Re: [stella] Reflex: Source of PAIN!

Subject: Re: [stella] Reflex: Source of PAIN!
From: KirkIsrael@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Date: 5 Apr 2004 04:45:55 -0000
<Insert usual "looking very good very quickly" comment here>

> 	* Paddle reflection needs MUCH work.

Yeah, I take it the paddle is still acting like wall in terms of 
simple reflections...the "virtual concave" surface will add a lot 
to the gameplay.

The thing where it gets caught 'in' the paddle...seems like a 
pretty straightforward issue, the paddle zooms in on the side,
boom, you get a reflection like each flame.  I can't think of 
any way to solve it except basing the post reflection velocities 
on the ball's position on screen, not just on its previous velocities
(i.e. if the ball is high but centered when it hits, it's post 
reflection veolcity will be down. And its left/right speed "should"
be based on it's position relative to the center of the paddle)

You know what game mode might be really interesting? Multiball.
The player has 2 paddles, why not have 'em juggling two balls
at once?  (besides the obvious jokes it brings up.  Maybe you need
to start calling theme "spheroids" or something for idiots like me 
with the sense of humor of an 11-yr-old.) And you've already considered 
making the ball w/ one player--losing the nice reflection look, but might be worth it, I think it would add some great punch, 
esp. how at this point the game is easy.  I know that ease might change, 
but if you know you have a kernal that can position two balls,
why not?

> There's a high level (and incomplete) to-do list in the source now.  In lieu
> of solving some problems with the gameplay (y'know, that trivial part of any
> game project), I opted to clean up the code (a lot) and spend some time on
> the title/options screen.

What's that thingy at top of the title screen?
Oh, i see, it's a joystick.  Heh. (I swear I didn't realize at first,
not just trying to make a funny)
Is that a normal player graphic?  There might be a way of making a
more identifiable icon.


(it looked better on playerpal, I swear, )

or just filling in the line between base and stick
on yours would help, if you wanted to keep it 8 by 8,
maybe (or not) bend it a bit:


heck, maybe it would even look ok to alternate that 



in between. Just some cheesy animation. I dunno, maybe the title 
screen is "busy" enough

> One of the most important changes in the source is the heavier use of
> JSR/RTS.  I don't believe the calls go any deeper than 2 levels, using 4
> bytes of stack space at most.  The JSR's have made the code much more
> flexible and makes managing game "states" a cinch.  While the code is easier
> to navigate, I have to admit that I've cut back on the commenting.  I'm
> getting pretty comfortable with assembly and am coding a bit faster, which
> is not to say I'm great at it... but I do have a cool gameMode byte that
> contains a 3-bit counter and 5 mode flags! :)

I'm sure you're doing fine.  I was so free -n- easy with my RAM use
it was pathetic.  

I never got into JSR/RTS.  Which is probably awful--in a higher level
language, I'm all about proper reuse, but for some reason, I
got scared of it from something in the Dig, maybe Nick's old stuff,
about how a "real program" wouldn't do so much subroutining...but real
world experience shows me that, except for the kernal, things don't 
generally have to be as hyper optimized in the rest of the game.

On the other hand, JSR/RTS does eat into RAM a tiny bit, stackwise,

> All manner of feedback is welcome and even encouraged!

"All manner", huh?  You realize, techincally, that could include
commentary in the form of digital pictures of one of us with 
specific comments in bodypaint on our naked body. I don't think
any of us want that, so please be careful what you might hve  
"encouraged" there. 

Luckily, I am a beacon of restraint, and limited my comments
to the usual pure text e-mail, generally "constructive" variety.

Well, except for the ASCII art.

Every man is working out his own way [to ordination] and nobody can be 
of help except by being kind, generous, and patient. --Henry Miller

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