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Work In Progress: "Bentley Bear: Crystal Quest"


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Hi Guys:


This is my most ambitious project yet. My first 144K game.


I've been working on this off and on since before Christmas, and tirelessly for about two or three months now. I got the idea when I wanted to work on a sort of 'Pitfall III', but that developed into this when I started reading the 'Wonderboy on the 7800' thread and saw the excellent work PAC-MAN-RED does with graphics. I've requested the great work jwierer does with his level editors (which have also helped me greatly in the past), and along with kenfused have has brainstorms with all involved.


My goal is to have it completed (or at least most of it) by the CGExpo so I can show it there running with the XM (which means I have to work on sound as well - at the moment there isn't any). The basic synopsis, is that the Witch Berthilda has stolen 5 jewels and it's up to Bentley to retrieve them. When all is said and done, there will be 40 levels - 8 Round for each Main Level. I currently have the first two Main Levels done (1-1 through 2-8 ). You battle with Berthilda herself at the end of each Main Level (i.e. 1-8, 2-8, etc.), and get one of the jewels back when you 'defeat' her.


This is what I need to work on:

  • Levels 3-1 through 5-8 (and possibly a 'secret' level as well) ;)
  • Sound
  • Main Screen (splash screen / attract mode) - I still need to make a cool title screen
  • Slowdown issues at certain points (I most likely need to make my code more efficient)
  • Playing with the idea of 'warp' zones
  • Possibly using the HSC in an unusual way - save games... This however is not set in stone.
  • Audio (and possibly visual) warning when the invincibility hat is wearing off

The enemies get more difficult as you encounter new ones.


Enemies (touching any of them is death) ranging from easiest to toughest:

  • Tree - Moves toward you slowly, doesn't do anything unexpected.
  • Worm - Runs toward you, periodically jumping.
  • Skeleton - Moves a little faster, drops from the sky and is able to jump up to higher ground.
  • Bee Swarm - Moves along the top of the screen (can be easily missed if not paying attention), drops down when directly over you.
  • Ghost - Floats toward you in a wave-like pattern. Vertically tracks, albeit slowly.
  • Zombie - Moves slowly, only jewel hits to the head will register. Can reverse direction if hitting a wall.
  • Floating Head - Like the flaming skulls in DOOM, will float slowly, randomly zipping toward the player. Vertically tracks as well.
  • Coyote - Runs quickly toward you, and if he is close enough will try to 'claw' you. The 'claw' will kill the player as well. He will also try to jump over your thrown jewels.
  • Knights - Red, Tan, and Green - Increase in speed, and frequency of attack. Will slash at you with their sword when close enough. This will also kill the player. They will back up quickly to avoid your thrown jewels.
  • Purple Blob - Accelerates as they approach the player. If passed, they will reverse direction and accelerate toward you from behind. Also vertically tracks the player
  • Witch - The 'Boss' and the most difficult. Will move in a wave like pattern in place, until she decides to attack the player. Then she will zip toward you. If she passes you without killing you, she will back up and start again. Vertically tracks the player. In later levels, she will become quicker and throw fireballs as well.... and may have another surprise as well. ;)


  • Honey Jar - Gives health and points.
  • White Jewel - Gives the player a weapon. Hit 'B' button to throw white jewels.
  • Green Jewel - Doubles the power of whatever weapon you have in your hand.
  • Red Jewel - Twice as powerful as the white jewel.
  • Magic Hat - Invincibility (for a time)



Please let me know about colors (especially PAL), degree of difficulty, etc. As I work on this, I will not post the entire game until after the show (I don't want to spoil anything). :)

I just hope I can finish it in time - the show is only 6 weeks away.


Thanks, Guys




P.S. - Those of you who have seen the demo, will note that the Parallax scrolling is not used in every level - only the ones that require it.


EDIT - The 'BINS' were the wrong size, due to the 'dd' command appending to the existing file instead of overwriting it :ponder:





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Phenomenal would be an understatement to describe this Bob. Absolutely awesome; good luck with making your deadline, but don't kill yourself over it. As always, thank you for the generosity of sharing this with the community. The electronic copy is always greatly appreciated, and of course I want to purchase a cart when the time comes for physical distribution :)

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Gameplay quick note...Not sure if it is MESS or ProSystem which is reversed mapped regarding button layout (I do believe MESS has it wrong).


For me I believe:

Running/firing should be the 1st button (Left button)

Jumping the 2nd button (Right button)


Same as what you would find for example on the NES in Super Mario Bros.


As it works now, under MESS the default button layout follows the above for Bentley, but under Prosystem it is reversed (Again, I do believe MESS is incorrect and ProSystem is correct). In fact, I remapped MESS to use the leftmost button as button 2 and the rightmost button as button 1 for all my various controllers when using it for 7800 emulation to correct what I believe is its reversed mapping of buttons for that system.


Regardless, in emulation it is no big deal (As noted above, you can assign whatever button(s) you want to controller function), but on the real thing - especially any who use an Atari 7800 gamepad or hack/modified NES one (Or even the NES Advantage Joystick), the button layout will impact the gameplay considerably (IMHO).


Perhaps, if possible Bob, there can be an option to toggle buttons 1 & 2 regarding their respective function. If not, perhaps a consensus can be taken on what button should perfom what function(s). Sorry, if I'm making a big deal out of a perhaps minor thing, but I don't want you to end up shipping this out to many people, only for many to be accustomed or expecting a different button layout function.

Edited by Trebor
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