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      /  New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
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Rebel-CD32 
New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 24-Jun-2008 4:46:10
#1 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 17-Apr-2004
Posts: 100
From: Australia

It's something a lot of people wanted forever, but never got. Sonic the Hedgehog, although promised by Sega to be released on Amiga, never happened. Whether it was because Sega thought it would threaten Mega Drive sales, or if they thought it couldn't be done on the A500, we'll probably never know. Over the years, we upgraded our Amigas and installed Master System emulators and played those fun, but sub-par Sonic games released for Sega's 8bit systems. We viewed fake demos, and saw complete ripoffs, but we never had a real Amiga version of Sonic.

We should change that! There are plenty of Sonic fangames available for Windows, some for X-Box 360, and even a Spectrum version! While the Amiga probably won't get an exact replica of the Mega Drive game, we can make our own original game in the same style as the Mega Drive games, using ripped and edited graphics and sounds.

As there's no platform game engine available to use, unless a coder wants to help out, we'll have to use Backbone or something similar. I've been playing around with Backbone, and through EXTENSIVE tweaking, have come up with what is as close as you can get to Sonic using Backbone (which is an old freeware platform game maker, made partially in Amos). I can't code, so this is as good as I can do for now. I've tried to get the speed, animation, inertia and controls to feel like the real thing, but of course Backbone wasn't designed for these types of games. For example, it only allows you to choose a single frame of animation for your jump and fall, so it doesn't let you animate Sonic spinning around when he jumps. It also can't make enemies die when you roll into them, or when you jump at them from beneath. There are no diagonal tiles, and no moving platforms, or platforms that fall away when you stand on them.

Despite these limitations, I think we can still come up with a pretty fun game. I want to make this project open for the whole Amiga community to contribute to. Anyone is welcome to download Backbone (and its updates) from Aminet, and create their own levels. I can provide the game files I have created so far for people to test their levels with, and once they have made either some levels, tilesets, sprites or music for the game, they can submit it to us, where we can quality-test it and integrade it into the game. It has the potential to be massive if everyone has a go at adding a level or two, and it's really easy to do since there's a whole bunch of sites full of Sonic graphic rips.

So, to show you what I'm proposing, I have made a quick one-level demo of Sonic in Backbone. I have made two versions, one is for expanded Amigas, and really needs a 030/50 or better to run at a playable speed. The other runs in a much smaller screen, but is quicker, and should hopefully be playable on any Amiga. I have tested it on the CD32 and it was alright.

So, here are the files. Download and (hopefully) enjoy:

Expanded Amigas - http://www.spin.net.au/~amiga/Sonic.lha
All Amigas - http://www.spin.net.au/~amiga/Sonic500.lha
CD32 - http://www.spin.net.au/~amiga/SonicCD32.zip

Extract the game to a directory in Workbench and double click the icon. The game can be played with the control pad or joystick or keyboard. For that authentic Sonic feel, plug in a Mega Drive pad. The CD32 version needs to be burnt with MakeCD on the Amiga or something like Alcohol 120% on Windows. It should boot on any CD32. The game works in both PAL and NTSC, whichever your system is running in. It won't run on RTG or AmigaOS4 or anything like that, this is a game made with an OLD Amiga program for OCS Amigas.

If anyone wants to get involved, shout out.

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DBAlex 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 24-Jun-2008 10:16:13
#2 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 23-Jul-2006
Posts: 724
From: The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

@Rebel-CD32

Well, this is basically another one of my hobbies.

Before I got interested in Amigas in about 2005 (talk about bad timing - I could have owned an AmigaOne if it had been a year earlier ) I was solely programming & game making... solely really making Sonic fangames...

Tools I used were Game Maker for Windows and sometimes Multimedia Fusion (a clickteam product... from the same people who brought you AMOS)

And it was pretty fun... but after a while and as I got older I just found it more and more boring... so I got interested in Amigas/AmigaOS... and i've never really looked back to be honest.

As I say I still program but not really games anymore, imho there isn't much point, but I could possibly help if you really want.

Cheers, Alex.

Edit: Also the basics you would need for any sonic engine is the following:

- Hardware Sprite Rotation (Impossible with AGA right?)
- Per-pixel sprite collision (Again...Possible!?)
- Floating point numbers (Most expanded amigas have an FPU)
- Fast input (Not really an issue)
- Fast sprite engine with possibility of large and animated sprites (Hmm?)
- Fast sound engine with possibility of high quality sound samples and background music (Hmm?)

There just some of the basics... I know this because i've written a Sonic "Engine" before... that was in Game Maker though, i'm guessing using C/SDL, AMOS or Blitz Basic it would be even more difficult.

Ok, 2nd edit you will also need Hardware Alpha Transparency for some parts (play Sonic 3 and see end of level bosses etc)... IMHO this is only possible with SDL unless you used a fake technique of capturing background and changing... (slow)

Last edited by DBAlex on 24-Jun-2008 at 10:24 AM.
Last edited by DBAlex on 24-Jun-2008 at 10:22 AM.
Last edited by DBAlex on 24-Jun-2008 at 10:18 AM.

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Lou 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 24-Jun-2008 13:41:34
#3 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 2-Nov-2004
Posts: 4011
From: Rhode Island

@DBAlex

Couldn't the rotated sprites be prerendered?

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Toaks 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 24-Jun-2008 15:23:28
#4 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 10-Mar-2003
Posts: 8042
From: amigaguru.com

@Rebel-CD32

cool, i havent got the cd32 ready right now but i must hook it up asap it seems.

can you show some screenshots for now so i can drool over them?

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DBAlex 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 24-Jun-2008 16:49:48
#5 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 23-Jul-2006
Posts: 724
From: The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

@Lou

Correct, and infact I did it this way once, but then you get the issue of rotated animated sprites... theres where you have an issue and where hardware/software fast rotated sprites are necessary.

_________________
A1200, 68060/64MB/1.2GB/WiFi/AGAtoCRT/OS3.9 Pegasos I, G3 600Mhz/512/9200SE/80GB/AmigaKitWiFi/MOS 1.4.5 WinUAE, Lenovo Intel J2900 Quad,4GB,500GB HD,Win 10 x64 Mac Mini 1.5Ghz PPC Amiga Forever !

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Rebel-CD32 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 24-Jun-2008 19:39:40
#6 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 17-Apr-2004
Posts: 100
From: Australia

The Mega Drive did not rotate the sprites, and neither will I. Sprite rotation is one of the most revolting looking effects ever conceived. Just look at Sonic Advance, when he runs around a loop he becomes a complete mess of random pixels. I already have all the graphics required to show Sonic running around in a circle, straight from the Mega Drive, but Backbone doesn't support angled tiles, so there's no use for them anyway.

This game was made with Backbone, and Backbone is available on Aminet if anyone wants to try it and actually see what's possible with this program. It's very limited, and doesn't allow for you to add extra features.

If a better platform engine comes out in the future, we can always use that to make our next Sonic fangame, they don't have to be related (or sequels). This project in particular is just the start of the ongoing Amiga Sonic fangame project, and for now we're going to use Backbone, because it DOES exist.

This game is NOT meant to be an Amiga version of "Sonic the Hedgehog" from the Mega Drive. It's a whole new game, using Sonic graphics and sounds, in an all-new adventure.

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Rebel-CD32 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 26-Jun-2008 2:34:54
#7 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 17-Apr-2004
Posts: 100
From: Australia

Here's the latest version of the Sonic game I've made. This is it for me, I'm giving the project to the community to continue now so I can get back to working on real Amiga games. I have added a very short second level. I've pushed Backbone to its limits, but this demo should give people an idea of all that's possible to make a Sonic game. You'll see what I mean, and sorry about the jerkiness, it's as smooth as it gets in Backbone.

http://www.spin.net.au/~amiga/Sonic030.lha

This one is also optimised for running on a 030, so it's somewhere between the other two demos in terms of screen size and speed.

I'll set up a web page with all the relative files for people to download and have a play around with in Backbone. I'm not "giving up" or anything, but I never even intended to keep going this far with this Sonic game, since I really should be working on graphics for Annihilation and Halloween Nightmare. So I hope others will want to continue with the game, there's a lot of potential for something fun in there.

I hope you enjoy, I've done the best that can be done within Backbone's limitations.

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xeron 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 26-Jun-2008 8:34:35
#8 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 22-Jun-2003
Posts: 2440
From: Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, England, UK, Europe, Earth, The Milky Way, The Universe

@Rebel-CD32

Why not just write your own platform game engine?

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Crumb 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 26-Jun-2008 11:12:55
#9 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 12-Mar-2003
Posts: 2208
From: Zaragoza (Aragonian State)

@DBAlex

Quote:
- Hardware Sprite Rotation (Impossible with AGA right?)


You could program some kind of accelerated bitmap rotator like the coder of Brian the lion did for the game intro, but painting all the positions by hand would look infinitely better unless you use vector images and render bitmaps in various positions. Taking a bitmap and later rotating it won't look very good.

Quote:
- Per-pixel sprite collision (Again...Possible!?)


It's possible. You could check if sprites are near using "squares" for your calculation to make it faster, if the squares collide later you could check pixel level collision.

Quote:
- Floating point numbers (Most expanded amigas have an FPU)


tables rule. I would never use FPU on a game... you rarely need so high precission and it's too slow. Perhaps with 040/060 and optimized asm loops you could get some advantage, but using tables is both easier and faster.

Transparency is possible using AGA and palette tricks, although with not many transparency levels. If you want many colours you may want to compose the part where something transparent is going to be drawn in fastram and draw the stuff there. Once the correct colours are chosen you could copy it to chipram. It should be faster to compose the image again in fastram than reading chipram and writting there again.

Last edited by Crumb on 26-Jun-2008 at 11:13 AM.

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Lou 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 26-Jun-2008 11:33:24
#10 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 2-Nov-2004
Posts: 4011
From: Rhode Island

Uh, why not pre-render the rotation?
I mean, if memory is the issue, who here only has 512MB?

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Rebel-CD32 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 26-Jun-2008 21:02:01
#11 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 17-Apr-2004
Posts: 100
From: Australia

@xeron

Quote:

xeron wrote:
@Rebel-CD32

Why not just write your own platform game engine?


Why not just write one for me? You seem to think it's really simple, why not have a go yourself?

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Rebel-CD32 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 28-Jun-2008 3:32:12
#12 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 17-Apr-2004
Posts: 100
From: Australia

http://sonicamiga.blogspot.com/

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xeron 
Re: New Sonic the Hedgehog Amiga Fangame Project
Posted on 28-Jun-2008 6:18:02
#13 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 22-Jun-2003
Posts: 2440
From: Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, England, UK, Europe, Earth, The Milky Way, The Universe

@Rebel-CD32

Actually, I'm in the middle of writing a platform game, although its not for AGA.

My point is, a platform game engine is really not a very hard thing to write, and if you sit down and give it a go, you might surprise yourself.

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