[stella] A quick intro

Subject: [stella] A quick intro
From: Aaron Bergstrom <Aaron.Bergstrom@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 04 Dec 2002 06:16:01 -0600
Hi... it was suggested to me on Atari Age that I sign up for this mailing list, as it's the list for 2600 developers. I don't claim to be an expert programmer... I've only got a BS in anthropology... but I do alot of Java3D programming in my job as visualization manager for the university archaeology tech lab (http://atl.ndsu.edu/).

Some of you have probably already read about this on Atari Age, but I'm attempting to develop two 2600 games and a Java-based 2600 development environment. I've been told by a couple of guys at work... and specifically by a guy who is supposedly an expert programmer that I don't have the skills to do assembly programming and I'm wasting my time. But I've been told I'm not capable of doing things before... but I try not to listen to those kinds of people.

Anyway, the first game is called "Eric Bergstrom's KC-135". It's a tribute to my brother Eric who passed away a few years ago. But for those who are interested, you can read more about it at the following website:

The other game is actually an extension to my 2600 developers environment. I'm calling my developers environment CAG - or Classic Atari Gamer developers kit. Basically, it is my attempt at making complicated Playfield drawing easier. My radar map for EB's KC-135 took me forever to draw... and I thought it would be nice to be able to create a drawing utility similar to photoshop, paintshop pro... or at least MS Paint for quickly drawing playfields. CAG is being built in modules. The first mod is the playfield utility, but eventually, as I learn more about 2600 programming, I hope to have something that allows to setup drag and drop event routing for collisions and controller inputs.

I've put alot of time into CAG so far so my girlfriend thinks I should sell the software... but as it's probably not going to be a big money maker... and because it was never my intension... I plan on giving it away to homebrew developers. Hopefully it will run on Windows, Mac, and linux. See the url below for screenshots:

But I digress... the second game will actually be the first game I finish using CAG as it is likely to be quite a bit less complicated than EB's KC135. The game "Broomsticks" will be the CAG tutorial game - eventually the tutorial will be viewable via CAG's web-browser (i've alreay written a simple java-based html browser for work) in either HTML or PDF format... I haven't quite decided yet. Broomsticks will be based on the Quiditch game described in the Harry Potter book series.

There will be a vertically scrolling playfield either two or three TV screens in height. The playfield will consist of a soccer-like field surrounded by 8 castle towers. The background will have the look of mowed green grass like you would see on a football field. There will be a goalie for each team, a chaser who's job it is to put the "quafle" or the main ball (the PF ball) through one of the opponent's three scoring rings, two bludger balls (1 for each of the player missles), and a "seeker" whose job it is to catch the snitch ball when it appears (haven't quite figured out yet how to implement the snitch since I've run out of missles). So there are the ideas. I don't have a website for Broomsticks yet.

So that's me. I just thought I'd introduce my self to the group and invite people to look at my stuff.



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