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Atarius Maximus

Cave-In (PAL50/60 versions available)

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Those two games you mention weren't produced with bAtari Basic. I think this was. There are limitations.

 

Perhaps there is a market or interest for games programmed in this language but I don't know why one would spend the effort using a language that has such limitations.

 

The original post asked for feedback which I provided. My preference is not to have blocky graphics ala "Superman." If this is not possible or the goal of this project, then disregard my feedback and move on.

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My goal is to be able to produce games. I am incapable of learning ASM at the moment, but already knew a little BASIC from my C64/Vic 20 days. This was pretty easy to pick up and make something.

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Those two games you mention weren't produced with bAtari Basic. I think this was. There are limitations.

 

Perhaps there is a market or interest for games programmed in this language but I don't know why one would spend the effort using a language that has such limitations.

 

The original post asked for feedback which I provided. My preference is not to have blocky graphics ala "Superman." If this is not possible or the goal of this project, then disregard my feedback and move on.

 

I appreciate you taking the time to play the game and make suggestions, they're always welcome. At this point, I really can't make any more changes due to the limitations of the bB environment that have been mentioned. I've been working on this for several years and have listened to and implemented lots of suggestions from forum members, but now I'm out of ROM space and I'm pretty happy with the end result.

 

I'm not trying to be crass here, but many people, including myself, actually enjoy the challenge of making a game within the limitations of this environment. It was fun pushing the limits of what I could do with bB, this game actually uses the highest playfield resolution that is possible with the standard kernel. I did the best I could with what I had to work with, and I think the end result is pretty cool. My inspiration for the game was my fondness for the original Atari Adventure game and Raiders of the Lost Ark, which I think it at least matches (or surpasses) graphically. bB games may not be the flashiest, but there are some really good ones that have been released - it's not always about which game has the best graphics. :) Superman was one of my favorites as a kid. ;)

 

Steve

Edited by Atarius Maximus

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Those two games you mention weren't produced with bAtari Basic. I think this was. There are limitations.

 

Perhaps there is a market or interest for games programmed in this language but I don't know why one would spend the effort using a language that has such limitations.

 

The original post asked for feedback which I provided. My preference is not to have blocky graphics ala "Superman." If this is not possible or the goal of this project, then disregard my feedback and move on.

 

Well, you're certainly making a lot of friends in this forum - think about who your audience is... batari Basic language allows the 'average Joe' with some BASIC programming skills to create their own games. Feel free to learn assembly language though.

 

The superchip playfield graphics are about the best you can get. The game is not "blocky" at all...

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I did the best I could with what I had to work with, and I think the end result is pretty cool.

 

I concur. It's a fun game. :)

I've enjoyed watching its development from start to finish.

 

-John

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[*]The graphics are too blocky

[*] This is an example of where the graphics need to be improved. If the player has to ask what they are, then the graphics need improvement.

 

I hear ya. I was trying to play Adventure the other day, but I just couldn't enjoy it. The knight is a SQUARE for God's sake! And have you played Breakout? The ball isn't even round. It's another square! You can't seriously expect a square cube to bounce the way a sphere would! And don't even get me started on Combat.

 

/snark

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Those two games you mention weren't produced with bAtari Basic. I think this was. There are limitations.

 

Perhaps there is a market or interest for games programmed in this language but I don't know why one would spend the effort using a language that has such limitations.

 

The original post asked for feedback which I provided. My preference is not to have blocky graphics ala "Superman." If this is not possible or the goal of this project, then disregard my feedback and move on.

 

I appreciate you taking the time to play the game and make suggestions, they're always welcome. At this point, I really can't make any more changes due to the limitations of the bB environment that have been mentioned. I've been working on this for several years and have listened to and implemented lots of suggestions from forum members, but now I'm out of ROM space and I'm pretty happy with the end result.

 

I'm not trying to be crass here, but many people, including myself, actually enjoy the challenge of making a game within the limitations of this environment. It was fun pushing the limits of what I could do with bB, this game actually uses the highest playfield resolution that is possible with the standard kernel. I did the best I could with what I had to work with, and I think the end result is pretty cool. My inspiration for the game was my fondness for the original Atari Adventure game and Raiders of the Lost Ark, which I think it at least matches (or surpasses) graphically. bB games may not be the flashiest, but there are some really good ones that have been released - it's not always about which game has the best graphics. :) Superman was one of my favorites as a kid. ;)

 

Steve

 

I agree with you that a lot of games have pushed aside game play for flashy graphics. This is why my friend and I have started playing with the bB enviroment and the 2600. We both know Flash, VB, C#, and Java, but want the challenge of limited space and graphics. We also have great memories and fondness for the old games on the 2600. Even recently on the xbox 360 we put in the xbox atari aniversary game and spent 5 hours playing combat, yar's revenge, outlaw, etc. and had a great time with the blocky graphics.

 

I find this game to have great game play and for the system it is built for great graphics. Good job.

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I get the impression that rmaerz was really referring to the lo-res nature of playfield graphics, as opposed to players and missiles and the ball. For example, Defender II doesn't use playfield graphics at all, at least not that I know of. The "hi-res" landscape was drawn with missile 1 and the ball. If that's what he was really complaining about-- the lo-res nature of the playfield-- then it has nothing to do with batari Basic per se.

 

Michael

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I'm really trying to get this finished up! This will probably be the final version, I just have to force myself to play this game for the 3,883rd time (just a guess) to try and make sure there are no major gameplay bugs. I haven't found anything in a few playthroughs on level 1 today.

 

This *is* going to be released on cartridge, the last step for me now is to supply Al with the final binary. I'd like to try this one last time on real hardware too, which means I'll have to dig for my CC2 which has been in storage with all my other Atari related stuff for a long time. So, here it is, what hopefully is the final version of Cave-In.

 

cavein230.bin

CaveIn230.txt

 

Just as a review from a previous post, here are the known issues that will remain in the game in the final release:

 

1. You might get stuck in a wall. I've experienced this once or twice in the hundreds (over a thousand, maybe?) of hours of playtime I put in, but it's been reported by at least one person who's playtested the game. Since I was never able to consistently reproduce the problem, I can't say with 100% certainty that it's fixed.

 

2. If you drop the shield inside the inivisible maze, it changes to half size when dropped. A minor issue that I'm not going to fix.

 

3. The Healthpack/gun upgrade may appear in an inaccessible location - I've minimized the probability of it happening, but it might happen. If you're really trying to get one, shoot the enemies in more open areas of the screen.

 

4. If you switch directions with the bullet in mid-path, it switches paths too. It's a compromise for ROM space at this point, I'm not going to change it. Every adventurer needs a handgun with guided bullets, right?

 

5. Lastly, in the locked caves, rocks will start falling after you kill an enenmy. The first rock to fall will fall from the position that the enemy was killed, after that they will fall from the top of the screen to the bottom. There isn't enough ROM space to resolve this problem, and I consider it to be minor anyway.

 

 

Here are some other issues that might be perceived as bugs, but are actually in the game by design. They're not bugs.

 

1. You cannot exit locked caves once you've entered it until you have found the crown piece.

 

2. You can kill enemies by pressing fire when you're holding the shield - even if you don't have the gun. Think of it as swinging your shield at them.

 

3. Enemies will die after attacking you 7 times. This was put in to give you a fighting chance when you don't have a gun - think of this as hand to hand combat and you will always (eventually) win the fight.

 

4. You drop your gun if you lose a health block (10 hits) in games 2 and 3. A quick note about how the health system works: You start with 80 units of health, represented by 8 blocks on the on-screen health meter. One unit of health (1 block on the screen) represents 10 points of health. For every 10 health points you lose, one block will disappear on the screen.

 

5. You lose a heatlh unit with every room change in game 2 after you have 3 blocks left, and all the time in game 3. Once you're down to 3 blocks left, you have 30 units left, or 30 room moves. You'll have to plan carefully to make it back to the health recharge room when you get low on health.

 

6. You can't re-enter the boss room once you've killed it.

 

7. The screen is supposed to shake when you touch a wall or fire the gun. Some people like it, some don't, but that's how I want it to be.

 

8. When you get down to three health blocks left, your character is injured and will move more slowly. This is in all three levels.

 

9. Lastly, there is an easter egg that no one has found to date. It does provide an in-game bonus, so it's worth finding. There is also one "cheat" in the game, I'll let you all figure out what it is and how to activate it. :)

 

Here are the differences between the three difficulty levels:

 

Game 1 - Beginner

Enemies move at normal speed and never have a fast attack

No health reduction when changing rooms

Keys are always hidden in the same rooms

You start out with your gun, and you will never lose it.

 

Game 2 - Intermediate

Enemies move at normal speed with occasional fast attacks

1 point health reduction when you change rooms only after you are down to 3 health blocks left

Key locations are randomized

You start out with no gun - you will have to find it, either in the hidden room or dropped by an enemy.

 

Game 3 - Advanced

Enemies move at top speed all the time

1 point health reduction when you change rooms at all times

Key locations are randomized

You start out with no gun - you will have to find it, either in the hidden room or dropped by an enemy.

Falling rocks in the locked caves will fall twice as fast

 

Steve

Edited by Atarius Maximus

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Just putting my name on "the list" of people who want to buy it when it's released in cartridge format! :-)

 

It's now available for purchase in the AtariAge store.

 

http://atariage.com/...ct_detail&p=931

 

A few reviews have been released so far, and they're both positive. icon_smile.gif

 

http://www.retrogamingtimes.com/rtm71/#sleuth

http://2600connection.atari.org/cavein.pdf

Edited by Atarius Maximus

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With many thanks to Philsan and RevEng, I now have a PAL50 and PAL60 version of Cave In available. Philsan helped me with all of the PAL color palette changes, and RevEng gave me a great deal of help working through some timing issues and other code changes. Thanks so much to both of you for your help!

 

I've attached a zip file with the latest PAL builds. If you want to rebuild the bins, be sure to stick the std_kernel.asm and std_overscan.asm in the same directory that you compile the basic files in.

Steve

CaveInPAL.zip

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Last January when I posted the PAL versions that RevEng and Philsan helped me with, RevEng was able to free up about 2k in ROM space by making some code optimizations for me. The extra space doesn't really allow me to make any changes to the actual gameplay as the bank with the main loop has only 1 byte free. I decided to use the extra space to add in a map screen. To view the map screen toggle the Color/BW switch (F3/F4 in Stella). The blinking squares are the cave entrances and the colored icon is your present location. The map doesn't show the room connections, so two adjacent squares might not actually be connected. If I had started developing this map screen from the beginning I would have changed the actual room layout to better suit the map screen. It's not perfect, but it still helps. Also, the original layout has some overlapping areas so a few sections of the map have a line drawn that shows how they connect.

 

The map seems to work fine and I also haven't noticed any bugs that may have been introduced by making this change. I had to disable the map screen in certain rooms (like the cave entrances and the hidden switch room) because it was causing problems that I don't have the ROM space in other banks to resolve. I've test played it off and on the past few days, but not nearly as thoroughly as the original version.

 

EDIT: I spent a little while playing with this update and noticed a bug. If you call up the map screen when you're at a cave entrance, very bad things happen. This little update isn't suitable for a cart. I just don't have the time to fully platest this version. Enjoy it on your harmony, and remember to never call up the map when you're in front of a cave gate. :)

 

Steve

post-2143-0-50841700-1344536360_thumb.jpg

CaveInNTSC-Update.bin

CaveInPAL60-Update.bin

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Downloaded with thanks for giving me something to play over the weekend. I think the map is a great idea - I'd love to see this used in other games. :)

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Secrets Revealed!

 

It's been four years since Cave In was released in the AtariAge store and no one has found the easter egg yet. :) Since so much time has passed I thought I'd share that secret along with some other the secrets in the game. Don't look of course if you still want to discover everything yourself. Have Fun!

 

 

 

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I can't enter the final room after beating the cobra and I have crown. The room won't change into the version with an opening on the top.  I can't map the is posted online because I can''t the tinny tiny numbers and can't zoom it in on internet explorer or whatever browser windows has now.

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