16KB ROM game compo - technical thread

Started by cpcitor, 13:56, 05 January 13

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Sykobee (Briggsy)

Quote from: steve on 15:04, 03 February 13
Perhaps a rule for future contests is that the program must be fully developed and created on a cpc/plus?
Pretty unfair for those of us who sadly don't have a CPC in the house, (and wouldn't be allowed one if they tried)!
Also one reason we're still getting games on the CPC is that the PC based development tools make things easier for people to do such things as a hobby.


Quote from: Axelay on 11:13, 04 February 13

There was PDS.
Thank you, I was trying to find it w/o success... PDF, PSD, PSS...  :-\
"You make one mistake in your life and the internet will never let you live it down" (Keith Goodyer)


Quote from: steve on 21:58, 03 February 13
Just more of a challenge.

It wouldnt be more of a challenge in a way I would regard as interesting though.  Z80 assembly is Z80 assembly, on whatever you develop it on.  The difference is, my real hardware is a pretty straight forward 128K CPC with 3" disk and Maxam, and from memory, source code of 150k would compile to about a 16k executable in something like 5 minutes.  On my PC, that takes less than a second.  Now if I spot problems, with PC based tools I can immediately pause execution, check various memory locations, restart with break points and get to the bottom of something all in a matter of a few minutes.  On my CPC, I'd have to check those memory locations by assembling a new version with some memory locations written to the screen.  With that 5 minute assembly process each time until I find the problem.  The process is basically the same, but could take an hour or more to achieve the same result that took a couple of minutes on PC.  So I dont see PC tools as making it 'easier', they just make for a far more efficient use of time.


The most important thing for me is that when developing with an emulator, my source code is always safe. When I was writing anything back in the day, even with a ROM-based editor/assembler, I still had to keep saving and loading my source code for fear of corrupting it between runs (made worse by only having an unexpanded 464, so no RAM banking and tape only). It's not even that you can just look to see if the source is still there - what if you just corrupted a few bytes in the middle of the source?

Not only couldn't I use the whole memory, I also had to think carefully about where my source was in memory, which severely limited what I could do.

Even having my source on disc would be safer, but there's still no guarantee if you're doing a loader for instance that you couldn't accidentally format a track.

With a modern emulator, you can just compile and run in a couple of buttons and you know the source is completely safe. Even if you test regularly on real hardware (I do), the boost in iteration time makes it far preferable to using a real CPC for source editing and assembling/compiling.


I don't know if a pc hd is more save than a 3" disc. My first batch of 10 3" discs from 1987 (Panasonic) still runs 100% well, without any error. Now show me that PC HD from 1987  :laugh:
TFM of FutureSoft
Also visit the CPC and Plus users favorite OS: FutureOS - The Revolution on CPC6128 and 6128Plus


Quote from: Octoate on 00:35, 02 February 13
"hex2bin" utility, because I have added a native binary.

Thanks for the effort. Have you made a fully static binary ?
Else it will fail on many cases, as only the Linux kernel (by contrast with upper layers) makes efforts at binary compatibility (and is very good at that : binaries from kernel before 1.0 are reported to work unmodified on latest kernel). Yet a binary supports only one architecture.

On cpcitor/findyway · GitHub (which has a different approach) I elected to automatically download and compile the cross-compiler and iDSK, so as to not add any platform dependency or require the user lenghty procedure before enjoying development.
Had a CPC since 1985, currently software dev professional, including embedded systems.

I made in 2013 the first CPC cross-dev environment that auto-installs C compiler and tools: cpc-dev-tool-chain: a portable toolchain for C/ASM development targetting CPC, later forked into CPCTelera.

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