Help me test a new STOS demo

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thomas3
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Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:55 am

For some reason known only to me, I've spent the last few months writing a very ugly, old school STOS demo that runs in the interpreter! As we all know, the STOS interpreter is super, super slow - embarrassingly so. But I've worked out some ways of squeezing some quite fun effects out of it anyway ;). There's six screens, a menu etc, and a little break demo (like a reset demo, but STOS style - you can active it with CTRL-C in the main menu!!!).

It's now kind of finished, I think... but as I only have Steem to test it on, if anyone is interested (which is a very long shot, I know), please do try it out on your system because I'd love to know whether it works (or to what extent). Just don't expect it to be good. Or have any nice design at all. Basically, expect to feel like the last 25 years have never happened :D.

You need 1MB for this, and AFAIK it runs OK under TOS versions 1.02 and 2.06.

I've packed it onto a disc image with the patched version of STOS, so it'll autoboot - almost like a real demo!!

You get some GFX glitches here or there (e.g. 2vbl flickers, especially when the screen first scrolls in any direction in the menu - this seems to be something to do with the interpreter dynamically assigning memory; some other weird stuff, like what looks like a screen address error intermittently in the menu). I know about some of these. And, remember kids, it's STOS - so memory allocation times are kind of painful... get your fast forward button at the ready ;)

Please do let me know any bits that need fixing - or if it just totally fails to run for you.

"Enjoy" (if that's the right word?) my love letter to STOS, and to the 1990s demoscene!!

Tom.
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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby farvardin » Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:27 am

hi,

I haven't tried it yet on my Atari, only on Hatari and Steem, and it looks good and smooth for me!
That's funny, I've just started to look how to code in Stos basic this week.

I don't understand, you stated in the first screen you couldn't compile it on Steem because of the help key in steem, but why haven't you tried in hatari for the compilation?

I was about to write about the character in the main screen, which doesn't move with the joystick in hatari or steem, but after a second thought, I remember the joystick is often assignated to the arrow keys in emulators, so it's the reason why it didn't work for me first. Could it be possible to precise this in the intro that the joystick is not enable and we must use arrows? And/or could it be possible to add for example the numpad in addition to the arrows?

so i've looked at the other doors, it's impressive, well done! I'll probably have a look at the code as well (i'd like to use stos to include a presentation for my ym or sndh tunes). I suppose some effects are not working correctly in hatari, I'll test it further in steem. (it's funny you can start your demo in tos 2.06 but I can't run the stos basic editor in 2.06, it crashes with 2 bombs unless I run tos 1)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:53 am

Hi!

Thanks for the reply! Good point about the arrow keys... Easiest solution might be to add joystick support. I'll do this.

I'll test under Hatari asap (which I've never used tbh)...

Ha, the compiler thing... basically, what happened was that I couldn't run the compiler when first messing around with STOS again, so was focusing on the interpreter. When I realised that you could do more with the interpreter than I'd ever thought, I came up with the idea of ditching the compiler for a whole demo. At the same time, I was checking out a lot of 8 bit demos - so it became a challenge to see if I could beat 8 bit assembly with a very slow, 16 bit high level interpreter!

A totally crazy project :)

The code is totally unreadable as I've reused variable names to save memory. Happy to share readable sources if you are interested in any of the screens in particular :cheers:

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby Gaiyan » Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:44 am

I gotta try this as well. I too have started to get back into STOS. I'm collecting the various add-ons where I can. Hopefully I have time.
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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby MM41 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:57 am

Very good STOS demo, congratulation Thomas3 :cheers: ,
tried on my 1040 STe, the speed is good and effects are :o ,
Last edited by MM41 on Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:02 am

MM41 wrote:Very good STOS demo, congratulation Thomas3 :cheers: ,
tried on my 1040 STe, the speed is good


Yay, so glad it works on your real STe!

Thanks!

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby spiny » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:06 pm

just spun this up in STEEM, and it's brilliant fun :D

Will try my real ataris later :)

yous STOS coding is a million times better than my 68000 coding :D

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:04 pm

spiny wrote:just spun this up in STEEM, and it's brilliant fun :D

Will try my real ataris later :)

yous STOS coding is a million times better than my 68000 coding :D


Aw, thanks! I had lots of fun making it. Let me know how it runs! :)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby spiny » Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:25 pm

works fine on real hardware here too - colours are better than in STEEM as well :)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:29 pm

spiny wrote:works fine on real hardware here too - colours are better than in STEEM as well :)


Hey, that's cool! Thanks for trying it.

Now it seems to work, I feel like I should do something with it! Is there anywhere e.g. I can upload it? Or a different forum here I should stick it on?

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby farvardin » Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:25 am

Maybe publish the code on github? So everyone could benefit from it?

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby spiny » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:37 am

thomas3 wrote:
spiny wrote:works fine on real hardware here too - colours are better than in STEEM as well :)


Hey, that's cool! Thanks for trying it.

Now it seems to work, I feel like I should do something with it! Is there anywhere e.g. I can upload it? Or a different forum here I should stick it on?



create an account for yourself (if you're not already in the database) on http://demozoo.org and link it there. If you link to dropbox etc, it'll eventually get mirrored on scene.org too

there is also http://www.pouet.net but the regulars there are quick to criticise, so best avoided, unless you like people bad mouthing stuff you made for no reason other than they can :)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby wietze » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:43 am

spiny wrote:
thomas3 wrote:
spiny wrote:works fine on real hardware here too - colours are better than in STEEM as well :)


Hey, that's cool! Thanks for trying it.

Now it seems to work, I feel like I should do something with it! Is there anywhere e.g. I can upload it? Or a different forum here I should stick it on?



create an account for yourself (if you're not already in the database) on http://demozoo.org and link it there. If you link to dropbox etc, it'll eventually get mirrored on scene.org too

there is also http://www.pouet.net but the regulars there are quick to criticise, so best avoided, unless you like people bad mouthing stuff you made for no reason other than they can :)


Nah. People are gentle to new faces in the scene. I never felt that my debut and subsequent stuff got harsh criticism. Dont be afraid, the scene is nice and kind!

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 2:13 pm


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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby spiny » Wed Aug 16, 2017 3:35 pm

top work :)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby mlynn1974 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:39 pm

Hi Thomas,
That's an excellent demo! Well done.
The intro and the rotating zoomer are really impressive. This is probably the best STOS demo since the Misty demo.
I tested it on: STEEM 3.2, TOS 1.0, 2Mb, STFM.

I take it you use STOS 2.08? I personally use STOS 2.06. A backup of my old ST STOS dev system.
You probably know already but you don't need special keys to run the compiler simply:
load "compiler.acb"
run
Still got, still working: Atari 4Mb STe, 520STFM, 2.5Mb STF.
Hardware: Cumana CSA 354, Ultimate Ripper, Blitz Turbo, Synchro Express II (US and UK Versions).

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:03 pm

Hi!

I really appreciate this! I spent hours watching the Misty Demo (including your screen of course!) when I was about 12... weird to think that was so long ago now. I remember my dad sent Top Notch an extra fiver on top of the Misty registration fee to say thanks for all the stuff they sent, and Billy Allan rang me up to say thanks. He probably wasn't expecting to have to speak to an incredibly excited child - awkward.

I was amazed with how well the zoomer worked too. Who could have guessed what you can do with the palsplit command?!?!? Finding out the cheats you can do with this felt like my sync scroll moment, ha! Some screens in this demo that use palsplit/kopy tricks actually have processor time remaining, such as the vertical dist...

I actually think that STOS has much more mileage so I'm gonna do some more stuff, compiled this time...

Are you still making anything in STOS?

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby mlynn1974 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:50 pm

Hi Thomas,
Billy was a great guy.

I haven't written anything in STOS since about 1994. I made a few demos that were never released including an unfinished port of the Amiga Legalise It music demo in STOS. This was mainly to show my ST\STE join of the Whizzcat mod player. It worked well but I'm surprised no-one else did it. I tried the 3D cube at the start but it was too slow. I converted A Globe Called Alice to the Amiga but I lost touch with Billy and didn't get the original equations for the globe. I had to rip the 256k data block from it by trial and error!

I have realised that I don't have the most up-to-date version of the Misty Extension. You have v2.0. I just got an early v1.0 and stuck with it!
I downloaded the v3.0 compiler from Exxos's site but I can't remember which files to copy into the compiler directory. If I had the time I would put my stuff out there but I'd have to remove my adolescent text from the scrollers.
Still got, still working: Atari 4Mb STe, 520STFM, 2.5Mb STF.
Hardware: Cumana CSA 354, Ultimate Ripper, Blitz Turbo, Synchro Express II (US and UK Versions).

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby YQN » Fri Aug 18, 2017 7:05 am

Works fine in Steem here (TOS 1.62, 1MB RAM), will try on the real hardware later. I was the same age as you when I had my ST and although I didn't speak English I managed to figure out how Protracker worked but chip trackers were out of reach for me. Now I can use them so I totally understand how you feel about making a STOS demo long after you dreamed of it! Good job :)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby dhedberg » Fri Aug 18, 2017 10:03 am

Great work Thomas! Good presentation and nice effects! Like it! If you enjoy programming (demos), you should consider moving on to assembly language. I think you'd really enjoy it!
Daniel, New Beat - http://newbeat.atari.org

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby thomas3 » Thu Aug 24, 2017 9:27 pm

dhedberg wrote:Great work Thomas! Good presentation and nice effects! Like it! If you enjoy programming (demos), you should consider moving on to assembly language. I think you'd really enjoy it!


Hey! Thanks for the kind words and encouragement!

Thanks to you and a couple of other people, I've spent the last 7 days messing with assembly for the first time. I've attached my first 68000 screen!!! :-D It isn't great but, dude, it's a big deal for me. I NEVER thought I'd manage ASM...

(Still using STOS to test algorithms and make data files tho... I can't leave it totally behind ;) )
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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby YQN » Fri Aug 25, 2017 9:02 am

Cool! :)

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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby dhedberg » Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:43 am

VERY good for a first screen in asm! You're talented! Don't give it up!
Now it's just about coming up with new ideas and effects, and synchronizing everything with the beat of the music! :wink:

So, how do you like programming in assembly language? It's tedious at times, but you've got total control and the possibilities are endless... also, if you like optimizing your code, it adds to the fun!
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Re: Help me test a new STOS demo

Postby MM41 » Fri Aug 25, 2017 6:46 pm

It's not too late Thomas3, congratulation for your first ASM screen!!!


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