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Messages - JamesV

1
I've implemented the Passcode storing system that DJ_O suggested, so when you receive passcodes you can store them on calc instead of having to write them down.

Also the prologue/cutscenes are now ported to the CE, the Episode II one can be seen below.

2
The rest of the tilesets are now complete (Stores, Science and Main Tower areas respectively in the screenshot below. Also in the Main Tower video you can see the new cloaked enemy if you look closely. They won't be super common but will show up late in the game as the difficulty ramps up.

Most of the levels are roughed out now, but I still need to do the event scripting to make them properly playable.

3
I'm adding in an additional 20 achievements in v3.0.0 (bringing the total number of achievements to 45). Below is the full list. Bonus points if you want to work out the many references in the names, they're not very subtle :P

There are also 6 new "cheat" passcodes that will be revealed in the Episode III epilogue, so there are now 16 cheat codes that all have varying effects on the game (eg. disable wall clipping, no enemies, fast enemies, reversed direction controls, etc.)

Also the Security Guard enemy from ABIV has been reimplemented.

4
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on May 15, 2021, 11:06:08 AMHow do you go through those paths with the electric bolt thing without dying? Looks nice as always by the way. I can't wait to try the new version, even though I've been mostly playing Banchor lately (3 bosses beaten so far) :)
They're a one-way path, so if you go through the direction indicated by the arrows on the ground then you'll be fine, but you can't go back in the other direction. Hope you're enjoying Banchor!

The 3rd beta is now ready and can be downloaded here :)
5
Yeah this version adds 6 new tilesets (outdoor areas, Civilian Tower, Military Tower, Stores Tower, Science Tower, Main Tower), so lots of variety :)

I'll have a 3rd beta release ready in a couple of days, but in the meantime, here's a preview of the tileset for the Military Tower levels..

6
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on May 04, 2021, 11:23:19 AMDamn, 30 levels! That's gonna be pretty fun and add a lot of replay value. Also I like the new graphics!
Thanks DJ_O! That's the idea :) One of the new achievements for Episode III will be to finish the game via all 7 routes.

A few more things have been done..

- Added the land mine trap in outdoor areas for Episode III
- Implemented basic floor tile randomisation that applies when levels are loaded
- Simple laser turret enemy for outdoor areas
- Tileset for the "Civilian Tower" areas now done
- 2 player co-op (same calc, no linkplay) now ported across to the CE



I hope to have another beta update in the next week or so :)
7
Seeing as the "porting" part is mostly done now, I've started working on the new campaign, Episode III: Impact. This campaign will have 30 levels with multiple paths through to the finish (ala Alien Breed: Tower Assault). There are 7 potential routes, which will take you through between 11-14 levels depending on the path you take.

Below shows an early draft of part of the first level, where you've crash landed outside a base that has been overrun by the aliens.

8
I've made 2 (admittedly half-baked) attempts at linkplay games without much success. So I'm not sure I'll try again, but never say never. I just have other features/games I'm more motivated to do :)
9
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on April 23, 2021, 12:18:24 PMI like the dark room effect! I wonder, though, why is there two HUD? Are you planning to add multiplayer or something? Also I noticed in the screenshot that you move slightly faster than on the real calculator, but I got one of those first CE hardware version that had slower flash or something I think.


EDIT: I found a bug: I was on the password input screen and let it sit there for a minute, then the calc turned ON and when I turned it back on, the game was in full color mode instead of 8 bits. While typing the password the screen faded out once too before reappearing instantly.
There has been 2 player co-op since v2.0.0, but it's not that great, as it's on the one calc (no linkplay). But that's what the bottom HUD is for. 2-player mode is disabled on the CE currently, just hasn't been high on my priority list seeing as it's not a huge feature, but it will certainly be available in the final release.

Since adding the HUD I get some frame lag sometimes when there are lots of sprites on screen, more often during the countdown sequence as there are more explosion sprites and the counter sprites. But I'm hoping to fix with with some optimisations.

Thanks for letting me know about that bug, probably some silly APD thing I've missed. I've put it on my list and will try to find and squash it :)
10
I've updated to Beta 2, which now is almost a full CE port of the game as it was on the 83+/84+ (sans a few minor features, and proper enemy sprites).

Whilst a lot of the changes are bug fixes or porting little things across, the screenshot below shows the updated "air ducts", which are now 2x2 tiles, you can walk around the edge of them (but don't fall in!), and then how the CE handles the "power out" type effect on Episode I Level 11.

The download link is the same as before.

11
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on April 21, 2021, 06:03:20 PMI need to remember to write down or take pics of my passwords, because I always forget after beating the 2nd stage XD.
I'm glad you brought that up, an idea I've got on my to-do list for the CE version is to add an option for your passcodes to be saved to a list when you get them. Then when you go to the "Enter Passcode" screen, you could bring up this list to select a passcode, or maintain the list (delete passcodes you no longer want, etc.)

I'm assuming that's a feature you'd be keen on? :)
12
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on April 17, 2021, 04:06:41 PMFor some reasons I can't seem to find enough keys in the first stage of part 1 to get very far, though. I need to play it again to check what I might have missed.
You probably haven't missed any pickups, but there aren't always enough keys on the ground, sometimes you need to go to an Intex terminal and buy a key pack (which gives you 5 keys). And yes you will need to do this to complete Level 1. Alternatively you can shoot doors down, although this does chew through your ammo, so it's more of a last resort thing.

If you want, I could do a video showing the path I take through the first level :)
13
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on April 15, 2021, 12:19:32 PMI love the attention to details so far, a lot of old calculator games just had enemies disappear instantly with no animation when dying. Very nice job so far. I also like the title screen star animation. Reminds me a bit of Final Fantasy The End screens. I would make it so that when pressing Clear you can reset the current stage (or quit the game) via a confirm menu, for when we get stuck. I can't wait to see the new sprites for enemies and bosses.
Thanks! I should have put some text in the pause screen to make it clear, but when you're paused (by pressing MODE), you can press CLEAR to quit back to the main menu. The current pause screen is just temporary anyway, eventually there will be a HUD, and the pause screen will be made to look prettier.

EDIT: Still working on cleaning up backend stuff, but I did improve the countdown sequence a little by adding in the screen shaking effect, and the level explosion sequence when the timer runs out.

14
Ok it's been a minute.. But I've been progressing steadily along on this for the last 2 months, and now have a beta version for anyone interested in trying out the CE build! You can get it here.

Below are a couple of recent screenshots showing some of the progress, from more fleshed out tileset gfx (there are now multiple tilesets & palettes), to cleaner transitions, animations, etc. Enemy & boss sprites aren't done yet.

 

There's still a lot of work to do but I'm much more organised than I was 4 years ago, so fingers crossed I get it finished!
15
It is cool to see Midknight Software back! I must admit, I've not played FFD or ZS, as back at the time I didn't have a TI-89 or TI-92, but I remember being very impressed with what I'd seen! It will be great to see what you come up with Kodi! :)

I think Patrick D is probably the longest serving TI-community member still around at ~20 years. I'll hit 20 years myself next year too, but it's hard to not still get a kick out of programming on graphing calculators :P
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