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Thread: Saturn Coding Contest: Porting Party winter '08/'09

                  
   
  1. #1
    SEGA Saturn specialist RockinB's Avatar
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    sat Saturn Coding Contest: Porting Party winter '08/'09

    SEGA Saturn Coding Contest
    Porting Party winter '08/'09


    It is time again for another episode of the annual SEGA Saturn Coding Contest. A few small changes compared to previous contests mean significant improvements for all contestants:
    Your effort is directly rewarded with a prize. No more "I don't have a chance to compete with contestant x", because your prize does not depend on your rank. Instead the amount depends solely on your effort.
    The goal to port games over to saturn lowers the amount of annoying debugging work, so you get more result out with less work and you can concentrate on the funny things of homebrew coding.


    Objective:
    As Porting Party suggests, the objective is to take an existing game of your choice and port it over to SEGA Saturn! This implies that the source code of that game is available and written in C or C++. It's totally up to you which game you choose! Choose your game carefully, try playing it yourself before starting to port it. You'll be best off picking up a game that's finished, very enjoyable to play and that doesn't exceed the hardware capabilities of the SEGA Saturn console.


    Time:
    The contest is running during winter 2008/2009. Meteorologically, this is the time from december 21st 2008 to march 20th 2009. So march 20th 2009 is the deadline for submitting your entries. To submit your entry: upload the Zip-compressed ISO CD image to a file hosting service like megaupload.com and submit the link via email to C4@rockin-b.de.


    Prizes:
    All entries are rewarded, no matter which rank. The better your entry is, the more money you win. The more entries you submit, the more money you win.
    • Money: Every entry wins as much money, as it got points from the judges. So having achieved the maximum results in: 90 point = 90 euro. Even more if you collected extra points by using special saturn hardware features. Multiple entries means multiple times money! Money is transfered via paypal, contestants in the EU can alternatively use bank transfer.


    • USB Data Link v2: This device connects your Saturn with your PC and transfers game saves, bios and uploads homebrew games for testing. Version 2 is brand new and exclusive to contestants, it transfers data much faster than version 1, you can't get it anywhere else. All contestants who haven't got a one last year, will get one for free. Those who won such a device last year, can have it upgraded to v2 for free!


    Judging:
    The entries are judged in the three categories: graphics, sound and gameplay. The judging is done by 5 to 6 judges in parallel. Every judge rates each entry in each category by giving a rating between 1 and 5 points. This means each entry can get up to 75/90 points regularly.
    Additionally, extra points can be achieved by using special hardware features of the Saturn console.


    So happy coding everyone. Porting is perfectly suited to submit multiple entries, because each single entry is being rewarded!
    The Rockin'-B

  2. #2
    SEGA Saturn specialist RockinB's Avatar
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    sat First results: GemDropX

    Here are some images of GemDropX (by Bill Kendrick) running on SEGA Saturn. The port is basically done, all graphics, sounds and music works fine. It's much fun playing it! Maybe the timing can be improved.

    This is going to be one of my entries that I'll do for this contest. Of course, as I'm holding the contest, I won't get any price, only a rank will be given by the judges.

    Titel screen:


    Title screen#2:


    Gameplay in SSF Saturn Emulator:


    Gameplay in SSF Saturn Emulator #2:
    Last edited by RockinB; December 25th, 2008 at 15:31.

  3. #3
    SEGA Saturn specialist RockinB's Avatar
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    sat Porting wip: Vectoroids

    Hello guys,

    I've been working a bit on porting Vectoroids (by Bill Kendrick). This SDL game performs direct access to the frame buffer pixels. Although it claims to use fast geometric calculations, the per-pixel access is poor in terms of speed.

    The game also uses some sort of "gouraud shading"-like color interpolation. That is based on RGB and can't be done with paletted display. However I've got to use paletted display for several reasons (1: hires 640x480, 2: SGLs bitmap library only works with 8bit palette).

    The current implementation (software renderung) lacks a lot of speed. Gouraud shading is also disabled. The display flickers a lot, due to double interlacing and too heavy cpu usage. Apart from that, sound, music, graphics and gameplay work fine.

    But I figured on that particular game, I might as well use 8bit paletted hires display for background and use VDP1 accelerated lowres 16bit display with gouraud shading for the vectors. That's the plan, at least. Stay tuned!

    Title screen:



    In game #1:


    In game #2:

  4. #4
    DCEmu Coder Maturion's Avatar
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    That looks really cool! It would be cool to see you posting this here too: http://www.sega-dc.de/forum/viewforum.php?f=31
    Admin of SEGA-DC.DE

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    SEGA Saturn specialist RockinB's Avatar
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    sat Vectoroids now rendered in hardware!

    Quote Originally Posted by Maturion View Post
    That looks really cool! It would be cool to see you posting this here too: http://www.sega-dc.de/forum/viewforum.php?f=31
    Hello, yeah, I'll try posting there, too. See you around!

    Meanwhile, I've had some success improving my Vectoroids port. Problem was that it's been way to slow, it flickered and the color effects had to be disabled. But now I've switched to using the VDP1 for drawing the vectors. Although, I've had some trouble with gouraud, because it behaves differently than in the vdp1 docs.

    The vector drawing is now done with gouraud shaded lines drawn by the vdp1. The background is 640x480 8bit paletted (hires+double interlace), the vectors are 320x480 RGB double interlace. The game now runs fast, it's finally playable.

    After 2 ports, what should be next one? Any suggestions?








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    Hi all! Its great to see so many people involved with homebrew saturn dev. Im a graduate computer artist and would be interested in creating artwork for anyone if needed.

    RockinB - I know this is a porting contest but would you be interested in graphical help for you game as the graphics look like they could be improved.

    Also, I know the saturn is a very difficult console for making 3D games but id be very interested in helping anyone that is considering working on a 3D project.

    Contact me at liam.d.nicoll@hotmail.co.uk

    I am in the process of making an online portfolio, visit www.nicoll-gallery.co.uk

  7. #7
    DCEmu Coder Maturion's Avatar
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    The contest got recently frontpaged at Gamefreax.de. I hope this draws some more attention to the contest.
    Admin of SEGA-DC.DE

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    Hi. Im interested in making a concept for a 3D racing game for the Saturn to add to my portfolio. Ive had a look around the net but been unable to get any specs regarding the texture map sizes and what sort of colour palette to use. I know that the saturn uses quads and read that it can display 200 000 textured polys at a time. What would that be in quads?

    What other techniques does it support. Alpha masks, normals, reverse faces?

    Any help would be great. Also if anyone is interested in helping me make this concept a working project contact me on liam.d.nicoll@hotmail.co.uk

    also visit www.nicoll-gallery.co.uk

  9. #9
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    MicroCommander would be cool on Saturn

  10. #10
    SEGA Saturn specialist RockinB's Avatar
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    sat Who wants to judge the Saturn ports?

    The Porting Party has been the most successful SEGA Saturn coding contest, there are 50% more entries than in the years before!

    Now I'm looking for people who like to evaluate the entries intensively and finally give them a rating. The entries cover a broad range of game types, including:

    • emulators
    • 2d shooter
    • puzzle game
    • 3d first person shooter

    The judges need to have a SEGA Saturn and need to be able to run CD-Rs on it (either via swap-trick, or modchip). In addition, for one entry a RAM expansion cart would be nice. However, for the first time this year, not all judges need to judge using a real Saturn, some of them can use a good Saturn emulator (SSF), too.

    If you'd like to be among the first to play the newest Saturn homebrew games, please contact me via PM or e-mail: C4@rockin-b.de

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