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Space Rocks (2600)


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  • New Magna-Mines menu option. Before they were only enabled on the Normal and Hard levels.
  • Fixed a few bugs related to the Magna-Mines.
  • The Magna-Mine now splits into 3 double-sections when shot, each of which splits in half when shot.
  • New Control menu option to specify if you're using joysticks or multi-button gamepads. If gamepad is selected for a player then the "down" feature (shields, hyperspace, 180) is remapped to another fire button. Gamepads known to work include:
    • Amiga CD32
      • Red = Fire
      • Blue = "down"


      • B = Fire
      • C = "down"

New double-section Magna-Mines:




New menu options:



Left player using Gamepad, right player using joystick:




At this point I have 5 things left on my To Do list, at which point I will consider the game in Release Candidate mode.

  1. change heartbeat timer to use a fractional decrement
  2. revise Manga-Mine speed logic to also consider the selected LEVEL (it's way to fast for Kids)
  3. saucer's targeting a stationary spot at end of round, need to fix that
  4. if possible, display high score on demo screen
  5. review easter egg

ROMs - Harmony or Stella1




1 Requires Stella ver 3.7.1 or later. See first post for instructions on how to reduce flicker.

Edited by SpiceWare
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This one may be related, but it's kind of fun so you might probably just as well leave it in:


When you die, if you hit hyperspace before your explosion disappears, you will still hyperspace, but finish exploding in your new location. :D

I've experienced the same. It's quite comical to say the least! :lol: I'd leave it in.

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Hmm, wonder how many variations there are now with the new menu options :ponder:

  • Players - 5 options
  • Style - 2 options
  • Color - 17 options
  • Level - 4 options
  • Down - 4 options
  • Friction - 2 options
  • Bonus - 4 options
  • Magna-Mines - 2 options
  • Control - 4 options

5*2*17*3*4*2*4*2*4 + 5*2*17*1*1*2*4*2*4


141, 440

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  • revised the heartbeat timer
  • could start shields and hyperspace after getting killed, fixed
  • saucer targeted an empty spot at end of round, fixed
  • shifted shield sound effect to a higher in priority
  • fixed some problems with 2 players and 1 joystick that was introduced with gamepad support
  • fixed a problem where shots on the left side of screen would pass thru asteroids if they were wrapped around the left & right border. Noticeable with large asteroids, but affected smaller asteroids as well
  • fixed a "burnt out" bottom segment of player 2's lives display
  • Manga-Mines and saucer can now detect the closest path to you even if it means wrapping around the edge of the screen
  • Magna-Mine speeds revised, level now taken into account
  • Magna-Mines leave the screen quicker after killing player
  • Magna-Mines no longer leave screen if player uses hyperspace


I thought this would be the initial Release Candidate, but I found 2 new issues while testing this build:

  • I got past 50K for the first time tonight and experienced a screen roll.
  • like the shots used to be, if the player is on the left edge of the screen and an asteroid is on the right edge wrapping around to the left, the player will not collide with the asteroid.

ROMs - Harmony or Stella1




1 Requires Stella ver 3.7.1 or later. See first post for instructions on how to reduce flicker.

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I couldn't get past 41K just now playing on real hardware, but the last game my projector did lose signal and blank costing me a life so maybe that was a "roll"?

It really feels polished now.

I want to buy this for everyone I know, it has so much going for it!

Just shooting rocks can get monotonous, but with the saucers and magna-mines it really gets you to move around and not sit in one place. Then there is two players at the same time with co op _and_ fight.. 141,000+ variations? What a marketing dream. Put THAT on the box!. ...well, the reviews are sure to be spectacular!

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Yeah, the projector losing the signal was probably a screen roll. To fix that I need to get some diagnostics into the program as I don't know if the roll is caused by overscan or vertical blank taking too long to run. Until I know that, I don't know which part of the program needs to be optimized. I've got a lot going on in October though, so getting this wrapped up might take a while.

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I did some rearranging that might have fixed the screen roll/jitter problem. However, I need people with Harmony cartridges to run the stress test on their real Atari using a variety of game options in order to see if it fixed it or not. If you have a Harmony please download the Stress Test build and let me know if you experience any screen hiccups.

Edited by SpiceWare
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Thanks! The only "Space Rocks photos" I've seen where like the ones below, so I didn't know if it was seen or not!



Trust me, I said the phrase "yeah, but have you seen Space Rocks?" at least eight times over the weekend, followed by dragging them to it.....

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I have a two quick questions on the behavior of the ship motion and the fired shots.


1- Space Rocks uses a relativistic cannon doesn't it? By that I mean the shots fired always travel at the same velocity regardless if fired forward or backward when the ship is in motion. This is different than Asteroids. In Asteroids the cannon's shot velocity is added to the velocity of the ship. If fired in the direction of travel you have bullets moving at great speed. Conversely, if you get going really fast and do a 180 while coasting, then fire the cannon shots, the shots are almost stationary with very little movement.


2- The ship's motion, and response in a turn. Say you are going full speed straight up, for example. And with friction off, coast for a moment, set the angle or point the the ship's nose at about the 2 o'clock position and turn on the engine. Nearly all vertical velocity stops and you "re-build" your speed again in a new direction. This doesn't happen if you point the ship at 3 o'clock. The 90 degree change happens smoothly. You don't lose speed. And if you are traveling at less than full speed, velocity vectors integrate smoothly at any angle between thrust and direction of travel.


Just wondering if these are features by design or something got overlooked. And noting differences in control behavior between SpaceRocks and Asteroids. I neither like or dislike the current set-up. After all, we can't have the ship going so fast that it escapes from the playfield, we'd be in trouble then!

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Announcing Release Candidate 1!



You can play the Release Candidate ROMs on either Harmony or Stella to provide feedback on bugs.



If you have a Harmony, please also run the Stress Test ROM on your Atari. It starts each wave with 12 asteroids in order to stress the routines. If you noticed any screen jitters or rolls please let me know right away.



Release Candidate 1 ROMs - Harmony or Stella1




Stress Test ROM - Harmony2




1 Requires Stella ver 3.7.1 or later. See first post for instructions on how to reduce flicker.


2while the stress test will run on Stella, it's not useful as a stress test because Stella doesn't emulate how long the ARM processes take to run.

Edited by SpiceWare
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I played stress test into the fourth round of rocks.

Nothing to report, no problems here. Just noticed that there is no attract screen in stress test, I wanted to check my score I think it was 29,000...

I did want to mention that I like when it's very hard and there's an impossible amount of things flying around -- it doesn't slow down one bit. It is amazing it is the nature of the hardware itself that the game can't slow down or the display would fall apart!

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