Tuesday, 22 November 2016

CN10 (aka Brian) on a rampage!

LOL!! I think i'll have his attention...LOL!

OK, CN10 left me a hailstorm of comments:

November 04, 2016: The latest post contains a giant amount of great stuff! My initial comments are:
-I will hopefully have time to play at least one of the games this weekend. The games are like fine paintings, and it's not good to just glance at them. You have to get with the instructions first and then try to work the actual game. (In fact I'm still working on my ability in tennis).
-The pictures of the teleprompter are rather jaw-dropping. I'm not even sure what I'm seeing other than a time juxtaposition of 40 years! Looking forward to read more about that. (Also accentuating my surprise is that I use that very same model of Amiga monitor for retro gaming, with the lower lip opened to adjust the controls. I spent many hours playing Defender of the Crown back in the day, followed by even more hours of It Came from the Desert).
-The Patent reference does clearly talk about a scoreboard. The problem is that it's too easy to spend time checking out the other patent links. I'm still looking for a working example of "Automatic bowling scorer with cathode-ray tube display"
-I've also long believed that Haunted House should be shooting game, like "Shoot out." It would be awesome to see it "updated" in that fashion.
-Speaking of shooting games, do you have thoughts on the ideal hardware set-up for the odysim shooting games? I know they make light guns for an LCD monitor but I don't have one. I do have the old ACT-Labs light gun for PC monitors (but requiring an CRT VGA monitor), and am planning to try this out with the Ody-Sim soon.

Thanks again for your hard work on this fascinating piece of videogame history!

My reply: About the Teleprompter mod, i will discuss about this in the future as well as many other mods/hack for the Magnavox Odyssey. I know that the first one people will ask is the Video output and the second one will be Audio output. I've already done the video output mod and i have made a schematic for the audio output but the circuit isn't built yet. All this and more this upcoming year (2017). You still have oyur Amiga monitor ? Lucky you as mine has kicked the bucket as i accidently dropped the monitor and broke the neck of the CRT. :(

The scoreboard in the patent was to illuminate with a spot a number on the screen but would have needed to resize the wall spot and be able to move it to do so. Was a good idea back then. As for Haunted House as a shooting game, it will be in the "Super OdySim" as this will be another project once the OdySim is finalise.

I did thought abit on this for a LCD light Gun to be able to play with the shooting games with the OdySim, but for now i'm trying to release all the games. As now, there is only four games for the Rifle Gun and three others i've made as homebrews for it. Maybe another project ?

But if anyone wanna use a real Rifle Gun on a LCD/LED TV, it will work as the Rifle Gun needs only a light source (like a light bulb, a brigh LED, even a candle!) to work. Don't beleive me then try it! :P

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November 10, 2016: I finally got a chance to play Submarine. The sound is a nice addition. The scoreboard is great! When I consider the games I think If you were snowbound in a cabin with your family with nothing but an Odyssey set and a television (that didn't get any other signal), which games would you most likely play? Submarine is actually playable, and good in that you don't need a PHd, as you do in Football and Baseball. The big limitation, I think, is deciding when the ships actually leave the blue line (and are lost to "mines") particularly at the mess of spagetti at the 4 O'clock position. I think if they had made the ship course humanly possible to follow (as they did with Skiing), it would have made the game markedly better. (I wonder if back in the day, anyone tried playing it with the skiing overlay).

I really appreciate having the option for "true simulation" (with and without the overlay) and the "aftermarket upgrades" (particularly the scoreboards, which a are completely necessary to make the games actually playable).

Looking forwards to trying Hockey soon. I will try to see If I can program my USB joystick to to Work with OdySim which may make the gameplay better.

Thanks again for the privilege of Submarine Sly, I will probably boot it up again soon!

My reply: Great that you like Submarine with sound and all. Any "aftermarket upgrades" as you call them is only to make the game(s) more funand they are optional as you need to push a certain button to activate them. Let's say a museum or a video game conference wants to show a (or a few) game(s) with the help of OdySim, as you start a game it is ready to play as it would be on a real Odyssey (with the exception of the self-centering English), and the rest are "options" and "upgrade/bonus options" and is at the discretion of the handler.

In Santa's Gifts Hunt, there is a "bonus option" that a real Odyssey can't do as i wanted to make the game more "seasoned". If you haven't read the manual, try "1" to activate (and also to switch it off) this bonus option. :)

BTW, if you are succesful to use an USB joystick, could you tell me how to do it so that anyone reading this blog could use an USB controller ? That would be great! =)

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November 13, 2016: I just finished playing Hockey. Another fine addition to the Ody-Sim line up! It is great to see on the monitor! If I could make two suggestions, though: First, it's a bit difficult to calibrate the AI level with the 9 and 0 buttons(which I like to do as I'm always trying to "take my game to the next level" (sorry for that long worn-out cliche). The second suggestion would be to not allow a score against the AI unless the ball goes through the goal. If that happened, it would make it distinctly difficult game than tennis (and I suspect that back in the day, people likely gave up on the face-off and icing/off-sides rules, and just started playing tennis with the hockey overlay on.) Conversely, however, I would allow the AI to score against the human player if the puck/ball passes anywhere over the human's right vertical side of the screen (that is, i'd keep things the same as is now for the AI player. (If you required the puck to go through the human's goal, it'd be pretty impossible for the AI to ever score). Anyway, thanks again, and I would ask that you not feel rushed to get all games completed by the end of the year. Please rather pace yourself and take time for your self and family. Even the Christmas Game can wait until after New Year's so you can spend time with your family (By the way that looks totally cool, and when you do release it I wounder if you'd consider adding the "first sketch--Santa on the Skiiing hill--as an option."
Take care my friend--this is such a great project!

My reply: Again, it's always a pleasure reading your comments Brian and please do continue to send comments (good or bad). Suggestiuon #1: it is true that trying to calibrate the AI and also the Ball Speed is not easy as the numbers changes way fast. I'll try to reduce the setting speed by half at first to see if it's easier to calibrate. That's a great suggestion!

As for the second suggestion, that would be a great option to add to the game as it is too easy to score. And that was true that people back in the days would play the Tennis game with the Hockey overlay as both uses the same cartridge. I'll check that out eventually.

And the third one (without knowing it...lol!) for including the Santa-Skiing overlay (the first draft) as a bonus or as a 2-in-1 game ... i haven't thought of that at all! Another great suggestion Brian!

So in review, suggestion #1 is on the "DO" list as it will be easier to calibrate Ai & Ball Speed and also suggestion #3 as a bonus game to Santa's Gifts Hunt. For suggestion #2, i will have to make a sub-code as an option and that will take some time so it's in the "To Try Later" (TTL..ha!).

So continue to send comments/suggestions/rotten tomatos/Playboy mags (hahahahah!)/etc... as
i always appreciate them my friend. Even thought of being an Odyssey game designer ? ;)

Take care and keep those comments rolling! =)


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