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Tron Light Cycles for Colecovision - Work in progress


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I've been working on the Tron Light Cycles game basically because Toby at Collectorvision asked me if I was willing to work on it. This is a game I've always wanted to make and now that I've gotten the hard part out of the way, it's safe to say it is going to happen. I've been working on this project for under a week at this point and I've run into some issues that I need answered by the Colecovision community.

You see, the arcade version's screen seems to have had a larger vertical play area than what the CV seems to have. I want to make the game look as close to the original as I can, but I don't want to sacrifice making the board too small. Here are some examples of what I'm talking about. Here are 3 layouts I've created.

Layout 1 (Most similar to the way the Arcade looks)

Layout 1

Layout 2 (More room and 2 lines of text at the top)

layout 2

Layout 3 (Most possible room and 1 line of text at the top)

3 Max Room

Understand, I can make an ARCADE mode and a Coleco or Advanced mode that will be larger and could have more areas to choose from than just the 1 from the Arcade. Regardless of the choices, I'm still planning to have an Advanced mode that will have more obstacles, areas, and perhaps powerups of some kind.
Please let me know how you guys want me to go about this.

A. Arcade mode use Layout 1, Advanced mode use Layout 2.
B. Arcade mode use Layout 1, Advanced mode use Layout 3.
C. Arcade and Advanced mode use Layout 2.
D. Arcade and Advanced mode use Layout 3.
E. Other ideas.

This game will have the option to play 1P vs 2P or 1P vs CPU.


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I would also go the route of Option D. IMHO, most retro-arcade games have a vertically biased monitor set up, so it is difficult to faithfully reproduce such games on a retro-console. For the sake of having fun gameplay, I would ditch the arcade aesthetics and go with what actually works the best from a gameplay and programing standpoint….in this case, I would think that option D would make the most sense.


Best of luck with this project! I can't wait to see the final product! :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

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I choose (E): Use Layout 3, but place the starting points of the light cycles on the left and right edges of the screen, rather than the top and bottom edges. That way, you can duplicate the arcade experience in a certain way (by putting enough distance between the starting points of the player and enemies) and your game will also be immediately distinguishable from the official arcade game.


It's too bad you can't implement the other levels of the Tron arcade game, but hey, it's better than nothing at all. It will be especially worth it if you add lots of little extras to the light cycle game. :)


Lastly, a suggestion: Implement a co-op mode, where player 1 and 2 start on one side of the screen, and 2 or more blue enemy cycles start on the other side. Then you can reproduce the movie experience. ;)

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I was thinking of putting the bikes on the Left and the Right as well. Layout 3 seems to be the most popular so I may just go with that for both Arcade and Enhanced modes. I like the co-op mode idea as well, but I'll have to use my custom flicker code from Tank Challenge so it will work since each bike is 2 sprites for the 2 colors. :)

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I would go with Option D - Layout 3 and like the suggestions that Pixelboy has shared.


BTW, why exactly are you limiting the game to just the light cycles stage? Is is due to trying to keep the game at a max of 32K so as not to have to venture into using the MegaCart PCB and bank-switching coding? The tank maze level seems like it would be easy enough to add by drawing from your Tank Challenge game ;) . The other two levels from the arcade game would be a little more challenging due to the spinner control, but one is a vertical shooter while the other is similar to a Breakout game.


After thinking about it, the light cycles stage is the best one anyway! :-D

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I worked on a version of the TRON light cycles game in the past for a different system, and from experience I'd say definitely go with option B. Then you'd be offering a similar experience to the arcade machine as well as the option to play on a larger grid is the user so desires.


Good work on the color choices. You already have something that looks quite similar to the arcade machine.


Note: Be sure to allocate extra time to the A.I. of the enemy bikes. Otherwise, you'll end up with very repetitive gameplay at the higher levels with only speed as the variable factor (which isn't terribly exciting). As well, if you can actually make use of sampled audio on the CV somehow, the TRON machine can be set to audio test mode for easy sound recording.

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Instead of quoting, I'll just try to respond to everyone here.

1) I think for the Arcade mode, I will go with Layout 2 so I can have the 2 lines of text at the top, but still have more playable area than layout 1 fails to offer. Layout 3 will be for the Enhanced mode.

2) The scrollable area sounds good in theory, however, since this game could potentially have 2 players vs 2 computer players, that would be quite a stretch to accomplish with a bike split screen. I'll just keep the screen locked, no scrolling for now, but I like the concept.


3) I thought about making the entire game, but honestly, for me, the bike game and perhaps the tank game were my favorites. Mainly the problem is the 32Kb limit for a FULL Tron game. Also, by making just the Light Cycles game, I can create a bunch of levels, powerups, etc. that the original didn't have for the Enhanced mode. I'll try to keep the powerups so that they are not corny or boring. One of my thoughts is a weapon that, when touched, shoots a temporary wide light beam to the both sides of the cycle. The Beam will destroy anything in its path including light beams....not the outside wall though. Another idea in the enhanced mode, is if you make the enemy bike hit the wall, it will leave the wall broken open (like in the movie). If you drive into the opening in the wall, it will display text quoting from the movie and you win the level(or the game?)...perhaps, you have to evade tanks after that to win the game???....just thoughts.


4) A.I. I'll make sure to study up on YouTube videos, my own testing against the arcade game and whatever else to make probably several different A.I.'s to keep the replayability factor of the game good. Nebulon, I haven't gotten too far into the levels against the computer, so I'm not sure what you mean by the TRON machine can be set to sound recording.


5) If there are any legal implications for making the game called Tron Light Cycles....perhaps we could just call it Light Cycles?

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