[stella] Reflex Update (source and binary)

Subject: [stella] Reflex Update (source and binary)
From: "Lee Fastenau" <stella@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2005 01:00:29 -0400
Hello all,

I've made some serious headway in Reflex development over the last month or
so.  The two major changes are:

1) Revamped "paddle english" code.  The ball reacts differently to the edges
of the paddle as one might expect... But it's a delta of the reflected exit
velocity versus a fixed exit velocity.  (Just play with it and please tell
me how much you hate it!) 

2) Varying screens/levels!  Hit Reset to start the game at level 1... hit it
repeatedly to cycle through the 20 __test__ levels included.  Once the ball
starts moving, hitting reset returns to level 1 and starts a new game.  I
realize there are some timing issues here... particularly on a real console,
I found it difficult to hit reset multiple times and then grab the joystick
quickly enough before the ball went into play.  I also want to implement
"start game on joystick button press" but we'll see...

Some additional notes:

Change between one player, two-player competitive, two-player cooperative
modes and control modes using Select.  Hit Reset to start (see #2 above).
I've grown partial to joystick controls since the driving controller begins
to mis-register when you move it quickly... This, unfortunately, is a
limitation of the hardware design.  Feedback on the driving control scheme
is welcome (Keep it? Toss it? Suggestions for improvement?).

Right now, the ball increases velocity after every 20 paddle hits (I think).
Anyway, it's some arbitrary number at this point and I'll do some serious
game-balancing and fine-tuning later.  I just quickly coded that part to
help make playing this alpha more fun.

Additional testing on a PAL TV would also be great.  If you have a SECAM TV,
you can set that option in the source near the top and re-assemble it to get
better colors.  Hit the color/bw switch to cycle through
NTSC/PAL(SECAM)60/PAL(SECAM)50.  You can also hold Select or Reset at
power-on to start in PAL60 or PAL50 respectively... this works on my
SuperCharger, but I can't reproduce it in emulators.

I do go over budget on scanlines for 1 frame while each level is decoded...
please tell me how deeply offended you are by this... or if it's
forgivable... or if your TV explodes.  (I'm not paying for it!)

Thanks, everyone. :)

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