MSX2+ popularity

鄧永志

Posted 6 months ago

How do developers look at MSX2+? I have a feeling it is sorta ignored and instead people are targeting the first 2 generations instead, or the last (Turbo R).

What is your view on it? Do you just not like it and prefer other generations? (I know the differences between systems, I just want to know more about the "feeling" people have)

I like the MSX 2+, because it is the "highest" one I got. I think the hardware scroll of the v9958 makes it easier for new developers to create horizontal scrollers, but most people seem to rather go for MSX2 using tile mode (screen 4 instead). A shame, but it is the developers choice/preference so I am not complaining or anything ;)

Replies

Nowadays even MSX2 is quite ignored, most games are developed for MSX1. I clearly prefer MSX2, it has a lot of features to do good games.

About MSX2+, I personally love it but at this time we are still doing our engine for MSX2. However if we move from MSX2, it will be to MSX2+ with no doubt, so who knows...

About Turbo R, no intention of doing nothing for it at this moment.

It's whatever.


MSX2 seems more common in terms of a new person finding one to use. In Japan, they still seem to be the most readily available unit.


So, as more people become interested in MSX, I think it's better to target that with FM, since FM carts can be obtained later.


MSX2+ is what people who are already pretty keen on MSX get, or people who get lucky. They're the priciest non TR model.


TurboR is functionally useless for development outside of niche crap.


I sold my 2+ in favor of a 2+FM cart.

I think the hardware scroll of the v9958 makes it easier for new developers to create horizontal scrollers, but most people seem to rather go for MSX2 using tile mode (screen 4 instead).

One of the reasons why people use SCREEN 4 is that updating the whole screen implies sending only 896 bytes to the VRAM, while using a bitmap mode would require moving a lot more data.

Personally, I prefer to target the MSX2 as a development platform, just because that's what will reach the most people without the limitations of the MSX1.

I guess that most people who program for the MSX1 nowadays do so because it's much simpler than other generations, and the limited memory means that things don't get out of hand.

In my opinion, working with bitmap modes requires more elaborate graphics, so you either have to find a graphics artist, or rip them from other games **COUGH**KAI**COUGH**.

Inferno uses Screen 5. I wonder how it would've looked with hardware sprites instead.


The game also works on an MSX2, you just lose FM sound and only get the PSG backing layer

Personally, I prefer to target the MSX2 as a development platform, just because that's what will reach the most people without the limitations of the MSX1.

I think so.

MSX2 seems to be getting more attention lately, compared to a few years ago. So that's good.

MSX2+ has a lot to offer, but it's not required for all game types. There are some game genres that can only be reasonably done on MSX2+.

Personally I feel that the V9958 should've had at least 256K VRAM to be more universally useful. The 萌SX project will definitely provide 512K VRAM on V9958 :D

MSX2 seems more common in terms of a new person finding one to use. In Japan, they still seem to be the most readily available unit.

Hmm I always thought most MSX fans would have at least a 2+ or turbo R. I guess its chicken and egg problem, in a sense that not everyone wants a 2+ or upgrade there MSX2 because of lack of software.

One of the reasons why people use SCREEN 4 is that updating the whole screen implies sending only 896 bytes to the VRAM, while using a bitmap mode would require moving a lot more data.

Funny, as a beginner I feel tile modes are a bit complex. But I guess that's a one time thing to learn/setup.

In my opinion, working with bitmap modes requires more elaborate graphics, so you either have to find a graphics artist, or rip them from other games **COUGH**KAI**COUGH**.

I felt the graphics are "restrictive" in tile mode (2 colors per row per tile) so I thought that would be too hard for a beginner pixelartist like me to create good graphics. Bitmap mode seems easier because its just a picture without those restrictions.

But maybe ill give it a try sometimes.

Inferno uses Screen 5. I wonder how it would've looked with hardware sprites instead.

Probably runs at higher framerate, smaller sprites, less colorful sprites, less sprites/enemies on screen at the same time.

MSX2+ has a lot to offer, but it's not required for all game types. There are some game genres that can only be reasonably done on MSX2+.

What genres would that be? Ultrafast scrollers?

Personally I feel that the V9958 should've had at least 256K VRAM to be more universally useful.

Would have been nice indeed ;)



Tilemodes on MSX are indeed more complex, but that doesn't take away from the fact that they require a relatively small amount of data to update the whole screen.

If you can deal with the complexity and restrictions, it can be nice. ESPECIALLY on MSX2+, because it allows you to use the blitter in the tilemodes! I don't think I've seen any software take advantage of this before though.

We currently focus on MSX2 as I think it can give us many good games yet.

Also like much the MSX2+ (I got one) and think the V9958 is the more underused in the MSX platform. Sad as it can give us great results.

About the MSX2+ itself as platform evolution,it could have been a great computer, but some design mistakes avoided this. But probably this could be for another topic.

The biggest problem for the european market was that the MSX2+ didn't offer much of anything new. Afterall, our MSX2 models were already outfitted with 128K (or more!) memory mappers, and diskdrives, and most people already had FM-PAC or one of its clones.

In fact, european MSX2 games that made use of the 128K memory mapper had to be sold as MSXturboR games in Japan. Crazy, innit!

Yes, indeed, most MSX2+ models have 64kb, this is a serious downside when you want to develop a game for it, because most MSX2 models, like GuyveR800 says, have 128Kb or more (exceptions like Philips NMS 8220)

So taking this as a dev standard isn't that strange, what is strange is setting that standard for a newer model to 64kb.

I have seen projects that use screen 5 for MSX2 and when MSX2+ is used (V9958 vdp) then it goes to screen 10 (or something), there was a race game recently that had this.(forgot the title), I think this is a friendly solution

Post a reply

You need to be signed in to reply.