Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

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Knights of Bytes
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Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Sun Feb 02, 2020 4:25 pm

Hi there, NesDev community.

I'm Chester from the Knights of Bytes, and we would like to present you some teaser pictures and videos of Sam's Journey, our very first game for the NES. It's about a cute little hero called Sam who finds himself on an unexpected journey in a strange world.

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Sam's Journey (NES) · Title Picture

Originally, we created Sam's Journey for the Commodore 64 in order to fill the lack of console-style platformers on that computer and bring some of those certain consolesque vibes to its users. Due to the warm feedback we received after the game's release by the end of 2017, we decided to kind of close the circle and bring the game back from the home computer world to one of the most popular 8-bit consoles, the NES.

Here's the first sneak peek teaser video of Sam's Journey on the NES (click to watch on Youtube):

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Sam's Journey (NES) · Sneak Peak #1 · "Here We Go, Sam!"

Sam may look cute, but he is fast and swift! And with the proper suit, he can change his appearance completely and be a fierce pirate with a mighty cutlass!

And here comes the second one (click to watch on Youtube):

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Sam's Journey (NES) · Sneak Peak #2 · "Sam's Desert Dream"

You've already seen Sam become a pirate with a mighty cutlass, but in the hot desert with its ancient temple ruins, a special climbing ability comes in much more handy. Enjoy the second teaser, featuring Ninja Sam and an Egyptian-style soundtrack!

We're going to post more updates very soon as the development progresses. Stay tuned! :)

Chester
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Last edited by Knights of Bytes on Thu Feb 06, 2020 1:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Sam's Journey

Post by lancuster » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:12 pm

This game looks like Codemasters games (ie Linus Spacehead - Cosmic Crusader). :)
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Re: Sam's Journey

Post by miau » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:57 pm

Siiick 8-)

The gray stones in the desert level are somehow my favorite. They convey that C64 charm perfectly... on the NES.

Even the fast arps in the soundtrack are tastefully placed. You guys obviously know what you're doing.

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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Thu Feb 06, 2020 1:49 pm

lancuster wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:12 pm
This game looks like Codemasters games (ie Linus Spacehead - Cosmic Crusader). :)
Is that a good or a bad thing? :)
miau wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:57 pm
The gray stones in the desert level are somehow my favorite. They convey that C64 charm perfectly... on the NES.
Interesting you say that... Are gray stones somehow a C64 trait? ;)
miau wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:57 pm
Even the fast arps in the soundtrack are tastefully placed. You guys obviously know what you're doing.
Thanks! At first, our composer was shocked after reading the 2A03 APU specs. But then he took the challenge! :)
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by miau » Fri Feb 07, 2020 11:24 am

Knights of Bytes wrote:
Thu Feb 06, 2020 1:49 pm
miau wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:57 pm
The gray stones in the desert level are somehow my favorite. They convey that C64 charm perfectly... on the NES.
Interesting you say that... Are gray stones somehow a C64 trait? ;)
Nope, but the bold and beautiful combination of the pink and yellow hues and the dithering with the horizontal stripes (didn't the C64 have a double-width pixel mode?) evoke the connection for me. Maybe that's because most of what I know the C64 for is demoscene.

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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:09 pm

miau wrote:
Fri Feb 07, 2020 11:24 am
Nope, but the bold and beautiful combination of the pink and yellow hues and the dithering with the horizontal stripes (didn't the C64 have a double-width pixel mode?) evoke the connection for me. Maybe that's because most of what I know the C64 for is demoscene.
You're right about the horizontal stripes. They are often used in demos or games for PAL systems where they produce non-flickering stable mixed colors due the halved chroma resolution.

You're also right about the double-width or "fat" pixels. On the C64, the two bits for the color information are not stored planar, but interleaved. It's a bit annoying, and our graphics artist enjoyed the single pixel aspect of the NES.
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Tue Mar 03, 2020 4:58 pm

Hi there, NesDev community.

There's an update on Sam's Journey for the NES.

Although being a great runner and an amazing jumper, Sam is not at all averse to alternative methods of transportation.

The third teaser of our upcoming NES title features Sam in a fiery castle. Watch him climb a web, use moving platforms, and have himself shot across long distances by cannons! Just click to play:

Image

Sam's Journey (NES) · Sneak Peek #3 · "Sam's Castle Ride"

Stay tuned for more updates! :)

Chester
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by dink » Wed Mar 04, 2020 7:16 am

The third sneak-peak looks amazing! (as do the others) - awesome work!!

best regards,
- dink

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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Ryoga » Thu Mar 05, 2020 12:37 am

Watching the videos of the NES version you can see the great work that is being done with this game. Are there any plans to release a DEMO version or will the final version of the game be taken directly?

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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Sun Mar 08, 2020 5:28 pm

dink wrote:
Wed Mar 04, 2020 7:16 am
The third sneak-peak looks amazing! (as do the others) - awesome work!!
Thanks a lot, dink! :D
Ryoga wrote:
Thu Mar 05, 2020 12:37 am
Watching the videos of the NES version you can see the great work that is being done with this game. Are there any plans to release a DEMO version or will the final version of the game be taken directly?
We generally don't release public demos of unfinished products, but we have had very good experience with frequently posting screenshots, videos, production stills and progress updates in order to give our inclined audience the best possible picture of the upcoming game. Also, we're always pleased to answer questions about it.
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:15 pm

Hi there, video gamers!

We've been asked if there will be a PAL and an NTSC version of Sam's Journey on the NES. The answer is yes, and we're even going the extra mile and will provide equalized gameplay speeds on both systems! It seems to work well so far!

Enjoy this little video study where we play the two versions simultaniously with one controller. Just click to play:

Image

PAL and NTSC version of Sam's Journey played simultaniously

Stay tuned for more updates! :)

Chester
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Hojo_Norem » Sun Apr 05, 2020 9:51 am

Knights of Bytes wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:15 pm
We've been asked if there will be a PAL and an NTSC version of Sam's Journey on the NES. The answer is yes, and we're even going the extra mile and will provide equalized gameplay speeds on both systems! It seems to work well so far!
That looks superb!

Homebrewers should take note of this. High quality 50Hz/60Hz equivalency on the NES is more than possible, there are few excuses for not trying and NTSC entitlement is not one of them! :mrgreen:
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by tepples » Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:19 am

How should someone doing a debut cartridge release cover the cost of importing the appropriate console and a compatible low-latency TV? I have contributed to several NES cartridge releases but have yet to act as producer.

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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Knights of Bytes » Sun Apr 05, 2020 12:56 pm

Hojo_Norem wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 9:51 am
That looks superb!
Thanks a lot! :D

It should be pointed out though that 50/60 Hz parity requires a whole lot of extra work. For Sam's Journey, we decided to put it in, so players in both regions will share the same gameplay experience.

However, homebrewers, especially those who just got into this fine art, shouldn't have themselves discouraged by the 50/60 Hz issue, as solving it is neither obligatory nor does it make sense for each and every type of game.
tepples wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:19 am
How should someone doing a debut cartridge release cover the cost of importing the appropriate console and a compatible low-latency TV?
I was lucky when I realized that my old Grundig CRT TV from 1991 can handle both 50fps and 60fps. However, it can NOT handle both PAL and NTSC color decoding, so I have to watch one of those in black and white! :wink:

Chester
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Re: Sam's Journey · A new NES game in the making

Post by Hojo_Norem » Sun Apr 05, 2020 12:58 pm

tepples wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:19 am
How should someone doing a debut cartridge release cover the cost of importing the appropriate console and a compatible low-latency TV?
You know, I can't really form an argument against that specific point. I suppose a somewhat uneducated reply would be test domestically on real HW and test foreign on an accurate emulator? Not ideal in some people's eyes but at least is shows an effort has been made.

Knights of Bytes have gone out of their way to provide a NTSC compatible version of Sam's Journey on C64 when they didn't have to. People have asked for NTSC support on the upcoming NES release and they've gone a step further with the gameplay speed, bringing the NTSC version in parity with PAL where they didn't have to.

I guess this kind of topic pushes my buttons somewhat... Having resided in PAL land all my life... Learning how much PAL land got shafted over the years.

We had to put up and shut up.

On the other hand, the most recent memory I have of NTSC entitlement in relation to a big name game would be all the people demanding an "American" dub of Xenoblade Chronicles.

Okay. I'm spent. I ain't going to derail the thread any longer. My apologies.
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