Garrett (garote) wrote,

Jabbering at Ace about coding for Merryo Trolls and AceTracker

You don't know how to go about it?

Shit, man! Remember the great rule of programming! Take the big tasks and chop them up into little steps. If it still looks too big, chop it up into even smaller steps. Chop it up so fine it seems like you're moving at a snail's pace.

"Step 3: run diagnostics on the whole code with the fifteenth NOP removed."

First make a routine that will use the data box to display a single point anywhere in the song. Then have keyboard commands that move it around. Make keys for "move whole screen" "move to next event" etc. Then turn 'em into buttons. (The foundation of the editor is being able to see where you edit, right?)

Then make a "cursor" - divide the view area up into a zillllion tiny buttons, that are only checked when the mouse is on the window. How to make all that button data? Write a basic program to do it for you! Then DIS it into source code!

Next comes code to highlight a button when it's clicked; not so hard (turn it inverse?) Then write code so the program knows where that spot is in the song. See? All these are easy steps! Divide and conquer!

That's how I dredged through Guido's movement routine. I remember when all he was was a head, that didn't erase, stuck on one location on the screen, which only scrolled left. Hell, I'm sure you and I both remember when all "Trolls.S" was was a pair of loops, that scrolled Samantha Fox in and out of a bikini across the screen! Those were the good old days, when we didn't have to worry about IRQs and prodos loaders and 8-bit checking.

I remember when acetracker was a single o-scope, that erased it's entire box before redrawing... (Jeez that was funny...) I feel like a person raising kids probably feels.

Trolls: "Hey, I'm a big awesome program!"

Garote: "Yeah, but to me you're always my junior- shitting his zero page, spitting up his pureed sprites, wandering all over bank 0 and bumping head-on into the ROM, crying when the softswitches didn't play fair..."

Trolls: "Aww, shut up dad!! You're embarassing me in front of AceTracker!"

Ace: "No, not really. Little AceTracker was the same way. I remember back before he was Prodos-trained, he had to walk around with an Exec-file loader on his ass!!"

Garote: "Hahahah! Yeah, and Trolls was the same way! Remember when we used to call him 'PEA.TEST'? Jeez was he little!"

Trolls: "Shut UP, dad!!"

Ace: "Oh boy- yeah, I remember when AceTracker here only had one o-scope, and NO mouse control!"

AceTracker: "No WAY, dad! You're lying! I've had mouse control as long as I remember! And I must have had at LEAST four o-scopes!"

Garote: "Nope! And you and Trolls STILL don't get along perfectly, to this day..."

AceTracker: "Hey, that's HIS fault! He's not synched to VBL!"

Trolls: "You wouldn't be either if you had to drag around a PEA FIELD all day!"

AceTracker: "You think it's easy maintaining twelve o-scopes and a PEI window?"

Ace: "Now now, boys. You'll improve. You're going to get an editor, AceTracker!"

AceTracker: "Wow!"

Garote: "And you're finally going to do full-screen two-layer scrolling! The first ever on a GS!
That's my boy!"

Trolls: "Aw, jeez, dad."

(Leave It To Beaver theme music)
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