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Messages - JamesV

Small update on the CE version.. I've added in a couple more tiles, finished the explosion and door opening animations (although the latter isn't demonstrated here), finished the one-way laser beams, and drawn a placeholder alien sprite :P I'm having trouble getting the aliens to look how I want when reducing the original 32x32 sprites down to 16x16 (I suck with pixel art), so I might need to ask for help at some point - I'll see how I go :)

The TI-83/84+ monochrome equivalent:

Quote from: Ranman on October 15, 2017, 02:33:52 AM
Pure sweetness. :thumbsup:

Which Amiga did you own? I had an Amiga 600 with an internal HDD and the M68030 accelerator and a Genlock. I kick myself for selling it.
We had an Amiga 500 with a RAM upgrade to 1MB (I think standard was 512KB). So it wasn't top of the line, but for a 10 year old kid it was pretty cool :) We don't have it anymore, but thankfully with the magic of emulators, I'm still able to play a lot of my old favourites!

Quote from: _iPhoenix_ on October 15, 2017, 03:10:55 AM
@JamesV the gif will come out better if you set frame skip to its lowest setting in CEmu.
Yeah I had it on the lowest frame skip setting, which I think captures at 15fps. Although I'm not sure if that can be increased by increasing the CEmu render rate up from 30fps - I might try tonight. Regardless, I'm just happy to have CEmu. Trying to debug this routine without it would have been a nightmare :P
I decided to attempt to recreate the menu screen from the original Amiga game, and it's now working! The camera is flying through a star field, panning on x/y at varying speeds, and alternating on z between flying forwards and backwards (also at varying speeds). The stars are each drawn in 1 of 8 shades of grey, depending on their current depth.

Unfortunately the GIF doesn't really do it justice with pixel artifacts resulting in some static stars and the flashing logo border not appearing very smooth.. But it looks much nicer running in CEmu, and even nicer again on calc :)

I'll try to back port this to the monochrome version as well.
Based on some feedback I've received, I've uploaded a small update (v1.2.1). It should be available soon at the original download link above. Changes are as follows:

- Fixed the "warp into wall" bug in one of the maps in the Pyramid of Snakes.
- Can now press [2nd] to finish talking/reading/viewing inventory.
- Fixed a bug with partial heart level when starting a game.
- Wells now fully heal all your hearts, with the cost being increased to 150 Gold (up from 100 Gold).
- Reduced Gold loss upon death to 1/4 (down from 1/2).
- Player now revives at a nearby Well of Life after death.

Additionally, I added in a little nod to the potential Banchor II :P
Quote from: 123outerme on October 11, 2017, 01:38:36 AM
Looks amazing! I can definitely see the Zelda influences, especially from the "enemy spawn" animation. That looks pretty familiar ;) But that's good, of course, that your game reminds me of an NES classic that grew to a massive franchise. I'm looking forward to other releases from your planned trilogy!

Speaking of that dark-red background, I love it! It looks really fitting of the whole atmosphere, at least from the screenshots in the topic. I have to ask, though, why'd you choose that red? I'm really interested to know :)
Funnily enough, my inspiration for the enemy spawn animation was from Golvellius (see below), not Zelda. But then, Golvellius was Sega's answer to Zelda :P

I've already started the sequel a couple of years back, under the name Zargul, as a first-person D&D style game based on the Eye of the Beholder engine. It hasn't seen any progress in about 12 months, but I'll eventually get back on to it. And then at some point, the 3rd part, which will be a different style of RPG again.

The red came from the old HTML readme from the TI-86 version, which I think I originally used because it just seemed like a fitting, dark, evil colour to suit the theme.

Quote from: tr1p1ea on October 10, 2017, 09:52:46 PM
What bpp are you running the program in out of interest?
8bpp, although the palette only has 5 colours loaded (the dark red background, plus the 4 gray shades). The original grayscale buffering part of the engine is unchanged, so all the sprite routines, etc. are the same as they were on the TI-86, but there is a new routine that parses the dark & light buffers simultaneously to select the palette colour when updating vram. At the same time, it does the scaling up 2x horizontally, and finally performs ldir's to scale vertically (similar to Pirate Space Kitties).
Quote from: xlibman on October 08, 2017, 10:36:58 PM
Glad to see this game ported :) I wonder if in the future it would be easy to add color palettes based on area you're in or menu for some colors?
I would be possible, even just some 4-bit colour. Although I'm kind of inclined to just leave the pretty colours for the sequels if/when I get around to continuing work on them.. :)
Back in 2006 I released Banchor, which was a Zelda-like grayscale RPG for the TI-86, using a modified version of an engine written by David Phillips of Assembly Coders Zenith. By the time I released it, the TI-86 was long since discontinued.

I decided to do a quick port over to the TI-84+CE, with minimal changes to the original game. Even though there are probably numerous things that could be done to improve the game, I wanted to leave it mostly untouched. And it was simply a fun exercise in porting the grayscale engine, as well as giving Banchor a little more life, because all those years ago I had plans to turn it into a trilogy, with each game having different a different play style.. plans that never really went away... Zargul was secretly going to be a sequel or prequel to Banchor, using the first-person D&D style of Eye of the Beholder (thus, Zargul will become Banchor 2 if/when I get back to working on it).

Anywho.. the port is complete. The TI-86 128x64 resolution is scaled up to 256*128 in the original 4-level grayscale. Here are a couple of screenshots.


One final note - along with Zelda, Banchor was heavily inspired by Golvellius. Nevertheless, I'm still planning on continuing my 84+CE version of this at some stage, given that Golvellius will be in full colour, and Banchor is only in grayscale.. :)

Download here
Site News & Announcements / Re: CodeWalrus Fundraising
September 15, 2017, 01:38:45 AM
I made a $20 USD donation the other day - I hope it helps! :)
Quote from: xMarminq_ on September 13, 2017, 11:33:30 PM
Are you doing all episodes for the CE and will there be a level editor?  :blah: I live on level editors.
Yes both Episodes 1 & 2 will be available on the CE along with the new Episode 3 (which concurrently will also be available on the monochrome calculators).

And yes, I am indeed planning on releasing a Campaign Editor so that people can create their own levels / campaigns, which should include all the features of the built in campaigns, eg. mission briefings, triggered events, ability to have multiple entries/exists per level (choose your own path through the campaign), etc. Again, the campaigns will be playable on both the CE calculator and the monochrome calculators.

When I get to the stage of developing the Campaign Editor, I might be in touch for your suggestions/feedback, as I know you've been hard at work developing some great work for Oiram! :)
Tech, Science, IT discussion & News / Re: iPhone X
September 13, 2017, 10:45:03 PM
I haven't had a chance to read up on it all yet. I'm still on an iPhone 6 at the moment (with 16GB storage because the 64GB was out of stock at the time and I was impatient.. bad decision) so I'm keen to upgrade. But whether I'll go all out and get the iPhone X or just go with the iPhone 8, I'm not sure yet.

I might even just go with an iPhone 7, seeing as their price should drop off significantly over the next few months and even though I always go on 24 month plans, I struggle to justify handset repayments that get too high because I'm tight :P
Gaming / Re: Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap remake
September 13, 2017, 10:39:42 PM
Quote from: xlibman on September 13, 2017, 03:03:21 PM
I was contemplating buying it when it gets cheaper. I got Wonder boy in Monster Land personally.
I'll definitely be buying it at some stage, but I'm forcing myself to wait until I get a few work projects finished first. Otherwise Wonder Boy will distract me too much! :P

On the SMS, we had Wonder Boy (the original) and Wonder Boy in Monster Land, and we used to rent out the Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap cartridge regularly from the local video store. I often contemplated trying to adapt the original over to the TI-83(+) monochrome calculators over the years but never had a go at it. It would be more feasible now with the TI-84+CE, so maybe one day! And given that the SMS ran on a z80, I could try disassembling the original ROM and just straight porting it.

Gaming / Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap remake
September 12, 2017, 06:39:55 AM
For anyone here who was a Sega Master System owner back in the 80's, or even if you just appreciate retro platform gaming, then I think you'll enjoy this which I happened to stumble across recently. The classic game, Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap, has been remade for PC, PS4 and Xbox One! Along with porting over the classic graphics and 8-bit audio, there is also beautiful new HD hand drawn style graphics and updated music/sound. I'm yet to purchase and play it myself, but I played the original many times when I was younger, and I'm looking forward to giving it another go with the updated look.

Games / Re: Sorcery of Uvutu PC Port
September 12, 2017, 06:03:22 AM
I'll definitely appreciate the custom keymapping, as WASD / Space would feel weird to me. If it's an old school type game where I'm not using the mouse, I prefer arrow keys (with my right hand) and then something like Space, Ctrl or Shift for my left hand. Otherwise, for games such as WoW / Minecraft, etc. where I have the mouse in my right hand, I use QWED (Q / E for strafing left/right). I think that originated from the default WoW controls, where Q is strafe left and A is turn left.
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