Dragon Defense Squad

You're doing what?!?!

For my next project, I've decided to write a game for the Atari 2600. It should be an interesting challenge - the Atari 2600 can address 4KB of ROM, has 128 bytes of RAM and no video RAM(it generates the video display on the fly.) One nice thing is the Atari uses a 6507 CPU, which uses the same machine language that I learned on Commodore computers. If you are intested in programming the Atari, I suggest you check out 2600 Programming For Newbies, hosted over at AtariAge. AtariAge can even produce your homebrew game in cartridge form.

The Setting

Your kingdom is under attack! The wizards of an enemy kingdom have developed a substance that destroys anything living. They are dropping it from the sky in hopes of devastating your kingdom's cropland. As part of the elite Dragon Defense Squad, your task is to flame the substance midair to prevent it from destroying your crops. Your kingdom's wizards have not been idle, they've conjured up a teleportation spell to aid the battle.

Game Play

The player will control the dragon using a joystick in the left port as well as a keypad in the right port. The joystick controls the direction of flight and the flame, while the keypad is used to quickly teleport to other areas of the screen. The substance will fall from the sky towards the cropland at the bottom. Protected cropland will be green, scorched cropland will be black/brown.

Every few screens will be a bonus round. You'll get to swoop down on herds to feed the dragon. "Moooo".


Version Notes
April 17, 2004 Initial code - decoding joystick and keypad controls


Link What's there
2600 Cookbook Kirk Israel's 2600 cookbook. Collection of sample code
AtariAge Excellent site for Atari video game consoles.
Stella Mailing List Email discussion group for programming the 2600
TIA Color chart Colors the Atari can make for the 3 TV standards it supports.

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