Arkanoid 2 - Sam Coupé remake.

This is a remake of the excellent Atari ST version of Arkanoid 2: Revenge of Doh by Peter Johnson.

If you've read my latest blog post you'll know that I've been using an Ultimate Ripper cartridge to look at the graphics for various ST games. There's no shortage of great Atari games but finding titles that would be possible to remake on the Sam has been a challenge. Arkanoid 2 is a genuine 80's arcade experience, by which I mean ludicrously difficult and designed to liberate as many coins from your pocket as possible! I've been playing this Atari ST port quite a bit this year and it seemed like a good candidate for me to have a go at recreating on the Sam.

To start with I wrote a routine to draw the graphics on the Sam using the ripped bitmap graphics and their masks and, once this was working, I modified it to create a "compiled sprite" from them. The way I usually handle sprites that need transparent pixels has always been a bit slow so this technique can now be added to my toolbox for a future Bubble Ghost update, as well as my other projects. The way Peter Johnson handled the graphics, which he also drew by eye from the arcade version, allowed him to use all 16 colours for the sprites while still using colour 0 as the transparent colour. I will be borrowing this technique for my future projects as well!

I've made a simple level designer to build the brick arrays and I'm now working on the ball movment and collision detection. I've made quite a bit of progress already and so I'm expecting, at the very least, to release a demo in time for Christmas. I've had to come up with a compromise to deal with the lost 8 pixels of vertical resolution on the Sam compared to the Atari and I will be interested to see if people are happy with it. The bat has ended up about 4 pixels closer to the bricks making the game a little more difficult. The graphics from one of the other 8-bit versions may be more suitable for the Sam but I hope not because the ST graphics look amazing!

By the way, you can ignore the 'Round' numbers in these screenshots, the current version gets confused when I skip a level due to having two possible brick patterns depending on if you choose to go left or right!

Stay tuned for more news on this very soon!