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Gregory Wolfe

Melkhior's Mansion - isometric 3D game inspired by Atic Atac - On Next, 128K Spectrum & PC

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Yeah we had great positive feedback from Play Expo Manchester at the weekend there where we had a special Play Expo demo for the PC and the Spectrum Next version was shown off for the 1st time. One change has been done already based on feedback - the original PC version was running at 30fps to keep in with the retro goodness but people much preferred the smoother 60fps that the Next was running at, so the PC version was changed to 60fps yesterday.

 

We teased the lower caverns a couple of weeks ago

and I’ll be finishing off all the cavern graphics within the next couple of weeks before returning to the rest of the character animation the Knight (Sir Stamperlot) and the other 3 selectable characters. 

 

 

The most common question we got asked over the weekend is “When will it be finished?”, and the answer we can only give is “When it’s ready!”. There’s only Richard coding and myself doing the graphics and we’re doing this in our spare time. 1 of the Spectrum Next team, Kev Brady, is converting it to that machine and heck knows how Bob Smith, the Spectrum 128K magician, will cram it into that. 

 

Still got a long way to go.

 

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I couldn't believe there wasn't a thread about this on Rllmuk. Of course I've been following this avidly on Twitter and Facebook.

 

I still think the serf should be called Bredbin. ;)

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8 hours ago, Anne Summers said:

Gutted I missed this at PlayExpo. Looks amazing. Were you on the Next stand with Baggers? 

Thanks! I was there in an unofficial capacity, so I was free to roam around the Expo with my son all weekend, though I regularly popped back to the stand to chat with people about the game. 

 

8 hours ago, Gregory Wolfe said:

I couldn't believe there wasn't a thread about this on Rllmuk. Of course I've been following this avidly on Twitter and Facebook.

 

I still think the serf should be called Bredbin. ;)

 

Oh man, the names were difficult to come up with but, like the rest of the game, we decided to stick with the Ultimate Play the Game connection. The game will be full of little nods and references to all their 8-bit releases. The ghost enemy sprite, which is taken from Knight Lore, is only a temporary place holder graphic until I get to producing all the enemy graphics. 

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10 hours ago, redballoon said:

Yeah we had great positive feedback from Play Expo Manchester at the weekend there where we had a special Play Expo demo for the PC and the Spectrum Next version was shown off for the 1st time. One change has been done already based on feedback - the original PC version was running at 30fps to keep in with the retro goodness but people much preferred the smoother 60fps that the Next was running at, so the PC version was changed to 60fps yesterday.

 

We teased the lower caverns a couple of weeks ago

and I’ll be finishing off all the cavern graphics within the next couple of weeks before returning to the rest of the character animation the Knight (Sir Stamperlot) and the other 3 selectable characters. 

 

 

The most common question we got asked over the weekend is “When will it be finished?”, and the answer we can only give is “When it’s ready!”. There’s only Richard coding and myself doing the graphics and we’re doing this in our spare time. 1 of the Spectrum Next team, Kev Brady, is converting it to that machine and heck knows how Bob Smith, the Spectrum 128K magician, will cram it into that. 

 

Still got a long way to go.

 

It’s in great hands with you & Richard at the helm. Really looking forward to it!

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This looks amazing, great work @redballoon!

 

What I really love about this is that when you look at Atic Atac from an isometric perspective, just how similar the structure is to Ultimate’s isometric games. BUT the Stampers could only achieve the fast, arcade style play with an overhead, 2D perspective (like Sabre Wulf also), meaning when it shifted to the isometric format, the gameplay became slower and more puzzle based (to be honest, I never thought Ultimate’s isometric games were a patch on their earlier work, despite the technical achievement).They tried it with Gunfright and Nightshade, but it just want fast paced enough (and there weren’t enough enemies to make it interesting).

 

So so it’s an incredible achievement to get the fast, arcade style gameplay but in an isometric format. Fantastic! 

 

(Talking of sabre wulf, was there not a teaser of it in this engine? Or was it someone else?)

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Thanks all! Honestly, much appreciated!

10 hours ago, gone fishin' said:

(Talking of sabre wulf, was there not a teaser of it in this engine? Or was it someone else?)

That's someone else. They're using their own isometric engine and I think they're just using existing graphics from Ultimate games, though slightly modified.

 

1 hour ago, Fireproofradiator said:

Oh that looks lovely. Are you thinking of doing a physical release @redballoon?

 

You're not the first person to ask this question and it was asked quite a few times over the weekend. The answer is that we're not planning a physical release...but that's not to say it's completely ruled out. We approached Rare at the beginning of the project just to sound them out and they gave us their blessing and wished us all the best. They only asked for 2 things from us; that we don't use the Atic Atac name and we don't sell it. Both of these we're completely fine with. We hoped they might allow us the use of the Atic Atac name but never expected them to and we never planned in selling the game, always intending it as a free download. You could argue that the name change and the use of my original graphics, even though we have reference all the Ultimate games, could be enough to sell a physical release but we really would like to remain on good terms with Rare, especially after we promised we'd stick to what the asked of us. Ach we'll see what happens. 

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Thanks @redballoon. I guess the IP stuff does complicate things although it’s clear you’ve travelled a fair way from Ultimate’s space. All proceeds to charity? 

 

I have to say I think Monument Microgames do a great job of physical ZX Spectrum games. Their edition of Endless Forms Most Beautiful is a treasure. 

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I avoided appearing in that video along with 2 others. I’ll happily do the graphics and talk to you about them but there’s no way I’m appearing in videos! I’ll let my graphics do the talking...

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