New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

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Jonas
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New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Jonas » Sat Jul 21, 2018 3:32 am

Hi!

I'd like to show you INTO THE BLUE, a new game I just released. It's for the Game Boy, but I hope it is still not a problem to post it in this section. The goal of my project was to create a game that looks and feels like a commercial game from back in the day. The result is a puzzle game that plays similar to Tetris Attack.

It's free, so please check it out on my website https://the-green-screen.com!

Here are some screenshots:

Image Image Image Image

I hope that you like it!

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by lidnariq » Sat Jul 21, 2018 11:53 pm

This is cool! But I keep on having a problem with creating single columns of tiles and I can't clear them.

Out of curiosity, when I look at the ROM, I see that banks 2-5 each contain a copy of a random subset of the previous bank. Do you think it might be possible to pack this into a 64K ROM instead of a 128K ROM?

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Jonas
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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Jonas » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:54 am

Thanks lidnariq! :D
lidnariq wrote: Out of curiosity, when I look at the ROM, I see that banks 2-5 each contain a copy of a random subset of the previous bank. Do you think it might be possible to pack this into a 64K ROM instead of a 128K ROM?
The complete code of the game fits in banks 1 and 2. Banks 2 to 5 contain only music and sound data. I use a self-made music engine that stores all the music data uncompressed, so it is plausible that there is a lot of redundancy in these banks. With some compression the whole game would surely fit in 4 banks but I simply didn't care about the size of the ROM file.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by lidnariq » Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:28 am

I wasn't really thinking about compression. I was just observing that it tentatively looks like there's actually only 64K of data in the eight 16K banks.
Banks #7 and 8 are all 0, the last 8187 bytes of bank #6 is a copy of the last 8187 bytes of bank #5, the last 2087 bytes of bank #5 are a copy of the last 2087 bytes of bank #4, the last 2545 bytes of bank #4 are a copy of the last 2545 bytes of bank #3, the last 9240 bytes of bank #3 are a copy of the last 9240 bytes of bank #2. (i.e. your linker is doing something a little confusing?)

I guess if I add up all the maybe-padding, there's 8187+2087+2545+9240+375+5296 = 27730 bytes, which isn't quite 32768, so converting from the current 96K to 64K would actually require effort instead of just shuffling.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by zzo38 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:35 am

lidnariq wrote:This is cool! But I keep on having a problem with creating single columns of tiles and I can't clear them.
Same thing I noticed (even though I try to avoid such a single column, by breaking the panels underneath and by other ways). But game still seems good though.
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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Banshaku » Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:41 am

I tried the game and it look good but I have no idea on how to play the game so I'm just playing randomly :lol: I need to learn the rule first before giving a better review. I'm not much knowledgeable about puzzle game unfortunately.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by lidnariq » Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:45 am

It's a match-three game (like Tetris Attack or Bejeweled) crossed with a sliding-tile puzzle.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Jonas » Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:12 am

lidnariq wrote:I wasn't really thinking about compression. I was just observing that it tentatively looks like there's actually only 64K of data in the eight 16K banks.
Banks #7 and 8 are all 0, the last 8187 bytes of bank #6 is a copy of the last 8187 bytes of bank #5, the last 2087 bytes of bank #5 are a copy of the last 2087 bytes of bank #4, the last 2545 bytes of bank #4 are a copy of the last 2545 bytes of bank #3, the last 9240 bytes of bank #3 are a copy of the last 9240 bytes of bank #2. (i.e. your linker is doing something a little confusing?)

I guess if I add up all the maybe-padding, there's 8187+2087+2545+9240+375+5296 = 27730 bytes, which isn't quite 32768, so converting from the current 96K to 64K would actually require effort instead of just shuffling.
OK, I understand. The reason for this is probably that RGBDS fills empty space with something else. As already stated, there should only be code and data in banks 0 to 5, the rest should be empty. In banks 2 to 5 there should be some space left over in each bank. This is because I wanted to keep the data for each of the four songs (title screen plus three in-game songs) in one bank. The space after the respective song should be empty (which it apparently isn't).
zzo38 wrote:
lidnariq wrote:This is cool! But I keep on having a problem with creating single columns of tiles and I can't clear them.
Same thing I noticed (even though I try to avoid such a single column, by breaking the panels underneath and by other ways). But game still seems good though.
Normally single colums start to pile up either on the very right or left side of the screen. If you want to get better, try to clear panels on the very right or left wherever you can and avoid to clear too much from the middle of the screen. For beginners it's also better to clear panels horizontally instead of vertically to avoid building single columns.
Banshaku wrote:I tried the game and it look good but I have no idea on how to play the game so I'm just playing randomly :lol: I need to learn the rule first before giving a better review. I'm not much knowledgeable about puzzle game unfortunately.
Match three panels horizontally or vertically to let them disappear. Press B to let the next line of panels appear immediately. Pressing Start will pause the game.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by zzo38 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:21 am

Jonas wrote:
zzo38 wrote:
lidnariq wrote:This is cool! But I keep on having a problem with creating single columns of tiles and I can't clear them.
Same thing I noticed (even though I try to avoid such a single column, by breaking the panels underneath and by other ways). But game still seems good though.
Normally single colums start to pile up either on the very right or left side of the screen. If you want to get better, try to clear panels on the very right or left wherever you can and avoid to clear too much from the middle of the screen. For beginners it's also better to clear panels horizontally instead of vertically to avoid building single columns.
Yes, I did think of that and tried to do that and that is how I managed to try. Now I can try again.

Is there a high score menu?
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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Jonas » Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:43 am

zzo38 wrote:Yes, I did think of that and tried to do that and that is how I managed to try. Now I can try again.

Is there a high score menu?
Hope that you like it! :D

Sorry, but there is no high score menu. You can check your final score on the game over screen but the game doesn't save it.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by tepples » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:19 pm

It's apparently hard enough to manufacture a production cartridge with an MBC so it can address more than 32K of ROM, let alone battery RAM to save the high score across a power cycle. Catskull cartridges are only 32K and have neither an MBC nor battery RAM, and this limit has led developers of homebrew Game Boy games to omit battery RAM support from their game designs.

Or is zzo38 playing on an EverDrive GB X5 or other flash cart with SRAM?

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by rychan » Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:12 pm

Looks (and sounds) good! I'm currently struggling with making compresion work for lil deflemask to gameboy (GBDK) convertor I'm working on. It plays okay but I can see massive gains in music compression. Just need to get the bugger to work properly!

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Sumez » Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:27 pm

Really smooth looking game, I always appreciate the work going into that kind of stuff.
However, it appears to me a lot of the symbols are ripped pretty much straight from Mario and Kirby games, is that right? At least they look awfully familiar in the way they are drawn. I think this is a game that definitely deserves original graphics.

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by Jonas » Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:50 am

Sumez wrote:Really smooth looking game, I always appreciate the work going into that kind of stuff.
However, it appears to me a lot of the symbols are ripped pretty much straight from Mario and Kirby games, is that right? At least they look awfully familiar in the way they are drawn. I think this is a game that definitely deserves original graphics.
Thanks! :) The visual design is heavily inspired by the games you mentioned and that obviously shows but the assets are still all my own work (the only exception being the music which consists of chiptune renditions of songs by famous Ragtime composer Scott Joplin).

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Re: New Game for the Game Boy: INTO THE BLUE

Post by rychan » Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:04 am

It's a shame there's no real support for homebrew gameboy cartridges (to be sold) over the 32kb limit.

I'm currently waiting for an old 32kb gameboy color game I made a while ago to be put onto cartridge, although if I hear of anyone with MBC support I'll let you know if you're interested of course.

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