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 Post subject: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 1:39 pm 
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You guys have inspired me to start work on my first nes game. It's going to be pretty simple compared to the other entries, but having the competition deadline be a motivator for me might help me finish! My goal is a 4-player party-style game, a sort of space shooter/race combination.

It doesn't look like much yet (I'm learning as I go, and don't have a lot of time per week to put into it), but the fact that I have almost 6 months gives me hope!

(And thank you, Tepples, for your nrom template on your website, that was really helpful to use in getting started the first time)


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 4:53 pm 
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I see 4 scoreboards. I hope you don't plan to do a 4 player mode, that would be very hard for judges to test.

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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 5:05 pm 
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"I see 4 scoreboards. I hope you plan to do a 4 player mode, that would be totally awesome because there are not enough 4-player games available!"

Corrected that for you. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 5:06 pm 
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An emulator with netplay?


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 5:09 pm 
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Are there any NES emulators with netplay as robust as that of games using GGPO, with transparent rollback and reemulation if Internet lag causes the received presses to differ from what was guessed? It'd require saving a state every frame, but I imagine that with only 10K of RAM in compo-eligible games, keeping a log of the past quarter second of saved states would be practical.


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 8:05 pm 
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dougeff wrote:
I see 4 scoreboards. I hope you don't plan to do a 4 player mode, that would be very hard for judges to test.

I'm absolutely planning for it to be 4 playered. You can play with 2 or 3 instead, although the game is primarily designed to be played with 4 players.

I didn't realize the competition was geared towards single-player games only.

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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 8:18 pm 
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Two-player games are fine.

The only problem with 4-player games is that it's relatively hard to come across a NES 4-player adapter.


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 8:21 pm 
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Quote:
I didn't realize the competition was geared towards single-player games only.


Make whatever game you want. Maybe somebody has a 4 Score. I don't. I don't even have 4 controllers.

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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 9:19 pm 
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tepples wrote:
Are there any NES emulators with netplay as robust as that of games using GGPO, with transparent rollback and reemulation if Internet lag causes the received presses to differ from what was guessed? It'd require saving a state every frame, but I imagine that with only 10K of RAM in compo-eligible games, keeping a log of the past quarter second of saved states would be practical.


Nope. Or none that I know of.

But our community (tecmo super bowl) has been using nestopia with p2p kailerra for years for netplay. You get very smooth 60FPS emulation with anywhere from 1-5 (2-4 most typical) frames of lag depending on where the two players are playing from.

If one person has a high or "spikey" latency problem then you get the dreaded FPS slowdown or temporary "freezing" as the emu+kaillerra is waiting for the inputs to arrive before continuing with emulation.


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 9:39 pm 
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dougeff wrote:
I don't even have 4 controllers.


If there were more 4-player games you might ;-)

(I bought one awhile back, but have always been disappointed at the low number and low quality of the 4-player games available)

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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2016 1:00 am 
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gauauu wrote:
I didn't realize the competition was geared towards single-player games only.


I don't think it is geared towards single player games, it's just easier to make a single game compared to a multiplayer game (at least in my mind).


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2016 8:09 am 
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gauauu wrote:
(I bought one awhile back, but have always been disappointed at the low number and low quality of the 4-player games available)


Agreed. I've always felt this peripheral was under utilized. I'm often hanging out with more than one friend, and there are very few 4-player NES games worth playing. I remember playing with my brother and two cousins when I was a kid and the only games I really remember for it were Super Off-Road and Super Spike.

Slightly different system but my favorite use of the multi-tap is probably Secret of Mana, granted it's not always easy to find two friends with enough time to play through an RPG cooperatively. I also liked the addition of multiplayer for FFIII (IV) even if it's only two players. With a game format like that, adding a second player is minimal effort for the possibility of a great enhancement to gameplay.

Although I'd suggest having a single player option for sure as this is probably the most frequently used gameplay mode.


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2016 8:52 am 
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darryl.revok wrote:
Agreed. I've always felt [the Four Score] peripheral was under utilized.

Apart from obvious flicker if all four characters get on the same line, being able to tell the four players' characters apart is part of it. All three ways have limits.
  1. Palette swaps: Four characters use up all four palettes, leaving no room for anything else on the screen.
  2. Not palette swaps, CHR ROM: Four characters use up all four MMC3 sprite tile windows (2-5, mapped at $1000, $1400, $1800, and $1C00), leaving no room for anything else on the screen.
  3. Not palette swaps, CHR RAM: Four characters animated at 15 fps with 128 bytes per cel (the Battletoads/Haunted: Halloween '85 solution) use up all the VRAM update time, leaving little time for anything else on the screen. Because player-controlled characters are less predictable than NPCs with simple AI, the predictive double buffering method used in HH85 is less effective.

Using a TurboTap, Team Player, or Super Multitap on the fourth-generation platforms is more effective for a couple reasons. First, the memory controllers on the Genesis and Super NES have DMA to rapidly copy in all four players' cels. The TurboGrafx-16 CPU has block transfer instructions to do the same thing. Second, the TurboGrafx-16 and Super NES have eight or more sprite palettes. The big limit is that coprocessors in Super NES cartridges (notably the Super FX) draw too much power to be used with the Multitap, as do specialized controllers such as the Super NES Mouse.


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2016 9:15 am 
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tepples wrote:
coprocessors in Super NES cartridges (notably the Super FX) draw too much power to be used with the Multitap

Wait, what will happen if you have the Multitap and a Super FX game in at the same time? Will it fry the SNES for trying to draw too much power, or is there like a circuit breaker in it? (I don't know too much about electricity... :lol: )

I just hope the SDD1 doesn't draw too much power, because that's the only chip I've considered using.


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 Post subject: Re: Space Race
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2016 9:48 am 
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I'm going by what I read in Fullsnes, and there's probably something in the official developer's manual about it. But you probably don't want to risk burning out the Control Deck's voltage regulator over time.

The other practical problem with 4-player games is that you might not be able to find enough willing players nearby once you've graduated from the after-school use case. It's not like PCs and modern consoles, where Internet play is the norm. I had enough problems finding play testers for RHDE: Furniture Fight, and that was only 2 players.


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