Re: [stella] ...

Subject: Re: [stella] ...
From: "Erik J. Eid" <eeid@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 01 Nov 2001 19:52:23 -0500
At 08:04 PM 11/1/01 +1030, Andrew Wallace wrote:
I suspect it is quite difficult to come up with a new game for the 2600
which doesn't remind someone of another game.

There is that. :) Much like the classic statement in which there are only seven or eight types of stories, there are only so many game genres, though these can be mixed or implemented in new and interesting ways.

> also like that the targets move at different speeds, though the jerky
> up-and-down motion could get obnoxious after a while.
I found them looking a little boring when they didn't bobble up and down. If
I have any space left when the rest of the game logic is implemented I will
add some extra animation frames and take out the bobbling.

I wouldn't remove it entirely, as it does draw attention to them and could differentiate some objects from others. I'd just reduce it greatly, otherwise people might complain that it's difficult to look at.

The main purpose of the game is to shoot the other player at the top /
bottom. The objects bobbling in between are there to block the shots, return
the shots or to hide behind, and sometimes to be destroyed, depending on the
difficulty level, energy levels and game type chosen.
Once the energy logic has been implemented the current energy level will
control how far the laser can shoot.

There's the missing link. That definitely makes the game seem more like a game rather than a shooting gallery.

I might consider having some of the objects be double- or quadruple-wide and have them shrink when hit. You could also have some playfield graphics to act as permanent barriers or ones you can destroy. (Think of the MCP cone in the Tron arcade game or the mothership in Phoenix or Gorf.) There might be special objects that change the environment briefly - slowing down the objects so you can line up a clean shot, erecting a temporary barrier by one player, reversing the opponent's controller, etc.

There's a wealth of possibilities that can come from what happens when an object is shot.

I chose this type of game because it seemed like an good fit with the
capabilities of the machine and as such a good choice for a first 'warm-up'

Both of these are very good ideas. Sticking within the capabilities means you don't have to contend with things like intelligent flicker. A warm-up is also good as you can make some progress, have positive results, and not be frustrated by trying to do something fancy right from the start.

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