Apple ][ "Peasant's Quest" Details

Some Hardware Notes

The Apple II hi-res graphics are a bit too complex to fully get into here. Roughly, you get 280x192 graphics with 6 colors. There are complex rules about which colors can go where, and you get NTSC fringing. Putting two colors that aren't black or white next to each other you may get a stripe of some other color in between. You get two whites and two blacks but they aren't fully interchangable and it can matter which one you choose as it affects artifcacting colors. Also thanks to Woz memory is a muddled mess and everything is backwards.

The rediculous Apple II Hgr Layout The rediculous Apple II Hires colors

Apple II has no built-in hardware acceleration. It's just 7400 series logic putting out an approximation of a valid NTSC signal. So no hardware sprites, or blitters, or coppers, or scrolling, or palette shifting. Just two pages of graphics (each 8k, which cuts into the 48k of an Apple II+ system) that you can flip between. On most models you can't even reliably get VSYNC or HSYNC signals without some undocumented "vapor lock" magic.

This intro easily fits on a 140k 5.25" floppy (apple II disks were single-density single-sided). The disk ][ is much faster than the C64 disk, it's reasonable to read things off of disk often. However the code to do this has to be cycle-counted (thanks Woz again!) so it's really hard to do things in the background like play music or draw things while disk accesses happen.

Software Implementation

Note, this is for the original "Proof of Concept" release and this might get out of date if/when I implement more of the game.


I'll close with this excerpt from the Homestar Runner Wiki:

Easter Egg about Good Graphics Design

I now have a lot of sympathy for Videlectrix 2.

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