Happy New Year

Happy 2018 everyone!

I didn’t get quite as much done as I’d hoped, but I did make some significant progress on the CRPG.

I finally finished the title screen! I may still go back and tweak it a bit later, but right now it looks good enough to ship with if needed.

I also completed the musical opening, although I still need to integrate it into the program. I’m still going to do some work there as well; there’s a bug where after the song is completed there is a last little “bing” of notes from a source unknown. I also want to soften the volume on it; it’s rather loud on the hardware even with the P.E. Box on.

Code-wise, I completed the Travel module, all that remains is the sailing portion which is tied into the manager module. I’ll no doubt have many bugs and issues to work through once I run it, but at least it’s code complete and it compiles without error.

The manager module is a bit of work, because I’m throwing out most of what I’d done previously and starting fresh. For statistics screens, I originally loaded screens from disk and then populated them with values. This time around, I’m generating the screens completely in code. (Yes, I COULD store them complete screens in memory, but see below on that.)

I’m hoping that transaction code will remain mostly the same with just some tweaks. I figure I have at least a couple multi-hour sessions ahead before I can call the Manager module code complete.

My goal is to keep the program file, which is loaded in chunks into the extended memory, at 128K. This is to keep the base disk size for the entire program at 180K, because there are still a LOT of 99’ers who lack disk controllers capable of more than that. Disk controllers are mostly TI on eBay these days, and if you don’t get an 80-track modification done to them they’re limited to 180k.

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7 Responses to Happy New Year

  1. Alessandro says:

    gorgeous title screen!

    • adamantyr says:

      Thanks! I may still change some colors… I’ve discovered that luminosity matters almost more than actual color. So both yellows and the grey are actually SO bright that they don’t work for background very well.

  2. Alessandro says:

    Remember that you do not have to create the perfect game, but an exceptionally fun game. I follow your progress from the beginning, I hope that in 2018 I will finally be able to play with this little gem !!

    • adamantyr says:

      You will be playing it THIS year. My goal is to have a playable form by Fest-West to show off, and possibly distribute.

      I doubt all the game content will be completed by then (that’s where my perfectionist tendencies really rear up) but if the basic engine is more or less done, that part will be pretty easy anyway.

      Playtesting and troubleshooting is going to take the longest. My plan is to get a small core group of testers to help with that, some of which will not be 99’ers because I want feedback from several directions.

  3. Realms of Quest says:

    What a great looking title screen.

    It would be a lot of fun if we had access to a time machine, go back to the year 1982 and present our retrogaming RPG creations to the publishers back then. Imagine their reactions – these games would be *the* killer apps that encourage people to buy even more of those computers we’re developing for.

  4. adamantyr says:

    Indeed that would be fun! Mind you, mine would also require a card that didn’t exist until 1993… 😉

    • Realms of Quest says:

      Yea, and I have to concede that my game’s system requirements for a VIC-20 with 32KB RAM expansion plus disk drive would have severely limited the customer base at the time. While these peripherals were available in it’s heyday, the vast majority of it’s users just had a stock machine (no extra RAM), a cassette drive and a joystick. And with the Commodore 64 coming out recently, why buy all that extra RAM (which was expensive) for a few games that required it when you can buy a C64 which was going to have a much larger software and games library?

      I like the VIC-20 and I want to see mid-1980s style CRPG games made for it. It’s the canvas I choose to express my creativity. And the argument that I should develop the game for a modern platform is moot in that emulation has been available forever now.

      In fact, I have a competitor in the VIC-20 CRPG dev arena: https://twitter.com/petrih3/status/897548652498923520 (I actually posted on his Twitter, calling him a “worthy adversary” in a funny and friendly way). Apparently, he wants to release the game in cartridge format. He’s using compression to fit everything into 32KB. While I concede that he is technically a better programmer than I, I get an advantage in that my game will have 600KB of content spanning four floppy disk sides and that I’m an OCD obsessive who wants to see this game I’ve always wanted to make since I was 14 years old finally coming to fruition.

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