Wizard's Crown Chronicles (02) - The Setup Part III (Final)

Bill Loguidice's picture

(See The premise at the end of this posting for details on this ongoing feature)
OK, I'm sure you're getting tired of "setup" at this point, but this is finally it. Frankly, it was bothering me that I'd have to type on the same system I was using as a display that I was also capturing direct images and videos on, so I decided to be a bit technically poor and split the composite video/mono audio signals coming from the C-128D into two outputs. There appears to be little-to-no noticeable degradation, so there you go. This will now allow me to be as "authentic" as I prefer to be, meaning I'll be playing "Wizard's Crown" on a real Commodore 8-bit system with a vintage monitor, while still having full capture capability on my laptop.

So, once and for all, here are the specs for the review and chronicle:

- C-128DCR with JiffyDOS, with input from the original keyboard
- Original Wizard's Crown game disk
- Commodore 1084S monitor using the composite inputs

For notetaking and direct video/snapshot capture:

- Gateway CX210X Tablet PC running Windows Vista
- Adaptec GameBridge USB capture device using composite inputs (NOTE: To run smoothly with Windows Vista, "Home Theater.exe", which displays the C-128DCR's output in real-time has its priority in Windows Task Manager manually set to High)

I will be using Notepad to take notes and write the story since that will make it quick and easy to paste into the Armchair Arcade blog. I will do final edits directly on Armchair Arcade.

I will be using my upgraded Flickr account to host all images and link back directly from Armchair Arcade. Videos will be hosted on YouTube and also utilized directly from Armchair Arcade.

To begin, I will be typing "GO64" at the C-128DCR's "READY." prompt and pressing RETURN. I will then answer "Y" to the "ARE YOU SURE?" prompt and press RETURN. I will then type "Load "*", 8", pressing RETURN, then typing "RUN". Wizard's Crown will now boot and I'll begin. This is then shown below, taken from the Panasonic LUMIX digital camera:

WC_Setup

See you next time when our review and story finally begins...

END

The premise
Having seen and enjoyed other blogs/recountings of personal experiences in chronicling the regular goings on while playing computer or videogame RPGs, I decided to present my own take on the concept. More than a simple review or type of "fan fiction", this is an ongoing series of features told in both traditional review and story formats concurrently (and as visually as possible, perhaps even with some video). Whether the experiment is ultimately a success or not won't be determined until the game is completed and the last blog entry written, when I'll compile each piece into separate features (likely smoothing a few things out and making proper transitions). I may even change styles and formats along the way if I see the need or get feedback to that effect. As with my other ongoing series here on Armchair Arcade, this will not be a regularly scheduled event, but I'll try to make it as consistent as possible. Regardless, there's always a good reason to keep checking Armchair Arcade daily for something new!

Comments

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Online
Joined: 12/31/1969
May utilize notes on the images sometimes going forward...

I love how Flickr lets you add notes (hotspots) within the photo as well. Unfortunately, it only seems to display after clicking the photo and going to Flickr.

======================================
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
======================================

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Matt Barton
Matt Barton's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/16/2006
Hotspots

Whoa, that is neat! I can see a lot of potential for that tool.

n/a
80sFreak (not verified)
C128D Keyboard

Is now almost the same color as your desk! :) Does the GameBridge have S-Video inputs?

Cheers,

80sFreak

C= Forever!

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Online
Joined: 12/31/1969
That darn keyboard...
80sFreak wrote:

Is now almost the same color as your desk! :) Does the GameBridge have S-Video inputs?

Cheers,

80sFreak

C= Forever!

It was like that when I got it, sadly. I can't recall any of my original stuff that I still own oxidizing like that, but stuff that I've acquired, particularly Apple stuff and an Atari 130XE, have.

As for the GameBridge, yes, it does coax, composite and S-video, so it can pretty much handle anything. I have noticed though that certain systems, like the Spectravideo SV-328 for instance, output a scan/refresh rate that it doesn't like. The system in question will display on a TV or monitor properly, but when piped through the GameBridge the signal does not properly lock. I've got to try an intermediate device in the middle to see if that makes any difference, otherwise it would be kind of dissapointing. Still, for a $15 device, I've gotten more out of it than I could have ever hoped.

======================================
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
======================================

n/a
80sFreak (not verified)
That darn keyboard...
Bill Loguidice wrote:

As for the GameBridge, yes, it does coax, composite and S-video, so it can pretty much handle anything. I have noticed though that certain systems, like the Spectravideo SV-328 for instance, output a scan/refresh rate that it doesn't like. The system in question will display on a TV or monitor properly, but when piped through the GameBridge the signal does not properly lock. I've got to try an intermediate device in the middle to see if that makes any difference, otherwise it would be kind of dissapointing. Still, for a $15 device, I've gotten more out of it than I could have ever hoped.

Maybe a VCR in between will help?

Cheers,

80sFreak

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Online
Joined: 12/31/1969
Intermediary for GameBridge
80sFreak wrote:
Bill Loguidice wrote:

As for the GameBridge, yes, it does coax, composite and S-video, so it can pretty much handle anything. I have noticed though that certain systems, like the Spectravideo SV-328 for instance, output a scan/refresh rate that it doesn't like. The system in question will display on a TV or monitor properly, but when piped through the GameBridge the signal does not properly lock. I've got to try an intermediate device in the middle to see if that makes any difference, otherwise it would be kind of dissapointing. Still, for a $15 device, I've gotten more out of it than I could have ever hoped.

Maybe a VCR in between will help?

Cheers,

80sFreak

Exactly my thoughts. Whatever I can to do to bridge/buffer. However, there may be something more endemic to the signal, but regardless, an intermediary is definitely worth a shot!

===================================
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
===================================

n/a
yakumo9275
yakumo9275's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/26/2006
Is that a atari-2600

Is that a atari-2600 joystick?

-- Stu --

n/a
Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Online
Joined: 12/31/1969
Joysticks
yakumo9275 wrote:

Is that a atari-2600 joystick?

-- Stu --

Yep, I have literally countless dozens Atari-compatible joysticks/controllers, but I usually just go with the classic these days. My favorite classic joystick was always the Epyx 500xj, but the models I have that are Atari-compatible are original to me and pretty much worn out now!

======================================
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
======================================

n/a
adamantyr
adamantyr's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/28/2007
Epyx 500xj
Bill Loguidice wrote:

Yep, I have literally countless dozens Atari-compatible joysticks/controllers, but I usually just go with the classic these days. My favorite classic joystick was always the Epyx 500xj, but the models I have that are Atari-compatible are original to me and pretty much worn out now!

I got an Epyx 500XJ as well, for my TI-99/4a. Good joystick!

Adam

80sFreak (not verified)
Epyx 500XJ

IMHO, the Epyx 500XJ was the best joystick ever! :) Well, that and the Wico version of it that was covered with a light gray rubber material.

Cheers,

80sFreak

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