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AuthorTopic: SkillGrid released  (Read 2673 times)

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Offline saimo

SkillGrid released
« on: April 27, 2019, 08:44:52 AM »
RETREAM and RGCD are delighted to announce the release of SkillGrid, a new shooter for AGA Amigas.

There are plenty of shooters around, but none like SkillGrid, an endless score-attack vertical shoot 'em up featuring frenetic, tactical gameplay and comprising of a variety of different sub-games, boss battles, and in-depth scoring mechanics.

SkillGrid is available for digital download, but it also received a couple of gorgeous physical editions.

BASIC EDITION: jewel-cased glass-mastered CD with 16 pages booklet, 2 floppy labels, RETREAM postcard, RGCD postcard, RGCD vinyl sticker.

DELUXE EDITION: clamshell box containing the BASIC EDITION plus 2 floppies, 4 badges pack, A3 poster (optionally rolled in a separate container).

Information and digital download: https://www.retream.com/SkillGrid
Physical editions: https://rgcd.bigcartel.com/product/skillgrid-amiga
RETREAM website: https://www.retream.com
RGCD website: https://www.rgcd.co.uk
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline trekiej

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2019, 06:29:38 AM »
Looks awesome.
Amiga 2000 Forever :)
Welcome to the Planar System.
The following users thanked this post: saimo

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2019, 08:17:01 AM »
I should receive my box today, and I hope I'll have enough time to make an unboxing video that shows the awesomeness of the package ;)
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2019, 09:00:46 AM »
It took a while, but finally here's the unboxing video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JYWeZfIDPwg
Check it out to see what a great job RGCD did with the deluxe edition!

(And sorry for the poor video quality: I don't have adequate equipment and I also messed things up :-[)
« Last Edit: June 27, 2019, 09:02:43 AM by saimo »
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2019, 09:02:56 AM »
One day I woke up with the song The Man with the Gun by Press Play On Tape playing in my mind. Somehow, a mental connection was born: how cool would it have been to have a piece of that song as the music for SkillGrid's Music Mode? So, I spent a little time to cut/mix excerpts from the song and to add them to the game. And then I didn't stop there: also all the other music pieces were replaced with parts I extracted and adapted from the same song. This video shows the result - and how good the audio engine of the game is ;)


* this version of the game is not publicly available;
* the game has its own original soundtrack.
« Last Edit: June 27, 2019, 09:36:29 AM by saimo »
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2019, 02:20:11 PM »

Just a quick heads-up to let you know that, after some months, the deluxe edition is back in stock on the RGCD store!

RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2019, 02:27:21 PM »
Sorry, the link in the previous post is broken. This is the correct one: https://rgcd.bigcartel.com/product/skillgrid-amiga
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2021, 04:14:23 PM »
Apart from the new package artwork (which is being worked on), the only thing that is holding up the release of SkillGrid v1.1 is the new Amiga CD³² NVRAM custom routines: they work under WinUAE, but they don't on all the real machines out there. Or better, that was what used to happen in the past: now I have rewritten the routines once again, and I have no idea of what happens on real machines. Therefore, I have prepared a proper test suite to have the routines tested... by anyone who feels like giving it a go on a real Amiga CD³² ;) Not having one of those machines, the fact that they mount different EEPROMs and the lack of official documentation makes developing this stuff quite difficult. Any feedback will be much appreciated.

Click here to download the suite.
This short video shows what the suite does (the operations will be surely slower on real machines).

Code: [Select]

This is a test suite that purposes to verify whether my custom routines for
direct access to the Amiga CD³² NVRAM work.
Developing them is quite challenging because:
 · I do not have an Amiga CD³², so I have to rely on emulation, which is not
   100% exact;
 · different machines mount different EEPROM chips, which behave differently;
 · there is no official documentation (my references are the documentation that
   has been thankfully produced by who studied the behaviour of Akiko and the
   EEPROM datasheet from ATMEL, the maker of the EEPROM).
The routines work perfectly under emulation, but that is no guarantee that they
work also on real machines. Indeed, previous versions worked under emulation and
on a couple of machines, but failed on another machine.


This suite will perform several read/write operations from/to the NVRAM, whose
DATA WILL THUS BE ALTERED (unless the routines fail to access the NVRAM
altogether). At the end, it will attempt to restore the NVRAM data exactly as it
was at the beginning.
Given that the routines are experimental, though, first it will check if a
backup of the NVRAM items exists and ask you whether to make a (new) backup, so
that the NVRAM items can be restored after the tests if the custom restore does
not succeed or execute at all (only OS-compliant NVRAM items will be backed up;
the backup and restore operations are done by means of the OS-legal, reliable,
third-party tools DumpNVRAM and RestoreNVRAM - check out NVRAM_Tools.doc).
You will be informed about the backup status and asked what to do and whether to


· An Amiga CD³² with a writable media drive (DO NOT TRY ON OTHER MACHINES)
· The AmigaDOS Copy, Delete and Execute commands in the commands path.


To perform the tests:
 1. copy the NVRAMRTS directory from the archive to anywhere on the drive;
 2. from shell, enter the NVRAMRTS directory;
 3. run the "test" script and follow the on-screen instructions.

At the end of the tests or if the tests hung:
 1. reboot the machine;
 2. if the NVRAM data is not restored correctly or you are not sure, and a
    backup exists:
     2.1. from shell, enter the NVRAMRTS directory;
     2.2. run the "restore" script;
 3. pack the NVRAMRTS directory into an archive;
 4. send your Amiga CD³²'s specifications(*), the archive and, if the tests
    hung, the color of the screen at that point to postmaster@retream.com.

(*)The marking on the EEPROM would be particularly helpful, but, since that
requires opening the machine, do not worry if you do not feel like going that

Thank you!


The tests are performed by means of a tool called WriteReadNVRAM. It is a shell
program that allows to access any arbitrary chunk of the Amiga CD³² NVRAM.
It works as follows:
 1. if requested, it writes some data from an input file to the NVRAM;
 2. if requested, it saves some data from NVRAM to an output file.

The shell arguments are:
 · INPUTFILE=IF/K     : input file (unspecified = do not write data to NVRAM)
 · WRITEADDRESS=WA/K/N: NVRAM address in [0, 1023] to start writing from
 · WRITESIZE=WS/K/N   : number of bytes in [1, 1024-WRITEADDRESS] to write
 · OUTPUTFILE=OF/K    : output file (unspecified = do not read data from NVRAM)
 · READADDRESS=RA/K/N : NVRAM address in [0, 1023] to start reading from
 · READSIZE=RS/K/N    : number of bytes in [1, 1024-READADDRESS] to read
 · QUIET/S            : do not print any information to the standard output

These values are used for unspecified arguments:
 · WRITESIZE   : 1024
 · READSIZE    : 1024

These values are used for invalid arguments:

If QUIET is not specified, the following information gets printed:
 · startup code : <NVRAM startup code (see below)>
 · input file   : <input file path, if specified>
 · write address: <(corrected) NVRAM address for writing>
 · write size   : <(corrected) number of bytes for writing>
 · load code    : <load code (see below)>
 · output file  : <output file path, if specified>
 · read address : <(corrected) NVRAM address for reading>
 · read size    : <(corrected) number of bytes for reading>
 · save code    : <save code (see below)>
 · elapsed time : <elapsed time expressed in color clocks>

Operation code:
 :| = no operation
 :( = operation failed
 :) = operation succeeded

No data is written to the NVRAM if loading fails.
No data is read from the NVRAM and saved to file if the NVRAM startup fails.

During execution, AmigaOS is disabled entirely. Also, the screen gets blanked
and repainted dynamically as follows:
 · blue : writing;
 · cyan : preparing to read;
 · green: reading;
 · red  : starting an operation.

« Last Edit: September 10, 2021, 08:46:41 PM by saimo »
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC

Offline saimo

Re: SkillGrid released
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2021, 08:47:34 PM »
Want to have a look at SkillGrid v1.1? Here's a huge rollercoaster longplay for you to enjoy!
The video is quite long, but if, you go through it all, you'll get a perfect idea of how varied and dynamic the gameplay is. (By the way, I did catch on purpose some maluses in order to show their features, but I just couldn't force myself to catch all of them :P)
« Last Edit: September 27, 2021, 08:57:30 PM by saimo »
RETREAM - retro games for Amiga, Commodore 64 and PC