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2 button joystick ?


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I've removed the on-disk obfuscation from Operation Blood, but I can't find a safe place to put a button scanning routine. Since it's not really my kind of game I'm going to find something easier to do instead :)

 

Here's the deobfuscated image in case someone else is willing and able to patch it:

 

Operation Blood (deobfuscated).atr

 

The in-game trigger check routine starts at $F3F5 (in shadow RAM) and is at byte offset $C205 in the .atr file. The main load is in two parts: a big read to $4400-$FFFF from sectors $025-$19C (this is the one that was scrambled on disk) and a smaller one to $0700-$337F from sectors $1ED-$245. The loading routine for the latter is at $569A.

 

There's more loading before the game starts, including a read to $4800-$5699 from $2D1-$2EE, again using the loading routine at $569A. I haven't played far enough to know which other parts of memory are overwritten.

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7 hours ago, Eyvind Bernhardsen said:

I've removed the on-disk obfuscation from Operation Blood, but I can't find a safe place to put a button scanning routine. Since it's not really my kind of game I'm going to find something easier to do instead :)

 

Here's the deobfuscated image in case someone else is willing and able to patch it:

 

Operation Blood (deobfuscated).atr 130.02 kB · 2 downloads

 

The in-game trigger check routine starts at $F3F5 (in shadow RAM) and is at byte offset $C205 in the .atr file. The main load is in two parts: a big read to $4400-$FFFF from sectors $025-$19C (this is the one that was scrambled on disk) and a smaller one to $0700-$337F from sectors $1ED-$245. The loading routine for the latter is at $569A.

 

There's more loading before the game starts, including a read to $4800-$5699 from $2D1-$2EE, again using the loading routine at $569A. I haven't played far enough to know which other parts of memory are overwritten.

thanks for the work, although I am not very expert I found a zone that does not over write in the game $A000 at least in level 1 ?

Captura.thumb.PNG.afa24087af6d58a18ccf7bdad465c126.PNG

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20 hours ago, ascrnet said:

thanks for the work, although I am not very expert I found a zone that does not over write in the game $A000 at least in level 1 ?

 

I get a bunch of writes in A0xx on level 1 when I collect items. A000-A040 and A100-A1CF look untouched, but I can't be sure that any bytes in that area won't get overwritten on later levels. I like to see huge swaths of zeroes before I trust that a game doesn't use a block of memory for anything.

 

I'm not sure if Altirra has the option to count the number of accesses to every memory location, that'd be super handy to find out if there's anywhere that is (ideally) loaded from disk before the start of the game and (definitely) never overwritten or used for anything else. But I wouldn't be able to use it myself, because you'd have to play through the whole game and I can't even get past the first level ?

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On 9/21/2020 at 2:26 PM, Eyvind Bernhardsen said:

I get a bunch of writes in A0xx on level 1 when I collect items. A000-A040 and A100-A1CF look untouched, but I can't be sure that any bytes in that area won't get overwritten on later levels. I like to see huge swaths of zeroes before I trust that a game doesn't use a block of memory for anything.

 

I'm not sure if Altirra has the option to count the number of accesses to every memory location, that'd be super handy to find out if there's anywhere that is (ideally) loaded from disk before the start of the game and (definitely) never overwritten or used for anything else. But I wouldn't be able to use it myself, because you'd have to play through the whole game and I can't even get past the first level ?

Of course it's not enough to be sure, I got to level 2 and it has the same behavior.

 

I was checking $C000 and I see that they turned off the OS to add code to the game there.?

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  • 1 month later...

Anyone got an ArcadeR joystick from RetroRadionics?

https://retroradionics.co.uk/index.html#!/ArcadeR-9-pin-ATARI-standard-Joystick/p/168982750/category=0

 

I've modded mine to work with this three button mod. I will add a third button at some point, there is a spare header for the third button but for now pushing the function button to swap button 2 between fire 2 and fire 3 is good enough.

 

IMG_3918.jpeg

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On 11/4/2020 at 4:15 PM, Mr Robot said:

Anyone got an ArcadeR joystick from RetroRadionics?

https://retroradionics.co.uk/index.html#!/ArcadeR-9-pin-ATARI-standard-Joystick/p/168982750/category=0

 

I've modded mine to work with this three button mod. I will add a third button at some point, there is a spare header for the third button but for now pushing the function button to swap button 2 between fire 2 and fire 3 is good enough.

 

IMG_3918.jpeg

The ArcadeR has a solder bridge to the right of the cable.  By default it's bridged to Atari, meaning that button 2 and 3 are connected to GND when they're pressed.  If that bridge is swapped to C64, the buttons connect to VCC instead.

 

Would that mod be enough, without the need for the additional resistors?

Edited by Total Eclipse
Typo fix
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  • 2 months later...
On 11/4/2020 at 1:15 PM, Mr Robot said:

Anyone got an ArcadeR joystick from RetroRadionics?

https://retroradionics.co.uk/index.html#!/ArcadeR-9-pin-ATARI-standard-Joystick/p/168982750/category=0

 

I've modded mine to work with this three button mod. I will add a third button at some point, there is a spare header for the third button but for now pushing the function button to swap button 2 between fire 2 and fire 3 is good enough.

 

IMG_3918.jpeg

Thanks for sharing this adaptation, I put it in the repository.

On 11/9/2020 at 1:15 PM, Total Eclipse said:

Would that mod be enough, without the need for the additional resistors?

330 ohms resistors are necessary, without them all the adapted kits will not work.

 

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OK so there is only room for two standard buttons in the Competition Pro sized case. on the front of the ArcadeR there are two function buttons, one of those (the left one) turns autofire on/off on the left hand button, the other button switches the right button between button two and button three and back. 

 

The ArcadeR comes with a Y cable that you can fit to make both buttons be Fire 1 and the above mod will allow you to have 3 buttons. If you want you can add another button (if you can find somewhere to put it) and plug it into the port on the PCB labeled '3' then the second function button is no longer used. 

 

If you don't do the above mod and you don't use the Y cable, button 2 does nothing by default.

 

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2 hours ago, Mr Robot said:

the other [function] button switches the right button between button two and button three and back.

...

If you don't do the above mod and you don't use the Y cable, button 2 does nothing by default.

 

 

These two statements seem to contradict one another.  If I believe the first statement, out of the box the right button is switchable between B2 and B3.  If I believe the second statement, out of the box the right button does nothing.

Edited by FifthPlayer
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Ah that would be because you have forgotten that there are more computers in the world than Atari’s. Some computers/consoles with DB9 joystick plugs support 2 or 3 buttons by default. 
 

out of the box for Atari users the second button does nothing. You can use the Y cable to make it the same button as the first button or you can do the mod to get three buttons. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 1/24/2021 at 3:14 PM, Mr Robot said:

The ArcadeR comes with a Y cable that you can fit to make both buttons be Fire 1 and the above mod will allow you to have 3 buttons. If you want you can add another button (if you can find somewhere to put it) and plug it into the port on the PCB labeled '3' then the second function button is no longer used.

 

Mine has arrived, I am trying to install the Y cable to make both buttons be Fire 1.  Does anybody have advice on removing the existing cables from the fire buttons?  The crimp tabs are VERY tightly attached to the lugs on the buttons and it seems like its easy to damage them if I use force.

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30 minutes ago, Mr Robot said:

Success! 

 

I got the old cables off, damaging one of them in the process.  I installed the new cables, then tried to screw the case back together.  The case didn't seal cleanly; I reopened the case and saw the new cables got caught in the case seams and were damaged as well, by the force imposed by the screws.  The cables are almost split in half.

 

I'm contacting RR to ask for a replacement cable, but this affirms why hardware mods of any sort are not for me.  I can't even install a wire without damaging it beyond repair.

Edited by FifthPlayer
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4 hours ago, Mr Robot said:

If you want to mail me your stick I can fix it for you and mail it back, probably before the Y cable makes it from China.  I could do the 3 button mod instead if you'd rather.

Thank you for your kind offer. Given the costs of shipping, I'm not sure it's practical sending it to you for repair. 

 

I managed to connect the single undamaged cable I have to one of the buttons for single button operation.  I hope I can get some kind of replacement Y-cable from RetroRadionics.  If you know of a place where I can obtain a spare, I'd be appreciative.

Edited by FifthPlayer
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@Mr Robot As awesome as this joystick looks, I'm concerned about ergonomics of the two buttons.

1) For your own use, do you set up the buttons on the top, or the buttons on the right?  (buttons on top corresponds more easily to Joy2B mappings, but buttons on the right presumably doesn't require an awkward claw grip around the stick?)

2) How did you end up mapping the buttons?

3) Is it feasible at all to swap out the autofire latches for a regular button (same size) that could then be hooked up to any of the button headers?

4) Is the joystick's manufacturer considering adding native Joy2B+ support for a future board revision?

 

(All of the Joy2B mods I made assumed button 2 would be on the right, or at least triggered with the finger to the right - this is particularly important for jump + fire actions)

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It has similar ergonomics to a compy pro. button one (on mine) sits under my thumb where it would on a cx40. The other button is inconveniently out of reach which was never an issue with the compy pro it was the same fire button for left handed people. 

 

It is possible to dismantle the stick, rotate the inner switches by 90' and have the stick with the buttons on the side but I find that weird in use and the cable is in the way, it may not be if you use the stick on a table rather than in your hand. 

 

For the most part, I find that button 2 is used far less than button 1 in most games and reaching for it isn't a problem, button 3 requiring a button press to enable and then a reach is very awkward and not really practical. 

 

There is a usb board in development that will make the two lower buttons addressable/programmable as well but that is still in development (by a fan of the sticks) the usb board also has a pin header for the dsub9 so you can use the usb to program your atari joystick.

 

No one is planning to build in the Multifire mod, its added cost that most people don't need.

 

Not all joysticks are ideal for all people and all games

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Ah, alas; I was hoping the other button was a bit more reachable.  It may be worth trying the sideways approach for tabletop-only purposes, though...

 

@Mr Robot By any strange chance, I don't suppose you'd happen to know where the ArcadeR joystick maker sourced those 9-wire joystick cords?

They look quite sturdy and properly shaped, with thick cords, a properly shaped plug (no screw brackets), and a stress relief that can be fitted into a plastic joystick case - I'd be interested in getting a few to Joy2B-ize my Wico Command Control and Quickshot joysticks, since they look like good drop-in replacements that'll fit neatly into the existing cases...

 

(and no, those "atari joystick extender cables" available on various parts on the internet don't seem like a good option, per this thread...  even if they were, it'd be nice to have ones with stress reliefs built in)

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3 hours ago, Bobo Cujo said:

Ah, alas; I was hoping the other button was a bit more reachable.  It may be worth trying the sideways approach for tabletop-only purposes, though...

 

@Mr Robot By any strange chance, I don't suppose you'd happen to know where the ArcadeR joystick maker sourced those 9-wire joystick cords?

They look quite sturdy and properly shaped, with thick cords, a properly shaped plug (no screw brackets), and a stress relief that can be fitted into a plastic joystick case - I'd be interested in getting a few to Joy2B-ize my Wico Command Control and Quickshot joysticks, since they look like good drop-in replacements that'll fit neatly into the existing cases...

 

(and no, those "atari joystick extender cables" available on various parts on the internet don't seem like a good option, per this thread...  even if they were, it'd be nice to have ones with stress reliefs built in)

I understand you, I used these sega gamepad to disassemble and remove the cable for several projects including the Joy 2B+ and MultiJoy.?

gpsega.thumb.png.bd5b9b13af37e763a58366a847650a8f.png

multijoy.thumb.png.deb2f4365508183548362ff0f03c731f.png

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

I ended up getting an ArcadeR after all (it took about 30 days + order processing time from China, for those wondering).

 

Here's a picture of my Joy2B mod (with the newer 1.5c board revision).  It turns out there's easier (larger) solder points that can be used instead of the really tiny wires on the ribbon cable plug:

1465805078_ArcadeR1.5cEasierJoy2BSolderPoints.thumb.jpg.f2a65e54c48f934585baf28c4ed0cd4f.jpg

 

Essentially, it's taking advantage of the through-hole points for the Button 2/Button 3 selector switch (which directly connect to pins 5/9), as well as the C64/Atari jumper (which directly connects to Pin 7).

I'd imagine this also works on the 1.5b board revision, for the same reason...

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@Mr Robot As for Joy2B ergonomics, I'm happy to report that it wasn't anywhere near as bad as I originally thought they'd be:

  • My right pinky works surprisingly well for triggering Button 2.
  • ...even in games where Button 2 is used extensively (Dreadnaught Factor, Hawkquest, Conan, Moon Patrol Redux, ...)
  • Even reaching around for button 2 with my left index finger isn't that bad - the joystick shaft cover is helpful here.

I have a leaf-switch-based original Competition Pro (which I hate), and despite resembling it, the ArcadeR is clearly superior in button accessibility/responsiveness/joystick feel/etc.

 

The biggest issue with 2-buttoning an ArcadeR, oddly enough, is actually the quality of the Sanwa clone buttons - they don't like being pressed on the edges, and sometimes they don't quite press cleanly.

I'd imagine that real Sanwa buttons (known for their high sensitivity) would do wonders to fix this, however - has anyone tried this, and if so, how hard is it to remove the existing buttons without breaking anything?

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