Tyrel's Blog

Code, Flying, Tech, Automation

Jan 31, 2023

6502 NES Course by Pikuma

As I mentioned in my December post I'm doing a 6502 course on Pikuma.

I'm about 75% of the way done, and I think I need to circle back to some earlier stuff about how the PPU works, but it's super fun.

Over the holidays I was able to stop at my father's and pick up my old NES. I swapped out the ZIF connector for a new one, and cleaned up some contacts on the RCA ports, and it works great! Once I found out that it was working - I played Sesame Street ABC 123, as that's the only one I had up in my office - I ordered an EverDrive N8. That came last week.

The pictures are tall due to how I took them, so sorry I'll attach them at the end of the post.

Once I got the EverDrive N8 I made sure it worked by playing a Battletoads ROM. Battletoad tested - I then copied Atlantico.NES to my Everdrive. Atlantico is the game that Gustavo is walking us through making in the current part of the course - not a real published game. I loaded it up and HOLY COW - something I actually wrote in Assembly is running on real hardware.

If you want to watch the video, it's very simplistic at the 75% mark, this was before the Collisions chapter, and no sound yet.

The feeling of getting something running, locally, and seeing it working on screen, despite being a programmer for ~~20 years, is AMAZING. Writing code that executes on the system you grew up playing the early 90's, wow.

I do wish the CRT TV my wife had was square, things get cut off on it. I even got a remote, so I could try to fix that in the menu, alas, only picture option is brightness. (Not that I realistically thought I could scale it, CRT Pixels are only Pixels.

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