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Found 13 results

  1. Hi all! To start the new year, and to provide a better Basic for all the new ten-liners, I'm releasing version 4.0 of FastBasic. The major changes in this version are under the hood: The interpreter has been changed from a stack-base virtual machine to a register plus stack, this makes the interpreter from 10% to 20% faster depending in the program. In the SIEVE.BAS benchmark, the Atari version is 13% faster and in the cross-compiler is 19% faster, but programs depending on fast PEEK and POKE should be much faster. There is now a full test-suite to automatically catch regressions in the parser and interpreter, ensuring that bugs don't re-appear. Also, there are some user visible changes: There is now a command-line compiler "FBC.COM", this allows compiling large programs that don't fit in the full editor. Currently, "FBC" accepts the full floating-point syntax. Added minimal support for Player/Missile graphics: PMGRAPHICS (abbreviated PM.) statements setups P/M, PMHMOVE (abbreviated PMH.) horizontal moving a a player/missile, PMADR() returns the address of the given player/missile data. Many small bugs fixed. In this version the integer IDE is 8188 bytes in size (we still have 4 bytes less than 8K), and the floating-point IDE is 9405 bytes. As always, full sources and binaries for Atari, Linux, Windows and MacOS are available over Github: https://github.com/dmsc/fastbasic/releases
  2. Can someone recommend a relatively simple, easy to learn & use, yet powerful enough to do what I want, imperative programming language like BASIC or Visual Basic, for making Atari VCS and 8-bit type games for the Windows desktop (or maybe Linux but prefer Windows)? I would mainly be making 2-D games - stuff like Pong or Combat up to 8-bit Atari or Commodore era games, but probably nothing more complex. Maybe remake Pinball Construction Set or classic Ultima. Some features that would help relatively self contained (not 1,000,000 libraries you have to go through) free or not too expensive (this would be just for fun) easy to find lots of sample code for how to do things, and strong active community to ask questions built in IDE (preferably a visual IDE) and most importantly: currently supported and should continue to keep working for some time developed with a backwards-compatible philosophy so your programs will still work after a couple years! I have dabbled in various languages / systems over the years and made some games or partial games: Commodore 64 / BASIC - easy but games ran too slow, compiler helped speed games up, used some simple assembly for speeding up little routines (hard!) Commodore 64 / Gamemaker - easy but too limited (plus I missed being able to type code) Mac Classic / Pascal - limited to black & white graphics, couldn't find any info on making sounds (pre-Web so it was very hard to find docs or examples) Windows / QuickBasic - nice and easy but obsolete & couldn't figure out anything past text graphics and simple beeps Windows / VB6 - I liked the language and IDE but limited graphics support (bitblt, kind of confusing), and I never figured out playing >1 sounds at a time, just playing back WAV files one at a time; eventually VB6 became obsolete so I had to start over Windows / VB.NET 1.1 and some C# - the .NET language kept changing and got too complicated with the enterprise OO features JavaScript / HTML5 - figured out canvas graphics, Javascript syntax is easy but I am not crazy about HTML and CSS, and parts of language were too complicated and ugly (prototype stuff, too many libraries & frameworks, no types, etc.) Python / Pygame - mainly playing around with other people's code from pygame.org, still not comfortable with Python, not crazy about certain things like the indentation, no types, too many libraries / choices, dependencies and things changing too much that can break your code, etc. After all these years and languages I still prefer BASIC or VB6 syntax (JavaScript/C syntax is OK, Pascal is OK) and a visual editor. Mainly I don't have a ton of time to invest in learning stuff and if I get busy (which is often the case!), I might put a project down for months at a time, or even a couple years, and by the time I get back to it, the language I wrote it in has updated/changed or become totally obsolete, and I have to go back and fix my code or start over from scratch. I know computers change and all that but come on So anyway, if anyone has any advice or recommendations that would be grand. And hey, if it doesn't exist, it doesn't exist, but I thought I would ask! PS here are some pages I was looking at, in no particular order - if anyone can share any opinions on these, please: SDLBasic XBASIC BASIC Compiler (Windows, Linux) QB64 (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux), QB64 Just BASIC (Windows) SmallBASIC (Windows, Linux, N770/N800, PalmOS, eBookMan) ThinBasic Basic Interpreter (Windows) ElectronJS How to create a 2D game with Python and the Arcade library | Opensource.com FUZE4: Bringing BASIC to Switch — Wireframe Magazine I am really looking for Windows, but this caught my eye! Construct 2 – The Windows favourite Clickteam Fusion 2.5 – The veteran RPG Maker – The RPG specialist Microsoft Small Basic (wikipedia) Unity (probably not what I am looking for) Microsoft MakeCode Arcade (info) Atari Dev Studio A way to make games for the 2600 using BASIC? Hmm... DarkBasic GLBasic Liberty BASIC PureBasic RapidQ REALbasic (Xojo) XBasic Free BASIC Compilers and Interpreters (thefreecountry.com) https://www.gamedesigning.org/career/software/ https://www.websitetooltester.com/en/blog/best-game-engine/#GameSalad_The_Educators_Choice What is the easiest programming language to make games with? - Quora App Development - Infinite Runner - CodaKid Action! is an Atari-specific programming language written by Clinton Parker and sold by Optimized Systems Software (OSS) in ROM cartridge form starting in August 1983. It is the only language other than BASIC and assembler) that had real popularity on the platform and saw any significant coverage in the Atari press; type-in programs and various technical articles were found in most magazines. In comparison, languages like Forth and Logo saw much less use and almost no press coverage. Processing Tutorial: Building a Simple Game | Toptal Much appreciated
  3. Hi all! A new release of FastBasic is available, this is Release 3. This release has with many enhancements, mayor ones: - Added string comparison operators, - Interpreter is about 3% faster in FOR loops and other simple operations. SIEVE benchmark now takes 17 seconds. - The integer-only IDE is now less than 8KB, the floating point IDE is 9.2kB, and there are 200 bytes more available for the programs. - Cross compiler produces smaller executables by only including used parts of the runtime, a simple '? "Hello"' compiles to 453 bytes, including the interpreter and runtime. Minor improvements to the IDE and language: - The IDE now can edit files with lines of up to 255 bytes. - The IDE is a little faster to parse large files. - More abbreviations to the statements, The list of abbreviations is in the manual. Mayor improvements to the cross-compiler and optimizer: - New scripts for the cross-compilers allows passing options to the compiler and linker, also writes label files for debugging. - Cross compiler gives better errors in many cases. - Optimizer for NEG/MUL/DIV/MOD and all bitwise operations. - Optimizer ignores comments and can span multiple lines. - Adds tail-call optimizations (replaces CALL/RET with JUMP and JUMP to RET with RET) And many fixes: - Optimizer no longer ignores negative numbers, - Correct corner cases with MOVE / -MOVE, updates docs. - Cleanup all variables and arrays on run, fixes on memory-clearing function. - Fixes some cases of integer to floating point comparisons. - Fixes parsing of NOT with parenthesis and NOT/NOT. - Fixes errors on line numbers > 255 in the IDE. - Fixes some corner cases in the IDE editor with lines at top/bottom of screen. - Parsing of statements after a ':' ignored errors. As always, full sources and binaries for Atari, Linux, Windows and MacOS are available over Github: https://github.com/dmsc/fastbasic/releases Have fun! Edit: current version is v4, announcement at https://atariage.com/forums/topic/288617-fastbasic-40-tenliners19-release/
  4. Hello all. I am in search of an IDE Plus 2.0 IDE-to-XL/XE interface. It appears they are not for sale that I have been able to see. Does anyone have a lead where they are sold, or is anyone interested in selling one they are not using? Cheers, dreamWeaver
  5. Hello everyone, Today I've released the first Work in Progress video for the AtariX IDE I've been working on. The video showcases some of the tools in the IDE, like the Playfield Editor and the Object Editor, also the HUD which allows you to pick a font and a color for the 6 Digit Score. Next thing I'm going to work on is the LOGIC part of the Object Editor, which will allow developers to add properties to the object (like collisions, input etc) without having to write a single line of code. The main goal of AtariX is to help newbies to get into Atari game development and also for advanced users to build some prototypes, so you can export the Assembly code and add more advanced stuff into your game. If you have any thoughs or ideas, please let me know.
  6. From the album: ADTX 2.5inch SCSI to IDE HD adapter

    ADTX 2.5inch SCSI to IDE HD adapter, hard drive above with adapter attached below
  7. Hello everyone, I'm a beginner on Atari programming and I'm creating an IDE to allow people to create Atari games without having to write a single line of code. I'm learning Assembly as I go through the IDE and add more stuff, it's helping me a lot. This is what I've got so far: A simple IDE that lets you draw the playfield and change the color of both playfield (COLUPF) and background (COLUBK). If you hit the "Play" button, it will produce the following result on an emulator: This also generates an assembly code file, please take a look at this file to help me with the questions: atarix_result.asm So, considering I've read a few articles about programming, I've come to a conclusion that every single line of code matters when you're programming for Atari. So I would like to ask a few questions: 1. Looking at the file (atarix_result.asm), is the generated code bad? What optimizations should I look forward? How can I optimize this code? 2. What kind of things should I avoid when drawing to the playfield? 3. Also, is there a way to get rid of the parts showed on the second screenshot? (Where the arrows point at). Or is this an expected behavior? Thanks!
  8. I'm in starting phase of making an engine/game maker for 8-bit Ataris and would like to hear your thoughts. There are couple of routes it could take and I don't won't to make something no one would use Please answer the poll if topic interests you and you think you have a game in you that's just waiting to come out. Notes: - Plan is to make PC version first (Win,Linux, Mac) and later maybe native 8-bit version if there's interest in it. You write scripts, edit sprites, tiles, map, sfx, music on PC. Press a key and emulator starts your game. - Scrolling is tougher to make so first version will be single screens. If people ask for scrolling we'll see what can be done. - Most important question for me is if there are more coders or users interested in something like this. Game makers like Shoot'm'up construction set on C64 or AGD on Spectrum have almost no scripting capabilities and are limited to a certain types of games. AGD is better as it allows more freedom but still something better for coders exists. Good example is Pico 8 "Fantasy console". It's basically a simple 128x128x16 colors graphis engine with support for sprites, sound fx, music and player input. What makes it great is scripting based on Lua language. So you can make any kind of game you can stick inside memory limitations. - Graphics engine will be simple and probably slow at first with more graphics modes, sprites and speed later. ps. Here is a good article on Pico 8: http://www.indieretronews.com/2015/10/pico-8-8-bit-fantasy-console-from.html Thanks ! Vladimir.
  9. I was curious what peoples' strategies were for managing large .bas source files. (Maybe there's a super-obvious solution I missed, I am kind of a noob at this.) I bring it up because one of the biggest challenges I've encountered so far has been working with really large multi-bank games, where you have thousands of lines of code. I guess I'm just spoiled by OOP and modern IDEs! I've tried Visual bB - which is really slick, and I've heard there's some sort of bookmarking feature, but I didn't dig to deeply into that. What I've actually been doing is using Visual Studio Code and splitting up my source file into several .bas files. (bank1.bas, bank2.bas, etc) Then, I have a build action run a script that merges these parts into one large master .bas file that gets sent to the batari compiler and then the emulator. It actually made things a little easier for me.... I'd be happy to post that if it's useful to anyone. Or maybe there's an easier way you know of?
  10. Hello! After some searching for MADS highlighting for Vim, I haven't found nothing useful, so I decided to write something new… The only solution like this which I found was vim-xasm, the XASM highlighting, but it wouldn't enough good to use with MADS (lack of preprocesor directives and so on) So, here it is! Completely new plugin, suitable for every serious Atari coder with Vim as his main editor. (Note: If Vim isn't your primary editor yet, give it a try! But remember, some of your habits will be quickly broken :>) URL for GitHub Repository (aka "The Giant DOWNLOAD Button"): https://github.com/skrzyp/vim-mads (of course, if you're not familiar with Git, you can still grab this plugin as archive, but you'll lose the ability to update it when something new will be added/corrected) Installation Manually: Put folders syntax and ftdetect in your Vim configs directory: Windows: %USERPROFILE%\vimfiles Rest of world: ~/.vim Recommended: Using Pathogen Clone this repo into your Vim path: git clone https://github.com/skrzyp/vim-mads ~/.vim/bundle/vim-mads Of course, I'm fully open for any suggestions and comments, even if you found any bug or problem, tell me here or make a pull request. I'm also very interested about any feedback from users. Screenshot (sorry, I don't have a code which use a full potential of MADS, but if someone has, send me your pic, please)
  11. Finally, I've managed to make a VisualbB installation wizard, replacing Tinkernut's. I've put the new version of visualbB in it, and this is made with the Inno Setup program. If there are any bugs or unknown things it should not be doing, let me know and I'll fix it. You can get it at https://www.mediafire.com/?38pxw0885565x77 EDIT: I've made it with Inno Setup, it's the link. I'm going to update the installer every time VisualbB updates.
  12. Good morning from Michigan, USA! A few weeks ago, I purchased an AEC-7720u to use with my ICD MIO (1mb version), and was able to have MetalGuy66 send me the ROM upgrade for it (Thank you, MG!). I ordered a new SCSI cable from Amazon last week, and started messing around with things this past weekend but then got to wondering why I was even bothering since I use my SIO2USB for pretty much everything already. So, I figured I'd sell the card and cable and get my investment back at this point. However, while I wait to see if anyone expresses interest in it, I think I'd still like to see if I can get it up and running with the MIO, but the instructions that come with the Acard are far too simplistic for my level of understanding-- and since I never ventured into the hard drive aspects of the MIO back in the day (SCSI drives were simply too prohibitive for me back in the early 90s!!), nor did I ever have to mess with SCSI configurations when I went PC, I am turning to the pros here after not being able to track down via Search any info that seemed helpful. So, I have the MIO and the card and what I presume is a feasible PATA IDE hard drive (I have a 4gb as well as a 13gb). What do I do next? And didn't I read somewhere that the MIO's SCSI interface is upside-down (or was it the BBox that is upside-down)? I presume that I'll need to provide power to BOTH the hard drive as well as the card. The instructions for the card are crazy-vague about the power terminator jumper, saying that its default is on, yet there isn't a jumper ON that connection (J2, I think, since I don't have the card near me atm). As for the hard drive, should it be set to Single? I would presume that the answer is yes, but this is SCSI, so... uncertainty there. In the MIO configuration, I change the drive type to SCSI, of course (right?). But then it asks me for ID, LUN and I'm lost again. I did read on an ST board elsewhere on the internet that ALL of the jumpers need to be off to get an ID of "0" when connecting to an ST. Is that the case here with the MIO, as well? And what is the LUN to be set as? The next thing it asked was something that had 256 as the first option when I spacebar'd it. I didn't go past that because, again, I've no idea what it's for or what I need to set it as. The next thing after that had something like a Start setting and then an End setting. I think I went with 256 as the start, and then did the end as 4096, and ended up with the size (left column) being 1mb. What do I do with either a 4gb or 13gb drive, then? Are there max limits for the Atari or MIO when it comes to these settings? After this set of steps, do I then proceed with SpartaDOS's HDINIT? And what will it need to be told? Lastly, rather than a mechanical drive, should I perhaps look into buying an IDE-to-CF interface instead? And if so, what should I look for in the CF (for example, capacity limits?)? I really do apologize for what looks to me, as I re-read this, a LOT of hand-holding-- I'm hoping that this might not only help ME but also anyone else in the future who is just as unfamiliar with this aspect of 8-bitting. If this works, though, I'll obviously keep the card. But right now, it seems like such a daunting project compared to peeling and repairing mylars on 1200XLs <nervous chuckle>. With appreciation, Tim
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