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AGI Programming => AGI Development Tools => Topic started by: AGKorson on March 12, 2017, 06:50:36 PM

Title: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on March 12, 2017, 06:50:36 PM
Hi all!

I'm the creator of WinAGI. After the last release in 2007, I've been completely away from the AGI scene (RL sent me in a different direction). I've recently found interest in AGI again, and more specifically WinAGI, and have dusted off the dev files to see where I left off. A number of issues that were reported in the last release (1.1.22) I believe are fixed. And I have added a few more things to an update that's pretty much ready to release.

While I was creating WinAGI, I spent a lot of time disassembling the original AGI interpreters; if y'all have questions about the interpreters, I may have already found the answer for you. And there are some things that are still in the AGI spec files that are wrong (which WinAGI [and it's help files] have right, for example, the algorithm for drawing lines in PIC resources, the definition of splatter codes, the function of reserved flag f11[it's set if a particular platform supports the noise channel - it's not 'logic0 is run for first time']). I also learned a lot about commands, and how the interpreter handles data passed to them which would be really useful for game developers to know and included that in the WinAGI Help file). I may try to upload what I've learned to the Wiki, but only if moderators are cool with it.

I am not an IT guy in my day job dev and programming have always been just a hobby for me. I knew enough to be dangerous 10-15 years ago, but I have never been able to keep up-  most of the dev world has blown by me. I can do simple java scripts, and I've played around with some of Microsoft's latest Visual Studio dev environments (I created a simple phone app that solved a collectible card puzzle game just to see if I could do it), but I'm woefully ignorant of most modern dev tools. My expertise is VBA for Office and VB6 so I tend to stick with what's familiar. With the kids grown up and out of the house now, maybe I'll have more time to learn about all these other tools, and I might even try to port WinAGI to a more modern environment.

I know there's not a lot of love for VB6 and programs created in it, but it's an incredibly resilient programming environment that has worked extremely well even as Windows has gone through many major revisions. (I'm running VB6 on Windows 10 with no issues at all, and WinAGI runs perfectly on my Windows 10 Surface Pro.)  And I also know that Windows doesn't seem to the OS of choice for a lot of AGI aficionados. So maybe a Windows based app developed in VB6 is not the most sought after AGI tool.

But I really hope that people won't discount WinAGI just because of the dev tool used to create it. If you are looking to create a full featured AGI game, I submit that there is no better tool than WinAGI; it's not just a resource editor - it has built in tools that allow you to manage creation of your game from start to finish. And it also has the best editors for ALL agi resources, IMHO.

The VB syntax that I included in WinAGI seems to have been a huge turnoff for many, and caused confusion for many more. I think for my next release, I'll hide that feature so only the original Sierra programming language is shown/discussed. (I'll leave it there as an undocumented feature for myself and anyone else who doesn't believe that VB is the spawn of the devil).

I will probably issue a new release by end of the month, but if anyone has anything in particular that they like/don't like about WinAGI, I'll entertain requests, recognizing that time constraints to make code changes are the biggest factor. And if you have any WinAGI questions, message me or post in the forums.


Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: MusicallyInspired on March 12, 2017, 08:13:12 PM
Fantastic! This is exciting news!
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on March 14, 2017, 12:29:43 PM
I'm getting close to a releasable new version. Here are most of the big changes that'll be in next version:

Before I finalize this release, though I need your help!
What I would really like is as much feedback as I can get from as many users as possible. If there are any bugs that you are seeing, please let me know so I can address them now. If there are any features that you would like added or modified I'll try to incorporate them (recognizing that not all things are doable. And that there a ton of features in WinAGI that you might not even be aware of - so I might even be able to tell you that WinAGI already does what you want!)

Any feedback you can provide is valuable, so thank you in advance for all your help.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 14, 2017, 03:35:33 PM
While I was creating WinAGI, I spent a lot of time disassembling the original AGI interpreters; if y'all have questions about the interpreters, I may have already found the answer for you. And there are some things that are still in the AGI spec files that are wrong (which WinAGI [and it's help files] have right, for example, the algorithm for drawing lines in PIC resources, the definition of splatter codes, the function of reserved flag f11[it's set if a particular platform supports the noise channel - it's not 'logic0 is run for first time']). I also learned a lot about commands, and how the interpreter handles data passed to them which would be really useful for game developers to know and included that in the WinAGI Help file). I may try to upload what I've learned to the Wiki, but only if moderators are cool with it.

The AGI specs probably do require a bit of a revision. I think the original parts of the content have hardly changed since they were written. A few things have been corrected along the way but there probably haven't been many. Yeah, if you have a list of items that you've identified as being inaccurate, it would be great to get them fixed. I'm sure Collector wouldn't mind with regards to his AGI wiki on the sierrahelp web site. Once we get it looking right there, we can copy the relevant bits over to the scummvm wiki. I myself would be interested to look more closely at the splatter codes. I had thought they were accurate based on comparisons between the games and what showpic generated, so I'd be keen to see where they are different. I realise that the line drawing algorithm is probably not exactly what they used, but as far as I could tell, what is in the spec produces the same result, if not in a particularly efficient way. I came up with that by trial and error rather than by disassembling the code, in fact my whole approach to decoding the data back in the early days was by looking at the data rather than the executable. - And since I mentioned GW BASIC in a post from earlier this evening, it was actually back in those days that I started decoding the data. I've still got some GW BASIC programs floating around somewhere from those days that decode AGI game data. Might try to dig them up and see if I can get them running when I have chance. Would be really nostalgic for me, which is what this is all about really.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 14, 2017, 03:41:27 PM
Before I finalize this release, though I need your help!
What I would really like is as much feedback as I can get from as many users as possible. If there are any bugs that you are seeing, please let me know so I can address them now. If there are any features that you would like added or modified I'll try to incorporate them (recognizing that not all things are doable. And that there a ton of features in WinAGI that you might not even be aware of - so I might even be able to tell you that WinAGI already does what you want!)

That sounds like something I could help out with. To be honest, I haven't actually spent much time using all the various tools. I've focused too much on building tools rather than using them. I haven't built an AGI game since The Ruby Cast demos. So perhaps I could try adding a few more rooms to that? - Actually, to be more helpful to you, I might try to build something from scratch, perhaps convert a very small text adventure game. I have a couple in mind already. That way I'd be touching all the editors and I'd be doing it from the initial template. Might not get to it for a few days. I have some time later this week.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 16, 2017, 03:51:49 PM
I've decided to have a go at converting a game called Space Ranger. No one will ever have heard of it since I believe it existed only as a BASIC listing for the VIC 20 published in 1985 by a New Zealand computer magazine. The author is R.M.Doull. I had a copy of that magazine issue back when I had a VIC 20. This was when I was first learning to program, and I'd already played other text adventure games like Adventureland by Scott Adams, so this particular program listing in a magazine for a text adventure really captured my imagination. I recall studying it in detail back then. - Well I located the magazine issue on archive.org yesterday evening and have studied it yet again. It has 20 rooms, about 12 inventory items, and 4 other "actors". Small enough then to attempt to convert.

The first thing I started on was a room layout using the layout tool. This is actually really cool. The one thing I can't seem to find at the moment is a way to change the text in the room box, i.e. the Room ID. I want to change the names of a couple of them but I can't seem to do this. So I had to resort to deleting the room (I did this within the layout tool) and recreating it with a different name. I was able to pick the same Logic number, which was good. When I tried to link it back up to the other rooms, I somehow ended up linking in to the middle of the room, so I attempted to delete the link, but both the link and the room box disappeared. The Logic was still there in the resource list though but I couldn't work out any way of adding it back in to the layout. If I tried the show room option, this particular room wasn't available for selection, even though it existed in the resource list and wasn't shown in the layout. So I had to delete it again, this time with the right click option in the resource list. What appeared to have happened when I reopened the layout tool is that another one of the rooms had disappeared from the layout. The links from the two rooms that it joins to were still there but the box for the room was missing. I was able to add the original room that had disappeared (and that I then deleted) back in, and I was able to join it back up to the rooms on its side, but after saving this, then closing and reopening the layout tool again, the second room that disappeared mysteriously reappeared again but the original room that disappeared that I had recreated and linked up again has now disappeared again. Not sure how to get around this now. The original deletion of the room appears to have confused the tool.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 16, 2017, 03:59:56 PM
I just discovered the Repair Layout option. That has reintroduced the missing room but has also added in a whole lot of extra unattached links that I assume might relate to links that I may have deleted at some point.

Edit: I was just going through and removing those extra unattached links, i.e. right clicking on them to delete, but before I finished doing this, the tool and in fact the whole IDE has locked up with the spinning circle. It's not coming back. The very last thing I was doing was attempting to remove some strange links from "Room 1", which I hadn't yet removed. This is the original room that comes with the template game. I'd left it there by itself while I was creating the rooms for the game. After using the Repair Layout option, the links around this room looked a bit strange, so as part of the removal of unattached links, I tried removing those ones as well. It was in attempting to remove one of them that it appears to have gone in to some sort of infinite loop.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on March 16, 2017, 09:37:49 PM
Thx, this is just the kind of feedback I need.

The one thing I can't seem to find at the moment is a way to change the text in the room box, i.e. the Room ID.
The LogicID can be changed by selecting it in the Resource list, then choosing Description command on Resource menu. You can also change by double-clicking directly on the property box (below the resource list).  These changes are dynamically linked to the Layout editor so you will see changes made immediately. You can also select the Description command when you are editing a resource. But I can see that it would be intuitive to be able to change ID from within Layout editor- that's easy to add.

So I had to resort to deleting the room (I did this within the layout tool) and recreating it with a different name. I was able to pick the same Logic number, which was good.
When a room is deleted, any exits from other rooms to the deleted room should show up as errors (arrows pointing to red triangles). Did you see them?

When I tried to link it back up to the other rooms, I somehow ended up linking in to the middle of the room, so I attempted to delete the link, but both the link and the room box disappeared. The Logic was still there in the resource list though but I couldn't work out any way of adding it back in to the layout. If I tried the show room option, this particular room wasn't available for selection, even though it existed in the resource list and wasn't shown in the layout.
I'm not sure what you mean by 'linking to middle of room'? Can you elaborate? If the room was not in the list, then the layout editor thought it was being drawn- that's not good. If you are able to duplicate it, the exact steps taken would be helpful.

So I had to delete it again, this time with the right click option in the resource list. What appeared to have happened when I reopened the layout tool is that another one of the rooms had disappeared from the layout. The links from the two rooms that it joins to were still there but the box for the room was missing. I was able to add the original room that had disappeared (and that I then deleted) back in, and I was able to join it back up to the rooms on its side, but after saving this, then closing and reopening the layout tool again, the second room that disappeared mysteriously reappeared again but the original room that disappeared that I had recreated and linked up again has now disappeared again. Not sure how to get around this now. The original deletion of the room appears to have confused the tool.
I can't seem to replicate your situation exactly, but I do see there are some problems when deleting then re-adding rooms. After several times of adding, deleting, redrawing exits, I also got a bunch of 'straggler' lines that didn't seem to connect with anything. Selecting and moving them eventually causes a hangup. I think I can track this down though, and fix it.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on March 16, 2017, 09:41:03 PM
I just discovered the Repair Layout option. That has reintroduced the missing room but has also added in a whole lot of extra unattached links that I assume might relate to links that I may have deleted at some point.

Edit: I was just going through and removing those extra unattached links, i.e. right clicking on them to delete, but before I finished doing this, the tool and in fact the whole IDE has locked up with the spinning circle. It's not coming back. The very last thing I was doing was attempting to remove some strange links from "Room 1", which I hadn't yet removed. This is the original room that comes with the template game. I'd left it there by itself while I was creating the rooms for the game. After using the Repair Layout option, the links around this room looked a bit strange, so as part of the removal of unattached links, I tried removing those ones as well. It was in attempting to remove one of them that it appears to have gone in to some sort of infinite loop.
I try to put error trapping in all routines that have any potential for bad loops, but might have missed one or two. Hopefully when I fix the stuff from above it'll address these issues as well.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 17, 2017, 05:20:01 PM
The LogicID can be changed by selecting it in the Resource list, then choosing Description command on Resource menu. You can also change by double-clicking directly on the property box (below the resource list).  These changes are dynamically linked to the Layout editor so you will see changes made immediately. You can also select the Description command when you are editing a resource. But I can see that it would be intuitive to be able to change ID from within Layout editor- that's easy to add.

I can see now why I failed to find that Description option. It appears that it is ignored when the Layout tool is currently open. To me it seemed intuitive that I should be able to change the Room ID within the property list, and I did try that, but that wasn't allowing me to edit it, and the ... button wasn't doing anything, so I assumed it was read only. I've noticed now that that property ... button does open up the Description dialog but only when the Layout tool is closed. I think if all three options (from the Resource menu, within the property table, and also directly within the Room Box) were available while the Layout tool is open, then that would make it easier.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 17, 2017, 05:44:37 PM
I'm not sure what you mean by 'linking to middle of room'? Can you elaborate? If the room was not in the list, then the layout editor thought it was being drawn- that's not good. If you are able to duplicate it, the exact steps taken would be helpful.

Yeah, sure thing. I've been able to reproduce it on the first attempt with a brand new game. This is what I did:

1. Opened the room layout tool immediately after creating the new game from the template.
2. Placed six new room boxes named Logic 2 to 7, arranging them in a 3 x 2 arrangement.
3. Linked them using bidirection links.
4. Closed the Layout tool
5. Right clicked on "Logic 3" and selected Remove from game.
6. Opened up the Layout tool again. At this point I saw the unattached links with the red triangle pointing towards where the Logic 3 box had previously been.
7. Right clicked on each of these unattached "error" links and deleted them.
8. Added a new Room box again and chose "Logic 3" and the same logic number as the one I had removed from the game.
9. Attempted to create a bidirectional link from one of the other rooms to the new "Logic 3" box. This is where I end up with the unidirectional arrow pointing to the middle of the new room box (see attached image below).
10. I then right clicked on that blue arrow and chose to delete it.  Both the "Logic 3" room box and the blue arrow disappeared but the "Logic 3" logic is still showing in the resource list.
11. I then closed the Layout tool and reopened it. "Logic 3" room is still missing (see second image attached below).
12. I then select Repair Layout and the "Logic 3" room reappears. This time I'm able to recreate the bidirectional arrows from "Logic 2" and "Logic 5" without any issues.

Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 18, 2017, 05:25:13 AM
I started drawing the first picture yesterday evening. This is as much a note to myself with regards to my Java PICEDIT tool as it is to you and WinAGI, the note being that it would be nice if there were a way of manipulating the background picture. I kept having to go back to a normal drawing tool to resize and crop the background image and then load it back in to the AGI picture editor. I was thinking that if there were a way to zoom the background picture in and out, and also to drag it around to place it exactly where you want to trace it, then I probably wouldn't have needed to use the external tool to get the background image just right. As I say, my tool doesn't provide that either, but its something I thought would be useful.

Oh, and another thing worth noting, I wasn't able to use both the Ego test tool and the background image tool at the same time. This meant that my visual measurements on whether the furniture in the room has the right size for Ego wasn't something I could do against the background image, i.e. I couldn't walk Ego around the background image to see how he measured up against things. I wanted to try that out before beginning to trace.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on March 18, 2017, 01:16:28 PM
I think I have been able to address the Layout Editor issues. Keeping the Layout editor and the logics in sync is tough because it's hard to anticipate all the ways a user might make changes in logics and in the editor. But I think I've got it mostly figured out. I'm also adding more checks to make sure everything stays correctly synched, and either warning user to rebuild or fixing issues automatically.

I like your suggestions for the picture editor. I can add both of them very easily.

I assume you're using version 1.1.22? If you're interested, once I've got a build ready for testing, I can provide a beta of 1.2.1 so you can see what's already been fixed/improved.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on March 18, 2017, 07:25:55 PM
I also learned a lot about commands, and how the interpreter handles data passed to them which would be really useful for game developers to know and included that in the WinAGI Help file). I may try to upload what I've learned to the Wiki, but only if moderators are cool with it.

I'm going to quote the above again because I've just realised having looked a bit over your WinAGI help file that it already had most of the Saved Game format defined in it. I think we really do need to update the various AGI specs web sites with what you've learnt and have included in your Help file. People will probably look at the web sites first and won't realise that you have more up to date information in WinAGI.

Regarding a beta 1.2.1 build, yes please, whenever its ready.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 05, 2017, 04:37:55 PM
I just want to say again that I'm really impressed with the WinAGI help file. I've been using it as the go to place for checking how things work in AGI. It's far more detailed with its explanations of the AGI commands than other sources, and what it says I've been verifying against the interpreter and the original source code fragments and so far it has been spot on.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: pabuslem on April 12, 2017, 12:48:57 PM
Man, for us who still crave the AGI scene, Andrew Korson's return is BIG news!!!!!!!!!!!

Welcome back, Andrew. WinAGI is awesome! When you have a new build or version of the program, please share it with us. How I'd like to see new AGI games made. I've seen some people using the AGI retro style in AGS games, which is also awesome.

Anyway, is great to have you back, Andrew    8)
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 12, 2017, 04:29:21 PM
...and really great to see you here as well pabuslem. It's fantastic that the AGI scene is starting to build up again.

I think we need to entice a few more AGI fans to this site. I have a feeling that a lot of the old names don't realise that there are active AGI forums in this day and age.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: MusicallyInspired on April 12, 2017, 06:25:53 PM
Or they think ScummVM's AGI/SCI section is the place to be, which is dead.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Nicktatorship on April 12, 2017, 10:21:08 PM
It's not easy to find, that's for sure. So many deadlinks out there, too.

EDIT: There's also quite a few names from AGI past on Twitter.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Collector on April 12, 2017, 11:59:22 PM
There is an agigames.com Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/50001122143/ with Chris Cromer as its admin.

Using the Wayback I have (mostly) restored the AGI Wiki here http://agiwiki.sierrahelp.com/index.php?title=Main_Page

Also, for those that have not read through the forums here a backup of the old Mega Tokyo forums was found. And progress has been made on updating and completing Visual AGI, so we may have two AGI IDEs designed for modern Windows.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Kawa on April 13, 2017, 06:09:27 AM
MegaTokyo AGI section: http://helmet.kafuka.org/megatokyo/forum_4.html
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: pabuslem on April 13, 2017, 09:46:11 AM
Hey, Lance! It's also great to see you here, man.

I miss the AGI scene. How I wish Chad Goulding returned to complete his impressive "Time Quest" demo. So much talent and promise.

I think some old AGI fans migrated to AGS. For instance, Steve Coyle, author of AGI incomplete game "Star Commander", was remaking that game using AGS.

Here you can see a post where he presents his remake: https://www.adventuregamestudio.co.uk/forums/index.php?topic=51627.msg636505847#msg636505847

I don't know if he's still working on it, since he hasn't posted anything new in about two years.

Corby LaCroix, author of AGI games "Corby's Murder Mystery" and the amazing "Caitlyn's Destiny", created the impressive "Heroine's Quest" using AGS.

A while ago, I managed to find and download "King's Quest IV" AGI version. I always thought that was one of the darkest and more complex games in the series and I like to see their logics to learn a little bit more about its programming. Another great game to "dissect" in order to learn is "Gold Rush!".

If any of you visit the AGS site sometime, I recommend you try a game called "Space Quest: Decisions of the Elders". It's a point & click game using a retro, AGI graphic style and starring Roger Wilco's father (it's a prequel). Quite interesting and worth a try!

I like point & click games, but AGI games have such a charm for me... Maybe it's just nostalgia, I dunno. Anyway, it's great to see that there is still some interest in the AGI engine and games!    :)

Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: MusicallyInspired on April 13, 2017, 12:45:00 PM
Ahhhh Time Quest. I was so disappointed when he abandoned that. That was the first AGI fangame that not only really impressed me (many impressed me legitimately) but really hooked me and made me want to play the whole game to see where it would go! It was pretty bare bones (and maybe that's why it worked so well), but the opening cinematic was just super captivating (I'm really into time travel stories and paradoxes and meeting past/future versions of yourself etc) and the art was fantastic. And the game starts you off right away with this plan to use your time machine for the first time. So you're experiencing it for the first time along with your character and it just...just a fantastic start to a game. Maybe the whole game wouldn't have turned out so cool (because being so bare bones your imagination just goes wild) but man did it make an impression. Best AGI demo ever made IMO.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on April 13, 2017, 01:30:00 PM
Hello pabuslem, thx for the compliment. I am almost done with the next version of WinAGI - just polishing up a few new added features and tracking down miscellaneous bugs as I find them. If you've had a chance to do much with the last version (1.1.22), I would love to get any feedback on it, in case you've uncovered something I haven't.

For me, my 'return' to AGI honestly is driven mostly by moving from 'kids in the house' to 'kids in college, and eventually on their own'. I wonder if that might be true with some of the rest of you. Anyway, after a long hiatus, I've been spending a lot of time relearning what I used to know, and remembering how much I enjoyed it. I never did write an AGI game myself, but it's still on my to-do list.

I'll post a link to a beta version of WinAGI 1.2.1 soon.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: AGKorson on April 13, 2017, 01:58:31 PM
I just want to say again that I'm really impressed with the WinAGI help file. I've been using it as the go to place for checking how things work in AGI. It's far more detailed with its explanations of the AGI commands than other sources, and what it says I've been verifying against the interpreter and the original source code fragments and so far it has been spot on.

Nice to know it's useful. I spent a lot of work on that back in the day, mostly by disassembling the interpreters. If there are still questions about how things work, I still have all my disassembly notes, and can usually find answers pretty quickly (depending on nature of question of course!) Oddly enough, I kind of enjoy the process of digging answers out of the assembly code.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 13, 2017, 03:01:35 PM
A while ago, I managed to find and download "King's Quest IV" AGI version. I always thought that was one of the darkest and more complex games in the series and I like to see their logics to learn a little bit more about its programming. Another great game to "dissect" in order to learn is "Gold Rush!".

Yeah, those two AGI games were always the two I admired from a technical point of view.

I like point & click games, but AGI games have such a charm for me... Maybe it's just nostalgia, I dunno. Anyway, it's great to see that there is still some interest in the AGI engine and games!    :)

Definitely nostalgia for me, but I love nostalgia. Everything I spend time on these days seems to be nostalgic.

I like a lot of point & click games as well. I was thinking about this recently, with the 30 year anniversary of Maniac Mansion in mind, and spent a while reading up on and looking at the original Commodore 64 version of Maniac Mansion. It wasn't controlled by a mouse but rather by joystick and/or keyboard. So basically those that didn't have a joystick (which would have been rare, but I'm guessing a lot of people chose not to use the joystick with this game) would have been moving the cursor around with keys on their keyboard. The feel and appearance of the movement of the cursor in this mode isn't much different from how the Manhunter games work. They're basically point and click games. - Made me start to wonder whether an AGI port of Maniac Mansion could be written. If it could, using the cursor movement technique in Manhunter, then AGI could have produced a game like the C64 Maniac Mansion well before the release of Maniac Mansion.

Obviously the screen scrolling is the big thing missing from AGI though.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 13, 2017, 03:11:41 PM
For me, my 'return' to AGI honestly is driven mostly by moving from 'kids in the house' to 'kids in college, and eventually on their own'. I wonder if that might be true with some of the rest of you. Anyway, after a long hiatus, I've been spending a lot of time relearning what I used to know, and remembering how much I enjoyed it. I never did write an AGI game myself, but it's still on my to-do list.

My return was back in 2010, although I have encountered a few busy periods along the way. I seem to be able to find spare time a few evenings each week these days. My kids are still home, but it probably was after they grew up a bit that I started finding more time. Also a change in the type of employer I work for. No such thing as overtime at the moment.

I get the feeling that you might be older than me then. Someone asked how old everyone was on here back last year some time. I think I was the oldest to reply to that thread. See if you can find that thread and confirm.   :)

I'll post a link to a beta version of WinAGI 1.2.1 soon.

Looking forward to it.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 13, 2017, 03:19:41 PM
(I'm really into time travel stories and paradoxes and meeting past/future versions of yourself etc) and the art was fantastic. And the game starts you off right away with this plan to use your time machine for the first time.

I'll have to check that one out. I'm also very much in to time travel and time loop stories, i.e. movies, books, and games. One of my favourite graphic adventure games on the mobile is a time travel one. Have you tried The Silent Age? I love time travel puzzles, like in Day of the Tentacle.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: MusicallyInspired on April 13, 2017, 04:31:43 PM
I haven't tried that. I don't play much mobile games, though.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Collector on April 13, 2017, 04:42:48 PM
One of my favorite time loop stories is the Stargate SG1 episode "Window of Opportunity (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0709218/?ref_=fn_tt_tt_7)". Quite amusing and engaging with superb writing. A good short is the 1990 film "12:01 PM (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098962/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1)" with Kurtwood Smith.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: MusicallyInspired on April 13, 2017, 06:14:41 PM
Obviously Back to the Future is high on my list of great time travel stories, but really it was kind of the movie that got me into time travel stuff to begin with. I owe it all to BTTF. My favourite TV episode would probably be Star Trek Voyager's Relativity or TNG's Cause and Effect or even Time Squared. Window of Opportunity was a great episode though lol.

Sorry, don't mean to hijack the thread.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Collector on April 13, 2017, 08:51:46 PM
Well for TNG there is also Yesterday's Enterprise, which is also somewhat important to the series' overall story arc.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: MusicallyInspired on April 13, 2017, 09:41:43 PM
Yeah but it's not so much about time travel as it is alternate reality. Which is cool too. The season 6 Worf episode Parallels is another great one.

And now we have officially hijacked the thread. Slightly on topic, I've always wanted to take a Star Trek episode and make it into an adventure game somehow. I started making frameworks for such things with making an AGI sprite for Data, giving the SCI0 template game's Ego every Star Trek uniform I could think of, and making that 8-bit Enterprise D bridge for SCI1.1. I wish I could actually finish this stuff. I'm just not as talented as an actual artist so it only comes in spurts of inspiration and motivation. Same with Heir To The Empire SCI with my Thrawn sprites (even though I'm convincing myself that is just an art exercise and not an actual game). It's actually nice that AGI seems to be going through a bit of a resurgence because AGI art is much easier to make and I've never tried an AGI game before. I skipped right over it because I was more interested in seeing SCI get off the ground. So I missed that whole magical AGI fangame scene.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Collector on April 14, 2017, 10:35:20 AM
It's actually nice that AGI seems to be going through a bit of a resurgence because AGI art is much easier to make and I've never tried an AGI game before.
With modern AGI IDEs we could have something to entice potential users. AGI might be a good stepping stone to SCI.

I skipped right over it because I was more interested in seeing SCI get off the ground. So I missed that whole magical AGI fangame scene.
I did the same.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Nicktatorship on April 14, 2017, 06:43:52 PM
I was around for some of early AGI, somewhere between the AGDS stuff being found by the community but before Peter Kelly released a version of AGI Studio. Not sure how long I was working on The Lost Planet before doing any kind of release (there may have been a weird 0.01b version as I first made anything). For me AGI came at a time where I was trying to create an adventure game in Allegro and some C variant, but this was a way to actually make something with a feel similar to what I'd grown up with.

I knew SCI was being researched but making games with it didn't seem imminent at the time. After some taste of a SCUMM-ish interface thanks to AGI Mouse, and then the difference that 256 colours brought, I foolishly decided to throw in with AGS, which was a lot more work for a solo non-artist. I thought about going back to AGI a few times, but found all of my backups of what I'd been working on in AGI were gone. Strangely I *do* still have my AGS backups for The Lost Planet which was never much more some screens and an interface, so, very strange turn of events in total.

I did go through periods of nostalgia, where I would search around, but could rarely find more than broken mirrors, especially after the "Ultimate AGI/SCI" site moved and became less a thing. It was a few years back that I did find a playthrough of TLP on YouTube, and a running copy on archive.org, but it was never the complicated mess of a solution I remembered best, and only this past week found *that*, setting right a bit of memory.

Still deciding if I'm "back" but tools and such are definitely familiar. While I know I could try SCI instead, it does feel like i've got unfinished business with the state of my past AGI gamey stuff.

Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: pabuslem on April 17, 2017, 09:30:52 AM
Definitely nostalgia for me, but I love nostalgia. Everything I spend time on these days seems to be nostalgic.

Lance, but what's not to love about nostalgia? I think all of us spend time on nostalgic stuff to some degree.

I've been a gamer since I was about six or seven, on the Atari console. I'm 40 now and I'm the father of a six year old boy and a toddler, so I don't have too much spare time for gaming, but, man, I love it.

Unlike many of you who have a background in engineering, computer science and programming, I'm a freaking journalist, which means that what most of you can do in 10 minutes takes me 3 hours or more. I'm also a Chilean, so my mother language is Spanish. My name is Patricio Abusleme.

But since I love this, I try to fight my limitations and overcome my lack of technical skills. In 2013, I build a gaming computer, quite an enjoyable experience for me. I enjoy games like shooters and what they call "action/adventure" games nowadays, like the "Assassin's Creed" saga and the "Batman: Arkham" games. Oh, I also love RPGs, like the "Dragon Age", "Mass Effect" and "The Witcher" sagas.

I became a big fan of Sierra and LucasArts' adventure games in the mid eighties and early nineties, but I came to the AGI fan scene a little late, around 2005, when many people were already migrating to AGS. Last night I played the demo of a game called "Kathy Rain" and I found it quite decent. Back in the day, I also translated "Conquest of Camelot" into Spanish and collaborated with two guys from Argentina to translate the VGA remake of "Quest for Glory I" into Spanish.

When I found the AGI tools, I became particularly interested in the coding of the games. Three or four years ago I managed to program a 3 room "game" as kind of a greeting card to my wife as a birthday gift (I actually completed it about two months after her birthday) and I can't believe I don't have a copy of it. I had it on a flash drive that I seem to have misplaced.

Anyway, I'm trying to learn some programming basics through courses on Internet now. I'd still like to make an AGI game someday. Fooling around with AGI Studio and WinAGI, I've found that I can manage sprites fairly well. Of course, I might need more help and dedication to make the rooms, music and coding.
 
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 17, 2017, 03:22:33 PM
Lance, but what's not to love about nostalgia? I think all of us spend time on nostalgic stuff to some degree.

Totally agree.

I've been a gamer since I was about six or seven, on the Atari console. I'm 40 now and I'm the father of a six year old boy and a toddler, so I don't have too much spare time for gaming, but, man, I love it.

I've been an adventure gamer since about the age of 11, originally on the VIC 20. I'm nearly 42 and the father of two girls aged 14 and 10. When the toddler grows up I'm guessing you'll find a bit more time. That is how it is with me. The girls keep themselves busy a lot of the time.

Unlike many of you who have a background in engineering, computer science and programming, I'm a freaking journalist, which means that what most of you can do in 10 minutes takes me 3 hours or more. I'm also a Chilean, so my mother language is Spanish. My name is Patricio Abusleme.

It takes me a long time as well. Perhaps not the coding, but an AGI picture can take me many hours, and I wrote the picture editor I'm using! , so I should really be able to make it easier for myself.

But since I love this, I try to fight my limitations and overcome my lack of technical skills. In 2013, I build a gaming computer, quite an enjoyable experience for me. I enjoy games like shooters and what they call "action/adventure" games nowadays, like the "Assassin's Creed" saga and the "Batman: Arkham" games. Oh, I also love RPGs, like the "Dragon Age", "Mass Effect" and "The Witcher" sagas.

I built what would probably be classed a gaming machine a few years ago. I don't play a lot of games though, and certainly not games that require the kind of power I'd put in to the machine. Graphics adventures are about the maximum demand its going to get.

I became a big fan of Sierra and LucasArts' adventure games in the mid eighties and early nineties, but I came to the AGI fan scene a little late, around 2005, when many people were already migrating to AGS. Last night I played the demo of a game called "Kathy Rain" and I found it quite decent. Back in the day, I also translated "Conquest of Camelot" into Spanish and collaborated with two guys from Argentina to translate the VGA remake of "Quest for Glory I" into Spanish.

I've never played Kathy Rain but I've been thinking about getting it on my phone for a while now.

When I found the AGI tools, I became particularly interested in the coding of the games. Three or four years ago I managed to program a 3 room "game" as kind of a greeting card to my wife as a birthday gift (I actually completed it about two months after her birthday) and I can't believe I don't have a copy of it. I had it on a flash drive that I seem to have misplaced.

Yeah, it's so sad to lose AGI creations like that, as I described in a post to another thread earlier today.

Anyway, I'm trying to learn some programming basics through courses on Internet now. I'd still like to make an AGI game someday. Fooling around with AGI Studio and WinAGI, I've found that I can manage sprites fairly well. Of course, I might need more help and dedication to make the rooms, music and coding.

Something that has been simmering away in the depths of my mind for a while is a way of programming AGI Logics using something similar to the Scratch programming blocks. Actually what I had in mind was an online visual programming environment like Scratch that was very, very similar to AGI in what blocks it provided and the main goal would be to support an export to AGI feature. I was thinking that this would be the best chance of creating some interest in AGI again. Things like Scratch, Snap, Hopscotch and Tynker are quite popular for kids and are now included in a lot of school computer science lessons. Wouldn't it be great for an animated adventure game visual programming web site that has an AGI based design to reach that kind of popularity? If it was done right, it could well be possible. People seem to have a thirst at the moment for visual programming tools that target children.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: lance.ewing on April 17, 2017, 03:55:28 PM
I did go through periods of nostalgia, where I would search around, but could rarely find more than broken mirrors, especially after the "Ultimate AGI/SCI" site moved and became less a thing. It was a few years back that I did find a playthrough of TLP on YouTube, and a running copy on archive.org, but it was never the complicated mess of a solution I remembered best, and only this past week found *that*, setting right a bit of memory.

A couple of months back I discovered that The Ruby Cast demo was on archive.org as well. Amazing what turns up on there, and great to know now that The Ruby Cast is preserved in that form.

Still deciding if I'm "back" but tools and such are definitely familiar. While I know I could try SCI instead, it does feel like i've got unfinished business with the state of my past AGI gamey stuff.

Well I guess you are "back" whenever you post a message on here. That's kind of how I view it. I got lost in a bit of VIC 20 nostalgia at the start of last year. I spent literally 6 months staring at a microscopic photo of the silicon layers of the video chip used in the VIC 20 and was trying to reverse engineer the schematic. Made quite a bit of progress while I was at it, perhaps covering about a sixth of the surface. I guess I was away from the AGI community over that time but made another return in the second half of last year.

The Ruby Cast is certainly unfinished business for me. I will eventually focus enough to continue working on that.
Title: Re: WinAGI is Back
Post by: Nicktatorship on April 17, 2017, 08:17:39 PM
A couple of months back I discovered that The Ruby Cast demo was on archive.org as well. Amazing what turns up on there, and great to know now that The Ruby Cast is preserved in that form.

Isn't it cool? Totally unexpected, too.

Well I guess you are "back" whenever you post a message on here. That's kind of how I view it. I got lost in a bit of VIC 20 nostalgia at the start of last year. I spent literally 6 months staring at a microscopic photo of the silicon layers of the video chip used in the VIC 20 and was trying to reverse engineer the schematic. Made quite a bit of progress while I was at it, perhaps covering about a sixth of the surface. I guess I was away from the AGI community over that time but made another return in the second half of last year.

The Ruby Cast is certainly unfinished business for me. I will eventually focus enough to continue working on that.

Yeah, I suppose I am. Spent a bit of time over the weekend trying to retrace original ideas, plan how a 'remastered/restored' version of The Lost Planet might fit into the wider setting/story (that's changed a bit since I originally did the game), plotting out required rooms, how the game might differ, etc etc. I guess that's kind of telling.

That'd be great to see The Ruby Cast continue - I remember it somewhat (though haven't retouched it since), and given it was around before AGI Studio, it's one of those little hallmarks of what it was like back then.