Metal Dragon

Metal Dragon

par hamlet on 15-04-2021, 08:38
Sujet: Software
Langues:

Metal Dragon is a work in progress.
It has been several years since Kai Magazine made the last MSX game and it seems they were missing to develop for this system.
If it turns out that someone wants a copy, Kai Magazine will run a pre-order.
Graphics, music, text and game-play may vary in the final version.
All graphics are made in MSX2 Screen 8 format, but this game uses the V9990 because it is 10 times faster.
This game is intended as a parody of some 80's belic games. Noone should take it too seriously.

Intro music: Robert Vroemisse (Deva)
In-game music: John Hassink (Deva, Myths and Dragons, Rune Monster, The Sorrow of Gadhlan'Thur)
Game concept and ideas: Víctor Sánchez, Miguel Ángel Jiménez, José Casanova, Oscar Kenneth
Story: Víctor Sánchez, Oscar Kenneth

Relevant links:

Commentaires (44)

Par Gig71

Resident (60)

Portrait de Gig71

15-04-2021, 12:13

I like kai magazine games.
I will buy the digital version.

Par Crow

Supporter (10)

Portrait de Crow

15-04-2021, 13:33

Likewise

Par journey

Hero (523)

Portrait de journey

15-04-2021, 14:02

Can't wait! for the cartridge version, of course! Smile

Par AxelStone

Prophet (2963)

Portrait de AxelStone

15-04-2021, 14:03

Good looking game and nice action. One question, since it's SC8 and only uses GFX9000 due to the higher speed, should it be possible to a version for all based FPGA MSXs around? FPGA MSXs have an Turbo VDP option which boots the speed a lot (I think x5 at least)

Considering the big base installed of this kind of users (OneChip, Zemmix, SX1, SX1 Mini...) perhaps it's an interesting market Smile . I'm the proud owner of one Zemmix Cool

Par valkyre

Hero (542)

Portrait de valkyre

15-04-2021, 14:06

Nice. I will want a cartridge

Par ARTRAG

Enlighted (6506)

Portrait de ARTRAG

15-04-2021, 14:45

Very good! Another great game for v9990

Par raymond

Hero (524)

Portrait de raymond

15-04-2021, 15:00

Nice, I would like to pre-order one!

Par msxtrd

Master (252)

Portrait de msxtrd

15-04-2021, 16:17

BRING IT ON KAI :]

Par Randam

Paragon (1322)

Portrait de Randam

15-04-2021, 18:50

YAAAAAAASSSSSS! Another Kai game. Bring it on! I want to preorder it!

Par Chadwick

Resident (38)

Portrait de Chadwick

15-04-2021, 21:31

Aww sheeeeeitttt. I'm in

Par Daemos

Paragon (1948)

Portrait de Daemos

15-04-2021, 21:42

Yes i am all in for a digital version. It is mindless and fun!

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

15-04-2021, 23:06

Thank you everyone for your enthusiasm!
We will begin a preorder soon.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

15-04-2021, 23:08

AxelStone wrote:

Good looking game and nice action. One question, since it's SC8 and only uses GFX9000 due to the higher speed, should it be possible to a version for all based FPGA MSXs around? FPGA MSXs have an Turbo VDP option which boots the speed a lot (I think x5 at least)

Considering the big base installed of this kind of users (OneChip, Zemmix, SX1, SX1 Mini...) perhaps it's an interesting market Smile . I'm the proud owner of one Zemmix Cool

It is not possible, not by a long shot:
This game does not use the v9990 just for the extra speed (which is aprox. 10 times faster than the regular msx2 screen 8) but also for the 512kb of vram. This game uses all 512kb of the v9990 vram.

Par Randam

Paragon (1322)

Portrait de Randam

16-04-2021, 08:01

I love the speed. And nice to see another high spec game.

Any chance this game will also have a 2 player coop mode? Always found it a pity that the msx contra had no 2 player mode (despite the pictures in the manual showing 2 people). This could fill that gap in that case.

Par gdx

Enlighted (4496)

Portrait de gdx

16-04-2021, 10:13

Happy to see this nice game. There are however two small things down a bit the game quality in my opinion. The sky blue font used does not seem to me to be adapted to this game type, then the jeep which crosses the stage and which passes through the objects without leaving a trace on the ground. Ok, maybe these are small details for most people but I find that it decreases the pleasure. It would be the cherry on top if you tweak it.

Okay, the traces of the wheels are not so essential (although traces that fade as you go would be nice) but it would be better if the medicine box shattered for example.

Par Ivan

Ascended (9289)

Portrait de Ivan

16-04-2021, 11:47

@gdx, this is a work in progress version. I am sure Kai Magazine will do their best to polish some details that might be improved.

I would also refine a bit the helicopter blades that appear in this part of the intro to look more like these ones (now they look a bit like a cloud). Anyway it is up to the artist to decide to change such tiny details. The game already looks pretty spectacular and I am preordering it! :)

Par erpirao

Paragon (1190)

Portrait de erpirao

16-04-2021, 11:47

kai, one for me please!
Regarding the issue of the turboVDP of fpga
1.- The turboVDP of is at most x5 the 9958, the 9990 is like MINIMUM X9, with logical operations, and up to 23x in raw copy.
2.- As far as I know, I can't play an fpga with that VDP on any MSX, and I can go with my 9990 and play it on any MSX.
3.- the turboVDP of the FPGAs does "have 1MB", but it is not known how it is used, in the end it is to use a 9958 with more vram, in the 9990 you have for example a 512x212 b3 mode with 256 colors sc8hd).

Par AxelStone

Prophet (2963)

Portrait de AxelStone

16-04-2021, 12:07

Kai Magazine wrote:

It is not possible, not by a long shot:
This game does not use the v9990 just for the extra speed (which is aprox. 10 times faster than the regular msx2 screen 8) but also for the 512kb of vram. This game uses all 512kb of the v9990 vram.

Thanks for the clarification. It's supposed that OCM / Zemmix has an extra mode of 1Mb VRAM, I don't know if it really's fake VRAM since V9958 can't address more than the basic 128Kb, I can investigate if you want. Another solution should be to use normal RAM to store graphics and move to VRAM, you have up to 4Mb RAM, but in this case, I don't know how should be the performance moving data from RAM to VRAM with 8,06Mhz Z80 included.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

16-04-2021, 13:32

Moving all the necessary data from RAM to VRAM is waaaay slower than the v9990's performance.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

16-04-2021, 13:50

Thank you everyone for your feedback.
I must clarify:
This newspost is based on a facebook news we released over a month ago, so many things have changed within the game and many improvements have been made.
The intro font is now clearer to read.
The jeeps leave some marks now (whenever it is possible. Due to the way the game engine works, it is not always possible to leave permanent marks on the background, and dealing with the wheel marks as live objects is not an option here).
I know it is easy to compare this game with many arcade/16 bit games and see all the details that are missing from a real 16 bits game with a kick-ass cpu and graphics card, but this is still an 8 bit game.
This game already requieres a turbo cpu (panasonic 2+, zemmix and all its variants) in order to work at full speed. If we add more stuff (2 players, more details that should appear on a 16 bit game, etc) the game would requiere a Turbo-R.

We will release an updated video very soon (probably this weekend).

I also wish to clarify that we are making this game for fun. Lots of sales are NOT the objective here. We just want to make a nice v9990 arcade-like game with all the stuff we want/can fit in it and loaded with frenetic action, while parodying belic games from the 80's. That's all.
So, reaching a wider audience by making the game as hardware friendly as possible or making exclusive versions for lower specs is not in the priority list.
The priority is to make a cool looking v9990 game with 256 colors and have fun while doing it.

Having said this, I apreciate the feedback and please keep it coming. The v9990 vram and performance are at its limits, as it is the cpu and the memory, so adding details will be difficult, but if it is a matter of correcting a mistake or changing something we might be able to do it.

Par ListoMefisto

Champion (435)

Portrait de ListoMefisto

16-04-2021, 14:28

rcastillo and I would like to the preorder the game :)

Par Randam

Paragon (1322)

Portrait de Randam

16-04-2021, 14:35

Thanks for your comments and looking forward to your game!! Always cool to see the v9990 get some love...

Par Daemos

Paragon (1948)

Portrait de Daemos

16-04-2021, 14:43

If we are talking about feedback. We already have swearing in the intro then we should add decalls in the game as well Wink so blood and flying body parts. Thats would be soooo awesome.

Par timbru

Rookie (22)

Portrait de timbru

16-04-2021, 14:46

@Kai Magazine Have you tested this on the MSXVR?

Looks like a fun game and I will probably want to order one!

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

16-04-2021, 15:47

Daemos wrote:

If we are talking about feedback. We already have swearing in the intro then we should add decalls in the game as well Wink so blood and flying body parts. Thats would be soooo awesome.

Belive me, we really wanted to add gore and body parts, but that goes beyond the game resources at this point (cpu, vram). Adding that would requiere to remove other current stuff...

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

16-04-2021, 15:57

timbru wrote:

@Kai Magazine Have you tested this on the MSXVR?

Looks like a fun game and I will probably want to order one!

We haven't been able to test it on VR at this point. I am still waiting for mine, which should have arrived in February, but I belive the VR team are fine-tunning some things and I am not sure when will I receive it.

This game will use a special cartridge (with a lot more capacity than the usual 2048kb we use) and extra ram for those who don't have a ram upgrade in their panasonic 2+ so I am pretty sure the game will not run on msxVR straight out of the box since it will probably requiere the msxVR team to make this cartridge compatible with the VR.
Since we don't know when (or if) this will happen since this deppends on the VR team, the game will be announced as NOT msxVR compatible until we can test it ourselves and we see it works correctly.

Par erpirao

Paragon (1190)

Portrait de erpirao

16-04-2021, 20:48

Kai Magazine wrote:
timbru wrote:

@Kai Magazine Have you tested this on the MSXVR?

Looks like a fun game and I will probably want to order one!

We haven't been able to test it on VR at this point. I am still waiting for mine, which should have arrived in February, but I belive the VR team are fine-tunning some things and I am not sure when will I receive it.

This game will use a special cartridge (with a lot more capacity than the usual 2048kb we use) and extra ram for those who don't have a ram upgrade in their panasonic 2+ so I am pretty sure the game will not run on msxVR straight out of the box since it will probably requiere the msxVR team to make this cartridge compatible with the VR.
Since we don't know when (or if) this will happen since this deppends on the VR team, the game will be announced as NOT msxVR compatible until we can test it ourselves and we see it works correctly.

much more capacity?
OMG, are we talking about a 4MB cartridge?

Par M-A-D-M-A-X

Expert (72)

Portrait de M-A-D-M-A-X

16-04-2021, 21:07

A great development team ! A futur hit on MSX Smile

Par Daemos

Paragon (1948)

Portrait de Daemos

16-04-2021, 21:40

Enable gore only on the r800? Or is even the r800 too slow? Maybe make the slowest pieces if code in pure assembly? Happy to help.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

16-04-2021, 22:27

I thought of adding extra features for r800 users but:
1- this doesn't solve the vram maxed out issue (and yes, we load different graphics and enemies in every stage, even in most sub-stages).
2- This would make feel most people (the non-r800 users) as if they are missing on part of the game/fun.

Also:
3- The game already adapts/supports to a lot of different hardware:

z80 (disabling sprite priority)
z80 turbo
r800 (enabling vsync)
fm pac
music module
fm pac + music module
opl4
English or spanish
and more stuff I can't remember at the moment.

Implementing and taking care of all this and testing for all those variants and checking over and over that everything works with all the possible different configurations in different machines is already a nightmare, both coding and testing.
Cpu, ram, vram and v9990 performance (speed) is maxed out, we added literally as much stuff as we could.
Trying to add something like this would requiere massive changes, just to see if it is viable, and I am pretty sure it is not, or at least not worth the effort.
Belive me, if it were viable and relativelly easy, I would have included it already.
The v9990 has more limits and is not as powerful as people seem to think (it is just a fraction of what a similar arcade machine video chip actually had). Making this game as it is right now (as you will see in a couple of days on a new video) is already a huge challenge.

Par Daemos

Paragon (1948)

Portrait de Daemos

16-04-2021, 22:38

Fair enough. I understand the pain. I have been trough all that hell as well. Adding something to your engine in the final stages is a true pain and will introduce nothing but a million extra regressions. Very curious on how it will turn out.

Par gdx

Enlighted (4496)

Portrait de gdx

17-04-2021, 02:12

Thanks Kai, I can wait.

Par Lazzeri

Champion (269)

Portrait de Lazzeri

17-04-2021, 15:43

It is great news to see Kai back in action! Smile

Can’t wait to get my copy, as usual.

Par valkyre

Hero (542)

Portrait de valkyre

17-04-2021, 16:33

There have been some BIG releases recently, this will be another one!

Par x1pepe

Master (147)

Portrait de x1pepe

18-04-2021, 08:31

Lol!
One for me!
Smile

Par msd

Paragon (1459)

Portrait de msd

18-04-2021, 09:28

@kai magazine : did you use BMLX or only LMMM. As the linear copy commands are faster.

Par TheKid

Paragon (1174)

Portrait de TheKid

18-04-2021, 10:03

And please, please consider a digital version for people like me depending on an emulator to play gfx9000 games. Keep up the good work, love your games.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

18-04-2021, 15:17

msd wrote:

@kai magazine : did you use BMLX or only LMMM. As the linear copy commands are faster.

I use different kinds of copy commands depending on the task and necessity.

Par lintweaker

Champion (403)

Portrait de lintweaker

19-04-2021, 14:30

Great, a new V9990 game. On the buy list!

Par Alejperez

Supporter (8)

Portrait de Alejperez

19-04-2021, 22:32

Hi, but where is the preorder, in this thread? if so, please Kai, count on me.

Par Robby

Master (205)

Portrait de Robby

20-04-2021, 10:15

Read please ---> W.I.P.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

20-04-2021, 11:03

Alejperez wrote:

Hi, but where is the preorder, in this thread? if so, please Kai, count on me.

Thank you for your interest Smile
The preorder will begin very, very soon.

Par Kai Magazine

Paragon (1395)

Portrait de Kai Magazine

22-04-2021, 10:56

Par Alejperez

Supporter (8)

Portrait de Alejperez

23-04-2021, 09:10

I saw, just preordered.. Wink