Jump to content
IGNORED

Canada Game Con


Recommended Posts

Canada Game Con started last year in Calgary. As my local game con, I had pinged them about a table.

 

This year it moved to Edmonton, and between that and not having anything modern yet, I was going to pass on a table. But they gave me a free one in the ASUS ROG section. I warned them I was pure retro, and they did it anyway!

 

Unfortunately I planned on an 8' table and got this little conversation booth, but, I think that's okay. I'll be there all weekend and I'll be showing Dragon's Lair TI, Cool Herders GBA, and Super Space Acer (on the Phoenix, but it's TI and Coleco both). I'll also be short a monitor power cable so I might have to alternate TI and Phoenix - but I also have it all running on emulation just in case. 

 

Anyway, just wanted to share that, it's maybe a bit OT but there's enough TI to count - and when was the last time a TI-99/4A was on the floor of a modern gaming convention, eh? ;)

 

ee83066166f20017.jpge83722f1cd42a031.jpg

 

  • Like 18
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Tursi If we had a TI core for the Phoenix, you could demonstrate everything on that.

 

I have been hoping for TI and Intellivision cores since I backed the Phoenix.  I guess that is not going to happen :(

 

We need a big CON in the Boston/NYC area! I missed out on the Philly Classic way back when.  I have much more interest in this type of thing these days.

 

Thank you for supporting the TI and more. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/14/2024 at 1:36 PM, retrodroid said:

Cool!  I'd love to check it out, but I'm already going to be in Edmonton Wed-Sun next week for the big YegPin pinball event up there.  

 

Yeah, there was a con of some sort last weekend too - but I can't come up to edmonton every week, so this one will have to do. Also sad to be missing Calgary Horror Con this weekend. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, 1980gamer said:

@Tursi If we had a TI core for the Phoenix, you could demonstrate everything on that.

 

I have been hoping for TI and Intellivision cores since I backed the Phoenix.  I guess that is not going to happen :(

 

We need a big CON in the Boston/NYC area! I missed out on the Philly Classic way back when.  I have much more interest in this type of thing these days.

 

Thank you for supporting the TI and more. 

Yeah, the main guy behind it apparently stepped down. I don't know the details. I created an updated Coleco core that fixed sound init in the menu (some games that only partially initialized the AY chip were triggering a strange audio bug in the HDL side, but it was easily worked around with correct initialization). But without Brian I don't have a way to officially push it out or test it on the second hardware rev (it should work there since I only changed the menu, but I don't know if it needs to be merged with a different bitstream).

 

It's fully open, but nobody with the know how is interested in supporting it... and that's really the challenge with any new device. I still like it as a Coleco though.

 

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Tursi said:

Yeah, the main guy behind it apparently stepped down. I don't know the details.

I put a lot of faith into the Phoenix.  Enough to back it and get to attend the expo for a couple of days (hung out with @matthew180 there, too.)  I like it as a ColecoVision, but am disappointed at the missed promises.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 hours ago, Tursi said:

Yeah, the main guy behind it apparently stepped down. I don't know the details.

 

Sounds ominous.  The Phoenix was really Brain's project, and he did a pretty good job of managing things and wrangling the 3 or 4 devs contributing to the project.  Admittedly I know very little about how it started, or what happened after the release, despite having worked on it pretty heavily.  I'm not much of a console gamer, and never had a CV BITD.

 

23 hours ago, Tursi said:

But without Brian I don't have a way to officially push it out ...

 

We could fork the project, if only to have your fixes in our own units.

 

23 hours ago, Tursi said:

It's fully open, but nobody with the know how is interested in supporting it...

 

That is a challenge if the hardware is not being made any more.  You would be limited to existing devices, which makes it hard to build a user base.  The Spartan-6 FPGA used in the Phoenix is also *more* expensive now than it was pre-COVID, so that does not help matters.

 

23 hours ago, OLD CS1 said:

I put a lot of faith into the Phoenix.  Enough to back it and get to attend the expo for a couple of days (hung out with @matthew180 there, too.)  I like it as a ColecoVision, but am disappointed at the missed promises.

 

Yeah, that was a great time!  I had no idea who was involved, who supported it, etc..  Brian just asked me to show up for the presentation.  What were / are the missed promises?

 

On 6/14/2024 at 1:49 AM, Tursi said:

I'll be there all weekend and I'll be showing Dragon's Lair TI, Cool Herders GBA, and Super Space Acer (on the Phoenix, but it's TI and Coleco both).

 

Back on topic: Super cool booth!  What was the interest like / how did it go?

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, matthew180 said:

Back on topic: Super cool booth!  What was the interest like / how did it go?

Thanks. It was all right. There are apparently zero retro enthusiasts up here, as NOBODY indicated any usage of any retro systems. One person mentioned still having all his systems, but not set up. Guess that explains why it was so hard to find anyone in Calgary with like mind.

 

I was in the ASUS sponsored "Republic of Gamers" section, and the ASUS tech was at least grateful I could use the laptop for an emulator -- which I did because I forgot the power cord for my second monitor and ended up not running the Phoenix. They were friendly and I was sitting next to one of the guys who runs the Calgary Game Dev group, so I signed up for that again and we'll give that a try.

 

The show itself was in three halls and had a lot of video games and a lot of tabletop gaming. There was a really nice stage that my phone was incapable of getting a clear photo of due to all the UV lighting, but it looked awesome. I know they did a Street Fighter 6 tournament, and I watched the last match of that, but all I know is Blanka got worked by some character I didn't know. ;)

 

I had put security on everything - the Dragon's Lair cartridge I ran a screw through the top plastic tab - lines up nicely with the cartridge center screw hole, and steel security cables on everything. But I ended up only tying down the GBA. Nobody caused any trouble with anything, except someone kept flipping my business cards upside down when I stepped away. 

 

A lot of people keyed in to Dragon's Lair and a good number recognized the TI (which ran flawlessly 8 hours a day all three days). A few people were interested in the tech behind it and most people were interested to hear about any continuing retro scene. I think maybe two people over all three days were genuinely "why is this here?"

 

Kids tended to like Super Space Acer a lot as it was easy for them to pick up and play. Cool Herders attracted them with the colors but it was pretty chaotic and takes a little more time to get into. Also my GBA battery was dead every two hours like clockwork. I even tried a code change to sleep the CPU a little more often, but it made no difference. I'm using after market batteries so frankly I blame that. If I do that again a power extension cable is mandatory.

 

I had to mod the Phoenix emulator and Super Space Acer to recognize the XBox game pad keys as number keys for the difficulty select, as telling people to press 1-3 for difficulty led to them scanning the game controller in confusion. I used the Epyx 500XJ joystick on Dragon's Lair, happy to present such a quality stick, but less than a handful of people figured out how to hold it without help, even when I wrote "UP" on it in sharpie. But people got the game quickly enough - I developed a habit of walking them through the first two screens. It was enlightening to see how what was obvious in my generation is lost knowledge today.

 

Lots of comments on the Cool Herders graphics, lots of opportunity to talk about the TI, Coleco, and F18A. Lots of shocked looks when I said the TI was 42 years old and still running fine. (It was truly older than most of the people at the show). I gave away a lot of business cards - sadly I don't know how many. But the only email back so far was an offer to host my website for only $20 a month. ;)

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, matthew180 said:

We could fork the project, if only to have your fixes in our own units.

Yeah, I did that, and Brian gave me what was supposed to be the up to date bitstream for hardware rev 1 (which I made a build from), but I've no idea what changed in rev 2.

 

The problem was revealed yet again by Coleco software that shortcuts init, assuming it was done for it. But based on my testing, it looks like bad initialization of some kind of shadow register in the AY core. If you write valid default values, all is good from then on. But if you don't, it acts like there are different values in the mixer register (IIRC) than you get if you read it back. So my fix just initialized the AY in the menu. I didn't do that previously cause I was told I didn't need to. ;)

 

https://github.com/tursilion/Phoenix-Colecovision/tree/sdcc4

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Tursi said:

someone kept flipping my business cards upside down when I stepped away.

BUWAHAHAHAHAHAA!!!  Well, being the only thing not tied down, you did kind-of invite that.

ducklmaorofl.gif.06634353e149268a1357befc1dd9241e.gif

(Honestly, sounds like something I would have done.)

 

1 hour ago, Tursi said:

I used the Epyx 500XJ joystick on Dragon's Lair, happy to present such a quality stick, but less than a handful of people figured out how to hold it without help, even when I wrote "UP" on it in sharpie.

A solid, awesome joystick, of which I have several spares just-in-case.  People have problems figuring out the joysticks every year at VCF.  I keep planning to do up a graphic which shows how to properly hold a joystick but never get around to it.

 

1 hour ago, Tursi said:

It was enlightening to see how what was obvious in my generation is lost knowledge today.

Indeed.  I always considered holding a joystick to be instinctive, like even a baby fresh from the oven knows how to do it.

 

1 hour ago, Tursi said:

But the only email back so far was an offer to host my website for only $20 a month. ;)

Nothing about your car warranty??

 

7 hours ago, matthew180 said:

What were / are the missed promises?

To be clear, I do not think, nor want to make the impression, that the Pheonix team made promises they did not keep, but more that the unit itself missed out on its promise of potential.  If I were to be critical about something, it would be a much better working Atari 2600 core, plus cores for other systems.  (But, now we have the Atari 2600+.)  I cannot really blame the Phoenix guys for that, they were actively encouraging people to program new cores.  I know a lot of people have reported problems with the HDMI working on some TV models, but I have yet to run into that.  All-in-all, it is a sweet little unit.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/14/2024 at 2:49 AM, Tursi said:

Canada Game Con started last year in Calgary. As my local game con, I had pinged them about a table.

 

Sigh. I lived in Alberta between 1998 and 2021 (first in Edmonton, and then I moved to Calgary in 2009).

 

In all of those years, there was exactly one dedicated game show -- an arcade game event in the Inglewood Community Hall, around 2015 or so. I was so envious of the folks in Ontario where there were more and more frequent such events.

 

Where in Edmonton (what venue) was the event held?  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 minutes ago, Tursi said:

Edmonton Expo Center hosted it this year... and I think I heard it's there next year too.

How far is the from Rogers Place?  Close enough to feel the sting of failing to bring the Cup back from the 'States after 32 years?

  • Haha 1
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

31 minutes ago, OLD CS1 said:

How far is the from Rogers Place?  Close enough to feel the sting of failing to bring the Cup back from the 'States after 32 years?

haha, didn't see it. The Hotel staff were right into the game though. ;)

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For anyone localish who might be interested, the big YEGPIN show & tournaments are on this weekend in Edmonton (well, Sherwood Park):  https://www.yegpin.com

 

Mostly pinballs, about 115 on free play with entry, and about 37 classic arcade games as well. Onsite beer / food garden as well.  

 

If you're into pinball tournaments... well they're all sold out. 240 participants in the 3 day main event from all over the place, including the largest women's tournament in the world in 2024.

 

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming...  🙂

 

Edited by retrodroid
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

41 minutes ago, mizapf said:

Thou dost, if I'm not mistaken. ;-) (German: du tust)

15 minutes ago, Lee Stewart said:

 

Yes: Thou dost .... She doth ....

Bloody pedants 😜

  • Thanks 2
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

46 minutes ago, OLD CS1 said:

Bloody pedants 😜

Just someone whose mother tongue does that in every sentence.

 

(ich tue - du tust - er/sie/es tut; ich tat; ich habe getan)

 

Maybe I should learn a bit of Middle English.

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, mizapf said:

Just someone whose mother tongue does that in every sentence.

 

(ich tue - du tust - er/sie/es tut; ich tat; ich habe getan)

 

Maybe I should learn a bit of Middle English.

Since you already know something related to Old Anglo-Saxonish and you know Modern English it won't be very difficult. :)

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   1 member

×
×
  • Create New...