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Little EXO Update.

 

Two boss fights are now complete and are being tested (World 1 and World3). That process has already generated some tweaks and improvements.

 

World 5 is also taking shape and then.. well, we're nearly done!

 

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I've put together a new video for folks who don't have a Dragonfly to check out the POKEY tunes (as they are a bit hit and miss under emulation).

 

Enjoy :)

 

 

 

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On 7/25/2020 at 8:17 PM, sramirez2008 said:

 

Btw, I'm getting more comfortable playing the game with my Edladdin Super Twin controller. Now I can go to sleep.

 

@sramirez2008

Are you still using that controller?

 

What controller are other people using? Genesis controller with adapter doesn't suit my thumbs in this game. I have been using a custom controller made by Bratwurst, but I think the square restrictor plate is screwing me up on world 3 (necropolis). I might see if I can find an octagonal or circular restrictor plate if I have one. That world is hard. Absolutely unforgiving, everything must be spot on precise or your dead, and hence my problem with my current controller. Does anyone have a controller they like that works well for them on world 3?

 

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7 minutes ago, john_q_atari said:

@sramirez2008

Are you still using that controller?

 

What controller are other people using? Genesis controller with adapter doesn't suit my thumbs in this game. I have been using a custom controller made by Bratwurst, but I think the square restrictor plate is screwing me up on world 3 (necropolis). I might see if I can find an octagonal or circular restrictor plate if I have one. That world is hard. Absolutely unforgiving, everything must be spot on precise or your dead, and hence my problem with my current controller. Does anyone have a controller they like that works well for them on world 3?

 

I've switched to the 7800 Gamepad from retrsogameboyz.com.  I never cared much for gamepads, but this is an excellent controller.  I like it so much that I purchased another one.  I recommend this controller.

7800 Gamepad-Woodgrain.jpg

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10 minutes ago, sramirez2008 said:

I've switched to the 7800 Gamepad from retrsogameboyz.com.  I never cared much for gamepads, but this is an excellent controller.  I like it so much that I purchased another one.  I recommend this controller.

7800 Gamepad-Woodgrain.jpg

 

Thanks for the recommendation. Alas it shows as out of stock. I added myself to the notification list so maybe someday...

 

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5 minutes ago, john_q_atari said:

 

Thanks for the recommendation. Alas it shows as out of stock. I added myself to the notification list so maybe someday...

 

Looks like the Rainbow edition is available. 

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40 minutes ago, sramirez2008 said:

I've switched to the 7800 Gamepad from retrsogameboyz.com.  I never cared much for gamepads, but this is an excellent controller.  I like it so much that I purchased another one.  I recommend this controller.

7800 Gamepad-Woodgrain.jpg

I use this controller as my secondary controller as the @Bratwurst controller has taken over at the primary controller I'm using now for 7800/2600 gaming.

 

Even with E.X.O. although I know I would do better in that game with the precision of the gamepad controller.

 

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Game looks amazing.

The music is great except most of the higher pitched voices have lots of squealing in them that distract from the game. Could be a hardware(emulation) thing again and maybe that is a W.I.P.  

Same issue was worked out of Millie and Mollie. 

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6 minutes ago, Jinks said:

Game looks amazing.

The music is great except most of the higher pitched voices have lots of squealing in them that distract from the game. Could be a hardware(emulation) thing again and maybe that is a W.I.P.  

Same issue was worked out of Millie and Mollie. 

Thanks for the feedback  :) 

 

If you are playing on emulation (Bup, A7800, JS7800 etc), then I'm 99.9% sure it's emulation that's causing the issue with the music and squealing / notes being off. 

 

There is a video here of the last demo that was captured from MiSTer, this is how the music sounds on real hardware / MiSTer. 

 

 If you get a minute check that out, hopefully it should sound different compared to the emulation experience :) 

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Listened to it again. The first level music on the second part of the instrumental may have one note off key. Title, launch and intro all passes.  It is kinda a me issue as my ears hate high pitches. 

1:00-1:09 high pitched, 2:36 note sounds a bit off. Maybe supposed to be that way like artistic or something.  As the end notes kinda have a two pitch change at different times. I think it is the echo effect happening. 

Edited by Jinks
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Also: Title and Area 3 music have been found to have issues on Dragonfly + PokeyMax.   Certain notes misfire,  and it's due to how PokeyMax handles 1.79mhz two tone mode.   A workaround has been found and will be implemented soon.

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Workaround implemented! (thanks again Bobby for your hard work and wonderful music).

 

Boss fights 1, 2 and 3 are now done and 4 is probably about 50% of the way there too. 

 

 

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Been a few weeks since I updated on EXO. ( I got a bit sidetracked and I spent a week making a proof of concept that I said to myself I wouldn't make).

 

Anyway, World 5 is nearly completed, all the bosses are now in and have been polished a bit. Atari Vox is getting a bit of an extra workout for those that have one.

 

 

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I ended up taking a couple of weeks away from this project to work on something else for a bit. @ZeroPage Homebrew will be doing a bit of a reveal on that new project on next Friday's show. 

 

Today I spent some time cleaning up the AV speech a bit more for the bosses and tidying up World 5. That build will be with the testers sometime this week and then it's done all but one cutscene and a few little tweaks that I want to make, here and there. Mostly palette related stuff (the old LCD vs CRT issues as EXO uses quite a wide palette at times).

 

 

 

 

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World 5 testing is underway, bit later than expected, but as an added bonus, I managed to sneak in a 5th and final "mini-boss". Provided nothing major breaks or falls off, we're in a good spot.

 

So what's left to do? honestly, not much. I would quietly suggest EXO is 99% done at this point.

 

Some polish here and there.

 

A final demo before Christmas to give folks a chance to try out a couple of full worlds like before and a boss or two as I don't think bosses were included in the previous demos.

 

Light at the end of the tunnel :D 

 

 

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21 hours ago, Karl G said:

Congrats in advance. It has certainly been quite an epic undertaking.  🙂 

Indeed Karl, thanks! :) 

 

With hindsight, I may have approached things a *little* differently and not gone for such a big project. That said, I'm really happy with EXO and I'm looking forward to sharing details of the new release candidate demo with everyone.

 

16 hours ago, mksmith said:

Awesome news Lewis! Not long to go know mate!!

Cheers Matt ! :) Yep, I'll be a little sad to call it done, but it will also be nice to able to put more time into other projects :) 

 

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E.X.O. is complete.  (woohoo)

 

Release Candidate Demo A


The demo is limited to the first two worlds and the first two bosses and saving functionality is disabled.

 

Other than that you have the full experience, nothing is cut from the levels or bosses

 

EXO is a 512KB binary with 16KB RAM + POKEY - It is NTSC and PAL compatible out of the box and works on Dragonfly with POKEY/POKEYMAX on real hardware, and on MiSTer PAL and NTSC Cores.

 

It does not work on Concerto currently due to the ROM size.

 

Emulation : Testing and working fine under BUP, A7800, JS7800 & Argon - Please note the Music comments below.


The release candidate has had a few tweaks and changes since the demo from July and I'm very pleased to be able to provide a demo for folks to test. The only real changes I plan to make from here are fixing any bugs that pop up between now and release and removing the temporary demo title page etc. We might also have to tweak the music depending on how HOKEY testing goes.

Updates for Release Candidate A - December 2021
⦁    Significant amount of balance tweaks made across the whole game.
⦁    Palette tweaks to avoid colours that do not play well on LCD displays.
⦁    Extra POKEY tunes (now 15 up from 13)
⦁    World 5 is complete and implemented.
⦁    5 boss fights now implemented.
⦁    AtariVox speech on boss fights.

 

A note on POKEY music :

Please note that quite a few of EXO's tunes do not sound right under emulation. This is just the maturity of POKEY emulation in the currently available emulators. If the music sounds odd - it's the emulation.


Elite Xeno Operations - Full feature list :


⦁    5 full worlds for the player to explore and defeat, each with unique a graphical theme and environment, from industrial factories to ruined ancient temples.
⦁    5 end of level bosses to defeat.
⦁    4 hidden Key Stones to unlock.
⦁    15 Pokey Tunes for your audio enjoyment.
⦁    More than 100 screens in total.
⦁    HSC, AtariVox and Savekey support for saving progress and unlocks (3 save slots).
⦁    AtariVox speech supported for boss fights.
⦁    Cinematic Viewer so that you can revisit past glories.
⦁    Comprehensive "how to play" tutorial in game.
⦁    Unlockable Easter Eggs such as the POKEY music player.
⦁    Fully PAL compatible and adjusted.
⦁    32kb of music and sound effects, over 80kb of graphics.

 

Enjoy :) 

 

EXO_Release_Cand_Demo_A.a78

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Just a few comments for folks trying the demo for the first time :

 

  • Don't rush. If you rush, the game will try very hard to kill you.
  • Your bombs can be useful to blow up enemy rockets in awkward places.
  • Don't rush, some screens are easier than they look.
  • Use a good controller.
  • Switches are sometimes hidden by enemies, switches open up secret areas.
  • Take your time, think the screen through and don't rush!
  • Explore. Each world is different, learn a route through.
  • The bosses will smack talk you if you have AtariVox
  • Oh and don't RUSH!

 

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, Muddyfunster said:
  • Don't rush. If you rush, the game will try very hard to kill you.

...

  • Oh and don't RUSH!

^^^THIS^^^

 

Plenty of action, but just as much strategy.  There is no timer limit and there are multiple checkpoints per world. 

Take the time needed to fully enjoy the worlds in this masterpiece.

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