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Pixel Width of Players

Erik Zimmermann

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14 minutes ago, Erik Zimmermann said:

I need a player more than 8 pixels wide. Is this possible in Batari?

Short answer: No.


Long version:

The players are 8px width (in bB and ASM), but you can use the TIA NUSIZx register to:

  • make the player pixel double or quad size
  • use both players (and maybe even their copies)
  • add one or both missiles to your player as a 1px line (also in double or quad mode)

for more information about the NUSIZ register and player/missile sizes and copies see:




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Players are always 8px wide per scanline.


With assembly you can modify NUSIZx and/or shift the players left/right on every scanline to make the overall image wider than 8px, though each scanline is still limited to 8px. This technique was used back in the day with a number of games, such as Boxing and Dolphin.






Those screenshots were taken using Stella's Debug Color Mode feature. It's very useful to figure out how a game's display was created.




Red = player0, orange = missile0, yellow = player1, etc.


I used this technique (just line shifting, no changes to NUSIZx) to draw the Dragon in Medieval Mayhem, large asteroids in Space Rocks, and the space stations in Draconian.








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  • 3 months later...

wow this looks like an epic discovery.. I wonder why it was not used that much in later times when ram was a bit higher because of lower prices.
By the way, so you can then keep shifting the player in away that it can extend over the 48 color clock limit, or maybe what I mean is the sprite can be as wide as the 160 color clocks then as long as you can shift it that far though :D - btw, that must be the best looking dragon on the Atari 2600 ever!!!

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