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legeek

Hacking games to use different controllers?

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Howdy,

How hard would it be to hack atari games to use different controllers?

 

Specifically paddle controllers for Off the Wall, and driving controllers for Sprintmaster. Both of these games would benefit greatly from having the 'proper' controller instead of the joystick.

 

My hat's off to anyone up to the challenge!

 

legeek

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How about deleteing title screens or number of options--anything to get those paddle controllers!

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quote:

Originally posted by Scott Stilphen:

Take out the Easter egg


Nice idea, if only it would use a byte.

Any other games that I should try to hack for driving controllers?

 

quote:

Originally posted by dwh

How about deleteing title screens or number of options--anything to get those paddle controllers!

Won't help, it's not the missing rom space, it's the cycle counting. Paddle games have less free cycles for the kernel display and tend to have simplier graphics. Hacking an existing kernel, where usually (nearly) all cycles are used, is almost impossible without a major redesign. Sorry!

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Driving controllers - any driving game (such as Pole Position), and games that allow 360 degree rotation - Omega Race would be cool with that (and more like the arcade set-up), Asteroids (the coin-op Blasteroids used a rotary controller), Tempest, etc.

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Does Sprintmaster use Superchip RAM? If it doesn't, the hack could be coded to use it--then playable on emulators or Cuttle Cart.

 

quote:

Originally posted by Thomas Jentzsch:

Originally posted by legeek:

[qb]Howdy,

Specifically paddle controllers for Off the Wall, and driving controllers for Sprintmaster.

Hacking for paddle control is nearly impossible, because you have to constantly poll a register inside the normally very tight kernel display code.

 

I've tried hacking Sprintmaster too, but you need one byte of RAM to remember the previous state of the driving controller. Unfortunately I coundn't find any.    [/QB]

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quote:

Originally posted by legeek:

Howdy,

Specifically paddle controllers for Off the Wall, and driving controllers for Sprintmaster.

Hacking for paddle control is nearly impossible, because you have to constantly poll a register inside the normally very tight kernel display code.

 

I've tried hacking Sprintmaster too, but you need one byte of RAM to remember the previous state of the driving controller. Unfortunately I coundn't find any.

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He's got a point, I can't see people using the games outside of an emu or a cuttle cart, or something. Those give plenty more RAM to work with.

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quote:

Originally posted by Smart Patrol:

Sprintmaster is a Superchip game.

Exactly, and it's using all that extra RAM for buffering some kernel display variables.

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quote:

Originally posted by Scott Stilphen:

Driving controllers - any driving game (such as Pole Position), and games that allow 360 degree rotation - Omega Race would be cool with that (and more like the arcade set-up), Asteroids (the coin-op Blasteroids used a rotary controller), Tempest, etc.

I don't think pseudo 3d games like Pole Position or Enduro will be better playable with driving controllers, but I'll have a look at Asteroids and Omega Race.

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Do you mean Driving Controller (only for Indy 500) or Paddle Controller?

 

First you speak about the Paddles Controller and now over Driving Controller.

 

But I think you mean Paddles. Or I am wrong?

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quote:

Originally posted by MattyXB:

Do you mean Driving Controller (only for Indy 500) or Paddle Controller?

 

First you speak about the Paddles Controller and now over Driving Controller.

 

But I think you mean Paddles. Or I am wrong?

No, I mean driving controllers, because as I said, adding paddle controllers is almost impossible.

 

BTW: Scott, for e.g Asteroids, how would you thrust and use the extras (shields erc.) with driving controllers???

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The driving controllers only use the UP and DOWN directions, so you could a 'Y' connector, and plug in a driving controller and a Track & Field controller (this would also someone to make a custom controller), or you could use both joystick ports.

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quote:

Originally posted by Thomas Jentzsch:

Hacking for paddle control is nearly impossible, because you have to constantly poll a register inside the normally very tight kernel display code.

 

I've tried hacking Sprintmaster too, but you need one byte of RAM to remember the previous state of the driving controller. Unfortunately I coundn't find any.

 

Bummer Thomas!

I'm impressed that you've already tinkered with the idea though...

 

 

Cheers,

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Update: I finally found the needed RAM inside Sprintmaster and an early version of the hack is already working.

Thanks to Scott Stilphen for testing!

 

The final result will be posted to AtariAge.

 

I'm afraid, Albert and Alex will have to add another category: Controller Conversions.

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