Volunteers wanted!

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

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aerworuld
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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby aerworuld » Fri Mar 07, 2014 4:34 pm

leenew wrote:Stuart,
When you get a minute, would you mind briefly outlining the process you took in writing this game.
e.g. did you think of the plot and write the story/characters etc. then draw the map etc.
Did you know about space limitations before you started?
The reason I ask?
I may try to recreate an old game I wrote when I was a teenager, but I don't want to get half way through only to be told NO ROOM etc.

Have you any rough guidelines :D

Lee.


excellent question my friend!

i did start off with a basic idea in my mind and from this i made a list of characters who i wanted to include, with a bit of fleshing out for each. i drew a basic map of the town which incorporated my initial ideas, after i had done this is made a few notes about some of the puzzles.

it wasnt really until i started populating the Quill database that things really took shape though; i added to the map as i went along and i brought in a few more of the characters and puzzles. i sort of did some things the hard way and back to front but this was my first time using the Quill and i had to learn as i went along.

my descriptions are quite rich for the locations and this really eats into the database memory; if you keep checking available space as you work you will quickly get an idea of how big your game can be/how descriptive you can be with locations and objects. on my next adventure (i will write a sequel to TCCOTMV one day) i am planning to span the adventure across at least two databases, though i have not looked deeply into how this is done, i know it can be.

i had to sacrifice some locations and also some commands such as HELP to get everything to fit. Although the end result is a reasonably short adventure i hope people enjoy the atmosphere created by the longer descriptions ;) i would say populate the database with all of your locations, then pad out as many as you can.

good luck with your project - it's real buzz playing through the finished adventure this way!

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lurkio
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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby lurkio » Fri Mar 07, 2014 5:54 pm

Hi, Stuart. Thanks for the reply. I think I didn't quite explain some of my comments properly. I wasn't trying to be nitpicking -- well, not much ;-) -- so I just wanted to clarify what I meant, below, in relation to some of the comments you responded to.
aerworuld wrote:Q) issue with "'R' or REDESCRIBE instead of the more usual L and/or LOOK."
A) not sure about this one my friend; the LOOK command works fine in the game and i'm happy with that one. trying to keep database usage at optimum.
Sorry! My bad! I didn't realise you could actually type LOOK! Doh! I tried L, and when that didn't work, I must have assumed that LOOK didn't work either.

But just to clarify, I wasn't suggesting you should add a new LOOK -- or L -- command to the game. All I meant was that in the Intro program, which loads before the main game, it might be helpful to the player if an instruction was displayed on screen that mentioned that the player has to type R for REDESCRIBE, because that command is peculiar to The Quill, and I'm guessing that not everyone will know about it.

But that was a minor point -- like all my points, really -- so it's not worth bothering with, especially as it's now moot anyway, because it turns out that LOOK works fine! #-o
aerworuld wrote:Q) Confusion with the Badgers Sett and the use of the word SETT instead of HOLES
A) A badger Sett contains many holes as it is a badgers home! The description is there to set the scene as the protagonist almost breaks his ankle stumbling in them ;)

Q) Replace COT with BED in the Prison cell.
A) I understand that cot is an Americanisation of bed these days, but i have found references to the use of this word in an English Victorian context. It's a bit like the references to Vat-men in the game; these have nothing to do with taxes, they are the fellows in those days that controlled the vats that start the processing of old rags to paper.
Cool. But to clarify, I wasn't suggesting that HOLES should be used instead of SETT or that BED should be used instead of COT. I just meant that it might be nice if the player had the option to say COT or bed, as he or she pleases. That is, add BED as a synonym for COT. But, again, this is a really minor point, and I understand that the DB is maxed out and that your choice of words adds to the atmosphere of the game.
aerworuld wrote:hope these clarify; thanks again for the feedback!
Absolutely, and you're welcome! And I hope I've managed to convey that I wasn't trying to be a git and demanding that you make complex and memory-consuming changes all over the place in your game!

I'll shut up now ;-)

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lurkio
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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby lurkio » Fri Mar 07, 2014 8:15 pm

leenew wrote:I may try to recreate an old game I wrote when I was a teenager
Lee, I think that's a capital idea!
leenew wrote:but I don't want to get half way through only to be told NO ROOM
The chances of that happening have been reduced by the discovery of the disc version of the Quill -- if that's what you were thinking of using -- because it allocates more room for the database than the tape version. (And, in fact, the Beeb Quill allocates more DB room than the Electron Quill does, probably because the former uses Mode 7?)

Ooh, wait, can I be all clever and paste in the memory map from the Quill manual to illustrate my point? Let's give it a go...

Code: Select all

Appendix B: The Quill Memory Map
     __________________________________________________   &8000
    |                                                  |
    |   SCREEN MEMORY                                  |
    |_______ _______ ________ ______ ____ __________ __|  &7C00
    |                                                  |  Top of database
    |                                                  |  for BBC
    |                                                  |
    |__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __|  &6000
    |                                                  |  Top of database
    |                                                  |  for Electron
    |                                                  |
    |   DATABASE                                       |
    |                                                  |
    |_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ |  &3500
    |                                                  |  Bottom of database
    |                                                  |  for tape version
    |                                                  |
    |                                                  |  &2500
    |______ _____ ___________ ___ ___________ _____ ___|  Bottom of database
    |                                                  |  for disc version
    |   QUILL INTERPRETER                              |
    |__________________________________________________|
    |                                                  |
    |   QUILL EDITOR                                   |
    |__________________________________________________|
    |                                                  |
    |   FREE MEMORY FOR USER ROUTINES                  |  &B00 - &CFF
    |__________________________________________________|
    |                                                  |
    |   FLAGS                                          |  &500 - &540
    |                                                  |
    |   OBJECT LOCATIONS                               |  &400 - &4FF
    |__________________________________________________|
    |                                                  |
    |   ZERO PAGE FREE MEMORY FOR USER ROUTINES        |  &70 - &8F
    |__________________________________________________|
    |                                                  |
    |   PRINT VECTOR                                   |  &21 - &22
    |__________________________________________________|

Well, well. It seems I can!

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aerworuld
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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby aerworuld » Mon Jun 30, 2014 9:40 pm

Arcadian wrote:First five people to complete this tape version of TCCOTMV and provide some useful feedback to Stuart will receive a much sought-after, limited edition, highly valuable (etc) cassette featuring the game!

Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! :D



Did we get the tape version out in the end?

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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby CMcDougall » Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:17 pm

Stu, not had any new images to make for a while.
maybe you have the FinalMaster.UEF that you could PM me (or linky to), then I can make it :wink:

here is what the cover will look like as per DaveM 13th Feb'14 :
FreewareADVENTURE_Electron BBCMicro_CuriousCaseOfTheMissingVictorian_Tape.png

cheers, Col.
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jonb
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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby jonb » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:56 am

I've got a problem with the uef.

All I get on CHAIN "" is a "Bad name" error. To be fair, it's also affecting the BeebEM "test.uef" file so I don't think it's a problem with "Victorians".

I'm using BeebEM v4.14 on Windows 7.

[Edit: Sorry, my bad, I forgot *TAPE.. Loading now...]

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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby aerworuld » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:04 am

jonb wrote:I've got a problem with the uef.

All I get on CHAIN "" is a "Bad name" error. To be fair, it's also affecting the BeebEM "test.uef" file so I don't think it's a problem with "Victorians".

I'm using BeebEM v4.14 on Windows 7.

[Edit: Sorry, my bad, I forgot *TAPE.. Loading now...]


Phew, had mw worried there lol. I have a close to final version thats had a few layout and cosmetic changes since the play test betas posted in this thread; its just awaiting the official loader.

Stuart :)

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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby jonb » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:22 am

In the cells: "varies reprobates" -> "various reprobates".

Returning from the cell with the whistle to "the cells" repeats the description "The sergeant unlocks the door and leads you to the cells". This is wrong as he already did that once, and you have not at this point left the cells. So the tip is "never include an event in a room description". What you need to do (in The Quill) is show the event description when moving from the desk to the cells.

Description of the whistle: "Bobby's" -> "bobbies". Bobby is a noun, not a proper noun in this context, and it's bobbies (plural), not bobby's (possessive).

Description of waistcoat: "dark green waistcoat, with a cheques of" -> "dark green waistcoat with a dark grey check pattern" or "waistcoat made of a dark green and grey check material" or "dark green and grey check waistcoat".

I can't get any further. I went out onto Market Street, blew the whisle and got collared by the fuzz...

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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby aerworuld » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:27 am

jonb wrote:In the cells: "varies reprobates" -> "various reprobates".

Returning from the cell with the whistle to "the cells" repeats the description "The sergeant unlocks the door and leads you to the cells". This is wrong as he already did that once, and you have not at this point left the cells. So the tip is "never include an event in a room description". What you need to do (in The Quill) is show the event description when moving from the desk to the cells.

Description of the whistle: "Bobby's" -> "bobbys". Bobby is a noun, not a proper noun in this context, and it's bobbys (plural), not bobby's (possessive).

Description of waistcoat: "dark green waistcoat, with a cheques of" -> "dark green waistcoat with a dark grey check pattern" or "waistcoat made of a dark green and grey check material" or "dark green and grey check waistcoat".

I can't get any further. I went out onto Market Street, blew the whisle and got collared by the fuzz...


Hey Jon are you sure you're working from the later version in the thread? pretty sure those things have already been corrected.

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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby CMcDougall » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:54 am

Stu, ta for PM :)
I can also make the scr loader intro/official loader, as I've got them too 8) as had to change the Red background for beeb to Green for elk versions.

If one version works on both machines, bet you want it Green :wink:
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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby jonb » Thu Jul 24, 2014 11:42 am

aerworuld wrote:Hey Jon are you sure you're working from the later version in the thread? pretty sure those things have already been corrected.


Pretty sure... let me see!

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Re: Volunteers wanted!

Postby aerworuld » Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:49 pm

I was going through some of my 3.5's today and I came across this that I knocked up in AMX Art... thought I would share it for posterity to remind folks that the cassette version is still on the way ;-)

tccotmv_ad.jpg
TCCOTMV ad, (AMX Art style)