Re: [stella] he got game

Subject: Re: [stella] he got game
From: "Andrew Davie" <atari2600@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 2 Sep 2003 10:26:11 +1000
Here's an idea....

Allow the player's bats to move horizontally left and right.  But make them
"massivly heavy" so once they're moving, they take a fair bit to stop.  Now
base the rebound of the ball upon the horizontal component of the bats'
velocity.  Allow the player to hold the joystick left and right to increase
or decrease the acceleration (note: not position!) of the bats horizontally.
Also make the ball 'massive' so when it hits your bat, you're knocked
backwards (or rather, you are accelerated backwards, and depending on your
current horizontal velocity you will slow down, or move backwards).

This sort of movement system ties in with how I think the bats should move
vertically, anyway.  I believe you should be looking into fractional
movement, a much better system than "add 1 every x frames" is to "add 1/x
every frame".

Allowing the player to shift horizontally over most of his side of the
playfield, AND using the speed of the bat to determine the speed of the ball
rebound COULD allow you to work on a POWER SHOT where you move rapidly to
the ball and try and slam it past the opponent at speed.  However if he gets
it back, you have a large velocity component to dampen which may make it
difficult for you to get to the rebound.  Should add to gameplay.

To summarise:

* Maintain two variables for the objects
    1) their current position
    2) their current speed (x and y)

* When the player flaps (or moves left/right) you don't modify the position,
you modify the speed

* every frame, decelerate (slow down) the speed slightly (if you want

* every frame, add gravity to the speed for those objects affected by

* every frame, after all other calculations are done, the speed is added to
the position to give the new position


----- Original Message ----- 
From: <KirkIsrael@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <stella@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2003 8:19 AM
Subject: Re: [stella] he got game

> > A great start - and now you get to go through the famous #stella
> > optimisation process :)
> Well, with the possible exception of making a stripped down version
> for the 1K contest (I think I have more of a chance at 1K than 4K ;-)
> I'm not looking for *too* many optimisations, yet--my game play is
> so simple that I seem to be doing ok for time and space.
> On the other hand, gameplay enhancements, including a talk about the
> "physics" and the difficulty, I'm all ears for, and that's what you
> were talking about, so...
> > I currently find it almost completely uncontrollable - movement is way
> > rapid.  I'm playing with Z26.  I'd like to see gravity about half of
what it
> > is now (or less!) and have much less powerful flaps (about 1/10th!).
> > really like to have to pump that button like crazy to overcome a
> > but yet have long enough to really do it.
> Is it really that tough?
> I dunno if I've been playing too long.  Right now it's a really
> good difficult for me...I can get a win, but I have to stay on
> my toes.  I wouldn't want it to be too beatable (or boring, where
> the person has to wait too long for the damn ball to come back)
> Plus, pressing the flap button *that* much? Seems like it might
> hurt!
> I might consider this kind of tweak, but it's really tough.
> Right now I'm using a 2 line kernal, so I don't have quite as
> much fine tuning in the vert speed dept.  Plus the way I'm doing gravity
> is a little odd...every X frames, it adds 1 to the downward speed.
> If X is too big, then you get a (not comic and funny, alas) Loony
> Tunes-like delay where the pong bat just hangs there, until it
> notices it's not standing on anything, and then gravity kicks in.
> For horizontal ball speed, it's at it's slowest, 1 thingy per frame.
> I think the only still smooth-looking option I would have would be
> to do a HMOVE every other frame, reducing speed by half, which seems
> like it might be too slow?
> How do people feel about making the vertical speed of the ball
> more complex? Like I said (or, blogged), I'm surprised it works
> as well as it does has one vertical speed, and its opposite,
> but it's still pretty complex feeling. I started my usual trick
> of having the postbounce vertical speed being the prebounce ball
> speed plus the bat speed, but I'll need to put in a speed limiter,
> it was going crazy.
> thanks for the feedback,
> Kirk
> -- 
> KirkIsrael@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>   BAR JOKE #11 A man walks into a bar. He has a few drinks and chats with
>   bartender. Later that night, he goes home and reflects on the poor
>   he's made in life.
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