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Another Galaga thread

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17 hours ago, jefffulton said:

I'm pretty sure Tempest from Video 61 is on the way soon. 

Video 61 offers a couple of Tempest games.. I was referring to the original, coded by Keithen Hayenga. He started it while employed at Atari in the early 80s, later completed the game and it is now available in the AtariAge store. Would love to see an 8-bit port.

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On 12/2/2019 at 7:04 PM, kiwilove said:

re?

 

As to modifying/upgrading a 5200 with lots more memory, etc.  It makes better sense to simply purchase a 64K or 128K Atari 8-bit computer to run all the various titles not intended for 5200 hardware.

 

Harvey

 

Total 100% disagreement. It would be far easier getting a 64K/128K/256K/1MB RAM upgrade for the 5200 done than it would be to add analog controller support to the A8 or any of the other premium features of the 5200. Even with some modern A8 enthusiasts rewiring controllers to use the Paddle Lines in order to support 3-Fire Buttons, they still do not have Pause/Select/Reset buttons on their controllers or the numeric keypad. Hell, the 7800 doesn't have those either but it does have the advantage of having RAM, CPU, and other useful features available as lines in the cartridge slot whereas the 5200 does not. And the 7800 has 2 128K RAM upgrade options - not counting cartridge based RAM - so it's not outside the wheelhouse to suggest a supported RAM upgrade for the Mighty 5200.

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On 12/6/2019 at 11:57 PM, jefffulton said:

I'm pretty sure Tempest from Video 61 is on the way soon. 

 

How do you figure? The two Tempest games from V61 require 64K RAM - which the Mighty 5200 does not have - and large capacity cartridge ROMs. The programmer of those games is too busy making fake profiles on Facebook to infiltrate 3 groups he's been banned from to rewrite those games to support aggressive bankswitching that a stock 5200 would require to run those games... or allow them to be released as ROMs for the SD Cart Adapter which they're dead-set against.

 

It would be interesting to see those games run on a 5200. If the Dual POKEY audio support were left in them, it might compel some 5200 owners to try to install the A8 Dual POKEY upgrades in their consoles...

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41 minutes ago, Lynxpro said:

 

Total 100% disagreement. It would be far easier getting a 64K/128K/256K/1MB RAM upgrade for the 5200 done than it would be to add analog controller support to the A8 or any of the other premium features of the 5200.....

I'm not into doing hardware mods - that's the main reason why I'll recommend going for something ready made, and readily available.

And the problem with upgrading the 5200 console is that you'll be creating an even smaller niche audience - and who's gonna write/develop games for that smaller market?

 

I don't understand the very strong 2600 support that is still going because I view the blocky graphics as too limiting - and the use of the Harmony cartridge as some kind of cheat.  Now if you could get the 2600 developers to move onto using the Atari 8-bit hardware - we could see all kinds of exciting new titles created - maybe?

 

Take the example of creating a Galaga conversion (equally it could be an arcade like platform game?).  We've seen the 2600 version (using the Harmony cart) - but what if this game can be done well? using standard Atari 8-bit hardware (5200/400/800/etc) - that may even better the 7800 conversion?).  It would be using it's hardware to it's utmost.

If you don't want to be limited by the hardware - the SNES hardware would be the one to go for - no real limitation for sprites, backgrounds, etc.  And if you wanted the best home system - I would say that some kind of special home-built rig for running Mame in which you can pick any coin-op game from hundreds of titles.  Those who can - can build their own controls for use with a large screen TV would have the best videogames beast possible - better than simulating a coin-op in the home.

 

But I'd guess that part of the attraction of the Atari 8-bit hardware - are it's limitations, and is dated to the early 80s' - and what inventiveness is needed to make a game standout and for it to be playable and fun.  A 2600 game in comparison - doesn't look as good.  Missing colours and resolution (detail).

 

Harvey

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12 hours ago, kiwilove said:

 

I don't understand the very strong 2600 support that is still going because I view the blocky graphics as too limiting - and the use of the Harmony cartridge as some kind of cheat.  Now if you could get the 2600 developers to move onto using the Atari 8-bit hardware - we could see all kinds of exciting new titles created - maybe?

I think it's a cultural thing - the 2600 sold more by at least an order of magnitude and it has many more fans to this day.   The Harmony cartridge might be a cheat, but so are some of the various hardware upgrades - VBXE, 65816 mods, etc - that are available for the Atari 8-bit computers. 

 

Of the three generations of hardware from the same design team - 2600, 5200/8-bit and Amiga, I think the 5200/8-bit line is the most interesting because the hardware has enough features to make some very nice looking games, but it also has some limitations that can be overcome by clever use of the hardware features.  The base 2600 is too limited no matter how much cartridge code space you throw at it, and the Amiga hardware is just so powerful that there isn't as much of an imperative to use the hardware creatively.

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5 hours ago, FifthPlayer said:

Of the three generations of hardware from the same design team - 2600, 5200/8-bit and Amiga, I think the 5200/8-bit line is the most interesting because the hardware has enough features to make some very nice looking games, but it also has some limitations that can be overcome by clever use of the hardware features.  The base 2600 is too limited no matter how much cartridge code space you throw at it, and the Amiga hardware is just so powerful that there isn't as much of an imperative to use the hardware creatively.

I did give up following the Amiga - because like the Saturn hardware - few developers were putting in the effort to understand how to use it's hardware to it's utmost.  Maybe I should revisit the Amiga - if there's the software that does show what it really can do?

Instead I went to the SNES - which had the games showing what it's hardware can do.  Never regretted this because of the arcade action games present there.

3D simulations and the like - were better suited for the 16-bit computers and that is where they excelled.

 

Harvey

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21 hours ago, Lynxpro said:

 

How do you figure? The two Tempest games from V61 require 64K RAM - which the Mighty 5200 does not have - and large capacity cartridge ROMs. The programmer of those games is too busy making fake profiles on Facebook to infiltrate 3 groups he's been banned from to rewrite those games to support aggressive bankswitching that a stock 5200 would require to run those games... or allow them to be released as ROMs for the SD Cart Adapter which they're dead-set against.

 

It would be interesting to see those games run on a 5200. If the Dual POKEY audio support were left in them, it might compel some 5200 owners to try to install the A8 Dual POKEY upgrades in their consoles...

I just remember the developer talking about it.  You are right though,  it sounds like it was too big and that's why it has not been ported. 

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I just got my AtariMax SD cart last night and tonight added the Playsoft demo to my card ... WOW! 😮  For all that is holy in this world, I hope this demo gets turned into a real playable game. Unbelievable how smooth and fluid the soft-sprite engine is!!! 

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5 hours ago, kiwilove said:

I did give up following the Amiga - because like the Saturn hardware - few developers were putting in the effort to understand how to use it's hardware to it's utmost.  Maybe I should revisit the Amiga - if there's the software that does show what it really can do?

Instead I went to the SNES - which had the games showing what it's hardware can do.  Never regretted this because of the arcade action games present there.

3D simulations and the like - were better suited for the 16-bit computers and that is where they excelled.

 

Harvey

 

The Amiga side has always been about upgrading their systems to the max. They have a plethora of 68020/30/40/60 and Vampire CPU upgrades and all sorts of schemes to get the older systems running AGA graphics. None of the programmers into coding games for retro systems would want to code for a stock Amiga 500 - or an Atari 520ST(e) - with only 512K RAM. Hell, you want 2MB or better on an ST just to support CF/SD options like the UltraSatan devices. Even the developers back in the day really wanted to support 1MB minimum on both the Amiga and the ST but the installed user base prevented them from doing so until later in the lives of the two competing platforms. [and the Amiga platform had it even worse with the Amiga 1000 having shipped standard with just 256K RAM originally, which was pretty useless. Atari Corp ended up ditching plans for the 130ST and only shipped a few of the 260ST because anything below 512K was considered useless...in 1985].

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On 9/17/2019 at 5:11 PM, AverageSoftware said:

Don't need Galaga.  Galaxian has always been the better game anyway.

 

Yes, I just went there.

NOTHING beats the original sounds from Galaxian in the arcade. Takes me back.

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I always thought that Atari 7800 version of Galaga is the best version that is possible on 8-bit system. I was wrong! This could be much better on older system. Its just amazing. Playsoft - please keep up the great work. I hope this project will turn into full game.

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On 12/11/2019 at 6:07 PM, DrVenkman said:

I just got my AtariMax SD cart last night and tonight added the Playsoft demo to my card ... WOW! 😮  For all that is holy in this world, I hope this demo gets turned into a real playable game. Unbelievable how smooth and fluid the soft-sprite engine is!!! 

 

Did you download Playsoft's conversion of Slime so it can be played on the 5200 with the CX53 Trak-Ball as the Great Architect himself originally intended?  :)

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23 minutes ago, Lynxpro said:

 

Did you download Playsoft's conversion of Slime so it can be played on the 5200 with the CX53 Trak-Ball as the Great Architect himself originally intended?  :)

Link please.😀

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On 12/11/2019 at 11:01 PM, Zonie said:

NOTHING beats the original sounds from Galaxian in the arcade. Takes me back.

Galaxian Arcade for the 5200 please. Then I will finally be able to sell my Colecovision!

Edited by LaserCat
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6 hours ago, LaserCat said:

Galaxian Arcade for the 5200 please. Then I will finally be able to sell my Colecovision!

 

Still need Pepper II on an Atari machine and then I will agree with you :P

 

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On 11/12/2019 at 2:24 PM, playsoft said:

I have been playing around with a Galaga clone. It's on hold for now but when I come back to it next year I will look at the expanding formation. That will be the make or break point for me, if I can do something acceptable I will go ahead with it otherwise I will move onto something else. My aim is to try and do something along the lines of the NES version since I think that is also using playfield for the formation (although it has lots of hardware sprites, too many in a row will flicker). The NES has the advantage that it has more characters available and it isn't spending huge amounts of CPU time drawing software sprites, so I won't be able to match it but hopefully I can do something in a similar vein. Attached is where I'm currently at, pressing 1 or 2 switches between single and double ship.

test5200.bin 32 kB · 151 downloads

Man, that is awesome !!!
I don't see any problem with it :)

Wish you luck in handling expanding formation !

 

 

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Wow, this is super impressive!

 

Screenshot from Jum52 emulator:

 

 

snap.png

Edited by jum
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That Galaga 5200 ROM is extremely impressive for being just a demo. If Playsoft is going to finish it, then I would love to do the music for it. I put together a small sampling of jingles I covered with Raster Music Tracker if anyone is interested. I hope to see this project finised!

Galaga.zip

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On 2/9/2020 at 11:43 PM, Jaden (JRH) said:

That Galaga 5200 ROM is extremely impressive for being just a demo. If Playsoft is going to finish it, then I would love to do the music for it. I put together a small sampling of jingles I covered with Raster Music Tracker if anyone is interested. I hope to see this project finised!

Galaga.zip 2.42 kB · 7 downloads

Thank you. It's really nice to see someone being proactive like this. They sound great and normally I'd jump at any RMT music on offer, but in this case I am up against it with both CPU cycles and memory.

 

The RMT player usually needs 1.5K for its code and 1K for data tables plus the space for the RMT files. Your files are about 2K so that's 4.5K in total. Although you don't get to hear much of it, the demo includes most of the audio converted from 7800 Galaga (typically the sound effects that I couldn't convert, the enemy death sounds, are those which feature most prominently). Attached is a xex, you can step through the music and sound effects with the trigger. Your music is better but the whole package here comes in at 1.8K and will require less processor time to service.

 

If it does progress further then maybe I could run things by you to see what can be improved. I probably won't get around to looking at this again until later in the year. In the meantime, if you are interested in doing some RMT music, I am currently working on something that needs some good music. Let me know and I'll send you details so you can see if it's something you'd like to do.  

 

music.xex

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Sure, I'd love to work on some music for you. I'm not super familiar with RMT, but I can definitely spend more time practicing with it to help with your project. Send me the details whenever you feel comfortable to.

 

As for Galaga, I personally hope that this one gets finished. You don't have to do it right away, of course. But the Atari 8-Bit line is definitely in need of a proper Galaga port. And your demo is pretty great. So, I hope that this one gets finished eventually. I tried out your demo and a lot of the music was very off-key. I'll keep working on mine, but I'll have to find ways to make smaller files. Good luck on your projects and thanks for responding.

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On 2/9/2020 at 6:43 PM, Jaden (JRH) said:

That Galaga 5200 ROM is extremely impressive for being just a demo. If Playsoft is going to finish it, then I would love to do the music for it. I put together a small sampling of jingles I covered with Raster Music Tracker if anyone is interested. I hope to see this project finised!

Galaga.zip 2.42 kB · 16 downloads

I like these sounds. It's good to hear an Atari system with some accurate Galaga effects.  I'm anxious to hear how the explosion and background droning will sound.

On 2/11/2020 at 8:09 PM, Jaden (JRH) said:

Sure, I'd love to work on some music for you. I'm not super familiar with RMT, but I can definitely spend more time practicing with it to help with your project. Send me the details whenever you feel comfortable to.

 

As for Galaga, I personally hope that this one gets finished. You don't have to do it right away, of course. But the Atari 8-Bit line is definitely in need of a proper Galaga port. And your demo is pretty great. So, I hope that this one gets finished eventually. I tried out your demo and a lot of the music was very off-key. I'll keep working on mine, but I'll have to find ways to make smaller files. Good luck on your projects and thanks for responding.

The 7800 had terrible sound. The Galaga effects and music was actually impressive for the TIA chip, which is unable to reproduce many notes on the musical scale. That is the reason things are randomly off key. The other shortcoming of the 7800 version is only having two sound channels. The monophonic tunes are very hollow and tinny, but they're pretty impressive for what the programmer had to work with. Especially considering how later programmers only managed to get flatulence sounds from the chip, such as Mario's walking in DK.

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