The Bard's Tale for iOS and its use of emulation

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Bill Loguidice
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As I mentioned in another thread, The Bard's Tale (2004 version, the comedy action RPG) for iOS: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-bards-tale/id480375355?mt=8 , also contains the first two original The Bard's Tale games from the 80s, with the third on the way (and maybe even the rest in the series). It's a steal of course at $5.99, and supposedly there's an Android version on the way. Anyway, there has been some question as to the versions of the older games that they included, and I'm happy to say that it's the Apple IIgs versions, so you get quality visuals and sound versus what you would have gotten with an 8-bit version (or even on the PC). Control is reasonable, with your finger acting as the mouse pointer and the ability to go full screen or bring up the virtual keyboard. You can see all that in the screen captures from my iPad 2 below. I don't know how well it works with the new iPad's mega resolution...

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (1 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (2 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (3 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (5 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (6 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (7 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (9 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (10 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (11 of 12)

The Bard's Tale for iOS showing the Apple IIgs emulation subsection (12 of 12)

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Bill Loguidice
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The Bard's Tale III is

The Bard's Tale III is finally available as part of the package via an update (free), though it too is the superior Apple IIgs version, not the PC version: http://www.inxile-entertainment.com/news/2012/05/29/inxile-updates-bards...

EDIT: BT III is in fact the PC DOS version, unlike the first two games in the package...

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Bill Loguidice
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Not that I can see
Paul H wrote:

Do the emulated originals support save-state features or do you have to save using the emulated disk drive. It's been many years since I played Bard's Tale III and I can't remember if it supports saving mid-dungeon. This might be a good game for me to play in short bursts here and there.

I have not played it enough to know definitively, but saving a party in the original Bard's Tale seems to just leave it there for next time. I don't see any save state options otherwise. It appears to be straight up running in an emulator, with no ability to get at the emulator options. I also hate that in order to access the instructions or map, you need an Internet connection...

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Paul H
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iPad of Fate

Do the emulated originals support save-state features or do you have to save using the emulated disk drive. It's been many years since I played Bard's Tale III and I can't remember if it supports saving mid-dungeon. This might be a good game for me to play in short bursts here and there.

Bill Loguidice wrote:

What's interesting is that the super resolution of the iPad 3 could very well present the same issue, though being only a 10" screen size might mitigate that issue somewhat. I know the Ultima IV developer (I'm still a beta tester) is having some visual "blurriness" issues on the new iPad because of the extreme resolution.

Strange, iPad 3 has exactly double the resolution of the earlier models so for sprite based graphics it should be a simple 2x blow-up and look identical.

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Bill Loguidice
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Yep, it's a problem
clok1966 wrote:

that first Character Screen really tells you something about the past and RPG's... transfer characters from Wizardry!, Ulitma III..., gmes from other companies! Wont see that today. I hope the Android version comes out, i may just get it. Looks like a match made in heaven.. yhe tablets may jst be the Perfect platform for old games. Today's PC have HUGE screens and playing them in a window just feels wrong to me, and blowing up full screen is .. ugly to put it nicely. The tablets screeen and keyboard make it all look natural almost, like it belongs that way.

I agree, I have a huge issue with giant, blocky pixels of old games running on my PCs, even though they have a modest resolution of 1920x1080. That will only get worse as resolutions increase. It's not so much I mind "poor" graphics - I obviously don't - it's just that after a certain point it becomes really hard to see things when you're talking an extreme multiple of its original resolution.

What's interesting is that the super resolution of the iPad 3 could very well present the same issue, though being only a 10" screen size might mitigate that issue somewhat. I know the Ultima IV developer (I'm still a beta tester) is having some visual "blurriness" issues on the new iPad because of the extreme resolution.

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clok1966
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that first Character Screen

that first Character Screen really tells you something about the past and RPG's... transfer characters from Wizardry!, Ulitma III..., gmes from other companies! Wont see that today. I hope the Android version comes out, i may just get it. Looks like a match made in heaven.. yhe tablets may jst be the Perfect platform for old games. Today's PC have HUGE screens and playing them in a window just feels wrong to me, and blowing up full screen is .. ugly to put it nicely. The tablets screeen and keyboard make it all look natural almost, like it belongs that way.

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