FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

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Bananmos
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Bananmos » Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:00 pm

Not to mention 4 play areas wont fit on screen right now.
Missed this comment before... but the whole point of the co-operative mode as done in Tengen's Tetris is that the players share the same playfield, so there's no additional screen space needed with more players. A fun detail is that Tengen's Tetris even allows you to play the co-op mode with a CPU player for those who have no friends - though the AI ain't the best. :)

So that's basically why I suggested it. I figured that play mode really fits the theme of your game with villagers cooperating together to fend off the Kraken, and I've also not seen that mode of play supported in any other Tetris version I've come across.

rox_midge
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by rox_midge » Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:15 pm

This really is fabulous. I love the look and feel, and the gameplay is spot on. The fact that the Kraken is sleeping during classic mode makes me smile :)

My only critiques are very minor (aside from the earlier complete rewrite I proposed):

It takes a long time to start the game after pressing start, and the SFX kind of sounds like a "game paused" sound. Maybe change the "press start" to "get ready" (or something similar) and flash it more quickly just before the game starts?

Working the options menu was non-obvious, which isn't a dealbreaker since it's not part of the game. It just wasn't clear to me how to get back to the main menu after I was done setting options - I kept trying to hit select again.

After the game is over, I think pressing start should return you to the main menu. I wanted to try each game mode in turn, but the only way to do so was to reset the console.

Like I said, the gameplay itself is perfect, and hopefully it will fare just as well with different block shapes! :D

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Goose2k
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Goose2k » Sun Jun 28, 2020 9:11 pm

Bananmos wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:00 pm
Not to mention 4 play areas wont fit on screen right now.
Missed this comment before... but the whole point of the co-operative mode as done in Tengen's Tetris is that the players share the same playfield, so there's no additional screen space needed with more players. A fun detail is that Tengen's Tetris even allows you to play the co-op mode with a CPU player for those who have no friends - though the AI ain't the best. :)

So that's basically why I suggested it. I figured that play mode really fits the theme of your game with villagers cooperating together to fend off the Kraken, and I've also not seen that mode of play supported in any other Tetris version I've come across.
Yah, I realized after the fact you were not talking about 2player versus mode. Sorry about that! But yah, that would be insane with 4 players AHAH!
rox_midge wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:15 pm
This really is fabulous. I love the look and feel, and the gameplay is spot on. The fact that the Kraken is sleeping during classic mode makes me smile :)

My only critiques are very minor (aside from the earlier complete rewrite I proposed):

It takes a long time to start the game after pressing start, and the SFX kind of sounds like a "game paused" sound. Maybe change the "press start" to "get ready" (or something similar) and flash it more quickly just before the game starts?

Working the options menu was non-obvious, which isn't a dealbreaker since it's not part of the game. It just wasn't clear to me how to get back to the main menu after I was done setting options - I kept trying to hit select again.

After the game is over, I think pressing start should return you to the main menu. I wanted to try each game mode in turn, but the only way to do so was to reset the console.

Like I said, the gameplay itself is perfect, and hopefully it will fare just as well with different block shapes! :D
Those critiques are great. I will add them to my todo and try to include them in the next release. Thanks so much!!

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Goose2k
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Goose2k » Sun Jun 28, 2020 11:09 pm

Spent the whole night trying to design original block pieces for the game... and they are just not fun to play in any way. :(

Pretty bummed out. Thought this part would be easy. Maybe need to abandon the idea of original blocks. :|
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lidnariq
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by lidnariq » Sun Jun 28, 2020 11:36 pm

The only place I really remember something analogous was Blockout, where a variety of polycubes (all the way from 1 to 5?) are part of the basic set.

I remember an unlicensed "line clearing" game for the NES that used polyiamonds (equilateral triangles) instead. It ... wasn't any fun, but maybe that was problem in the details rather than the idea.

I wonder if you could get away with only some of the tetrominos and use other polyminos to round it out.

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defkode
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by defkode » Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:09 am

What makes Tetris Tetris?

https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2012/06/ ... ng-clones/
But by keeping the basic, high-level definition of Tetris so broad, the judge also granted full copyright protection to a lot of pretty basic elements of the Tetris experience, explicitly including:

The dimensions of the playing field [20 squares high by ten squares wide].
The display of "garbage" lines [the random junk that can optionally appear at the start of a game].
The appearance of "ghost" or shadow pieces [which highlight where a piece is going to land].
The display of the next piece to fall.
The change in color of the pieces when they lock with the accumulated pieces.
The appearance of squares automatically filling in the game board when the game is over.

dink
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by dink » Mon Jun 29, 2020 5:24 am

IMO stick with tetris-style shapes

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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by M_Tee » Mon Jun 29, 2020 8:56 am

Have you played dushlan?
https://github.com/soiaf/Dushlan

It included some extra shapes.

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Goose2k
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Goose2k » Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:56 am

M_Tee wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 8:56 am
Have you played dushlan?
https://github.com/soiaf/Dushlan

It included some extra shapes.
I hadn't but I played for a little bit just now. It's funny, I think every extra block they added are the same ones I made. I guess the possibilities are pretty limited. :D

The game has a lot of nice features though! The level structure is fun, and I like that there are new mechanics added constantly.

Just those controls are so clucky... really kills it for me. Feels like I am playing in quick sand.
dink wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 5:24 am
IMO stick with tetris-style shapes
That's kind of where I am at too, mentally. Just accept that I can never release this commercially and release the best version of the game for free with Tetris blocks.
lidnariq wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 11:36 pm
I wonder if you could get away with only some of the tetrominos and use other polyminos to round it out.
I'm not too sure. It sounds like no. What I went with was a mix of 3 and 5 piece blocks, and some with gaps (which looks weird and isn't very fun tbh).
defkode wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:09 am
What makes Tetris Tetris?

https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2012/06/ ... ng-clones/
But by keeping the basic, high-level definition of Tetris so broad, the judge also granted full copyright protection to a lot of pretty basic elements of the Tetris experience, explicitly including:

The dimensions of the playing field [20 squares high by ten squares wide].
The display of "garbage" lines [the random junk that can optionally appear at the start of a game].
The appearance of "ghost" or shadow pieces [which highlight where a piece is going to land].
The display of the next piece to fall.
The change in color of the pieces when they lock with the accumulated pieces.
The appearance of squares automatically filling in the game board when the game is over.
Thanks. Everywhere I look I get a different legal summary of what Tetris Co. owns. I think the truth is, it doesn't really matter. Even if I managed to avoid all those things, if they send a cease and desist, I'm just going to have to take it down anyway.

Bananmos
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Bananmos » Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:49 am

Goose2k wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:56 am

That's kind of where I am at too, mentally. Just accept that I can never release this commercially and release the best version of the game for free with Tetris blocks.

[...]

Thanks. Everywhere I look I get a different legal summary of what Tetris Co. owns. I think the truth is, it doesn't really matter. Even if I managed to avoid all those things, if they send a cease and desist, I'm just going to have to take it down anyway.
Well, does it actually make a difference whether you release this commercially or not?

I'm certainly not an expert in copyright law... but my understanding is that the "I'm just giving it away for free!" cop-out making any difference whatsoever to whether legal action can be taken (and damages claimed) is the most long-living myth among young software developers. Frankly, I don't think this makes much difference at all in a potential legal case. Except perhaps that:

1) It could be argued the creator whose copyright might be infringed would be more ticked off if the copy-cat is being sold for money and thus more tempted to take legal action. i.e., that no matter what the law says about it they have the same *emotional* feeling about a product that is sold being worse than being given away for free.

2) Any marketing (which say a Kickstarter campaign would be) might draw more attention, and could also be argued to add confusion among consumers between which product is which. i.e., you won't stay off the radar as much.

3) When something is being sold it makes it a bit easier to track down and take action against the creator. But then again, you're already not completely anonymous as the creator of this IP?

My honest opinion would be that despite TTC's history, the risk for litigation seems relatively low because taking legal action against a NES homebrew looks like more trouble than it's worth compared to Tetris lookalikes for active systems. But neither should it be disregarded entirely.

And I would think that the most reasonable course of action is:
- Make the game different enough to your inspiration that you can genuinely convince yourself that it *is* in fact a different enough game from Tetris, and can honestly argue your case if you get in trouble. Because intent *does* matter in law.

- Accept that if trouble does show up at your doorstep you will probably still have to fold due to not having the financial / emotional resources to fight your case.

That's my two cents. But definitely don't take this as any form of professional advice on the matter. I'm just trying to highlight that it's not as clear-cut as "I'll be fine if I just give it away" or "I'll be in trouble if I sell it", whichever way it goes.

Again, I believe the commercial-or-not factor is of very minor relevance here. But anyone with more insight - please do correct me if I'm totally wrong here.

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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Goose2k » Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:15 am

Bananmos wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:49 am
- Accept that if trouble does show up at your doorstep you will probably still have to fold due to not having the financial / emotional resources to fight your case.
Yah, this is what I meant by "it doesn't matter". Even if I am completely within my rights to release the game, I would never invest any money in defending that.

My actual fear is investing a whole bunch of time and effort to make this completely original, and still getting a cease and desist forcing me to take it down. That would be worst case for me.

I'd rather just make something simple and feel ok walking away if needed. Again, this is just a learning project for me; a stepping stone to bigger and better things (hopefully)! :D
Bananmos wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:49 am
I'm certainly not an expert in copyright law... but my understanding is that the "I'm just giving it away for free!" cop-out making any difference whatsoever to whether legal action can be taken (and damages claimed) is the most long-living myth among young software developers. Frankly, I don't think this makes much difference at all in a potential legal case.
I think you are right, but as you mentioned, there are probably a number of factors that come into play once you start appear to profit off it.

And as I mentioned above, I'm not really thinking about being sued. More thinking about time investment in something that could be shutdown at any moment.

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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Goose2k » Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:00 pm

New personal best in "Timed" mode: 116 lines! :D
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dink
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by dink » Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:26 am

Your latest build is probably my favorite tetris game ever :)

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Goose2k
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by Goose2k » Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:34 am

dink wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:26 am
Your latest build is probably my favorite tetris game ever :)
You're my favorite "dink" ever! And you're going on the back of the box too!! :o

Seriously though thanks! These comments really keep me motivated! I got a few more things that I think will make it even better, so stay tuned!

And hey look, I got a new high score! 126 lines in the darkest of nights...
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dink
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Re: FROM BELOW (Tetris-like) [WIP NES Homebrew]

Post by dink » Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:10 pm

:)
I made level 8, 81 last play!

Edit to say one thing: I didn't like the idea of the octopus when I read this devlog -but- my opinion strongly changed in favor of it after playing the latest build. 3 out of 4 times it actually worked out in my favor. I love it :)

best regards,
- dink

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