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Thread: Elite - Amiga Version - Detail questions

  1. #136
    Really enjoyed this thread. Lots of Elite memories there. I remember being so disappointed that Elite Plus for the PC had no retro rockets

  2. #137
    Originally Posted by Geraldine View Post (Source)
    Hi Philipp

    As to your questions, apart from Rob Nicholson, I fear only David Braben or Ian Bell might know some of the answers. I will assume you already know of Ian Bell's site, but just in case here is a
    Well I'm still alive but considering it was around 20 years since I wrote the conversions, I honestly cannot remember the detail at all. I did used to have the source code on 5.25" disks but they got lost a long time ago I'm afraid.

    BTW - the reason the MSX, Amiga & ST versions are different to the BBC Micro version was that I had to write them blind, i.e. it was a visual copy of the game as I didn't have access to the source code. Some contractual quirks if I recall. All I had was the wireframe shapes plus the code for the planet name generation.

    I was helped considerably by my friend Alex King who did studied maths at university and really helped with the 3D math. I recall sitting in my flat at the time doing dot-products and the like. At the time there was very little documentation on 3D for computer games so I'm amazed it worked at all.

    Cheers, Rob.

  3. #138
    >Rob... Rohoooob -- are you listening?! Please help...

    Am reading but no bells ringing ;-) A lot of it was random - like chances of falling into witchspace.

    Cheers, Rob.

  4. #139

    Various

    Hi Stardust, Mr. Micro's ST/Amiga source code was never made public (but the BBC version was). I have a mostly commented, disassembled version that will answer all of your questions but some are simple enough to cover here.
    I would have killed for that when writing the conversions!

    1. Hull strengths for each ship were stored in "OBJECTS.IMG" which is track loaded into memory in the Amiga version
    Shudders as I remember learning about the Amiga disk encoding system!

    3. Triggering of WitchSpace is entirely random in the Amiga version. The algorithm is as follows:
    So my memory isn't totally trashed.

    7. Maybe Rob Nicholson changed girlfriends between 1.0 and 2.0 because the cheat code for 1.0 was "SARA" but for 2.0 it was "SUZANNE" (with added encryption). 2.0 also added the Library as somebody else mentioned.
    Ahh the lovely Sara. She never was my girlfriend - just a very pretty friend. I wonder where she is now. I have no recollection of Elite 2 so Suzanne is nothing to do with me.

    Cheers, Rob.

  5. #140
    Originally Posted by munrobasher View Post (Source)
    Well I'm still alive but considering it was around 20 years since I wrote the conversions, I honestly cannot remember the detail at all. I did used to have the source code on 5.25" disks but they got lost a long time ago I'm afraid.

    BTW - the reason the MSX, Amiga & ST versions are different to the BBC Micro version was that I had to write them blind, i.e. it was a visual copy of the game as I didn't have access to the source code. Some contractual quirks if I recall. All I had was the wireframe shapes plus the code for the planet name generation.

    I was helped considerably by my friend Alex King who did studied maths at university and really helped with the 3D math. I recall sitting in my flat at the time doing dot-products and the like. At the time there was very little documentation on 3D for computer games so I'm amazed it worked at all.

    Cheers, Rob.
    Well I think you did a great job Rob and just for the record, I loved the Pink Thargoids! Well.... when I wasn't being blown up by them that is.


  6. #141
    Hi Stardust, Mr. Micro's ST/Amiga source code was never made public (but the BBC version was). I have a mostly commented, disassembled version that will answer all of your questions but some are simple enough to cover here.
    I would have killed for that when writing the conversions!
    Hi Rob,

    The commented source code actually refers to your 68k code

  7. #142

    68k source code

    I guessed as much. It's rather an honour to think somebody took the time to disassemble it. I really do wish I'd kept the 5.25" disks with the source code on. I can see them clearly in my head. Amiga & ST. I think it was written on a Sirius-1 PC clone using a cross-assembler:

    http://oldcomputers.net/victor9000.html

    Cheers, Rob.

  8. #143
    Wow, Rob... Thanks for joining in this thread!!

    By now, thanks to the great community here, nearly all of my original questions have been answered. And I, at least, have learnt a lot. Now it's even more fun to play the old Elite again on the emulator . I think you did an awesome job!

    Philipp

    Oh, P.s.: Did you ever get the facebook message I sent "you" (or the Rob Nicholson I thought it likeliest to be you)?

  9. #144
    Originally Posted by munrobasher View Post (Source)
    I guessed as much. It's rather an honour to think somebody took the time to disassemble it. I really do wish I'd kept the 5.25" disks with the source code on. I can see them clearly in my head. Amiga & ST. I think it was written on a Sirius-1 PC clone using a cross-assembler:

    http://oldcomputers.net/victor9000.html

    Cheers, Rob.
    My compliments on the code quality. You mentioned that you didn't know much about 3D back then but the code shows a deep knowledge. Your register allocation scheme when calling subroutines had me a bit perplexed however

    Anyway, it was reverse-engineered to make an iPhone port running in a VM with various graphical and touch screen enhancements, but unfortunately it can't be publicly released.

  10. #145
    Originally Posted by Stardust View Post (Source)
    Oh, P.s.: Did you ever get the facebook message I sent "you" (or the Rob Nicholson I thought it likeliest to be you)?
    Not that I can recall. This is me:

    https://www.facebook.com/rob.nicholson.3979

    Cheers, Rob.

  11. #146
    My compliments on the code quality. You mentioned that you didn't know much about 3D back then but the code shows a deep knowledge.
    I knew nothing about 3D before starting the Elite conversion ;-) I did electrical engineering at university and there was just enough math there to get me kickstarted. As I said, I was really helped on the maths side by my friend Alex King. We did proof of concept of the 3D on an Amstrad CPC.

    Your register allocation scheme when calling subroutines had me a bit perplexed however
    I've always been a fan of OOPs even at assembler level. Guess what's why I transferred to C++ easily. Can't remember what my register allocation scheme was. The 68k was a lovely chip though. Much preferred it over the awful 8088 architecture in the memory-flawed PC. Same reason I preferred the 6502 over the Z80 and went completely mad over the Alpha Risc chip which I never used but read the manual (yes I know sad). I often thought that the world would have been a better place if the Motorola architecture had won over the Intel one.

    The only coding I do these days is in VB.NET and C# for web apps.

    Anyway, it was reverse-engineered to make an iPhone port running in a VM with various graphical and touch screen enhancements, but unfortunately it can't be publicly released.
    That's a shame - would be good to see the old girl on my phone. Any chance for the Android? I'm not a big Apple fan - too controlling for me.

    Cheers, Rob.

  12. #147
    Stardust, I told you this wasn't him and that you should consider yourself lucky he didn't reply
    https://www.facebook.com/rob.nicholson.1829

    Re: Android version, no plans myself but maybe someone else here...

  13. #148
    LOL - who posts like that!!

  14. #149
    @Quelo LOL -- no that wasn't the one I contacted -- fortunately

  15. #150
    Originally Posted by Stardust View Post (Source)
    Geraldine, thanks for your links. Unfortunately, I already knew about them... But obviously, I also know that my questions are very specific, so I wasn't too optimistic about answers .

    I read "somewhere" that the original Amiga sources had previously been made public; but the thread in which that was discussed was long dead and so, unfortunately, I couldn't peruse the sources for answers, either... Maybe someone still has them?! Anybody out there?

    Well, I'll just keep on looking...
    I don't think the Amiga Elite source code was leaked as I was the only one who ever had it... and still do if we can read these:

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...6/IMAG0794.jpg

    Cheers, Rob.

    - - - Updated - - -

    And yes I know I said they were lost but I found them again ;-)

    Cheers, Rob.

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