Subject: Re: [stella] Reflex: Online level editor|
From: "B. Watson" <atari@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 15 Sep 2004 09:22:06 -0400 (EDT)
Okay, I'm wowed. As a newbie to all of this, I assumed that any compression would be futile because it would take too long. I guess I still don't understand why you wouldn't allow a cartridge to go to 8k (or even 32k), though? Isn't 4k more of an arbitrary limit, nowadays?
Yes and no... I tend to stick with 4K ROMs for my projects because I actually can play them on a hardware 2600 (have EPROM burner and homebrew cart with EPROM socket, but no bankswitch hardware).
Also there's the challenge of squeezing your game to fit. Also, some of us want to create a `period piece': a game that's created with similar limitations to what the original Atari programmers had to live with.
I will confess I don't quite maintain historical accuracy: `Poker Squares' was written in vi (which did exist back then, dunno if it was used for 2600 development), but using perl scripts to generate some of the data (pretty sure perl didn't yet exist back then, if it did it was a really early, lame version), and using an emulator for testing. I could do an edit/compile/test cycle in seconds. I don't know how long it would have taken someone in 1978, but the process would have involved burning an EPROM because nothing was fast enough to do 2600 emulation...
As a newbie you don't know Thomas :) He's the master of doing the (seemingly) impossible... Pay attention to him, you'll learn much.