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Old 12 January 2017, 18:46   #101
DamienD
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Heya guys,

Today I've been undertaking the laborious task of updating my "MameUI64" collection from 0.170 --> 0.180.

Anyway, one of the news ROMs I downloaded was called "Bestri (Korea, set 2)"...

The screenshot looks a lot like AlarCity:



Did you guys get inspiration from this? Note that I haven't played Bestri but I'm sure the gameplay is nothing like AlarCity
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Old 12 January 2017, 19:11   #102
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Cool find But never heard of it. What genre is this?
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Old 12 January 2017, 20:20   #103
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Cool find But never heard of it. What genre is this?
Not sure, still updating all my ROMs (which will take some time)

Here's some more information and video: http://www.gamesdatabase.org/game/arcade/bestri

Edit: just watching, it's an type of Arkanoid clone
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Old 28 January 2017, 06:47   #104
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1st progress update of '17!

As of today we've completed and integrated into the game a huge chunk of features and gfx planned for demo v1.0! Here's an inclusive list:

UIs & Shop:
----------
- New, intuitive shop design with extended functionality and inventory management.
- Revised looks, new animated selectors, shop effects and parts
- Inventories for your purchased Weapons and Effects
- Ability to Equip different Weapons to your HUD slots
- Universal use of Effects, ability to equip them to any Weapon you own
- Ability to Sell your Weapons and Effects
- In-game quick equip Weapon to HUD slot via 1-9 keys or Weapons cycle button
- In-game quick equip Effect to current selected HUD slot and Weapon via F1-F6 keys or Effects cycle button
- More weapon 'Speed' and 'Power' upgrade steps!
- Effects "Damage" upgradability: Make your Effect more lethal!
- Effects "Efficiency" upgradability: Improve your Effect's performance! (ex. make it push enemies further away e.t.c.)
- New 'Backfire' Weapon versions of 'Spread' and 'Rapid'
- New 'Purple' Effect: Destroys enemy bullets and collects items (coins & stuff) in it's path!
- Zoid speed upgrades: Make your character move faster!
- Ability to purchase health and other extras from the shop


In-Game:
--------
- Revised character design and animation
- Character 'Entry' anim
- Flash and screen shake effects
- New character death explosion anim
- Collectable items: 3 gem types added, revised health and new 'collect' effect
- New projectile explosion and sparkle effects
- Expanded tileset


Main Menus:
-----------
- Animated Pixelglass intro
- New Main Menu looks
- Completely revised 'Controls' page with the ability to select different configurations and shooting methods using 1 button, 2 button joystick or cd-32 joypad!


Game engine:
------------
- General in-game performance upgrade
- Better loading times
- Better memory management


Still to come/currently WIP:
-------------------------------

1) 'Ethereal Blaze' milestone: this new planned "god mode" powerup will turn your body into an unstoppable force of destruction!

2) Enemies milestone: We've got currently 22 new enemy types to implement! This milestone is basically the bulk of the work that's left. More on this subject with a more detailed presentation of enemy types later on

3) Difficulty progression milestone: with all the new stuff included the difficulty progression of the survival mode will see a fresh re-design.
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Old 28 January 2017, 08:36   #105
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Sounds great guys!

btw I haven't pre ordered because I'm old fashioned lol when it's complete and ready to ship I'll buy a copy!
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Old 29 January 2017, 00:39   #106
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I can't believe I missed this very nice project, I guess this is what happens when one takes a pause from the EAB.

Will be pre-ordering soon but first of all take your time, there is no rush!
Also, be wary of community feedback, not that it is a bad thing per se but the vocal kittens are very often not representative of the target market so heavy filters are needed in order to extract constructive and useful elements from that feedback.
Of course this doesn't apply to me so please add support for multi button joy pads (MegaDrive 6, CD32, etc.). (kidding aside, I think it is worth it to add an input configuration menu so that everyone can configure their setup as they like).
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Old 29 January 2017, 01:27   #107
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Originally Posted by earok View Post
In short, we're pushing AGA to the limits.

We're using all 8 bitplanes and all 8 sprites, so we need a narrower window than 320x pixels. But the square display is also a stylistic choice.
Note that you can still have 8 sprites with 320 scrolling pixels. There are two ways of obtaining this, either:
1) shift the screen 16 bits to the right, this allows the 8th Sprite fetch to not conflict with display data fetches
or:
2) set the Sprite data manually using the copper list: at the right edge of the screen, put the required data in the Sprite register. If your copper list is regular, you can use the blitter to do that in one single pass and that will cost you very little.

We had a discussion in 2015 about fetch modes and AGA where we discussed possible ways to abuse the fast fetch modes in order to achieve scrolling with AGA without sacrificing the sprites, it is probably worth studying.
Here it is.

Now, if you really want a square screen, then, well, forget what I said.
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Old 29 January 2017, 02:00   #108
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Thanks!

As noted in the list above, multibutton joypad support is already implemented with the new version we're preparing! This includes cd-32 joypad. Mega drive joypad can be used if any 2 button configuration is selected . For the moment there's no real button mapping you can select other than preconfigured setups. Nevertheless we're giving the player the option to choose between more than one configurations per controller type.

Regarding feedback, I would just add that despite of it's origin, heavy filters are needed anyway.

However with a more maximalistic approach in mind you could argue that from any feedback, even if it seems totally irrelevant or invalid, one could possibly extract usefull material to work with (as opposed to having zero feedback to start with).

So it becomes more of a problem of quantity rather than quality. Question is how do you address or get feedback from that broader audience?

Last edited by Tsak; 29 January 2017 at 02:33. Reason: correct info given
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Old 29 January 2017, 02:05   #109
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Quote:
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So it becomes more of a problem of quantity rather than quality. Question is how do you address or get feedback from that broader audience?
Facebook.
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Old 29 January 2017, 02:12   #110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReadOnlyCat View Post
Note that you can still have 8 sprites with 320 scrolling pixels. There are two ways of obtaining this, either:
1) shift the screen 16 bits to the right, this allows the 8th Sprite fetch to not conflict with display data fetches
or:
2) set the Sprite data manually using the copper list: at the right edge of the screen, put the required data in the Sprite register. If your copper list is regular, you can use the blitter to do that in one single pass and that will cost you very little.

We had a discussion in 2015 about fetch modes and AGA where we discussed possible ways to abuse the fast fetch modes in order to achieve scrolling with AGA without sacrificing the sprites, it is probably worth studying.
Here it is.

Now, if you really want a square screen, then, well, forget what I said.
Cheers for the feedback.

Is this with all 8 bitplanes..? Is there a demo of this working? (dual playfield, 8 bitplanes total with all 8 sprites)

The Blitz manual itself says:

Quote:
With many of the new AGA modes sprite DMA has been screwed up something severe.
Those wanting to use 8 bitplanes and 8 sprites in lores will be disapointed to hear that
their displays must be modified to some 256 pixels across.
Re: Six button pads, it's literally impossible to support all six buttons on a Mega Drive pad without swapping pins 5 and 7, and even then I'd need to find some code to support it.

But it'll work in two button mode on Mega Drive pad (B and C) just fine. CD32 pad's already supported.
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Old 29 January 2017, 23:08   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsak View Post
As noted in the list above, multibutton joypad support is already implemented with the new version we're preparing! This includes cd-32 joypad. Mega drive joypad can be used if any 2 button configuration is selected . For the moment there's no real button mapping you can select other than preconfigured setups. Nevertheless we're giving the player the option to choose between more than one configurations per controller type.
Oh, nice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsak View Post
Regarding feedback, I would just add that despite of it's origin, heavy filters are needed anyway.
Yup.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsak View Post
However with a more maximalistic approach in mind you could argue that from any feedback, even if it seems totally irrelevant or invalid, one could possibly extract usefull material to work with (as opposed to having zero feedback to start with).

So it becomes more of a problem of quantity rather than quality. Question is how do you address or get feedback from that broader audience?
Exactly. There is a point where the amount of work needed to extract valid information from the feedback exceeds the benefit you gain from it, and in my opinion that point is easily reached (I would love to be wrong though).

Also, as you said, more data (quantity) does not necessarily equate useful data (quality) so the challenge becomes selecting data sources which:
- have a high quality content (no need to filter too much)
- have a high density of information (no need to collect millions)
- are representative of the target market (no wasted effort).

How to do that? I wish I knew for sure but I would wager that selecting beta testers with consistent constructive and articulated comments is a reasonable approximation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by earok View Post
Is this with all 8 bitplanes..? Is there a demo of this working? (dual playfield, 8 bitplanes total with all 8 sprites)

The Blitz manual itself says:
Quote:
a dreadful thing
Hum.. I cannot answer for sure.
I do not recall all the details of the discussion alas so i cannot guarantee that this would be doable for 8 bitplanes. NorthWay is the kitten who did the tests so I would pounce him on until he reveals more information if I were you. The Wilen kitten might know too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by earok View Post
Re: Six button pads, it's literally impossible to support all six buttons on a Mega Drive pad without swapping pins 5 and 7, and even then I'd need to find some code to support it.

But it'll work in two button mode on Mega Drive pad (B and C) just fine. CD32 pad's already supported.
Yups, absolutely, this would be with a pin inverter so the Amiga can use the 6 button protocol of the MegaDrive to talk to the controller.
The protocol is a bit different than the one used by the CD32 but it is very simple to implement.
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Old 30 January 2017, 01:45   #112
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Quote:
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Exactly. There is a point where the amount of work needed to extract valid information from the feedback exceeds the benefit you gain from it, and in my opinion that point is easily reached (I would love to be wrong though).

Also, as you said, more data (quantity) does not necessarily equate useful data (quality) so the challenge becomes selecting data sources which:
- have a high quality content (no need to filter too much)
- have a high density of information (no need to collect millions)
- are representative of the target market (no wasted effort).

How to do that? I wish I knew for sure but I would wager that selecting beta testers with consistent constructive and articulated comments is a reasonable approximation.
All the above in an idealised situation, when there's plenty of data to choose from, yes. But we're currently in a state where feedback is not abundant anyway. So you have to work with the given material and limitations, right?

Other than that a beta tester team might be useful indeed.
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Old 30 January 2017, 04:38   #113
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All the above in an idealised situation, when there's plenty of data to choose from, yes. But we're currently in a state where feedback is not abundant anyway. So you have to work with the given material and limitations, right?
This kitten agrees.
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Old 14 February 2017, 05:48   #114
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I was just looking at the YouTube video and a thought occurred to me. Could you have some kind of border? A customisable border would be a nice feature, I don't know if you're using the sprites for anything, but if you've got a couple of sprite channels free you could use them to do it with very little overhead.

Anyway, Alien Fish Finger was mentioned as an example of a good recent Amiga game. And one thing that game did which encouraged replaying the game after it had been mastered is the inclusion of achievements as are common in modern games. It's pretty safe to say I will probably play this a lot more if the final version has such a feature.

It could also encourage players to try your suggested strategies if there were an achievement for using each combination of weapons for example. In games achievements can often be a device to encourage the player to play a certain way(s) that the designers intended.
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Old 14 February 2017, 13:02   #115
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We're currently using all sprites for the player and his projectiles (and other stuff too). Other than that I'm not sure if having some kind of border (left and right I suppose?) is even possible with current configuration.

Achievents is a cool idea.
We'll see if we can fit something like this in the final game.
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Old 27 February 2017, 08:55   #116
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"Fly you fools!"

One of the most exciting and cool looking features we've planned for are the so called "God mode" powerups! Once collected they will let you unleash briefly your full Godlike potencial! Currently we've managed to implement and add to the demo a first set of such powerups. You can see at the pic above "Ethereal Blaze" in action!
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Old 28 February 2017, 14:26   #117
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UI placeholders, be gone!


Fireproof wood patent included!

Yes, yes, YES! One major missing link regarding the game's gfx, presentation (and design) is finally complete!
For a first time since the beginning the UIs lose their placeholder skin to a proper pixel art decorated theme! On top of that, the new UIs offer not only a visual but an overall upgrade on the old designs, facilitating the main bulk of the end game planned functionality, Survival AND Story mode alike!

This announcement actually carries much more weight than it may look in the first place, as it means that we have already progressed with the end game and Story mode design: the basic layers of the story itself have been set, the plot is more or less determined and whatever we've created so far (from map sets to characters, weapons, collectables and enemies) have been already fused into it!

At the same time the overall game itself has made a big turn towards a more RPGish structure incorporating key elements into it, namely a leveling system for your Character and the hunt for all those powers which become available at the Shop UI (like Weapons, Elements and other stuff) in the form of collectable Power Orbs!
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Old 28 February 2017, 14:34   #118
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Nice updates guys!

One thing that font is quite hard to read on that background, probably because it gets darker on the edges of the font.
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Old 28 February 2017, 18:31   #119
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Thanks! Good point, I'll see to improve this.

Just note that in fullscreen the whole deal is significantly more readable.
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Old 01 March 2017, 10:36   #120
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Looks great guys!
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