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DINTAR816

New pacman for atari 2600

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I remember losing the money I had to buy pac-man while riding my bike 5 miles to the local K-mart to purchase it. I was so upset.. My mother was nice enough to give me more money to buy it. Boy was I even more upset after playing the stinker. :lol:

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I remember losing the money I had to buy pac-man while riding my bike 5 miles to the local K-mart to purchase it. I was so upset.. My mother was nice enough to give me more money to buy it. Boy was I even more upset after playing the stinker. :lol:

 

Hahahaha :lol:

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I remember losing the money I had to buy pac-man while riding my bike 5 miles to the local K-mart to purchase it. I was so upset.. My mother was nice enough to give me more money to buy it. Boy was I even more upset after playing the stinker. :lol:

 

That's a great story... ...I think we've all had similar experiences.

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When finished, be cool to see these 4k and 8k versions stuffed into a Xonox Double-Ender type shell. :love:

 

Or create a menu that allows you to select between the two versions of the game. We've done that a few times now. :)

 

..Al

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Or create a menu that allows you to select between the two versions of the game. We've done that a few times now. :)

 

..Al

Guess I'm unfamiliar with them... Which ones?

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Hello, here I bring the latest version of 4k (or at least that I need to fix some bug).
In this version:
I modified a bit the "kernel" to save a few bytes more used in the "playfield", also save about 20 bytes in other parts of the code. :)
I added the single fruit, double fruit, triple keys (as I mentioned before).
I added the "Game over" message.
A "small change" in the third intermission.
Corrected a small error in the sound, which made some sounds could take up to 4 frames to start playing (like the sound of "extra life"). :)

 

Could you please make a PAL 60 version? Only ccolors need to be adjusted.

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Here's a list of games that have menus that let you select between games. IXION and Turbo in particular let you pick between two versions of the same game (the original, unmolested prototype, and the "Enhanced" version of the game):

 

2005 Minigame Multicart

IXION

Piñata

Stella's Stocking

Swoops!

Turbo

 

..Al

 

And all of Spiceware's games have well thought out menus too.

 

I remember losing the money I had to buy pac-man while riding my bike 5 miles to the local K-mart to purchase it. I was so upset.. My mother was nice enough to give me more money to buy it. Boy was I even more upset after playing the stinker. :lol:

 

In 1982 my first Radio DJ job was in Pawhuska Oklahoma. I remember my station did a big promotion for a local downtown TV dealership who sold 2600 games for the new Pac Man cartridge. We put together a cute radio commercial using the 45 of "Pac Man Fever" and played it a lot. So I went over to the store and checked out the game. But the 2600 version was so disappointing and I really felt bad that we were promoting such a sorry game and ripping people off. But it was a small town AM radio station and we needed the money..

Edited by WildBillTX

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Here's a list of games that have menus that let you select between games. IXION and Turbo in particular let you pick between two versions of the same game (the original, unmolested prototype, and the "Enhanced" version of the game):2005 Minigame MulticartIXIONPiñataStella's StockingSwoops!Turbo..Al

Also Sync and Lead.

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I just tried this out on my 7800 and it is AMAZING! I can't believe this is being done in only 4k. If Atari had released this version back in the day, it would have gone down in history as one of the best arcade ports ever for that system.

 

I wish I had a time machine so I could go back to 1982 and sneak this version into Tod Frye's office.

 

It wouldn't have met the project specs. Tod was asked to create a two player version in 4K space. That's why he had to make some of the decisions he did.

 

"Cruise Elroy" speed. The arcade game does this, it's not an error. BTW it's interesting that the original arcade's hiding spot just above and to the right of the starting position *almost* works without any specific coding :)

 

About Frye's version: the "intelligent flicker" code DID exist in some form of proof-of-concept (at least 2 other programmers mention having seen it). None of that apparently exists in the released game, tho...since he started over when the 8k request was denied. The differing colors was his own choice, since he felt that the arcade colors were kind of bland.

 

What "could have been done" is pretty much what we got. Modern homebrews have the advantage of unlimited production time, computing power light years ahead of what they had, and many prior efforts to improve upon / derive solutions from.

 

 

There were not two versions of the game, that's a myth that Tod himself cleared up as well over in the Atari Museum group on Facebook. Likewise, the ghosts flicker on purpose in his game per Tod, he felt it was more ghost like. Additionally, according to him it does include his anti-flicker routine and it was also appropriated for 2600 Asteroids and several other games in development during that time.

Edited by Retro Rogue

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Unrelated, but speaking of "Cruise Elroy" mode, I recently played Namco Museum on my N64. Absolutely no speed up nearing the end of the stage. Felt totally neutered just like the NES version. I thought someone said the Namco Museums (GBA, et al) were arcade accurate.

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Unrelated, but speaking of "Cruise Elroy" mode, I recently played Namco Museum on my N64. Absolutely no speed up nearing the end of the stage. Felt totally neutered just like the NES version. I thought someone said the Namco Museums (GBA, et al) were arcade accurate.

The ports differ depending on which Namco Museum. Some were outsourced to US companies like Mass Media and Digital Eclipse and even those differ between games. The PSX port, despite being done by a company that works closely with Namco (I think it was done by Now Production, but I have to check), is definitely not entirely accurate. Sounds are off, the rest trick doesn't work, and I heard the patterns differ. GBA isn't the most accurate with patterns being off and the direction trick not working (it actually works in the PSX version). Surprisingly, Namco Museum GCN is different from the GBA version and is more accurate with the hold and rest tricks working. DS version was from M2 and seems to be accurate. Alot of the tricks also seem to work in the 360 Namco Museum version. Namco Museum 50th uses emulations (partial in terms of GBA) rather than ports like some of the earlier Namco Museums.

 

Edit: Watched the video of the N64 Namco Museum and it seems to have been ported from the PSX version.

Edited by BrianC

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It wouldn't have met the project specs. Tod was asked to create a two player version in 4K space. That's why he had to make some of the decisions he did.

 

 

 

There were not two versions of the game, that's a myth that Tod himself cleared up as well over in the Atari Museum group on Facebook. Likewise, the ghosts flicker on purpose in his game per Tod, he felt it was more ghost like. Additionally, according to him it does include his anti-flicker routine and it was also appropriated for 2600 Asteroids and several other games in development during that time.

Reading this really bummed me out. I always thought that the poor design was lack of time, lack of memory, and having to meet demands (ie: two player & multiple game versions). I realize that Atari designers were not privileged to have arcade versions at their disposal. Landon Myer played a lot of Donkey Kong to make the game that accurate, even though he admittedly doesn't like the game! I am disappointed that Tod would take it upon himself to decide the colors of the arcade monsters were bland! Additionally, his lack of detail changed Pac-Man forever. He decided they were ghosts, and he made them in the image of ghosts. I was really disheartened to see that he made them flicker on PURPOSE, when they were never even supposed to be ghosts.

 

With that being said, I kind of got over it, because it is what became my childhood memories. I am far from perfect, and I know I have done things in web development that I thought were innovative and "fresh". Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. It is what it is.

 

Additionally, games were not always clear in interpretation. I think about Landon making Pauline's hat into a birthday cake.. LMAO. Huh?? And Buckner and Garcia (Do the Donkey Kong) sing, "You can pick up the umbrella; you can answer the PHONE!" HUH? You mean grab her purse!???

 

For some reason, I still like to visit the 2600 Pac-Man from time to time. It takes me back to the first time I turned on the 2600 and thought, "What the heck am I looking at?" Then I used my imagination to make everything fit into place. I found tricks, like wiggling the joystick in the escape tunnel would make Pac-Man appear at the top of the screen. The player would draw on screen bottom to top, and then would be able to float over the center of the screen. I also noticed all of the places that Pac-Man could stop mid-path, just by holding the joystick down. I wonder if the tunnel trick is an Easter Egg?

 

So, it's really flawed, but it's a fond memory in hindsight I suppose. Just sad to think that some of the flaw was intentional, and it changed the Pac-Man back-story (as limited as it was) forever. Additionally, the "ghost" effect was seen as simply a limitation of the 2600 hardware, which killed Atari even more.

Edited by darryl1970

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Curt Vendel played a lot of Donkey Kong to make the game that accurate

 

 

Curt Vendel... What huh??

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Curt Vendel... What huh??

I don't know what you're talking about?? LOL. Just kidding. I fixed it. At work, and I couldn't remember. Meant Landon.

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This is conversion of Pac-Man is OKAY. I personally think that my Jaguar homebrew is the ultimate, since it uses all 64-bits...

 

post-13491-0-17419600-1417533974_thumb.png

 

I give you.... Pac-Man 2000.. (Pac-Man 2k might be edgier!)

 

Do the MATH!

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I wonder what Tod Frye was thinking when he made the A800 Asteroids. It has some nice multiplayer features, but is a very flawed port, as well. Gameplay is slow, shields, hyperspace, and flipping all have lag, and the shield never times out. It almost makes Pac-Man look like a good port.

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It wouldn't have met the project specs. Tod was asked to create a two player version in 4K space. That's why he had to make some of the decisions he did.

DINTAR816 is doing this awsome port in 4k. But I'm sure Tod had valid reasons for doing it the way he did.

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I realize that Atari designers were not privileged to have arcade versions at their disposal. Landon Myer played a lot of Donkey Kong to make the game that accurate, even though he admittedly doesn't like the game! I am disappointed that Tod would take it upon himself to decide the colors of the arcade monsters were bland! Additionally, his lack of detail changed Pac-Man forever. He decided they were ghosts, and he made them in the image of ghosts. I was really disheartened to see that he made them flicker on PURPOSE, when they were never even supposed to be ghosts.

You're making a lot of assumptions that aren't accurate. The console programmers certainly were able to play the arcade versions during their conversions. In fact in their Gibraltar building they had their own arcade full of these games they were converting. The process usually began with logging a lot of time on the arcade versions getting used to the play mechanics and nuances they had to try and reproduce.

 

It was a very challenging time for these extremely talented programmers. They were being asked to convert bitmapped based games (which is what the big titles largely were by the late 70s/early 80s) to a non-bitmap based system, and were the first to do so (whereas now the ins and outs of doing that are pretty well hashed out). When Curt and I interviewed a lot of these guys in front of their old building in 2012 for our book, they couldn't stress this enough or give enough admiration for what Tod was able to accomplish at the time.

 

Likewise, Atari and Tod didn't create the "ghost" theme, that's what took over soon after the release of the game in the arcades. Both players and the media viewed them as ghosts (because of their look) rather than the generic original monster term. Enough so that when Ms. Pac-Man was released in January '82 they had been officially renamed as ghosts:

 

http://www.arcade-museum.com/manuals-videogames/M/MsPac-Man.pdf

 

http://flyers.arcade-museum.com/?page=flyer&db=videodb&id=707&image=2

 

 

As for the colors, some of that was pressure from marketing as well to make it more kid friendly.

 

 

So, it's really flawed, but it's a fond memory in hindsight I suppose. Just sad to think that some of the flaw was intentional, and it changed the Pac-Man back-story (as limited as it was) forever. Additionally, the "ghost" effect was seen as simply a limitation of the 2600 hardware, which killed Atari even more.

 

Pac-Man and ET had little to do with killing Atari, that's a story that's taken a life of it's own over the years. They were only a very small portion of the problems that were plaguing the company that year. As ex-Atari employee Jerry Jessop put it, they were symptoms not the problems. Atari's financial problems hit in mid '82 due to not tracking the market accurately and forcing retailers to order for all of '82 at once because of the previous year's shortage.

 

Since 1980, Atari's Consumer Division was the golden child of the company as far as Warner was concerned, and Warner did everything in it's power to bolster that division and in turn bolster it's own earnings and stock. Unfortunately it lead to some bad practices like a dual management (where Warner management would often supersede Atari's own management and their decisions) and a lack of any good logistics practices. Warner's other divisions (such as Warner's Music group) had been warning that Warner needed to have Atari adopt the same manufacturing and tracking practices as the music industry. It fell on deaf ears because Warner Communications couldn't see their cash cow declining, and their position on the matter was only solidified even more in 1981 when a shortage of 2600 cartridges for retailers occurred. In fact they were so in demand that retailers were stealing extra boxes from Atari's distribution warehouses when picking up stock, and even organized crime was hijacking shipments. You see, the Consumer industry had also gone through a tremendous amount of growth since the late 70s similar to Coin, expanding beyond the traditional toy stores and toy departments of major retailers into anyone that carried consumer electronics of any type. So towards the end of '81 Atari (under continued pressure from Warner to meet their exceptional growth standards) used the issues from 1981 to pressure retailers to place their orders for the entire year of '82 at once. And to compound the issue, Atari used their sell in numbers to report their quarterly earnings and overall projected earnings for the year. ("Sell In: is the numbers of units shipped to retail. "Sell through" is the total number of units sold to a consumer.)

 

Alarm bells continued to be rung at Warner's other divisions and even their financial partners that things were not sustainable to this magnitude. But it continued to fall on deaf ears until it was too late and they already had a major problem to deal with. By the end the beginning of the summer of' 82 Atari management became aware that their distribution warehouses around the country were packed to the brim with stock that wasn't moving. It was further compounded with retailers canceling orders or starting do look to do returns for credit (a common practice in the retail industry were product is either taken back for credit or subsidized for markdown). Warner management became aware of it not long after, and the response from both companies was to try and keep it hidden and play games by changing report dates and extending their 4th quarter. The matter was made even worse as more competing companies entered the market that year to further dilute the market and of course there was the recession. Gordon Crawford from Capitol Group (major investors in both Warner and Atari and responsible for helping bring the two together) mentioned at the time "At the January (1982) Consumer Electronics Show, there were three or four new video hardware systems and about 50 new software systems - all the warning lights went on for me. Then, at the June CES show, it was worse! There were about 200 new software systems. This was a business that the year before it had essentially been a monopoly, and now there were hundreds of new entrants. By this time, Warner was almost a game stock."

 

Then Warner and Atari couldn't hide what was a happening any longer, and on December 7th (kind of ironic) announced their earnings had been lower than projected. Atari was 80% of the Consumer industry at that time, and when something that large announces earnings problems (especially when analysts had been predicting this was all a bubble ready to burst) you're going to hurt everyone, and shockwaves immediately went through the rest of the Consumer industry. The entire month of December was a downward moving roller coast for those that were publicly traded. By January '83 the layoffs began and throughout the rest of the year companies that had just opened the year before started shuttering. By the end of the year, even larger companies like Mattel announced they were exiting video games.

 

 

DINTAR816 is doing this awsome port in 4k. But I'm sure Tod had valid reasons for doing it the way he did.

Again, it's not a 2-player game. It wouldn't have met the specs. It has nothing to do with just being 4K. The reason why it turned out the way it did was because of the limitations of the project specs (2-player game) vs. the available resources (4K ROM, 128 bytes of RAM). As stated, because he needed resources to track two different mazes he had a choice of either producing a game that looked like it but didn't play like it, or one that didn't look like the arcade version but played close to it. He chose the latter. The later efforts by Atari/GCC eliminate the issue by dropping the second player and adding more ROM space for game code, and these later homebrew efforts do either one or both as well. That's not a cut on DINTAR816's version by any means. But if people are going to compare these later homebrew games then they have to do so realistically.

Edited by Retro Rogue
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"You're making a lot of assumptions that aren't accurate. The console programmers certainly were able to play the arcade versions during their conversions. In fact in their Gibraltar building they had their own arcade full of these games they were converting. The process usually began with logging a lot of time on the arcade versions getting used to the play mechanics and nuances they had to try and reproduce."

 

I wasn't assuming. I was giving the benefit of the doubt and more mistaken than assuming. I recalled reading some a classic developer article that referred to not having access to the game. However I read it wrong, because the one that came to mind was Gary Kitchen, referring to DK (again, not for Atari, but Coleco). I mistook that he didn't have access to the code and help from Nintendo and DID have access to the game. I read that wrong. Regardless, I would consider that more benefit of the doubt than assuming, but thanks for setting that straight. My mistake....

 

Likewise, Atari and Tod didn't create the "ghost" theme, that's what took over soon after the release of the game in the arcades. Both players and the media viewed them as ghosts (because of their look) rather than the generic original monster term. Enough so that when Ms. Pac-Man was released in January '82 they had been officially renamed as ghosts:

 

I don't want to rehash the issue, but I can't express how much it disheartens me to see the integrity of the arcade twisted because of lack of detail, even if it's been adopted by the majority. The arcade machines never posted "ghosts" on the Bezel until Atari released Pac-Mania. (I do find it interesting that Midway followed like stupid sheep in changing the name in the operator's manual... Thanks for sharing that.). Monster isn't "generic" to me, as it explains the flesh leg in the second and third intermission. I have a problem with encouraging people's laziness, just because the general public was too lazy to read the directions posted on Pac-Man, Ms Pac-Man, Jr Pac-Man, and Super Pac-Mant!

 

The arcade consumer instructions takes precedence:

post-13491-0-14852600-1417544561.pngpost-13491-0-01128400-1417544571_thumb.png

 

 

"As for the colors, some of that was pressure from marketing as well to make it more kid friendly. "

I was going by your post that stated Tod made the "ghosts" flicker on purpose. I wasn't referring to the maze colors. You had mentioned that Tod thought the colors of the arcade were too drab, so HE also chose to make the "ghosts" all the same color. I believe this was prior to the edit, or maybe in another post.

"There were not two versions of the game, that's a myth that Tod himself cleared up as well over in the Atari Museum group on Facebook. Likewise, the ghosts flicker on purpose in his game per Tod, he felt it was more ghost like. Additionally, according to him it does include his anti-flicker routine and it was also appropriated for 2600 Asteroids and several other games in development during that time."

 

 

Pac-Man and ET had little to do with killing Atari, that's a story that's taken a life of it's own over the years. They were only a very small portion of the problems...

I am well aware that it wasn't (nor was ET) the problem that single-handedly killed Atari. I am just adding that purposely flickering the "ghosts" and making the colored monsters into white "ghosts" did not APPEAR to be done on purpose. Everybody I know thought it was due to the inability of the Atari 2600 to do any better. My point was that this "purpose" choice appeared more like a weakness of the hardware. THUS, making the VCS look even more antiquated than it actually was.

 

In the end, I hope my point is not lost:

 

I mentioned that I cannot fault anyone for making choices that are not as good in hindsight, as I do that quite often.

 

The focus of my reply was SUPPOSED to be that I was saddened at first, but still like the game for what it is. My point is, even if it didn't START the ghost thing (I believe it was a strong force, due to the popularity of Atari and anticipation for that release), it encouraged changes that bug me to this day. However, looking back, I have fond memories of the game, and I still like to pull it up on my 2600 or Stella from time to time. It has become a part of history, regardless of its shortcomings, and I even have grown to appreciate them.

 

FINALLY: I would love to read Tod's post on Facebook. Can you provide a link? Thanks!!! :grin:

 

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Here is the version in pal 60, also made another version ntsc because I changed the color of the message "game over". :)

The version of pal50 is more complicated to do, I have to change many things, the sounds will be the hardest part, because I have to make it sound equal to 60fps.

Well, this is the final 4k version, unless anyone has any suggestions.


In the 8k version could be done with 2 players if a cartridge as the "F8SC" (with 128 bytes of RAM) is used. :)


pacman2600_4k_pal60.bin

pacman2600_4k_ntsc.bin

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I don't want to rehash the issue, but I can't express how much it disheartens me to see the integrity of the arcade twisted because of lack of detail, even if it's been adopted by the majority. The arcade machines never posted "ghosts" on the Bezel until Atari released Pac-Mania.

 

Actually, the Pac-Mania bezel describes both Funky and Sue as "Monster". Ghost(s) is not used on the bezel. ;)

 

post-18-0-43192500-1417549072_thumb.png

 

I still prefer 'Ghost Monster(s)' though. :grin:

 

 

Well, this is the final 4k version, unless anyone has any suggestions.

 

 

Suggestion...Be less awesome! :dunce:

 

Seriously, looks like you've brought this version as far as it can go with an excellent overall balance. Looking forward to the full blown 8k deal. Thank you again for this amazing effort and work. :thumbsup:

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