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Thread: ASCII WAR - A simple 2 player homebrew Genesis game

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    Comrade as in friend. Master of Shinobi ComradeOj's Avatar
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    Genesis ASCII WAR - A simple 2 player homebrew Genesis game

    A month or so ago I decided to start working on a simple 2 player combat game. Now it's pretty much finished. It could still use some polish though!
    I decided to just have fun with it, and get kind of creative. What's the point in making a Genesis game if you can't have fun while you're doing it?

    The plot:
    An evil warlord lives in a dimension where everything is made up of ASCII art. He sent out a scout, to look for new lands to conquer. A resistance group also sent out a scout of their own, and they meet in out dimension to fight. The ships don't shoot bullets, but strings of text. It's dumb, but I thought it was just goofy enough to work. The concept almost reminds me of the Mooninites from ATHF.

    About the game:
    The music is all from miscellaneous sources. It's all played back using my simple VGM driver. The background graphics are all various photos I had taken in the past, and the images of my desk and cat were taken specifically for the game. The digitized still image backgrounds look pretty ugly, so I might try experimenting with using 2 backgrounds layers, that way I can get twice the colors. The game was programmed in 68k assembly, and consists of about 2000 lines of code.

    I have not idea if this game is fun or not. I sure had fun making it though. I'm afraid that gameplay will just devolve into flying as fast as you can while spamming the fire button. It could easily be polished up, and re-skinned into a different game in the future though. I bet this game could be transformed into a fun 2 player top down naval combat game with torpedoes, mines, and map obstacles. As it is, it plays kind of like a 2 player VS. game of asteroids.

    If someone is able to get a friend to play this with them, I would love to know how it worked out. I wasn't able to find someone to play it with me, so I haven't really "played" this game. I'm open to critique.

    Controls:
    The D pad moves you around, and the 'A' button shoots. 'B' locks your movement vertically, and 'C' locks your movement horizontally. I'm hoping that the axis locking will add a little bit of depth to the combat.

    ROM Download link:
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-u...ew?usp=sharing
    Source code is included with the ROM download.
    Seasoned programmers will cringe when they open up those .ASMs, but I still like to include source code for everything I make, even if it shows a lot of improper coding that would otherwise be unknown to everyone.

    Gameplay video:
    I was playing both side by myself, so that's why there is so much aimless wandering around the screen and missed shots.




    Screenshots




    Title screen


    Info screen

    Gameplay

    Gameplay

    Ending 1

    Ending 2
    Modded consoles:
    Master System (v7040) with s-video & direct AV out
    Model 1 with 10mhz overclock & halt switches
    Model 1 with 10mhz 68010
    Model 2 VA2.3 with unfiltered Mega Amp, & s-video
    Model 3 VA1 with compatibility fixes & s-video
    32X with s-video
    Visit my web site at www.mode5.net
    Or my collection of homebrew Genesis games, programs, and music on SEGA-16!

  2. #2
    Nameless One Weevil's Avatar
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    Played it with a friend on EverDrive today. It was fun for a few minutes, and indeed the strategy 'fly around like crazy and shoot around like crazy' was happening! Not a very good strategy I might add... That's where timing your shot with the out-of-control passer-by comes in Also being able to hide off screen added a nice touch.

  3. #3
    Comrade as in friend. Master of Shinobi ComradeOj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weevil View Post
    Played it with a friend on EverDrive today. It was fun for a few minutes, and indeed the strategy 'fly around like crazy and shoot around like crazy' was happening! Not a very good strategy I might add... That's where timing your shot with the out-of-control passer-by comes in Also being able to hide off screen added a nice touch.
    Now this is a thread I didn't expect to surface again!

    ASCII WAR was my very first game. It's pretty rough, but at the time I thought it was awesome just having anything running on the Genesis.

    I only played it single player during development. It was only when I found someone to play it with me that I realized the gameplay just consisted of flying around spamming the fire button for 9 rounds. I guess both players could agree to stay in opposite sides and only strafe up and down. Kind of like pong, but with shooting.

    I think it would be better if the ships were smaller and slower. That way you aren't zooming across the playfield in a split second.

    Did you play the original release, or the updated one? I don't know about the link on this page, but the ROM download on my web site is the updated one. I added a deceleration factor to the ships, and fixed a bunch of bugs that it had when playing on real hardware.
    Modded consoles:
    Master System (v7040) with s-video & direct AV out
    Model 1 with 10mhz overclock & halt switches
    Model 1 with 10mhz 68010
    Model 2 VA2.3 with unfiltered Mega Amp, & s-video
    Model 3 VA1 with compatibility fixes & s-video
    32X with s-video
    Visit my web site at www.mode5.net
    Or my collection of homebrew Genesis games, programs, and music on SEGA-16!

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    Nameless One Weevil's Avatar
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    Played the one I got from your site. Not a game I'll likely play again soon, but thought I'd give it a go and report back Like you said, it was fun to make and have to say gameplay is pretty smooth. Other than that your pig game gave me a bit of fun. Are you working on games now? Any plans on cooperating with other programmers/writers/artists and make a bigger production some day?

    Also I was surprised to see this game... getting a physical release???
    https://8bitevolution.com/shop/games/ascii-wars/

  5. #5
    Comrade as in friend. Master of Shinobi ComradeOj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weevil View Post
    Played the one I got from your site. Not a game I'll likely play again soon, but thought I'd give it a go and report back Like you said, it was fun to make and have to say gameplay is pretty smooth. Other than that your pig game gave me a bit of fun. Are you working on games now? Any plans on cooperating with other programmers/writers/artists and make a bigger production some day?

    Also I was surprised to see this game... getting a physical release???
    https://8bitevolution.com/shop/games/ascii-wars/
    I was a little bit surprised too that they wanted to do a physical release. But, they asked me if I was okay with it, and I gave them permission.
    There is also another version that comes with a clear cartridge and a little thing of mints.

    I have been asked to work on other projects with teams, but haven't. I'm not that good of a programmer yet. Everything I make is very restricted by my own inexperience. I'm also not that good at working on a team.

    I have two games I'm working on.

    The first one is gravity pig, but with a built in level editor. It lets you build levels and save them to SRAM, then load them back up and play. I think it's kind of cool. Problem is, it will sometimes crash for seemingly no reason. Only on real hardware though. I haven't seen it crash in an emulator yet. The game is pretty much 100% finished, but I haven't released it due to this issue. I haven't given up on it completely though.



    The second one is basically a motherload clone. I'm not really sure how far along it is. I would guess it's about 75% done.
    I uploaded a video a few weeks ago. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3oiemN7JnNw It's made a lot more progress since.

    Modded consoles:
    Master System (v7040) with s-video & direct AV out
    Model 1 with 10mhz overclock & halt switches
    Model 1 with 10mhz 68010
    Model 2 VA2.3 with unfiltered Mega Amp, & s-video
    Model 3 VA1 with compatibility fixes & s-video
    32X with s-video
    Visit my web site at www.mode5.net
    Or my collection of homebrew Genesis games, programs, and music on SEGA-16!

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