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Rasterscan Review

Press cutting added by JPickford on Mon, 09 Mar 2009
Subject: Rasterscan


This is a scan from an old issue of Crash magazine I forgot I had. It's a review of a game I designed (one my 500 quid jobs I mentioned last week).

The game was really me trying to be clever rather than actually trying to entertain. You 'control' a ball shaped robot on a crippled space ship which you must repair and ultimately pilot and steer away from a star towards which it is drifting. Very little is explained to the player so it's all bit frustrating and needlessly obscure.

I think the review here is actually quite generous and the score is likely boosted by the novel-at-time digitised graphics which don't look too great now.

As well as the design my other contribution to the game was writing a program in BASIC which generated the rotating ball animation for the main character.

The game was programmed by Steve Hughes who gamely implemented all my 'clever' ideas although I don't think he was ever convinced by it (quite rightly).

The 'digitised' graphics were produced by placing real objects in front of a B&W video camera which was connected to an Atari ST. Scans took a few seconds and the interference patterns were (I think) caused by the flicker of the flourescent lighting in our office being out of sync with the slow scanning process.

It's a far cry from the multi-megapixel cameras we all carry around built into phones nowadays. The process was closer to Victorian photography in that the subject had to remain still for several seconds and with much poorer results.


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