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Albert - new colorful game for Atari


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8 hours ago, adam242 said:

 

Here's a modified version which bypasses the PAL flag check. Not tested on real hardware yet, but works fine in Altirra (both NTSC-50 and straight NTSC).

 

Fantastic game! No disrespect to original programmers.

 

Albert (no PAL check).xex 103.86 kB · 27 downloads

THANK YOU !!!!!!!

The original would fail to run on my 600XL with Sophia RGB (and AntiX set to PAL ANTIC) because of this stupid check.
This version runs perfectly on it !!!!

(By the way, when I switch AntiX to NTSC it still runs, but obviously the colors change (not to their advantage) and there's an occasional glitch on Albert. Worst though its that it is a lot _slower_ and speed varies a bit. But at least you can get an idea of the game.  I didn't notice any other graphics issues....

Now I need to find Bomb Jack and Pang! again.... :)

Edited by Level42
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6 hours ago, BIGHMW said:

Yeah but still ANY port of it is great this clearly would've destroyed Super Mario or at least have given the XEGS a significant advantage having this as a pack-in game or at least market it as formidable competition for Super Mario Bros., then how would Nintendo counter THAT??? This could've very easily set up a serious XEGS vs. NES rivalry for sure, and unlike the old 5200 vs. ColecoVision rivalry from back in my days in 1983, Atari would've won HANDS DOWN!!!

Hmmm, although I will still defend the A8 platform against any ignorant guy who has never actually played it or seen demos on it, I have mostly left my "platform battle days" behind.

However: with all respect: Albert looks insanely good for game for a 1979 released piece of hardware. BUT..... the gameplay can in NO WAY compete to the complex, fun and challenging game design of SMB.
Game design is not the same thing as fantastic graphics. I learned that when I first played Dragon's Lair in the arcade: I was AWED by the graphics but after two tries (with double the price of regular games at that time) I walked away, completely disappointed and thinking: if this is the way games are going to go, I'm done with it.

To make Albert compete with SMB it would need a LOT of work because, fun as it is, the gameplay is rather one dimensional. Apart from "clearing the screen" there are no (sub)goals, there's no way to kill enemies etc. This is all _fine_ but it makes comparing it to SMB rather pointless. it's just a whole different game.

Edited by Level42
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6 hours ago, BIGHMW said:

Yeah but still ANY port of it is great this clearly would've destroyed Super Mario or at least have given the XEGS a significant advantage having this as a pack-in game or at least market it as formidable competition for Super Mario Bros., then how would Nintendo counter THAT??? This could've very easily set up a serious XEGS vs. NES rivalry for sure, and unlike the old 5200 vs. ColecoVision rivalry from back in my days in 1983, Atari would've won HANDS DOWN!!!

I think more importantly that if this had arrived back then, all software houses would have had to up their game to

be able to sell their wares, just think of the games that could have been produced, this is just awesome.

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Just had a play, certainly a damn pretty game with great gfx work and its smooth as silk, I also would not compare it to SMB, this is a 'clear em up', SMB is a whole different platformer. it would be unfair to Albert to compare it, its not seeking to be SMB.

 

I welcome the simplicity of the game play hardened with the challenge of the clear....Great mix..

 

Thank you for the game...

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23 hours ago, DrVenkman said:

Absolutely gorgeous game on my PAL 1088XLD, but it won't lead via FujiNet. However, it loaded up fine from the CF card via the XEL-CF Loader in the BIOS.

Just tried it on mine and it loads fine from my internal fujinet at HSIO 6, there is some loading junk on the screen as it loads but once the Albert screen appears it works perfectly from then on. 

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Just now, Mr Robot said:

Just tried it on mine and it loads fine from my internal fujinet at HSIO 6, there is some loading junk on the screen as it loads but once the Albert screen appears it works perfectly from then on. 

Hmmm … it flat would not load on my XLD no matter what I tried, even turning off the PBI BIOS and trying to load at stock speeds. I’ll try again tonight to see if I can figure out the problem on my end. 

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10 hours ago, TGB1718 said:

I think more importantly that if this had arrived back then, all software houses would have had to up their game to

be able to sell their wares, just think of the games that could have been produced, this is just awesome.

I think it's been pointed out before that while a game with these visuals was possible in the '80s, it is modern development tools and PC-hosted development (think: source-level debugging of assembler in Altirra, PC-hosted art tools)  that make many sophisticated games like this feasible.  Also, a lot of those software houses were in a struggle between business demands (think: time to market, self-imposed 48K RAM/88K disk limit to reach the biggest audience) and the desire to produce the most impressive product.  Today's game makers pretty much don't have these problems, they can focus entirely on the presentation.

Edited by FifthPlayer
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Wow amazing game.  All sorts of possible game improvements I'm sure are possible.  Like a gold DDT spray that stuns the wasps individually or together.  A crawl option.   Then a slow down potion for the beetles..  even better different type/colour of beetles on the same line a horizontal screen apart.  More vertical climbing as well and areas with no gems but the platforms closer together so you can jump without ladders.

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1 hour ago, 777ismyname said:

Wow. Saw this popup on Saberman's YouTube channel and had to try it. This further cements my desire to make sure  my upcoming full bells and whistles Atari 8 bit machine is a PAL machine.

I switched over to Antic PAL hybrid about 15 years ago, and finally went full PAL on my 1200XL four years ago after my 1084S monitor stopped working. I then got an 800, and it was going to be my NTSC machine. But my 1200XL was down for repairs and I realized how limited I was with my NTSC 800, when many of my favorite games these days are PAL. So I converted it to PAL as well. I was thinking about turning my 1200XL back into an NTSC, but there are only a select few games that the slight bump in speed helps, like the Lucasfilm games. But I'd already gotten used to the slightly slower game play on PAL, and when I played them again in NTSC, I really didn't notice a speed increase so much. It was more drastic seeing it slow down when I converted to PAL than the other way around. Bottom line is, it's not enough to make me go back to NTSC, not with so many devices and monitors that support both these days. I've gotten used to the letter-boxed look of the non-overs-canned window and I use over-scanning (with Rastaconverter 240p) too much these days to want to lose it on any Atari. Everything now looks to stretched for me on NTSC screens.

 

That being said, and to stay on topic, I'm enjoying all the amazing art and color of Albert. I know the graphic shading techniques are limited, but I often wondered why they weren't used in Atari games more often, just far too little use of DLI's in the 80's. Or other Atari tricks for additional colors. Games like Space Harrier, AtarBlast! and The Last Squadron, and now Albert, are proving how good Atari graphics can be when it's hardware is used properly (in other words, ingeniously). Of course there have been others too, Crownland, Demo's Dungeon, etc, hopefully just the beginning of a continued evolution in Atari graphic art.

 

 

 

 

q.jpg

Edited by Gunstar
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This game is amazing !! Cannot get over how good it looks. My 800xl  is usually off, being today was a holiday, I fired it up, have had this game on all day long. Just made it past level 2. I hope this the first of a series, I would most definitively buy a cartridge or  disk version. Retronics are you here ? Lol

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I've gotten to Level 2 once, I got the idea of how this game plays off of YouTube and applied that (somewhat) "tutorial" in my gameplay, still gotta get the jumps down right so I can get some serious hang-time when transcending up a level from one platform to another, I'll get it down soon enough. Graphics are just not 1979-era 8-bit possible, but then again that's why they are well ahead of their time, state of the art indeed!!! THAT alone is what puts Albert above contemporaries like Super Mario Bros. for the NES IMO, although I am just simply amazed at what could've been done if this game were released in 1979 instead of 1989 like SMB was.

 

That also leads me to believe what this game would've looked like if it were developed and released for a system from 1989 like the 7800 ProSystem which has truly arcade-quality graphics and has experienced a better-later-than-never surge in popularity in the past few years with both the Concerto and Dragonfly SD-card based multicarts available for it and all the homebrews we have seen in the past several years and with them the 7800 could've literally competed head-to-head apples-to-apples against the NES. Take THAT Nintendo!!! #Atarian4Life 

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Very impressive.  And a huge thanks to the person who removed the PAL check.  Was just playing it on a 64k NTSC 800xl and it mostly worked fine.  Occasionally the gems seem to glitch, at least on level 2. Was only able to play through the 3 test levels since I don't have my 256k 800xl hooked up at the moment,  but even so it was great. How many levels are there with extended memory? 

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On 2/14/2021 at 12:39 PM, MrFish said:

 

Pang does not work on NTSC.

 

Pang DOES work on NTSC... just turn off music soundtrack, and there seems enough CPU cycles to service the gfx engine. 

 

My tests go up to 3rd level... but I love seeing how those balloons  explode into many, many more... so tons of moving stuff I've seen, for sure.

 

And several other titles work the same way, btw.

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49 minutes ago, Faicuai said:

Pang DOES work on NTSC... just turn off music soundtrack, and there seems enough CPU cycles to service the gfx engine. 

 

Yeah, I didn't have time yesterday to check it out; but I just found out that I didn't have the version XXL updated to allow disabling the sound.

 

Works, but I like how Bomb Jack works better; because you can just disable the music only and still have sound effects there.

 

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2 hours ago, MrFish said:

 

Yeah, I didn't have time yesterday to check it out; but I just found out that I didn't have the version XXL updated to allow disabling the sound.

 

Works, but I like how Bomb Jack works better; because you can just disable the music only and still have sound effects there.

 

@MrFish I just got home from work so can you do me a favor and please send me some links to both the XXL Pang and also Bomb Jack so I can enjoy them on my XEGS (or at least my 65XE) or do I need more memory to play them (64K stock on each)

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24 minutes ago, BIGHMW said:

@MrFish I just got home from work so can you do me a favor and please send me some links to both the XXL Pang and also Bomb Jack so I can enjoy them on my XEGS (or at least my 65XE) or do I need more memory to play them (64K stock on each)

Pang needs 256 KB

Bomb Jack needs 320 KB

 

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8 hours ago, Gunstar said:

I switched over to Antic PAL hybrid about 15 years ago, and finally went full PAL on my 1200XL four years ago after my 1084S monitor stopped working. I then got an 800, and it was going to be my NTSC machine. But my 1200XL was down for repairs and I realized how limited I was with my NTSC 800, when many of my favorite games these days are PAL. So I converted it to PAL as well. I was thinking about turning my 1200XL back into an NTSC, but there are only a select few games that the slight bump in speed helps, like the Lucasfilm games. But I'd already gotten used to the slightly slower game play on PAL, and when I played them again in NTSC, I really didn't notice a speed increase so much. It was more drastic seeing it slow down when I converted to PAL than the other way around. Bottom line is, it's not enough to make me go back to NTSC, not with so many devices and monitors that support both these days. I've gotten used to the letter-boxed look of the non-overs-canned window and I use over-scanning (with Rastaconverter 240p) too much these days to want to lose it on any Atari. Everything now looks to stretched for me on NTSC screens.

 

That being said, and to stay on topic, I'm enjoying all the amazing art and color of Albert. I know the graphic shading techniques are limited, but I often wondered why they weren't used in Atari games more often, just far too little use of DLI's in the 80's. Or other Atari tricks for additional colors. Games like Space Harrier, AtarBlast! and The Last Squadron, and now Albert, are proving how good Atari graphics can be when it's hardware is used properly (in other words, ingeniously). Of course there have been others too, Crownland, Demo's Dungeon, etc, hopefully just the beginning of a continued evolution in Atari graphic art.

 

 

 

 

q.jpg

This is so funny as I can't stand playing the vast majority of games (the pre 1987 ones I guess) on PAL anymore. Being from The Netherlands, I grew up using PAL A8 machines and never knew better, but once I discovered the NTSC speed, I never wanted to go back. I only switch to PAL ANTIC when really needed, like with these more recent games and demos.

It's not only the speed increase with NTSC by the way. Many older games only produce the correct colors on NTSC (Pac Man f.i.), but there's also 60Hz which greatly reduces flicker (let's say it eliminates it) and you get the correct aspect ratio as it was intended by the A8 developers. 

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