Another issue (note I have now dropped the months and will release issues when and as I feel I have enough content)
In this issue we have the usual news items from the Commodore Scene around the word. In the news section we see amongst other things “CHANG'S ADVENTURE [ENHANCED]” an update to CHANG'S ADVENTURE. Yep the ENHANCED really did give the game away here, we also have 2 games reviews;
We have “Heroes of Midgard” that was released for SEUCK 2011 sideways scrolling competition; and “Diamond Hunt 2” a game released for the unexpanded VIC 20, well re-released as the original version was written in BASIC and the new version is 100% machine code.
This issue also has an in-depth interview with Chris (Kisiel) DEVELOPER OF “THE TURBO CARD” an accelerator card for the Commodore 64, however you will need a soldering iron and some patience to fit the device in your machine. So does this mean the end of the SCPU and the fighting with Maurice Randel? Well you really need to read the review to find out what the developer was thinking when he designed the project, and if it will send a nail into the SCPU.
Old-school Amiga musician – h0ffman – has released a new music disk with a 3 disk trackmo music disk with one hour of non stop music.
(the 70mb download includes all mods, plus 3 adfs plus mp3 of entire mix recorded from the Amiga)
Lifeschool over at Lemonamiga has interviewed Amiga Guru and ex Chief Engineer at Commodore - Dave "HazyDave" Haynie.
"You are welcome here today to bare witness to a brand new and exclusive interview with a hero of the Amiga scene - the legendary Dave Haynie. For those who don't know, Dave started on the Commodore 128, and continued through to the much heralded 'AAA' chipset- the successor to AGA. I took the opportunity to interview him." The website says
I have made an English version of the computer collection hint (you may want to use this.) I hope the translation is OK.
SCACOM Aktuell German issue 22 has been released. The issue has 62 pages, a new design, exclusive text about the Minimig AGA (FPGA Arcade) prototype and much more.
It will be the LAST ISSUE. Therefore the golden page 1.
GO65 the C65 emulator on C128:
NOTE: computer collection Vienna is the new project in new design. German and partly English, too. New Project site include card game and poster:
Have a look to SCACOM 22 (I think page 41 or near that) there is one more project that is not on the page: A 1565 prototype drive re-built in 3D. It may be produced in 3D printer technique once if costs are not too high,
Hope that's enough news for you.
Thanks and keep up the work,
Some minor bug fixes in this release and small updates; to the control issues have been implemented as well as NTSC compatibility. The release now also includes Docs for the game (these are actually now in the game at the start) and for the Editor, this has a separate Doc file, because the docs couldn’t be squeezed into the editor program. The docs for the editor are in a note and so are run as a program
Reviewed later in this issue of Commodore Free!
Club info is a German Commodore 16 / plus 4 disk magazine recently issue 123 has been released
A multi format Commodore File browser
Use the joy stick or the cursor keys to browse the directory, fire/return to load the selected program.
KISIEL latest hardware project for C64 is a 2Mhz speeder (or accelerator) for the C64. To use it you have to replace VIC and SID chips from the machine and put TDC in to socket. If you want to have 100% compatibility with software for C64 you also have to solder one wire to SHARP chip or leave it and use plenty of software which uses c128 mode on C64.
Demo of the project showing the speed increase
Some more information here
It's a sped up c64 new board (with SHARP on board) to 2MHZ.
one wire to SHARP to make turbo loaders compatible. Now I'm preparing short commercial lot, so anybody? See also thread here: http://www.amibay.com/showthread.php?t=18575
The price depend on your interest, It will be around 50 Euro (43 £) , as you see its 2Mhz only and runs on a C64c
TDC registers occupies area of $d02f - $d031.
$d02f (read only)
contains $f0 value.
$d30 (read write register)
Bits (3-7) - DMA control (reserved for TDC-F always zero)
Bit (2) - VIC IRQ bust control
'1' VIC IRQ controls possibility to use max. CPU clock. Set VIC IRQ to turn mode on and set $d019 to disable max frequency.
Bit (1) - max. frequency mode on TOP/Bottom border.
Bit (0) - 2 MHz mode without c128 screen bug.
In this CPU speed all instructions are twice faster than in normal mode with exceptions:
How to calculate speed?
For example STA $d020 takes 4 cycles in 1MHz=4ms, in 2Mhz mode it takes 2ms or 3ms.
3ms is then CPU write cycle is then VIC have AEC signal low so is not possible to write to VIC registers. No good? Compare it with 20MHZ speeder ;)
Command NOP takes 1ms and cycle exact routines are easer now.
In this mode CPU can do all instructions four times faster with the same exceptions as above.
Command STA $d020 takes from 1ms to 2ms, or in view of CPU from 4 cycles to 7 cycles.
Warnings in this mode:
$d031 (read write register)
Register read, hardware version ($D1 - version 1)
Register write, 8-bit covox output .
You may well have seen these before but while board I was looking on eBay and trawled this device
Here is the information take from the sellers comments
This adapter allows you to connect a Secure Digital memory card to an IDE interface (like the one present in the Amiga 600 and Amiga 1200). The SD card can be used just like any ordinary hard disk drives, this includes the installation of a (bootable) operating system.
The following articles have been added to the website of the French Amiga/Morph OS magazine Obligement (http://obligement.free.fr ) during the past months :
Article in English:
Rendezvous on http://obligement.free.fr for this nice reading.
All translations are welcome. Please contact David "Daff" Brunet for more info.
Mail Order Monsters is a three piece music and video performance group, celebrating the sound of the Commodore 64 computer. They use a range of (custom) hardware to produce the SID sound like multiple keyboards and percussion controllers, Midibox, HardSID, Messiah, and real Commodore 64 computers. In total they use 23 SID chips (6581) on stage. They will do a live show at the Artprize 2011 in Ah Nab Awen Park, Michigan, United States on 21, 23 and 30 September.
REGENERATOR 1.2 by n0stalgia
Regenerator is - an interactive dissembler for C64 binaries. Regenerator will load any standard C64 .PRG file (or VICE snapshot) and disassemble it. There are a few options you can choose to change the output and a few tools to make the output look better and more useful to programmers. Although other tools do the same this one is designed to be easier to use.
You will need .net 3.5 (or 4.0) runtime. Download it from Microsoft’s website. http://www.microsoft.com/net/download
Regenerator makes files that are compatible with 64tass. However you might need to uncheck the "Use Illegal Opcodes" option since 64tass chokes on illegal opcodes
AmigaOne X1000 booting
AmigaOS4.1 Update 3
News from Trevor Dick of A-Eon
Chris Follett, AmigaKit's lead technician, has produced a quick video of the AmigaOne X1000 booting to AmigaOS4.1 Update 3. Chris apologized for the quality, but he only had time to run off a quick video in between setting up and testing Nemo 2.1 motherboards. He has promised to produce another video showing AmigaOS4 running various demos when he has more time.
AmigaOS4.1 Update 3 booting on AmigaOne X1000
Although you need to be authorised to see the video
News from amigabounty.net
Thomas Frieden has posted an update to the status of porting Firefox to Amiga OS 4.1.
I'm aware that we have been quiet lately, but don't worry, there's been work going on, and Timberwolf is making progress. The 4.0 code base of Firefox now fully builds and a prototype implementation of the new rendering code was implemented, based on the old rendering code.
Instead of "fixing" the old code, though, we opted for a complete rewrite, for a couple of reasons. First of all, the old code became really bad with time (the usual thing that happens with experimental code). Secondly, re-implementing it all would get rid of any artefacts in the code that were still necessary in the 3.5 source tree. Basically, it's a clean start.
With the information gathered in the previous effort, it only took me some few hours to rewrite the skeleton for the widgets module. This does not include the rendering code yet. This will be up next, right after fixing a few outstanding bugs that cause crashes on exit.
In the process of porting the 4.0 base, we also ported a new version of sqlite. We'll release that in the near future (when I find the time, if you need it up front, drop me a mail).
I'm usually quite bad at predicting how long things will take (Actually, precisely "when it's done", of course), but I hope to have the rendering code in the course of the next two to three weeks (depending on how much time I have for working on the project). We will release a new pre-release version as soon as we have something that can be remotely used.
We also wish to take the opportunity to thank all of those that supported us, and apologize for the long stretches of silence. We're still at work, and although progress is slow, we'll eventually get there.
Created by: tfrieden
A new and better version of Sidplay64 is out.
Now with directory browsing for these devices:
( Works best with JiffyDOS and/or a fastload cartridge. )
Grab it here:
XSidplay version 2.1.1 is now available for Linux system:
The 2.1.x version was a big step over the previous one as now we passed from QT3 to QT4.
only ALSA and SDL audio library are supported
Next versions will have multiple run-time sid library support (so you can use the best you prefer) and even PSID v3 support.
NOT NEWS but found this while looking for something else
Drum Studio (Aka Drumstudio) - Version v2.80A - 1990
Copyright (c) 1990 Mark Wilson - Credits Mark Wilson [code] - Gez [DigiBoost consultant]
Quite an unusual job for the SID: samples.
Drum Studio is a simple step sequencer based on 32 steps patterns. All classics functions are here : copy/paste to easily duplicate patterns, clear a voice or the whole voices, tempo in BPM (would be nice to compare this BPM cycles to a classic Drum Machine like Roland TR-505...) and a simple but effective song mode where you can chain patterns.
7 sampled sounds are ready to bang : kick, snare, 4 basses and a vocal sample!
F1 Stop sequence
F3 Change sequence
F5 Record sequence
F7 Play song
<- Disc operations
R/S Clear both voices
C= Clear only record voice
SPC Delete real time event
RETURN Output through: SID/SFX
, Copy into the copy buffer
. Copy out of the copy buffer
Link to D64 image
Q. Please introduce yourself to our readers
I’m mechanical engineer with interesting hobby: Commodore C64 ;)
Q. Can you give a little history about yourself and how you came across the Commodore brand of machines
I received a Commodore C64 in 1991, but my love story started earlier. I’ve been a ham club member (SP2ZBE) and I used C64 for rtty and sstv. During this time the commodore c64 was an expensive item and so was the 1541 disk drive. I bought a drive in 1993 and this is really where my story with c64 hardware began.
First I made an 8-bit digitiser, after that I made a 256KB DRAM expansion clone, IDE (16-bit) connector and SRAM based Basic/Kernal expansion. All of these projects I call my C64+, it’s actually a modded C64 with some extra features; such as a Compact Flash reader, 12bit PWM sound. Sadly I gave up c64 programming and developing in 1998! However I’ve now gone back “into business” so to speak ; starting in 2004 with an Action Replay clone in ATF1502.
Q. Can you explain the TURBO CARD and what you envisaged for the project?
TDC is simple it’s a turbo card with some additions such as covox and dual sid. In contrast to the SuperCPU this card tweaks the c64 board not only CPU. The main difference is of course speed, in TDC you can tweak the CPU for maximal 4MHz but the efficiency of this tweaking is better than the SCPU.
In the SuperCPU you have a CPU running with 20MHz but FSB (front side Bus) speed of C64 is 1MHz, in TDC the FSB is four times faster! If you compare 20Mhz timings in 3d library’s on this page http://www.ffd2.com/fridge/lib3d/index.html you will see what that efficiency means to the machines speed. For example if one small object takes 7,7 fps (frames per Second)in 1Mhz mode, on the SCPU it should run 20 times faster; so it would be about 154fps ,but the result is only about 91fps. In TDC the CPU runs in bad lines. In 1Mhz mode the VIC takes 40 cycles in every bad lines, but you have 126 cycles in each line in 2Mhz mode. I think its good news for coders ;)
Q. When was the project started, and who was involved in the project
The project was started in 2010 with a little help from my friends. For the TDC project I asked for the help from Data/Tropyx and Raf/VTE. Data helped me with testing and over clocking of the Commodore motherboard. Testing was very simple; and was achieved by changing a crystal on Mother Board. Raf gave me information about C128 in turbo mode with some testing (e.g. how works SID in this mode)
Q. With the project were you looking at compatibility or more looking for what NEW software would use the card for
Actually it was Both!
TDC can work with new and old software. All software that uses a C128 in C64 mode can be used in TDC “native” mode. The second option is turbo switch; with this option set you can speed up any programs (demos, games) by simply pressing the “TURBO" button.
Q. Do you have a working version now? Is there a demo of the device maybe a YouTube video or similar showing the machine,
Yes, I have four working versions of TDC, one is TDC-F (Spartan2 on board) and three TDC-L (XC95144 on board). The first one I’ve used for testing and programming lots of modules as colour changer, display list, DMA, bresman line drawing etc. I've uploaded many movies of demos through the Internet but nothing on YouTube. For example here http://www.megaupload.com/?d=3JNQTZJG
Q. Have you had much feedback and pre orders?
I’ve received feedback from polish c64 demo scene freaks; I think this is all the feed back I have received at the moment. I do however have a few pre orders. Hardware tweaking on Commodore systems is not popular as is on ATARI machines.
Q. Will the Turbocard have an on/off switch for compatibility?
No, but TDC have three pre-set on board from slow, medium to fast which you can use with turbo switch mode. The difference between these settings are compatibility; for example FAST mode is made for normal speed disk access, medium and slow are made for turbo access.
Q. Can I speed up some programs like GEOS? (I am thinking here about the screen updates) will a driver be created or needed.
I think a special driver is not needed, although I haven’t tried GEOS with the board.
Q. The SCPU (SuperCPU) device can be flicked on and off during various operations will this device be the same IE allowing certain parts of the program to be "speeded up" while other parts run at normal speed without blowing up the commodore 64
In turboswitch mode speeding up routines is done automatic. For example if CPU is doing FLI routine TDC slows down, if the machines is de-crunching or vector parts calculation TDC can speed up the CPU.
Q. What about demos with music! will they still play the music at normal speed/time or will the whole machine have to be speeded up something like hitting the turbo button on an emulator like vice for example.
SID and VIC on TDC board are still running at 1MHz speed, There are no problems with sound or the screen display; even when you use turbo mode for music or demos. Also there is No flicker on the c128 and no sound juddering etc.
Q. What about other programs that have 'slow' display ? like some of the early 3d games
No problem in turbo switch mode.
Q. And of course will it work with things like the various Doom clones MOOD etc.
Yes it’s the same program as other doom parts from C64 demos.
Q. Any compatibility issues with JiffyDOS, SD2iec 1541-Ultimate , or other cartridges like action relay etc.?
I’ve not tested 1541U because I don’t have this card; However I’ve tested TDC with older cards like Black Box Action Replay, Geo Action. I think TDC is compatible with SD2IEC and JiffyDos.
Q. I know there are 2 versions 2Mhz and 4Mhz , why not just one version that is switchable to with the positions Off/2/4 wouldn’t this simplify the design/ production
CPU in C64 was designed to run at 3MHz clock, 4MHZ mode is possible with $01 register problem. Access to the internal register is too slow, so you can’t change banks in 4Mhz mode, you have to do it before you switch 4Mhz mode on. Because of this you can’t use turbo switch mode with a speed of 4Mhz.
Q. Will this be a hand soldered project or commercially manufactured device
Hand soldered with hot air. It’s only few cards.
Q. Will the device be DIY hobbyist creatable, by this I mean will you give all the schematics and information needed for someone to hand build one.
No, it won’t be open project in this point of time. You can ask me about it later though;)
Q. You have said the device will retail for around 50 Euros is this now the final price.
For Amibayers I’ve set this price as maximum; So it is 50EUR plus some extra costs for shipping. I’ll try to sell this device on eBay (one piece) and allegro (one piece) for advertising and see how it goes.
Q. How will our reader be able to obtain the device
I think best place at the moment is Amibay.
Q. are you working with any coders to create demos and or games specifically for the device
At beginning I’ve asked Fenek/Arise and Data/Tropyx for beta testing, both are coders; but Fenek recently left c64 scene. I’ve asked Mr. Wegi for help, but he said that he had to move from Poland and he had no time (Silesia Party 5 is coming). Now I only have one beta tester. So I expect I will only receive programs from him.
Q. How big a market do you see for the device
I think is not big, c64 users are not open for modding; but I’m going to make 10-20 devices. It’s not a large amount but I have to judge the market.
Q. Will you be looking at any updates to the device or maybe to produce a SCPU clone
Hm, I’ve lost lots of money in all my projects, so for now it’s enough for me to have the device working and in a saleable format. However a SCPU clone could be made in TDC-F so everything is possible, who knows :)
Q. do you have any other projects you are currently working on at the moment
Yes, It’s secret but some people are dreaming about it ;)
Q. Do you have any final comments you would like to add
I’m proud that Commodore Free Magazine wants to make an interview with me.
Thanks guys for your attention, all the best. If you want to meet me or watch my toys live, please visit Silesia Party 5 in Poland (21-23 October 2011) contact persons from UK are Booker and Conrad (CSDB).
“grab the diamonds and escape through the tunnel; avoid the monsters who are out to get you; use your caltrops to stop a monster in their tracks; beware the skull and bones .; one touch will kill you; “
The loading screen is impressive, and you can’t help but love the Vic it’s a special machine and often underrated by many users. Ahem rant over I will continue.
So with the loading over we have a brief instruction screen and are asked to press fire to start the game. Pressing the fire button then leads us into the game.
We start; unsurprisingly at level 1, I always find this is a good place to start a game! Just for completeness then; the idea of the game, in case you didn’t get it from the brief instructions is to collect
These items a white arrow with 3 dots on top
Avoid these guys (they change shape randomly per level but are always blue)
And don’t walk into these (yellow skulls)
And navigate to the exit hole that looks like this (a black hole shape)
Of course if you’re reading the text version of the magazine these images won’t be helpful, sorry but the text descriptions may be useful.
Moving around the game is a very jerky affair, our man has the option to drop some “gunk” to stop the baddies following him, (although you have a limited amount of said gunk so use it wisely) but the movements of the man and the baddies are so jerky and very surreal. If you blink to hard they have moved from one side of the screen to the next (well maybe a slight exaggeration there).
Apparently this game is a “learning” experience; and a re-write of a game written in basic some years ago; and has now been revamped by the coder into a full machine code program. I suppose as it’s a first attempt at machine code we can’t be to hard on he writer.
The game does get confusing; for example it took me some time to find an exit for level 2, things all sort of blur into each other, with the black rocks merging with the black hole. Maybe a better idea would have been to have the word EXIT in a different colour to stand out more from the rest of the screen, its more of a frustration than a game playing experience as the “baddies” seem to be able to move faster than our hero and with the jerky movements its really hard to gain any real joy from the game play.
You don’t need to collect all the diamonds to exit the level, in fact you don’t need to collect any but then you wont receive any points, and just progress to the next level were the gameplay becomes harder. All the levels seem to be randomly created and it wasn’t long before this happened.
stuck behind a wall of trees with no way to move out
Sound is minimal. Some sounds and a small melody plays on your death, during the game you can here clicks as your hero moves left right etc. and there are some sounds on your collision with “the bad guys” that’s about all though.
I can’t say it’s a game I would go back to, (although I have played it now a number of times! The game is sound just the implementation needs working on)
Animation is quite minimal and the whole game feels like an old type in listing from the past.
Anyway here is a picture of level 2, can you spot the exit ?
Here is another level with the exit and our man about to jump down it
I think the game needs a little refining; the idea is neat (although not original)
I did so want to give more in the scores department especially as this is a coding exercise; I don’t want to put the developer off, and with so little memory on the unexpanded Vic, managing anything can be an achievement sometimes. However; I have to score in line with the other releases reviewed in C= Free
A good effort just needs refining
Another SEUCK 2011 competition entry, This time we have a game called “Heroes of Midgard”.
If you have ever started to play a SEUCK game and longed for some instructions, then your longing and yearning are over; for this game has a DOC file downloaded within the Zip image. The file has been created in Ms Word format; so you will need a compatible viewer to read it. Still it’s better than nothing and has pictures so couldn’t be created realistically as a text file. The DOC file even has a short story to help you along and get you in the mood for medieval action.
On an alternate world, where myth and reality collide …
The peaceful nation of Malexheim has been invaded by the monstrous legions of Hel, goddess of death and war. Though vastly outnumbered, the brave citizens raise an army to repel this abominable incursion, and then to advance into the foul region of Niflheim and strike at the very heart of Hel’s empire.
The game has two modes of combat, and these are Campaign phase with scrolling background and seige phase where you have a static background or if yo prefer a still screen.
The game has three levels of action and these are divided into two distinct phases as stated above, the interesting use of terrain is well implemented with various things that slow you down or block your way, you can for example walk through water but it’s slower than going over the bridge etc.
Booting the game up gets quite exciting, again the Tape version has the loading screen for SEUCK competition and some loading music, to tide you along until the game actually starts.
Although the title screen doesn’t really set your heart beat racing it’s the usual SEUCK static screen
The D64 image just has one file "midgard data .i" prg, running this gets you to; as you expect the title screen and ready for action.
Don’t let this put you off, especially if you read the DOC text file!
Music is interesting on the title screen, sort of medieval and electronic mix of Drums and warbles and a fat pulse melody playing. I quite like it when it breaks down to a pulsing beat then the lead comes in, heck you need to listen to understand. Quite nice music let’s leave it there.
The In game sounds are minimal as you could expect from a SEUCK
The game opens with our troops leaving the castle and an order to battle, then we are shown the harsh realities of war with invaders setting fire to vast areas of maps, thus causing mayhem no doubt they will be stealing vast quantities of local ale and coins of the realm as well.
After what seems like an age we are taken to a siege it’s at this point my skills with the joystick and fire button fall down and I am left for dead by the attacking troops.
An interesting SEUCK game and a grand concept, it’s a mad idea to try and create a SEUCK from such an idea, and for me it worked really well. Graphically (as far a SEUCK) goes its pretty good, with some nice animations and movements.
The game seems to cover a large range of attackers including zombies, witchcraft, vampires and orcs.
It’s a very good effort indeed; and again could warrant a full commercial release. Although my skills are quite poor I do still find myself going back to the game just to advance a little further.
(I have sort of weighted the overall score into its favour)
Working within the limitations of SEUCK (and this is the main problems really; not the implementation) it’s a good game, well thought out with good animation and game play, worth of a download.
The SEUCK 2011 competition has now finished and the results are shown below
And to be honest its how I would have scored the game’s myself, although not sure why Richard decided to enter himself with a fake entry, still it kept people on their toes (erm I think).
|Pos||Name of game||Author||Score|
|1||Forgotten Forest||Alf Yngve||61|
|2||Heroes of Midgard||Anthony Burns||53|
|3||Action Def||Christian Siege||40|
|5||Missile Madness||Alf Yngve||37|
|6||Escape from the Annoying Chavs||Joshua Green||17|
|7||Deff-Ender (This was actually a fake entry to surprise gamers)||Pav Loda (Richard/TND)||39, but has been disqualified|