2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules

2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172531)
RESULTS ARE POSTED - CHECK THE WEBSITE FOR DETAILS


This year there are two categories.

Category 1:
  • Mapper 28 compatible entry up to 64KB with NO PRG-RAM
  • Prizes as follows:
      1st Place - $512
      2nd Place - $256
      3rd Place - $128
      4th Place - $64
      5th Place - $32
  • Dev. Edition Numbered multicarts (#1 for 1st place, #2 for 2nd, etc) for all meritorious entries (at judges discretion).
  • Judging criteria and full submission requirements to be posted shortly
  • Anonymous entries are allowed if you wish to opt out of receiving a prize, but would still like your submission included.
  • By submitting an entry into this contest, you are giving full consent to use the entry on the multicart. Submissions must meet multicart standards to be inlcuded (at judges discretion).
  • See General Guidelines below.

tepples wrote:
Mapper-specific advice:
  • NROM-128: Be careful not to write to $8000-$FFFF. Test with a breakpoint on writes to ROM.
  • NROM, CNROM: Be careful not to overwrite CHR ROM. Test with a breakpoint on writes to PPU $0000-$1FFF.
  • NROM, CNROM, ANROM, BNROM: $FFD0-$FFF9 of each 32K PRG ROM bank must be unused.
  • UNROM (2): $FFD0-$FFF9 must be unused.
  • UNROM (180): $BFD0-$BFF9 must be unused.
  • A53: Write to register $81 only once, at the beginning of the program, and match the values written to $80 to the size of the entry: $00-$0F for 32K entries and $10-$1F for 64K entries. Specify whether $FFD0-$FFF9 or $BFD0-$BFF9 is unused.


  • Contest runs from June 1, 2016 until January 31, 2017.
  • Entries should be submitted by February 1st 12:00AM CST
  • Commercially released entries, and previously submitted entries with no changes are discouraged.
  • Multiple entries are allowed and encouraged.
  • Only one cash/cartridge/shirt(?) prize will be awarded per entrant across all categories. If multiple submissions place in a cash winning position, the greatest prize will be awarded, and the runner up will receive the prize. You can only win one cash prize. You can only win one cartridge. You can only win one shirt.
  • Entries must be original. Plagiarism and copyright infringement will result in disqualification.
  • Use of existing tools/libraries/code qualify as long as permission has been granted by the author.
  • Collaborations are allowed, prize distribution will be decided by those who collaborated on the project.
  • Explicit content is not prohibited from the competition, but will most likely not be considered for multicart inclusion.


Category 2 (the non-contest):
  • Anything Goes - old unreleased stuff, modified existing stuff, whatever. If it runs on the NES/FC feel free to submit it.
  • There will be no cash prizes awarded for this category.
  • Dev. Edition NON-Numbered multicarts and shirts for all entries included on the multicart (at judges discretion)
  • Depending on the configuration of the entry, it may not be possible to include it on the multicart, however, at the judges discretion NON-Numbered multicarts and shirts will be awarded. For exceptional submissions, extra effort may be done to adapt the game/cartridge hardware to support being included in the multicart.
  • Entrants are not required to consent to multicart inclusion upon submission.
  • Since this category will not be ranked or judged, it will also not be under the strict submission dates and times. If it is submitted before the multicart is released, then it is fair game. Keep in mind, the sooner it is submitted the better chance it will have at making it onto the multicart.
  • Entries in this category will also not be under the restriction of the General Guidelines above, but material you do not have rights to will not be considered for the multicart.

Category 2 is intended to give publicity to homebrewers by having their work placed on the nesdevcompo website, and to encourage entrants to finish their projects.

Judging details, and submission guidelines are on the website. Please reply on this thread, PM me, or email NESHomebrew@gmail.com with any questions or clarification. Thanks and GOOD LUCK to all entrants!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172532)
Thanks for putting the rules out so soon.

I'm preparing two entries right away :)

Very simple question, in regards to this: "Commercially released entries, and previously submitted entries with no changes are discouraged."

I know this is just common sense and can be worked out, but I'd like some official clarification, because I will most likely finish my entries before the deadline. Does this rule encourage me to hold them from being released until they are submitted to the compo?

More specificly:
Can entries be posted on the internet as free ROM downloads before the compo ends?
Can entries be released in physical form before the compo ends?

I would have no problems on waiting or even not releasing the games myself in any form, for the record.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172533)
na_th_an wrote:
Can entries be posted on the internet as free ROM downloads before the compo ends?
Of course, progress threads are encouraged this year. In previous years this wasn't the case and we've since changed our stance on the matter.

na_th_an wrote:
Can entries be released in physical form before the compo ends?
I'd have to ask for other opinions on this. If it is for the anything goes category I don't see it as being a problem, but if it were to be included on the multicart their may be a conflict of interest since the entire competition is funded by the multicart sales.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172534)
Fair enough, I understand that, it was exactly what I thought, yet I found the wording a bit vague. Thank you :)

IMHO, entrants who plan to make carts of their games should wait until some time after the multicart has shipped. This should be encouraged, if not required, taking in account the fact that this whole thing is supported by the sales of the multicart.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172535)
na_th_an wrote:
IMHO, entrants who plan to make carts of their games should wait until some time after the multicart has shipped. This should be encouraged, if not required, taking in account the fact that this whole thing is supported by the sales of the multicart.
At the end of the day, we can't force anyone to do anything. I don't want to be too pushy about making it a rule, since it is usually quite a while after a contest concludes before the multicart is shipped. Maybe we can make it a strong suggestion :)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172538)
NESHomebrew wrote:
na_th_an wrote:
IMHO, entrants who plan to make carts of their games should wait until some time after the multicart has shipped. This should be encouraged, if not required, taking in account the fact that this whole thing is supported by the sales of the multicart.
At the end of the day, we can't force anyone to do anything. I don't want to be too pushy about making it a rule, since it is usually quite a while after a contest concludes before the multicart is shipped. Maybe we can make it a strong suggestion :)

It's probably not a big deal either way. If somebody is working on a larger project that they'd like to put on a cart, they'd probably not entry it in the compo anyways. And if they're working on a smaller project, the chances of them being in a hurry to put it on a cart are low, I'd say. Probably a strong suggestion in this direction would suffice.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172539)
What's A53?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#172540)
dougeff wrote:
What's A53?
Mapper 28. Action 53.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180487)
aaa there are only ten wee-

wait, there's still no official deadline posted yet? :?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180516)
NESHomebrew wrote:
[*]Contest runs from June 1, 2016 until January 31, 2017.
[*]Entries should be submitted by February 1st 12:00AM CST


I really need to update the official website. I will to that either tonight or tomorrow as time allows.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180537)
I'm wondering about the scope and usage of the multicart that will be sold at the end -- I'm looking at some resources that are licensed under a CC-NC license that doesn't allow commercial usage, and trying to determine if that would conflict with how the multicarts will be sold.

Thanks!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180538)
What resources are you referring to? All the usual NES tools are free to use for any purpose.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180541)
dougeff wrote:
What resources are you referring to? All the usual NES tools are free to use for any purpose.


Music, for example. I'm no composer and don't (yet?) have one on board, so was looking around at options for using including some already-made music.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180546)
You could always grab a random classical score off Mutopia Project and arrange it. If a musical work was first published before 1923 and its composer died before 1946, you're in the clear for cover versions.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180554)
Well, I've found some other music that worked. Still curious though, whether you guys would consider this as commercial...
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180565)
We are, as Free Software Fanatics might say, distributing copies of the games on the multicart for a fee. That's commercial.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180575)
Good enough for me, thanks
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180683)
Is it possible to add this one to the Category 2 (the non-contest category)? =) It was heavily updated when this contest just started.

UPD. I've found a bug with speed when not FCEUX is used. So, it will be updated soon =)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#180726)
New version of my demo "Unchained Nostalgia" is released. Now it works fine on real hardware.
Topic on this board is here: http://forums.nesdev.com/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=10672
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#183764)
Is there any battery-backed like save capabilities on the A53 compo cart? I recall vaguely that this was being discussed in the last competition.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#183765)
The mapper supports WRAM in the same way as the iNES version of discrete mappers, equivalent to a 7420 decoding $6000-$7FFF. But it doesn't offer any way to isolate one game's WRAM from another. There are a few ways that could be addressed:

  1. Run two outer bank bits to A14-A13 of the WRAM. Allow only three games to save, and have all other games use WRAM bank 0.
  2. Run two outer bank bits to A14-A13 of the WRAM. Run all games in WRAM banks 1-3, and add a library that copies data (smaller than 8K) in and out of WRAM bank 0.
  3. Add 8K of non-bankable WRAM and make the first few sectors of the ROM self-flashable, with a library that copies files in and out of a log-structured file system.
  4. If possible, fit your campaign's state into 32 bits or less, which is small enough to make a practical password system.

What all state do you want to save in your game?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#183773)
tepples wrote:
The mapper supports WRAM in the same way as the iNES version of discrete mappers, equivalent to a 7420 decoding $6000-$7FFF. But it doesn't offer any way to isolate one game's WRAM from another. There are a few ways that could be addressed:

  1. Run two outer bank bits to A14-A13 of the WRAM. Allow only three games to save, and have all other games use WRAM bank 0.
  2. Run two outer bank bits to A14-A13 of the WRAM. Run all games in WRAM banks 1-3, and add a library that copies data (smaller than 8K) in and out of WRAM bank 0.
  3. Add 8K of non-bankable WRAM and make the first few sectors of the ROM self-flashable, with a library that copies files in and out of a log-structured file system.
  4. If possible, fit your campaign's state into 32 bits or less, which is small enough to make a practical password system.

What all state do you want to save in your game?


I want to save a scoreboard. I want 3 characters for a name + 6 digit score (20 bits ~ 3 bytes). If I use 32 characters for the name entries, I'll have 15 bits ~ 2 bytes per name, or 3 bytes for more characters. 6 bytes per entry, 30 for a table with 5 entries.

Not having saved WRAM is no big deal for me since almost every arcade style game doesn't have a battery backed WRAM to save scores anyway. For me it's more of a luxury than a necessity.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#183781)
Wouldn't the easiest way to achieve this be that entrants who wish to use save ram ask for an amount and are given a reserved fixed address range they should adhere to?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#183783)
Isn't it going to be on flash ROM anyway? You could use flash to save stuff without needing a battery.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#183796)
That's what I meant by "make the first few sectors of the ROM self-flashable, with a library that copies files in and out of a log-structured file system." But if we go that route, the library would have to be extra careful not to brick the game, or we'd need logic in the mapper CPLD to allow write enables to go through to the flash chip only in low-numbered outer banks. (Anyone remember bridging SL1 when installing FlashMe custom firmware on a DS?)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#186140)
This may sound like a dumb question, but...

Where do we submit our entries? :? I was hoping the website would have more details:

http://nesdevcompo.nintendoage.com/
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#186166)
Quote:
Please reply on this thread, PM me, or email NESHomebrew@gmail.com with any questions or clarification. Thanks and GOOD LUCK to all entrants!


I'm not an official, so I'm speculating...

It seems to me that NESHomebrew and tepples are 'running the show', so I would think emailing either/both of them would be considered an official entry. Or posting a ROM in a compo thread should suffice...or do what the Mojon Twins did, and post it on a website, I suppose would work.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#186167)
I'm not accepting entries through email. The appropriate method will be revealed in a few days.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#186735)
tepples wrote:
I'm not accepting entries through email. The appropriate method will be revealed in a few days.


I'm not sure if anyone has noticed, but the website has slowly been updated over the last week. If you see anything that looks strange, or have any questions/comments let me know.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187660)
I'm surprised this isn't stickied, now that 2016 compo is its own subforum.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187666)
Just reposting something I said in another thread:

Punch wrote:
In my opinion it would be nice to have the deadline pushed back by a month (to March 1, 2017) not only because of some projects that are popping up close to the end but because the NintendoAge thread for the competition was posted in January 10th. I'm biased towards it (since I'm not sure if I'll make it in time with my game) but I still think this is beneficial to the competition.


To be quite honest, aside from Wrecking Balls there isn't any late project coming from Nintendo Age and pushing the deadline back to another month might not be enough to motivate new entries from people unaware of the Nesdev thread... but it's not a bad idea if there's enough discrepancy in the number of submissions vs. number of project threads.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187728)
Even though I doubt NA has many devs given the site's nature, I'd be in favor of pushing it back. Naturally, I'm biased as well, not having slept in the last four months kinda put a damper on my progress.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187736)
On the one hand, the approaching deadline has pushed me into gear, and I've made a lot of progress during this plane flight.

On the other, I wonder how many interesting extra details I can afford to get in here if I have more time.

I suppose either outcome is fine for me, really. If it'll help more people get things out, or at least feel like it's worth picking up an otherwise sidelined project, I suppose an extension is for the best.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187738)
It wouldn't be the first time we pushed back a deadline. Sure, the NA thread was neglected, but even those people who said they didn't know about it were actively posting in threads on NA that mentioned they were making their games for the competition.

I'm pretty laid back and flexible, but I don't know if it would be fair to those who already submitted their projects. I'd like to hear what other people think. Also, since we are going to make this a yearly thing, the contest will essentially be starting up again right away once we get all the info sorted from this(last?) years competition. Picking a consistent deadline will be important so there are no surprises in the future. We might also be entertaining the "app" idea from 2014 in the future, since there have been a handful of entries that don't really qualify as games and therefore will have a difficult time fitting into the current judging categories.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187740)
Quote:
I'd like to hear what other people think.


Since prompted, here's my 2 cents:

I voted yes. Normally, i'd say 'no' out of principle. Also, my part in the project recently published as a progress thread is about done and i'm happy with what i've contributed, regardless if the project makes the deadline or not. But for reasons posted in that threads' OP, i voted like i did. You cannot plan for unexpected health issues that are bad enough to set you back, so i think of it as kind of a force majeur case.

I think it's fair enough from a competition standpoint. The ones who've gotten their projects to a presentable state in good time then have time to polish and tweak at their leisure, possibly making their entries more stronger candidates. Some contributors might not want to alter their entries any more though, so that might be a point. On NA, i don't know nearly enough about the forums or the compos' relation to it, there's nothing for me to say on that matter.

I do see the point of having a regular date in the future, though. Like the last sunday in month x or something.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187741)
WheelInventor wrote:
On NA, i don't know nearly enough about the forums or the compos' relation to it, there's nothing for me to say on that matter.

I do see the point of having a regular date in the future, though. Like the last sunday in month x or something.

The involvement of Nintendoage is essentially because they are the only other english website that is involved in homebrew development. Also many people there do not wander over to the NESDev forums, and Dain was willing to host the website at no cost. It was a bit of an effort to bring the communities together.

I thought Jan 31st was a good date since people are usually really busy with holiday prep/finals in December. The only alternative I could think of is some time earlier in the year, but given the date of the announcement that wouldn't leave a whole lot of development time.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187745)
If we do extend I suggest we pick a date that we plan to stick to year in year out. No need to worry about future issues of people not knowing about an upcoming compo and deadline if they can count on the deadline coming the same time each year. That was kind of the original point, pick a date on the calendar to wrap up the compo each year. Then we stick to it so people can count on us holding another compo the following year. To some degree I feel the creditably of the compo degrades slightly if we decide to change the deadline when it's less than a week away. But perhaps that's not something to be concerned about. These are just my thoughts, I don't feel strongly enough to be disappointed/happy one way or the other.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187746)
The credibility argument is what i think i meant by mentioning 'principle', i just couldn't find the right words for it at the time.

One thing that might be good to clarify before the vote has ended, is it constituting or advisory?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187747)
WheelInventor wrote:
One thing that might be good to clarify before the vote has ended, is it constituting or advisory?


The poll doesn't propose a new date either. So it's hard to decide what to do exactly based on the results of the poll alone. Based on this and the fact the poll itself doesn't have a deadline, the presumption is the poll is advisory.

We're less than a week away now so each day that passes, and we leave this question up in the air the bigger mess it becomes.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187748)
Quote:
We're less than a week away now so each day that passes, and we leave this question up in the air the bigger mess it becomes.


True. I'd like to suggest the following outline to get things going:

-someone or some few who already has compo-related community confidence (in the form of managing the compo bugdet, publication, etc) form an interim board. The fewer, the more efficient.
-that board Instates a 24 hour respite starting asap to let community members around the globe/clock figure these questions out and speak their mind in a designated thread. When the respite has ended, it has ended.
-Findings before the respite has ended is taken as advice for the interim board who publish a decision on terms.

It's not perfectly democratically secure, but it's something. The formality of it helps the process be clear and time-exact.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#187749)
infiniteneslives wrote:
We're less than a week away now so each day that passes, and we leave this question up in the air the bigger mess it becomes.


This is why I voted no. I don't really care much what you guys decide, but it just seems a lot easier for y'all to say "we had a deadline, it's done" than to waffle about trying to please everyone.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188017)
Anything decided yet? I'm about to do a quick redesign to my current project to meet the deadline and I was wondering.

I'm just going to assume the deadline won't be extended for now but it would be nice to get an update on the matter.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188022)
I would also like to know what the final decision is. That has a lot to do with what I've got to work on for the next few days.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188026)
I emailed Tepples and NESHomebrew just now in effort to try and form a final decision on this matter.

At this point I would plan for the original deadline.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188030)
It's concluded. Between the 3 of us the decision was made to stick to original deadline of Jan 31st. The goal is to have an annual compo that can be relied upon to end Jan 31st each year. If you've missed out on last year's compo, you're just in time for this year's. There will be ample time for tweaks and polishing of entries prior to cartridge production. Late entries are still welcome and available for inclusion on the cartridge along with any other desired work that is created outside of the compo.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188129)
Sending my email just now, I was hoping for an automated reply to know I didn't make a typo in the address or something. Perhaps something to add for next year to soothe right-before-deadline nerves?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188139)
I feel like this is a dumb question, but do we submit as mapper 28, or as one of the sub-mappers? I have a ROM working with mapper 28, simulating UNROM #2, using prg mode 3. Is that okay?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188145)
calima wrote:
Sending my email just now, I was hoping for an automated reply to know I didn't make a typo in the address or something. Perhaps something to add for next year to soothe right-before-deadline nerves?

I don't do automatic replys, since not all inquiries are for the competition.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188147)
dustmop wrote:
I feel like this is a dumb question, but do we submit as mapper 28, or as one of the sub-mappers? I have a ROM working with mapper 28, simulating UNROM #2, using prg mode 3. Is that okay?
It doesn't really matter what you want to call it, as long as it fits into the criteria.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188151)
If it's submitted using one of the actual discrete mappers (0, 2, 3, 7, 34, 180), the menu software can set the PRG mode.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188154)
NESHomebrew wrote:
It doesn't really matter what you want to call it, as long as it fits into the criteria.


Ok cool.

I had to mess with $5000 and set the prg mode at startup in order to get it to work in FCEUX. I'm guessing that's ok for my submission, but it might have to be changed later, correct? The rules weren't totally clear about how to use the mapper, and the wiki seems more targeted at implementation than usage.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188155)
If changes are needed for multicart menu compatibility, we can work together on those after judging begins.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188159)
Gotcha, thanks!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188203)
I have a question about judging. Maybe it's perfectly clear but remember that English is not my first language:

"The incentive for submitters to vote will be that they will automatically score their own game for full points."

I untderstand that means that if I judge every other entry, the person processing my scores will include my games with full points, is that right? Or that means that if I am judging, I can perfectly score my entries for full points if I want.

Sorry, maybe it's perfectly clear, but bear with me :)

Thanks.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188214)
na_th_an wrote:
I have a question about judging. Maybe it's perfectly clear but remember that English is not my first language:

"The incentive for submitters to vote will be that they will automatically score their own game for full points."

I untderstand that means that if I judge every other entry, the person processing my scores will include my games with full points, is that right? Or that means that if I am judging, I can perfectly score my entries for full points if I want.
I will double check the results, but you would have to give yourself full marks once the judging is ready.

I hope to have everything ready today, so we can get this judged as soon as possible.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188217)
na_th_an wrote:
"The incentive for submitters to vote will be that they will automatically score their own game for full points."


I wouldn't worry about that statement too much. I think it was targetted to help motivate entrants to complete the judging so they can boost their own chances of winning. It's simply mentioning that as an entrant, you are welcomed to be a judge (for all entries including your own). Since you are your own judge, you have the benefit of being able to give yourself the highest marks/grade when scoring your entry. That doesn't mean you *HAVE* to give yourself a perfect score. But everyone else may be doing so, its more of a potential for an extra 'bonus point' for your score if you take the time to complete the judging.

It is a little confusing, and giving yourself unearned high marks might lack modesty for some.. Perhaps an equal but less confusing method would be to have entrants not judge their own work, and simply give all their entries a bonus point if they take the time to submit their scores for judging all the other entries.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188254)
It is now perfectly clear, thanks.

I would find it hard to score my own games for full points taking in account the fact that I consider some of the entries superior. That would not be fair. The thing is that maybe other entrants will do it, which wouldn't be fair in turn. So I really don't know what to do.

I would prefer that entrants didn't have to rank their own games, but I'll adhere to the rules.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188255)
You won't have to rate your own games, but the way I set it up (survey style) is that I don't have to create a separate survey for each entrant.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188305)
I've been enjoying the games that I've seen threads here about. Are all the submissions in, and just still collating? I've been curious what the final list looks like, and if there are other entries besides the ones on this forum.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188308)
rainwarrior wrote:
I've been enjoying the games that I've seen threads here about. Are all the submissions in, and just still collating? I've been curious what the final list looks like, and if there are other entries besides the ones on this forum.

I think there are about 18 entries. I should have the website updated this evening.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188336)
The website has been updated with all the entries (so far). 21 entries... you guys really outdid yourselves. I need to sleep so I will be sending the voting link tomorrow. I'm guessing it will take a while to go through all of these!!

http://nesdevcompo.nintendoage.com/contest16/
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188339)
What a year! It makes me really happy to see so much good stuff! Congratulations to everyone that made a game.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188341)
I'm specially impressed by the number of scrolling platformers in comparison to single screen games, which used to dominate the homebrew scene a while ago. Not to take away from single screen games, they can certainly be innovative and addicting if done right, but technically speaking, it's nice to see that more and more developers are getting out of the "NES comfort zone" and making games that make better use of the hardware.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188342)
Cograts everybody, this year the multicart is going to rock. So many quality games, of all genres!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188344)
Everything has been said, but yeah, congratulations to everyone !
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188346)
I was a bit suspicious of the entry Spacey McRacey, due to similarities to my example game Spacy Shooty. But, after reviewing it's code and graphics...it appears to not have used any of my code or graphics from that game. In fact, this may just be a coincidence. I wouldn't have been angry, BTW, just would have docked you points for unoriginality...IF you had just copied and recycled my game, which you clearly did not.

So, for anyone out there with the same suspicions, Spacey McRacey seems to be a completely original game.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188349)
Congrats everyone! This is the first game contest I've ever participated in and it's definitely something else. I had a blast and am just about ready to set down and start playing some of these awesome entries.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188363)
dougeff wrote:
I was a bit suspicious of the entry Spacey McRacey, due to similarities to my example game Spacy Shooty. .


Yeah, sorry about the naming similarity. I discovered your Spacy Shooty after I had settled on a name. It's an original game (originally I had planned for it to be an Atari 2600 game, which would have pushed that hardware pretty hard being 4-playered, but I wimped out and did it as a NES game). It was a party-game idea I've had floating around in my head for a year or so. It didn't end up being quite as much fun as I'd hoped, but I was happy that I got it done at least.

I didn't post much progress about it here, but there's info about it on my website.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188365)
Saw this tweet today...

@NESHomebrew
Quote:
Also, to any of the entrants, expect an email tomorrow with a judging link. You might want to get a head start though....
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188372)
There's so many great entries, this is gonna be an intense competition! Really excited to see what happens!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188379)
Re: Spacey McRacey

Nice ending screen :)

I feel like this could be what we tell the NESdev Compo winner. ;)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188398)
Judging emails have been sent to the entrants. If you haven't received the email, check your spam folder (surveymonkey.com). If not, please send an email or message me and I will send the link.

Whoops. I also realize I made a mistake. I put January 28th in the description as the closing date instead of February 18th. Not sure how that happened.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188564)
Any chance Russian Roulette can be compressed to fit on the multicart? :roll:
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188565)
Once judging is farther along, I'll see what I can squeeze. If accepted, it'd be the second "remix" entry. Just as DABG on volume 2 was the successor to FHBG on volume 1, your Russian Roulette would be the successor to Russian Roulette on volume 1.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188804)
Jedi QuestMaster wrote:
Any chance Russian Roulette can be compressed to fit on the multicart? :roll:


Is your choice of MMC3 a required one based on features such as IRQs, fine CHR, etc? Or is it just to gain 256KByte of CHR-ROM? Assuming we use hardware similar to years past, we'll need it to be compatible with mapper 28 to support publishing on the cartridge.

Based on us having somewhere on the order of 600-700KByte of PRG-ROM for the category 1 entries alone, we might be forced to target 3v 1MByte+ memories anyway. If that's the case we'll have much more than 32/36 macrocells to spare, meaning we won't really be restricted to mapper 28. Depends on what kind of magic Tepples and enrants are able to pull to condense code banks and compress CHR.

I've got some different ideas on the cartridge hardware that might make trying to fit within 512KByte more hassle than it's worth. But I need some more time to evaluate that front. So as Tepples mentioned we can just focus on completion of judging for now. Once results are posted we can start focusing on the cartridge.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188846)
It uses a lot of fine CHR bankswitching, but no IRQs or anything else special. Only 148kb CHR is actually used, and since each face only takes 576 bytes of the 1024 byte slot, the CHR data should compress excellently.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188852)
I just realized we've actually met our goal of 53 games/tools so perhaps it is time to put everything on a single cart.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188857)
I was planning not to count toys in the 53, only games, and to have at least one compo for improving old stuff.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188932)
I also wanted to get Nova the Squirrel on the final cart, hence trying to keep it mapper 28 compatible. Though that would require adding WRAM.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188957)
I forgot to mention it in my blurb, or anywhere in the actual games...but I should have listed Shiru in the credits, since I'm using the famitone engine, and the unRLE code that goes along with NES Screen Tool.

If anyone thinks I should edit the games to explicitly mention that, let me know. Thanks.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188966)
dougeff wrote:
I forgot to mention it in my blurb, or anywhere in the actual games...but I should have listed Shiru in the credits, since I'm using the famitone engine, and the unRLE code that goes along with NES Screen Tool.

If anyone thinks I should edit the games to explicitly mention that, let me know. Thanks.


I can add it to the blurb if you'd like.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#188967)
Quote:
I can add it to the blurb if you'd like.


Sure. I think that would be appropriate.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189069)
NESHomebrew wrote:
dougeff wrote:
I forgot to mention it in my blurb, or anywhere in the actual games...but I should have listed Shiru in the credits, since I'm using the famitone engine, and the unRLE code that goes along with NES Screen Tool.

If anyone thinks I should edit the games to explicitly mention that, let me know. Thanks.


I can add it to the blurb if you'd like.


If you could credit Shiru for famitone in mine as well, I'd appreciate it.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189071)
mikejmoffitt wrote:
NESHomebrew wrote:
dougeff wrote:
I forgot to mention it in my blurb, or anywhere in the actual games...but I should have listed Shiru in the credits, since I'm using the famitone engine, and the unRLE code that goes along with NES Screen Tool.

If anyone thinks I should edit the games to explicitly mention that, let me know. Thanks.


I can add it to the blurb if you'd like.


If you could credit Shiru for famitone in mine as well, I'd appreciate it.


Same here! I wrote the blurb in a hurry so I forgot.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189324)
Is the award ceremony today?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189328)
calima wrote:
Is the award ceremony today?

I think the judging closes at 11:45PM GMT if I remember correctly.

Then I will have to collect all the responses and calculate the winners. It should be posted by Monday at the latest, then we will be in contact with the entrants and update forum posts/twitter/etc.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189424)
Finally wrapped up my review and got to spend a decent amount of time with all the games. I'm crazy impressed on the all the awesome entries we had. I thought it would take a couple more compos before we'd get to this level. Based on the entries I guess we must be getting close to the right recipe to attracting competitors and exceptional entries. This year's cart is going to be a hit! So many games calling my name to come back and spend more time with.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189560)
Results are in, check the 2016 nesdevcompo page for details! Congrats to everyone, and thank-you for making this competition an exceptional one. Winners, please expect an email within the next few days from either Paul or myself.

-Brad
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189561)
Congratulations. It's been a great compo and we have got a small bunch of great games.

Personally I'm very thankful that I've been able to improve and learn new concepts thanks to other peoples comments and analyses.

It's been a great experience and I'm looking forward next year's compo!

Now it's time to improve our games for the Multicart.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189563)
Congratulations to all of the entrants of the games and a big thank you to organizers for ... organization!

Would it be possible to have the score of games by category? It can be useful to know what is most in need of improvement.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189568)
I guessed right. Twin Dragons (1st) and Nebs and Debs (2nd). I would have put Lala the Magical at 3rd, personally (instead of Filthy Kitchen). No offense, dustmop.

Quote:
Now it's time to improve our games for the Multicart


I feel that the placement of enemies in the Mojon Twin games could be improved. One or two times you jump to the next screen and almost instantly run into an enemy. Other times, the enemy is placed in the most annoying and inconvenient location, like on a tiny platform that you must jump on. I haven't completed either game (it's on my 'to do list').
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189573)
Hahahahahaha, I see my record for coming dead last in every online competition I've ever entered is still unbroken. Kind of peeved that it jinxed my health and dragged a collaborator down with me, but that's life for you.

Congrats to everyone I saved from the wooden spoon, and seconding the request for a score breakdown, if that's not too much trouble.

EDIT

There's a game called CYO in the Category 1 archive that isn't mentioned anywhere else, what's up with that? Was it disqualified or something?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189583)
Code:
dead last


If it had sound, it would have done much better. And maybe a 1 player mode.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189593)
Yay! It's awesome to have placed below two clearly superior creations. I'm very happy to have done so well!

dougeff wrote:
No offense, dustmop.


Not at all, none taken! I was fully aware of the possibility of that outcome.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189609)
Rahsennor wrote:
There's a game called CYO in the Category 1 archive that isn't mentioned anywhere else, what's up with that? Was it disqualified or something?


He contacted the organizers and requested to withdraw his entry.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189612)
Wow ! So stocked I won this competition !
Congratulations to every entrant, there were a lot of nice games, I really had a fun time testing each and every one of them.

I'd like to thank everyone on this forum, every person who shared tips, information, tools, etc for the NES. I couldn't have created this game without all of this, and I'm really grateful.

It really boosts me to expand the game and release it on cartridge this year (hopefully).
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189616)
First thing's first: Congrats to the winners, and honestly, to everyone who entered something. Playing the entries during judging was legitimately fun, and the most fun I've had with an older console in a long time!


I'll add another request for the score breakdown - I'd really love more detailed information on what people liked/disliked. It would also be cool to see what people liked about other games.


I knew I didn't have one of the best games, (and honestly with the quality of the entries, I'm happy to have lost to a lot of them!) but I have to admit, I kinda thought my raw score would be a little higher than it was. The graphics in my entry weren't great, the music was hit-and-miss at best, and the writing was garbage, but I thought the gameplay was pretty solid. I guess I want to see if others felt the same way.


If anyone has direct feedback on Waddles, I'd love to see it. (Probably in its own thread) At this point, I don't think I'll be spending much more time on the game itself. I'd rather focus on figuring out what I could do better next time to make a game people actually want to play.

Thanks to everyone involved for some much needed fun retro gaming.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189617)
Are the results only going to be overall scores? I know the judging forms had scoring categories, and since a few people have requested feedback, maybe the category scores would be helpful to them?


I will say one thing about Filthy Kitchen: my appreciation for it went up a lot when I discovered there was a boss at the end!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189652)
I honestly think Filthy Kitchen deserved the 3rd position. Congratulations, Dustmop :)

About enhacements, yeah. I have a list of things to move around in the map and enemies to place elsewhere.

Is there a deadline before entries must be "frozen" so tepples can do his magic to create the multicart?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189661)
Rahsennor wrote:
There's a game called CYO in the Category 1 archive that isn't mentioned anywhere else, what's up with that? Was it disqualified or something?

I actually hacked CYO for invincibility so I could see what was at the "end". (I felt I needed to play all of them to their conclusion.)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189663)
na_th_an wrote:
Congratulations, Dustmop :)


Thanks very much! Congrats as well, I'm very happy we get to end up on the cart together.

rainwarrior wrote:
I will say one thing about Filthy Kitchen: my appreciation for it went up a lot when I discovered there was a boss at the end!


The result of playtesting! Someone I was showing it to suggested a giant evil fly at the end of the game, so I added it.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189664)
RogerBidon wrote:
Congratulations to all of the entrants of the games and a big thank you to organizers for ... organization!

Would it be possible to have the score of games by category? It can be useful to know what is most in need of improvement.


Here is the spreadsheet for anyone interested.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189671)
When judging there were a few criteria I was judging for that didn't have their own category and got lumped into the overall score. For me the biggest one was replay interest, and game depth. Those both go hand in hand often times, but not necessarily. In my mind a multiplayer game is best when relatively simple but presents an enjoyable group experience/competition. Similarly a relatively short single screen game can have a high replay interest if it's sufficiently addictive and rewards me for beating my previous high score in even a simple way.

I'm not sure if it's worth considering those or other measurements as separate categories of judging in the future or not. But it would have helped 'explain' to the entrant more specifically what it was getting marked on instead of a blanket "overall".

One thing I didn't fully understand when entering my scores was how the different judging categories had different ranges of possible marks. I didn't realize till after I submitted my score that was probably a means of weighting some categories higher than others.

I do have some notes I took on each entry, they're only my own but I'm planning to seek out each entries' thread and give them my feedback. One idea for future judging might be to allow for a free form section where judges can submit feedback to each entrant. Doing that in the judging would make short work for the judge to easily give their feedback and help the entrant know what was most appreciated about their game and perhaps what might need work.

EDIT: one more thing I tried to take into consideration was how easily I was able to pick up the controller and play the game. Sometimes little to no explanation is needed. Other times providing tutorials or help menus is rather necessary and I appreciated when the developer took the time to insert them. When I was left to stumble and figure things out for myself and the blurb provided no help as well, it was a little frustrating and might have affected the polish and completeness score, even though the game was well polished once I managed to figure out how to play.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189674)
Thanks for the scores; that was exactly what I was looking for. It... well, it hurt, but it's what I wanted to see.

The freeform entry field idea sounds good to me - I spent quite a bit of time with every game, and given that there I certainly would have taken the time to fill it out. (Plus, I'm actively soliciting feedback right now.)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189689)
For everyone that submitted, regardless of placement, it's extremely commendable that you put forth the time and effort to put together something, that through the multicart, will be shared with the community.

Ranking low, or even last (in any category), from such a great group is nothing to feel worried about. By even submitting, you've scored higher than myself and leagues of others that didn't submit.

I really wanted to take the time to do an aesthetic critique of each entry, but I've been preoccupied illustrating all of the packaging materials for another project.

If any submitters would be interested in reading a constructive critique of their visuals, send me a PM, and I'll make the time for it.

Otherwise, as a passionate fan of these competitions, who hasn't yet participated in one, I want to thank everyone for the work that you've put in to share these games with us.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189690)
The judging is something we will definitely be revisiting again for the next competition. The sheer volume of entries this year made it more difficult to judge mainly for the time it takes to judge everything. It's great that we keep learning with every competition we've had. Next year should be fantastic!

There is no question in my mind that more time should be invested playing the entries before judging. Especially if you are playing a bunch of games in a row. It may not be intentional, but I'm sure that an equal amount of gameplay isn't being dedicated towards each entry. It's true that some entries don't have a ton of gameplay, while others can have such a learning curve that you don't have time to progress before you need to move on to the next game. Maybe reducing the barriers to play the games might help. Having the games playable and judgeable in a browser would probably be useful. You wouldn't need to download a rom, unzip, read a text file, etc before playing. You could have it all onscreen at once.

I realize that we are still relatively small compared to a lot of software development competitions, but if this years showing has told me anything, it is that we are growing. It has already gotten to the point where doing things manually probably isn't the best option. It has probably also gotten to the point where we should start thinking about having an independent website devoted to the competition. There has been a lot of confusion about who hosts, who owns the competition, etc. The reality is that while the idea started on this forum, it has never been a competition just for NESDev. There are other sites besides NESDev and Nintendoage that have people who program for the NES, and I think a central gathering point for information would be useful. We would obviously have to do some cost analysis and see if the competition can self fund this, or if this is indeed the right direction to head. I have big plans, but sometimes I feel like I need to step back and remember that it isn't MY contest, that it was started by the community. I only make the decisions I am forced to by no one else giving other suggestions :)

cppchriscpp wrote:
Thanks for the scores; that was exactly what I was looking for. It... well, it hurt, but it's what I wanted to see.

Feedback is very important. This is the main reason we encourage people to make build threads or have a dedicated group of friends to do testing. I think with some tweaking to the control of your game it would help it out a lot. That being said, everyone who submitted their games, PLEASE keep working to improve them. The more polished you can make your games the better. We can't exactly put a game with a bunch of bugs on a production cartridge.

@Tepples Would I be right to assume you will be taking the reigns with your custom mapper again this year?

@Moderators Can we please get a 2017 subforum started for brainstorming?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189693)
NESHomebrew wrote:
Maybe reducing the barriers to play the games might help. Having the games playable and judgeable in a browser would probably be useful. You wouldn't need to download a rom, unzip, read a text file, etc before playing. You could have it all onscreen at once.

I remember there being JSNES and em-fceux. Which web-based NES emulator is still maintained? And what kind of latency and Gamepad API support can one expect?

Quote:
@Tepples Would I be right to assume you will be taking the reigns with your custom mapper again this year?

I guess so. I'll probably have to split it into two ROMs for prerelease testing because the PowerPak can't handle more than 4 Mbit (512 KiB) of PRG ROM at once. An 8 Mbit configuration would be the second largest PRG ROM ever (after Action 52) in a commercial, non-Chinese, non-pirate NES game. Hopefully Paul can handle it.

Quote:
@Moderators Can we please get a 2017 subforum started for brainstorming?

I'll look into it.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189698)
dougeff wrote:
If it had sound, it would have done much better. And maybe a 1 player mode.

If I wasn't sick, it would have had all that and more. Really, entering at all was a long shot; I was happy just to make it in the door.

rainwarrior wrote:
I felt I needed to play all of them to their conclusion.

Me too, that's why I didn't participate in the judging - I could only finish one of them. Heck, I couldn't beat the first level of most of them. I'm not as coordinated as I used to be.



Some comments on the games, since I don't really have enough to say to go spamming every thread:

I made it to the final bosses of Twin Dragons and Filthy Kitchen, though only once each and I failed to beat either of them. There were some minor issues, like sprite flickering, but I thought both were excellent games and deserved the placement they got.

I'm a bit disappointed Flappy Jack wasn't up there with them, because, surprisingly, it felt like the most polished entry of the lot - I'd have given it a perfect score. And I don't normally like this kind of game!

Nebs 'n Debs was fun, but the level design was too punishing and getting killed by the glitches really killed the mood. Bumped my head and died too many times to count... but I did actually beat this one! Or made it to the credits, at least. It's a bit unfinished as-is but has a lot of potential.

The three Mojon Twins games were technically spot-on, but I have a bee in my bonnet about games made by and for horny teenage boys and would have given them all the minimum possible score, because I'm asinine like that. Another reason I decided not to vote. Moving on, there were just a handful of enemy and platform placements that cost me a life every single time, and one game-breakingly wide pit in Lala. If there was a way across that thing, I couldn't find it, even with two platforms.

Sinking Feeling made me laugh. I didn't get the reference but it was funny anyway.

Karate Kick was very smooth, very intuitive, and I actually manage to do quite well at it. But I imagine diagonals wouldn't be so much fun on an actual controller and there's really not much to it.

The Paths of Bridewell really caught my attention. It obviously lacked polish, and was too hard and tedious for me to finish, but I think it could really go places. Keep at it!

Jupiter Scope 2 and CYO both looked, sounded and felt great, but the gameplay was a complete letdown. Maybe I've played too much Touhou.

Spacey McRacey was way, way, way too fast for me to handle. It was, however, hilarious.

I never figured out Mini Brix Battle. I found it completely unplayable; I can't bounce the balls back and there aren't enough balls to finish the levels without doing so. I know it's my nervous system at fault but I can't judge what I can't play.

My experience with Waddles the Duck went like this: QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK *ALT-F4*. The jumping sound effect drove me bananas. So did the jump physics, for that matter. The warping mechanic was fun and intuitive, but the rest of the game was torture.

Super Tilt Bro.: I'm still trying to wrap my head around the fact that this is a thing. I'm also still unable to play Super Smash Brothers, and managed to lose to the non-existant AI. (Yes, lose to a character doing absolutely nothing. That's how bad my motor control is nowdays.) But still, wow.

Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Sbock makes no sense. Maybe I need a sense of humor.

And finally, I have no idea how to rate something like the 240p test suite. You keep doing what you do, tepples.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189700)
Finally, real feedback!

It's probably not your fault... there are two major issues and a minor one that I wanted to fix but didn't have time:

- levels don't have enough space between the player and the lowest tile: this happened because I chose to do 16x16 and that doesn't leave much space to do stuff. I tried to work around it by creating "strategies" in each level so the player can release the ball and break as much as possible before reflecting it again against the paddle was needed, but that only goes so far. Redoing that would require drastic code changes, I realized it too late to fix it.

- heightmap-angle relationship was wonky - The fixed angles I introduced weren't enough to give the player good control of the ball trajectory, and how this was chosen was counterintuitive in relation to the shape of the paddle (umbrella). I feel like there's something wrong with what angles are chosen depending on the ball position. This is not a hard fix but it could have introduced hard to find bugs...

- paddle is too small - this could have been fixed more easily but I had no time to make a bigger paddle and/or powerups for enlarging it. That would have made the game more manageable.


Anyway I had a blast creating and playing it, and so did my sister (my beta tester :P), the difficulty issue was noted but we didn't think it was "unplayable". It is certainly unfair sometimes though. It's not a well designed game, the rushed development really shows. Thanks again for the feedback.

Fun fact: I've designed the ball object to be able to move in 1 to 8 vector units per frame, but the game has them locked at speed 2 since it's too difficult at that speed. Also the time counter doesn't actually count real seconds, 99 seconds is not nearly enough for most of the levels. :lol:
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189701)
Rahsennor wrote:
Spacey McRacey was way, way, way too fast for me to handle. It was, however, hilarious.


Heh, it was a little bit slower until close to the deadline, when one of my main testers said "it just needs to be faster!". Maybe I paid too much attention to that advice :)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189702)
gauauu wrote:
Rahsennor wrote:
Spacey McRacey was way, way, way too fast for me to handle. It was, however, hilarious.


Heh, it was a little bit slower until close to the deadline, when one of my main testers said "it just needs to be faster!". Maybe I paid too much attention to that advice :)


I thought it was good. Had a lot of fun with the wife :)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189704)
Thanks Rahsennor for the full reviews! I love it.

tepples wrote:
I remember there being JSNES and em-fceux. Which web-based NES emulator is still maintained? And what kind of latency and Gamepad API support can one expect?


From experience:

JSNES is not really usable as it have no sound and strange glitches.

Em-fceux is awesome: all the features of fceux + asmjs speed. It also handles gamepads nicely and is easy to patch. I use it for the itch.io page of SuperTiltBro and it is awesome. Note that the demo page of em-fceux is not up-to-date with their git repo, try directly the master ;)

Cycloa-js. This ones does the job and is easier to integrate than em-fceux as it is native javascript. It may be a bit slow at times especially when playing music, does only handle NROM if I remember and is unable to run in PAL video mode. I used it before finding em-fceux.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189713)
Quote:
one game-breakingly wide pit in Lala


I thought so too at first. But, actually, you have infinite platform powers. I'll explain. You probably tried... run and jump, and make a platform and jump immediately... and fall to your death. No. You run and jump and make a platform and WAIT until a millisecond before your platform disappears, then jump and make another platform closer to your destination.

However, I do agree with (rainwarrior ? I think) that platform making should be ONE BUTTON. There were so many times I thought I pressed correctly for platform making, but really she just waved her wand... and I fell to my death. Grr.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189743)
I just sent the cash prizes the top 5 entrants!


Quote:
I'll probably have to split it into two ROMs for prerelease testing because the PowerPak can't handle more than 4 Mbit (512 KiB) of PRG ROM at once. An 8 Mbit configuration would be the second largest PRG ROM ever (after Action 52) in a commercial, non-Chinese, non-pirate NES game. Hopefully Paul can handle it.

Yeah do you still have your kazzo programmer? I could put together a 32Mbit or 64Mbit mapper 28 cartridge for you for testing. Prob will end up producing on 1Mbit, but may as well send bigger version so it's potentially useful in the future.

Perhaps it's time for a separate cartridge thread to come up with a plan with this carts release. I get frequent requests from the public for purchase of vol1. It saddens me to have to constantly turn these homebrew gaming fans away and tell them to come back in a few years. If there's no chance for this year's cartridge to fit within 4Mbit, then we're effectively forced to jump to 3v flash. And once all the level shifters are on the board to support 3v parallel flash, the cost differential between 8-16Mbit or even 32Mbit is minor on the order of 12cents per doubling. So that presents an opportunity to have a long term release of vol1 titles that I think we need to consider.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#189928)
How much room is left on the cart?

If there's room to spare, I'd be happy if Ralph 4 could be included. Also some other games to consider from people who might not post in this thread: Prez, MashyMashy, BSides.

Congrats on the best nesdev competition ever. :beer:
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190025)
There is a decent amount of room left on the cart. Feel free to offer any non-compo entries up for inclusion and we'll do our best to include what we can.

As discussed in A53 vol3 cart thread entries have until end of March to make any changes to their entry. If you find a bug past that date reach out to us and we may still be able to patch it in.

I'm proposing this schedule for future compos as well. Jan 31st concludes compo. Judging complete during Feb. Game improvements, and bug fixes to be submitted by Mar 31st for guaranteed inclusion on the cartridge. Artwork and printed materials to be finalized in April. Printing and cartridge assembly during May/June, cartidge release in June/July.

Now that the compo is effectively complete, it's probably time to start discussing any changes were looking to implement for next year's compo. Maybe we try to officially announce the next years compo by end of March? That would align with the transition from last min tweaking of last compo entry to starting on next year's entry.

Note to self: Also about time for another financial report!
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190026)
At this point, I'd recommend reserving the main category for games only, even if they do fit the technical requirement (64K discrete), as I can't think of criteria to judge both games and "toys" (non-games).
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190062)
tepples wrote:
At this point, I'd recommend reserving the main category for games only, even if they do fit the technical requirement (64K discrete), as I can't think of criteria to judge both games and "toys" (non-games).


Makes sense, they can always go in the free-for-all category if people would like them included.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190078)
I have older / unreleased material if you want to fill up free space, by the way.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190087)
I produced another pair of truncated builds for the PowerPak with the submultis, and a round of testing yesterday revealed several problems that I'll need to fix over the next few weeks.

  • Attribute corruption in Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Sbock and Spacey McRacey. I'm not sure if I overestimated how many zeroes at the end are unused or if they actually have problems with uninitialized memory.
  • Filthy Kitchen freezes at Game Over, with some stray letters at the upper left corner. I forgot to write down exactly what the letters were.
  • Cheril the Goddess map is scrambled.

I am also aware of several problems that I can fix without knowledge of each game's internals:

  • Builder: Reset patch works only for NROM games and automatic submultis, not for UNROM games. I'll try to fix this in the builder.
  • Menu: Load all banks of CNROM if activity requests it
  • Builder: Write whether activity record requests all CNROM banks
  • Menu: Integrate JRoatch's coredump tool

About frequency of my status updates to this topic: Should I keep quiet until I have fixed all four of these?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190115)
tepples wrote:
Should I keep quiet until I have fixed all four of these?


No way, your updates give me something to read while I should be working :)

Quote:
Attribute corruption in Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Sbock and Spacey McRacey. I'm not sure if I overestimated how many zeroes at the end are unused or if they actually have problems with uninitialized memory.


Yeah, I noticed this. I'm not sure the answer (haven't had time to look carefully), but I'm guessing for Spacey McRacey, it's more related to uninitialized memory. I don't think there's any reason chopping zeroes at the end would cause the attribute corruption.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190121)
Quote:
Rock Paper Scissors


Which build? 5 ? Probably didn't zero all tables. The original is non-scrolling, so I probably only zeroed one table, or maybe I forgot altogether. It was rushed.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190125)
na_th_an wrote:
I have older / unreleased material if you want to fill up free space, by the way.

Well if we have officially doubled the space, then post what you've got, or send it to Tepples directly and we'll see what we have room for. I see no reason to exclude things if we still have space.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#190142)
I always have experiments I can quickly tune into little games. Let me see :)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#191927)
(probably silly) question: Will the ROMs at the compo site will be updated with the latest versions, or will they be substituted for the multicart download?

I'm asking 'cause some entries have been improved, most changed, and some even bug fixed.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#191977)
There's a big 'revised' folder in my Action 53 volume 3 project folder that I could zip and upload here once the cart goes gold.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#191997)
I'm
na_th_an wrote:
(probably silly) question: Will the ROMs at the compo site will be updated with the latest versions, or will they be substituted for the multicart download?

I'm asking 'cause some entries have been improved, most changed, and some even bug fixed.


In the past I didn't update any of the entries, but if tepples does upload all the final versions that will be on the Cart, I would be happy to put a disclaimer at the beginning of the compo page and link to the latest download.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#192006)
Quote:
In the past I didn't update any of the entries, but if tepples does upload all the final versions that will be on the Cart, I would be happy to put a disclaimer at the beginning of the compo page and link to the latest download.
Supplement, not replace, please.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#192010)
My ream concern is that one of my games can't really be finished, that's all :-)
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#192020)
na_th_an wrote:
My ream concern is that one of my games can't really be finished, that's all :-)


In that case I could make an exception and change the main download. Maybe not change it, but just add it (also maintaining the original version).
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#193906)
VEG wrote:
Is it possible to add this one to the Category 2 (the non-contest category)? =)

Good luck getting permission from Alex North's music publisher for that tune. Rainwarrior might have the best idea of how to approach this after having done MOON8.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#193907)
My approach for MOON8 was to pretend it's covered by mechanical royalties and pay them as such.

YMMV, but probably I would have had the same result (i.e. nothing) if I had not paid royalties at all. At least I can say it "felt" more legal.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#195952)
Rahsennor wrote:
Jupiter Scope 2 and CYO both looked, sounded and felt great, but the gameplay was a complete letdown. Maybe I've played too much Touhou.

…"CYO"? I don't see that anywhere.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#195961)
Cover Your Own is a hypertext viewer that I developed for Hagen's Alley Books back in February to port gamebooks to the NES. One was shown at Midwest Gaming Classic 2017, if I remember correctly. That's why I asked a month ago if anyone knew of suitable gamebooks: I've been given the OK to release Cover Your Own to the public, and I wanted something to test with, possibly to fill unused space in Action 53 volume 3.

EDIT: Oh, you're talking about that CYO, the one that was withdrawn.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#196047)
Hmm. Well, it's not in that "archive". Archive.org's copy isn't old enough, either. Don't suppose anyone has a copy I could have?
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#196050)
Myask wrote:
Hmm. Well, it's not in that "archive". Archive.org's copy isn't old enough, either. Don't suppose anyone has a copy I could have?

I'm pretty sure you can find a thread on Nintendoage for it.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#196053)
Ah. Looks like there was ☠‼drama‼☠, and user (apparently*) took the ROM down from that thread as well, along with asking others not to redistribute it nor hacks thereof.

Oh well. I just wanted to see what the "neat graphics" were. I snooze, I lose, I guess. […wonder what that would evaluate to in Latin.]

(joke) Well, Action 52 was known for having too many shooters…(/joke)

*assuming testimony is accurate and also attachments aren't visible to guests on NA
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#196064)
Myask wrote:
Oh well. I just wanted to see what the "neat graphics" were. I snooze, I lose, I guess.


For what it's worth, I recorded a little of gameplay while judging compo entries: https://youtu.be/N4Au0oc1BrU?t=10m33s
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#196072)
Looks about like the report: smooth, competently-programmed shooter without other distinction.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#196081)
What you see in that video is all of it, really. The two slightly differently shaped grey blob enemies each only took damage from one of the two shot types and you switch at will. There's a bomb that clears the screen as well, limited supply.

No sound effects, and that same 3 second music loop the whole time. There's no other variation in the game, no waves, just the same thing happening continually.

The readme suggested that you could win by playing to 9000 kills, if I recall. I hacked myself invincible with infinite bombs to do this, and it still took a while (with fast-forward on my emulator) to get there. Your reward for this is a black screen that says "A VICTORY!", similar to the "GAME OVER" screen.
Re: 2016 NESDev Compo - Guidelines/Rules
by on (#198232)
For anyone wishing to try CYO its author contacted me and gave me this link to share, where you can download the ROM:

http://nemesys.atspace.com/alienes/cyo.html