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Old 09 September 2015, 14:08   #21
Mrs Beanbag
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a decent "game creator" might result in a lot of cool stuff, although all creators are limited in various ways, i did plan on basically making an editor suite that works on the Mr Beanbag engine (beanbag creator) and expand on that, and also release the engine as a library and API, or maybe source code...

the idea of a games library/API for Amiga has also been mooted elsewhere. i think we could do a layered approach so that the "game creator" uses an engine that is also programmable directly, so there's a path of transition that people can follow if they wish, maybe even open-source the engine so people can tailor it to their needs if they feel brave.

but for now all i am working on is "structured ASM", basically asm with a lot of syntactic sugar, that compiles down to plain ASM that you can then assemble with Devpac.
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Old 09 September 2015, 14:18   #22
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Yes that would be the best idea, make a game full of features, such as various enemy patterns, timer, pop up messages, shake screen effects etc as seen in the best games, Shantae is a good example..

And then make an editor to change things on game such as hero attributes-frames, enemy attributes-frames, triggers for shake screen, pop up messages, change objects with other objects, map editor etc.
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Old 09 September 2015, 14:25   #23
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What sort of games do Amiga owners want to play? Each platforms user base tends to have a primary genre that works and some which just don't. What does our scene WANT?
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Old 09 September 2015, 14:31   #24
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What sort of games do Amiga owners want to play? Each platforms user base tends to have a primary genre that works and some which just don't. What does our scene WANT?
Metroidvania games for me. To make good Metroidvania games you need a good map editor (such as Tiled, or Mappy) that you can see the map zoomed out. In no way you can make these monster maps accurately with map editors like backbone..

Last edited by nobody; 09 September 2015 at 14:54.
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Old 09 September 2015, 14:44   #25
Mrs Beanbag
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yes indeed, a good map editor is essential, which is one reason i don't just release the editor i used to make Mr Beanbag, frankly it's an embarrassment... i drew some levels out on graph paper before creating them on the computer.

I also like platform games like Sonic &c, but also scrolling shoot-em-ups (vertical and horizontal) and platform shoot-em-ups like Metroid, Turrican &c, and platform-adventure games like Dizzy. All these games could share considerable code base.
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Old 09 September 2015, 14:56   #26
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Mappy and Tiled export map as a text file. Maybe you could use them and adapt the generated map format to your editor.
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Old 09 September 2015, 15:02   #27
Mrs Beanbag
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text-based map formats are very inconvenient for the Amiga, but a converter could be written, so people could design the maps on the PC, but i would produce a dev-suite that runs on Amiga. I do all my dev on original hardware where possible.
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Old 09 September 2015, 15:23   #28
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looking at the requirements of softwares sold for these machines one gets a pretty good idea of what to support: 1MB chip for the A500 and likely stock for the A1200
I can only agree. This is the common reference platform all indie developments should be based upon. Nothing else makes sense.
Working with limited hardware also has the advantage that game projects won't become too huge, and never finished.

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Here's what is needed: ONE really shining example of what is possible, and a lot of good developer documentation and open source code for people to study.
True. I admit that Solid Gold doesn't qualify as a shining example, but at least I tried to publish everything, with exactly this intention.

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Is 68k asm still really important for dev? In the pc/console market the compilers are so good its extremely unlikely that you can write better asm than the compiler can generate.
Yes, depending on the type of game, it is important. Fast action games absolutely need a fine tuned screen update routine in assembler, which distributes the work load between the CPU and the coprocessors.
Good assembler coders can always write better code than a compiler (especially on the M68k), provided they put sufficient time into a routine.

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but for now all i am working on is "structured ASM", basically asm with a lot of syntactic sugar, that compiles down to plain ASM that you can then assemble with Devpac.
Sounds interesting. Will you do it with macros or write a real compiler/translation unit?

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What sort of games do Amiga owners want to play? Each platforms user base tends to have a primary genre that works and some which just don't. What does our scene WANT?
I'm not sure what it wants, but Indie developments for the classic Amiga only make sense when we use its outstanding features, which made it strong: Copper, Blitter & Co. Trying to do 3D games is nonsense. It is neither fun to code nor would anybody want to play that on an Amiga.
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Old 09 September 2015, 15:33   #29
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Working with limited hardware also has the advantage that game projects won't become too huge, and never finished.
Well err err...

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Sounds interesting. Will you do it with macros or write a real compiler/translation unit?
it'll be more than macros, in fact i'll leave macros to the underlying assembler, first thing first is a hierarchical namespace structure (using curly braces, my favourite) and an easier way to track stuff you put on the stack.

so labels inside a block will get the label before the start of the block as a prefix. i won't go into too much detail here because it's off-topic and anything i write here may change by the time i actually implement it.
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Old 09 September 2015, 15:45   #30
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and support sales a minimum 4 to 5,000 copies 10 euros each
This is where the problem lies, the same one the A1200 case guys are facing. There are not thousands of active Amiga users queuing up for new products. There just aren't. A few hundred maybe, and many of those are passionate enough to pay a lot more than 10 euros, but people need to be realistic, it's not 1994.

Yes there are 10,000+ people in the Amiga Facebook groups, but the vast majority of those are casual and probably haven't owned an Amiga for decades. No commercial game would sell more than a couple of hundred copies, I am certain of that.

In fact we have some pretty reliable recent sales data to go on - the failed A1200 case kickstarter generated 77,000 euros from 454 backers, an average of 170 euros each. So as I said above, there are Amiga enthusiasts willing to spend money, but there are not that many of them. The average spend of their new kickstarter has increased to 182 euros, but it's still nowhere near enough to reach the goal as the extra people they are hoping to reach do not exist.

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Old 09 September 2015, 16:26   #31
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What about marketing to emulator users as well? Like with a specific strategy to grab em. I bet there are only a few hundred of us with Amiga hardware but I also bet you could dramatically increase that number if you pulled in all the Amiga forever users and win uae gamers
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Old 09 September 2015, 16:35   #32
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Yep or made it compilable on Android/iOS etc, massive market there.
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Old 09 September 2015, 17:34   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sephnroth View Post
What about marketing to emulator users as well? Like with a specific strategy to grab em. I bet there are only a few hundred of us with Amiga hardware but I also bet you could dramatically increase that number if you pulled in all the Amiga forever users and win uae gamers
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Yep or made it compilable on Android/iOS etc, massive market there.
My support libraries for tile mapping and sprite-based "sidebar screens" could fairly easily use OpenGL for graphics card support on operating systems that don't use the Amiga chipsets. Once I got that working, it will be a small matter to get that working on OpenGL-ES for the handhelds (assuming I do it right in the first place...) or even do the OpenGL-ES version first since I can test it on my RasPi2.
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Old 09 September 2015, 19:54   #34
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In fact we have some pretty reliable recent sales data to go on - the failed A1200 case kickstarter generated 77,000 euros from 454 backers, an average of 170 euros each. So as I said above, there are Amiga enthusiasts willing to spend money, but there are not that many of them. The average spend of their new kickstarter has increased to 182 euros, but it's still nowhere near enough to reach the goal as the extra people they are hoping to reach do not exist.
That is absolutelly correct.
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Old 09 September 2015, 20:48   #35
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That is absolutelly correct.
Correct, but also interesting..
If there were 454 people wanting a new A1200 case, then that means there or more A1200 owners than that (I have an A1200, but don't need a new case).
Also, that doesn't include many (will include some) of the A500 users..

Actually, when I look at that, I see a much larger potential audience than I initially thought...
Not thousands and thousands, but certainly more potential than 200...

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Old 09 September 2015, 20:54   #36
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77,000 for a new case for a1200 shows some serious potential that goes wasted.
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Old 09 September 2015, 20:55   #37
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I bet there are only a few hundred of us with Amiga hardware
Thousands, easily.
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77,000 for a new case for a1200 shows some serious potential that goes wasted.
Indeed
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the failed A1200 case kickstarter generated 77,000 euros from 454 backers
Considering it's for a wedge case I find that a lot, actually.

Last edited by Thorham; 09 September 2015 at 21:03.
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Old 09 September 2015, 20:55   #38
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I'm not sure that kickstarter is a great well to draw water from - i'm a BIG amiga fan and I'm not backing it simply because there isnt a price point for me. I'm not saying the prices are unfair but for a lot of people 80 euros is a lot for just a shell (twice what i paid for my a1200 and my a1200 came brilliant white! but that was a steal i'll accept :P), 150 if you want a different colour and 200 if you want some really nice colours (i do want the ghost shell, I just cant afford it!)

I like the update about keycaps thou - i'm sort of hoping some midrange backer options come in that give you more than a pack of screws that allow you to just get the keycaps and not the full shell - could do some amazing customisations

anyway, tangent! point is that market is very different to games. It takes a certain level of fandom to fork out high prices just for aesthetic reasons As an aside it doesnt negate the idea either - just saying it doesn't prove it.
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Old 09 September 2015, 21:14   #39
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anyway, tangent! point is that market is very different to games. It takes a certain level of fandom to fork out high prices just for aesthetic reasons As an aside it doesnt negate the idea either - just saying it doesn't prove it.
Not *just* for aesthetic reasons. First of all, the case brings some improvements, secondly, with the Amiga Reloaded board in the works ppl realize theyll need to get a case from somewhere..
For me its a matter of building another Amiga from mostly new parts. Ill keep my 23 year old config with genuine 060. But Ill also get a new mobo, new case, new keyboard, hopefully a FPGA accelerator and stuff like Gotek drives...
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Old 09 September 2015, 21:30   #40
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IMHO Cloanto is slowly killing Amiga retroscene...
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