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Old 22 September 2020, 09:49   #1
Matt_H
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Before there was MegaBall... there was BALL

I've been trying to find this early version of what later evolved into MegaBall. I had it years ago but now the original downloaded archive is long gone. Has anyone come across it more recently? I don't know if it ever made it over to the European BBSes... hopefully it did because the pre-Aminet file repos on this side of the pond have not been well preserved...


PD/Shareware game by Ed Mackey, circa 1990/1991. Thanks in advance!
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Old 22 September 2020, 13:05   #2
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Assassin's 13

http://www.gamescoffer.co.uk/configt...gd=assassins13
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Old 22 September 2020, 19:03   #3
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Thanks, I found that shortly after posting... but it's incomplete. The original icons, docs, datestamps on the files are missing.

So, halfway there - still looking for the original distribution archive.
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Old 05 October 2020, 21:57   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt_H View Post
Thanks, I found that shortly after posting... but it's incomplete. The original icons, docs, datestamps on the files are missing.

So, halfway there - still looking for the original distribution archive.
Find the original distribution of Ball in the Zone. It's on Club Amiga de Montreal PD disk #429, which was found on the CAM Club PD Compilation CD on the FTP server. Have fun!

Last edited by DrBong; 06 October 2020 at 00:48. Reason: Fixed typo + sentence!
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Old 06 October 2020, 06:02   #5
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@ DrBong

Good detective work, thanks! And just a few days from the game's 30th anniversary
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Old 07 October 2020, 20:35   #6
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No problem mate - glad to be of service! I already had the Assassins compilation version on my HD. Just took me a few minutes to track down the original release archive, thanks to the invaluable PD lists on Amiga-Stuff.com.
Anyway, I didn't realise that the game's 30th anniversary was coming up (geez, we're getting old! ). I might just have a way of commemorating it! Hmmm, stay tuned....

Last edited by DrBong; 07 October 2020 at 21:14. Reason: Added sentence!
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Old 11 October 2020, 13:07   #7
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Ooops, I posted this in the other thread... better here:

Disk in The Zone! made from Dr.Bong's .LHA



The game runs on OCS / ECS and AGA.

Last edited by DamienD; 14 October 2020 at 20:59.
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Old 11 October 2020, 21:20   #8
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Apols for hi-jacking the thread but as the topic of MegaBall has come up I was hoping I may be able to be put straignt on a possible misconception I have.

My Lager-addled memory from back-in-the-day tells me that in addition to the main Megaball release there were loads of third party PD disks with home-designed levels that you could get from the PD Libraries but I can't seem to find them now. Am I right & if so can someone point me to where to find these please or is this just another false memory ?

Thanks
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Old 11 October 2020, 22:47   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DamienD View Post
Ooops, I posted this in the other thread... better here:

Disk in The Zone! made from Dr.Bong's .LHA
Thanks for saving me the trouble Double D! Just a trivial thing, Ball is PD rather than shareware....so the archive you upped to the Zone may need a slight adjustment on the naming if it's to be included by the TOSEC people at a later stage. Anyway, good to see you returning to your roots and having some youthful fun with Amiga stuff sans the deafening background noise!

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My Lager-addled memory from back-in-the-day tells me that in addition to the main Megaball release there were loads of third party PD disks with home-designed levels that you could get from the PD Libraries but I can't seem to find them now. Am I right & if so can someone point me to where to find these please or is this just another false memory ?
Your beer-soaked memory still serves you well! Lots of homebrew stuff for MegaBall on Aminet:

http://aminet.net/search?query=megaball

Last edited by DrBong; 11 October 2020 at 22:58.
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Old 12 October 2020, 00:09   #10
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Thanks for saving me the trouble Double D! Just a trivial thing, Ball is PD rather than shareware....so the archive you upped to the Zone may need a slight adjustment on the naming if it's to be included by the TOSEC people at a later stage.
I thought as much.

I just went off the naming for the MegaBall series: http://grandis.nu/eabsearch/search.p...xclude=&limit=
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Old 12 October 2020, 00:24   #11
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Thanks for saving me the trouble Double D! Just a trivial thing, Ball is PD rather than shareware....so the archive you upped to the Zone may need a slight adjustment on the naming if it's to be included by the TOSEC people at a later stage. Anyway, good to see you returning to your roots and having some youthful fun with Amiga stuff sans the deafening background noise!
And, if possible, I would also note that the disk is unofficial and/or newly created. The disk/archive from Ed Mackey that was sent to CAM has yet to turn up.

There was source code in the CAM version, but no graphics or audio files to complete a build. Not sure yet if those were omitted from CAM of if they were never distributed in the first place.

Also, the CAM and Assassins releases were crunched with PowerPacker. I recently found just the Ball executable on an old hard drive - which I suspect came from that still-missing original archive via a BBS - and it was not crunched. I didn't know how to decrunch things myself back then, so that's probably how it was distributed.


Quote:
Your beer-soaked memory still serves you well! Lots of homebrew stuff for MegaBall on Aminet:

http://aminet.net/search?query=megaball
The MegaBall4 source code archive in particular contains heaps of boards, many of which were not widely circulated previously.
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Old 12 October 2020, 13:19   #12
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Brilliant thanks !
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Old 12 October 2020, 17:01   #13
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Thanks for saving me the trouble Double D! Just a trivial thing, Ball is PD rather than shareware....so the archive you upped to the Zone may need a slight adjustment on the naming if it's to be included by the TOSEC people at a later stage.
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I thought as much.

I just went off the naming for the MegaBall series: http://grandis.nu/eabsearch/search.p...xclude=&limit=
I've renamed the disk to "Ball v1.0 (1990)(Mackey, Ed - Mackey, Al)(PD).adf" and reuploaded to The Zone!
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Old 12 October 2020, 21:34   #14
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A couple of further dumb questions if I may ?

Am I right in thinking I can only run MegaBall 4 from an HD install ? I would prefer to run from ADFs (as thats how my PD collection is setup under WinUAE). If not would I be right in thinking I could run MegaBall 3 or 3 from ADFs & do these versions also allow you to load the range of HomeBrew 'Boards' as alrady mentioned earleir in this thread ?

Thanks again for any advice.
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Old 12 October 2020, 22:04   #15
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It’s intended to be HD installed, but it can run from floppy with a “manual” installation. On a single-disk setup you’ll have to forego (most of) the music. With multiple disk drives you’ll need to adjust the icon tooltypes so that it looks for the music on another volume rather than the relative path of MB_Music/. Boards are loaded via a standard file requester so those can be stored anywhere.
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Old 13 October 2020, 00:52   #16
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Arrow New HOL entry for BALL !!!

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Originally Posted by Matt_H View Post
@ DrBong

Good detective work, thanks! And just a few days from the game's 30th anniversary
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I didn't realise that the game's 30th anniversary was coming up (geez, we're getting old! ). I might just have a way of commemorating it! Hmmm, stay tuned....
I'm a coupla days late, but I've knocked up a new HOL entry for Ball to commemorate the game's 30th anniversary. It's a very impressive PD precursor to MegaBall by the Mackey brothers, indeed! Enjoy!!

BTW, check out the HOL double-barrel screenshot below with the Mackey brothers' subtle dig at IBuM!

Ball (PD) ------> http://hol.abime.net/5464 <------ (New HOL entry)


Last edited by DrBong; 13 October 2020 at 20:23. Reason: Added screenshot!
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Old 13 October 2020, 21:03   #17
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I've renamed the disk to "Ball v1.0 (1990)(Mackey, Ed - Mackey, Al)(PD).adf" and reuploaded to The Zone!
Unfortunately, your ADF didn't work on my A500/1MB machine Damien. It starts to boot and then craps out to CLI with an error (some sort of LoadWB error IIRC). I gather your ADF boots to a Workbench screen and then the game must be launched from the game directory??

Anyway, I needed to knock up a HOL entry last night for Ball and use my A500 to take screenshots with the Action Replay.....so I quickly adapted your ADF to autoboot straight into the game and included decrunched game exec + doc files since there was plenty of space on the disk. It tested fine on both my A500 and A1200/030. In the Zone for anyone interested....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt_H View Post
And, if possible, I would also note that the disk is unofficial and/or newly created. The disk/archive from Ed Mackey that was sent to CAM has yet to turn up.

There was source code in the CAM version, but no graphics or audio files to complete a build. Not sure yet if those were omitted from CAM of if they were never distributed in the first place.

Also, the CAM and Assassins releases were crunched with PowerPacker. I recently found just the Ball executable on an old hard drive - which I suspect came from that still-missing original archive via a BBS - and it was not crunched. I didn't know how to decrunch things myself back then, so that's probably how it was distributed.
Chances are Matt that CAM probably sourced their version of Ball from a BBS rather than directly from the Mackey brothers, so they may not have received the original decrunched archive (if that was, indeed, how it was distributed by the Mackey brothers when they released it into the public domain). As you probably know, a lot of PD games/utils on the North American BBS's were bundled (often in crunched form) on to compilation disks Fred Fish style back then.

As for the source code, my guess is that the graphics and audio files weren't distributed if the Mackey brothers had immediate plans to expand on Ball by developing shareware versions of it that were released as MegaBall a year later. We'll probably never know unless someone in your neck of the woods unearths some crusty old disk or hard drive/backup with the original PD release on it.
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Old 13 October 2020, 22:46   #18
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Unfortunately, your ADF didn't work on my A500/1MB machine Damien. It starts to boot and then craps out to CLI with an error (some sort of LoadWB error IIRC). I gather your ADF boots to a Workbench screen and then the game must be launched from the game directory??
Works fine with 2.x and above; the disk is OSF and not FFS also.

I don't know why it doesn't work on KS 1.3; I used "LoadWB" and "EndCLI" from this disk: "Workbench v1.3 rev 34.20 (1988)(Commodore)(A500-A2000)(GB)(Disk 1 of 2)(Workbench).adf".

I haven't seen this issue before and I've made loads of KS 1.3 disks using the above "LoadWB" and "EndCLI"...

The weird thing though is; after it "craps out", just type "LoadWB" and then "EndCLI" and all is good. Seems it doesn't like from the "S/Startup-Sequence" which is highly odd.

Anyway, will look / try to fix tomorrow night after work.
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Old 13 October 2020, 22:54   #19
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Yeh, I was quite surprised when it crapped out. Nothing in the startup-sequence looked out of place to my eyes. Weird!
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Old 13 October 2020, 23:19   #20
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Works fine with 2.x and above; the disk is OSF and not FFS also.

I don't know why it doesn't work on KS 1.3; I used "LoadWB" and "EndCLI" from this disk: "Workbench v1.3 rev 34.20 (1988)(Commodore)(A500-A2000)(GB)(Disk 1 of 2)(Workbench).adf".

I haven't seen this issue before and I've made loads of KS 1.3 disks using the above "LoadWB" and "EndCLI"...

The weird thing though is; after it "craps out", just type "LoadWB" and then "EndCLI" and all is good. Seems it doesn't like from the "S/Startup-Sequence" which is highly odd.

Anyway, will look / try to fix tomorrow night after work.
Quote:
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@DamienD
Yeh, I was quite surprised when it crapped out. Nothing in the startup-sequence looked out of place to my eyes. Weird!
Ok, totally my fault and a massive schoolboy error

I forgot that with 1.3 you need "icon.library" in order to display icons...

Adding this to disk fixed the issue.

New disk in The Zone! that works on all KS versions

Edit: slightly updated the disk to make it look better on KS 1.3:


Last edited by DamienD; 14 October 2020 at 20:54.
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