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Qix (2600) - Champ Games

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Just wow!

The demo already oozes more arcade feeling than the 5200 or Lynx versions.

Seems to be all there - cool presentation, perfect graphics (& effects), smooth gameplay + awesome, "electric" sound!

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1 hour ago, r_type2600 said:

Just wow!

The demo already oozes more arcade feeling than the 5200 or Lynx versions.

Seems to be all there - cool presentation, perfect graphics (& effects), smooth gameplay + awesome, "electric" sound!

"...Just wow..."
I agree!

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Love it how devs like SpiceWare and ChampGames have made the Harmony Architecture a commonplace 2nd official hardware expansion. Arcadia/Starpath SuperCharger having been the 1st.

 

 

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20 hours ago, r_type2600 said:

Just wow!

seconded (or thirded).

 

I just saw the video and this is NUTS.

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8 hours ago, Keatah said:

Love it how devs like SpiceWare and ChampGames have made the Harmony Architecture a commonplace 2nd official hardware expansion. Arcadia/Starpath SuperCharger having been the 1st.

 

Thanks!  I am a bit surprised at how slowly it's been adopted by others.  Hopefully once I resume work on the CDFJ tutorial over in the Harmony/Melody club we'll see more activity.

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1 hour ago, D Train said:

seconded (or thirded).

 

I just saw the video and this is NUTS.

And it plays really well, too!

 

Can't wait for people to try this out. :D 

 

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That looks amazing! I can't wait to play it. Qix was an arcade favorite of mine. I hope you do a big "how we did it" presentation at a conference some day and I also hope it's recorded and posted. :)

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ZeroPage Homebrew is playing the Exclusive World Premiere of Qix from Champ Games on tomorrow's (Tue Nov 2, 2021) stream LIVE on Twitch at 6PM PT | 9PM ET | 1AM GMT! Hope you can join us!


Games:

After Dark:

(WATCH AT 1080P60 FOR FULL QUALITY)

 

1321921306_20211102-QixPremiere.thumb.jpg.effea752259f44e658746cd5a2bb804a.jpg

 

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To all: 

 

The demo version of Qix (NTSC and PAL60) is now available for download on our Champ Games website:

 

https://champ.games/downloads

 

Since the game uses CDFJ bank switching, it will only work on Harmony carts (no PlusCart+ or UnoCart compatibility).  As always, we recommend you download the latest version of Stella if you plan on playing through an emulator.  The game can also be played using Stellarator.

 

If you are using Stella, there seems to be an issue with gamepad detection using 6.5.3; if you plan on using a single button joystick, you may need to specify a joystick for the left controller (-lc joystick) to override Stella's autodetection (which may detect a QuadTari or Gamepad).  The game does support 2 button Genesis gamepads (button B is draw fast, button C is draw slow).  Single button control is tap and release button while moving to draw fast, press and hold the button while moving to draw slow (release the button to move fast).

 

We estimate the game to be about 80% complete, with plans to add in additional play modes (2 player alternating, 2 player co-op) and a CHALLENGE mode as well, plus Savekey support.  A full release is not planned until late 2022 (after Lady Bug Arcade, Gorf Arcade and Turbo Arcade :P ).

 

Thanks to @Nathan Strum for game design and the cool graphics (especially the warp in/death animation) and Bob DeCrescenzo @PacManPlus for the awesome sounds! :music:   Also, special thanks to Steve Ramirez @sramirez2008 and @McCallister for game testing and feedback and @ZeroPage Homebrew James & Tanya for playing the game on the ZPH Twitch stream earlier this week.

 

As always, any feedback is welcome.  

 

Have fun!

John

 

 

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Played a quick game on my phone and it's cool with that 2600 flair that I expected. Definitely going to play some on my Harmony later.

 

Sent from my SM-G996U using Tapatalk

 

 

 

 

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What a strange and highly addictive game. After the first play I was hooked!

Excellent port! Everything plays really smooth. Amazing animation of the Qix. Getting chased by a few rotating lines never was this scary and never looked this good!

 

I do have one suggestion: please consider switching around fast and slow drawing for 1-button players. Maybe it's me, but I found activating slow and fast drawing to be counter-intuitive. Holding the button down to me feels like 'hitting the gas' and releasing the button feels like slowing down. Now every time one of these nasty Qixes comes near, I intuitively push the button, which only makes me slow down 🙂

 

Anyway, I can't wait to buy this on cartridge!

 

[btw: the PAL60 demo uses 263 scanlines, which causes my TV to show the game in black & white]

Edited by Dionoid
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This looks great and would be fun to have on the 2600. I loved playing this on the 5200.

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1 hour ago, Dionoid said:

What a strange and highly addictive game. After the first play I was hooked!

Glad you like it Dion!  The game has certainly grown on me too as I've discovered more strategy doing research (and Nathan's playing tips ;) ).

1 hour ago, Dionoid said:

Excellent port! Everything plays really smooth. Amazing animation of the Qix. Getting chased by a few rotating lines never was this scary and never looked this good!

Thanks!  I'm pretty happy with the Qix animation; the trick is to show the previous animation frame 1/4 of the time to get that ghosting effect. :cool:  

1 hour ago, Dionoid said:

I do have one suggestion: please consider switching around fast and slow drawing for 1-button players. Maybe it's me, but I found activating slow and fast drawing to be counter-intuitive. Holding the button down to me feels like 'hitting the gas' and releasing the button feels like slowing down. Now every time one of these nasty Qixes comes near, I intuitively push the button, which only makes me slow down 🙂

I do see your point, but the problem is that once you start drawing fast, the entire path will be blue (even if you switch to slow/orange) and you'll only get 1/2 the points.  The control scheme is set up like the Lynx (I believe), so you have to draw then *entire* path using slow (button pressed) to get credit for an orange/2x square.  Since you have to press the button to start drawing, this would automatically make every draw a 'fast draw'. 😕  I'm sure this was the logic for the Lynx version as well (default to slow for button pressed, release to go fast).  Hope that makes sense!   Of course, the true solution is to use a 2 button Genesis which gives you 1 button for fast draw (Button B) and 1 button for slow draw (button C) like the arcade. :idea: :P  

1 hour ago, Dionoid said:

Anyway, I can't wait to buy this on cartridge!

Thanks in advance for your support!  We're shooting for either PRGE 2022 or holiday season 2022 (one will be Turbo Arcade and the other will be Qix :)  ).

1 hour ago, Dionoid said:

[btw: the PAL60 demo uses 263 scanlines, which causes my TV to show the game in black & white]

Wow - good catch!  Looks like somewhere along the way (October 14th at 5:33pm EST to be precise ;) ), my scanline count got bumped to 263, probably when I was trouble shooting screen rolls and adjusting the vertical blank/ overscan timers.  😕  I fixed the issue and will post a new build soon (with a couple other suggestions from TJ @Thomas Jentzsch for improving the marker movement).

 

Thanks again,

John

 

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Got to playing it on the console, really nice work@johnnywc. Finally got the hang of it and was sad to see it loop after level 4 lol. I'll have to play the Lynx version to get some practice in. As far as the one button configuration, I feel the current setup with fast and slow movement works well and should be easy to pick up for most folks. I saw the explication and I was like, oh I get it! Once again, awesome work.

Sent from my SM-G996U using Tapatalk

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4 hours ago, johnnywc said:

...Since you have to press the button to start drawing, this would automatically make every draw a 'fast draw'. 😕  I'm sure this was the logic for the Lynx version as well (default to slow for button pressed, release to go fast).  Hope that makes sense!

 

If I'm not mistaken, how you've set it up is the same as how it's played on the Atari 8-bit computers.  So this is not without precedent.

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8 hours ago, Dionoid said:

Holding the button down to me feels like 'hitting the gas' and releasing the button feels like slowing down.

Just think of the button as a brake. :) 

 

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10 hours ago, johnnywc said:

Since you have to press the button to start drawing, this would automatically make every draw a 'fast draw'. 😕  I'm sure this was the logic for the Lynx version as well (default to slow for button pressed, release to go fast).  Hope that makes sense!

Ah, so pressing the button technically always starts 'slow draw' mode until the moment you release the button, after which it switches to 'fast draw', right? I think it's probably just something I will get used to after a few more games. @Thomas Jentzsch thinking of the button as a brake indeed helps me.

Having never played Qix before (and without having read the demo instructions), I initially expected some 'auto-draw' mode when moving the joystick into the direction of an empty space where there is no line (yet). But I realize that will totally break the original gameplay, so never mind. Moreover, being on par with the Lynx version makes sense to keep consistency across the ports.

 

The game has a great look & feel; like I'm trapped inside a futuristic game. The sound effects also add to that!

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9 hours ago, Dionoid said:

Ah, so pressing the button technically always starts 'slow draw' mode until the moment you release the button, after which it switches to 'fast draw', right? I think it's probably just something I will get used to after a few more games. @Thomas Jentzsch thinking of the button as a brake indeed helps me.

Yes exactly.  I did struggle with this a bit at first but 'tap' and draw has become second nature (to draw fast) and I'm sure it will for you too soon. :) 

9 hours ago, Dionoid said:

Having never played Qix before (and without having read the demo instructions), I initially expected some 'auto-draw' mode when moving the joystick into the direction of an empty space where there is no line (yet). But I realize that will totally break the original gameplay, so never mind. Moreover, being on par with the Lynx version makes sense to keep consistency across the ports.

I may be wrong, but I think the 800 version does this (auto-draw mode); perhaps it's something I can add for NOVICE players.  :ponder:  

9 hours ago, Dionoid said:

The game has a great look & feel; like I'm trapped inside a futuristic game. The sound effects also add to that!

Thanks!  Bob did a great job on the sounds and it really adds to the atmosphere and Nathan's graphics really take it up a notch too.   Glad you're enjoying it!

 

FYI I did update the demo version (v2) on the Champ Games download page after some suggestions from TJ (and to fix the 263 line colorless PAL issue):

  • Fixed the line count so it's now 262 on both NTSC and PAL60.  This was causing the game to run a bit slower than expected, and also would cause the PAL version to display only black & white.
  • Updated the movement code to be closer to the arcade and reduce the chance of getting your cursor 'stuck':  (thanks @Thomas Jentzsch for the suggestions)
    • When you attempt to move in a direction (for example, you're moving left and try to move down), if you can't move in the desired direction (because you are too close to a previous line), the game will continue to move your cursor in the current direction until it can move in your desired direction (in this example, the game will continue to move your cursor left until it can move down).
    • When moving the joystick in a diagonal direction, the game will move your cursor in the newest direction.  For example, if you are moving left and then move your joystick diagonally left and up, the game will move your marker up (first change of direction only so you don't continue to move diagonal :P ).

 

Have fun!

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3 hours ago, johnnywc said:

I may be wrong, but I think the 800 version does this (auto-draw mode); perhaps it's something I can add for NOVICE players.  :ponder:  

Yes, it seems the Atari 400/800 version indeed uses auto-drawing. The No Swear Gamer talks about that in this video. Would be great if this could be an option.

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