MSXdev'08 #11 - Deep Dungeon

by viejo_archivero on 31-01-2009, 23:00
Topic: Software
Languages:

We're almost there! A new entry, already shown at the Nijmegen fair last weekend, has just been submitted: Deep Dungeon. This game, made by Huey, Demonseed and ARTRAG is a dungeon crawler. This game is a highly retro'esque game worth playing. The game comes as a 32KB ROM and requires 16KB memory. ROM label and manual are present as well.

Relevant link: MSXdev'08 website

Comments (34)

By Randam

Paladin (916)

Randam's picture

01-02-2009, 07:59

Great game and great music!!!

Unfortunately the game got locked up on me when I walked down the stairs from floor 12 to 13. Hopefully the bug will be resolved soon.

Real nice concept.

By Sd-Snatcher

Hero (582)

Sd-Snatcher's picture

01-02-2009, 10:35

Is there some sound debug system touching 1-9 keys? Tongue

By Huey

Prophet (2644)

Huey's picture

01-02-2009, 10:41

Wink yup. We left it in for fun.

@Randam: Strange. We will look into it.
Every time you play the game all levels will be different. So it won't keep hanging on 12->13.

By ro

Guardian (4104)

ro's picture

01-02-2009, 12:00

played untill floor 15, got bored. And not because it's not a great entry, just because there's not much variation in the game. Music, gfx and playability are fine! Original entry for sure. I love the fact that it's a low-specs game.

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

01-02-2009, 16:08

ro
try again and go deeper
i assure u will find variation
at "normal" difficulty form level 20 you meet dragons (15 at easy level..)
and the game reserves some nice surprises to those go deeper...
Consider that the code of the actual game if about 1K, so, apart for the 2K needed for the in-game tiles, the remaining about 28K are music, pictures and text.

about hangs
can u tell what was your machine (real hw?) an at which difficulty level it hanged?

By Randam

Paladin (916)

Randam's picture

01-02-2009, 23:55

Additional details about the earlier lock up: I played 'easy' and it was on a level where the stairs to the floor above was one tile next to a crossroads. Only by going to the left you were able to find the stairs to the level below. If you chose one of the other directions you could explorer the rest of that area but you'd have to walk up the stairs and then down the stairs so you could go towards the stairs that are somewhat to the left.

The actual hanging accurred the moment I walked on that particular staircase. Instead you couldn't move, stage didn't change but music kept playing okay.

I tried it on BlueMSX with the regular MSX2 setting. Hopefully this helps.

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

02-02-2009, 00:31

ah, it occured at level change and music continued to work!

this could be a lock-up in the level generator than.

By poke-1,170

Paragon (1756)

poke-1,170's picture

02-02-2009, 06:01

completed on easy in bluemsx as well, all ran smooth for me.
Thumbs up for the music, nice to hear some decent psg tunes again Smile
What aleksi eeben tool did you use ? he makes some fine vic 20 tunes
by the way (and is head of the ringtone dept of nokia in finland).
but yeah... enjoyable little game this was with some nice pictures
as well

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

02-02-2009, 09:43

he did no music and no tools, just a game that inspired us
(Whack for VIC 20)

By Huey

Prophet (2644)

Huey's picture

02-02-2009, 10:15

Music is made using Vortex Tracker II Wink

By JohnHassink

Ambassador (5400)

JohnHassink's picture

02-02-2009, 14:29

God bless Vortex Tracker II. Smile

By LeandroCorreia

Paladin (944)

LeandroCorreia's picture

02-02-2009, 14:38

Nice game. Simple yet fun gameplay, good graphics for 8x8 pixels, and gorgeous music. I finished it at normal. Smile

BTW, there´s possibly a bug in it. Playing it using BlueMSX with MSX2 Japanese settings and the intro plays weird (VERY fast).

By JohnHassink

Ambassador (5400)

JohnHassink's picture

02-02-2009, 14:57

@ LeandroCorreia:

Oh shit, nooooo! Crying

Is the in-game music also sped-up?

In that case it's the interrupt frequency. Sad

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

02-02-2009, 15:07

OMG
Again...I was sure I had fixed this....
Demonseed this happens changing things the last night, each time u add a new detail, all the rest can be affected.

you know: "Walking on water and developing software from specification are easy if both are frozen"

By LeandroCorreia

Paladin (944)

LeandroCorreia's picture

02-02-2009, 16:29

It seems that only the intro does that. Both sound and video run at incredible speed at that setting in BlueMSX (only in intro, game plays fine). In plain MSX1 it worked fine. I did not try other settings though. Tongue

By JohnHassink

Ambassador (5400)

JohnHassink's picture

02-02-2009, 16:50

Well, the video of the introduction is linked to the sound, actually to the steps/patterns of the PT3.
So that would explain it.

So I think, the interrupt will be corrected once the game is started.

Anyway, thumbs up and thanks for testing and telling us about this!

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

02-02-2009, 20:16

The problem with music at start up is new, it happens only on japanese msx2 machine and has nothing to do with the NTSC/PAL we fixed...
Investigating on the reasons, but to me the game seems fine on ANY other machine, both PAL or NTSC.
Can anyone confirm?

By LeandroCorreia

Paladin (944)

LeandroCorreia's picture

03-02-2009, 00:52

I tried it in at least a dozen settings in BlueMSX. Except for MSX2 Japanese, the game works fine...

BTW, a very simple request... Why not create a "move counter" so the player can try to finish the game in the least possible number of moves? Wink

By pitpan

Prophet (3131)

pitpan's picture

03-02-2009, 01:51

I'm totally in love with this game. I'm a big Rogue, Hack and Angband fan. Therefore, this little jewel for MSX rocks! Graphics and music are awesome and do help to introduce the atmosfere. Congratulations to Trilobyte!

By Huey

Prophet (2644)

Huey's picture

03-02-2009, 09:46

Glad you like it.

Steps counter would be nice.
Another nice feature would be to manual set a seed. This way you can compete with others. And see who can finish it in the least number of steps and most gold.

By Imanok

Paragon (1142)

Imanok's picture

03-02-2009, 19:51

Really nice game! Smile

Despite the small gfx, the result is really good looking! and music is very nice too.

Talking about ideas to make the game a little more challenging and looking to all those unlocked doors in the game... why not adding keys to the item list to open all those doors to make the access a little more complicated??... you know, you can't waste the keys happily because you won't be able to reach certain areas until you get more keys. If you don't want the player to use a key for every door, you can make keys to be useable 5 times, for example.

Another possibilities are having locked and unlocked doors... or having different kind of keys to open different kind of doors (with different colours, for example)...

Apart from that... I've read in another post the possibility to make a deluxe version with bigger characters, scrolling and so but don't you think that the scrolling thing is against the current game concept about long dark corridors invisible until you turn the corner and so??

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

03-02-2009, 21:08

Hi All,
First of all, thanks for the reactions.

About step counter and manual seed, these are very simple additions.
We could add them pretty easily, maybe in a next release, good suggestions.

About keys, the idea is very nice, I love it, but it opens a serious challenge in the level design.

Any time we set a locked door in the maze we have to be sure that the man can find the key for that door...
In general we have to make sure that no key is unreachable due to some locked door.

It is quite a challenge to code in ASM. Imanok, do you have some algorithm to suggest? (I had already tons of problems in preventing that you can find twice an already opened chest).

About D&D deluxe, naturally the game would not be turn based, we would keep the foundations of random maze generator and the line of sight system for unveiling the maze. Scrolling and AI in the enemies would be nice additions...

My guide idea is AD&D for intellivision, but with msx (2 ?) graphic

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SRtwlc_WJNM&feature=related
and
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoXEYJBaLnM

By anonymous

incognito ergo sum (109)

anonymous's picture

03-02-2009, 23:22

I have finally managed to play the game during a reasonable amount of time, and I have even finished it (once). I have to say: it is fun to play. As I said in some old message, I like roguelike games and this is a very good roguelike for MSX. Also, I can imagine how difficult is to program in assembler the random maze generation and the line of sight algorithm. So: good job! Graphics, in spite of being very small, are correct. And the ending ones are good. Music is also fine (I liked especially some parts of the ending theme)

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

04-02-2009, 00:50

Thanks, but to be honest, without Whack for VIC20 we wouldn't have done this game.
Aleksi eeben solved in 6502 asm most of the problems, so we had "only" to translate from VIC20 to MSX
(I studied the 6502 and it seems a nice cpu even if it has no 16 bit registers and accesses to 256 bytes of ram as they were special registers.
If you look at our z80 code this is reflected in an abuse of instructions involving index registers, as those allow the maximum number of addressimg modes to the ram)

By JohnHassink

Ambassador (5400)

JohnHassink's picture

04-02-2009, 16:31

@ MrSpock:

Just curious: which part(s) of the ending music did you like especially?

The 'happier' rendition of one of the main themes with the "Konami boink drum" or namely the other parts?

By anonymous

incognito ergo sum (109)

anonymous's picture

04-02-2009, 20:39

@DemonSeed:

In fact, I was referring to a small detail in the music, which sounds when the "Deep Dungeon - 2009 Trilobyte - Created for the MSX Dev'08 Game Competition" appears. Some background notes which give some "medieval" feeling.

By Imanok

Paragon (1142)

Imanok's picture

04-02-2009, 20:52

Any time we set a locked door in the maze we have to be sure that the man can find the key for that door...
In general we have to make sure that no key is unreachable due to some locked door.

I think you can solve this if you don't put keys into chests... you should get them by killing enemies so, sooner or later a killed enemy should drop a key, right??

It is quite a challenge to code in ASM
Are you telling me?? Tongue

Imanok, do you have some algorithm to suggest? (I had already tons of problems in preventing that you can find twice an already opened chest).
Why do you have this problem??. I imagine you pre-geneate all maps before the game starts into RAM, so once you open a chest, open a door or whatever, you shoud change their state on the map so that they are not detected as unopened anymore (even if you re-enter this level again).

Well this is how I would do it...

Another cool idea could be to unlock all doors once you get the amulet and show a coundown to reach the surface before everything collapses. That would make the flight much more stressing Wink

About D&D deluxe, naturally the game would not be turn based, we would keep the foundations of random maze generator and the line of sight system for unveiling the maze. Scrolling and AI in the enemies would be nice additions...

Ah!... sorry, I thought you were talking about 'Deep Dungeon Deluxe'!
Anyway... if you use scrolling, the line of sight system for unveiling the maze, looses its charm (because you can't see what's beyond the limit of the screen anyway).

EDIT: Well, I've just seen the videos and the line of sight system doesn't look as bad as I thought with scrolling Smile

By JohnHassink

Ambassador (5400)

JohnHassink's picture

04-02-2009, 23:20

@ MrSpock: Ah, cool. Too bad that part only lasts a few seconds, huh. Wink

@ Imanok:

I think you can solve this if you don't put keys into chests... you should get them by killing enemies so, sooner or later a killed enemy should drop a key, right??
That's a good idea.
I'm not the coder ofcourse, but I think this would also mean that there has to be a part in the map generator which makes sure you never enter the first floor(s) between doors (which happens now in the game), because you'll meet no enemies to get keys from.

BTW the "countdown" idea I think is pretty cool too! Big smile

By pitpan

Prophet (3131)

pitpan's picture

05-02-2009, 11:50

There are several console games heavily inspired in rogue-like games. They've got a simplified system but they keep enough of the original to be really interesting:

- Dragon Crystal (Master System, Game Gear)
- Final Labyrinth (Megadrive/Genesis)

I love these games. Actually, I own a Final Labyrinth copy and even now and then I play it until I finish it once again.

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

05-02-2009, 12:36

@Imank
humm, giving keys to monsters could solve lots of thing... good point


Why do you have this problem??. I imagine you pre-geneate all maps before the game starts into RAM, so once you open a chest, open a door or whatever, you shoud change their state on the map so that they are not detected as unopened anymore (even if you re-enter this level again).

Well this is how I would do it...

Another cool idea could be to unlock all doors once you get the amulet and show a coundown to reach the surface before everything collapses. That would make the flight much more stressing

We generate each floor when you enter in it, so we need to extract a "status" of the visited levels to restore them as you left them.
We decided to store only the status of chests and not of doors, as items in chests affects severely the difficulty of the game.

Nice idea the one of the countdown, but the game is based on rounds so we need to count turns rather than time.
We could base the counter on the number of steps you used in the way in...
maybe.... we will see.

By cesco

Champion (453)

cesco's picture

05-02-2009, 15:14

The game itself is really good, even if it's really too short (anybody can finish it in less than 10 minutes). I personally didn't like too much the final credits to the MSXDev team for "having put a deadline"... but technically speaking I can't criticize almost nothing in deep dungeon: it's a great game that IMHO deserves to have a sequel, maybe in a form of a 32kb ROM with the ability of wearing various armours and equiping different weapons, the addition of some scrolls, some potions and shops where you could buy and sell the stuff that you find in the dungeons.

I still haven't tested all the MSXDev 09 games, but so far IMHO this is the best game of the competition along with "The Enchanted Crown"...

By Huey

Prophet (2644)

Huey's picture

05-02-2009, 15:53

(anybody can finish it in less than 10 minutes)
We never had the intention to make a game with deep gameplay and long playing times. We liked the game idea and gameplay for being short and uncomplicated.

I personally didn't like too much the final credits to the MSXDev team for "having put a deadline"...
Without a deadline. You would never have seen this game. It would have grown and grown and grown and...... and we would eventually lose interest and drop the project. The deadline is a good thing (at least for us).

it's a great game that IMHO deserves to have a sequel, maybe in a form of a 32kb ROM with the ability of wearing various armours and equiping different weapons, the addition of some scrolls, some potions and shops where you could buy and sell the stuff that you find in the dungeons.
Thanks. Once we finish MOAM we will certainly work on another project (think D&D cloudy mountain) based on the level generator of Deep Dungeon that will have more and deeper gameplay.

By Imanok

Paragon (1142)

Imanok's picture

05-02-2009, 18:51

I'm not the coder ofcourse, but I think this would also mean that there has to be a part in the map generator which makes sure you never enter the first floor(s) between doors (which happens now in the game), because you'll meet no enemies to get keys from.
Well... player could already have a few keys when starting the game Wink

We generate each floor when you enter in it, so we need to extract a “status” of the visited levels to restore them as you left them.
We decided to store only the status of chests and not of doors, as items in chests affects severely the difficulty of the game.

I see. How much memory do you need for a level map??

If you can't pre-generate and store all levels into RAM before starting the game, the only solution I see is saving the status of doors too, the same way you do with chests.

Nice idea the one of the countdown, but the game is based on rounds so we need to count turns rather than time.
You should check and update the timer when necessary on your interrupt routine if it's possible... else you should do it after player turn, after enemy turn and when nobody is moving.

It's a bit strange a countdown not depending on time but on player steps...

We could base the counter on the number of steps you used in the way in…
maybe…. we will see.

I don't like that. The player would walk around and around just to have much more time to escape without problem.

By ARTRAG

Enlighted (6229)

ARTRAG's picture

20-02-2009, 08:23

Hi everyone!
the evolution of Deep Dungeon will be Deep Dungeon Adventure
The new version is ongoing, it will be 48K and will be on real HW (99% probability).
The game is an improvement of the current DD for msxdev with some options suggested here. The extra room is taken for a surprise ;-)