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Old 20 September 2013, 02:21   #361
dlfrsilver
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i have my own hint about why it was average : Very easy, aside the development systems they used for coding on the consoles, they had custom mapper tools which were running on the target platform, meaning that in parallel with the code, they could visualize, create and position the graphics directly on screen. With this method, you get the best, because since the graphic/mapper tool is visual, you can make thing, test them, and correct them directly. With a tool like this on amiga, much more complex games could have been made within the amiga limitations, only the coding and music would have remained to polish after.

All the arcade games (hear coin-op games) were made with game design assisted tools.
example : the Toaplan GX010 mapper/sprites design and game design conceptor running on X68000 machines.

Our developers never had such professional tool to make games in europe back in the day.
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Old 20 September 2013, 11:21   #362
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Originally Posted by dlfrsilver View Post
i have my own hint about why it was average : Very easy, aside the development systems they used for coding on the consoles, they had custom mapper tools which were running on the target platform, meaning that in parallel with the code, they could visualize, create and position the graphics directly on screen. With this method, you get the best, because since the graphic/mapper tool is visual, you can make thing, test them, and correct them directly. With a tool like this on amiga, much more complex games could have been made within the amiga limitations, only the coding and music would have remained to polish after.

All the arcade games (hear coin-op games) were made with game design assisted tools.
example : the Toaplan GX010 mapper/sprites design and game design conceptor running on X68000 machines.

Our developers never had such professional tool to make games in europe back in the day.
In a word.....rubbish.

Most of the major development teams would have had their own custom map creating tools, and lots of them used cross development systems as well.

Binary Emotions were small fish in the grand scheme of things, we had custom map making tools, to suggest the likes of Ocean, Teque, Bitmap Brothers et all didn't is frankly bizarre.
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Old 20 September 2013, 11:38   #363
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None of these editors allowed complex game design. When i see the GX010 editor, and compare with the editors shown back in the day in the magazines for amiga, there's a huge gap.

That's why many had a sort of amateur or semi-pro feel on screen.
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Old 20 September 2013, 13:51   #364
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I think one of the issues with platformers on the Amiga is, and let's be honest here - Up should not be jump on a strict platformer.

Turrican was programmed with this in mind and made the jumps more tailored to an "Up = jump" standard... and did it beautifully. But Turrican is a run-n-gun more than a platformer and so doesn't count for this exercise.

I haven't really played a straight up platformer yet that I enjoyed on the miggy although I've yet to try Superfrog.

Games with platforms that are essentially other types of games though? Brilliant. Rodland, Bubble Bobble, Turrican in a way... all awesome on the miggy. But until I see a jump button for a platformer... no dice.
This up to jump thing being a problem I see quite a lot from people but how is it a problem?! It quite simply is not, it's only a problem if you were weened on Consoles first that used a button to jump, and for me because I played mostly on "Computer" games where up was jump, I found that when I tried a Console game where fire was jump that it was very annoying.

It's not that a button to jump is better, it's just that it's what you are conditioned with. Nothing more nothing less.
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Old 20 September 2013, 14:07   #365
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Originally Posted by dlfrsilver View Post
None of these editors allowed complex game design. When i see the GX010 editor, and compare with the editors shown back in the day in the magazines for amiga, there's a huge gap.

That's why many had a sort of amateur or semi-pro feel on screen.
I don't know what you are talking about because when I google for what you are talking about, all that comes up is this thread.
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Old 20 September 2013, 14:10   #366
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It's not that a button to jump is better, it's just that it's what you are conditioned with. Nothing more nothing less.
Up to jump is fine on joysticks, which is what most people used on the Amiga and other home computers. The sort of joypads you started getting on consoles, however, are an entirely different matter.

Also a lot of joystick designs can't really accommodate multiple buttons.
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Old 20 September 2013, 14:55   #367
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Originally Posted by Adropac2 View Post
anyone else here read through their own comments sometimes and realise they've basically written a load of rubbish. I do

EVERYTIME!!

I always think I'm being insightful at the time of writing them, then I go back and read them and realise I'm spouting rubbish again.


Thank the lord, for the edit button
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Old 20 September 2013, 16:55   #368
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EVERYTIME!!

I always think I'm being insightful at the time of writing them, then I go back and read them and realise I'm spouting rubbish again.


Thank the lord, for the edit button
Well I suppose self deprecation is a virtue, I'm always saying stuff that makes me sound like a dick, could be worse, you could be a politician and be paid for it
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Old 20 September 2013, 18:18   #369
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Originally Posted by Mrs Beanbag View Post
I don't know what you are talking about because when I google for what you are talking about, all that comes up is this thread.
indeed, i got since i'm a member of the dumping union (Mame), access to a download of the toaplan scanned documents of development for coin-op games. (it's a part of the Toaplan shooting battles double CD collector, which cost an arm to buy). Inside, there are 2 editors with the confidential/secret seal. It shows the 1st editor, which is runing on a Sony BMC-777 japanese computer, and the second called GX010, running on an X68000 computer.

Between the GX010 editor and the editors used to make games, there is a huge gap. I'll try to post some pages (the PDF document i have is HUGE and it's also protected).
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Old 21 September 2013, 11:06   #370
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I'd agree that the vast majority of Amiga platformers are medicore compared with console platformers.

It boils down to a few reasons:
1) Lack of Japanese industry interest
2) The one button Joystick being so popular
3) Rampant piracy making the system unappealing to develop for (read the lionheart in-game info for details)
4) Inferior technical specs to 16-bit consoles developed 1988 and onwards (Mega drive, Snes)
5) Developers shoving unpolished games out of the door

In addition all the much touted big platformer names on Amiga had huge glaring holes that made them almost unplayable:

Superfrog - No parallax, annoying as hell music, twitchy controls, cheap deaths
Kid Chaos - Terrible rave music, god awful main character
Zool - No ability to have sfx and music at the same time. Crap music on top
Lionheart - That tiny has hell sword and kick made killing enemies needlessly tedious and frustrating
Bubble And Squeak - AGA version ruined with bugged AI. Non AGA has no backgrounds (no excuse for this)
Turrican - When compared with Mega Turrican with it's lush Effects, lovely parallax, playability with three button pad, Amiga Turrican looks and feels like turd.

Some of these might seem like minor issues but the 16-bit consoles were getting this kind of simple shit right every time. There's no excuse for the lack of polish and thought in Amiga platformers.

Quote:
it's only a problem if you were weened on Consoles first that used a button to jump, and for me because I played mostly on "Computer" games where up was jump, I found that when I tried a Console game where fire was jump that it was very annoying.
I'm sorry but that's simply not true. I grew up on the up for jump joystick games. My first console was a Megadrive and the very first time I used button C for jump it was huge breath of fresh air. Up for jump just sucks, no matter how you look at it.

Last edited by john1979; 21 September 2013 at 11:12.
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Old 21 September 2013, 13:21   #371
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1) You know japanese never had amiga widely available on market (if available at all) so that's no suprise. On japanese market at that time ruled Sharp and Fujitsu.

2) I know, one button sucks but many amiga joysticks had two just developers rarely use them.

3) Common problem of all diskette based system not just amiga.

4) Amiga hardware was from 1985, megadrive from 1988 and SNES form 1990 so also not suprise. I understand lower hardware than consoles just I don't understand why Commodore didn't created new model for example from 1988 do 1991.

5) There many poor games also on Megadrive and SNES. Besides I think Sega and Nintendo at least partially controlled quality. After all they manufactured all cartidges. As for computers anyone could publish on it's own.

BTW. Joystick was always much better than pad. I even buy Quickshot joysticks for Megadrive and SNES and NES.


As for games:

Superfrog was great, for me better than Sonic

Kid Chaos was very hard platformer with good graphics and mediocre music but still was really good game.

As for Zool and many other games - problem with ver limited audio chipset. But I still think that 99% amiga conversion had better music than console version, especially when compare to Megadrive, for example are Core Design and Psygnosis games.

Lionheart was great game, no flaws for me. This one was even HD friendly.

Bubble And Squeak was ok. Music was much better on amiga.

Turrican was better on amiga. Megadrive port was very poor.
The same situation was with second part rebranded as Universal Soldier.
Only third part was better on Megadrive (besides music) beacuse was written for megadrive in first place. To bad that megadrive version wasn't converted for A1200. I would be fantastic port.

Last edited by haynor666; 21 September 2013 at 13:31.
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Old 21 September 2013, 13:52   #372
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Gamepad > Joystick.
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Old 21 September 2013, 14:05   #373
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Superfrog was great, for me better than Sonic
It was terrible. It did so many things much worse than Sonic. This post from earlier sums it up perfectly:

Quote:
Floaty controls, aimless level design, spikes that kill you instantly at the slightest touch regardless of how many hit points you have, unkillable enemies with no indication that they are such, straightaways that encourage Sonic-style running but end in more spikes, absolutely atrocious jumping controls, excessive backtracking, and very annoying music.
Quote:
Kid Chaos was very hard platformer with good graphics and mediocre music but still was really good game.
I would say it was average at best, it was a good demo of what could be done on A500 hardware but the gameplay was boring, the music sucked and the main character was so unlikeable it made you not want to play.

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As for Zool and many other games - problem with ver limited audio chipset.
Having three channels for music and one for SFX is perfectly doable. The sound hardware was limiting, but developers used that as an excuse not to even bother. Turrican, Lionheart and many others proved music and SFX were perfectly doable at the same time. Paula was perfectly capable of acceptable game audio.

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But I still think that 99% amiga conversion had better music than console version, especially when compare to Megadrive, for example are Core Design and Psygnosis games.
Do you mean arcade conversions? Most console conversions were a helluva lot better than the Amiga counterparts.

Quote:
Turrican was better on amiga. Megadrive port was very poor.
Megdrive Turrican was not a port, Turrican 3 was actually developed primarly for the MD.

What makes you say the Amiga version was better? Mega Turrican's music was easily on par if not better than the Amiga counterpart, the controls were better (especially for the rope swing), the graphics were tons better.

Quote:
1) You know japanese never had amiga widely available on market (if available at all) so that's no suprise. On japanese market at that time ruled Sharp and Fujitsu.
No surprise but it is one of the reasons why platformers are mediocre on the Amiga

Quote:
3) Common problem of all diskette based system not just amiga.
I never said it wasn't. Doesn't make the rampant piracy on the Amiga any less of a bitter pill to swallow.

Quote:
4) Amiga hardware was from 1985, megadrive from 1988 and SNES form 1990 so also not suprise. I understand lower hardware than consoles just I don't understand why Commodore didn't created new model for example from 1988 do 1991.
Their cost cutting gave rise to AGA, and the same blitter speed as an 1985 A500. Pretty inexcusable.

Quote:
5) There many poor games also on Megadrive and SNES. Besides I think Sega and Nintendo at least partially controlled quality. After all they manufactured all cartidges. As for computers anyone could publish on it's own.
Talking specifically about the platformers, Megadrive/SNES has a much higher ratio of good games to bad ones. There are bad ones sure, but the Amiga is full of bad ones, with hardly any really good ones.
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Old 21 September 2013, 14:24   #374
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Ok, many games has sfx and music. That was possible but for a price of music quality. For example Superfrog uses 3 channels for music and 1 for sfx.

I was referring to first Turrican (released later on Megadrive, ported by Ballistic). Mega Turrican was indeed better on SMD than Turrican 3 but only if we compare graphics. Audio WAS worse on SMD (I hate that converted music), gameplay identical (I ended Turrican 3, but I played Mega Turrican only first world so this might be innacurate). The only difference was grapling hook which was on SMD easier to use (more buttons).

For conversions I'm referring only for audio. As for graphics Megadrive and SNES were better. But that's not suprise - newer hardware. On the other hand PC Engine had even better ports than Megadrive.

And yes, consoles has better ratio of good games. But that explains partially my previous post: "Besides I think Sega and Nintendo at least partially controlled quality. After all they manufactured all cartidges. As for computers anyone could publish on it's own."
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Old 21 September 2013, 15:27   #375
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Originally Posted by john1979 View Post
Superfrog - No parallax, annoying as hell music, twitchy controls, cheap deaths
Kid Chaos - Terrible rave music, god awful main character
Zool - No ability to have sfx and music at the same time. Crap music on top
Lionheart - That tiny has hell sword and kick made killing enemies needlessly tedious and frustrating
Bubble And Squeak - AGA version ruined with bugged AI. Non AGA has no backgrounds (no excuse for this)
Turrican - When compared with Mega Turrican with it's lush Effects, lovely parallax, playability with three button pad, Amiga Turrican looks and feels like turd...
...I'm sorry but that's simply not true. I grew up on the up for jump joystick games. My first console was a Megadrive and the very first time I used button C for jump it was huge breath of fresh air. Up for jump just sucks, no matter how you look at it.
You might want to think again before making such bold statements. Your personal experiences are not equal to the absolute truth. Lots of people feel exactly the opposite way you do.
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Old 21 September 2013, 15:31   #376
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Tiny knife we had in Green Beret, I think in Lionheart was just ok.
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Old 21 September 2013, 16:16   #377
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4) Inferior technical specs to 16-bit consoles developed 1988 and onwards (Mega drive, Snes)
Not really an excuse for poorly designed games, since there were plenty of good games on Master System and NES. Great Giana Sisters, beloved though it is, is quite a poor copy of Super Mario Brothers.
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Old 21 September 2013, 16:25   #378
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Inferior technical specs to 16-bit consoles developed 1988 and onwards (Mega drive, Snes)
And of course only partly true. The hardware is never the indicator for quality games though. The polished Amiga games are still good, they aged well. If you don't like Turrican 1-2, Fire and Ice or Lionheart, well then you never liked them at all.

Ridiculous to generalise the superiority of console games. You also find gazillions of crappy console platformer on consoles, besides the classics from Sega, Nintendo, Konami, Capcom.

Last edited by Retro-Nerd; 21 September 2013 at 16:32.
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Old 21 September 2013, 16:25   #379
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You might want to think again before making such bold statements. Your personal experiences are not equal to the absolute truth. Lots of people feel exactly the opposite way you do.
Err, this is a thread entirely full of opinion. What I said I feel is true (otherwise it wouldn't be my opinion would it!) and I said it strongly because I felt strongly, YMMV. You can call me out on it but make sure you do everybody else who has posted first. Have fun counting everybody else in this thread who also made bold statements

Quote:
Originally Posted by haynor
Ok, many games has sfx and music. That was possible but for a price of music quality. For example Superfrog uses 3 channels for music and 1 for sfx.
Yes but a small price at that, 3 channels can give a perfectly good tune. I see the C64 crowd getting less upset about the lack of channels than the Amiga gamers do. The fault was just bad decisions/lazyness by the developers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by haynor
Audio WAS worse on SMD (I hate that converted music), gameplay identical (I ended Turrican 3, but I played Mega Turrican only first world so this might be innacurate). The only difference was grapling hook which was on SMD easier to use (more buttons).
There was nothing converted about the music in Mega Turrican. Again, Mega Turrican was not a port of Turrican 3. I'm not sure what you don't like about the music on the MD? It sounds crystal clear, fantastic for the chip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by haynor
And yes, consoles has better ratio of good games. But that explains partially my previous post: "Besides I think Sega and Nintendo at least partially controlled quality. After all they manufactured all cartidges. As for computers anyone could publish on it's own."
But you didn't mention that ratio difference specifically, which I felt was not telling the whole story.
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Old 21 September 2013, 16:33   #380
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And of course only partly true. The hardware is never the indicator for quality games though.
I never said it was. However the better specs coupled with good gameplay allowed for an overall better experience than what was on the Amiga.

For platformer games specifically, how is saying the Megadrive or Snes did not have better hardware for that task is only "partly true"?

I think it is entirely true.

Quote:
The polished Amiga games are still good, they aged well. If you don't like Turrican 1-2, Fire and Ice or Lionheart, well then you never liked them at all.
I do like those games, they are okay. But I wouldn't try to stack them against good platformers on the consoles.

Quote:
You also find gazillions of crappy console platformer on consoles
Gazillions? I think that's an exaggeration to put it lightly. In the NES days sure there were many bad ones. But the ratio was much much better in the 16bit era. Unfortunately the Amiga did not fair so well.
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