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Old 13 January 2002, 12:35   #1
MethodGit
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Some rare stuff from me personally

Hey, all, just thought I'd introduce to you some particularly rare ADFs you're not likely to find on the web, and I'll upload them around the same time as well. A special gift from me, you might call it.

Some things here might very well interest the TOSEC guys...

I'll go through each thing one-by-one, starting off with:

1. James Pond Beta/Pre-Release
Cracked by: Oracle

What you see here is a beta/pre-release version of James Pond: Underwater Agent. I got it amongst a collection of (copied, manually labeled) disks we bought off someone years ago. As you can imagine with beta versions, this game is quite buggy. Most times when you try to start the game again, it can crash. Cheat keys are enabled from the start, try finding out which key does what. Back then I didn't even know this was a beta, I thought it was the actual game as it was released! Hey, I was, like, only 9/10 back then? I remember trying to use Amiga Format's James Pond tips (from one of their tips books, which I still have with me) with this game, and getting confused as to why most things didn't apply! This early version is in AmigaDOS format, compared to the final version's NDOS format.

The game should be in the Zone right now.
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Old 13 January 2002, 13:25   #2
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A james pond more buggy than the released one? Wow. The one I have have got plenty of bugs including graphics bugs and random dying bugs.
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Old 13 January 2002, 13:44   #3
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@Drake: you're sure your James Pond is even the final version? Is it an original or cracked? AFAIK I found no problems with the real version when I played it under WinUAE and WinFellow a while ago.

Anyhow, onto the next surprise :

2. Over The Net
Original, commercial release

You may often see a cracked version of this 1991 volleyball game published by Genias (don't know who developed it, was it Genias again?), however this is the original uncracked version which I remember I definitely bought some time after the game's initial release (it wasn't in '91, I think it was two or three years later?), and it became a Chrimbo pressie.

I tested the ADF and it seems to be 100% fine to me (after all I managed to grab the screenshots below without problems ), but I haven't tested every single feature in the game yet, so if you come across any problems with any particular bit in the game, let me know.

Anyone know if this game ever had a copylock (I don't think it does really, as I didn't come across any problems)? In fact, is there a list anywhere on the web that lists all Amiga games known to have protection schemes of any kind?

This game should also be the Zone.

Who knows, if any of the WHDLoad team are interested in fixing this game for HD-consumption, they can use this ADF if they want.
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Old 13 January 2002, 13:49   #4
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Why won't the pic show properly when I look at the page? The pic's in PNG format, less than 102400 bytes, so I don't see what's wrong.

Edit: doesn't matter now, I altered the image a bit.
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Old 13 January 2002, 14:41   #5
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Upload it again.
(edit your post > upload a new file)

you should use GIF.
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Old 13 January 2002, 16:11   #6
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Nope, still having problems.

Before, with the PNG file, it performed differently under IE and Opera:
IE - the picture simply wouldn't display at all. It would show the little X in the corner meaning it didn't load.
Opera - you could vaguely see the picture, but it seems "airbrushed" randomly over with sand-like effects, if Opera users see what I mean.

And with the GIF file:
IE - it only loads the top part of the picture and stops. When you try to save it it comes out as "untitled.bmp".
Opera - well, it's virtually behaving the same way as with PNG. And bizarrely, it thinks I'm still using the PNG picture. Is my post not using GIF? Is it possible for you to check, RCK?

Could the problems have something to do with the fact that it's quite big? The image shows six screenshots.
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Old 13 January 2002, 17:04   #7
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The problem with opera is it's cache procedure.
(change File > Preferences > History & cache > Verify Modif = always, always, always).

After, the problem is that your file is corrupted, don't know why.
maybe from your side,
maybe from your upload.

Try to upload again one JPG file this time.
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Old 13 January 2002, 17:12   #8
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Marz, to begin with, the resolution of your pics is too wide. It forces us to have to scroll to see it all. You should use the standard format we always post game pics with (two 320w images=640w). You can still cram six images on there, I suppose, but constrict your width to 640 pixels so it fits.

IE has a bug that they will never fix where it randomly thinks pics are bmp format, so you just have to live with that.

The reason Opera probably still thinks the image is a PNG file is more than likely because the PNG file is still in your cache. I am using Opera and it tells me that it's a GIF file. That should have been the first thing you thought of, really.

Over the Net was released in Europe by Genias, in the US by Merit, and was developed by Dardari Brothers. Its release date was 1990.

At Codetapper's site, there is a Rob Northen interview that lists most of the RNC games (at least the ones Rob remembers or the ones that were created in-house). I can't believe you didn't know this was here, considering how immersed you appear to be in the whole WHD genre.
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Old 13 January 2002, 19:28   #9
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Could it be something to do with progressive images? First time I loaded the page (when the image was a gif), I got a flash of every few lines of the pic, like you see when an image is decoding.
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Old 13 January 2002, 20:22   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Twistin' Ghost
IE has a bug that they will never fix where it randomly thinks pics are bmp format, so you just have to live with that.
The reason for this is because they ARE bitmaps, IE partially downloads the file to examine the header and determine the file type, it's why sometimes you have that short pause before the download window is shown.

It appears random because it's not often people rename their bitmaps with a .jpg extension.

To prove this, upload a bitmap with a .jpg extension or vice versa and attempt to download it.
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Old 13 January 2002, 20:28   #11
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It doesn't seem to matter now, I cut two screenshots off the image (not in a very professional way though, I just ran the game again and captured some new grabs ), and it seems to work okay now.

[QUOTE]Originally posted by Twistin' Ghost
Quote:
Marz, to begin with, the resolution of your pics is too wide. It forces us to have to scroll to see it all.
What resolution are you using? AFAIK the higher the resolution, the less likely you need to scroll across the page.

Quote:
You should use the standard format we always post game pics with (two 320w images=640w).
I could, but I feel that some parts of the game garner grabs of their own...

Quote:
You can still cram six images on there, I suppose, but constrict your width to 640 pixels so it fits.
Yeah, maybe I should've done it in a vertical way.... should I change it again, or is it okay as it is?

Quote:
IE has a bug that they will never fix where it randomly thinks pics are bmp format, so you just have to live with that.
Hurry! If we flame Microsoft about the problem, they might just give in and sort it out...

Quote:
The reason Opera probably still thinks the image is a PNG file is more than likely because the PNG file is still in your cache. I am using Opera and it tells me that it's a GIF file. That should have been the first thing you thought of, really.
I've sorted out the cache options in Opera now.

Quote:
Over the Net was released in Europe by Genias, in the US by Merit, and was developed by Dardari Brothers. Its release date was 1990.
Where did you get this info from, I wonder?

Quote:
At Codetapper's site, there is a Rob Northen interview that lists most of the RNC games (at least the ones Rob remembers or the ones that were created in-house). I can't believe you didn't know this was here, considering how immersed you appear to be in the whole WHD genre.
Is it a complete list, though?

@žane: okay, but GIFs can't be bitmaps surely?
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Old 14 January 2002, 01:20   #12
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Smile Okay, onto gift number three...

3. Dune II: The Battle For Arrakis
Original, commercial, uncracked version

Well, what can I say? This could well be the sole strategy game that inspired Westwood to create Command & Conquer (which itself would become a strategy gaming icon) and beyond. This is uncracked, but I think there's a manual protection bit after you complete the first level, so that could be a major problem if you want to play the whole game.

Do any of the hackers on here (Codetapper, Amigaboy, Galahad etc.) know if it's possible to manually hack the manual protection out of the game with just a hex editor (like with Wizball and its disk protection)?

I checked all the disks (all files seem to be working and copyable, except for the following one) and only SAVEFAME.DAT on Disk 4 reports a checksum error when you try to copy it somewhere. I'm not sure if it's just my copy or it happens with all known copies, but it's not a major priority anyway, you can still play the game in general.

In the Zone as you finish reading this.

N.B. sometimes this game is also known as Dune II: Building Of A Dynasty (not sure if this is the console title or something else).
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Old 14 January 2002, 01:50   #13
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Well

How are any of these considered rare?
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Old 14 January 2002, 02:20   #14
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Re: Well

Quote:
Originally posted by Mangar
How are any of these considered rare?
That is a good question
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Old 14 January 2002, 02:42   #15
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They're rare in that you can't download these babies from the internet (and before anyone blabs "Hey, Dune 2's too commonly available on the web", I mean you can't download an *uncracked* version anywhere can you?), obviously!
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Old 14 January 2002, 03:42   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by žane
The reason for this is because they ARE bitmaps, IE partially downloads the file to examine the header and determine the file type, it's why sometimes you have that short pause before the download window is shown.

It appears random because it's not often people rename their bitmaps with a .jpg extension.

To prove this, upload a bitmap with a .jpg extension or vice versa and attempt to download it.
I am just gonna have to disagree with that completely. I have downloaded pics from websites here at work and have IE save them as BMP, and then go home and re-download the same exact file and it be in the correct gif or jpg format. And not only is IE clueless as to what the file format is in such cases, it can't even discern the name of the file, meaning that everytime this happens, you are left with Untitled.bmp When this happens, I can open the source and see that the pic indeed has a name and proper extension. I could understand if there was some unique thing in the jpeg header that IE may not be familiar with, but it is able to display it. And why would IE just 'lose' the filename, while Netscape and Opera neither have a problem with either?
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Old 14 January 2002, 04:03   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by MarzAttakz
What resolution are you using? AFAIK the higher the resolution, the less likely you need to scroll across the page.
Well, that isn't an opinion, it's a fact. I daresay my resolution is more than likely higher than yours is. Normally my display is 1280x720, but since I have to temporarily use a different monitor, I am at a mere 1024x768. So I should bump my screen resolution up higher because you would rather post ultra wide pics? And so should everybody else?

Quote:
Originally posted by MarzAttakz
me: You should use the standard format we always post game pics with (two 320w images=640w).
I could, but I feel that some parts of the game garner grabs of their own...
?!? Do you mind translating that into English. Erm, never mind. Regardless of what you are trying (failing) to say here, I have never seen a game screenshot that cannot be reduced to a width of 320 pixels.

Quote:
Originally posted by MarzAttakz
me:Over the Net was released in Europe by Genias, in the US by Merit, and was developed by Dardari Brothers. Its release date was 1990.
Where did you get this info from, I wonder?
?!?! What difference does that make? I think you asked me this once before and I told you then that I don't keep a database of where I get my info from. Either trust it or don't trust it. This info is not very hard to find out. In fact I just answered a similar question in a different thread. Sheesh! And for the record, I have an original of this game, as well, so maybe my info came from the manual? Maybe I should research where I got my info from? Sorry if I sound like a smart-ass here, but I cannot fathom why you would question where I get my info from. If you care to challenge it and find an error, I welcome that. At least that is constructive.

Quote:
Originally posted by MarzAttakz
me:At Codetapper's site, there is a Rob Northen interview that lists most of the RNC games (at least the ones Rob remembers or the ones that were created in-house). I can't believe you didn't know this was here, considering how immersed you appear to be in the whole WHD genre.
Is it a complete list, though?
READ!!! Read my quote above and you will see the word MOST. Read the interview at Codetapper's site and see what it says about the games listed there. It says there that the list in complete. Any caveats are outlined in parenthesis in my quote above.

Honestly, I have never had to interpret my own post in quotes before. I suppose I asked for it by trying to help, but still...I need a tranquilizer!
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Old 14 January 2002, 04:21   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by Twistin' Ghost

...I need a tranquilizer!
Rolling On The Floor Laughing !!
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Old 14 January 2002, 04:47   #19
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The reason you cannot find games like DUNE II uncracked all over the net is because most prefer having the cracked version. Only a few who like to have original images of a specific game or guys like the WHDload team have a use for them. If they are requested then I can see a point. Otherwise we could all upload copies of all our originals.

See if you can find anything in your collection that is not readily available in either form. Stuff like burseg is sending up.

The James Pond Pre-release is nice. Find more stuff like that.
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Old 14 January 2002, 12:43   #20
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Marz, I don't want to sound too critical, but I have downloaded both James Pond beta and Dune 2 (yes, the original version) before from this very site!. You can hardly call them particularly rare if they have been uploaded before by other board members .
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