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Some ideas for games I'll never get around to programming myself, but which would be awfully fun to play, that someone ought to make, so I might as well put the ideas out there...

 

I have been dreaming up 4 and more player games since the 8-bit days. Not network games, but the heat of competition and the fun of playing with your friends right there next to you, crowded around the TV.

 

Back in the day I designed a 4-joystick adapter for the C64 on paper. I never got around to making it, but recently saw this QuadraStik Adapter for the 2600, which may or may not actually exist. UPDATE: Nathan from the site wrote back and said they are getting close!

 

Seeing that fired up the old dream, and inspired me to mock up some games I've always wanted to see. These aren't terribly original, just mashing up various elements from some old favorites.

 

Some of these might exceed the limitations of the 2600 (in that case, how about for a computer like the Atari 800 which has 4 joystick ports out of the box?) but with emulators and modern technology I have heard about 16k or 32k cartridges, Arduino powered circuits, etc., anything's possible.

 

Anyway here are some that might be fun to make... enjoy

 

quadzerk_01_pacman_2.png

 

quadzerk_02_combat_2.png

 

quadzerk_03_warlords_2.png

 

quadzerk_04_berzerk_2.png

Edited by madscijr
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Awesome Berzerk port ideas @madscijr

 

You may be able to create Berzerk games like this for the Atari 2600 using the new SuperCharger BASIC

 

Here is an unreleased port of Berzerk 2000 R2 that may inspire you or someone else to turn some of your ideas into Atari games:

Have fun! 

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3 hours ago, Mr SQL said:

Awesome Berzerk port ideas @madscijr

 

You may be able to create Berzerk games like this for the Atari 2600 using the new SuperCharger BASIC

 

Here is an unreleased port of Berzerk 2000 R2 that may inspire you or someone else to turn some of your ideas into Atari games:

...

Have fun! 

 

Thanks... As long as it makes it easy, that increases the chances I would find time to create something 

(not a lot of free time to devote to this stuff, and learning how to program assembly games for the Atari is high on difficulty & time drain and low on the priority list! Lol)

 

The Berzerk 2000 R2 video looks pretty decent, the motion and scrolling is smooth. The music is a little annoying but it's neat that it can handle simultaneous music.  It would be even better if they posted the source code! :-D

 

The other games are glitchy as hell and pretty bad, though. Whoever makes the SuperCharger BASIC needs to simply remake some well known Atari VCS titles (or demos of elements thereof) and post the source code, which will get people started. 

 

Edited by madscijr
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3 hours ago, madscijr said:

 

Thanks... As long as it makes it easy, that increases the chances I would find time to create something 

(not a lot of free time to devote to this stuff, and learning how to program assembly games for the Atari is high on difficulty & time drain and low on the priority list! Lol)

 

The Berzerk 2000 R2 video looks pretty decent, the motion and scrolling is smooth. The music is a little annoying but it's neat that it can handle simultaneous music.  It would be even better if they posted the source code! :-D

 

The other games are glitchy as hell and pretty bad, though. Whoever makes the SuperCharger BASIC needs to simply remake some well known Atari VCS titles (or demos of elements thereof) and post the source code, which will get people started. 

 

Glad you like Berzerk and great ideas about SuperCharger BASIC! 

 

I wrote the game and will share the source code soon, there have been some delays due to COVID-19 -

Here is another one you may like that was going to be released next month at the SillyVenture Atari Art Festival in Gdansk, but that's been pushed back until June for the same reason.

 

Here is an awesome SillyVenture 2020 Invitro video with an incredible chip-tune to inspire you and anyone inclined to enter an Atari 2600 demo or game in the art contest this year - there's an extra six months to prepare hope to see your creations there! :)  

     

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That will be very helpful to see your Berzerk 2000 R2 code. 

 

Here is a question - can the SuperCharger BASIC handle input from a 4-controller adapter, such as described here? 

These should work by simply "converting" the on/off signals from 4 or more joysticks to specific paddle and joystick values that just need to be interpreted correctly in the program.

 

 

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9 hours ago, madscijr said:

That will be very helpful to see your Berzerk 2000 R2 code. 

 

Here is a question - can the SuperCharger BASIC handle input from a 4-controller adapter, such as described here? 

These should work by simply "converting" the on/off signals from 4 or more joysticks to specific paddle and joystick values that just need to be interpreted correctly in the program.

 

 

madscijr I will send you the pre-release of the BASIC source to check out!

 

Yes it should be able to work with the QuadraStick Adapter -

 

Berzerk 2000 R2 is nearly all BASIC but there is one line with an Assembly routine, the QuadraStick Adapter would need to be tied in via a line like that:

 

You will see the line of Assembly somewhere in the BASIC listing looking a little bit like BASIC in structure because the ":" concatenator operator separates the Assembly routines statements like BASIC so more can fit on one of the line of code, similar to the way the BBC BASIC allowed Assembly statements to be included bitd.

 

It is also possible to use four controllers natively on the 2600 via paddle controllers, those plug in two to a port -

 

Paddle controllers could be used to have the four Berzerk characters rotate when you turn in one direction, and then move when turning in the other direction similar to the control scheme in COMBAT as part of the fun for the players to contend with. This scheme is a lot of fun for multiplayer imo, try COMBAT if you have not! :)  With a control scheme like that, you could add a 5th player at the console using the momentary switches to play! 

 

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On 11/11/2020 at 6:08 AM, madscijr said:

That will be very helpful to see your Berzerk 2000 R2 code. 

 

Here is a question - can the SuperCharger BASIC handle input from a 4-controller adapter, such as described here? 

These should work by simply "converting" the on/off signals from 4 or more joysticks to specific paddle and joystick values that just need to be interpreted correctly in the program.

 

 

The QuadraStik games are made by @gauauu and also discussed here:

 

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Quote

The QuadraStik games are made by @gauauu and also discussed here:

 

Thanks. Still waiting to hear when this adapter will be ready. 

 

I'd be more interested in knowing how a 4-joystick adapter could be implemented and building one myself. 

Is there any technical discussion of the workings and how it is read by the Atari? 

 

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1 hour ago, madscijr said:

 

 

Thanks. Still waiting to hear when this adapter will be ready. 

Hi!  I worked with Nathan (aka @gauauu) on the QuadTari (there was some misinformation about the name, it's no longer called the QuadraStik ;) ).  He has the final enclosure signed off and is currently working on the PCB, so it should ready for production soon! 🤞

1 hour ago, madscijr said:

I'd be more interested in knowing how a 4-joystick adapter could be implemented and building one myself. 

Is there any technical discussion of the workings and how it is read by the Atari? 

 

 

In short, we use multiplexers and the select line is D7 on VBLANK.  2 joysticks can be hooked up to each port.

 

If you have any specific questions, feel free to send me a PM!

 

  

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In short, we use multiplexers and the select line is D7 on VBLANK.


Thanks. From look at Joystick multiplexer help, I get the gyst of why multiplexing, although the details are way beyond me (I don't know electronics and assembly language makes my head spin). 

 

How is the QuadTari going to be made available - for sale off your site / ebay / etc. (how limited?), an open-source instructable type project, etc.? 

 

Is this kind of thing made any easier to build DIY using something like an Arduino or Pi? 

 

Thanks again

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Sorry, between busy life and some NES projects, I haven't been reading the AA forums as often the past few weeks, so I missed most of this.

 

On 11/17/2020 at 11:50 AM, madscijr said:

I'd be more interested in knowing how a 4-joystick adapter could be implemented and building one myself. 

Is there any technical discussion of the workings and how it is read by the Atari? 

The tech details are in that long thread, but like johnnywc said, it's analog multiplexors and D7, fairly simple.

 

On 11/17/2020 at 2:16 PM, madscijr said:

How is the QuadTari going to be made available - for sale off your site / ebay / etc. (how limited?), an open-source instructable type project, etc.? 

Still working out the details, but we'll probably sell them on some combination of either/both my website (bitethechili.com) and the AA store. We'll buy enough parts that everyone who wants one should be able to get one. I don't have plans to make the PCB layouts open source at the moment, but I've been thinking about selling a cheaper "kit" version with the unassembled PCBs and components if people would enjoy soldering and building it themselves.

 

On 11/17/2020 at 2:16 PM, madscijr said:

Is this kind of thing made any easier to build DIY using something like an Arduino or Pi? 

You could probably build one relatively easily with one of those. I considered it, but the biggest costs for a nice production run are the cables, connectors, and enclosures. For a one-off that you make for yourself, it might be easier to use an Arduino (assuming it's fast enough, which I'd guess it is), but it's just not cost effective for a reasonable sized run.

 

On 11/17/2020 at 11:50 AM, madscijr said:

Thanks. Still waiting to hear when this adapter will be ready

Soon.  Most of the parts are in my basement. Waiting on the enclosures, and finalizing details like packaging, setting up the web store, documentation, etc.

Edited by gauauu
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