Tuesday, 18 September 2018

RetroChallenge 2018/09: Atari Adventure in BASIC Beta Release

The following video shows a walkthrough to an ordinary win of a game played at level 3. But there is also an easter egg to figure out, which will be reported on the final screen if you succeed in that task. Hope I have got all the essential elements in place and that the code is as efficient as possible.  I might place a limit of three on the number of times you can be killed before you "fail in your quest."  Right now the game seems a little too forgiving.

I have been adding lots of tweaks to the bat routine to make it run as quickly as possible in the background. Still, you will notice an occasional pause of your avatar as the bat filches something from a room off screen. Occasionally this will result in something, including dragons, being dropped into your current screen.

Now when you get eaten, you respawn without the item you were carrying. It is randomly placed in the room where you were killed.

The sound is minimal. We'll see if my son Charlie can suggest or come up with any interesting additions. Not sure if it is a very exciting game, but it is an interesting exercise as least in creating a virtual world in BASIC. Quite proud at how the mazes turned out and that I was able to cram them into a 20K MC-10.  

What's missing?

The magnet. My  random item placement routine doesn't put objects where they can't be reached. This effect would simply have slowed the game too much, and I wasn't convinced it was a particularly significant part of the game play. Maybe there is another element or item that can be added in its place to add complexity?

Complex Behaviour. Robinett was quite proud of the complex interrelationships between objects. In variations of the game the objects affect each other differently (attracting/repelling). A bit too much to render in BASIC without slowing things down terribly. In my version dragons just attack, bats swoop in and then out. And there can only be one enemy on screen at a time. Yet I think I have come as close as possible within the limits of BASIC to present the essence of the game.

Dead Bodies. There are no dead dragons lying around where you slayed'em. Just a little blood from your sword. I might still add an upside down dragon death scene. My code cleaning has turned up some extra space for flourishes to be added.

Well my semester is heating up now so I'm not sure I will post much else. This is where I hoped to reach in this particular project. Good luck to everyone else doing the RetroChallenge!

Link to WAV file for any folks who might want to play it on an original machine: https://drive.google.com/open?id=157VTdjQI6HQUsQIHJgLXhncQoZEYfuVf
Or it can be played on a Javascript emulator here: http://faculty.cbu.ca/jgerrie/MC10/JG_MC10.html

1 comment:

  1. This is great - could you also please include a source listing in plain text?
    (For those of us who would like to try porting it to other computers.)