Repton levels?

reminisce about bbc micro & electron games like chuckie egg, repton, elite & exile

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The Kraken
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Tue Mar 17, 2009 1:48 pm

AJW wrote:Either myself or somebody else here certainly could. But you need to specify:

1. What emulator
2. What images

Let's see... I'm using BeebEm, and I'm still new to the whole emulation business, so I don't really know what an image is :?

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Tue Mar 17, 2009 3:03 pm

Hopefully a Beebem user will kindly give you the details for that emulator but an image is just the contents of a disk or tape in a single file. You generally just drop the file into a field of a desktop window which is a substitute for the physical drive itself and then enter the emulator followed by shift-break/CHAIN""/etc.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Tue Mar 17, 2009 4:05 pm

Assuming BeebEm for Windows, here's the step-by-step guide:

01) Download the latest version of BeebEm for Windows:

http://www.mikebuk.dsl.pipex.com/beebem/

02) Run .exe installer to install BeebEm

03) Download Repton 3 and Repton Infinity for the BBC Micro from this site:

http://www.stairwaytohell.com/bbc/archi ... epton3.zip
http://www.stairwaytohell.com/bbc/archi ... finity.zip

04) To extract the .ssd disc images from their .zip archive files, use 7-Zip. (Do this by installing 7-Zip and then right-clicking on the .zip files, and selecting 7-Zip/Extract Here.)

05) Copy the Repton program .ssd disc image files to your 'My Documents\BeebEm\DiscIms' folder.

06) Go to AJW's webpage and download the disc image files containing the BBC Micro Repton 3 or Repton Infinity levels you're interested in:

http://aw.drobe.co.uk/REPTON/

07) If any of them are contained in .zip archive files, use 7-Zip to extract the .ssd disc image files.

08) Copy all the .ssd disc image files to your 'My Documents\BeebEm\DiscIms' folder.

09) Run BeebEm and select "Load Disc 0" from the File menu.

You should see the list of .ssd images you copied earlier by default. If the levels you are trying to load are for Repton 3, select the Repton 3 program disc image to load into drive 0.

10) Select "Load Disc 1" from the File menu. Select the disc containing the Repton 3 custom levels to load as disc 1. Type *CAT 1 to see the contents of the disc - make a note of the screens you want to load, e.g. $.SCRNAME.

11) Do a Shift+F12 to perform a Shift-Break in BeebEm. This should boot the disc and run Repton 3.

12) Select L from the main menu to load the custom data file. When asked enter the filename in the form: :1.$.SCRNAME, where 1 is the drive, $ is the directory and SCRNAME is the filename.

The process is similar for Repton Infinity, but there are different things which can be loaded, including new graphics, levels etc. General procedure is the same - boot the Repton Infinity disc, then load the new data files. In the Film Strip, move to "Load" with the cursor arrows and press RETURN, then move the cursor down to "Both" and enter the filename of what you're trying to load and press RETURN. You might need to fiddle around, if there isn't a complete set of new data files.

You'll need to follow the same general procedure with ElectrEm, if you want to get the full Electron custom levels experience - download ElectrEm, the Electron versions of Repton 3 or Repton Infinity and the custom levels from AJW's site. The .uef and .csw files you're more likely to come across here are images of the cassettes which the Electron more commonly used. ElectrEm can handle those - check the documentation for specific instructions.

HTH,

Sam.

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The Kraken
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Tue Mar 17, 2009 4:51 pm

Thanks! Everything's working now.

I'll just add that some of these levels have misplaced spirits and need to be played in Around the World, Life of Repton or Repton Thru Time rather than Repton 3 -- for example, some of Michael Foot's levels.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Tue Mar 17, 2009 4:57 pm

Excellent. Can you feed back the specifics to AJW either through this forum or by mail/PM, so that he can make it clear on his web page, what engine each set of levels should be loaded with?

Sam.

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The Kraken
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Tue Mar 17, 2009 5:36 pm

Sure, when I've had time to go through the lot.

For now, here's a summary of the issue. On Repton 3, spirits are set to move south at the start of the level; in consequence, a spirit starting with space or earth to its south, east and southeast will be dazed. This is what prevents many of the AtW/Life/Time levels being playable if loaded in the Repton 3 game engine.

AtW/Life/Time themselves all have an updated game engine in which spirits' initial movement preference is more intelligently decided by its environment, so it is impossible for a spirit to start off dazed unless it's completely surrounded by empty space. This should mean all levels completable in the Repton 3 game engine are also completable if loaded with AtW/Life/Time. The only exception is that spirits with space on both sides and objects above and below will start off heading the wrong way, which may on some levels cause them to go into the wrong cage and render the level uncompletable; however, this would be extremely rare. The only level on which this is known to have a noticeable effect is Finale Screen E, which if played on the AtW/Life/Time game engine one spirit in the top-left goes in a cage immediately -- but of course the level is still completable.

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The Kraken
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Tue Mar 17, 2009 11:19 pm

OK, findings so far.

All five of Michael Foot's sets have at least one screen where a spirit is positioned so that it will start off dazed if played on the Repton 3 game engine. All of these files must be played in either Around the World, Life of Repton or Repton Thru Time.

In addition, JULIE2 Screen B can only be completed losing a life, since there are two diamonds entirely enclosed by skulls. Screen H is not completable as there is no crown.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Wed Mar 18, 2009 3:20 pm

These are questions for Michael Foot really. it seems sensible to load on the most recent engine but there's so many levels who knows which is the best version to load them on?

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Wed Mar 18, 2009 4:10 pm

Umm ... what questions? Even if he's a bit rusty with emulators, AJW, The Kraken (aka Michael S. Repton) is no stranger to Repton, I can assure you. Check out the walkthroughs he's contributed to the Game Help section of this site!

Given he's telling you which game engines the levels should be played with, I think you can take them as given ... at least enough to post that suggestion next to the downloads on your site. I think it might be appropriate to group the levels according to the game engine, myself, but there you go ...

Sam.

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The Kraken
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Wed Mar 18, 2009 6:28 pm

AJW wrote:These are questions for Michael Foot really.

Not really (and in any case I intend to look at all the levels on your page, not just Michael Foot's sets). A level being uncompletable is a pretty serious omission, so it seems likely to me that if you asked Michael Foot "are any of your levels uncompletable?" he wouldn't know that one of them was (otherwise he would have fixed it). As for asking him "which version of the Repton 3 game engine should your levels be played on?", I'm pretty sure most people don't realise that the AtW/Life/Time game engine is slightly different from the original Repton 3 one.

it seems sensible to load on the most recent engine but there's so many levels who knows which is the best version to load them on?

I do. :) Or at least, after looking at them in the editor it's easy to tell when you know what to look for.

I can now report that, of the sets in the next bunch, AGONY requires playing on the original Repton 3 game engine. The next set, BIRTHDA, is edit-code protected, so I can't do anything until I've played through the set to find out the codes. I am going to find this information out for all the sets, though. It will just take a bit of time :)

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Wed Mar 18, 2009 9:14 pm

The Kraken wrote:
AJW wrote:These are questions for Michael Foot really.

As for asking him "which version of the Repton 3 game engine should your levels be played on?", I'm pretty sure most people don't realise that the AtW/Life/Time game engine is slightly different from the original Repton 3 one.

He might be able to say which version he created the levels with.

it seems sensible to load on the most recent engine but there's so many levels who knows which is the best version to load them on?

I do. :) Or at least, after looking at them in the editor it's easy to tell when you know what to look for.

I can now report that, of the sets in the next bunch, AGONY requires playing on the original Repton 3 game engine. The next set, BIRTHDA, is edit-code protected, so I can't do anything until I've played through the set to find out the codes.

Are you saying this is a spirit problem for both sets?

I am going to find this information out for all the sets, though. It will just take a bit of time :)


I'll make a note of what you test and add it to the site in due course. in the meantime it's problem as important to note that the Repton 3 versions differ as you point out.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby billcarr2005 » Wed Mar 18, 2009 11:37 pm

The Kraken wrote:The next set, BIRTHDA, is edit-code protected, so I can't do anything until I've played through the set to find out the codes. I am going to find this information out for all the sets, though. It will just take a bit of time :)


Think this probably came from a Cheat It Again Joe. It might not work on user made levels, but if it does it'll be quicker than playing through them!
Just SHIFT-BREAK and type the filename of the levels file to display passwords/edit codes.
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Footie » Sat Mar 21, 2009 11:28 pm

AJW wrote:
The Kraken wrote:
AJW wrote:These are questions for Michael Foot really.

As for asking him "which version of the Repton 3 game engine should your levels be played on?", I'm pretty sure most people don't realise that the AtW/Life/Time game engine is slightly different from the original Repton 3 one.

He might be able to say which version he created the levels with.


Well, the levels were created a long time ago. Originally they were created with the original Repton 3 on a Model B. I created MSCREEN and I think also MACHO. The others were created by my brother and sister and may not be completable since they were just experienting with the designer. I've not played them since they were made so can't remember.

All the levels in MSCREEN should be completable. Please let me know which levels have the spirit problem or are not completable and I will look at it. I have played the first 3 screens recently and they were completable without losing a life.

Maybe BeebEm or youir copy is Repton 3 is buggy?

Cheers,

Mike.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:14 pm

I think he's right about screens B and H. B is attached and H just says when all is completed to "defuse timebomb" but you can't do it.

It's no problem as I can make a note of it on the site.

I'm not sure which levels he says have the spirit problem. If they were created on original Repton 3 and are not completable then I'd rather leave them as they are, make a note and let the user edit them.
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Footie » Sun Mar 22, 2009 9:16 pm

AJW wrote:I think he's right about screens B and H. B is attached and H just says when all is completed to "defuse timebomb" but you can't do it.

It's no problem as I can make a note of it on the site.

I'm not sure which levels he says have the spirit problem. If they were created on original Repton 3 and are not completable then I'd rather leave them as they are, make a note and let the user edit them.


I could fix screens B and H in JULIE, but since I did not design them originally (my sister did), I'd rather leave them alone. As I said, only MSCREEN and MACHO haven been done with completion in mind. The others are just experimental screens and may not be completable.

If any screens in MSCREEN or MACHO are faulty, let me know.

Cheers,

Mike.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Mon Mar 23, 2009 6:47 pm

Footie wrote:All the levels in MSCREEN should be completable. Please let me know which levels have the spirit problem or are not completable and I will look at it.

MSCREEN Screen H
MACHO Screens B, E, H (though on B it's possible to release the dazed spirits with fungus)
STEVEN Screens A, B, C, E, F (D also has a dazed spirit but it can be released)
JULIE Screens B, C, G, H (D also has dazed spirits but they can be released)
JULIE2 Screens A, E

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Mon Mar 23, 2009 7:45 pm

OK, but we know these work with the updated Repton engines. I don't think any need fixing, do they? It just needs to be listed which engine is required to play them back, yes?

Sam.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Mon Mar 23, 2009 8:03 pm

For some reason The Kraken has missed out Julie2 screens B and H.

Samwise - take a look at the top left of the map above and you can see it can't be completed.

Ideally, it'd be good to know which can't be completed just as much.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Tue Mar 24, 2009 12:22 am

Well, the above was specifically a list of which levels had the spirit problem.

Screen B can in fact be completed, taking advantage of what is probably a glitch in the programming. If you press "M" for map at the same time as you walk into a skull, then when you resume play after losing a life the skull will have disappeared. (Thanks to Jonathan Parkin for drawing my attention to this glitch!)

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Footie » Tue Mar 24, 2009 3:23 am

The Kraken wrote:Well, the above was specifically a list of which levels had the spirit problem.

Screen B can in fact be completed, taking advantage of what is probably a glitch in the programming. If you press "M" for map at the same time as you walk into a skull, then when you resume play after losing a life the skull will have disappeared. (Thanks to Jonathan Parkin for drawing my attention to this glitch!)


You are right about the spirit problems when using the original Repton 3. I don't remember this being a problem when I made the screens originally. I will try all this on my real Model B soon and see if that has the asme problem. Unfortunately the Repton 3 disc I used to design the screens is not readable anymore. Do you know why the spirits have problems? The levels look fine in the editor.

You are also right about screen B in JULIE2 being uncompleable. I don't know anything about this and I doubt my sister would either. I suppose I could remove a skull and redistribute it...

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The Kraken
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Tue Mar 24, 2009 10:50 am

Footie wrote:You are right about the spirit problems when using the original Repton 3. I don't remember this being a problem when I made the screens originally. I will try all this on my real Model B soon and see if that has the asme problem. Unfortunately the Repton 3 disc I used to design the screens is not readable anymore. Do you know why the spirits have problems? The levels look fine in the editor.

Yes -- as I explained further up the page, on the original Repton 3 you shouldn't put a spirit against the left wall of an open area, or against the top wall, or in the top-left corner. That's because spirits are initialised to try moving south at the start of the level, so a spirit in any of those positions won't "take hold" of the wall but will instead drift away from it and float in a small circle (since spirits always turn left if they can, and once it enters the circle it can always turn left).

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby The Kraken » Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:58 pm

OK, update time.

To help keep track of the large number of levels, I've started to compile my notes on them on a separate webpage, here. For each set I've listed which game engine it should be played with (where known), whether the graphics are changed, and any other notes (including pointing out impossible screens). I've also categorised some sets as having "medium", "high" or "very high quality of level design" to help anyone looking through these and deciding which ones to play! The "high" and "very high" sets do tend to also be the more difficult ones, however.

Some of the sets are edit code protected so my information on them is not yet complete, but when I have time I'll finish playing through them and then move onto the next batch of levels -- so far I've just got notes on Michael Foot's levels and the 8-bit Software sets.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby paulj » Tue Apr 14, 2009 2:12 pm

Hi,

I found a disk labelled 'Repton Levels' in the items samwise kindly let me have, image attached. Not sure if you already have this data, I have not tried the levels out.

Best Regards,
Paul
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AJW
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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Tue Apr 14, 2009 6:40 pm

Not sure how it's found its way to you Paul but that looks like the Martin Bazley levels for Repton 3 take 2.

I also see the Kraken has progressed quiite a way through the game-engine cataloguing of the existing files so it should be worth updating again.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:00 pm

Ah, yes. It's possible if Martin didn't ask for the disc back that it ended up in the collection I passed on.

Thanks for imaging it, though - it might have come from one of the disk pack I collected over the years.

Sam.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Sun Apr 26, 2009 3:38 pm

AJW,

Have you seen the Repton Infinity levels here?

Wotsit Thingy by Andrew Clover and 19 Repton Infinity games by Darren Salt
http://web.archive.org/web/199904290528 ... /softw.htm

Sam.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:27 pm

No I don't think I've seen those thanks. Unfortunately, the links no longer work.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby Samwise » Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:36 pm

wotsit.zip and rep19.zip download fine for me ...

Sam.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Tue Apr 28, 2009 7:03 pm

It's a javascript problem apparently. I've got them now so will try them out! It seems like one was written in 1995 although I'm not sure about the other one. The site is Alex Card's presumably.

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Re: Repton levels?

Postby AJW » Mon May 11, 2009 11:11 pm

Ok, the note about Michael S.Repton's guide is up and an outline for the extra Infinity levels. i'll add some screenshots and the files (which you can get from the link above for the meantime) hopefully very soon.
http://aw.drobe.co.uk/REPTON/


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