But that makes me feel dirty and wasteful. And when I did it that way, I only shrunk my routine by 30%, when I was hoping to cut it in half. So is there just some simple answer using clever addressing modes? Or some change I can make to my layout of pointers? I'm afraid the answer is going to be like when you go to the doctor and say, "Doc, my finger hurts when I bend it like this," and the doctor says, "Okay, so don't bend it like that." 😕 Anyway, thanks for reading. Any suggestions are appreciated.
  9. Oh man, I knew something terrible was going to happen but I jumped out of my seat anyway. My fault for using headphones. :') Anyway, thanks for all the responses. I got some fairly cheap, rubber lineman's gloves just for fun, and I'm going in.
  10. Hi there! I have a Vectrex I bought from ebay around '98 that used to work, but when I checked it 10 years ago it wouldn't power up. I have done some soldering in the past--nothing advanced, but I've swapped out capacitors without killing myself. So I was thinking maybe I'll just get a cap kit for this thing and everything will magically work again. But then I watched a few videos about it and all the warnings about getting killed by the crt discharge have me a little freaked out. I'm watching people shove screwdrivers under that cap and thinking, hmmmm. I don't really want to do that. How can I be sure I discharged the thing? It's been off for at least 10 years so I feel pretty safe there, but if I needed to turn it on to test it and then still had to work on it, I'd need to discharge it, right? So what's your opinion? Is the danger overstated and I should just take precautions and give it a shot? Or send it to someone else to fix it for me? And if it's the later, does anyone have any recommendations for a good person for vectrex repairs? I'm in the SF bay area. Thanks for any advice, recommendations, horror stories, or opinions!
  11. Wow, thanks for digging out the optimal mole whacking hardware, @Omegamatrix! I appreciate the effort. Did you apply the special mole-grabber tape to the back so they don't slip? 1) Yes! I have been appreciating the pause feature a lot lately when playing Ladybug and Klax. But I think it might not be necessary now because I've added a starting bell. Continuing my pattern of stealing from Kaboom, now you press the lower, right button to start a game, and to start each round. So, if you're like me and your head gets itchy when under pressure, you can pause between every round and take care of your nervous scratches. 2) Start bell to the rescue! 3) Yeah, I've been messing with flashing colors and nothing really grabs me. But actually as I'm typing this I just got a great idea, so thanks I owe it all to you! Ha ha ha! 4) That's a great idea. I wonder if I could or should combine that with another idea I had of twin moles--moles that pop up and match and you have to press two buttons at once to whack them. But maybe these are two separate ideas. hm... hmmm.....🤔 I'll put these on the task list along with the "do not whack" mole/bomb. I'll attach a screenshot of the current game. I'll put up a new rom after I fix some nasty bugs. You can see the starting bell in the lower right corner. You hit it with the hammer to start the game and each round. I like it, but I'm not happy with my "ding" sound. Anyone have any idea how to make a good "ding" sound? I've tried using tones 4 and 12 and wiggling the volume up and down and it sounds okay as far as the ringing goes... but it doesn't have that really sharp attack like a hammer hitting a bell. The D in "ding" is missing. Also, I'm still on the fence (literally) about some of the visual touches I've added. The game had a really simple graphical look before. But I felt like breaking up the horizon with some grass. And the flowers just kind of happened. And it seemed rude to make a game with so many homages to Activision and not add a sunrise. But now is it too much? Need to sit with it for a while. Anyway, I'll fix some bugs and put it up, then I want to do a big refactor to crunch down its rom footprint so I can try to add two-player competitive version. I also got a save key slot from Albert. Lots to do! Thanks again for playing!
  12. Fix confirmed! Mole fatalities minimal!
  13. That's an awesome score! And I'm super happy you got the real hardware. I really like how these controllers feel in your hand and I want to make more games for them. I just hope people can play them. PS I also tape the back.
  14. Exciting! Well after those games, I have tiny bug report for you: I love the beautiful Hangman menu, but the game crashes for me after I enter an incorrect letter on levels 9 or 12. Wait, just tried it again and sometimes it crashes (freezes) after missing a letter on lower levels too, but less often. And I can get it to go back to the lovely menu with the select button but when I start another game it's frozen again. Or, that is, I have no player control.
  15. Looking at this example makes me wonder, have you ever found extra variants not found in the commercial release of the game? Like here, they lump game 7, visibility 1 with the 5 ROBBERS and TERROR variants. I wonder if they did that for design reasons, or if they grouped variations together sometimes just to reduce the number of game variants? Otherwise you might have to hit the sect switch 255 times to get to your game. So if you exposed the raw byte where they're storing all these flags, have you ever enabled undocumented combos?
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