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Reply 40 of 80, by SpeedySPCFan

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keropi wrote:

I just got the kickstarter progress email - it seems MT-32 support wasn't the only thing that got canned, the intro and some maps also got removed. At least the extra maps will be available in the "full" digital version but it is my understanding that the intro will never be coded.
Way too many compromises for my taste... 😐

The extra maps should be in the 720k floppy, I think it was only the 360k that got them removed due to storage problems. The intro couldn't fit on either the 720k or 360k disc I believe, though I don't think it's a huge loss since it's part of the teaser on YT, and many of the stills made it into the manual.

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Reply 41 of 80, by SpeedySPCFan

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For people who backed the game: the digital download is available early! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/19730967 … os/posts/237560

Musician & music gear/game reviewer.

MIDI hardware: JD-990, SC-55, SC-880, SD-90, VL70-m, Motif ES, Trinity, TS-10, Proteus 2000, XK-6, E6400U

Reply 42 of 80, by Akuma

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keropi wrote:

I just got the kickstarter progress email - it seems MT-32 support wasn't the only thing that got canned, the intro and some maps also got removed. At least the extra maps will be available in the "full" digital version but it is my understanding that the intro will never be coded.
Way too many compromises for my taste... 😐

Everyone has probably seen this but, this genius "Benedikt Freisen" added a bunch of video modes:
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCx32lrBSNQ&f … youtu.be&t=2107)

  • Plantronics Colorplus 320x200x16, 640x200x4,620x200,16
  • CGA Monochrome 2 Color
  • EGA
  • Hercules

If the MT32 is not that much code, and imo very much worth to add to this gem of a game.
Could we ask him to implement it maybe with some financial incentive on top 😁 ?

Reply 43 of 80, by Jo22

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Wonderful news, thanks a lot! 🙂

So except for exotic video modes, such as Amstrad/Schneider PC1512, Olivetti M24, BBC Master 512, Sanyo MBC 555 , IBM PGC, 8514/A, TIGA and Mindset graphics
the game virtually covers all types of old video hardware.

Edit: Edited.
Edit: I forgot Hercules InColor. 😅
Along with M24, PC1512 it can be emulated in PCem/86Box. Master 512 is emulated by BeebEm 4.03.

Last edited by Jo22 on 2020-07-09, 11:15. Edited 2 times in total.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

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Reply 44 of 80, by keropi

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Akuma wrote on 2020-07-07, 10:44:

[...]
If the MT32 is not that much code, and imo very much worth to add to this gem of a game.
Could we ask him to implement it maybe with some financial incentive on top 😁 ?

sure but do we know if it's even possible ?
tbh I got the physical kickstarter release - it's nice and cool but I never actually played the game so far 😁

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Reply 45 of 80, by Jo22

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I second that - MT-32 support would be neat,
even if X3 was using the default instruments only (which are available on many GM devices) .

If not, maybe, just maybe, the extra special effects of the CM32L/LAPC-I do serve as an extra incentive to add support also.. 😉

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 47 of 80, by VileR

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Jo22 wrote on 2020-07-07, 12:28:

So except for exotic video modes, such as Amstrad/Schneider PC1512, Olivetti M24, BBC Master 512, Sanyo MBC 555 , IBM PGC, 8514/A, TIGA and Mindset graphics
the game virtually covers all types of old video hardware.

I don't know - the Amstrad PC1512 was much more common and less exotic than Plantronics video. Although I suspect that their respective graphics modes were almost equally under-used, except in things like GEM, paint packages, and such.

Machines like the Master 512, the Sanyo MBC-555, or the Mindset were only semi-compatible with the PC... so the game would probably need more extensive rewrites than just graphics code to run on those things.
If you're already including that sort of stuff, then why not ACT Apricots, FM-Towns, NEC APC III / PC-9801, Philips :YES, Tandy 2000, and so on 😉

But even in the "100% compatible" world, there's still a much much longer list of exotic hardware that one could theoretically support... Cordata (Corona Data System's) early monochrome 640x300 and 640x400 modes, the Sperry HT/PC's "super hi-res" 640x400 graphics, the Tecmar Graphics Master, Quadram's QuadColor I/II, various virtually-unused "super EGA" card-specific modes, and even IBM's own XGA/XGA-2, 'Image Adapter/A', or the Japanese PS/55.
So covering all types of old video hardware is an impossible mission - even Moraffware barely scratched the surface with their infamous start-up menus. 😁

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Reply 48 of 80, by WolverineDK

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Guy and gals, I must point something out. As far I am aware off, he is thinking of making it open source after some time sooner or later. Last time I saw one of his videos on the matter of his game. You can check out his videos on the subject on his youtube channel.

Reply 49 of 80, by Akuma

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keropi wrote on 2020-07-09, 10:26:

sure but do we know if it's even possible ?
tbh I got the physical kickstarter release - it's nice and cool but I never actually played the game so far 😁

According those these guys:

realnc wrote on 2018-12-17, 13:15:
Scali wrote:

MIDI files aren't very large, and a MIDI playback routine is only a handful of bytes.

Well, someone would need to make the MIDI files. That means composing a new, MT-32 specific soundtrack. If you have an AdLib specific soundtrack, you can't just "support" the MT-32. You actually need to compose new music specifically for it.

The 18 tracks are already made, so there is a path to obtain those files.
Track 01-09 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PT-ZeIk1iE8
Track 10-18 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZWHd6itkXU

(I think when you download the GOG version, you get MP3's.
So another way could be creating a mixed mode cd
Then add an option for cd-audio and send stop/play commands to cdplayer)

Reply 50 of 80, by Jo22

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VileR wrote on 2020-07-10, 00:30:
Jo22 wrote on 2020-07-07, 12:28:

So except for exotic video modes, such as Amstrad/Schneider PC1512, Olivetti M24, BBC Master 512, Sanyo MBC 555 , IBM PGC, 8514/A, TIGA and Mindset graphics
the game virtually covers all types of old video hardware.

Machines like the Master 512, the Sanyo MBC-555, or the Mindset were only semi-compatible with the PC... so the game would probably need more extensive rewrites than just graphics code to run on those things.
If you're already including that sort of stuff, then why not ACT Apricots, FM-Towns, NEC APC III / PC-9801, Philips :YES, Tandy 2000, and so on 😉

Fair enough, I agree that the Master 512 and Sanyo MBC-55x were indeed not fully IBM compatible. 😀
For example, the Master 512 used different colour schemes in CGA.
However, they each ran a PC DOS compatible DOS, had basic PC BIOS emulation and could do emulate CGA graphics (more or less).
The other platforms were indeed very exotic. I don't know much about the Tandy 2000, but the Robotron A7150 and EC 1834 surely were.
Although, they also had CGA compatibility in additon to proprietary video modes. And ran on DCP (Disk Control Program) which was like MS-DOS 3.2/3.3..

https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_7150
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/EC_1834

A7150
CGA
640x480 Pixel, 8 colours (maximum)

EC 1834
320 × 200 with 4 colours (CGA compatible)
640 × 200 monochrom
640 × 400 monochrom
640 × 480 with 16 colours from a palette of 4.096 colours (3x 4 bit)

I also agree what you said about the Schneider/Amstrad machine.
The PC1512 was one of the most popular PCs for a while, but likely more or less only in UK/EU.
I have no idea if whas popular in over seas. Hence I said "exotic".

If I had to name another oddball, I'd propably go for the Sharp MZ series of computers.
They are from Japan, but were popular in Europe for a while (in the late 70s/early 80s).
The MZ-5500 series could run some flavour of MS-DOS and could do graphics up to 640x480.

https://www.old-computers.com/museum/computer.asp?st=1&c=296

Edit: I forgot about the Victor Sirius 1 (Europe's first IBM PC w/ 800x400 res) and Alphatronic PC.. It had an optional 8086 card..
Anyway, I was just thinking out loud.. I didn't mean to be ungrateful.
I love games similar to Starlight and appreciate all the efforts so far.
The current state supports all popular systems. Minus PC1512 and MT-32, of course. 😁😉
Edit: Short explanation why the Amstrad PC1512 was mentioned several times:
The PC1512 was one of the cheapest and most feature-rich PC in Europe of the mid-late 1980s.
In some way or another, it was the "European Tandy".
Even though it lacked the wonderful 3-Voice Sound.
At least it had a volume knob.. 🙂

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 51 of 80, by VileR

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Jo22 wrote on 2020-07-10, 15:11:

Edit: I forgot about the Victor Sirius 1 (Europe's first IBM PC w/ 800x400 res) and Alphatronic PC.. It had an optional 8086 card..

Hmmm, hadn't heard about the Sirius 1 but apparently this was the Euro/UK version of the Victor 9000... and wasn't quite PC compatible either, but it seems to have an interesting connection the ACT Apricot mentioned in my last post.
ACT was the UK distributor for this machine, and a little while later they came out with their own Apricot - which was evidently based on the Sirius in some respects at least, since it had the same 800x400 hi-res mono graphics and even used the same system fonts. Wonder how deep the similarities actually are.

Anyway, thanks for the heads up on those other machines too - as you might remember I have my own ulterior motives for researching them, esp. in regards to display capabilities 😉

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Reply 52 of 80, by martinot

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SpeedySPCFan wrote on 2018-12-16, 00:12:

If you haven't already heard of Planet X3, it's a brand new MS-DOS strategy game, compatible with pretty much every DOS computer ever built with support for VGA and a majority of CGA display modes, and support for PC Speaker, Tandy, and AdLib sound systems using a custom sound engine with music built in a tracker.

The game's set to go gold in three weeks or so, and possibly release within 2 weeks digitally. You can see the last Kickstarter update here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/19730967 … s/posts/2370275

And the teaser here, which is the intro and gameplay footage at the end. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dvpMVJ7WGA

Seems like YouTube/Google has closed down the video or account. Any possibility that it can be uploaded again?

Reply 55 of 80, by Benedikt

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Akuma wrote on 2020-07-07, 10:44:
Everyone has probably seen this but, this genius "Benedikt Freisen" added a bunch of video modes: (https://www.youtube.com/watc […]
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Everyone has probably seen this but, this genius "Benedikt Freisen" added a bunch of video modes:
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCx32lrBSNQ&f … youtu.be&t=2107)

  • Plantronics Colorplus 320x200x16, 640x200x4,620x200,16
  • CGA Monochrome 2 Color
  • EGA
  • Hercules

If the MT32 is not that much code, and imo very much worth to add to this gem of a game.
Could we ask him to implement it maybe with some financial incentive on top 😁 ?

Where can I meet him? 😁

Kidding aside, there has been further progress since then, albeit not a lot.

Most importantly, the EGA version of the engine has had an experimental code path for accelerated VGA, all along, it's just commented out because it would need different text drawing and radar screen code.
With that completed and enabled, you could get VGA graphics even with the slowest PCs.

Then there's another unpublished engine variant for the 640x200x16 mode of the ATI "Small Wonder" Graphics Solution, as can be seen here.
That engine variant technically supports medium-res Tandy mode, i.e. 320x200x16, as well, but its LUT-based down-conversion of the 256-color artwork means that it's ugly.
And then I also explored to possibility to get it to run in a hacked CGA text mode, as well, just for funsies.

While I don't have any MIDI hardware and will therefore not be working on that, you'll be delighted to hear that someone else is working on General MIDI and MT-32 support, and that it's reportedly already working, albeit probably in a prototypical stage.

P.S.: I did not add CGA Monochrome 2 Color, just the remapping of 4-color CGA to four shades of gray. (only visible where the video hardware allows it)

Reply 56 of 80, by carlostex

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Benedikt wrote on 2020-07-20, 20:24:

While I don't have any MIDI hardware and will therefore not be working on that, you'll be delighted to hear that someone else is working on General MIDI and MT-32 support, and that it's reportedly already working, albeit probably in a prototypical stage.

That's wonderful news. Its amazing so many people contributing on Planet X3. I'm happy to have made a small contribution, fixing that INT29h bug.

For the sound department i would love for Innovation SSI support. But, much more difficult than GM and MT-32 as those are composed already.

In any case all great news!

Reply 57 of 80, by wiretap

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Unfortunately I didn't know about it during development, but I purchased it and loaded it up on my turbo XT not too long ago. It plays great, looks awesome and sounds awesome. Quick intro video in VGA mode. I still need to hook up my CGA/EGA CRT when I get some time. https://youtu.be/ce0eHgUOydI

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Reply 58 of 80, by Benedikt

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carlostex wrote on 2020-07-21, 00:04:

That's wonderful news. Its amazing so many people contributing on Planet X3. I'm happy to have made a small contribution, fixing that INT29h bug.

For the sound department i would love for Innovation SSI support. But, much more difficult than GM and MT-32 as those are composed already.

In any case all great news!

Innovation SSI support may or may not happen. The programming model is relatively similar to Adlib and Planet X3's soundtrack only makes use of three voices, anyway. Conversion at run-time seems feasible.
You might have noticed that I am building my own Innovation SSI replicas, so it's not unreasonable to assume that support in Planet X3 might be coming at some point in the future, but I am not going to promise anything, yet.

Reply 59 of 80, by carlostex

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Benedikt wrote on 2020-07-21, 11:46:

Innovation SSI support may or may not happen. The programming model is relatively similar to Adlib and Planet X3's soundtrack only makes use of three voices, anyway. Conversion at run-time seems feasible.
You might have noticed that I am building my own Innovation SSI replicas, so it's not unreasonable to assume that support in Planet X3 might be coming at some point in the future, but I am not going to promise anything, yet.

Yeah i'm aware of that clone. Looks very good. I really like how the SID sounds and its too bad that it wasn't used properly.

Recently i tried Bristlehog's AIL Innovation SSI driver and in some games it can sound quite good, even if the driver is not very advance and doesn't allow waveform changes on the fly, nor reprogramming ADSR envelope.

Listen to Legend of Kyrandia with Bristlehog's driver:

https://youtu.be/_0uUVfC7e94

I think it sounds beautiful, of course the main melody line is missing because of the 3 voice limitation. I often wonder if a "smarter" driver could eventually make that limitation less obvious but it seems something very complicated to do.

If Innovation SSI support ever happens for Planet X3 it would be the best sounding game with SID for DOS for sure.

I recently tried to use the DOS version of VICE emulator which claims the Innovation SSI will be used by the emulator for SID music but i haven't managed to get that to work. That would further justify using an SSI on a DOS computer.