The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

development and releases of new/rewritten text adventures
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ash73
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by ash73 »

Sounds like you're making good progress!

You could have a word with pixelblip, see if he's interested in making some Mode 7 art for the game... there are loads of iconic Blake's 7 images on the web.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by ash73 »

Blake's 7 route planner... it even copes with those asymmetrical exits :)
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

It's great to see my map drawn on the BBC! I've just ran your demo in my assembly language adventure and I get the same number of moves as you from room 6 to room 20. At the moment though I can't see the route - I'll work on that this afternoon and see if it's identical or if it takes a different path (I think it'll go NE at room 25 instead of NW).
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by ash73 »

That was going from 20 to 6, if I run it the other way from 6 to 20 is does as you suggest. it's just the order it looks at the exits when they have the same score.

It was fun finding a way to deal with asymmetric exits (e.g. 9,31,40 and 9,10,11,12), if you work backwards from the target it uses exits not available on the way there, and if it searches from the start position it can't deduce a route; imagine if you start in a corridor the scores go up in both directions so it doesn't know which way to go.

I solved it by creating a lookup table with the entry points into each room, i.e. rooms anywhere on the map that can navigate INTO the room you are in. Then it can work backwards from the target and check them relatively quickly.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by ash73 »

Update with the map loaded as a bitmap just to speed things up, no change to the route planner... main file is now B7ROUTE.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

ash73 wrote:
It was fun finding a way to deal with asymmetric exits (e.g. 9,31,40 and 9,10,11,12), if you work backwards from the target it uses exits not available on the way there, and if it searches from the start position it can't deduce a route; imagine if you start in a corridor the scores go up in both directions so it doesn't know which way to go.
I solved it by creating a lookup table with the entry points into each room, i.e. rooms anywhere on the map that can navigate INTO the room you are in. Then it can work backwards from the target and check them relatively quickly.
I'd actually forgotten that my map had asymmetric exits, 9,31,40 was actually a mistake which I'll correct. I checked my find routine for 9,10,11,12 and it does indeed produce an error if you're at 9 and you try to map to 10. This is because my program calculates 10 as 1 step away but when it tries to go from 10 back to 9 (thinking it can) it fails. Your idea of using the entry points INTO a room rather than FROM a room was inspired - I'll do some reprogramming today hopefully. To get it to work will slow my program down because it's not directly accessing the directions list from a room, it will have to go through all the rooms and work out which ones lead in to that location. I could use a data table but I reckon it'll take between 1k and 2k to include every room so I'll just have to suffer the loss in speed.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

I've now updated my adventure with the FIND command which takes into account asymmetric exits. To speed things up I've created a new lookup table pointing to the location directions (previously the location lookup pointed to the text and the directions followed straight after, so the FIND routine had to wade through the text before picking up the directions) and the command itself will now show the route to the object from your location. Here's a screenshot:
B7 FIND example.jpg
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

I'm now toying with the idea of using in-game graphics using the excellent Teletext Paint Program developed by FourthStone and Pixelblip:
fed trooper.jpg
Obviously hoping that I'll improve with practice...
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

This is the best logo I can muster (teletext graphics are a tad tricky when you want to change line colours...)
B7LOGO.jpg
Btw, the bottom half of the screen is for the adventure text although I may attempt a full screen logo for the loading screen.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

I've now got a teletext graphics compressor routine working and also the reverse decompression routine written in assembly language for the adventure itself. Each location has a lookup to the graphics data although, given the inevitable memory limitations, some locations eg the corridors will share graphics files, as also probably will the door entrance locations. Here's the loading page. I've only done the graphic for one other location so far - the Liberator handgun rack. I'm quite enjoying dabbling in a bit of graphics design for a change!
b7 opening screen.jpg
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by ash73 »

You're making good progress!

I had a go at digitising some Blake's 7 stills with image2mode7, you can just about recognise them. Might save you a bit of time doing it that way.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by FourthStone »

This is looking good!

I'm pretty sure you can import files created by image2mode7 into Telepaint for further editing, let me know if there's any issues with that and I can make changes to the code to accommodate :)
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by fuzzel »

ash73 wrote:
I had a go at digitising some Blake's 7 stills with image2mode7, you can just about recognise them. Might save you a bit of time doing it that way.
They're brilliant! He's a smart guy that kieranhj. I've just read through the image2mode7 thread on this forum and it's a very clever piece of programming (I'm totally lost when it comes to the technical details). My only issue would be the fact that the files are 1k in size and given the level of detail wouldn't compress down to much less than this. My own files take up 0.5k being the top half of the screen and compress down by 50% again so I reckon with 16 images I'll only need about 4k which is doable (I think).
It would be interesting though to create an animation of, say, the Blake's 7 credits, I may have a look at this, it would be a brilliant loader for my adventure. Is there a bit of software that could grab the theme tune as well?
FourthStone wrote:
I'm pretty sure you can import files created by image2mode7 into Telepaint for further editing, let me know if there's any issues with that and I can make changes to the code to accommodate
Your program is great and I'll play about with an image2mode7 data file if ash73 could post one as an importable file into an emulator please.

One question I have regarding Telepaint is: I like the grid you get when clicking in the top left hand corner - it allows me to see whether a horizontal line I've created stays within a single row of cells or whether it straddles two rows. If the latter then when you change the foreground colour to change the line colour you have to change two rows. Is it possible to keep the grid on the screen if required? That would be a big help - it would ensure my line remains within one row.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by Pernod »

fuzzel wrote:
Fri Jan 22, 2021 12:27 pm
Is there a bit of software that could grab the theme tune as well?
There's a rendition on one of my discs at viewtopic.php?p=48398#p48398
- Nigel

BBC Model B: ATPL Sidewise, Acorn Speech, 2xWatford Floppy Drives, AMX Mouse, Viglen case, BeebZIF, etc.
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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by ash73 »

fuzzel wrote:
Fri Jan 22, 2021 12:27 pm
I've just read through the image2mode7 thread on this forum and it's a very clever piece of programming (I'm totally lost when it comes to the technical details). My only issue would be the fact that the files are 1k in size and given the level of detail wouldn't compress down to much less than this. My own files take up 0.5k being the top half of the screen and compress down by 50% again so I reckon with 16 images I'll only need about 4k which is doable (I think).
You would normally prepare a 80x76 image to process in image2mode7, but if you feed it say a 80x38 image it creates a 520 byte file. I agree though they won't compress as well, and the smaller they get the harder it is to scan a decent looking image.

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Re: The adventures of Stannis, Roj, Kerr, Olag and Restal

Post by FourthStone »

fuzzel wrote:
Fri Jan 22, 2021 12:27 pm
FourthStone wrote:
I'm pretty sure you can import files created by image2mode7 into Telepaint for further editing, let me know if there's any issues with that and I can make changes to the code to accommodate
Your program is great and I'll play about with an image2mode7 data file if ash73 could post one as an importable file into an emulator please.

One question I have regarding Telepaint is: I like the grid you get when clicking in the top left hand corner - it allows me to see whether a horizontal line I've created stays within a single row of cells or whether it straddles two rows. If the latter then when you change the foreground colour to change the line colour you have to change two rows. Is it possible to keep the grid on the screen if required? That would be a big help - it would ensure my line remains within one row.
Short answer is not at this time, this is due to the main drawing interface being programmed to function in Mode 7. The grid view takes a screenshot of the current Mode 7 screen and then changes to a different Mode to overlay the grid and control chars. I have been tinkering with switching between Mode 7 and the grid view but it is a little jarring / laggy, possibly something I can refine in the future as a custom mode that emulates Mode 7.
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