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New game ideas to motivate Lynx homebrewers


Cammy
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How many of us are excited about our new copies of Alpine Games? I've wanted this game forever, but I was never really keen on the cartridge or packaging it used to come in. So I am absolutely in love with this re-release with the genuine cardboard box, regular sized manual and awesome little plastic cartridge-back. Not since I received Zaku have I been so happy about getting a new homebrew game (and I like to get them for a variety of retro systems). Finally Alpine Games can occupy my Lynx games shelf along with the rest of my Lynx game collection, and I can enjoy this incredible game for myself. And as keen as I am to play new games on old systems, I'm even more enthusiastic to create new ones!

 

So, let's have a discussion about what we can all do to bring about great new games for the Lynx. Many of us aren't programmers (or at least not Lynx programmers) but are still very enthusiastic for new Lynx games and have our own skills we can use to help each other out. Here are some of my ideas:

 

Starting a whole new game from scratch and pushing through to completion is a huge job considering the limited audience who will get to play the game in the end, so why not target multiple systems when starting a new game for the Lynx? More people will get to play (and even buy) your game. There are considerable markets for homebrew games on many other classic systems, some with similar hardware and limitations to the Lynx. If learning to code for another system isn't something you have time for then we can approach fellow homebrew developers who already know their respective favourite systems, bring them into the team, share the code and assets and have them port the game to another console or computer.

 

If you like to code for the Lynx but haven't got a particular game in mind yet, why not look to the other homebrew communities for some recent or upcoming games to port to the Lynx? Others are producing games for the Commodore 64, Atari consoles and computers, NES and TurboGrafx16 and they all share the same processor family, so maybe the code is more portable from these systems. We have artists and musicians in the Lynx community who can work on converting the graphics, music and sound to work on the Lynx.

 

Do you perhaps just want to attempt a smaller programming challenge at first? Coding your own basic mini-game, for example? How about we combine our efforts and all code an event each for a multi-event sports game in the tradition of California Games and Alpine Games? Maybe you already have some code lying around for something you could modify into a simple sports event that can be added to a compilation of other events following a similar theme. I'm sure with enough variety and a bit of polish another game like this would be welcomed by the community, especially considering how quickly Alpine Games sold out!

 

Let's combine our talent and bring about a Lynx renaissance!

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I'd really love to work with a Lynx developer to bring the game I'm working on for the Amiga to the Lynx as well. I intentionally made all of the graphics in a small scale so enough action would be viewable on the Lynx's low resolution screen, sticking with 16 colours and a 12bit palette. I guess it's like a combination of games like Ghouls 'n' Ghosts and Wonderboy in Monsterland, not highly original but the Lynx could still do with more games like this.

 

So imagine it would look like this, only cropped to a quarter of the size of this whole image, so this is just showing four screens-worth of the level map.

 

2e5jz1y.jpg

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Starting a whole new game from scratch and pushing through to completion is a huge job considering the limited audience who will get to play the game in the end, so why not target multiple systems when starting a new game for the Lynx? More people will get to play (and even buy) your game. There are considerable markets for homebrew games on many other classic systems, some with similar hardware and limitations to the Lynx. If learning to code for another system isn't something you have time for then we can approach fellow homebrew developers who already know their respective favourite systems, bring them into the team, share the code and assets and have them port the game to another console or computer.

 

 

Hi Cammy, after the 7DRL competition I got the idea of making the tgi graphics library more portable across all cc65 platforms. Unfortunately the reception of the cc65 community was not so enthusiastic.

 

I believe that it is easier to start with something created on a top-system like the Amiga and scale it down for other platforms like the Lynx.

 

By the way Cammy, your default palette turned out to be quite expressive. Here is the latest screenshot of Stardreamer using only the default colors.

 

post-2099-0-32909800-1436091724_thumb.png

Edited by karri
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If you like to code for the Lynx but haven't got a particular game in mind yet, why not look to the other homebrew communities for some recent or upcoming games to port to the Lynx? Others are producing games for the Commodore 64, Atari consoles and computers, NES and TurboGrafx16 and they all share the same processor family, so maybe the code is more portable from these systems. We have artists and musicians in the Lynx community who can work on converting the graphics, music and sound to work on the Lynx.

 

It's not ideas that are a problem. Ideas are cheap and everyone has them. It's the time and effort that goes into making a game that is the hard part. The fact that we're making it for such a small audience doesn't help either, since the pay-off is quite small (but special in its own way).

 

What we really need is ways to make things easier. The tutorials from LX.NET are a great example of something that will help a lot of developers out. The developer/flash cartridge from Lynxman is awesome. CC65 is making it a lot easier to step in as well.

 

For example, one of the things I'd like to see is more information on Audio (hoping LX.NET is working on some tutorial material for this).

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The biggest issue is the coding. It's not easy to do codes.

 

As someone mentioned, idea are dime a dozen.

 

I could probably make some graphics that are possible on Lynx.

 

Someone might be able to make music and sfx that works on Lynx

 

Base code to play on Lynx and put together graphic and sound takes a lot of work and imitate understanding of Lynx's hardware.

 

I can barely understand ASM and my best achievement is a single screen state image on a 2600 with cycling color. I can't do shit with sound because I am deaf and I wouldn't be able to tell if the sound I produced are the right kind or if it's random junk like bunch of toddlers with frying pans and spoons. (video on 2600 is actually much harder because you have to manually control h-sync and v-sync as well as length of a single line to avoid video rolling or tearing)

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Starting a whole new game from scratch and pushing through to completion is a huge job considering the limited audience who will get to play the game in the end, so why not target multiple systems when starting a new game for the Lynx? More people will get to play (and even buy) your game. There are considerable markets for homebrew games on many other classic systems, some with similar hardware and limitations to the Lynx. If learning to code for another system isn't something you have time for then we can approach fellow homebrew developers who already know their respective favourite systems, bring them into the team, share the code and assets and have them port the game to another console or computer.

 

Part of the charm is making it a system exclusive. If I were going to develop a new game for multiple systems anyways, I don't think I would really bother with the Lynx due to limitations. Plus ports and cross-platform games may work but I think its best to have one solid platform/game than multiple-platforms and one half assed game or more time devoted to porting it to different systems than working on the game itself. I would love to hire a small team to make multiple games for both the Lynx and Jaguar but the reality is, not even at minimum wage would I ever be able to cover their costs. It's a love of labor and more of an art. I don't really see anyone making games for these older systems for any sort of money and outside of just that, people have bills to pay. I'm thankful for the Duranik team and others that do little things from time to time, even if they are 10 year apart releases. The quality of Alpine Games shines.

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Personally I would love to see something like Scorched Earth on the Lynx. If I ever get the courage I might try to learn coding for the lynx and give it a try. But it would be fun both with comlynx or just passing the lynx around.

Edited by Nismorack
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I think Karris new carts are going to boost the dev scene soon! I've been pretty motivated to get back to the Lynx with the recent LCD mod, and 16 in 1 etc, but being able to distribute physical copies at an affordable cost really is motivation for any one wanting to work with the Lynx. We won't make thousands but the thought of being able to pay for some soft / hardware used for development by selling some carts really is a driver. Plus it's always nice to see a physical release of your work.

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