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FULS

Star Raiders and Tunnel Hunt

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This probably has been noted before, but I ran across Atari's arcade game "Tunnel Hunt" and it seems to resemble "Star Raiders" for the 8-bit.

Does anybody else thank so?

 

 

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A little but it's more Star Wars than Star Raider, that's good old Darths ship in both games..

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The arcade game looks almost the same including sound effects.   I wonder which game had the sound effects first.

 

I think it also might be the only Atari 6502 game that runs faster than the computers (2 MHz) - supposedly the Pokey is at 1.2 which would mean the AUDF values used would be different to get the nearly same sounds.

Edited by Rybags
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21 hours ago, FULS said:

This probably has been noted before, but I ran across Atari's arcade game "Tunnel Hunt" …..

It would be cool to have an A8 conversion of tunnel hunt. The A8 should be able to create the tunnel effect using the GTIA mode (like the launch tunnel on Rescue on Fractalus)…the rest is just some P/M graphics ;)

 

well the tunnel does move a lot….. would be hard on the A8 I bet. I’m convinced that this clever tunnel effect is not created with any (or much) CPU involvement, especially considering it’s from 1979 it looks like it’s done with hardware tricks, much like Midways Space Encounters.

Edited by Level42
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This game actually has a very famous developer (Owen Rubin) at Atari and it went through a long series of changes….

 

http://allincolorforaquarter.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-tortuous-history-of-tube.html

 

also, the game uses two POKEYs, so the sound effects of either Star Raiders or Tunnel Hunt may have been “borrowed” in either direction, especially since development started in 1979….

Edited by Level42
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I've never heard of or seen the game before now and I was very surprised that an Atari game was released by another company, but I read the article linked above and understand why now. I think the A8 could pull the game off pretty easily and in fact, while I might be mis-remembering, I think I've surely seen a similar tunnel graphic on the A8 that does move around like the arcade game and not just straight on like Rescue on Fractalus. But anyway, I'm sure some of the clever programmers in our community could pull it off and maybe even update the graphics a bit with a bit more detail and color on the P/M graphics.

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I had forgotten this even existed. They had one in the Aladdin's Castle near my cousins house I played a bit, back in the day. It was relegated to a dark corner on the bottom floor along with Sub Hunt.

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As the programmer for Tunnel Hunt/Tube Chase, I can explain the sounds. I sat with Doug Neubauer as he was trying to create the shot sounds for Star Raiders. He created those sound (with some feedback and tweaks) and I really liked them. Some time later, when I was doing Tunnel Hunt (then Tube Chase) I needed a shot sound, and remembered how much I liked the Star Raider's sound. But I did not have access to the code for the sound. So using a logic analyzer, I captured the sequence of digital values sent to the Pokey, then created my own sound routines to recreate the shot sound. I did similar for the collision sound as well.  There are some subtle changes as Tube Chase's speakers were different, but for the most part, yes, those are Star Raider's sound for those two effects. The other sounds are typical Pokey sounds and nothing special. 

As for the ship, I just drew those up on graph paper from the start. They are not copied from Star Raiders, and to be honest, I forgot they had similar look in some places. Originally, those graphics were just place holders, but the schedule got the better of me and they just remained and never updated. And yes, they are obviously "inspired" from Star Wars. 🙂

Happy to answer other questions. 

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Owen,

I love background stories like this.

Did you program any 8-bit games or were you mostly an arcade game programmer?

 

Thanks for your story,

Doug

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So good to get the proper back story...

 

I echo Dougs question, any other 8 bit games?

 

And of course, a Happy New year from us lot to you..

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I agree with the others. I'm so shocked when I see "I was the programmer for fill in the blank game" comments on here. It's so awesome to hear the details of game developing like this. It's like reading a post saying "I was the lead guitarist on Stairway to Heaven and I..." We certainly have some younger members on here, but I figure the biggest percentage of us are mid-40s to mid-60s. Most of you guys were probably 15-20 years older than most of us playing at home and you were rock gods to most of us, doing what many of us could only dream of.

 

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On 12/30/2021 at 1:26 PM, orubin said:

As the programmer for Tunnel Hunt/Tube Chase, I can explain the sounds. I sat with Doug Neubauer as he was trying to create the shot sounds for Star Raiders. He created those sound (with some feedback and tweaks) and I really liked them. Some time later, when I was doing Tunnel Hunt (then Tube Chase) I needed a shot sound, and remembered how much I liked the Star Raider's sound. But I did not have access to the code for the sound. So using a logic analyzer, I captured the sequence of digital values sent to the Pokey, then created my own sound routines to recreate the shot sound. I did similar for the collision sound as well.  There are some subtle changes as Tube Chase's speakers were different, but for the most part, yes, those are Star Raider's sound for those two effects. The other sounds are typical Pokey sounds and nothing special. 

As for the ship, I just drew those up on graph paper from the start. They are not copied from Star Raiders, and to be honest, I forgot they had similar look in some places. Originally, those graphics were just place holders, but the schedule got the better of me and they just remained and never updated. And yes, they are obviously "inspired" from Star Wars. 🙂

Happy to answer other questions. 

Thanks for the reply.  I'll echo what the others said.  It's so cool to get to "speak" to the original authors of these classic games.  Imagine back in the day, running into Michelangelo in a pub, talking about cool artwork on ceilings, and him responding with "Ah yeah, I painted that.  Any questions about the brushes I used?"

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I like it simply so I can say a thank you for their hard work and of course its so interesting how things were done back then, the use of a logic analyser just is so clever..

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