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Ant Attack on TI99


Astharot

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The TI has exactly the same graphics resolution as the ZX Spectrum (256x192) so yes, it could re-produce it. Since there's not much colour, it would be a good candidate for one of the hybrid graphics modes. Since ants and players sometimes have to move behind objects sprites probably wouldn't be useful here.

 

The issue (as always) would be rendering the frames quickly enough. On the spectrum, the video memory is directly mapped into the CPU space, which gives it an advantage.

 

I do think it could be done though, yes. It's out of my league, however!

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I'm not sure the original Ant Attack had shadows on the ground. The picture Rasmus produced looks like the picture (Google) from the 2002 Ant Attack Visualiser.

 

We have done a few experiments with isometric graphics, and it seemed possible with that "32 colorset graphic mode" (graphic mode 1 or ordinary graphic mode ?).

 

atariventure.png

 

I looked at a Ant Attack map (cropped and imported into Magellan) and things were offset a bit here and there, so more characters and modes as Rasmus suggest is necessary. I think we could adjust things slightly to use fewer characters and still have a very nice lookalike and playable map. However, - I think I read an article somewhere, might very well have been in retrogamer, about how the map was stored as heights, very useful for the in game control routines, and then the isometric look was created on the fly, more or less, since, as far as I recall, it was "only" revealing "new" areas while scrolling - and that not sync'd with frame update.

 

;)

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He assembled the program by hand??? Holy Sh**t! Just a step above using flip switches... I created a couple of years ago a simple program editor for the ELF computer (actually a replica called the Membership Card), and it was a little over 60 bytes, and I had to hand assemble it and enter it using flip switches and that was absolute torture. I can't imaging something like Ant Attack being hand assembled. I am duly impressed!

Edited by Vorticon
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Most of the commercial ZX Spectrum games (up until around 83/84) were written that way! The tools simply didn't exist. Check out Wheelie for the zx spectrum on YouTube. Written as mnemonics on graph paper, then hand converted to hex, then typed into the spectrum as a Basic program. For bug hunting you're pretty much reduced to hunches and guesswork. True bedroom coding at its best!

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I still think that Ian Bell and David Braben produced just about the best piece of coding given the limitations they were working with. Elite on the BBC micro was effectively produced using 22k of available memory and gave so much back.(also converted to just about every 8 and 16 bit system-except Atari and TI :mad: ).

 

Open gameplay, 3D space combat and exploration, trading, secret missions, 8 galaxies each containing 256 worlds etc etc.

 

Also really good to see that David Braben is working on an up to date version which is called "Elite-Dangerous", it is already at beta stage and you can see various demos on youtube-the game is stunning and is the only thing that has convinced me to buy a new PC.

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