AuthorTopic: [WIP] [C+C] Pixel Pirate in Bits of Eight  (Read 28140 times)

Offline hawken

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[WIP] [C+C] Pixel Pirate in Bits of Eight

on: January 24, 2015, 03:07:48 pm
I'm just getting started on this, following this as a guide http://noelberry.ca/nes on hardware limitations, and going for some extended features with MMC5 chip (making 16,384 different tiles available per screen rather than only 256, and allowing each individual 8x8-pixel background tile to have its own color assignment instead of being restricted to one color set per 2x2 tile group)

The waves infront of the posts here are sprites.

The only unfaithful constraint is that I can't pull tiles from rom and colour them on the fly, so tilesheets will probably be larger with duplicates to emulate palette shifting.

Here's a shot of the game running, some videos here: http://hawkenking.tumblr.com/




(the green waves in this sheet is just for reference in the editor, those are swapped out)

The pirate sprite uses 2 palettes which probably isn't going to leave much variation for other sprites.

Any feedback or complains about me not being pure enough are gladly received!
« Last Edit: March 02, 2015, 10:07:21 am by hawken »
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Offline ptoing

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #1 on: January 24, 2015, 04:10:22 pm
OK, the lots of tiles and the 8x8 colour thing is ok, if you assume known hardware addage. You can only have 4 tile palettes though, 3 colours each + 1 shared bg colour.

You used a funky palette. http://bisqwit.iki.fi/utils/nespalette.php will give you the most physically accurate NES palettes to date. And they are way less subtle than what you have.

Please do not post upscaled stuff with blur, since that will make crits harder.

I made an edit, where I reconstructed it from your tilesheet and adjusted the palette:

This is your tiles without any sprites. You can see I added the 4 palettes into the image, just to make them clear.


And here is what you could do without any sprites, but it would need a lot more tiles, for the animation.


Or you could do it with a raster split where from the top of the water surface you set the palette so that white is the bg and you can use just white in all the palettes as a wave overlay.


For this to work without changing the palette back at the bottom of the wave overlay youwould also have to edit some stuff to not look weird. Such as the reflections on the lighter beams, the barnacles and the single pixel corners on the crates.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline hawken

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #2 on: January 25, 2015, 05:48:17 am
Hey ptoing thanks for the input! Some really great ideas here, especially about the raster split, I'll have to look in to the limitations of using these, still need to think about the hud and how to handle 8 way scrolling. I'm basing a lot of the planning on what I see possible in Kirby and other later titles.

For the palette, I tried to use that tool but the .pal file won't open in pixen. Asesprite, PyxelEdit and photoshop can't read .pal files. If anyone has a photoshop readable .aco that would be fabulous. Also noticing this is NTSC ppu output - I think PAL was brighter? (I'm from the UK  ;D)


Sorry for the crappy screengrab before. Output from Tiled.

I think for now I'll give your raster split idea a shot, theres no real limit on tiles but I'll try to stick to palette hardware limitations.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2015, 05:50:36 am by hawken »
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Offline Angelonias

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #3 on: January 25, 2015, 09:52:06 am
Use PrtSc(Print Screen) when you find a pallet you desire then paste it on any of the programms you use. You don't have to download .pal files.

Offline hawken

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #4 on: January 25, 2015, 10:18:19 am
bit more progress on the base tiles for the tileset, I screengrabbed the .pal maker website. Went for something with a tiny bit more saturation than the base settings.



The background is split from the waves down, using 13 colours per split.

Please let me know if you can see any tiles that break the colour rules! Any comments welcome.
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Offline ptoing

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #5 on: January 25, 2015, 03:39:04 pm
The tiles where the planks of the pier are broken and the bit where the ship hits the water surface (tile with the dither on it) are too many colours.

Not sure if I like the dither on the bg, I liked the simpler older version better. The ship looks great though, reminds me of Gimmick!
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Gil

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #6 on: January 26, 2015, 11:46:35 am
The ship is a winner in any case. I assume you did it last? If so, you're just starting to explore this design and the best is yet to come :). Keep trucking!

Offline hawken

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate platformer game - Strict NES emulation

Reply #7 on: January 26, 2015, 05:04:21 pm
Thanks Gil!

After doing a bit of digging, and asking around on the NESDEV forums, they think splitscreen palette swapping is going to be too hard. So I have resumed ptoing's original suggestion of just using lighter shades as waves and hoping for the best.

here's some current progress (always seems like I need more tiles!!)





Would you guys say this is too much detail or not enough (or just enough?) I want this to look "late NES" but not SNES or any other platform.
(shown here without crates as they are a destructible item, not yet decided how to implement so taken out of tiles.)

« Last Edit: January 27, 2015, 09:09:52 am by PixelPiledriver »
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Offline surt

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate Platformer - late NES style

Reply #8 on: January 27, 2015, 11:59:01 am
Ship is pretty awesome.

Had a goat an edit of the rest:

Mainly removed dither, also aligned palettes to attribute grid, drop water edge so don't need a separate water edge tile for every material, tried to give a bit more depth.
It is my understanding that dither on NTSC can get rather ugly plus less dither is generally better.

Offline hawken

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Re: [WIP] [C+C] Pirate Platformer - late NES style

Reply #9 on: January 28, 2015, 01:30:54 am
Thank you surt! I came across your NES tile dump recently and it's a really fascinating body of work.

A lot of food for thought here, I like how you have made it so there are less wave tiles to deal with, this is actually a point of contention with the engine I am using, as each 8x8 tile needs to be replaced by a special setup if it is animated.

I'm not really sure what you mean by attribute grid, care to elaborate?
Black in the green palette really does help but not sure if I can afford it. Current palette limit below:


I like the depth aspect (wasn't this called 2.5D back in the day?). In the early stages still, so it's something I'm going to try and implement. It does create a lot of work though and I had cut it out of another project before.

As for dithering... On PAL CRT's 1px horizontal lines flicker like crazy, you can't win them all. The chances are slim that this will find it's way to a CRT so it really does come down to preference of style.

Towards the end of the life cycle of the NES, games used a lot of black and dithering (batman anyone?). I'm not really going for the black look, although I do like and appreciate your "tile-tennis"!

I'm totally going to steal the hanging vegetation technique you did!!  ;D
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 01:43:43 am by hawken »
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