Ballerburg

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spitfire_ch
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Ballerburg

Post by spitfire_ch »

Hi board

Ballerburg is an old artillery game by Eckhard Kruse for monochrome displays. Since many years or rather decades I am facing the problem that it would run on one PC but not the other. Whenever I buy a new PC, I take the risk that I won't be able to get the game to work, as it is the case now. Even when I copy the emulator settings from the old machine to the new, it does not help. I have tried various emulators (WinSTon, Steem, Hatari) with various TOS images and settings, but to no avail: When I try to start the game, I am greeted by the infamous bombs or some other kind of crash, depending on the Emu and the TOS.

I suspect that this is related to the PC hardware or Windows version. Has anyone had experience with similar problems? Is there possibly a Windows setting, a GPU setting, just anything that could be adjusted? (I mean, of course there is, but does anybody know which setting could be the culprit?)

My current machine:

OS: Windows 10 64 bit
CPU: Intel Core i7-8700
RAM: 16 GB
GPU: GeForce GTX 1080

I am trying to launch the game from an emulated HDD.

Thanks for any help!
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Eero Tamminen
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by Eero Tamminen »

I've never had any problems with it, but I'm using my own build. It's available from here: http://eerott.mbnet.fi/hatari/programs.shtml#baller

Have you made sure that you started Ballerburg with monochrome monitor/resolution, and that your game files are readable?
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by mlynn1974 »

I have never seen this game before but I have just tested it on STeem 3.2 (1Mb, Monochrome, STF) with TOS 1.0 (English) and it runs fine.
Are you using the German Language version of TOS 1.0? Maybe try the English Language version of TOS 1.0.
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spitfire_ch
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by spitfire_ch »

Great, thanks a lot! Your new version (BALLERVC.PRG, the other PRGs crash) works in good old WinSTon (v04)!

I haven't been successfull to get it to run in Steem SSE 3.9.4, but mainly because the GEM HDD doesn't recognize new files. It sees the new folder, but nothing inside, weird. But that's something with my Steem installation. The main thing is that it now works with an emulator at all!

Edit: I also tried Hatari: your version works, the original doesn't. In Steem, I can't get the original version to work, independent of the TOS I use (I also tried UK TOS 1.0). It did work on older machines, though. It rather seems to be an incompability of my current system (not the emulation) with the original. And your version fixed that. So again, thanks a ton!

Btw: way back then, I created some additional castles by editing baller.dat. If you are interested, just grab the uploaded file (BALLERdat.zip). It also contains some crappy castles (experiments), that would have to be cleaned out, but the final ones are ok.
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by 1st1 »

You have Windows 10, so why so complicated...?
baller2.jpg
Microsoft App Store
baller1.jpg
Ballerburg runs native in Win 10

Have fun!
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spitfire_ch
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by spitfire_ch »

Cool, I didn't know that!
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by darwinmac »

If you simply want to play Ballerberg and no other ST game, I would take 1st1's suggestion and simply download it from the Microsoft Store. However, I had no problems running the original ST version from Hatari. However, I created an ST image (.st) using MSA converter from the original zip file. I inserted that floppy image into drive A and it worked immediately.

I have noticed that some programs do not like the GEMDOS drive. Therefore, I tend to create hard drive and floppy images. I only use the GEMDOS drive if I'm creating a file that I want to email someone later. Then, the file is already on my Mac and easily accessible.

Bob C
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Eero Tamminen
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by Eero Tamminen »

Always when extracting a ZIP, make sure that the extracted directories and files are readable (some ST Zip programs are buggy and set wrong file attributes).

Things may work better if you create Atari floppy image from the ZIP file because:
* FAT file system on floppy images doesn't support all of these file attributes, like your host file system does, so things may work even with wrong file attributes
* Some Atari programs are hard-coded to use A: drive, and don't work from any harddisk (whether it's harddisk image or GEMDOS HD)

Things not working from GEMDOS HD is extremely rarely due to GEMDOS HD usage itself (old Hatari version had some problems, but those GEMDOS HD issues have been fixed).
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by darwinmac »

Eero,

I only went by my past experience. After running into trouble with it, I simply stopped using it as it wasn’t worth the trouble. I’m glad to hear that compatibility with it has improved.

Since I can fast forward the floppy load time, I don’t need to use a hard disk unless the program is too big to fit on a floppy.

I think the original poster should be able to use the st floppy image in Steem or Hatari.

If he only wants to play the one game, the Windows store recommendation is probably the easiest.

Bob C
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dma
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by dma »

As i wanted to check that, the original game's author knows and talked about the Windows version, so it seems a legal/approved port.

Also thanks for sharing your custom castles data file!
spitfire_ch
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by spitfire_ch »

darwinmac wrote:If you simply want to play Ballerberg and no other ST game, I would take 1st1's suggestion and simply download it from the Microsoft Store. However, I had no problems running the original ST version from Hatari. However, I created an ST image (.st) using MSA converter from the original zip file. I inserted that floppy image into drive A and it worked immediately.

I have noticed that some programs do not like the GEMDOS drive. Therefore, I tend to create hard drive and floppy images. I only use the GEMDOS drive if I'm creating a file that I want to email someone later. Then, the file is already on my Mac and easily accessible.

Bob C
Thanks! I can confirm that your floppy version works, even in STeem! So the issue really does seem to be related GEMDOS, especially the STeem implementation of it. Eero's version of the game works in GEMDOS, but only in WinSTon, not in STeem. My old versions don't work on any emulator on my current machine, but they work in WinSTon GEMDOS on my old machine. So, there seem to be multiple factors, GEMDOS beeing an important one of them.

Now, I have several solutions to my original problem. Great board, very helpful people, thank you very much, all of you! :)
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Re: Ballerburg

Post by darwinmac »

I am glad the floppy image worked for you. Since you use Windows, I would recommend Steem for the Windows interface.

As a Mac user, I prefer Hatari but the Windows version is very bare-bones because they are no Windows Hatari developers.

Bob C
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