Skip to main content

Playfield editor and Green Toady

Today was an Atari Anguna day.

First, I was working on some new room layouts, and got a little frustrated with the room editor I had been using (Kirk Israel has an incredible 2600 Sprite Editor on his website but his playfield editor leaves a bit to be desired. (mainly, that I couldn't drag to paint, instead had to click each cell, also that I couldn't paste my code into the tool to modify already-existing rooms).

So I decided to rewrite it. The end result isn't perfect, but seemed worth the time. (about an hour and a half). It fixes those issues and a few other minor niggles from Kirk's editor. It's posted at http://www.tolberts.net/pf.html and the code is fully contained in that one page, (other than pulling in dependencies from google) in case anyone wants to take it and improve upon it.

I also started on the next enemy, the Green Toady (the first difficult enemy from the first dungeon in GBA Anguna). I've got him working, but now realized that I don't have a mechanism for enemies sprites to flip horizontally depending on their direction. It didn't look too strange for the slimes, but it looks dumb for this guy to always face the same direction.

The 2600 has a register to flip sprites horizontally, but because I'm reusing the player-2 sprite for all the enemies on the screen, I have to update that register in the display kernel. In other words, it has to be fast, and fit somewhere in the kernel where I have unused cycles. So that's the next challenge waiting for me....

Those are supposed to be pillars, but I've been told it looks more like "The Illini Room"

Looking at that screenshot, I really need to go back and rework the top header bar. It's a mess of brokenness right now.

Comments

Tim Dudek said…
So is that guy the alligator from the first dungeon?? :)
Nathan Tolbert said…
No, he's the Green Toady, the guy from this screenshot: http://www.tolberts.net/anguna/screenshots/angunaLevel2.png

Popular posts from this blog

Retrospex 32 Review

RetrospexInternational recently sent me a couple units of their new handheld device, the Retrospex 32, a new dedicated GameboyAdvance emulator handheld.  To make the unit playable out of the box, they pre-loaded a handful of homebrew games, including Anguna, which is why they were kind enough to send me 2 of the units to play with.  I was pretty excited to get my hands on the device and try it (I loved my old GBA micro with a good flash cart!), and see Anguna running on it. So here's my thoughts after playing with it.



Their website lists the Retrospex 32 for £59.99, which is around $100 USD. It seems like it's marketed toward people into retro-gaming (which makes sense for a dedicated GBA emulator device). At that price, with that target market, and such a limited set of functionality (why not make it a multi-machine emulator, and emulate all the old consoles?), it would hopefully do a really good job of it.

The short version of my review: it doesn't. It has one job (emula…

Making the game fun

The real trick for Spacey McRacey (as I'm calling it now) is going to be making it fun.  And that's what I'm rather unsure about at this point.

I have a game design that basically works. The technical issues are mostly sorted out, I just need to get a few more implemented before I can seriously play test it.

But fun? It's hard to know if it's actually going to be any fun to play.  With a 4-player party-style game, it's seems like it might be hard to hit that fine line where everyone is close and competing, where everything feels exciting and tense, as opposed to tedious and boring.  And despite envisioning my game as fun, it might just be boring to play.

Some of that comes down to tweaking it. Tweaking the speeds, difficulties, etc, will make a difference. (If it's too easy to shoot people from behind, then it will be nearly impossible to hold a lead for very long, which could ruin it and make it no fun. If it's too hard to kill the guy in front, it wil…

Killer Queen

So at PRGE, I played an arcade game that just left me amazed.  Killer Queen.

It's a 10-player game. You have 2 cabinets linked together, and 5 players huddled on each one. Each one is a team of 5 people, working together to play a simple one-screen 2d platformer.  But what made it work was the high quality game design.

First, the game is relatively simple, yet there is a lot going on at once.  One player plays the queen, the most important and powerful character on the team. The others start as workers, but can become warriors who can fly around and attack in a very joust-like flappy contest of height.  The real trick is that there are three completely different ways to win: either collect a bunch of berries and bring them back to your base, or ride a REALLY SLOW snail across the screen (while other people try to kill you, and you hope your team protects you), or kill the enemy queen 3 times.  There's some other things going on as well (using berries to upgrade, capturing upgr…