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My students' Atari VCS games

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Hey all. As some of you know, I've been teaching with the VCS at Georgia Tech for a while now. I finally managed to get all of the games my students have produced over the years posted to my website.

 

http://www.bogost.com/games/student_atari_games.shtml

 

There are just under 40 games right now, a mix of assembly and batari basic. I should add at least 30 more this term thanks to a large intro class in which we'll do batari as a two-week project.

 

If you follow the link, there are also pointers to the courses in which I have taught the VCS, the book I'm co-authoring on the platform, and a lot of my other work if you're interested. Here's a few:

 

LCC 2700: Intro to Computational Media

LCC 8823/CS 8803: Special Topics: The Atari VCS

Video Computer System: A Platform Study of the Atari 2600

Edited by ibogost
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Good stuff. Your students had a lot of good ideas. I also agree that this is a great way to teach basic game and programming concepts.

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Very nice! :cool:

 

I also have to say that your students had some nice ideas, my favorite games so far are dorothy x and construction!

Btw., the download for "simple simon" doesn't work!

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Didn't Intellivision have the same idea: mostly student made games for Mattel Electronics to sell?

 

Think you could get the permission to have those produced on cart and sold? :)

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Some of the games are pretty good. Some aren't totally finished or functioning the greatest (ie: bugs) but they're cool ideas.

 

I've been saying for years that I'd pay if there was a school in New Jersey I could learn ASM aimed directly at Atari 2600 programming.

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When I went to Georgia Tech in the late 1980's, the "co-op" system was still very popular for engineering students. I'm not sure if it still is, but basically you worked one quarter, then went back to school one quarter, etc.

 

Several guys from Tech wrote a lot of the games for the GCE Vectrex as co-ops in the ealier 80's. :)

Edited by R.Cade

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Would it be OK to add them to my website to allow others to play via Java?

 

http://www.JimboGames.com/vcs.html

 

I'm thinking of using jstella on my site to get them running. I can't seem to get any of the Jimbogames games working? I just get color bars? I'd love to know why that is

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When I went to Georgia Tech in the late 1980's, the "co-op" system was still very popular for engineering students. I'm not sure if it still is, but basically you worked one quarter, then went back to school one quarter, etc.

 

Several guys from Tech wrote a lot of the games for the GCE Vectrex as co-ops in the ealier 80's. :)

 

The coop program is still alive and well and popular (although we moved to semesters in the late 90s). I'd love to see if it's possible to trace any old Vectrex programs to GT student developers. Do you have any more information, or know anyone I could talk to?

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Some of the games are pretty good. Some aren't totally finished or functioning the greatest (ie: bugs) but they're cool ideas.

 

I've been saying for years that I'd pay if there was a school in New Jersey I could learn ASM aimed directly at Atari 2600 programming.

 

It's true. Most of them were made in a two week project, and most of them on the pre 1.0 version of bB which had some, well, quirks ;). Anyway, it's always interesting for me to see what ideas they come up with.

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Did the students have any comments upon seeing games like Thrust, Ladybug, Toyshop Trouble, Strat-O-Gems, etc.? I wouldn't expect the students to push the hardware the way those games do but it's neat to see the difference between what can be done with 'normal' code and super-optimized code.

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That "Top Rock" game is awesome! I totally love it.

 

Thanks so much for making these available--I gotta get'em on my CC2 right away!

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Did the students have any comments upon seeing games like Thrust, Ladybug, Toyshop Trouble, Strat-O-Gems, etc.? I wouldn't expect the students to push the hardware the way those games do but it's neat to see the difference between what can be done with 'normal' code and super-optimized code.

 

We talk a lot about design innovation on the machine as it relates to technical innovation oriented around the hardware's natural affordances compared with exploits, tricks, and refinements. My main examples are early Atari/Activision carts, but we do indeed talk about homebrew such as the ones you mention as well. In general, students appreciate seeing the relationships between these games and platforms and the games they are familiar with. Remember that the average college freshman is starting to have a birthdate in the 1990s, so there is a lot of history that they haven't encountered.

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Would it be OK to add them to my website to allow others to play via Java?

 

http://www.JimboGames.com/vcs.html

 

I'm thinking of using jstella on my site to get them running. I can't seem to get any of the Jimbogames games working? I just get color bars? I'd love to know why that is

 

Possibly a browser thing...Firefox and Internet Explorer work. Safari (for Windows at least) will load the applet, but is buggy so its security won't allow file downloads from the same website (i.e. the ROM), and hence the television test screen. (Apple is starting to be very Java hostile...) Opera seems to be buggy as far as Java Applet keyboard focus is concerned.

JLA

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Would it be OK to add them to my website to allow others to play via Java?

 

http://www.JimboGames.com/vcs.html

FYI - using the following doesn't work under Safari (the browser on Macs).

<applet archive="vcs/jstella_0_7.jar" code="jstella/runner/JStellaApplet.class" rom="vcs/caligames.bin" height="480" width="480">
</applet>

Use the PARAM option instead, as in

<applet archive="vcs/jstella_0_7.jar" code="jstella/runner/JStellaApplet.class" height="480" width="640">
<PARAM NAME=ROM VALUE="vcs/caligames.bin">
</applet>

Also note that 480x480 isn't correct - you should use 640x480.

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will you be posting screenshots somewhere of the carts your students made? i would be interested to see some of them.

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I love Catch The Ball. :love: :lust: I'd like to see that incarnation developed a little further. If nothing else, respond to the 2600's reset switch instead of just a one shot starting on run and ending when caught deal. Maybe a way to slowdown or stop the dog catcher. Like after a set number of seconds of running, or catching so many balls, you can drop a pile that the dog catcher has to stop and pick up. But if you run through it, or the ball goes through it, you loose points. :)

 

I know there was a blub about a future 2 player puppie/frisbee game, which also sounds interesting (but maybe not much fun for solo players I think). Looing forward to seeing it too regardless if it's 2 player or not.

 

Anyways, give Kady Rosier, Jenelle Walker and Hitomi Kayama a much heart felt thanks for this game. :)

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I love Catch The Ball. :love: :lust: I'd like to see that incarnation developed a little further. If nothing else, respond to the 2600's reset switch instead of just a one shot starting on run and ending when caught deal. Maybe a way to slowdown or stop the dog catcher. Like after a set number of seconds of running, or catching so many balls, you can drop a pile that the dog catcher has to stop and pick up. But if you run through it, or the ball goes through it, you loose points. :)

 

Yep, i also like catch the ball and i'm missing the option to restart a game with the reset switch in many of those games.

Here's a version where you can restart the game with the reset switch after you're caught.

CatchTheBall__Reset_.bas.bin

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Yep, i also like catch the ball and i'm missing the option to restart a game with the reset switch in many of those games.

Here's a version where you can restart the game with the reset switch after you're caught.

Kool. :cool:

 

Now we just need the fudgy dog piles. :lolblue:

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