Abbuc SW Contest 2013 Challenge

I have been working on game for Abbuc SW contest 2013 for a quite while, but due to my day job (yes, I do not make living out of Atari development) I was unable to finish such technically complex game on time. Development has been also paused for 2 weeks because I left for vacation and came back just few days before Abbuc SW Contest deadline. So I decided to challenge myself…

I started working on new game on 31.8.2013 sometime around 7:00 AM. I usually suffer from ADD (Abbuc Deadline Day) and this year was not an exception.

I already had idea of game, but I had no assets (no music, no gfx, no fonts, nothing)… just the idea.  From this point I needed 16 hours (till Abbuc deadline) to make game from scratch…

…and Xirius defect is the result of my work:

Xirius defect (1)Xirius defect (2)Xirius defect (3)

As you can see, it is not very special unique game, but it is quite a win for me.

Rules of game are quite similar to “Light Up!” that I coded and sent to Abbuc SW Contest in 2006. This game is however really coded from scratch. No parts of existing code were used, except of RMT music replay routine. Game was entirely written and designed on 31.8.2013.

Your task is break formula of deadly chemical weapon. You have to place emitting elements from area above level to compound below. All empty elements (empty circles) have to be excited in order to win level. Emitting elements excite all empty elements that are in direction of blue emitting arrows. There are also two special elements with specific behavior:
1. cyanide element – stops propagation of excitation, it is kind of “blocker”
2. repulsificator element – stops propagation of excitation and repulses direct excitation to source. Simply, you cannot excite empty elements which are between emitting element and repulsificator element. You have to do it other way – using other emitting element.

It sounds complicated, but it is pretty easy.

Source has almost 1700 lines of MADS code. Game consists of 2 fonts for logo (g2f export), 1 ingame font (numbers, letters and ingame elements) and 1 font with element animations.

Ingame font and element animation font were created using my Atari FontMaker 1.3.

Music was downloaded from modarchive in mod format, imported to RMT, instruments were assigned and I also have to make some other minor modifications to it.

Firstly I was working on game playfield, so I was switching between coding and element design. After I was able to display current level, I started working on controls. Emitting elements are static gfx, but after you click on one of them, they are switched to PMG. This was functional till noon. Around 1PM game slowly started to be playable. I was working on controls and response to click (fire) for about 2 hours and next step was title logo. I prepared it in gfx editor, exported to 4-color PNG, loaded into g2f and exported fonts and screen data. Near 3PM was my logo implemented in code. I wrote logo DLIs by myslef, so I did not used exported ones. Adding logo to game shifted whole gameplay area several lines below so I had to adapt these changes. I was also getting some terrible crashes due to this, but I fixed them eventually.

Then I was working on gameplay and controls for several hours.

Music was added around 8PM and after that I started adding levels. I was using playfield of size 7×6 so far, but I found that it was not enough so I had to resize it to 11×6. This also required many changes in code and focus to make everything working again.

Element animations were added around 11PM. Last thing that I was working on before game was sent to Sascha Kriegel (Abbuc SW Contest representative) was final screen together with title and help screens.

It was quite a marathon, I hope you like this game even if it is not that cool as my other previous productions.

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Xirius Defect v1.1

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2 thoughts on “Abbuc SW Contest 2013 Challenge

  1. Jo, tak to byl sprint, gratuluju, ze se Ti to podarilo dokoncit. Hraje se to dobre a vypada to i vcelku k svetu, s ohledem na dobu kompletace 🙂

  2. Mato, z teba sa stava celkom slusny koder, fakt pecka vidiet vymakat sa cloveka v asm pre atari v 21. storoci 🙂 Len tak dalej!

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