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Needing Relief for GORF Grief


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I heard rumors of a new version of GORF for the ColecoVision, which actually looks and sounds like the arcade game. As opposed to the ColecoVision version of GORF that we actually got, which looks and sounds like crap. ("Arcade faithful," my butt.) What happened with that?

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A proper version of Gorf requires the Galaxian level to be included, in addition to the other levels. Just coding the Galaxian level is a programming challenge, let alone the rest of the game. Doing all that (including the digitized voices) would be a labour of love any way you look at it.

 

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I disassembled Gorf and I could put in a Galaxian level fairly easy but if I were going to do it then I would fix all the other inconsistencies.
If I had to add voice then it would be an external hardware device of sorts.

As much as I enjoyed Coleco Bezerk, in my opinion, that voice was more irritating than helpful.  The Colecovision just was not meant for that despite how much love Tony put into it.  Hats off to him.

 

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4 hours ago, Captain Cozmos said:

I disassembled Gorf and I could put in a Galaxian level fairly easy but if I were going to do it then I would fix all the other inconsistencies.
If I had to add voice then it would be an external hardware device of sorts.

As much as I enjoyed Coleco Bezerk, in my opinion, that voice was more irritating than helpful.  The Colecovision just was not meant for that despite how much love Tony put into it.  Hats off to him.

 

Like this? I'd buy that for Gorf in a heartbeat...

https://lundyelectronics.com/product/adam-speech-synthesizer/

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My problem with speech synthesis is that, in addition to taking up great big gobs of memory, it never sounds right. Votrax doesn't sound like any home speech synthesizers. When I did the Game Boy Advance version of GORF, I just used samples... but then again, so does the emulated version of GORF.

 

My big beef with ColecoVision GORF is that its resemblance to the arcade game is tenuous at best. Aliens don't look like the aliens in the arcade game, things move kind of strangely, the new soundtrack is dopey, and on and on it goes.

 

One of the better GORF ports of the day was on the VIC-20. It didn't have voice. It didn't have the Galaxians stage. Yet, it FELT like the arcade game... loud and angry and hostile and brightly colored. ColecoVision GORF just feels... limp, toothless, perfunctory rather than passionate. It doesn't look like anyone had fun making it, and I don't have any fun playing it. I've heard people (including Mark Bussler, who really should know better) call ColecoVision GORF extremely faithful to the arcade game, but it really isn't. It's Ecce Homo, painted over by an eighty year old woman with failing sight.

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On 6/4/2024 at 10:49 PM, Jess Ragan said:

I heard rumors of a new version of GORF for the ColecoVision, which actually looks and sounds like the arcade game. As opposed to the ColecoVision version of GORF that we actually got, which looks and sounds like crap. ("Arcade faithful," my butt.) What happened with that?

CollectorVision has already been working on a new version of Gorf for the CV which will use the MegaCart PCB and last J-F posted, the working title is "Gorf - Super Game". It's been a while since J-F last posted about it on the CV Experience Facebook group, but IIRC all the graphics are completed, there are something like 30 levels that borrow gameplay from all types of vertical and horizontal shooters, not sure about or if the actual arcade levels will be incorporated and it seems like the only thing needed was for a programmer to take on development.

 

As far as voice synthesis for any possible new version of Gorf, as it stands now the only options are the Lundy Electronics Voice Synthesizer ( ADAM and ColecoVision Speech Synthesizer (ADAM or ColecoVision Color Housing) - Lundy Electronics ) which uses the SPO256A-AL2 chip or a software implementation like Digital Fluff developed and shared here on AtariAge with the Coleco SAM demo rom files. Either way, a MegaCart PCB would probably be needed.

 

As far as what happened with Coleco's version, they never stated "Arcade faithful" but rather they used "Plays Like the Real Arcade Game". It would seem to me that using the work "Like" offered Coleco a lot of legal leeway as far as any possible false advertising lawsuits!!! 🤪

 

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THIRTY levels? Dang-a-rang. I just wanted a faithful version of GORF on ColecoVision, not a supercharged sequel! (Although I wouldn't mind a supercharged sequel if someone were to give it to me.)

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19 hours ago, Pixelboy said:

A proper version of Gorf requires the Galaxian level to be included, in addition to the other levels. Just coding the Galaxian level is a programming challenge, let alone the rest of the game. Doing all that (including the digitized voices) would be a labour of love any way you look at it.

 

Why reinvent the wheel? Just copy and paste the AtariSoft Galaxian game code for the CV into Coleco's Gorf and burn it to a MegaCart PCB. Easy Peasy! 😈

 

FULL DISCLAIMER BASED ON THE TIMES WE ARE LIVING IN.... Before anyone chimes in with a WTF, I'm being sarcastic.

 

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11 hours ago, Captain Cozmos said:

I disassembled Gorf and I could put in a Galaxian level fairly easy but if I were going to do it then I would fix all the other inconsistencies.
If I had to add voice then it would be an external hardware device of sorts.

As much as I enjoyed Coleco Bezerk, in my opinion, that voice was more irritating than helpful.  The Colecovision just was not meant for that despite how much love Tony put into it.  Hats off to him.

 

I can provide you speech on the SN789 without extra hw and without stopping the gameplay

All you need is to add on the ISR the player and stop the other sound effects while speaking.

The quality will be low but for robot voice it can work

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Note that the video above shows the voice on the  SN76489 while the music is executed by the Ay8910.

On a plain colecovision you should pause sfx and music while playing the speech as it is using all the 3 channels

 

 

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, NIAD said:

Why reinvent the wheel? Just copy and paste the AtariSoft Galaxian game code for the CV into Coleco's Gorf and burn it to a MegaCart PCB. Easy Peasy! 😈

 

FULL DISCLAIMER BASED ON THE TIMES WE ARE LIVING IN.... Before anyone chimes in with a WTF, I'm being sarcastic.

 

Don't think that has not crossed my mind.
Unfortunately I have disassembled Atari Galaxian as well.

Coleco goes through it's BIOS calls and Timers while Atari had their own framework.
In any case it would be a rewrite and the only thing I would be able to use would be the graphics.
Even the sound in Atari were direct calls so they would need a conversion.

Galaxian unto itself is not a hard write as far as a game.

I am sure it would be far easier for a rewrite than a conversion.  Unless you are grabbing an MSX port like others have done for Galaga.
 

Edited by Captain Cozmos
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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, artrag said:

Note that the video above shows the voice on the  SN76489 while the music is executed by the Ay8910.

On a plain colecovision you should pause sfx and music while playing the speech as it is using all the 3 channels

 

 

I wish it were that easy.
I have already disassembled Berzerk and Squish'Em

I think that more was promised that could be delivered in Berzerk despite how good it is, and Squish'Em must pause everything until the voice finishes.

I've disassembled and have listings of maybe 97% of the entire Coleco/ADAM library to include everything from 2019 on, the underground stuff, Opcode.  All of it aside from the CP/M and Basic software.

 

So that's how I came to the conclusion that the best way to have voice on the Colecovision would be an external modification.
 

Edited by Captain Cozmos
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Posted (edited)

Yeah, the Galaxian stage could easily look like this screen.

 

gorf-missing-galaxian-screen-cv-dk.png.c36f3b3304e9838d45a0ca2462b223e8.png

 

And the person behind Wizard of Wor is the best person ever for speech synth must be the sound king: Perez.

But also our god(father) Bienvenu is a sound guru.

 

:D

Edited by ten-four
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1 hour ago, Captain Cozmos said:

I wish it were that easy.
I have already disassembled Berzerk and Squish'Em

I think that more was promised that could be delivered in Berzerk despite how good it is, and Squish'Em must pause everything until the voice finishes.

I've disassembled and have listings of maybe 97% of the entire Coleco/ADAM library to include everything from 2019 on, the underground stuff, Opcode.  All of it aside from the CP/M and Basic software.

 

So that's how I came to the conclusion that the best way to have voice on the Colecovision would be an external modification.
 

You  do not need external hw if you can accept low fidelity.

For games having a robotic voice can work just fine.

Look at the video if you haven't done yet 

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35 minutes ago, artrag said:

You  do not need external hw if you can accept low fidelity.

For games having a robotic voice can work just fine.

Look at the video if you haven't done yet 

OK, then I will elaborate.
On an unexpanded Colecovision 85% of the rom Squish'Em is the the voice screaming Squish'em and AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.
The rom maybe 16k so if someone wants to add a pile of voices to Gorf then you are going well past the 32k mark for an original Colecovision.
ADAM can handle it and before you say it.  All of "my" work on the Coleco line is the "COLECO" line which does not include that MSX adapter.

So if I were to upgrade Gorf I would bring back the Galaxian level, Extra screens and what not but have an external device to have voices but it would be optional only to enhance game play.
That's just me.  I am sure that someone else has idea's and the talent that wants to tackle this.

The unfortunate part is that right now I am caught up in far more pressing matters so someone else has to step up to the plate.  That goes for the Super Smurf project as well.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Captain Cozmos said:

I wish it were that easy.
I have already disassembled Berzerk and Squish'Em

I think that more was promised that could be delivered in Berzerk despite how good it is, and Squish'Em must pause everything until the voice finishes.

I've disassembled and have listings of maybe 97% of the entire Coleco/ADAM library to include everything from 2019 on, the underground stuff, Opcode.  All of it aside from the CP/M and Basic software.

 

So that's how I came to the conclusion that the best way to have voice on the Colecovision would be an external modification.
 

Low quality means also low rom storage. My algorithm needs 6 byte per frame  i.e. 360 bytes per second.

You should probably move to a banked rom in any case if you are going to add Galaxian 

Edited by artrag
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On 6/6/2024 at 4:53 AM, artrag said:

Note that the video above shows the voice on the  SN76489 while the music is executed by the Ay8910.

On a plain colecovision you should pause sfx and music while playing the speech as it is using all the 3 channels

 

 

Is there a download for that version of Uridium? I assume it needs the equivalent of the SGM to play.

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On 6/6/2024 at 11:47 AM, ten-four said:

Yeah, the Galaxian stage could easily look like this screen.

 

gorf-missing-galaxian-screen-cv-dk.png.c36f3b3304e9838d45a0ca2462b223e8.png

 

And the person behind Wizard of Wor is the best person ever for speech synth must be the sound king: Perez.

But also our god(father) Bienvenu is a sound guru.

 

:D

Ooohhhh... where is that from?

 

In general, in this day and age where we can emulate any arcade machine we want to on any platform we want to, I don't much understand the push for "arcade perfect" ports specifically for the ColecoVision.  When I was a kid?  Sure, that was exactly what I wanted, and the ColecoVision came the closest.  Now?  I'd rather have an expanded Gorf that looks like and matches the style of the ColecoVision version of Gorf, rather than just another way to play the arcade version, which I can play on almost any platform at any time.

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You're entitled to your opinion, but homebrew development for the system suggests that you're in the minority about this. Yes, you can just emulate all of these old arcade games, but the ColecoVision promised arcade faithful conversions of arcade games, and it was very rare that it actually lived up to those aspirations. Forty years later, players want ColecoVision arcade ports that actually look, sound, and feel like the arcade games, and that's reflected in the many titles by Opcode, CollectorVision, and others. People don't want to play a crummy, choppy, and ugly version of Time Pilot for the ColecoVision. They want something more closely approximating the real thing, and now, they have it.

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43 minutes ago, Jess Ragan said:

You're entitled to your opinion, but homebrew development for the system suggests that you're in the minority about this. Yes, you can just emulate all of these old arcade games, but the ColecoVision promised arcade faithful conversions of arcade games, and it was very rare that it actually lived up to those aspirations. Forty years later, players want ColecoVision arcade ports that actually look, sound, and feel like the arcade games, and that's reflected in the many titles by Opcode, CollectorVision, and others. People don't want to play a crummy, choppy, and ugly version of Time Pilot for the ColecoVision. They want something more closely approximating the real thing, and now, they have it.

I agree with you. The people love to see how would have been a proper arcade port on the consoles from their childhood.

It is a sort of revenge against the history. They want to know what would have been possible if only the developers would have been more competent or less hasty.

It is almost the same reason why we code on 40 years old machines:  to know what would have been possible if only developers would have spent more efforts in their work 

Edited by artrag
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For what it's worth, I really liked Gorf for Colecovision, sure the graphics were off but the player ship looked great and to this day that victory music when you are getting promoted was class!

 

To this day that music melody is tied to Gorf, it's one of those rare moments where I wished the arcade had the music as well in addition to the voice telling you have been promoted.

 

I took a snip of a video right at the music screen for you all to listen if you do not remember it.

 

 

Played a lot of it as a kid and would love to see an arcade perfect version, just put in the music too! Ha ha!

 

Edited by imstarryeyed
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I look at it as, I love my Colecovision.  I love the games.
I owned Coleco Pong when I received it for Christmas way back when.
I owned the Pacman tabletop when it first came out.

All these devices are unique.
So, for me, I am not going out and buying a cartridge that replicates the Arcade version because I already have MAME/MESS.
I can play that crap in 5k because of the size of my screen.  Even larger if I get a better monitor.

Colecovision is in a world of it's own of simplicity.  I still play the Atari 2600 and Intellivision as well because of those reasons.
I don't want perfection and I never asked for it.

Now, it is indeed possible to add the missing Galaxian level and maybe some extra stuff per limits of stock Colecovision.
As far as voice, I mean come on people.  There has to be some resemblance to the Colecovsion or it's NOT A Colecovision.

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