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Old 10 May 2015, 10:10   #21
JudasEZT
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Originally Posted by Shatterhand View Post
Do you think a kickstarter for an Amiga game would really work? That's something I had thought about.
Also I though in a Kickstarter. Not too ambitious though. In the end, it would be a contribution to the games machine you love..

I suppose it depends of how many people get interested.
Many retro-consolers could want the game if they look it as a new SMS-NES-Megadrive-SNES game..

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Old 10 May 2015, 10:23   #22
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I think that Kickstarter would work, well, we will do not know till somebody decide to make some amiga game there with reasonable money goal to achieve.
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Old 10 May 2015, 11:09   #23
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If it's all about love, why old amiga game developers (hundreds of them) which have the knowledge don't make a game every now and then just for fun? I don't think they hate the Amiga but it needs considerable time maybe a year or so and a team of 3 persons to make a quality game.
That's something you'd have to ask them directly but i'd suspect that the commercial programmers don't do it for commercial reasons - if you look at it from that perspective it is, as Shatterhand said, hard to justify the time especially if their day job still involves writing code. But for the main part at least, the people doing 8-bit games now aren't the coders who were doing it commercially in the 1980s either, they were the ones playing games who have either gone on to learn the skills required or had some of them already from writing demos.

Personally, i've always seen it as a hobby like fishing, playing games or restoring an old vehicle, you put time, effort and often money into it but don't expect anything back apart from enjoyment of the challenges involved and the more occasional sense of achievement when something is finished. You don't really have to justify the time with hobbies because they're more about letting off steam (especially if said hobby involves old trains... sorry, couldn't resist) than anything else.

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Amiga graphics (with arcade resolution, 4096 colors, copper, sprites, plus various tricks) are not programmers graphics and require a lot of planning and some chips to control to get things going.
That's equally true with the 8-bit systems, working within their restrictions require lots of planning and a good control of the chips, but the Amiga has the option of high level languages which make those jobs easier where the 8-bits don't.
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Old 10 May 2015, 11:25   #24
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I think that Kickstarter would work, well, we will do not know till somebody decide to make some amiga game there with reasonable money goal to achieve.
If someone were going to write a new Amiga game as a "day job" then the funding has to basically pay everyone involved a living wage for that period along with covering costs of producing the various goals and rewards, making it pretty much unrealistic.

If said people are going to develop in their spare time then the funding is more about motivation than anything else so it could probably be done outside the constraints of Kickstarter with a Paypal "begging bowl" and each amount of X donated translates into the coders finding Y hours to develop. i'm not sure that's a good idea however because, even if it's clearly stated that a donation guarantees nothing in the long run (since there's almost certainly not going to be enough "funding" to get a complete game done) people will still have expectations.
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Old 10 May 2015, 11:40   #25
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I don't think you can really compare the Amiga to the C64 - The Amiga homebrew scene should be compared to the Atari ST / Megadrive and SNES - against which I think it looks quite healthy.

The C64 scene should be compared against the spectrum which is equally good and the other 8 bit machines - BBC Micro - Amstrad which I think are less active.

The Amiga scene is quite healthy when compared to its 16 bit counterparts but to produce a good game takes a long time - to design - programme - produce graphics and new music for a game will probably take two years to do - Solid Gold - released in 2014 originally started development two years earlier.

There are many projects which get started but stall due to either a lack of programming skill , poor graphic skills or poor music creation skills - the solution is then to team up with a programmer / artist and musician - but then projects stall as it is difficult to keep 3 people motivated to complete a project for fun.

Even producing a game using game design tools such as Reality / Backbone will take 12 months to produce new graphics / music and produce something large like Tales of Gorluth.

Having interviewed around 40 programmers who were active in the Amiga homebrew scene back in the 1990s - most of them have moved on to mobile phone games or small commercial projects for other newer machines - or left programming.

For the Amiga scene to have a surge in games - two things would need to happen - firstly an easy to use game creator would need to be released to enable more people to become involved in game making on the amiga but there is little incentive for someone to create this - secondly the demand for the machine would need to increase to make it worthwhile to release a game on the machine - Realistically, I think the most potential sales you could hope for would be 100 at a price of under 5 and if you looked at 10 or 20 under 50 units.

If you are interested in seeing how long it takes to develop a simple game on the Amiga- you can follow the development of my Amiga Dizzy game on the following facebook page -

https://www.facebook.com/amigapd

The game was started November 2014 - and I estimated it would take to July 2015 to finish which I hope to meet the deadline but work / family and other commitments can hinder progress.

Overall, the Amiga will never have lots and lots of games released each month or year - but you should normally get at least one good homebrew title released each year - I would argue that 2013 - 2014 were good years for the Amiga (Incredible Adventures of Moebius Goatlizard - Solid Gold - Solomon's Key -International Karate - Maxwell Mouse And The Missing Game Mystery and lets not forget Putty Squad finally got released on the Amiga as a freeware title.
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Old 10 May 2015, 11:47   #26
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When i planned a game in backbone i calculated about 6 months to finish and then in the end it would be a dumb game due to backbone not having enough features (time, weapons ammo, moving platforms) and being so slow that needs 68030 for a simple Atari ST like game.
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Old 10 May 2015, 12:11   #27
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The simple truth is although there has been a major resurgence in hardware buying and expansions, it's obvious the lack of coders means there is not as much interest that side.

As has been said earlier in this discussion. Planning and programming an Amiga game takes a lot more effort than an 8 bit game.

Also the c64 has kept its scene coders about. Sure we have a handful of Amiga scene guys here but due to the constant changing of the Amiga many either moved on to PC or into mobile.

The 8 bit machines have not changed much making it easier to code for. The Amiga has various processor upgrades making it much more difficult to keep all users happy.

If you have to compare it to any machine it is like the PC. Various configurations, various different ways to go. It equally is now suffering with a lack of home brew games.
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Old 10 May 2015, 12:18   #28
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I guess, an interesting side question is why are not recent megadrive / snes releases also converted to the Amiga / Atari ST - I am guessing it is not commercially viable for companies to convert e.g. Watermelon's Pier Solar was released on Megadrive and is now being converted to Dreamcast with new graphics.

Also, there is nothing to stop C64 homebrew games being converted to the Amiga - there were quite a lot of C64 homebrew inspired released on the Amiga by Ard Joose - but is the amiga gaming public in 2015 likely to be as happy playing games like this as they were in 1990s -



fundamentally I think the amiga public expect games produced to a commercial standard, released for free, made by one person who is completing the project for fun or to learn game making skills - this combination very rarely exists.
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Old 10 May 2015, 12:22   #29
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But for the main part at least, the people doing 8-bit games now aren't the coders who were doing it commercially in the 1980s either, they were the ones playing games who have either gone on to learn the skills required or had some of them already from writing demos.

Personally, i've always seen it as a hobby like fishing, playing games or restoring an old vehicle, you put time, effort and often money into it but don't expect anything back apart from enjoyment of the challenges involved and the more occasional sense of achievement when something is finished.
<terrible steam train joke removed for brevity>

^^ This, 1000 * this. Make an Amiga game for your own satisfaction - if other people like it when/if you release it publically, this is a bonus.

If your reason for coding an Amiga game is for fame/wealth, I suggest you move along... nothing to see here!
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Old 10 May 2015, 12:44   #30
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You do get the impression that Amiga users expect higher production values and that may put people off trying. Also is there the same appetite for homebrew from amiga users that exists on the other platforms? If you release a game and get a muted response it'll put you off doing anything more, even if you were originally programming for yourself it is hard not to be affected by it.
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Old 10 May 2015, 12:51   #31
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You're both making fairly bold claims about how much more difficult the Amiga is than the C64 so are you basing that verdict on experience with both...?
Experience. Believe me the C64 is a doddle for a hobbyist programmer compared to the Amiga. If you want to make decent games for a plain A500 you need to understand a lot more than for a C64. I'm surprised anyone would try to construe Amiga programming as simple as writing for 64.

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That's equally true with the 8-bit systems, working within their restrictions require lots of planning and a good control of the chips, but the Amiga has the option of high level languages which make those jobs easier where the 8-bits don't.
You can equally program in C on the 64 if you want to. But using high level languages on either system is a massive waste of cycles.

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People are whining all the time about "why is this or that not made if it seems feasible or why this game wasn't converted if it was possible"... you know what? You are right, but nobody actually GOES AND DOES IT and that's why you don't have it.
I think that's a strawman, because nobody is whining. Asking a question isn't moaning. I don't mind the slow trickle of Amiga games, really. The Amiga has so much PD software already it'd take an age to try every one.

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Old 10 May 2015, 13:23   #32
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Even producing a game using game design tools such as Reality / Backbone will take 12 months to produce new graphics / music and produce something large like Tales of Gorluth.
Not every game needs to be massive and more small games being released are signs of activity that can encourage people working on larger projects.

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Realistically, I think the most potential sales you could hope for would be 100 at a price of under 5 and if you looked at 10 or 20 under 50 units.
So don't look at it that way...?

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If you release a game and get a muted response it'll put you off doing anything more, even if you were originally programming for yourself it is hard not to be affected by it.
Code for yourself and, if you get a positive response, that's just gravy. Who knows, if you prod that idiot who does the homebrew section of Retro Gamer he might review it, stick a news item in or ask for a Making Of interview...

Also, i'm comedy sulking at WayneK because i was quite proud of that steam train joke!

Edit: thinking about it, i'm going to step away from this thread now... i've probably said more than i should.

Last edited by TMR; 10 May 2015 at 13:42. Reason: Change of heart
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Old 10 May 2015, 13:47   #33
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Code for yourself and, if you get a positive response, that's just gravy. Who knows, if you prod that idiot who does the homebrew section of Retro Gamer he might review it, stick a news item in or ask for a Making Of interview...
Speaking of which, I hope you will get around to covering Maxwell Mouse soon which I sent you as a PM on Facebook some months back
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Old 10 May 2015, 13:57   #34
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Speaking of which, I hope you will get around to covering Maxwell Mouse soon which I sent you as a PM on Facebook some months back
Oh dear... sorry, i'm completely crap with Facebook, point me in the right direction and i'll put it on the "to do" list for issue 144. Actually... fancy doing a Making Of? =-)
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Old 10 May 2015, 14:55   #35
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The C64 scene should be compared against the spectrum which is equally good
Hmm, are you sure we are following the same ZX Spectrum scene? The C64 has great new Demos which constantly show innovation and new effects, things that were thought not possible just a few years before, ZX Spectrum doesn't have any demos scene, at least nothing worth mentioning. C64 gets quite a few new games each year, a lot of those games are of great quality and again show something new and exciting, ZX Spectrum on the other hand gets maybe one quality game every few years but it does get a lot of games created with some of the "game maker" tools which look like copies of each other and don't give you anything new or exciting.

The C64 scene is BY FAR the best retro computer scene currently... there is no other 8 or 16 bit computer/console that comes even close... it is just great. In some respects it is better than back in the hayday of c64.
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Old 10 May 2015, 15:24   #36
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Oh dear... sorry, i'm completely crap with Facebook, point me in the right direction and i'll put it on the "to do" list for issue 144. Actually... fancy doing a Making Of? =-)
Is that invitation only to Graham - or does it extend to others who were involved in the project? (I assisted with the background graphics) Or are you prepared to do two Amiga related articles , one on Maxwell and the other on Software Creation tools on the Amiga linked to the upcoming Dylan the Spaceman game which could encourage others with limited programming knowledge to actually attempt to make a plaform / shoot em up / Dizzy game for their favourite retro system?

In reply to earlier posts

Quote:
Not every game needs to be massive and more small games being released are signs of activity that can encourage people working on larger projects.
This is true, but even small games can hit a stumbling block, after interviewing a PD programmer for the 1990s - they shared a fun, two player, half finished game, which was the shooting stage of hyper sports - all that was needed for the game to be released was a title page - a high score routine and a loop to take you back to the start so the game didn't end - this was shared with the EAB forum but only person was willing to take it on - months later the game is still sitting unfinished.

Small games are fine, my Dylan the Spaceman, I would class as a small game - 60 screens - but will still take almost a year to finish - even using existing game maker software (Reality) you still hit stumbling blocks - for me - in game music - I have posted two requests for help with music with no take up yet - not even a simple yes I have an old music file which would be suitable.

Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by amigapd
Realistically, I think the most potential sales you could hope for would be 100 at a price of under 5 and if you looked at 10 or 20 under 50 units.

So don't look at it that way...?
This sort of got taken out of context - the question at the start of this thread was why is there not as many games being made as homebrew on the Amiga as C64

The issue of price is an important one, as many of the PD programmers of the era were releasing as shareware - Edgar Vidal, Michael P. Welch, etc - so the reason they are not making games on the amiga is purely commercial - if the demand was there, I am sure they would release on both Amiga and Mobile formats.

To replace these programmers , you need people who used the system in the 90s but didn't programme to have the desire to learn and complete projects - there are a few such individuals, but often these projects get left unfinished for being too ambitous. Also, if you are going to allocate time to learn how to programme, create music, and create pixel art, you are probably more likely want to do it on live systems so you can get some form of financial reward. As in most things people make a choice of how to use their time and this is often linked to enjoyment or money. If you enjoyed programming the Amiga - chances are you made games for the Amiga and are still involved in programming but on newer tech - if you enjoyed playing games on the amiga but wanted to learn how to program - chances are you are still playing games on the amiga and still have the lack of motivation to learn to code - the last group will be individuals who tried to code on the Amiga but found it difficult to produce games to be released at the time due to a lack of free time / expertise - these individuals probably still will make games but will still have the problems of little free time and expertise to produce games quickly and regularly.

I also think the Amiga scene isn't as dire as portrayed - I sent a PDF of our e-book about the Amiga scene to Retro Gamer - but it hasn't been covered - I am guessing a lack of coverage of what is going on in the Amiga scene (no coverage of books written about it - no coverage of demo games Maxwell + Dylan the Spaceman etc ) gives the impression in the non specialised Amiga press that the scene is less active than is the case. I have also written and released two Amiga games in the last five years - both of which were covered in Amiga Future but not in Retro Gamer. If there was a bit more press coverage, perhaps that would encourage more people to make games.

When I set up Amiga PD website five years ago, my knowledge of the Amiga homebrew scene was limited to articles in retro gamer - and I posed the same question as at the start of this thread - why were there few gamers being made for the Amiga - since creating a website dedicated to Amiga homebrew - interviewing past and current programmers and creating Amiga games I have found that there is a core group of programmers still making games for the machine - they just don't get as much coverage.

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Hmm, are you sure we are following the same ZX Spectrum scene? The C64 has great new Demos which constantly show innovation and new effects, things that were thought not possible just a few years before, ZX Spectrum doesn't have any demos scene, at least nothing worth mentioning. c64.
Apologies, I don't follow really either the C64 or Spectrum scene in great detail, other than games and I was linking the two in terms of current games being released - Castlevania on the Speccy and Knight n Grail on the C64.

I think the point I make in my previous post - if you are active in the scene you know a lot more of what is happening - I am quite proactive in the Amiga homebrew game scene and think there are quite a few good games being made and released - equally, you are more knowledgable on the C64 scene and will know lots of current and recent projects on that machine. I only really linked the C64 with the Spectrum in terms of their technical specs and extended it to other 8 bit machines to make the point it is often quicker to develop for these machines than it is for 16 bit machines and similarly the Dreamcast will have fewer regularly releases due to the jump in expectations and hardware. Therefore the Amiga should be expected to have fewer games released than the Spectrum and C64 but more than the Dreamcast.

Last edited by TCD; 10 May 2015 at 15:40. Reason: Back-to-back posts merged.
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Old 10 May 2015, 16:01   #37
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Is that invitation only to Graham - or does it extend to others who were involved in the project? (I assisted with the background graphics) Or are you prepared to do two Amiga related articles , one on Maxwell and the other on Software Creation tools on the Amiga linked to the upcoming Dylan the Spaceman game which could encourage others with limited programming knowledge to actually attempt to make a plaform / shoot em up / Dizzy game for their favourite retro system?
Officially my brief is to cover games (Make This lets me get around that to a degree but not much) so it'd have to be a Making Of about Dylan The Spaceman after it's released which mentions the tools rather than t'other way around but yes, i'm always interested. As far as Maxwell goes, i'll happily talk to both of you for the interview and will get my act together next week at some point once i've recovered from finishing the current issue (it's open on my other desktop waiting for a final proof read) and, hopefully, the raging toothache i've been nursing since Play Blackpool. =-)

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I have posted two requests for help with music with no take up yet - not even a simple yes I have an old music file which would be suitable.
It might be worth stepping into the wider demoscene community, perhaps?

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This sort of got taken out of context - the question at the start of this thread was why is there not as many games being made as homebrew on the Amiga as C64
Homebrew is a very vague term, essentially anything being done now for 8- and 16-bit systems is homebrew by the definition i tend to lean towards but there's a few people who stick to the version that says it doesn't count unless you've hand soldered a cartridge or something...

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I also think the Amiga scene isn't as dire as portrayed - I sent a PDF of our e-book about the Amiga scene to Retro Gamer - but it hasn't been covered - I am guessing a lack of coverage of what is going on in the Amiga scene (no coverage of books written about it - no coverage of demo games Maxwell + Dylan the Spaceman etc ) gives the impression in the non specialised Amiga press that the scene is less active than is the case.
i didn't get the PDF of the book sent over for review (and tend to be a fairly slow reader with books so it would've taken a while to do properly!) so can't comment, but things do get missed because i'm following a worrying amount of forums, RSS feeds and other sources. The best solution is probably to PM me here and i'd honestly rather get ten messages about something new than none at all.
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Old 10 May 2015, 16:33   #38
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As far as Maxwell goes, i'll happily talk to both of you for the interview
Thank you - I think, I was just being a bit annoyed that the assumption that the game was an idividual project and just wanted to make the point that there was a team behind its creation - Predseda was also involved in creating the sprites and intro graphics and there is also another individual involved with the music - even with a team of four this project still hits the buffers which just shows the difficulty with creating games on the Amiga. The founding idea behind Remainder software was to bring programmers / musicians and artist together to make more Amiga games which it is being successful in doing.

I will PM you my email address - if you reply I will be able to send a demo of the Dylan game - even though you only cover finished games - with advanced deadlines it might be helpful to start the process so that the article would appear near the time of the games release - I can also send a the PDF of the book to you too!
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Old 10 May 2015, 16:42   #39
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Oh dear... sorry, i'm completely crap with Facebook, point me in the right direction and i'll put it on the "to do" list for issue 144. Actually... fancy doing a Making Of? =-)
No problem. To be honest, as it was months ago I should have shown a bit of initiative and contacted you via other means. You can check our website at http://maxwell.mikendezign.com

It's a demo of the full Maxwell game we are working on, although it's been done as a small game in its own right (i.e. it's totally self-contained and the level on show won't be in the full game). If you want to talk to me and Chris (and Predseda!) about it please feel free, it would be great to have that coverage
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Hmm, are you sure we are following the same ZX Spectrum scene? The C64 has great new Demos which constantly show innovation and new effects, things that were thought not possible just a few years before, ZX Spectrum doesn't have any demos scene, at least nothing worth mentioning. C64 gets quite a few new games each year, a lot of those games are of great quality and again show something new and exciting, ZX Spectrum on the other hand gets maybe one quality game every few years but it does get a lot of games created with some of the "game maker" tools which look like copies of each other and don't give you anything new or exciting.

The C64 scene is BY FAR the best retro computer scene currently... there is no other 8 or 16 bit computer/console that comes even close... it is just great. In some respects it is better than back in the hayday of c64.
I totally disagree with this (well, the Spectrum comments anyway). I follow new releases for both machines very closely (I own both computers) and I have been extremely impressed with the standard of new Spectrum games (I can't comment on demos as I don't watch them; they don't interest me at all).

Over the course of 2014 and 2015 so far we have had:

Ninjajar!
Dream Walker: Alter Ego 2
Gravibots
Ninja Twins: Going To Zedinaks
Zen
Metal Man Reloaded
Multidude
Sector: Invasion
S.I.P
Kyd Cadet 3
Bomb Munchies
Cousin Horace
Sir Ababol 2
X=Y=Z
Captain Drexx
Balachor's Revenge
Wanderer: Chained In The Dark
El Stompo
Sunbucket
Willy The Wasp 1 & 2
A Game About Squares
Page's Castle Quest
Castlevania: Spectral Interlude
Pets vs Aliens Prologue
The Tales Of Grupp
Ice Slider Z
Stormfinch
Pentacorn Quest
Uroboros
Vade Retro
A Prelude To Chaos
Rescue Lander
Page And The Curse Of The Pharaoh

...and some more I have probably missed. Yes, some of these were made in 'Game Maker' programs like Arcade Game Designer (most aren't) but ultimately if they're good it doesn't matter. The standard, as a whole, is significantly better than you give it credit for and certainly better than the Amiga. The C64 has been great too of course.

Last edited by Graham Humphrey; 10 May 2015 at 16:56.
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Old 10 May 2015, 17:23   #40
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I think the problem is when programmer make somethings on Amiga but hopeless on graphics or sound/music as that could be reason why not many game been made than C64....I could be wrong thought...
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