Re: [stella] VCS simulator (?)

Subject: Re: [stella] VCS simulator (?)
From: <kurt.woloch@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 21 Apr 1998 11:27:23 +0200
On Monday, April 20th, P. Cavina wrote:

>Do you know this strange program?
>This is an excerpt from the docs:
>>                         V C S    S I M U L A T O R
>>The latest news, binaries and "VCSS cartriges" can be found at:
>There's a quite impressive Ewok Adventure game with it...
>This project doesn't seem to have gathered a lot of interest... but I think
>it is worth a try.
>I'd like to hear your opinion about it...

Well, I downloaded it and had a try... It seems that the author
over-expected the 2600's graphics
capabilities. The colour-cycling demo seems quite OK, but Ewok's
Adventure does far mor than the 2600 really can do. The title screen
seems even hard to do on a Atari 8-bit computer, but impossible on  a
2600, having several hi-res colors on one scanline and lines wider than
48 pixels. The game itself - well, in principle could probably be done,
but not without flicker, and maybe with some more restrictions. For
instance, the spaceship (or whatever it shoud be) is drawn in 2 colors
(the ship and its shadow), which on the 2600 would use up both players.
The same applies for some enemies. Moreover, when the ship goes into
diagonal movement, it's got a width of more than 8 pixels, which
definitely couldn't be done on a 2600 with the shadow - even without,
you'd need both players for this. Then there are the trees, which could
probably be done via the playfield, but appear in different colors on
one scanline, and in a way that would make it impossible having them
being a simple reflected or repeated playfield. Finally, the unzipped
version of Ewok's Adventure is about 130 k long (!!!). I guess this game
(following the 2600 constraints) could be implemented in an 8 k ROM, if
not in 4 K (maybe leaving out the title screen).

With love (and spear),
Kurt Woloch

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