Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Propose new game/software design concepts or new game/software ideas. They can be as whimsical as you like, just be careful you don't ask someone to make it for you...
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Lee Bee
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Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Lee Bee » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:26 am

I was just looking at the stunning game 'Old Tower' with colour vertical scrolling!

This got me thinking… why can't you have a "vertical" Spectrum Game? Many arcade games are "vertical" - with the screen turned 90° to the side. In the 80s you couldn't turn your TV on its side, but we now live in an age of light-weight screens, pivoting monitors and hand-held screens that can be turned 90°. So who's to say that Spectrum games can't be vertical too?

Of course, the big benefit of having a vertical Spectrum game would allow a SIDEWAYS colour scroller! Surely this would be the holy grail? Just a thought :)

By the way, hi, I'm new to the forum :) My hobby is making AY music :)
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by R-Tape » Tue Nov 26, 2019 9:15 am

Hi Lee. Welcome to the forum!

I have mixed feelings on this idea. Even though I don’t have one of these fancy pivot screens, I’d find a way to play and enjoy such a project (even though it would be a bit like making coffee in a microwave!); on the other hand I’d rather see people put their energy into making a proper vertical scrolling multicolour shmup. Denis has proved this is possible, and let’s not forget River Raid.

It’s a shame that not many coders are doing this kind of thing these days. I’m as guilty as anyone on that score.
Lee Bee wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:26 am
By the way, hi, I'm new to the forum :) My hobby is making AY music :)
Great. Is your stuff online anywhere?
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Ralf
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Ralf » Tue Nov 26, 2019 9:48 am

In the 80s you couldn't turn your TV on its side
Well, if you were daring enough, you COULD turn your TV on its side. The problem was that usually your mum and dad used it to watch tv and they wouldn't be happy seeing you doing it ;)

And welcome to the forums !
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Lee Bee
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Lee Bee » Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:17 am

Hey thanks for the welcome guys! :) I am such a fan of you both! Dave has made so many great games! Bean Brothers is just amazing! :) I love the Bifrost games! :)
R-Tape wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 9:15 am
on the other hand I’d rather see people put their energy into making a proper vertical scrolling multicolour shmup.
My idea to rotate the screen is not to allow a colour vertical scroller (which we already have), but to allow a colour horizontal scroller - eg a platform game like Mario Bros that can have true horizontal scrolling (not jerky whole-tile scrolling).
R-Tape wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 9:15 am
Great. Is your stuff online anywhere?
Not yet, but I'm hoping to get my work out there soon :) I'll probably set up some kind of blog / YouTube channel. I love making original music, as well as accurately copying tunes from other systems, especially arcade games (eg I've done all 4 OutRun tunes, Bubble Bobble, Shinobi, etc).

Back in the 90s I also made tons of Amiga music (both original and copied game tunes), but the last few years I have returned to my favourite games machine, the Spectrum :) And this is where I intend to stay!

I'm currently talking with Ralf about trying to add some of my music to his amazing colour mods (eg Rod-Land, Golden Axe) :) We shall see how it goes! :)
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by druellan » Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:47 am

Let's not forget this experiment from a couple of years ago that looks promising, but never got implemented into a real game.

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Un buen día me puse a probar juegos de ZX Spectrum a ciegas en Youtube, terminó siendo:
📺 Retroarqueología en Youtube

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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Joefish » Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:55 am

I was trying to do a horizontally scrolling multicolour shooter but it's HARD. It's fairly easy to write a routine to do the background graphics. The problem is you need a lot of moving sprites - both for enemies and shots - and the variable timing that can give you is a bit of a nightmare. That's why I started on an ordinary attribute shoot-em-up, just to figure out all the things that need to happen. Making it 128K-only helps (thanks to screen-flipping), but then everyone wants tedious in-game multi-channel music and all that baws. Mind you, some people can't deal with 48K games that don't have an annoying continuous soundtrack anyway... :roll:

As for River Raid, has anyone done a good analysis of how the procedurally generated canyons are done, so I could try adding the algorithm to the scroller?
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Joefish » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:08 pm

Actually, Speccy River Raid seems different to the Atari original. As well as the higher res graphics, the river shifts sideways in places, whereas the Atari original is always symmetric. I can't see if it deliberately makes the river narrower (or uses bigger islands) to make it harder, or if that's just part of the random pattern. Also, the Speccy one may just be pre-programmed patterns anyway.
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Joefish » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:10 pm

As for a scrolling shoot-em-up, I think I'd rather have the multicolour horizontal anyway, for the design of the ships. Although however they move, you've got a problem of having higher precision in one direction than the other.
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Ralf » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:28 pm

I'm currently talking with Ralf about trying to add some of my music to his amazing colour mods (eg Rod-Land, Golden Axe) :) We shall see how it goes! :)
I can confirm that we are in contact :)

Adding music to an existing game may be in many cases harder than altering the graphics. The game may run with disabled interrupts or enable an interrupt only every few frames. And music usually must be played during each frame. Also game may not use music but use AY effects and adding the music will mess with the effects and the effects will mess with the music. And so on.

But each case is different. We shall see what I'll be able to achieve.
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Re: Why not make a VERTICAL game? = Sideways colour scrolling!

Post by Joefish » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:49 pm

That's always been a problem, and we could do with a modern solution for new games.
I'm not sure how you'd want to control the channels though. You could have a routine that progressively steals channels from the tune to play effects, or maybe you could stick to a 2-channel tune without noise effects, then use the third channel for effects. Or even a combination of the two, where you reserve one channel for deep noise effects, play the tune on the other two, and also rob one of those two tune channels for your 'pew-pew' shorter spot noises.
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