rodneylives
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 7:46 am

Interesting Rampart error

Tue Oct 16, 2018 2:39 pm

First time posting here, please be gentle....

A couple of days ago I encountered a fairly weird bug in Atari's Rampart. It happens in the 3-player trackball version; I don't know if it happens in the 2p joystick or Japanese versions. I've gotten it to happen twice now, I've got screenshots and a recording of it in action, and I've got a savestate of the bug happening. I can supply any and all of these things if you just tell me where to upload them. This bug was observed in MAMEUI64 0.200, but I've checked the changelogs for 0.201 and 0.202 and neither of them mention the rampart driver. I can investigate more if you like, but it takes a good half-hour to get far enough into the game to trigger the bug.

These actions cause the bug to happen for me. Here's what i do to reproducing it (this might not be the only way it happens):
  • Start a single-player game as Blue Player (player 1).
  • When I do it, I pick Veteran difficulty.
  • Play the game normally until level 4, the one where you choose between peninsula maps. I pick the right one for this to occur.
  • When you start the board and are asked to select a Home Castle, pick the lower-right one.
Result: The game will erect a starting wall around the castle as normal. At first everything seems normal, but in fact the map visible on screen and the working map in the game's RAM don't match. The hidden layout is of the J-shaped "Beginner" map.
This means:
  • The game can only generate up to two ships per board. Because of this, it makes for a very long, but very easy, board.
  • The ships can sail around over the land, which looks funny at the very least.
  • You can build walls over the visible water, but some parts of the land actually cannot be built upon. The movements of the cursor show the general building range.
  • The ships drop off Grunts that move over the water, which shouldn't be possible.
  • Interestingly, the castles are placed according to the visible map. I always pick bottom-right, which is a valid pick and allows for semi-normal play. It takes a lot of effort to get this far into Rampart, it's quite a difficult game, so I haven't tested it more exhaustively.
  • After maybe 15-20 or so boards, wiping out the enemy two ships at a time, the game will finally declare victory and move to the next (and last) board. There, I picked the right-hand castle. Apparently a similar error occurs on that map, but because the game is blocked from building its initial wall around the castle, it locks up there when the timer reaches 00.
Imgur post with screenshots (taken with F12) of the bug in action: https://imgur.com/gallery/laN5bAn I've also uploaded one image here. I tried to upload the savestates but the board doesn't seem to like .sta files?

P.S. While I'm here, since forever this game has seemed like it has the digitized sound too loud. I played this game a lot in arcades back in the day and don't remember the drums overwhelming the music. I've also played this a lot in the emulated Midway Arcade Treasures compilation and the drums are too loud there as well, although maybe a little less so.
Attachments
0018.png
0018.png (8.86 KiB) Viewed 102 times

User avatar
Tafoid
Posts: 129
Joined: Thu Nov 06, 2014 12:50 pm
Location: Vermont USA
Contact: Website

Re: Interesting Rampart error

Wed Oct 17, 2018 5:30 pm

rodneylives wrote:
Tue Oct 16, 2018 2:39 pm
First time posting here, please be gentle....

A couple of days ago I encountered a fairly weird bug in Atari's Rampart. It happens in the 3-player trackball version; I don't know if it happens in the 2p joystick or Japanese versions. I've gotten it to happen twice now, I've got screenshots and a recording of it in action, and I've got a savestate of the bug happening. I can supply any and all of these things if you just tell me where to upload them. This bug was observed in MAMEUI64 0.200, but I've checked the changelogs for 0.201 and 0.202 and neither of them mention the rampart driver. I can investigate more if you like, but it takes a good half-hour to get far enough into the game to trigger the bug.

These actions cause the bug to happen for me. Here's what i do to reproducing it (this might not be the only way it happens):
  • Start a single-player game as Blue Player (player 1).
  • When I do it, I pick Veteran difficulty.
  • Play the game normally until level 4, the one where you choose between peninsula maps. I pick the right one for this to occur.
  • When you start the board and are asked to select a Home Castle, pick the lower-right one.
Result: The game will erect a starting wall around the castle as normal. At first everything seems normal, but in fact the map visible on screen and the working map in the game's RAM don't match. The hidden layout is of the J-shaped "Beginner" map.
This means:
  • The game can only generate up to two ships per board. Because of this, it makes for a very long, but very easy, board.
  • The ships can sail around over the land, which looks funny at the very least.
  • You can build walls over the visible water, but some parts of the land actually cannot be built upon. The movements of the cursor show the general building range.
  • The ships drop off Grunts that move over the water, which shouldn't be possible.
  • Interestingly, the castles are placed according to the visible map. I always pick bottom-right, which is a valid pick and allows for semi-normal play. It takes a lot of effort to get this far into Rampart, it's quite a difficult game, so I haven't tested it more exhaustively.
  • After maybe 15-20 or so boards, wiping out the enemy two ships at a time, the game will finally declare victory and move to the next (and last) board. There, I picked the right-hand castle. Apparently a similar error occurs on that map, but because the game is blocked from building its initial wall around the castle, it locks up there when the timer reaches 00.
Imgur post with screenshots (taken with F12) of the bug in action: https://imgur.com/gallery/laN5bAn I've also uploaded one image here. I tried to upload the savestates but the board doesn't seem to like .sta files?

P.S. While I'm here, since forever this game has seemed like it has the digitized sound too loud. I played this game a lot in arcades back in the day and don't remember the drums overwhelming the music. I've also played this a lot in the emulated Midway Arcade Treasures compilation and the drums are too loud there as well, although maybe a little less so.

It's been detected before and is very likely some protection issues with the game with the SLAPSTIC simulation. The problem has been that people that have reported having issues in the past have not been as serious as you seem to be about providing details, save states, and other observations. Not all Devs are 'gamers' and have the required skills to progress into games like others can.

It would be worth having this logged at mametesters.org (I checked and see you recently got assigned as a Tester) with whatever information you have and would be a fantastic start to hopefully a Developer showing interest and being able to try to figure out the issue.

rodneylives
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 7:46 am

Re: Interesting Rampart error

Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:01 pm

Ah! I will go about filing the bug there now, thanks! I didn't notice the problem occurring with previous versions, maybe it's a relatively recent thing?


Return to “MAME Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest