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Zombie Crisis (WIP)

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I started learning batari Basic in June and have been playing around with it on my free time when available. Here is my first Atari 2600 work in progress. It's an action/adventure game based around trying to escape a zombie outbreak. The game is currently a 32k ROM but at least half is unused as I went for a larger ROM file so I could include more screens later. The current game only includes the first section of the game.

 

The goal of each area is to get the gas can to fuel the car enough to keep going to the next location.

 

The very rough "story" I have for this game:

You finally took the long road trip up to Cranberry Lake, NY to pay your respects to 
your parents who passed years prior in an accident. You haven't visited their graves 
in many years and the guilt of never having the time to go finally caught up to you. 
While walking to the graveyard, you meet up with an old man who was your parent's 
friend and neighbor. He is happy to see you and lets you know he's going fishing at 
the lake just north of the cemetery and that you should  come seem him after your 
done with your folks to catch up.


While at the grave site you notice that the ground at another grave appears to 
break apart as a hand reaches through the soil....

 

 

Controls:

  • Joystick moves
  • Button fires (once you find a gun)
  • Color/BW switch pauses game
  • Left Difficulty in A Position: Lose all items and progress on game over.
  • Left Difficulty in B Position: Items and progress is saved on game over. (Until a reset)
  • Right Difficulty in A Position: Full Speed Monsters and Full Damage (v02)
  • Right Difficulty in B Position: Half Speed Monsters and Half Damage (v02)

 

 

On title screen, button starts the game. On "car" screen, button drives off.

 

 

Tips:

  • Colored barriers require keys to unlock them.
  • Treat the gun as a machine gun. Hold the button down when firing otherwise some enemies will take forever.
  • Boss of area one is vulnerable on the right side.
  • The forest is a maze and not all screens will make sense. Don't be surprised if you're turned around there.
  • "Thin" ghosts are only easily hit from the the left or right side.

 

Screen shots:

WVkmqCU.png

 

sDj4l4Z.png

 

0cUUwdr.png

 

ROM attached to post. Please let me know any issues you may have. I've played it on my 4 switch and 6 switch using the harmony cart and haven't noticed any flickering or issues but if you see anything, please let me know.

 

Thanks! :)

 

Update 2020-09-13: Added PAL60 version of v0.2

 

zombie_crisis_v01.bin

zombie_crisis_v02.bin

zombie_crisis_v02_PAL60.bin

Edited by slacker
Adding Updated v02
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Great start! It plays well, but is definitely challenging. I wasn't able to find the gun on my attempts, so I wasn't able to progress very far, though.

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2 hours ago, Karl G said:

Great start! It plays well, but is definitely challenging. I wasn't able to find the gun on my attempts, so I wasn't able to progress very far, though.

Thanks! Good to know about the difficulty. It's hard for me to tell because at this point I've run through the game 1000 times. :)

 

To get the gun:

Spoiler

It's in the house on the north west corner that's locked by the green key. To get to the beach where the green key is, head north two screens from the graveyard and then east two screens. This beach path will twist it's way to the key. Once you have the key you need to backtrack to the house with the green lock to get the gun.

 

1 hour ago, KevKelley said:

Really cool.

Thanks!

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Updated first post in this thread with version 0.2 download. This version uses the right difficulty switches to set monster difficulty. In the A position they will be full speed and full damage. If it's in the B difficulty they will do half damage and move at half speed.

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We'll be checking out Zombie Crisis on tomorrow's (Fri Sep 04) ZeroPage Homebrew stream LIVE on Twitch at 12PM PT | 3PM ET | 7PM GMT! Hope everyone can watch!

 

Games:

 

(SET VIDEO TO 1080P60 FOR FULL QUALITY)

 

Edited by ZeroPage Homebrew
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Awesome! I feel honored getting a spot on the show! :) Glad you liked the game so far. I'm unfortunately not going to be able to catch the stream live tomorrow but I'll definitely check it out when it's posted on YouTube. Really interested on hearing your input.

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15 hours ago, chewy said:

i cant find the gun :(

Watch Darcy's play in the ZPH video above.  He finds the gun after a couple of minutes.

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Finally caught the ZPH stream on YouTube. Thanks again for playing! :)

 

This was also answered in the stream but I figured I would post here as well:

  • Gun can be used to kill any enemy. Each enemy has it's own health and speed stat. (Speed stat is the probability of moving per frame). Some enemies have much higher health than others. The enemies with a lot more health are reserved for ones that walk a predetermined path.
  • Enemies that have detail are zombies (player1). Zombies besides the ones that walk predetermined paths can't walk through walls unless they really wiggle their way through (Had to use a simpler version of the collision detection than the player to save on cycles).
  • Enemies that are just the solid blocks that float through walls are ghosts (missile1)
  • Anything that's picked up or killed adds to your score (besides health)
    • Kill a zombie: 50
    • Kill a ghost: 100
    • Kill boss: 2500
    • Boss Projectiles: 5 (15 for last one)
    • Pick up weapon: 1000
    • House (green) key: 500
    • Graveyard (orange) key: 1500
    • Gas can: 500

 

Bugs/To-Do:

  • Update entrance to green key area to make it more obvious that you can walk off the screen that way.
  • Extra lives or full health if lives full at x amount of score interval.
  • Fix bug where NUSIZ1 gets reset when player is marked dead. Currently sprite scaling/duplication reverts to 1/normal when player dies. This can be seen at the end of ZPH's stream of the game when they died by walking into the big zombie blocking the forest entrance.
  • Some screen layout updates where player can get a little stuck when moving to next screen. (Exiting the green key screen to the right on the lower half of the exit is an example of this)
  • Make the difference between doors (at least green door) and ghosts more evident. On ZPH stream they point out that the ghost and the door are exactly the same. Didn't even think of that! Definitely needs to be fixed.
  • Start working on puzzle/map for area 2.

 

I'm open to suggestions as well!

Edited by slacker
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24 minutes ago, slacker said:

 

I'm open to suggestions as well!

A PAL60 colors version?

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I'm not too familiar with how PAL60 works. From what I see on Random Terrain's website, I can use a list of consts for the colors to swap them out between NTSC and PAL60 (https://www.randomterrain.com/atari-2600-memories-batari-basic-commands.html#colors ). Is it just a palette swap but keeping the same NTSC refresh rate?

 

I gave it a go on the title screen and in Stella the background color looks wrong (but I guess red still works. Text looks correct). Do the colors end up looking correct when viewed on a PAL TV?

 

Attached are a screenshot of the two versions. Green background is regular NTSC and red background is using PAL60 colors.

 

If this seems right to you, I'll go ahead and add a PAL60 version of the v0.2 demo.

zc_title_ntsc.png

vz_titlescreen_pal60.png

Edited by slacker
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On 9/9/2020 at 6:14 PM, slacker said:

I'm not too familiar with how PAL60 works. From what I see on Random Terrain's website, I can use a list of consts for the colors to swap them out between NTSC and PAL60 (https://www.randomterrain.com/atari-2600-memories-batari-basic-commands.html#colors ). Is it just a palette swap but keeping the same NTSC refresh rate?

 

I gave it a go on the title screen and in Stella the background color looks wrong (but I guess red still works. Text looks correct). Do the colors end up looking correct when viewed on a PAL TV?

 

Attached are a screenshot of the two versions. Green background is regular NTSC and red background is using PAL60 colors.

 

If this seems right to you, I'll go ahead and add a PAL60 version of the v0.2 demo.

zc_title_ntsc.png

vz_titlescreen_pal60.png

You can use control + f key on stella to change the TV format to PAL

 

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11 hours ago, Al_Nafuur said:

You can use control + f key on stella to change the TV format to PAL

 

Oh cool! It looks like it works. Thanks! I'll spin up a version of the demo either later today or tomorrow and post it to the thread. 

zc_title_pal60_paltv.png

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