What should next month's (April 2008) theme platform be?

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Bill Loguidice
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You saw what we've been doing with the CDTV/CD32 thus far in the month of March 2008, so what platform would you like to nominate for April 2008? Let us hear your thoughts and opinions!

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Bill Loguidice
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Months
Mark Vergeer wrote:

The G7000 Odyssey 2, G7400 might also be a nice platform to talk a bit about in the Future. The intellivision idea sounds great aswell. May I introduce Vectrex to the list?

I have a great Odyssey2 collection and its another quirky, favorite platform of mine. The Odyssey line had a bit of better run in Europe than here in the US (we never received the semi-next gen enhanced version), so this would be a nice balance for that particular platform.

The Vectrex is another good one, though that was one of the recent Gamasutra articles and I feel like we'd be going over the same territory too soon. I obviously would want to do that eventually since it has become something of a legend, but much further down the line.

Mark Vergeer wrote:

I have a pretty accurate Colecovision emulation environment set up. I am able to borrow a Coleco from a local retroshop with a load of cartridges - I might actually buy it. So I can do some comparisons. I am able to check out the enhancements of various MSX_ports aswell in between real life things. But if others want to join in please do!

I have all of the Opcode games released thus far on cartridge, as well as several other top homebrews. I also have the 128-in-1 Multi-cart. Of course I'll probably mostly focus on the Adam for my part, since that's a bit more of a pain to appreciate via emulation. I think what my goal should be for next month to put as much focus on the Adam as possible and also put some focus on ColecoVision homebrews. That's probably where I can provide the most value for the month.
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Bill Loguidice
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Intellivision
Harmik wrote:

How about Intellivision for the month of May

Awesome system just awesome :)

I was considering it, but I just submitted our latest "A History of Gaming Platforms" article to Gamasutra (#5 of 6) and it happens to be on the Intellivision. I also just received the latest homebrew for the Intellivision, "Space Patrol" (which supports the ECS for enhanced sound). I don't know when the Gamasutra article will hit the public, but it's one of my favorite pieces. We can certainly consider the Intellivision for the month of May, because it is a rather fascinating platform, particularly when you factor in the long mainstream lifespan (second only to the Atari 2600 VCS), Intellivoice, two first party computer expansions and the extremely talented programmers on a very capable platform (as I state in the article - it may not be the most powerful pre-Crash system, but it could hold its own against any other platform in terms of audio-visuals when programmed properly)...

EDIT: I see that you said "May". Yes, that's likely a good choice. When it comes time towards the end of April to make the decision for the next month, that will be the first proposed platform...



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Mark Vergeer
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Emulation of most systems is doable

Emulation of most systems is very doable - me and Mr Custard have been working with various emulators for years on various platforms. Emulators won't provide exactly the same experience as working with the real thing and Bill luckily has a vast amount of hardware resources to his disposal to verify and get an indication of how accurate the emulation possibilities are.

The G7000 Odyssey 2, G7400 might also be a nice platform to talk a bit about in the Future. The intellivision idea sounds great aswell. May I introduce Vectrex to the list?

I have a pretty accurate Colecovision emulation environment set up. I am able to borrow a Coleco from a local retroshop with a load of cartridges - I might actually buy it. So I can do some comparisons. I am able to check out the enhancements of various MSX_ports aswell in between real life things. But if others want to join in please do!



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Harmik
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Intellivision

How about Intellivision for the month of May

Awesome system just awesome :)

Bill Loguidice
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Theme month stuff
Matt Barton wrote:

My caveat is that it needs to be something easy to emulate on modern PC's. I was unable to get a CD32 emulator working at all, so have been left unable to really contribute as much as I'd like. I still have plans for a few things, but it'd be far easier with something if I could review some games.

I still haven't tried to emulate the CDTV. I wonder if that would be easier than the CD32?

Emulating the ColecoVision on a variety of platforms is a no-brainer, as there's nothing particularly involved about the process like there is with something Amiga-based, so obviously that's a big plus for next month. All of the emulation options work well and ROMs are easy to get (I can even point you to sources for the latter). I believe there may even be a browser-based ColecoVision emulator like there is for the Apple II and there used to be for the Intellivision, among other systems, but I don't remember the link.

As for the other platforms Mark mentioned and the majority of other platforms from the long list we can cover, there are few, if any issues. Of course on some of the more obscure platforms, like let's say the APF MP1000 or Interact Personal Computer, it would probably make sense to combine two or more systems into one month to make up the difference. That might be our way around Mark's BBC and Archimedes suggestions - you and I would have a hell of a time trying to contribute to that, but if we teamed those up with one or more other low volume platforms, we'd definitely have a good month of coverage. Combinations would also help offset low volume systems with only a handful of things to talk about.

I suppose really the only goal of these theme months is to focus our coverage a bit rather than do random things that happen to pop up, like I usually do. It also helps us build up the archives...



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Matt Barton
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My caveat is that it needs

My caveat is that it needs to be something easy to emulate on modern PC's. I was unable to get a CD32 emulator working at all, so have been left unable to really contribute as much as I'd like. I still have plans for a few things, but it'd be far easier with something if I could review some games.

I still haven't tried to emulate the CDTV. I wonder if that would be easier than the CD32?

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Bill Loguidice
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Do we have a decision?

So I guess the consensus then is to do a combined ColecoVision/Coleco Adam month, with as much emphasis on the Adam as possible....



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Bill Loguidice
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OK for the future, but a few caveats

The only ones I would rule out would be the BBC and Archimedes, since I don't have access to either of those systems and have zero experience with them. We can save those for far down the line if you still want to do them. The other suggestions are fine by me. We have well over 150 platforms to choose from as well...

And it doesn't matter how much any of us contributes in a month. Even one entry should be sufficient and comments now and again. Some months will naturally have more stuff than others.

And yes, ColecoVision/Adam, SV-318/328, TI-99/4a, Tomy Tutor, MSX1, etc., were all very close to each other in regards to visuals and sound, particularly visuals. It was a very common and solid specification for the time. In fact, many of OpCode Games' recent homebrews for the ColecoVision on cartridge have been slightly enhanced ports of MSX1 games! (I own several)



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Mark Vergeer
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Coleco Adam is something I

Coleco Adam is something I have little experience with, I know it existed but it was not big in the Netherlands. I'll be having more of a low profile next month because of buying a house (in France), starting a new rotation which starts the final - little over - 6 months of my training as a psychiatrist. Settling in my new job will take some time as it is a new field of social psychiatry including lots of house calls, multidisciplinary stuff (police, other health care workers etc) including the field of acute psychiatric care and my love for psychiatric consultancy work in the general hospital.

But I might thow in a review or two of a colourful coleco game - comparing a particular port to the game on other systems. Coleco does have some commonalities with the MSX-1 standard and there are quite a few Coleco games that are indistinguishable from MSX games. What intrigues me is what the Coleco Adam Standard actually is and how does it compare to the MSX-1 standard?

Suggestions for future month-subjects:
-gp32 / gp2x fx100/fx200
-c64
- Atari 800
-atari ST
-Apple II / IIGs

or 6510/6502 CPU based home computers like Apple II, Atari 800 and c64 eh BBC too I believe.
or Z80 based home computers like MSX, Spectrum, Amstrad CPC

-Archimedes - UK!
-BBC - UK!
-ZX Spectrum - UK!
-MSX - MSX2 scene still going very strong in the Netherlands AND Brazil!
-original Xbox - rise and 'too early demise' = it was basically stopped dead in it's tracks / interesting home-brew scene
-Dreamcast - rise and fall / interesting home-brew scene



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Bill Loguidice
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Getting closer... Coleco Adam/ColecoVision sounding good
yakumo9275 wrote:

combining the coleco stuff would be cool. I only proposed it as I know nothing about it beyond word of mouth stuff.

I've always heard about it but never seen a real live working one or know what games on it are like or if it has built in basic etc.

-- Stu --

Sounds like a plan. It doesn't have built-in BASIC, but the BASIC provided on data pack is a virtual clone of Applesoft BASIC. The Adam is quirky as all hell and built like a toy company would build a computer, but on the flip-side, it has some great features and possibilities, as well as solid software, though a lot of it didn't see official release until it made it to other platforms.



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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

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