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Atari 2600 Boulder Dash (R) Announced!


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Just curious how this engine would act if there was no RAM expansion...

It wouldn't work. :)


a) We are using some self-modifying code for the kernel and there is one kernel for each row you see. Since we are not using the 2nd sprite anymore and the code is still in there, it might be possible to use those 10 cycles to get rid of the self-modifying code.

b) The score display(s) are also using self-modifying code

c) We have to store the board somewhere (40x22 tiles)

d) We have two stacks for keeping track and manipulating the "alive" tiles (2x128 bytes)

e) We store the graphics in RAM and modify them there (so the game in fact has a screen buffer) (10x8 visibile tiles, 21 bytes each)

f) ...


So with some heavy optimizing in the end we might not need 16K RAM (maybe even 8K would be possible), but we definitely need some extra RAM.

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AtariAge and First Star Software, Inc. are hosting a box and label design competition for the recently announced Boulder Dash® Atari 2600 port (see detailed news here)! The winning design will be featured on the game cartridge, the manual, and the box. Plans are to release the AtariAge version of Boulder Dash® in time for Christmas. Now you can be a part of the effort to bring about this highly anticipated release!


The winner of the contest will receive a copy of Boulder Dash® in cartridge form, featuring their winning label design, signed by Andrew, Thomas, Albert, and Richard M. Spitalny (president of First Star Software, Inc.) The winner will also receive a $50 gift certificate in the AtariAge Store. The contest will run until 11:59pm (EST), Sunday, November 20th, 2011 and all submissions must be received by this time! After the contest has ended, AtariAge, First Star Software, Thomas Jentzsch and Andrew Davie will select one of the entries as the label to be used for Boulder Dash®.


Full details about how to enter the contest are here! Good luck, and we look forward to seeing your entries!


Boulder Dash® Label Contest


Please use the following thread to discuss the label contest:







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I haven't visited for a while but never thought I'd miss such big news. For what it's worth, I know this isn't a pre-order list, etc. but I would really appreciate the opportunity to buy one copy. Thank you Andrew and Thomas for bringing this to the finish line.


PS, wish I'd saved my old avatar! Oh well :)

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According to this, "In Like Flynn" comes from an Australian preacher named John Flynn who helped to create the Royal Flying Doctor Service, and has nothing to do with Errol Flynn.


To be fair to Americans, they're going to be plenty more familiar with "In Like Flynt" due to the popular 60s American movie with James Coburn.

Edited by ls650
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