Author Topic: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!  (Read 92832 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline VincentGR

  • 6128 Plus
  • ******
  • Posts: 1.252
  • Country: gr
    • Parts from the past.
  • Liked: 731
  • Likes Given: 1840
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #575 on: 19:57, 09 October 19 »
Finally today I setup permanently my CPC.
Well if I know one game in my life, then this is it.


Colours are very very similar to the Amiga if they are both on a CRT TV, don't let emulators fool you.
BG fixed a cute bug that was on the Amiga.
When you hold down arrow and let it go before the ball touched the spring, the ball was still ejected.
There is no such thing on the CPC.
I see minor differences that are not related to the main gameplay core like for instance when the ball sits on that triangle bumper reacts better on the CPC.


Also Rhino constructed a Blitter in software if you know what I mean  :o
« Last Edit: 21:54, 09 October 19 by VincentGR »
Visit my BBS (Telnet) : flashbackbbs.sytes.net:6502
http://loaderror.eu/
Amiga 1200 Black Project

Offline Rhino

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 291
  • Liked: 870
  • Likes Given: 366
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #576 on: 00:38, 10 October 19 »

A man who admits something is a true man not an idiot.
Just to add to what VincentGR said that I have to admit that there were times when I also had doubts about the feasibility of the project, so I think your reaction was natural and sincere, which is something to be thankful for :)

Offline Rhino

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 291
  • Liked: 870
  • Likes Given: 366
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #577 on: 00:43, 10 October 19 »
I'd like to ask @Rhino about the BG logo animation at the beginning, as I'm mesmerized by how fluent it is.
You could say it's our old CRTC running some 3D CRTC-FX hehe  :D

Offline VincentGR

  • 6128 Plus
  • ******
  • Posts: 1.252
  • Country: gr
    • Parts from the past.
  • Liked: 731
  • Likes Given: 1840
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #578 on: 10:33, 10 October 19 »
There you go on the real beast.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCA6psxb-7U
Visit my BBS (Telnet) : flashbackbbs.sytes.net:6502
http://loaderror.eu/
Amiga 1200 Black Project

Offline chinnyhill10

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 1.387
  • Country: 00
    • https://www.youtube.com/user/chinnyhill10
  • Liked: 767
  • Likes Given: 522
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #579 on: 22:25, 10 October 19 »
--
ChinnyVision - Reviews Of Classic Games Using Original Hardware
chinnyhill10 - YouTube

Offline Nich

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 746
  • Country: gb
  • CPC Game Reviews webmaster
    • CPC Game Reviews
  • Liked: 641
  • Likes Given: 759
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #580 on: 13:29, 12 October 19 »
Just released this.

I'd love to know what your rationale is for stating that the CPC has no hardware scrolling (fast forward to 3:31 in the video). ::)

EDIT: Immediately after posting this, I noticed the video response below from @chinnyhill10 on YouTube. I am not convinced by his arguments.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFG-u4DyhL4
« Last Edit: 13:54, 12 October 19 by Nich »

Offline chinnyhill10

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 1.387
  • Country: 00
    • https://www.youtube.com/user/chinnyhill10
  • Liked: 767
  • Likes Given: 522
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #581 on: 15:03, 12 October 19 »
I'd love to know what your rationale is for stating that the CPC has no hardware scrolling (fast forward to 3:31 in the video). ::)

EDIT: Immediately after posting this, I noticed the video response below from @chinnyhill10 on YouTube. I am not convinced by his arguments.



If the CPC has hardware scrolling as most general users would understand it, why would Amstrad bother to build hardware scrolling as general users would understand it into the Plus?


Nobody on a C64 ever had to write their own scrolling routine did they? While we know there is LIMITED ability to do certain things, nobody else actually cares because all they see is jerky scrolling, games that scroll 8 pixels at a time or that effect where everything pauses while the screen scrolls smoothly at 50fps as you see in Roland In The Caves, Rig Attack, etc.


I know I'll be doubled down on, but I don't actually care. All I'm concerned with is presenting Pinball Dreams as the best possible game doing marvellous things and by very talented coders on a platform that should not be able to do this stuff if you followed the rulebook. If people want a CPC superuser echo chamber, my channel isn't it. You have to talk to a wider audience in terms they understand.

As regards Pinball Dreams, why I am trying to say is "The laws of aerodynamics say the bumblebee cannot fly, but it can."

That's my last word on the matter.
« Last Edit: 15:17, 12 October 19 by chinnyhill10 »
--
ChinnyVision - Reviews Of Classic Games Using Original Hardware
chinnyhill10 - YouTube

Offline robcfg

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 2.337
  • Country: se
  • 8-Bit Technomancer
    • index.php?action=treasury
  • Liked: 1043
  • Likes Given: 2515
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #582 on: 15:18, 12 October 19 »
Hi @chinnyhill10 !


I don´t understand what your rant's about, but for me, the CPC clearly has hardware scrolling, as the CRTC chip does hardware scrolling.


Limited, yes. Not so easy to use, yes. But definitely there. MSX1 has also jerky character scrolling. And I bet that most C64 users didn't know or care about the hardware scroll capabilities as most just used to play with it and not to code complex stuff. And the C64 and MSX are know also for the wild hacks they do.


Also, all hardware scrolls come with tradeoffs. In that sense the CPC is not different.


I get that the hardware scroll capabilities where not in the mind of the CPC designers, but again, the CRTC allows for it.


I'd like to point out that the problem of different revisions of chips is not Amstrad exclusive. Atari had several revisions of the CTIA and GTIA chips on the same computer models, so programmers had to check for them too.


On the PCW side of things, ironically, the CPC has a more text-oriented display as the PCW. On the CPC, the video memory is organized in character block rows, while on the PCW it is linear bitmapped, so actually it's easier to write a game on the PCW. Not to mention the roller ram which in conjunction with the massive amount of memory, allows for nice scrolls. As with the CPC, most probably this is an unintended consequence of the design.


Finally, on why this wonderful developments where not possible at the time, there are several factors. One is the commercial release schedule. Come on! Two weeks to port R-Type? That gives time for nothing. Take away that pressure and you see what could have been done.

Another one is documentation access. Now you only have to type 6845 Datasheet on Google to get it, while I don't know how I would have obtained that back in the days.

I cannot see the intensive use of the CRTC as a hack. People know the chip much more in detail than in the 80´s and take advantage of what can do.


There's no magic to it, only hard work, dedication and inspiration.


Edit:
Quote
As regards Pinball Dreams, why I am trying to say is "The laws of aerodynamics say the bumblebee cannot fly, but it can."
Turns out, the Bumblebee is not breaking any physics law, it's just people didn't understand what was happening there...


Edit 2:
One last thing. It's impossible to fill the whole screen using software, because of the size of the video memory and the speed of execution. Without hardware scrolling Pinball Dreams would not work. That is the demonstration that the CPC has indeed hardware scrolling. It's not Amiga/Megadrive hardware scroll, but it is definitely hardware scroll.
« Last Edit: 15:37, 12 October 19 by robcfg »

Offline ivarf

  • 6128 Plus
  • ******
  • Posts: 565
  • Country: no
  • Liked: 176
  • Likes Given: 328
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #583 on: 16:03, 12 October 19 »
There you go on the real beast.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCA6psxb-7U


Amazing how much better it looks on a real Amstrad CRT. Thank you!

Offline TMR

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 195
  • Country: gb
  • Beeping the horn on the data bus
    • JasonKelk.me.uk
  • Liked: 128
  • Likes Given: 40
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #584 on: 19:52, 12 October 19 »
Nobody on a C64 ever had to write their own scrolling routine did they?
Sorry Chinny, they did write their own routines and indeed still do because the C64's hardware scrolling isn't really what you think it is... there are "undocumented features" in the VIC-II discovered by demo coders which can be (ab)used to scroll the screen in a hurry but they're not commonly used in games - Mayhem In Monsterland or the Fred's Back series are relatively rare examples of VSP and AGSP scrolling respectively - and the two hardware scroll registers only move the playfield a distance of eight pixels before the programmer's code has to get involved to shunt memory about.

Offline villain

  • Supporter
  • 464 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 440
  • Country: de
  • Liked: 250
  • Likes Given: 494
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #585 on: 19:59, 12 October 19 »
If I understood this correctly, the BG had more than 8.000 downloads of PD until now.  :o :o :o

Offline andycadley

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 911
  • Liked: 443
  • Likes Given: 73
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #586 on: 00:37, 13 October 19 »
Hardware scrolling on most platforms was usually limited in some fashion, even the NES struggled if you were trying to scroll in multiple directions (ever wondered why some NES games have garbage down the side of the screen - it's a limitation of how the scrolling hardware worked).


However, most people's definition of hardware scrolling at the time meant something that would allow for smooth pixel based scrolling. In that regard the CPC really doesn't qualify, it's display was more oriented around scrolling a screen full of text - which it can do incredibly well. It's not really until the Plus models augmented that with pixel offset scrolling (which combined with the existing function allowed for true fully hardware scrolling) that the CPC range gained something that would meet that more common definition.


I was quite surprised by how limited the C64 hardware assistance was. There was pixel shifting and you could move the display in RAM to help, but the colour memory is fixed and takes more than a frame for the CPU to shift that much data. It's actually interesting quite how many tricks were used to get around it. It's also why a lot of C64 shooters favour four colour backgrounds, it means you can avoid trying to scroll the colour RAM at all.

Offline TMR

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 195
  • Country: gb
  • Beeping the horn on the data bus
    • JasonKelk.me.uk
  • Liked: 128
  • Likes Given: 40
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #587 on: 01:32, 13 October 19 »
However, most people's definition of hardware scrolling at the time meant something that would allow for smooth pixel based scrolling. In that regard the CPC really doesn't qualify, it's display was more oriented around scrolling a screen full of text - which it can do incredibly well.

Isn't it fair to say the vertical scrolling used for Mission Genocide or Warhawk (or Pinball Dreams for that matter...!) is pixel accurate though...?

I was quite surprised by how limited the C64 hardware assistance was. There was pixel shifting and you could move the display in RAM to help, but the colour memory is fixed and takes more than a frame for the CPU to shift that much data.

That last bit isn't quite right, there's enough horsepower to shift over 1K per frame so more than enough for the colour RAM if the screen has been handled previously... but some of that processing grind tends to cordoned off for sprite multiplexing in busier games. Have a look at the Shoot 'Em Up Construction Kit though, that's doing colour-per-tile (so not quite as heavy a load as colour-per-character would be) and runs full screen with colour scrolling alongside multiplexed sprites.
« Last Edit: 01:34, 13 October 19 by TMR »

Offline andycadley

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 911
  • Liked: 443
  • Likes Given: 73
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #588 on: 11:25, 13 October 19 »
Isn't it fair to say the vertical scrolling used for Mission Genocide or Warhawk (or Pinball Dreams for that matter...!) is pixel accurate though...?
By that point you're well into the realm of CRTC tricks though. It's messing with display timings to physically shift the position of the display on screen. Not really using intended functionality.

[q
uote author=TMR link=topic=12369.msg179106#msg179106 date=1570919555]
That last bit isn't quite right, there's enough horsepower to shift over 1K per frame so more than enough for the colour RAM if the screen has been handled previously... but some of that processing grind tends to cordoned off for sprite multiplexing in busier games. Have a look at the Shoot 'Em Up Construction Kit though, that's doing colour-per-tile (so not quite as heavy a load as colour-per-character would be) and runs full screen with colour scrolling alongside multiplexed sprites.


I stand corrected, I'm going off the memory of how it was described to me.

Offline TMR

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 195
  • Country: gb
  • Beeping the horn on the data bus
    • JasonKelk.me.uk
  • Liked: 128
  • Likes Given: 40
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #589 on: 12:38, 13 October 19 »
By that point you're well into the realm of CRTC tricks though. It's messing with display timings to physically shift the position of the display on screen. Not really using intended functionality.
I still hold that hardware scrolling is literally just scrolling being primarily handled by the hardware in some way, otherwise we get into a slightly silly situation where most of the machines previously declared as having "hardware scrolling" actually don't just because the term was ambiguous; the C64 and 264 series have hardware fine scrolling (there are tricks to do more in both cases but they're not officially documented as such or intended functionality) and the BBC Micro or Amstrad CPC have hardware coarse scrolling which further unintended register (ab)use or clever buffering can smooth up.
The only 8-bit computers I can think of right now with both coarse and fine hardware scrolling "out of the box" are the CPC Plus, the Commodore 128's 80 column display and the Atari 8-bit with only one predating the CPC but, since Atari's official documentation didn't come out until around two years after the machine itself, there's a potential question mark there as to if self modifying code overwriting the display lists' LMS commands counts as intended functionality or an unintended side effect that was later adopted. And yes, I'm playing Devil's advocaat there, but hopefully you see the point I'm rather clumsily making?
« Last Edit: 13:40, 13 October 19 by TMR »

Offline Rhino

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 291
  • Liked: 870
  • Likes Given: 366
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #590 on: 13:01, 13 October 19 »
Just released this.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOUXfN8_hJ4
Thank you very much for the great review! I really appreciate all the love and technical editing work you put into your videos.

Offline Rhino

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 291
  • Liked: 870
  • Likes Given: 366
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #591 on: 13:04, 13 October 19 »
If I understood this correctly, the BG had more than 8.000 downloads of PD until now.  :o :o :o
Yes, over 8000 downloads in the first 10 days (only counting the ones downloaded from our server). We really didn't expect that much!

Offline andycadley

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 911
  • Liked: 443
  • Likes Given: 73
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #592 on: 16:49, 13 October 19 »
I still hold that hardware scrolling is literally just scrolling being primarily handled by the hardware in some way, otherwise we get into a slightly silly situation where most of the machines previously declared as having "hardware scrolling" actually don't just because the term was ambiguous; the C64 and 264 series have hardware fine scrolling (there are tricks to do more in both cases but they're not officially documented as such or intended functionality) and the BBC Micro or Amstrad CPC have hardware coarse scrolling which further unintended register (ab)use or clever buffering can smooth up.
The only 8-bit computers I can think of right now with both coarse and fine hardware scrolling "out of the box" are the CPC Plus, the Commodore 128's 80 column display and the Atari 8-bit with only one predating the CPC but, since Atari's official documentation didn't come out until around two years after the machine itself, there's a potential question mark there as to if self modifying code overwriting the display lists' LMS commands counts as intended functionality or an unintended side effect that was later adopted. And yes, I'm playing Devil's advocaat there, but hopefully you see the point I'm rather clumsily making?
Oh I do and entirely agree with what you're saying. But I can see Chinny's point that, in laymans terms at least, the C64 and Amiga had "hardware scrolling" - as in hardware dedicated to making the kinds of smooth scrolling seen in games possible to some degree, wheras computers like the CPC didn't, even if the hardware they did have was flexible enough that it could be pushed into doing things that weren't quite as intended. Which argument makes most sense to people is one of semantics and how strictly accurate you want to be.

Offline ivarf

  • 6128 Plus
  • ******
  • Posts: 565
  • Country: no
  • Liked: 176
  • Likes Given: 328
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #593 on: 16:57, 13 October 19 »
Oh I do and entirely agree with what you're saying. But I can see Chinny's point that, in laymans terms at least, the C64 and Amiga had "hardware scrolling" - as in hardware dedicated to making the kinds of smooth scrolling seen in games possible to some degree, wheras computers like the CPC didn't, even if the hardware they did have was flexible enough that it could be pushed into doing things that weren't quite as intended. Which argument makes most sense to people is one of semantics and how strictly accurate you want to be.


To make it simple:
The ZX Spectrum doesn't have hardware scrolling
The Amstrad CPC has rough hardware scrolling but with clever programming it can do fine hardware scrolling too
The C64 has fine hardware scrolling

Offline TMR

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 195
  • Country: gb
  • Beeping the horn on the data bus
    • JasonKelk.me.uk
  • Liked: 128
  • Likes Given: 40
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #594 on: 17:52, 13 October 19 »
Oh I do and entirely agree with what you're saying. But I can see Chinny's point that, in laymans terms at least, the C64 and Amiga had "hardware scrolling" - as in hardware dedicated to making the kinds of smooth scrolling seen in games possible to some degree, wheras computers like the CPC didn't
It's not that I don't get that point, just that I find it uncomfortable to let the layman's version of the term slide without challenging it. If nothing else Chinny's understanding of what the C64 is doing seems to be off if he thinks nobody writes scroll routines, that seriously undersells what games like Turrican 2 are doing.

To make it simple:
The ZX Spectrum doesn't have hardware scrolling
The Amstrad CPC has rough hardware scrolling but with clever programming it can do fine hardware scrolling too
The C64 has fine hardware scrolling
Add a similar caveat to the C64 about it being able to do coarse scrolling with clever programming - that's what Mayhem In Monsterland or the C64 preview of PD are doing - and bingo...

This thread derailing is starting to make me feel uncomfortable, so sorry to Rhino and BG Games for sticking my oar in like this, sorry to Chinny because I like you and love what you do and for anyone else affected by the points raised in my posts, a helpline is available... or just tell me to bog off, either or. =-)

Offline robcfg

  • Supporter
  • 6128 Plus
  • *
  • Posts: 2.337
  • Country: se
  • 8-Bit Technomancer
    • index.php?action=treasury
  • Liked: 1043
  • Likes Given: 2515
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #595 on: 18:19, 13 October 19 »
Syx point me to the Amstrad Basic itself, because it uses the hardware scroll capabilities when displacing the screen while listing a program.


But as I said before, the math is there. The CPC cannot do a scroll like Pinball Dreams without hardware assistance, and that is not witchcraft, it’s hardware scrolling.




Offline Rhino

  • CPC6128
  • ****
  • Posts: 291
  • Liked: 870
  • Likes Given: 366
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #596 on: 13:17, 14 October 19 »
It's not that I don't get that point, just that I find it uncomfortable to let the layman's version of the term slide without challenging it. If nothing else Chinny's understanding of what the C64 is doing seems to be off if he thinks nobody writes scroll routines, that seriously undersells what games like Turrican 2 are doing.
Add a similar caveat to the C64 about it being able to do coarse scrolling with clever programming - that's what Mayhem In Monsterland or the C64 preview of PD are doing - and bingo...

This thread derailing is starting to make me feel uncomfortable, so sorry to Rhino and BG Games for sticking my oar in like this, sorry to Chinny because I like you and love what you do and for anyone else affected by the points raised in my posts, a helpline is available... or just tell me to bog off, either or. =-)
There is nothing to be sorry about, debates are good and I think the knowledge you bring about the C64 is very interesting.

Offline Lone

  • Supporter
  • CPC664
  • *
  • Posts: 99
  • Country: fr
  • Liked: 183
  • Likes Given: 75
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #597 on: 16:17, 14 October 19 »
Hello


Is it planned to release a cartridge version ?


That's mainly because I no longer use the floppy on my 6128+ (in fact, it's not even working), but the famous C4CPC.


And also because I would like to test it on my Raspberry pi 6128+ emulator....


Anyway, great work, it's awesome !

LambdaMikel

  • Guest
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #598 on: 19:06, 14 October 19 »
Hello


Is it planned to release a cartridge version ?


That's mainly because I no longer use the floppy on my 6128+ (in fact, it's not even working), but the famous C4CPC.


And also because I would like to test it on my Raspberry pi 6128+ emulator....


Anyway, great work, it's awesome !


You have a CPC Plus Cartridge Port on your Raspberry PI Emulator??  ???
Can you share details please?




Offline Lone

  • Supporter
  • CPC664
  • *
  • Posts: 99
  • Country: fr
  • Liked: 183
  • Likes Given: 75
Re: Pinball Dreams, new game from Batman Group!!
« Reply #599 on: 21:18, 14 October 19 »

You have a CPC Plus Cartridge Port on your Raspberry PI Emulator??  ???
Can you share details please?


Nothing special : My Raspberry pi emulator load games from CPR (as I have no keyboard right now). So, Pinball dream on a CPR file would be great !