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SmittyB

Spire of the Ancients (WIP)

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Looks amazing from the screenshots and videos I've seen!

I'm working on a 7800 Emulator for the DS (based on Prosystem) and it supports Super Cart Large (the 144k stuff) and it has no problem with Donkey Kong XM, Popeye (2.7f, 2.8 or 2.9) and commercial games like Crossbow which are also Super Cart Large (type 2) and 144kb.

 

But for some reason, SotA will not run. I get the intro screen with the text and then part of the splash screen but then it's all garbled up and won't run any further. I can sometimes hear what sounds like in-game title music but I'm far from sure.

 

As this runs on other emulators, I'm sure the problem is me :)

 

But to give me some clue... is there anything unusual about SotA in terms of utilization of the banks or RAM or similar? Something I can follow a lead on?

 

Thanks!

 

Edited by llabnip

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The title screen changes the background colour each line to create the ground and it finishes fairly close to the bottom of the screen. I suppose if the emulator doesn't get the timing right and tries to wait longer than the visible screen that could mess things up.

 

If you can get a photo of how it look when it crashes I'd like to see it. I'm curious as to whether I could figure it out.

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Yeah, it's probably timing related!  There were a number of bugs in the original Prosystem emulator timing that got things wrong (especially in the cycle stealing department) - tried to correct most of them but obviously something is still not right. 

 

On the plus side, I think we've discovered a lovely little Bear-Moose in the corrupted graphics :)

 

image.thumb.png.577fc5c74ae78087defb919a99f3f667.png

Edited by llabnip
clarification
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I think you should have based your emulator on Pengui.net's BupSystem, but don't know if that's open source.

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I think I figured it out... by default I set all carts to "steals cycles" since most carts do... I have a lookup table (by MD5SUM) that can override any settings - but I hadn't put your latest builds into the table so it was using defaults.

 

When I turned off cycle stealing it comes up and runs. It's only running at about 40FPS but I can work on that part :)

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Yeah that's definitely the background not changing line by line as it's supposed to. The coloured area should be compressed and finish in line with the mountain graphics. The black area would then be where the text is, and below that the ground. I change the graphics mode mid-screen hence the corruption.

 

Even if it got past the title screen it would look rubbish in game as well because I do the same thing to draw the HUD, floor, and ceiling.

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19 minutes ago, SmittyB said:

Yeah that's definitely the background not changing line by line as it's supposed to. The coloured area should be compressed and finish in line with the mountain graphics. The black area would then be where the text is, and below that the ground. I change the graphics mode mid-screen hence the corruption.

 

Even if it got past the title screen it would look rubbish in game as well because I do the same thing to draw the HUD, floor, and ceiling.

Appreciate you looking into it! Spire is running now - and is playable though it's really going to be difficult to play on the screen resolution of the DS. I've got 256 x 192 pixels to work with... the walls, gates, monsters, keys, etc. all look fine but the text is going to be hard to read. I can zoom in a bit but the HUD is pretty wide and it starts to cut off rather fast...  I'll see what I can do about adding some scrolling via the shoulder buttons which might just make it playable!

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3 minutes ago, llabnip said:

I've got 256 x 192 pixels to work with

After you able to render to a 320 x 224 buffer offscreen and then draw that shrunken down, at least in width? It shouldn't affect the 160A graphics very much, and if antialiasing is possible the 320A modes should still be vaguely readable.

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Yes, in fact, the DS makes that trivial. But the problem is that the DS will decide what line and row of pixels to drop... which isn't always the best choice. 

 

Here is what I'm facing... I've done my best to zoom in to 300x220 - so some of the pixels top and bottom are off screen but there wasn't anything really useful there and I've zoomed in as much as I can and still keep the HUD fully visible.

 

It's playable... but not ideal. But that's my problem - the game is great!


image.thumb.png.9f3761c2bcafc025cd04a9d7fc505205.png

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On 8/29/2016 at 5:49 PM, SmittyB said:

Update 2020/05/28 - As you can see it looks a little different 4 years on.

0027.png.2ec57fe781c31237533b21fd5ec7d6d7.png

It reminds me a bit of Shining in the Darkness on Genesis or the original Phantasy Star

 

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They're 2 of the main inspirations actually, alongside the Dungeon Master games on Amiga and the Catacomb series on PC.

This style of game is something I've done before because the basic concept is a fairly simple programming exercise (which this started out as) and a few of the ideas including the name come from previous similar projects that never got past the initial demo stages.

 

I haven't given up on this. My employers have just been making a lot of stupid business decisions which have left me too exhausted in the evenings to give this the attention it deserves.

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I feel for you, Smitty. For the past two months, I was working on graphics for phoboz' game project.

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