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  1. Updated "Encore" Hacks These are updates of my previous hacks. I did this for a variety of reasons. I included some of my "Personal" hacks. They are hacks of Pac-Man games. I use these on my personal systems. I decided to polish them a little and share them with the community. These are located at the end. Popeye When Playsoft & I originally hacked Popeye (2015), we had a version with a "mono" punch. I have since regretted not releasing it. It was NOT popular in the forum, but I always felt it might have caught on if we'd finished it. Development shifted to the popular forum choice. Years later, @TIX asked me if I still had it. I looked; I could find the final A8 version, but I couldn't find the source. People seemed to like the mono punch in Tix's hack (Popeye sacrifices color for a higher resolution punch), so it inspired me to finish mine. I started by porting the rest of my final graphics to the "mono" version. While I was porting the graphics, I noticed little areas I wanted to tweak. I had always disliked my climbing and death frames. I also felt that Olive didn't translate well from emulation to CRT. Since I tweaked some of the graphics, I also updated the original punch version too, for those who still prefer the double-resolution/multi-color punch. I really like Tix's version. His was based off of the NES port, while I grew up with the arcade version; so each offer a unique graphic experience. I thank him for the inspiration to unearth the mono punch and for the angled bottles. Thanks to Playsoft for finding the original source AND adding the animated bottles! -- When I first saw Popeye in the arcades, I was amazed. I never thought games could look this "real". The Atari resolution is lower, the players are limited to 8, fat dots wide, and they're not very tall. The characters are also limited to 3 colors each. Colors are limited to what two colors will overlap to simulate a flesh tone. However, I do not see any competitor, of the time, coming this close. While I love the NES version, it could have been much closer to the arcade original. I would love to see this on the 7800, using 320 mode. (The arcade version actually boxes out when sprites overlap!) I think the C-64 could have had a much better port, but the release was an early titele Atari 8-Bit Computers PopeyeA8_EncoreM.xex (Mono Punch) * (Intro of the MonoPunch - Click Here) PopeyeA8_Encore.xex (Original Punch) Atari 5200 SuperSystem PopeyeEncoreM_5200.bin (Mono Punch) * PopeyeEncore_5200.bin * The original punch uses two overlapping players, since that is the only way to get multi-colored "sprites". One is blue, and the other is flesh colored. When the blue and flesh color overlap, it creates white. The programmer was pretty ingenious in making the flesh color double-width, so the arm could stretch out. He left the blue as low resolution. It allows more detail than if the two were both expanded. However, it sacrifices detail for color. In the "mono" punch, both players are made white, and they are placed side-by-side, allowing for a wider version of Popeye, in greater detail. This thread goes into more detail! Click here! ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Donkey Kong (Encore) / Encore RMT (8-bit only) I was pretty happy with the Donkey Kong port. In some of the YouTube comments, I read that some were not happy with the colors I chose. This is a delicate situation, as many do not realize how limited the colors are. Mario's flesh is made up of two overlapping players. Tweaking the colors makes one character look better, and the others look worse. I played around with the colors, and I think I like this better. (Mario's flesh color is a result of red and blue overlapping, so this is truly the best compromise.) I focused on tweaking the contrast. I think this makes the game "pop" a little more. Colors have been slightly adjusted in doing so. I've tested it on real NTSC hardware (5200/800XL), and I am happy. Now there are two color sets to choose from. There was something still not right with Mario's steps and jump. Mario's jump is limited, because Mario is only 8-pixels wide. I think I improved it over the previous. I also improved his walking. Other insignificant changes were made. I hope you enjoy this. Thanks again to @playsoft for making this possible. I believe @Kjmann made the original RMT sound hack, with help from @tep392. Atari 8-bit Computers DKA8_Encore.xex DKA8_RMT_Encore.xex Atari 5200 SuperSystem DKEncore5200.bin ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Donkey Kong Jr. Encore(Arcade) / Donkey Kong Jr. Encore (Enhanced) This is one I was never really happy with. I got tired of "playing" with this back in the day. I tried to add all of Jr.'s arcade detail, but it ended up making his head too big. This update was focused on trimming the "fat" off of the sprites. Due to the lower resolution, I needed to sacrifice detail for proportion. I made a few color tweaks. This game has the most graphic updates of the "Encore" tweaks. Notice Donkey Kong's hands in the cage. I had some downtime, so I was able to focus on detail that I couldn't before. Thanks to @playsoft, for all the help. @tep392 helped tweak the floor and vine boundaries, back when we first hacked this. It's not as easy to slip off of the floors, and the red snapjaws can't get Junior at the bottom of a vine. The game still takes some adjustment, but it's a lot more forgiving. The Atari 8-Bit version was always a little touchy, due to the graphics mode used, but it captures a few of details that other versions are missing. Atari 8-bit Computers DkJr_Arcade_Encore.xex DKJr_Enhanced_Encore.xex Atari 5200 SuperSystem DKJr_5200_Arcade_Encore.bin DKJr_5200_Enhanced_Encore.bin ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mario Bros 5200 Encore / Encore-Improved I was pretty happy with the Mario Bros hacks. I did tweak some of the colors, especially in the ice ages. The regular "Encore" version includes graphic and color tweaks. The fighter flies are redrawn. The Encore-Improved version includes tweaks by @playsoft, that reduce slowdown in areas. The 5200 version included more arcade details than the NES version, which is what the poor 7800 version was based off of. It just needed a graphics overhaul to realize its full potential. Mario Bros52 Encore MarioBros52_Encore.bin MarioBros52_Encore.car Mario Bros52 Encore Improved (Less slowdown) MarioBros52_Encore_improved.bin MarioBros52_Encore_improved.car ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mario Bros XE Encore Mario Bros XE is, in my opinion, the most accurate home port of the Mario Bros. I recall that there is only one other home port of Mario Bros that includes the icicles (No, I am not talking about the Slipice. Even the 2600 has Slipice!) I think that version might be the Apple II, and it isn't even close to this standard. I made some tweaks to Mario. I think it makes his running a little more fluent. I added the pupil up to his jump. I carried the improved fighter flies over from the 5200 version. That can't always be done, because the software sprites are configured differently on each version. I was able to do so. They look better in this version, however, due to more animation frames. I adjusted the contrast and colors a little, to make things POP. I REALLY wanted to make the Shellcreepers jump OUT of their shells. There just wasn't enough room. Atari 8-Bit Computers (need 128K or 128K Cartridge) MarioBrosXE_Encore.car MarioBrosXE_Encore.bin MarioBrosXE_Encore.xex --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- These are the Ms Pac-Man versions I use on my Atari 800XL & 5200. Atari Computer Ms Pac-Man Encore I always wondered why GCC didn't try to add red "lips" to Ms Pac-Man, especially in the 7800 version. I figured A8/5200 suspected it was a hardware limitation for this machine. When I realized that the A8/5200 versions had full player width available for the bow and lips, I made it happen. On a CRT, the lips can be hard to notice, especially if the signal isn't great. I suspect that might be the reason. Plus the red and black (eye next to red lips) tend to look like holes. I doubled the lips a little from the arcade for emphasis. I think they add and anti-aliasing effect, which "fakes" a higher resolution. I had to move her dimple down, because it interfered with the wide open mouth, due to the lower resolution and size. The monsters must remain 8-pixels wide, to hide the quad-width missile. It is behind their eyes, to make their eyes white. Thinner eyes are either off center or too far apart, due to the odd-numbered full-width players. I used a full "v" shape for years. I recently removed the inside pixel, to give them an angle, and I think it makes a subtle improvement. I wasn't going to post these, since there have been so many Ms Pac-Man hacks; plus I am not SURE who all have contributed to the various hacks that this is based off of. While I was cleaning up my other hacks, I decided to finally tackle all of the fruit prizes. I figure I will include these, since I didn't before. I will do my best to give credit where due. This A8 game already had the dot slowdown adjusted, Pokey sound was tweaked, and there are noticeable improvements in the monster logic. It plays more like the 7800 counterpart. Somewhere along the lines, I saw credits by @MrFish and @tep392. These are just my graphic edits. If anybody else needs credit, please let me know. Of all the monster eye hacks I've tried, below is my favorite for the A8/5200 tweak. I would like to round the monsters' "head", but that would reveal the white missiles behind the monsters. I am not sure who made the splash screen. It's pretty cool! Note: The 5200 version is slightly different. It only contained updated sound effects, which are slightly different than the A8 version's sound. @playsoft helped merge the dot slowdown fix, from the A8 to the 5200 version. Somebody had added a Ms Pac-Man splash screen to the 5200 ROM, but the game would freeze when I'd press Pause on real hardware. @playsoft stripped that off, and all works fine. It's a shame, because it was cool. I'd rather be able to use my pause button. Atari Computer Ms Pac-Man Encore Ms. Pac-Man_Encore.xex 5200 SuperSytem Ms Pac-Man Encore Ms Pac-Man Encore 5200.BIN --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Pac-Man Collection 7800 Hack I bought Pac-Man Collection at the Cleveland Classic Gaming Show (CCAG). It was the first and last time AtariAge had a booth there, so it was a long time ago. I loved @PacManPlus's creation. It was exciting to have Pac-Man on the 7800, but Hangly-Man is one of my childhood favorites! The lack of Pokey sound kept me from playing it as much as I would have. When I found the Pokey enhanced version, I was pumped. The graphics had also been updated, but there were some things I preferred from my old A8 hacks. I used "Pac-Man Construction Set" to hack this. I found I was able to fine tune the monsters even more than the A8/5200, since I didn't have to worry about exposing the big white rectangle behind the monsters. I was able to thin them a little. I tried to make Ms Pac-Man as close to the arcade as possible. It looked great in emulation, but it was blurry and awkward on my actual system and Sony CRT. I tweaked it a little. I felt the result played to the strengths of the RF output on my 7800, and this is the version I have been using for years. As I was cleaning up old hacks, I decided to update the fruit prizes, as I had not done that in the hack I was using. I decided include this with my full-blow hack collaborations, because I enjoy it. I appreciate Pac-Man Plus's blessing to share this. I would ultimately like to update Ms Pac-Man to resemble my A8/5200 main characters, as they seem to be a better average for CRT and emulation. I was tired after hitting the fruits for all the different versions. If I update the main characters, I will add them here. I don't know when I'll have the time again, and I don't know if my A8/5200 main character will look the same on the 7800. 7800 Pac-Man Collection Pokey, with my graphic hacks. Pac-Man Collection Encore.a78 Pac-Man Collection Encore.bin 7800 Pac-Man Collection Pokey, with updates from the A8/5200 version. Not sure how they will look on a regular CRT. Not yet tested on actual 7800 hardware. Pac-Man Collection Encore(Alt).a78 Pac-Man Collection Encore(Alt).bin PacManPlus, @tep392, and @Defender_2600 have created a NEW 7800XM Pac-Man Collection, Pac-Man Collection XM. It has taken everything up a notch. It uses 320 mode, so there's very little need to approximate the graphics. Click the link to check it out. The TIA sound is mind-blowing, but Perry also added Yamaha sound for the XM Expansion. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Atari Computer / 5200 * Unplayable * Baby Pac-Man maze concept When @PacManPlus was working on Baby Pac-Man, I couldn't help but think that the A8 would be a perfect candidate for the game. Since the arcade monsters do no have whites in their eyes, it would be much like the original A8/5200 Pac-Man. Four Players could make up the monsters, and the "5th" Player could make up Pac-Man, or Pac-Man could be a software sprite. I shared a few Baby Pac-Man sprites with @playsoft, and he sent back a maze with wandering monsters. I proceeded to fine-tune some of the playfield elements. The monsters move randomly. They are lacking any personality. This was just a quick demo for fun. There is no plan to work on this, but maybe it will inspire somebody to bring Baby Pac-Man to the A8/5200?? I personally got a kick out of running this on my A8 and 5200 hardware. There is a regular version and enhanced. The enhanced version uses software sprites to create the monster's eyes. That was @playsoft's idea. I have a thing for arcade purity, and he wanted to see real eyes. It would be cool to have a toggle option for "Arcade" or "Enhanced" mode. Atari Home Computers BabyPac-Man_A8.xex BabyPac-Man_A8(Enhanced).xex Atari 5200 SuperSystem BabyPac-Man_5200.bin BabyPac-Man_5200(Enhanced).bin
  2. I have read comments, here and on YouTube, over the past 3 years. I have made some updates to all of these games here! A quick note about the hacks: I have decided to place all of my hacks in one, convenient thread. As I grew up with my Atari 5200 and Atari 800XL, there were certain games that I thought had a little more potential. I had created basic hacks for a few of these games. I always thought that my 5200 Popeye could look better. Brutus didn't have a number "5" for a head in the arcade version. I knew I had drawn more accurate Mario characters on my 800XL. If only I could plug them into the games. I teamed up with Playsoft, who provided the tools and wisdom to make these games possible. Some of these games have other contributors. Tep392 helped us tweak the collision and touchy controls in DK Jr. I believe that Tep392 and Kjmann worked on the original Donkey Kong RMT sound version. I believe there is another member who helped Playsoft in some of the A8 to 5200 conversions. I am not sure who drew the giant Popeye head. If anybody has clarity on this, let me know, so credit can go where it is due. These are truly community projects, and I had a great time watching them transform. Playsoft did an amazing job of hacking display list interrupts, giving me a little more height area (eg. thicker 5200 Mario Bros floors, as well as multiple floor types). I have been holding off on releasing the latest Mario Bros hacks, because I didn't want to release as many revisions. I was also hoping for some upgraded sound effects for Mario, but there's not always enough time in the day. There's a bonus hack for the 7800 Mario Bros. I found the 7800 graphics tedious to hack. The characters were drawn too small and flat, and the game itself plays horribly. That version has the least number of animation frames, so the animation is poor regardless. It is my "Lipstick on a Pig" release. Donkey Kong: Atari 8-bit Computer Arcade version -- DK_A8_Arcade.xex Atari 8-bit Computer RMT version (Updated sound) -- DK_A8_RMT.xex Atari 5200 Supersystem version -- DK5200_Arcade.bin Donkey Kong Jr: (Arcade & Enhanced versions) Atari 8-bit Computer Arcade version -- DKJr_A8_Arcade.xex Atari 8-bit Computer Enhanced version -- DKJr_A8_Enhanced.xex Atari 5200 Supersystem Arcade version -- DKJr_5200_Arcade.bin Atari 5200 Supersystem Enhanced version -- DKJr_5200_Enhanced.bin Popeye Arcade: Atari 8-bit Computer version --PopeyeArcade_A8_Final.xex Atari 5200 Supersystem version -- Popeye5200_ArcadeFinal.bin Mario Bros (1983, 5200 version): Atari 5200 Supersystem bin version -- MarioBros_Arcade_52.bin Atari 5200 Supersystem car format -- MarioBros_Arcade_52.zip Mario Bros XE: Atari XL/XE version - MarioBrosArcade_XE.zip Mario Bros 7800: Atari 7800 version - Mariobros_7800_Arcade.a78
  3. I talk about Mental Health Awareness Month for 2 minutes before playing Donkey Kong Jr. on my Retron 77.
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