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Entry 2018: Boot Hill

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I temporary switched Jzintv Launcher to use minigrom and miniexec, and it boot up to the title screen. Yay!

I really like this game.

My thoughts: I only played the zombie mode. I do like the orange background. I thinking the water can be colored either dark blue or sky blue.

The zombie that crumbling should not still be chasing you and seems to block your shot when you're surrounded. Turning the interactive bit off in the zombie's sprite will disable the collision detection. The tile version of the zombie would be a challenge to get around the collision. Maybe have your bullet to knock back the zombie and then they crumble like cookies.

One time the bullet refill doesn't appear, so the guy and I had a stalemate. I guess we won against the zombies and we made peace with each others.

A bit petty thoughts, but you can ignore it:


I have a feeling that the player's tombstone could be half height card. $80 in the y sprite parameter, is the halfheight card 16 pixel high card.

Not sure if the bullet count has to be redraw every frame, but could be drawn upon firing your bullet. The zombie might overwrite it may be the reason to redraw the bullet count.

Kinda scatter brain comments, but my brain is kinda zombied out today.

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I like the idea of the zombies getting knocked back after shot. I'll see about doing that. At least I guess having them no longer stop a bullet might be sufficient too.


I noticed the refill of bullets not happening occasionally. So I was aware that happens sometiimes. I'll track it down. if its a no zombie game it would declare a draw but the zombie game the round can't end til the flashing gunman is also dead.


There isn't any water inthe game . You must mean the sky line area i guess. I kindof like the 2 tone bg for the desert with only the green cactus showing off colour as they are the collidable objects. I might add some not destructable tiles like rocks depending on time.


I'm using the 42kb template so I'm surprised that it would over write any areas . I guess I have too much data in the area ending af 6fff and its over running. I'm moving routines around to see if I can fix it. Thanks for the help.

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added some new scenes

added a more colourful environment later on.

fixed some issues.added 2 ways to aim

-3 buttons each button shoots with up down or straight acrosss

- or 1 button shoot and another button you hold down when you want to change to aim angle

now with up to 10 zombies and 1 bad guys eventually if you survive long enough. Should be much tougher now.


I have attached the rom for review/testing purposes only.


I was able to play it using the SDK launcher (intyrun). I recommend you fix the addressing issues as suggested by nanochess. If you need help with that, just post a question here.


Now, on to some feedback. It occurred to me that yours is perhaps the game I gave the least feedback in the past. I apologize for that, I've just been busy with many things and I guess I missed the updates on this one.


I played it a bit and I must say that the game has really come a long way from the first build I saw a few months back. It is a lot more playable now and feels much smoother than before. I do have some concerns with the game-play.

  • I'm not sure I understand the goal. Is it to see how many enemies I can kill in the allotted time? Or is it to survive the full time without dying? In any case, the focus seems scattershot, which makes the ending a bit abrupt and unsatisfying.
  • Personally, the whole timer mechanic seems odd for this kind of game. It also seems odd that it doesn't reset on every level. For instance, consider how weird it feels to the player to start a new level with only one or two seconds left -- only to have the game end immediately.
  • If you must have a timer, consider extending it by either a bonus or restarting it on every level. You could use the mechanic employed in Marble Madness: You get a specific timer for each level, and the amount left over from the previous one is actually bonus time on the new one. You could alternatively, just add five seconds per spare bullet left in your bandolera.
  • The rock-and-roll song, although tracked very well, seems hilariously out of place in this game -- especially in the title screen, which is the face of the game on which players will form their first impressions. I would take it out to keep the game in theme. (I know that there is a zombie mode, but that's an entire genre onto itself -- and the rock-and-roll song doesn't even go with that either.) It's a good track, keep it for another game. :)
  • The collision detection seems off at times: Sometimes bullets going slightly above or below the sprite register as a collision; sometimes direct hits do not. At one time, the enemy and my man were both at the top of the screen (mixed in with the town graphics), and direct hits to the enemy wouldn't kill him. Sometimes we face each other, shoot at the same time, get hit at the same time, but one of us dies and the other doesn't.
  • Collisions are extremely important in this sort of game, since that's the main mechanic for success and progress. If both my bullet and the enemy bullet hit their targets at the same time, then they should both register as collisions -- unless you want to "freeze-frame" as soon as a death is register and show obviously that the other was still in mid-air. If you allow them to complete their motion, then you should register both deaths.
  • Sometimes when I shoot at a cactus to open a hole to gain access to an enemy on the other side, the second bullet I shoot seems like it goes through, but does not kill the enemy.
  • The 3-button aim is weird. I can handle it on the keyboard while playing in emulation, but I can imagine it being absolutely freaky on the real hand-controller: both top buttons shoot up, the left-bottom button shoots straight, and the right-bottom button shots down. That's going to confuse the heck out of any new player. ;)
  • Perhaps you can try a "hold and aim" mechanic. The following may or may not work, but I offer it as inspiration for you to consider other alternatives:
    • Disc moves player normally
    • When a specific action button is pressed and held down, the disc serves to aim up or down.
    • When the action button is released, the gun shoots.
    • The other action buttons just shoot straight without any special aim.
  • Bug alert:
    • Enter the menu and select #3 "Zombie Mode."
    • Select #7 "Walk Anywhere" (this is disabled, but it is registered with a "click" sound)
    • When you enter the arena, you cannot walk right, only left.
    • If you enter the arena without pressing #7, it works normally.
  • "Zombie Mode" is very cool. Who'd think that cowboys and zombies went so well thematically. :lol: :thumbsup:
  • When I select #3 "Zombie Mode," the voice sounds like it is saying "Zombie Ess" or "Zombie X." Perhaps you need to revise your phrasal allophones.
  • When I kill all the zombies, a message pops-up on the screen (presumably to let me know that I killed them all or something), but it gets cleared immediately, so I cannot read it.
  • The "Game Over" message seems a bit like "programmer debug panel," since it is so dense with information, concentrated in such a small place. I suggest sprucing it up a little bit, perhaps with a fancier "Game Over" screen with the details, or just make the panel bigger and more sparse.
  • The mono-chrome look of every screen is reminiscent of older, more limited machines, and looks out of place on an Intellivision. The Intellivision is capable of much more, consider sprucing up your graphics with judicious use of colour. :)


That's it for now. The game has great potential, and it has the right feel for a truly old-school gem -- especially the "Zombie Mode," which to me seems like a fantastically effective blend of genres. You may wish to consider making that the actual game ("Zombies At Boothill" or "Dawn Of Death At Boothill," to appropriately skid over trademark land-mines :)).


Some of the points above, specifically the ones regarding collisions, are critical in my opinion; but the rest are mostly "spit-and-polish" to make the game feel complete. With only two weeks to go till the end of the contest, you may need to pick and choose what to work on. Remember that polish and production quality can be just as important as game-play when it comes to making an impression on players.


Good luck! :thumbsup:



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ok. moving some routines out of the 5000-6fff area fixed the problem. The rom will now work using regular system or emulator. It was definately over running the 7000-7100 area. So i'll check that out in all furutre versions.


I just make a batch file with this to run it:


The music is not set in stone. I kind of put anything in there as a place holder and might change it later. I just keep hearing the same music constantly so I sometimes change it every so often and will finalize that lastly.


Thanks for the feedback. I'm looking it over to see what I can do. I'm expecting to more polish what I have now rather than add anything new.


jzintv boothill.rom


Edited by digress
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  • 2 weeks later...

Cowboys and zombies. Awesome concept.


Then again, "boot hill" at one point was an expression used in the American West for a cemetary for cowboys who died in battle, so it works IMO. And it's nice of them ol' cowboys coming back for a visit to us. :D

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  • 3 months later...

I haven't. I was working on a colecovision game the last little while.


This actually has probably more than the coleco version as it has 1 additional bg scenario (yellow) and the enemy cowboy actually races you for the reload bullets.


It does however have a number of glitches and some other issues. I'd say 80% sounds about right. I 'm pretty good about finishing things I start and it does work completely now just needs a little refinement.




Hey just wondering if you had done any more work on this game since the contest?

I really like it and was hoping to see it completed.

How close do you think you are compared to your Coleco version? 80% ?


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I probably will. The colecovision version went over well so I guess there would be enough interest here to make a few.


I'll have to have another look at it soon.


I'll need to implement some of the suggestions in the contest results.


Are you planning to release on cartridge? I see you sold some Colecovision versions on etsy?
Put me down for a copy if you are.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I've not finished it but I will. Trying to get better performance was a real issue when I had too many zombies & bad guys & stage coach. I might still add some more things too it.


Perhaps a scrolling town scene with bad guys in windows.


This does look cool. That's for refreshing the thread.

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I am very interested in this game,I would love to buy it on cartridge for the Intellivision.

It looks a little like War of Nerves for the Odyssey 2 from a battlefield perspective and i loved that game!


Plus i have a friend I can play and duel with we would love that. :) :thumbsup:

Or is this a one player only shooter?

Edited by wolfy62
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  • 1 year later...

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