Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

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bullis1
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by bullis1 »

Nyh wrote: Yep, spindash mode is a simple solution. I would appreciate the game to have loops. That makes it into a real Sonic.
BTW: should we call it Sonic and make it such an obvious ripoff? I don't want SEGA to get nasty on us.
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Well, Sega hasn't been nasty to anyone in the past for making fan-games. Speaking of which, a new Sonic game for Sega CD just came out that I recommend everyone (with a Sega/Mega CD) check out. It's called Sonic Megamix.

Anyway, you could always call it something else. It's nicer to have something of your own anyway. That's why I originally suggested making all-new gfx for it. Here's a crappy name suggestion: FUJIC

I just remembered that some very well commented and arranged disassemblies of the 16-bit Sonic games are available. The ASM code of the Sonic games has been modified and optimized many times and even ported by other people. I think that modifying Heartland 2000 is the best way for your purposes but I thought I'd mention this anyway because it's related.
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by nativ »

STonic,
Suppose that's a bit like STario!!
Harold the Hedgehog in Heartland?!
Catchy!

SaTanic the Hedgehog, change the colours from blue to red?
SaTiric the Hedgehog, give him an orange wig and a big red nose!?

???

Going on the Slaytanic? Cult STe demos, especially the one with 9 screens in one that gets thown around at speed! Things might turn out . . . . . . just great!

:o: Cyber Sculpt and Sonic?!

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by MiggyMog »

SaTiric the Hedgehog, give him an orange wig and a big red nose!?
I think the Top Notch authors of the Missing link map definer might well approve of that one :cheers:

Although you might well need to keep the body blue with a white cross!

I am trying to remember which demo has Sonic running about in fullscreen(With parallax?) and playing Rhythim is a dancer in the Background?

*Just found it, it's STAX's Revolution, Gigadrive screen. Horrible Main menu which Thankfully can be avoided using help & F Keys
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by nativ »

Aye, t'was that the demo Sonic appeared in, i almost thought it was on the Falcon!

Bravehog!

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by MiggyMog »

That'll be two 8 way scrollers in development then? *Nudge*
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by nativ »

!!!another 8 way scroller!!!
Called 'Nudge'!

Just like waiting for busses! what's the third one called?
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Nyh »

bullis1 wrote:Anyway, you could always call it something else. It's nicer to have something of your own anyway. That's why I originally suggested making all-new gfx for it. Here's a crappy name suggestion: FUJIC
I also prefer original graphics and levels. If done the right way you get a better game as just trying to convert Sonic. When you do your graphics and levels yourself you can focus on the strengths of the game engine (lots of animated tiles on screen at the same time) and hide the weak points (no free moving sprites) by making clever use of the animated tiles.

But as my main objective is writing a game engine for a Sonic like game I don't care too much about the graphics. I is easy to replace the Sonic sprite with another newly drawn sprite. The big challenge for me is to make Sonic like game dynamics. Now I am using the Sonic sprite in the Heartland environment to test the game dynamics because that is all I have at the moment.

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by simonsunnyboy »

Just to keep motivation up, any chance for a runnable preview and/or screenshots? :)
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by MiggyMog »

I also prefer original graphics and levels. If done the right way you get a better game as just trying to convert Sonic. When you do your graphics and levels yourself you can focus on the strengths of the game engine (lots of animated tiles on screen at the same time) and hide the weak points (no free moving sprites) by making clever use of the animated tiles.

But as my main objective is writing a game engine for a Sonic like game I don't care too much about the graphics. I is easy to replace the Sonic sprite with another newly drawn sprite. The big challenge for me is to make Sonic like game dynamics. Now I am using the Sonic sprite in the Heartland environment to test the game dynamics because that is all I have at the moment.
I think an original sonic fan game is the way to go, a straight port as you say would just point out the weeknesses & bring nothing new wheras a tribute game would attract even non ST folk to have a go.

The preshifted tile for pseudo paralax has been used a few times on the ST, and also the waterfall can be done with a palette shift alla neochrome (Is this how that other 8 way game Turrican does it too?) you can also use palette shifing for fake paralax, I tried this years ago in Stos and then put a sprite on top to fool the eye. It needs at least three colours to work though :-(
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by darklight »

I only suggested ripping sonic graphics because someone mentioned that all new game initiatives generally fail at the point of delivering on new graphics.

Ripping the graphics seemed like a quick & easy alternative to coming up with new ones - I'm kind of interested in creating new graphics but it will take some time (and I for one have a lot on my plate right now), whereas I reckon I can rip all the master system graphics / levels by next week.

I'll still continue in my quest to get the sonic graphics onto ST, but if anyone does feel like coming up with a whole new set, go for it! (Please see my list of ideas for level themes in a previous post in this thread :D )
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by insanity »

As a proof of concept, I'd consider using some of the original maps...

The maps of the original can be found at the bottom of this page.
http://www.smspower.org/maxim/maps/sonic.html

If you're a really cool programmer and have the time, you could write a program to do this:
1. load up map picture
2. split up map into 8x8 blocks (or whatever size each block should be)
3. loop through all blocks:
comparing against previous added tiles,
if new add to list and store index to map
if not new, use existing tile index and store to map.

This should create a list of unique tiles (assume picture is not compressed!) and a list of tiles to make up the map:

Tiles:
1 => blue sky
2 => cloud right
3 => cloud middle (etc. you get the idea)

Map:
1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1 => could represent the sky! :)

Just an idea...

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by darklight »

Hi baz, that is the same idea I had too :) Tiles are 16x16 pixels. Quite a bit of work to convert things like rings into animated tiles, enemies to sprites, and possibly other touching up here & there. But its all possible!
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Nyh »

MiggyMog wrote:The preshifted tile for pseudo paralax has been used a few times on the ST, and also the waterfall can be done with a palette shift alla neochrome (Is this how that other 8 way game Turrican does it too?) you can also use palette shifing for fake paralax, I tried this years ago in Stos and then put a sprite on top to fool the eye. It needs at least three colours to work though :-(
The problem with using color cycling for effects is those colors are not available for the normal tiles where you don't want a color cycle. For a waterfall just use animated tiles. And forget about parallax scrolling. It is nice eye candy but doesn't add anything to the game play.

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Nyh »

insanity wrote:As a proof of concept, I'd consider using some of the original maps...

The maps of the original can be found at the bottom of this page.
http://www.smspower.org/maxim/maps/sonic.html

If you're a really cool programmer and have the time, you could write a program to do this:
1. load up map picture
2. split up map into 8x8 blocks (or whatever size each block should be)
3. loop through all blocks:
comparing against previous added tiles,
if new add to list and store index to map
if not new, use existing tile index and store to map.
As far as I can see the map is not compressed so we could use this method to extract the tiles. But this version of Sonic is lacking the loops. I especially like the loops in Sonic. Anyone found a map like this of a Sonic version with the loops?

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by darklight »

These are the master system / game gear levels, which have simpler graphics.

Loops exist in the megadrive version, but the graphics are much more detailed and (probably) wont covert down to 16 colours very well. Loops can be added to the master system graphics, if someone is willing to draw the graphics, and redesign the levels. If I get the original master system graphics / levels converted, I'll think about loops as a next step.
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by bullis1 »

darklight wrote:These are the master system / game gear levels, which have simpler graphics.
Loops exist in the megadrive version, but the graphics are much more detailed and (probably) wont covert down to 16 colours very well. Loops can be added to the master system graphics, if someone is willing to draw the graphics, and redesign the levels. If I get the original master system graphics / levels converted, I'll think about loops as a next step.
There are 3 8-bit sonic games that contain loops: Sonic Chaos, Sonic Triple Trouble, and Sonic Blast. It would be best to rip from the GameGear versions due to better source material but these games are also available for the Master System (at least Chaos and Blast are, anyway).
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by darklight »

Hey nyh - you said the enemies couldnt move around - does this mean they are map tiles? Can anything be a sprite / bob (e.g. rings, those power up tv thingys etc) - or does everything apart from the main character have to be a tile?
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Nyh »

darklight wrote:Hey nyh - you said the enemies couldnt move around - does this mean they are map tiles? Can anything be a sprite / bob (e.g. rings, those power up tv thingys etc) - or does everything apart from the main character have to be a tile?
Yes, everything apart from the main characters has to be a tile. But as you can see in Heartland 2000 we can have nice animated tiles likes the coins, flasks and pointy things.

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Nyh »

insanity wrote:The maps of the original can be found at the bottom of this page.
http://www.smspower.org/maxim/maps/sonic.html

If you're a really cool programmer and have the time, you could write a program to do this:
1. load up map picture
2. split up map into 8x8 blocks (or whatever size each block should be)
3. loop through all blocks:
comparing against previous added tiles,
if new add to list and store index to map
if not new, use existing tile index and store to map.

This should create a list of unique tiles (assume picture is not compressed!) and a list of tiles to make up the map:
Well, it seems I may call myself a really cool programmer. :wink:

I wrote a program to extract titles from the pictures you linked to. Well, not quite directly, you will have to convert the pictures to a 16 color BMP picture yourself. Then you can feed one (or more pictures with the same colors) to my program. The program will extract all unique 16x16 tiles in the picture(s), up to a maximum of 256 tiles. It doesn't output the map (yet). If you tell me which map editor you want to use I will make the output format for that map editor.

Make very sure the tiles in the picture are aligned to the 16x16 grid, otherwise you will have far too much tiles. For some levels this means shifting the picture 8 pixels to the left and/or up. Some careful editing for removing sprites, or moving the one line up, like the monitors will greatly reduce the tile count. It seems also a good idea to move the rings 8 pixels higher or lower as they are not aligned with the 16x16 grid (as they are animated tiles it is very important to have them aligned with the 16x16 grid).

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Nyh »

I added some extra output functionality to the program. Now it also outputs the sprites as a .BMP file. The map is output as a simple binary file.

You can load the .bmp sprites and the map in Tile Studio (http://tilestudio.sourceforge.net/. While importing the tiles don't forget to set the tile size on 16x16 and select transparent color: None. When you create a new map you will have to enter the map size as was given by BMP2TIL.TTP (Mapsize = X x Y). Then you can import the map in the menu Map, Import Map and use the option 8 bit, 0 based.

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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by Stefan jL »

Nyh wrote: Yes, everything apart from the main characters has to be a tile. But as you can see in Heartland 2000 we can have nice animated tiles likes the coins, flasks and pointy things.
This really takes away the possibility to do a Sonic conversion as it will not play at all as any of them.
The only way would be to do is to change the gameconcept to something like a Sonic "racing game", there is a SNES game with disney characters that is like a sidescroller version of Sega's "Up'n Down" arcadegame (i don't remember the name right now), i think the Heartland engine would fit that genre perfect.

Btw there is a demo by the Wild Boys that uses Sonic levelgraphics... "Dreamzone" i think.
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by bullis1 »

Stefan jL wrote:
Nyh wrote: Yes, everything apart from the main characters has to be a tile. But as you can see in Heartland 2000 we can have nice animated tiles likes the coins, flasks and pointy things.
This really takes away the possibility to do a Sonic conversion as it will not play at all as any of them.
Not really. When playing sonic, I'm usually killed by level hazards (spikes, lava, bottomless pits) and not the enemies. They move so slow compared to sonic that they practically are stationary and they are easily dodged. You can randomly kill enemies while spinning/jumping but will still get hurt by hazards.

Obviously the thing that hasn't been discussed is boss battles. Those would surely require a great deal more code and effort as there is nothing similar in HL2000. As well as the rotating bonus stages (in the MegaDrive game). My fvourite part of Sonic was always running at high speeds through nice stages with great music and collecting as many rings as possible. Also, exploring and finding secrets. I think the HL2000 engine will definitely provide these aspects of the game.
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by powerman_twb »

The main menu of our Dreamzone demo used Sonic graphics...but not Sonic himself, we used Cool J Charlie for the character you control, he's much cooler.
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Re: Let's convert Sonic to the ST!

Post by PaulB »

I forgot all about this thread. It sounded very promising. Did anything get done?
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