retrograming

7

BeatHead (Atari, Unreleased - prototype ROM and hardware dated 1993)

Bobinator introduced me to this one a while ago - I don’t know what Early-mid ’90s Atari’s artists were on, but I seriously want some so I can work this sorta weirdness into my own stuff. This kind of thing was pretty typical of their games from the period, for how weird it might seem. 

The hardware this one runs on is extremely peculiar - on boot, it displays the message “Stella on Steroids”. “Stella” was Atari’s internal codename for the Atari 2600 VCS… and it doesn’t seem like there’s any direct connection between BeatHead’s hardware and the 2600 VCS. A simple developer in-joke?

Two other hardware-related factoids worth mentioning: BeatHead appears to use a custom developed CPU known as the ASAP… and I can’t find anything else on it. Also, Arcade-History notes that the GPU doesn’t work with sprites at all and instead uses a bitmap of sorts - extremely strange, for something that came out this late.

Interestingly, the hardware mentioned seems to have only ever been used for BeatHead - nowhere else on System-16 is ASAP-powered hardware mentioned.

5

Blast from the past. Bio-Hunter Sheba.

So this was my first attempt at what would eventually become Blade Kitten many years later. I really, really wanted to make a SNES/Megadrive anime style console game. Unfortunately there was even less of an audience for that stuff then than there is now.

I remember the logo outlines were created in Corel Draw 3 then with a bit of futzing around I got it from PC to Amiga (there was some software that allowed external Amiga floppy drives to read PC format disks) then I added the fills and gradients in Deluxe Paint 4.5 (My weapon of choice)

The grassy hills tileset and some of the monsters ended up getting used in Zombie Wars in 96. And the sign pretty much ended up as the design for the signposts in the TY series. I hoard my ideas pretty well.

4

A République, les jeux avant, les emmerdes après…

Ils ont été des gosses. On l’oublie trop souvent. Aujourd’hui, ils sont proprios ou gérants de boutique, tous vendeurs de jeux vidéo sur le boulevard Voltaire dans le quartier de République. Sur ces quelques centaines de mètres du XIème arrondissement de Paris, on ne s’appelle que par son prénom et, par moment, on se lance des regards comme au Far West. Depuis qu’Internet existe, leur réputation s’est bloquée sur le mot “voleurs”. Vendeur de jeux vidéo en 2014 n’est sans doute pas le job qu’ils imaginaient en jouant à la Super Nintendo ou même à la première PlayStation.

La suite de l’article ici

vimeo

Just one of the musical, “walking through the backdrops” montages from the Super Mario Bros. anime. See more here.