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SoCoder -> Showcase Home -> Platformer

Created : 17 February 2024
Edited : 17 February 2024
System : Commodore Vic 20
Language : 6502 and Turbo Rascal

Emu's Massive Hunt [Vic 20 +35K]

I'm making a platformer for the fully expanded Vic 20. I've had fun with making a game in the unexpanded (4k) Vic and now I want to do something without the restrictions of limited RAM. Well it's still limited to a bit under 40K but that is huge in 8bit terms.

(title may change)

This is a sequel to Windmill Blitz.

After Grotbags was unsuccessful preventing Emu reaching the Pink Windmill, you find she has caused more chaos inside. All of Rod's Future Was 8 Bit orders are strewn across the windmill and worse still Rod himself is missing! Collect all the games, cartridges and other goodies and free Rod so the orders can be sent out to all the nice boys and girls.

Latest Update

Currently working on adding Grotbags who will appear in the room to give you some trouble.



Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:23
At the moment I am putting in Grotbags, who will fly in to the current room if you've been in there for some time and cause you some hassles. The time before she comes in is determined by how many items you have collected. There are 255 items to find, and the time before she appears reduces as you collect more.

You will be able to complete the game without collecting all the items but you will be scored and rated at the end, so to get a perfect ending you must find them all and thus it will be harder to do.

I've got lots of platformer type things, platforms and ladders of course, baddies to avoid, things to collect, conveyor belts, pipes, etc. I also have keys and door and some power ups that give you abilities to be able to get to new places in the game.
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:27
Freezing the baddies so I can test collisions. I'm going for the slightly more fair approach. I hate games with huge collision hit boxes. I want the player to enjoy the game, not be frustrated. The game is going to be tough enough as it is anyway.

Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:29
I've several types of baddies to hinder your progress.

There are several variety of up and down baddies. Two walkers (the croc and dusty bin), and eyes that bounce around. And there will be Grotbags who flies around like Witch Hazel does in my other game Pumpkid.

Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:34
Looks very nice! I like the bird.
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:34
I've got some twists, here is dusk and dark modes. These will come in around the basement and dungeons.



The flickering is meant to be like a candle light effect. I've made it a little more random since these screen grabs were taken.
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:38
That looks fun
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:41
Here's what the memory map looks like so far:

The green-ish areas are RAM I can use, there's a lot a space here still so I should have enough to fit everything in, including titles, game over and that kind of thing, plus there are 64 locations (8x8 grid of 16x16 character tiles). I'm compressing the location data so it generally comes out at half the size or better. The odd room a little more.
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:56
This looks amazing!
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 02:57
Thanks! I've been stuck on the Vic 20 which was my first computer, where I first discovered all the magic these home computers offered and have had a lot of fun learning it inside and out. Back in the day I only got as far as BASIC on the Vic and made many (probably not so good) games. Information was hard to come by so all the docs, tricks and techniques were not things I knew about back then. It's so much easier to build games for these ancient machines now, with emulators and so many tools to pick from.

I'm finding the ideas and inspiration is flowing easily for the Emu game which is keeping me going. The only other game where that really happened was Cheesy Trials and that kind of burnt me out for a while as it was a competition entry that needed to be done in a short timescale. I have no such time constraints for this game so I'm just enjoying building it out.
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 03:12
Nice, I can relate to the time constraints being annoying for things
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 03:13
I have come to a realisation. I've worked on a lot of remakes of other peoples games, going right back to the Vic where I tried to replicate arcade games and commercial titles through to our days at Retro Remakes. I have enjoyed making those games, they give you a template and structure to work to but there's something missing for me doing these and I realise it is the creativity in your own ideas, adding and removing things as I go along and discovering the game along the way. I know I am not alone, Jayenkai has more or less written the book on that with a million iterations of games and ideas
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 03:18
Last screenshot for the day, the death sequence.

Saturday, 17 February 2024, 03:45
*pictures the Manic Miner shoe/boot thing, except it's Rod Hull's arm stretching all the way up the screen*
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 03:59
OOOoooo now there's an idea for an ending!
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 05:40
Now you've done it haha
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 05:49
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 08:17
I like that Rod Hull idea.
Saturday, 17 February 2024, 10:00
I've actually got an image in my head of Rod shoving his and up Emu's arse.
Wednesday, 21 February 2024, 08:12
A bit of lightning, very very frightening, me.

Wednesday, 21 February 2024, 10:04
Wednesday, 21 February 2024, 10:18
Galileo? GALILEO?
Sunday, 25 February 2024, 05:45
Sound! There will be music added to the title screens later...

View on YouTube
Sunday, 25 February 2024, 06:07
Oooh, boopidly booopily boo!!
Wednesday, 06 March 2024, 12:42
Getting near the end now.

View on YouTube
Wednesday, 06 March 2024, 13:58
Oooooh! Good luck!
Wednesday, 06 March 2024, 15:48
This looks and sounds splendid!
Wednesday, 06 March 2024, 16:25
I have two end sequences to put in, some location names and lots of test, then the time machine and go back to 1981 to become rich and famous off my state of the art for the 1980's Vic 20 game.
Tuesday, 19 March 2024, 15:59
All done. Lots of testing now.
Tuesday, 19 March 2024, 16:14
Wednesday, 20 March 2024, 01:21
I've got the 4k + 24k + 8k prg file down to 24k in total using exomizer to compress the main block and that additional 8k separately. And using a fast load option on my tape utility, the tape loader goes to 24 which is pretty quick to load in tape terms.
Wednesday, 20 March 2024, 07:00
This is the map. I've got a rough sketch with a hint to get you started that I'll include with the game.

Wednesday, 20 March 2024, 07:13
It's a beautiful windmill!
Wednesday, 20 March 2024, 07:47
It's a bit chubby much like the tardis, bigger on the inside.
Monday, 01 April 2024, 10:13
This week been fixing Ntsc issues as there's less time to do stuff each frame.

All related to the dungeon colouring areas. It's just a bit too much to do on ntsc and was resulting in some sprite character flickering.

Got two fixes...

1) rewrite the colouring routine so I could call this last and draw all the sprite characters first.

2) the above moves the colouring routine to the problematic area on screen and it flickers when applied to any of the top 4 rows. Unlike the sprites, the colouring doesn't have to be updated every frame so I can leave it on screen for 3 frames and the erase/redraw on the 4th frame. This results in a much better experience with reduced flickering.

I have another idea to redraw / erase only the bits that change but I am so short on RAM now I don't think it will be easily possible.
Monday, 01 April 2024, 10:19
Sounds incredibly complicated. I'm not sure I'd've remembered about there being NTSC differences, if I tried coding anything like that myself.
It'd be one of those "Oh, bugger, ok, hang on.." fixes that came about all too late in the day.
Friday, 03 May 2024, 02:01
First orders for the tape release are arriving today!
Friday, 03 May 2024, 03:03
Wednesday, 12 June 2024, 00:46
Saw a review for this pop-up on my youtube feed today, had a watch along, the tape looks lovely also

Wednesday, 12 June 2024, 01:04
Thanks, the download is now available here.

Wednesday, 12 June 2024, 08:02

Here it is with the hellscape that is RetroArch's interface dumped all over it.
But, hey.. Gaming on an iPad
Thursday, 13 June 2024, 16:57
oooo - at least the buttons don't cover the game area ... not that you need that many buttons!
Saturday, 15 June 2024, 12:26

View on YouTube

You got Chinnied!