Following my recent fix of a crack-intro I was asked by a couple of people how to go about restoring missing color RAM data?
The short answer to that is: that’s easy if you have the right tools 🙂
Now I am not saying that this doesn’t involve guess work, because it does indeed, but what I am trying to say is that the problem is orders of magnitude simpler if you use a tool that provides a strict separation of the color RAM and video RAM data. There are certainly a zillion editors out there that do, but I used my own home-brew version that I coded when I first started learning assembly, many years ago.
The GUI was inspired by Saracen Paint, which I had only seen on the Italian edition of Zzap!64, so I take no credit for it but for the lack of helpful information.
Fixing color RAM data in my own picture editor
When working on uninitialised color RAM data in the editing pane on the right all I needed to do was to hit SHIFT+3 until I had the most appropriate value there, based on surrounding areas and the overall design.
This approach ensured that color RAM data, and color RAM data only, was impacted by the restoration process. That is not necessarily the case in a generic editor, e.g. with common fill tools that were designed for a more generic case and implement color reduction strategies that can alter surrounding pixels.
Signing off until next time!
I was looking at Level 6 design files for LN2 this evening when I spotted that there’s also another design issue at this level.
This is the room where the rope can be collected. Have a look at the table right under the window:
Design issue in LN2 – Level 6
It appears that the table is misplaced and part of it goes through the wall. I believe this is due to an accidental setting of the mirroring property of the object. Here’s how I think it should have been:
Design issue in LN2 – Level 6 (fixed)
Other mistakes I commented on in the past:
One day I will surely get all these design issues sorted and release an “improved” version 🙂
The Commodore 64 crack intro I fixed today is connected to one of the crack intros I like the most (the one that was written by Roy of Dynamix for North East Importers). The intro I fixed was written by Radar of Arcade: that’s the same person using a different handle. The other connection between these two intros is about the fonts used for text and top and bottom of the play area:
Arcade intro – original version
The intro written by Radar suffers a number of issues, of which 4 were really annoying, as per below image:
Arcade intro – original version with noted issues
Those issues are:
- a bug with the pattern repetition of the background in the play area (top and bottom)
- uninitialised color RAM at the top of the logo
- flickering on PAL
- late screen mode change (the wrong video RAM data is fetched)
I finally found some time to fix those issues within the code and data so here’s how the crack intro looks like in all of its restored beauty 🙂
Arcade intro – fixed
There are a couple of gfx glitches (blank lines) within the fonts for the upper border, but I think these are worth keeping: beauty is not about perfection 🙂
Finally, there are graphic elements in memory that are not used in the intro, such as a set of overlaid sprites that read “radar” and a set of sprites meant for showing player lives and score. I will try and figure out whether these were meant to be used or not. It is possible that the intro got messed up during its production and/or a work stage was used instead of the final one. It’s unlikely but worth a look 😉
I was asked a few times whether there’s a way to donate me some money for my work, especially after I implement change requests to my software as requested by its users. Historically I have dismissed the topic, but I’ve recently received multiple requests to take donations so I decided to provide receive addresses for Dash and Bitcoin.
Please feel free to use the receiving addresses under my new Donate page for donations. Thank you in advance 🙂