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johnnywc

Qix (2600) - Champ Games

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Now I'm looking forward to:

 

  1. Lunar Lander
  2. Zookeeper
  3. Champ Sports Baseball
  4. Robotron 2084
  5. Qix

 

I feel like I'm forgetting one more.  Sinistar 2600?

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Posted (edited)
On 7/20/2020 at 2:57 PM, AtariLeaf said:

That's fantastic news. So excited about that hockey game. I hope the Leafs are in it 😁

Although you haven't won a Cup since 1967, I would think so, but, if you wait a year, maybe you can add our newly-named Seattle Kraken onto the list, .......and of course my LA Kings, in which I have been a loyal fan of since 1975 (9 years old at that time, native Californian, born in Panorama City in 1966), and had season tickets to (at The Fabulous Forum) from 1977-87, before I moved to Port Townsend, WA in 1987.

 

#ReleaseTheKraken

Edited by BIGHMW
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One special request for @johnnywc, that you please come up with ROM versions that will work with Flashback 9 (Stella Emulator HDMI, in other words, non-ARM versions), so far I can't play either Wizard Of Wor Arcade, Galagon, Gorf Arcade, or Robotron for my FB9, and even though I DO own a 2600 adapter for my 5200 I still don't have the Harmony Encore yet.

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You can't simply make a non-ARM version of an ARM game.  It is an integral part of the game, and cannot be removed.  Doing so will essentially be a different game.  The real solution is for these hardware companies to release a console with the latest version of Stella, and not be depending on a release done in 2012.

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3 hours ago, stephena said:

You can't simply make a non-ARM version of an ARM game.  It is an integral part of the game, and cannot be removed.  Doing so will essentially be a different game.  The real solution is for these hardware companies to release a console with the latest version of Stella, and not be depending on a release done in 2012.

But AtGames is not gonna make that happen, the reason why I got the FB9 was because of its SD card slot and HDMI compatibility, but I didn't know that in the future there were a few new homebrews won't work with it. That and AtGames refuses to develop a patch (or a Flashback unit) that would fix the problem and allow it to play ARM chip-optimized games.

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The R77 might work better for you then.

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2 hours ago, Thomas Jentzsch said:

The R77 might work better for you then.

A minor thing I have with it is that the R77 will only allow me to have a few titles on the card at any given time and I have almost 800 games on my SD card I currently use with the FB9 and used to use on the Harmony Encore.

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You have to update the R77 to the community edition. Then you have the latest Stella in full glory.

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55 minutes ago, Thomas Jentzsch said:

You have to update the R77 to the community edition. Then you have the latest Stella in full glory.

And it solves the "few titles at a time" issue too.

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On 7/20/2020 at 3:53 PM, AtariBrian said:

I do believe someone is making Qix for the 7800. I would never say I don't want to see a game being made but do you have other games that you have been thinking about other than Qix? Sure I would like to see Qix for the 2600 but with a 5200 Qix and possibly a 7800 Qix ... 

 

Well I think Qix would be another proverbial feather in the VCS'es cap.

 

ARM-based games bring "stuff we dreamed about as a kid" to a genuinely vintage platform. A platform that's in a class all by itself. Simplicity, charm, and more..are all things that describe the VCS.

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On 7/21/2020 at 8:14 PM, guppy said:

Now I'm looking forward to:

  1. Lunar Lander
  2. Zookeeper
  3. Champ Sports Baseball
  4. Robotron 2084
  5. Qix

I feel like I'm forgetting one more.  Sinistar 2600?

 

Mmm, yes, Lunar Lander. I would so love to see that - along with some game variations, a combat version, space hazards, goals, and even a make-your-own-terrain option. And of course the basic arcade version.

 

Programmatically I think Lunar Lander would be simple to make, there are several versions already. But not a proper vector-style implementation.

 

I would also like to see a non-panty version of Tempest.

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1 hour ago, Keatah said:

I would also like to see a non-panty version of Tempest.

I would also, although I DO have 4 different ROMs of Tempest (including the original "blue Speedo" version) and happen to like the "V" patterned one, there are also a circular variation (in a weird dual circle), and also a half-pipe version as well, but those have messed up copyright info ("(c) 1983 ATARI") on those two, the V has it perfect while the "panty" (as you call it) version has none.

 

But on all 4 of them you remain stuck on one pattern for the rest of the game, plus there are only flippers, and tankers (after level 3) to deal with and then the fuseballs and pulsars make their appearances later on, no spikers, no spikes to avoid, pretty much repetitive throughout.

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On 7/21/2020 at 3:08 AM, bizarrostormy said:

I have been working on TIA sound. It’s important to me that it have good sound with a stock system and TIA is relatively well suited to Qix sounds. I do also want a way to do better sound.

Thats excellent to hear, a big part of the Qix vibe are the sounds! Other than MAME I've never heard a good representation of the ominous sounds heard in Qix.

On 7/21/2020 at 3:08 AM, bizarrostormy said:

Fun fact 1: arcade Qix does not do speech synthesis but uses a TMS5200 speech synthesis chip for its sound.

Actually, it doesn't! The board indeed has the socket for the TMS5200, but it was never populated. The code in Qix never tries to access the chip neither. Oddly enough, the manual states that the sounds are shaped through that chip, so it seems that originally there would have been some kind of filtering through it.

On 7/21/2020 at 3:08 AM, bizarrostormy said:

Fun fact 2: the Speakjet chip provides direct control of its synthesizer.

I'm not sure what you mean by this? There is no Speakjet chip in Qix neither??

On 7/21/2020 at 3:08 AM, bizarrostormy said:

 

So — no promises because I haven’t really dug deeply into either of the above facts — I am hoping to eventually use AtariVox as a way to get better sound. Hopefully that would work for both 7800 and 2600.

I truly hope you manage to achieve something close, and thank you for trying to make this happen! 

On 7/21/2020 at 3:08 AM, bizarrostormy said:

 

 

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On 7/21/2020 at 2:25 AM, johnnywc said:

I would also love to discuss the game mechanics as I'm not that familiar with Qix (or at least how to be good at it :lol:), like what determines the path the Sparks follow, setting the sparks trap, flood fill routines, etc.  I'll send you a PM... I look forward to chatting! :D 

I can offer some info as a gamer on that score, being a huge fan of the game and owning a cab. 😁 I've also researched the game online for years, looking for any info I didn't already know, quite obsessive of me but it just intrigues me so much! I have manuals, the flyer, loads of spare parts. 🤓 Such a strange, abstract game with a fantastic curious name, and awesome sounds!🙃

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2 hours ago, Jase said:

Actually, it doesn't! The board indeed has the socket for the TMS5200, but it was never populated. The code in Qix never tries to access the chip neither. Oddly enough, the manual states that the sounds are shaped through that chip, so it seems that originally there would have been some kind of filtering through it.

I'm not sure what you mean by this? There is no Speakjet chip in Qix neither??

 

Interesting! I don’t have the actual hardware but have looked at the manual. It shows the TMS5200 and a bunch of connected wiring — and no other sound chip. Looking again, I do not see any connection from the TMS5200 to a speaker. If I am reading this right, each channel’s amplifier’s input comes from a 68A21 through a decoder. Is that right? How does that work? Aside from the Taito games with the same board, do any other games do that?

 

No Speakjet in Qix, but I believe its capabilities are in the same ballpark as the TMS5200. Since I was mistaken about the latter, it’s not so relevant, but I still intend to investigate what it can do.

Edited by bizarrostormy

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18 hours ago, bizarrostormy said:

 

Interesting! I don’t have the actual hardware but have looked at the manual. It shows the TMS5200 and a bunch of connected wiring — and no other sound chip. Looking again, I do not see any connection from the TMS5200 to a speaker. If I am reading this right, each channel’s amplifier’s input comes from a 68A21 through a decoder. Is that right? How does that work? Aside from the Taito games with the same board, do any other games do that?

 

No Speakjet in Qix, but I believe its capabilities are in the same ballpark as the TMS5200. Since I was mistaken about the latter, it’s not so relevant, but I still intend to investigate what it can do.

I got it wrong - I was writing from memory. Having checked out the manual, it appears there was to be speech in Qix originally (that would have been amazing!) but the idea seems to have been ditched for some reason. There was a potentiometer to be mounted on the board for controlling the volume of the generated speech, which would be sent through both amps.

From what I can tell, the sound samples are selected from EPROM u27 and processed through DAC's. The whining background noise I suspect is from an oscillator somewhere but I can't see that!

 

Screen Shot 2020-08-02 at 15.54.57.png

Screen Shot 2020-08-02 at 15.55.31.png

Edited by Jase
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5 minutes ago, Jase said:

...it appears there was to be speech in Qix originally (that would have been amazing!) but the idea seems to have been ditched for some reason.

Maybe John wants to correct this now. :) 

 

But what would it say?

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