Re: [stella] Poker Solitaire

Subject: Re: [stella] Poker Solitaire
From: "Erik J. Eid" <eeid@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 22 Nov 2001 22:21:18 -0500
At 06:39 PM 11/16/01 -0500, Brian Watson wrote:
Been a while since I posted here... Work's keeping me busy, got a big
backlog of list mail.

That's understandable... it's been very busy in the list and outside of it. I haven't been posting much myself except to say that I hit the 4K barrier again. :)

Just recently, somebody taught me to play a card game called Poker
Solitaire... so naturally I had the idea to code it up for the 2600.

Wow! It's certainly nice to see another card game make its way to the 2600. This should satisfy a lot of people who want a quick game for a break that's something a little different. (Someone on AtariAge bemoaned the lack of good puzzle games for the 2600, so this may help alleviate that.)

I use the English scoring system, except that I think a royal flush should
be worth more than a non-royal straight flush, so I score 40 for the royal
and 30 for the non-royal straight flush (though I have yet to actually get
a royal flush in any hand!)

In my first game I came so close! I had the jack, queen, ace, and ten of hearts. The king never showed up. :(

Joystick movement is a little wonky (try it)

My problem wasn't so much with the joystick (I was playing on Z26), but with the trigger. It seemed that it would take a couple of tries to place a card on some occasions.

And maybe the worst problem of all: The entire game only takes up the
right-hand side of the display. I'm drawing 5 cards, using interleaved
players 0 and 1 [snip] using NUSIZ0=6, NUSIZ1=2, so each card is 8 clocks wide, with 8 blank clocks between columns

I'm impressed! Despite needing the left side for the calculations, you did something that I dreaded trying with Euchre. That's why Euchre has the vertical orientation. I had a hard enough time getting the West and East players' cards on the same horizontal lines. Two cards was enough!

When you first start up the game, the deck is being shuffled. I keep
displaying the first 25 cards of the deck while it's happening, which
I think might be the coolest effect I've ever achieved on the 2600 :)

I agree that this is pretty darn cool. Not only is it nice to look at, but you've got a built-in attract mode! After a game ends, you could wait about 15-30 seconds, then start the shuffling while maintaining the previous score.

So as usual, asking everyone for their opinion... does it suck? if so,
can it be made to suck less? Does the fact that the display only takes
up half the screen really matter? (this is a matter of taste I guess).

It doesn't suck. :)

I'm not sure that I like the sickly-yellow card color, but that might simply be how Z26 is displaying the cards. Regarding playing only on the right side of the screen, wasn't some 2600 Tetris clone primarily on one side? There are other games that use only a portion of the screen, such as Dodge 'Em (mostly the lower part), 3-D Tic Tac Toe (the center), and Qb (while there is a target grid showing, the action is in the left and center).

Looking forward to more...

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