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TheTIGuy

Games YOU would like to see ported to TI-99

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Ok, so after the Oregon Trail (California Bound) Project, I am rather bored, and need a new challange!

Are there any games (Preferably text-based) that you would like to have on the TI-99 series?

Depending on the size of the project, the game(s) may or may not get their own thread.

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Of all the games I'd like to see converted, I'd really, really, really like to see a decent version of BATTLEZONE!

Sure, it's not going to use vector graphics, but heck, neither does the TRS-80 version shown below...

 

Jump to 00:45 for the action....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roLr987S1u4&index=2&list=PLshIznEcyXK4DfQfZjuTK7GuCm4gZLBzc

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The TRS-80 has direct access to video RAM. It's been proven that vector graphics are possible with the TI video chip, it's just a question of how fast the 9900 can do it.

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Boulder Dash, Lords of Midnight, Star Raiders, Gridrunner and Impossible Mission would be five feasible titles I'd like to see from a variety of platforms. None of which would've happened back in the TI's heyday but now with memory upgrades and large carts are very achievable.

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So you'd preferrably aim at text based games in BASIC that will port without too much trouble? I don't know how much of a lasting value these games have, but a few suggestions:

 

Prime Time: http://gamebase64.com/game.php?id=24399

Elite Gramophone Company: http://gamebase64.com/game.php?id=11527

 

I used to like Software Star by Kevin Toms but it isn't in BASIC so it would require a more thorough rewrite or if you just make your game inspired by it.

http://gamebase64.com/game.php?id=7000

 

Then you have all the adventure games of course. You might also be interested in more graphic oriented games.

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Look at the list the Jim Gerrie ported to the MC-10. Those are all BASIC and should be doable.
There are a couple machine language subroutines he uses from time to time, but you should probably port from the programs he ported from anyway.

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I get a 404 when trying to download the code... I have been working on porting Executive Suite, but I never got too far...

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Yeah, the Latif server was brought offline a while ago. You can try the CBM File Search instead, copy pasting part of the broken URL.

 

Jim has a lot of games for the MC-10 which definitely should be doable on the TI-99/4A, so that is a good suggestion. You could probably even include custom graphics to prettify them a bit.

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So you'd preferrably aim at text based games in BASIC that will port without too much trouble? I don't know how much of a lasting value these games have, but a few suggestions:

 

Prime Time: http://gamebase64.com/game.php?id=24399

Elite Gramophone Company: http://gamebase64.com/game.php?id=11527

 

I used to like Software Star by Kevin Toms but it isn't in BASIC so it would require a more thorough rewrite or if you just make your game inspired by it.

http://gamebase64.com/game.php?id=7000

 

Then you have all the adventure games of course. You might also be interested in more graphic oriented games.

But I don't know waht to do with these "T64" files.... gaaahhhhhh!....

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1. Use some command line tool like cbmconvert to turn T64 into PRG.

2. Use another command line tool like petcat that comes with the VICE emulator to detokenize the PRG into text.

3. Open your text editor and start hacking.

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While I admire your desire to write programs using TI BASIC only, you really should familiarize yourself with, at the very least, Extended BASIC, as it offers so much more to work with. Otherwise, you'll be very limited to what you're going to be able to do - no sprites, no access to additional RAM, one command per line, terrible IF-THEN implementation... you'll spend more time trying to figure out how to program something that's so much more simple to do on other computers of the era.

 

Once you've got that some experience with XB and if you are looking for a challenge, then go back to TI BASIC and see what your skills can come up with despite its limitations. TI BASIC and the Beginner's BASIC tutorial were an absolutely awesome introduction to programming (it's what got me started in late 1982) but if you want any hope of making something worth playing at any semblance of speed, you'll have to move on to Extended BASIC and/or the other languages available on this platform.

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A few suggestions:

 

Coup d'Etat - a Sharp MZ80 magazine listing game published back in 1982. Wraithchild was going to take a stab at converting it to the 8-bit Atari.

 

Subspace Striker - a ZX81/VIC20 game from Pixel.

 

Trader - a three-part "adventure" for the ZX81 and VIC20 - also from Pixel.

 

Football Manager (the VIC version had no graphics)

 

 

Looking forward to trying Oregon Trail when I get my TI out next.

 

Thanks

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While I admire your desire to write programs using TI BASIC only, you really should familiarize yourself with, at the very least, Extended BASIC, as it offers so much more to work with. Otherwise, you'll be very limited to what you're going to be able to do - no sprites, no access to additional RAM, one command per line, terrible IF-THEN implementation... you'll spend more time trying to figure out how to program something that's so much more simple to do on other computers of the era.

 

Once you've got that some experience with XB and if you are looking for a challenge, then go back to TI BASIC and see what your skills can come up with despite its limitations. TI BASIC and the Beginner's BASIC tutorial were an absolutely awesome introduction to programming (it's what got me started in late 1982) but if you want any hope of making something worth playing at any semblance of speed, you'll have to move on to Extended BASIC and/or the other languages available on this platform.

I am trying to learn XB, but I have been coding on TI-BASIC like (very limited) BASICs since I was was 5 (That was 7 years ago) so it is rather hard. I am trying to learn PASCAL,and later C, C++, Java, ect.

EDIT: That is also why I "Betrayed" the TI. TI-BASIC sucks! The only reason I have a TI is my grandpa gave me one, and he got it for me because I wanted an early 80s/late 70s computer, but he ain't exactly rich...

Edited by TheTIGuy

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One note for @trev2005 on his list of desired ports: Boulder Dash was ported to the TI around 1990. It was sold under the Boulder Dash title for the TI with a MiniMemory in Europe by the Legio Computer Center in Holland, and as Rock Runner for the Editor Assembler by Asgard in the US.

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... but if you want any hope of making something worth playing at any semblance of speed, you'll have to move on to Extended BASIC and/or the other languages available on this platform.

 

A very true statement. Back when I first had a TI, I never had Extended BASIC. But I remember being given a cassette of BASIC games from TI called Oldies but Goodies Games-I. One game included was a word scramble game that does a lot of character plotting on the screen so it can print without scrolling. None of the games on this cassette can run in Extended BASIC without modifications due to using characters in character sets 15 and 16, but I was able to modify Word Scramble simply by changing a loop that defined character colors to only go to character set 14. I made no other changes to the game. Running this version of the game in TI BASIC and then Extended BASIC - it's a very noticeable speed difference, and this game makes no attempt to take advantage of anything Extended BASIC has to offer. If I really went through the game and changed it to use multiple statement lines, or DISPLAY AT instead of the character plotting routine, it could be made much faster.

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The Dallas Quest was released for the Apple ][, Atari 8-bit, Commodore 64 and TRS-80 CoCo. Not a trivial port, but you already got plenty of suggestions of such.

http://www.mobygames.com/game/dallas-quest/screenshots

 

While it seems the only game Datasoft published for the TI-99/4A was Zaxxon, based on its name Dallas should've been suitable if not TI had left the market prior to that.

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I remember playing Dallas Quest on the Apple ][ back when in the mid to late 80s. It was a fun little game for the time and would be apropos in that a) Dallas was an iconic show from the 80s and b) it's based in Texas so what better platform than the TI?

 

But based on this quote above: That is also why I "Betrayed" the TI. TI-BASIC sucks!

 

...I'm guessing he's no longer pursuing this endeavor. Plus it would indeed be a major undertaking, even for someone who is familiar with TI programming languages, without any source code for reference.

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As far as I understand, The Dallas Quest mostly takes place elsewhere than Dallas, Texas and contains rather obscure challenges along the way. Only a small part of it contains interaction with Dallas characters. It is like the production company said "Yes, you might base a computer game on our show if you make sure that it doesn't interfer with the plot of the show or does anything to the characters".

 

Personally I would reverse engineer the map, objects and challenges and reimplement the adventure in a different engine if it was me but since it anyway would be very difficult to obtain licensing to sell (if that ever was planned), one could just as well come up with their own fan-based Dallas game of the era. Perhaps even a long lost sibling to the Ewings who invests in integrated circuit manufacturing instead of oil...

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Yeah, it was a pretty ridiculous scenario, with the people from the show being pretty much bit players (the game's packaging makes it seem like you will have all kinds of ways to interact with them) and most of the actual adventuring being done in the jungle. It ends up being closer to Telarium's Amazon than what one would expect from a game based on the Dallas TV show.

 

Here's a walkthrough for anyone interested:

 

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