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Data: 15 aprile 2018 15:54:24 CEST
Oggetto: Project Update #27: ZX Spectrum Next by Henrique Olifiers
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More information on case production and games!
Posted by Henrique Olifiers (Creator)
As promised, the two-weeks updates are now a thing, welcome to the April 15th
progress report for the Spectrum Next.
First things first, the case. We’ve found not one but two plastics
manufacturers with extensive experience and track record (both worked with
SMS in the past with good quality results) and through last week they got
access to the files in order to assess them, quote and provide ballpark
Next week we’re selecting the partner to move forward and start the work on
the mould right away. There are a few good news: the new partners’ timelines
seem to be significantly shorter than from our original supplier (confirming
next week); one of them can accelerate production in exchange for some extra
payments and; all of the hard work that would eat a lot of the time, such as
validating and adjusting the files to the realities of moulding, is already
done on our end. We’re ready to hit the ground running with either of them.
Thus, while the next update is scheduled for April 30th, we’ll have a
mini-update on the 22nd of April to communicate the dates at last.
I owe a huge, huge thanks to Michael Cadwallader for his daily help
(actually, day and night!) with the case (and other stuff, such as the box,
SD cards, ESP modules... ) -- the Next wouldn’t be advancing as it is without
his support. Super thanks, Mike!!!
Our keyboard supplier started the production in early April, and all is
progressing as planned. As you may recall from our last update, we were
lining up the keyboard production to the case manufacturing in order to save
on storage costs, but given the case delay we started the keyboard right away
Time to see this in the flesh
Onto Mike with some game updates...
As part of the Kickstarter stretch goals, a number of game titles were
announced and I know that many people have been wondering as to their
progress. We have hunted down a few individuals and demanded news!
No Mercy – Spectral Interlude
Developed using the SJASM+ assembler, Photoshop, AY sound and FX editors
(including some of their own utilities), this game was announced early on in
the Kickstarter when Spectral Interlude approached the team about writing a
game after seeing and backing the Kickstarter.
They were already in the development stages for what was then called No Fate.
One dev-kit later and they started work on a Next version of the game.
Given that only some of the team possess actual Next hardware (I'm fixing
this -- Henrique), development has been slower than they originally hoped but
they remain 100% committed to getting it finished. They cited the disk
access, extra memory, extra colours, hardware scrolling and turbo modes as
significant factors in terms of their decision to create a Next game and we
can expect this title to make good use of the expanded Next features
Yie Ar Kung Fu meets Renegade? I'm into that!
In parallel with the Next version, Spectral Interlude are also producing a
classic version of the game which will run on a standard Spectrum. Twice the
coding and graphics then! The team are keeping the specifics closely guarded
for now, but when will it be ready? The team will not commit to a date at
this point but hope that it will be “soon”. For now you can visit the team’s
web site here with all things Castlevania for the Speccy.
Jas Austin Rex Next is progressing nicely. Most of the core code is in and
working, along with keyboard control of Rex and some basic enemy movement and
It is being developed on PC using Microsoft Visual Studio and a custom
assembler written by Steve Clark. Back in the day this assembler was used to
create Gameboy games but has been modified for use with the Next.
The Rex in a Window(s)
The graphics have been extracted from the original game using a visual memory
viewer, again written by Steve Clark.
It was decided early on to keep a more “traditional” look to the game,
maintaining the original Spectrum colours and using software sprites. There
are ideas in the pot that might leverage some Next enhancements to provide an
extra bit of bling and the turbo modes of the Next will be used to produce
something that would not have been possible back in the day.
One of the best-looking Speccy games ever...
Jas tells us that whilst he has never stopped developing games, it has been a
huge amount of fun returning to Z80 code and a system without game engines.
“Without the Next project I doubt I ever would have seriously thought about
following up one of my 30 year old games”.
Jas has been uploading progress on the game’s development to his Youtube
channel which you can follow here. Feel free to comment on his videos to ask
As mentioned in update 26, Adrian Cummings (super sorry for calling you Adam
in the previous update, Adrian!!! -- Henrique) has not been resting on his
laurels since completing Dungeonette but is busy with his next creation,
DeltaStar Earth Defense. This is his second title for the Next which is
currently in its early development stages. This has not prevented him from
producing a box mockup and a screenshot though!
More boxed goodies from Adrian 'Adam' Cummings
Behold Deltastar in all its colours
Also from Adrian, Dungeonette officially went on sale on Friday and hundreds
of people snapped up their digital downloads and physical copies of the game.
Indeed he has now run out of stock but is hoping to have more back in stock
next Friday. Keep an eye out on his website and the Facebook page for more
news on this.
This marks the first physical game on the Next platform and the response from
the community has been fantastic. Many people have purchased this without
even owning a Next and see this as the birth of something new, a piece of
Lemmings on the Next
Mike Daily has started working on a Lemmings version for the Next!!! This is
one to watch: his code is open on github and as soon as some images (and
playables) are available, we'll include them on the updates. Meanwhile he's
updating in the FB Group if you want to get the first peek.
Baggers sent to Space
Wrapping up this update, our very Jim Baggley has been sent to an alien
Look at Jim go!
So, so eager to control Jim... =D
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