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cmadruga

Shadow of the Beast demake experiment

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Posted (edited)

@skywaffle BTW I agree with you on need to reduce the use of gram for background.

60 positions used at the moment and 4 for 2 doubley sprites... would need to make room for at least 4 more bitmaps, assuming 2 double sprites used for a single enemy.

They come one at a time at the beginning, as the player goes left (towards the tree) so I think it should be manageable.

 

Edited by cmadruga

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On 4/18/2020 at 11:56 AM, cmadruga said:

@skywaffle BTW I agree with you on need to reduce the use of gram for background.

60 positions used at the moment and 4 for 2 doubley sprites... would need to make room for at least 4 more bitmaps, assuming 2 double sprites used for a single enemy.

They come one at a time at the beginning, as the player goes left (towards the tree) so I think it should be manageable.

 

@cmadruga I have been looking at various ports of this game.   To be honest, I am only really familiar with the Lynx port;  It's the only version I have played, and played through.  The C64 version looks the least like the rest, but has some nice parallax effects that seem doable on the Intellivision with the small repeating mountain pattern, they also didn't bother trying to replicate any sort of gradient.

It's difficult to decide which way to go though.  As it is, the backgrounds can be optimized a bit cutting down the number of grams into the 50s without changing much visually. Reducing the mountains to silhouettes reduces the number of grams into the 40s, which leaves a lot available for enemies, and trees, and the well.  Some of those can be dynamically defined as well.

 

 

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I have reduced the grams for the background to 51, leaving some for the main character, and room for enemy bitmaps.   Some more probably should be cut down, but this makes things a bit more manageable.   

I've added some more animation, the ability to walk left and right, jump, and punch.  Ducking and jump kicking is not implemented.  Some basic enemy logic has been added as well.

I have also been experimenting with using zoomed sprites to keep things closer to the size of the original game, but also having smaller sprites.   I've attached both variations as ROMs and source for those interested in trying it out.

 

sotb5_s.bassotb5.romsotb5_s.romsotb5.bas

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Cool, I tried them both. I guess to be more faithful to the original the one with the larger character is closer, though if you go with the larger one

I feel like the character would need more detail, right now it just feels like a scaled up version of the smaller one, which is more forgiving of lack of detail.

I never played the original so I don't know, is there any vertical climbing/flying/movement or is the character pretty much just moving horizontally?

If it's just horizontal then the larger one is better I think?  Does it take up more resources to have a more detailed character?

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Each MOB (sprite) can be 8x8 or 8x16 pixels. Those can be expanded horizontally 1X, 2X and vertically 0.5X, 1X, 2X, 4X. In order to get more detail, instead of expanding the sprite you would use multiple sprites on top of eachother. The eyes and thong already is at least one layer on top of the grey body, meaning the player takes up at least 2 of the 8 available hardware sprites (without looking into the source code). If you use up another 1-2 sprites for the player, you only have 4 of them left for all enemies and other moving objects. Sometimes software sprites can be used too, though those consist of background objects and can't overlay other background regarding colours etc like the hardware sprites do.

 

The character can jump, climb, fall and crouch (plus shoot at the final boss!) but usually only 1/3 of the vertical space is used, up to 2/3 for the jumps, pretty much like in the preview video posted above.

 

Example of gameplay:

 

Edited by carlsson

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In most of all of the ports the character is centered horizontally.  On the overworld there is only horizontal scrolling, but in dungeons the scrolling is both vertical and horizontal.  Right now I am only using two sprites for the character.  I have thought of trying to use three for more detail on the zoomed sprites, but it probably wouldn't look much better

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I have this game for my Turbografx CD System.   The music and look of this game is so atmospheric.   The gameplay is ok but are not as great as the music and visuals.   
 

Still that is pretty impressive what has been done.   Better than what I imagined it would look like.    

B6658E33-5232-4607-83B7-C3B8206C767B.jpeg

4FFE4C2F-60C2-4B56-8B8D-DCE3ADB17609.jpeg

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53 minutes ago, Sinjinhawke said:

I have this game for my Turbografx CD System.   The music and look of this game is so atmospheric.   The gameplay is ok but are not as great as the music and visuals.   
 

Still that is pretty impressive what has been done.   Better than what I imagined it would look like.    

B6658E33-5232-4607-83B7-C3B8206C767B.jpeg

4FFE4C2F-60C2-4B56-8B8D-DCE3ADB17609.jpeg

The Turbografx version is an impressive game.  Even compared to many of the ports, they did a great job on that version.   I kind of feel the same way about the gameplay, it's lacking compared to the overall atmosphere from the art direction and music.

 

It's going to be difficult to capture any of that on the Intellivision, and I still don't know how far I want to take this, but it started as a curiosity after CMadruga brought the 2600 port to my attention LOL.

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Which game are you focusing on these days? I know Intellivania is pretty much done and you have about 4 or 5 others on the go?

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1 hour ago, Steve Jones said:

Which game are you focusing on these days? I know Intellivania is pretty much done and you have about 4 or 5 others on the go?

Intellivania is as good as done and just waiting on artwork for the box.   Super Mario Bros. seems like the most realistic one that could become finished afterwards, there is quite a bit done, although there is tons of polish needed, and music to create.   I haven't been investing as much time into programming lately, so progress has been a little slow on that.  The other game concepts I still toy with on occasion, but that 42kb size limit is an obstacle when you get into things like the Final Fantasy type game, or Megaman 2.  Super Mario Bros has worked nicely with the map compression and basic graphics; I have been able to cram in quite a bit while keeping the size relatively small.

 

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2 hours ago, skywaffle said:

The Turbografx version is an impressive game.  Even compared to many of the ports, they did a great job on that version.   I kind of feel the same way about the gameplay, it's lacking compared to the overall atmosphere from the art direction and music.

 

It's going to be difficult to capture any of that on the Intellivision, and I still don't know how far I want to take this, but it started as a curiosity after CMadruga brought the 2600 port to my attention LOL.

 

Hey, if anyone can pull a decent SOTB on the Inty, I know it's you!

However, don't feel obligated to keep working on it if you don't want to, or if you have other stuff on the pipeline.

I thought your first pass at it was great, the small sprite would be my preference too. Also because on the underground phases the proportions would work better.

 

SOTB is a relatively simple platform game which wowed many people back in the day (more so on the Amiga) due to visuals.

Of course you can't have the same stuff done on the Inty, but if you think about it, bosses like this one are static and pretty simple to pull off. 

 

image.png.a13340cf7726072aaf75eb206842e15e.png

 

This one would involve more cards, but then again if you simplify the background during boss battles it's doable.

I noticed that's what Kai Magazine does.

 

image.png.32674a9e812c7c5ab177812f81b43599.png

 

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I will have to try to mock up some of those cool large enemy designs.   I don't see that being too much of an issue though using a black background like most NES games.  Some things to consider with a port like this is whether to allow the character to walk away from the center of the screen or not, this would allow for nicer scene transitions if the character could walk off of one screen, to allow new grams to load in for the next area.   This would be great for going from the mountain scenery to the forest type area, as well as to transition to those big boss type enemies.

 

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33 minutes ago, Steve Jones said:

Cool, what is the 42kb max, is that on the standard intellivision cart? Isn’t Intellivania up over 85 now?

oh, sorry, I meant 42k-decles, which is basically where Intellivania is at now.

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Supposedly some of the true Intellivision hardware gurus have bankswitching schemes to get even larger programs.

 

SMB sounds cool (with different name, graphics and perhaps level designs to escape the N* wrath), but with Unlucky Pony about to be launched, those two would be quite similar titles released at the same time. Of course existing selection of games should not be limiting your creativity, just something to consider.

 

As for SOTB, I agree that the TurboGrafx-16 or even Amiga music would be hard to convey the same feeling on the AY PSG unless you can playback software samples. Even a more capable tracker like Arnaud's one would only be able to replicate a small part of that. I think one should compare to some of the 8-bit versions:

 

ZX Spectrum (AY chip, same as Intellivision)

 

Amstrad CPC (also AY AFAIK, though not the exact same music track)

 

Master System (SN76489 = Colecovision, less capable than Intellivision but SMS also has a FM chip)

 

C64 (so SID obviously, though it sounds like a different title tune?)

 

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Posted (edited)
On 4/23/2020 at 6:11 PM, skywaffle said:

I will have to try to mock up some of those cool large enemy designs.   I don't see that being too much of an issue though using a black background like most NES games.  Some things to consider with a port like this is whether to allow the character to walk away from the center of the screen or not, this would allow for nicer scene transitions if the character could walk off of one screen, to allow new grams to load in for the next area.   This would be great for going from the mountain scenery to the forest type area, as well as to transition to those big boss type enemies.

 

For boss battles, walking away is one possibility, but maybe another one could be to gradually redefine gram as you approach the boss. The background would get simpler and simpler as that transition would happen. You would probably have to force the player not to back away during that transition, to keep things simpler.

A much less preferred way would be to do what the SMS and C64 versions did: to cut the action and add a text screen before boss battles! But that's quite a buzz kill 🙂

 

About the transition from mountains to trees, yes, I think walking away would do it - if indeed there would be no way to fit the tree bitmaps on gram.

Looking at your code, I noticed right now you only seem to have positions 51-53 free. Only 3 bitmaps won't be enough to draw decent looking trees.

 

Also, I don't suppose you could put a zeppelin in the sky, could you? It's not that I'm obsessed with zeppelins or something...

 

 

Edited by cmadruga
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4 hours ago, carlsson said:

@cmadruga: Perhaps later you want to do a mockup of the Clue style game Murder on the Zinderneuf? Graphically it doesn't look very hot but perhaps it is fun and different.

Don’t distract him, he still has to finish Canyon Bomba, and not Goonies, and...

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