News about Amstrad CPC, PCW, Notepad NC100 NC150 NC200, PDA600 and also Amstrad PC






T2022 demo for the Amstrad GX4000 or CPC Plus by Cyrille GOURET

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T2022 is a demo for the Amstrad GX4000 console or the Amstrad CPC+ computer by Cyrille GOURET. The T2022 demo is available on Youtube and the facebook groupe Amstradiens.




Connecting a Raspberry PI on Amstrad CPC from CPC-Cplink to Soyuz (by Abalore)

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There are actually two fonctionnal ways to connect a Raspberry PI to your Amstrad CPC :

There is also another WIP project by Zhulien : the CPC / Raspberry Pi Bridge Card, but for more recent informations you must read the thread Raspberry PI on CPC.




Building the World's Newest Amstrad CPC 464 by Noel Llopis

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Noel Llopis has made another very interesting video : the making of a totally new Amstrad CPC 464 from a new PCB made by Bob's Bits Replica Boards.

For this first try, he didnt try to add more RAMs, ROMs or existing expansions, for the future maybe ?

Other videos with the hastag #janstrad will be released by other creators with the same idea to create some new old hardware





Donjon, an Amstrad CPC game in 10 lines of basic by Omebrou Corp.

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Omebrou Corp. (Vetea on Itch.IO) has released an Amstrad CPC games in 10 lines of Basic : Donjon, to play it use arrows to move, and space to open chests or fight ennemies.

Without emulator, you can execute any Amstrad CPC basic program inside Visual Studio code with the extension Amstrad Basic Helper.

You can find a disk image on facebook group les Amstradiens, or here is the basic listing :

10 Mode 1:ink 0,0:border 0:ink 1,26:ink 2,6:ink 3,24:dim t(30,30):pen 2:locate 17,13:? "":for i=1 to 25:for j=1 to 25:v=1:randomize time:t(i,j)=int(rnd*4)+3:q=t(i,j):border j:next:next:x=12:y=25: U2$=chr$(221):U1$=chr$(220):U$=chr$(207)

20 T$=chr$(8):Y$=chr$(10):a=1:xx=int(rnd*20)+1:yy=int(rnd*20)+1:t(xx,yy)=10:cls:P1$=chr$(143):while(a<6):a=a+1: F$=F$+P1$+P1$+P1$+y$+t$+t$+t$:D$=D$+U$+U1$+y$+t$+t$+t$:S$=S$+U2$+U$+y$+t$:wend:border 0:if m1=0 then Ch=int(rnd*22):t=0 else CH=99

30 Z$=p1$+y$+t$+P1$+y$+t$+chr$(212)+y$+t$:E$=p1$+y$+t$+P1$+y$+t$+chr$(213)+y$+t$: C$=chr$(222)+U$+chr$(223)+y$+t$+t$+t$+P1$+chr$(232)+P1$+y$+t$+t$+t$+P1$+P1$+P1$:M1$=chr$(235):pen 3:locate 15,10:? f$:locate 18,10:?f$:if jj>=1 then border 6:q=q-jj:jj=0

40 if CH<>99 then m1=0:M$=chr$(225)+y$+t$+t$+chr$(151)+M1$+chr$(182)+y$+t$+t$+chr$(191): M2$=M$:l=0:TR=CH:if CH<=2 then M$="":M2$="" else if CH<=5 then C$="":M$="" else if CH<=7 then C$="":M2$="" else if CH<=9 then C$=""else C$="":M$=""

:M2$=""

50 while(b<6):b=b+1:pen 3:locate 13,9+b:? D$:locate 21,9+b:? s$:wend:x$=chr$(245): O$=P1$+P1$+y$+t$+t$+P1$+P1$:pen 1:for i=1 to 6:locate 17,16-i:? h$:next:if m1=2 then m1=0:C$="" else m1=0:if TR>2 or CH=99 then c$=""

60 R$=M$+M2$:MY=(INKEY(0)=0 AND y>1 and O$<>"" and R$="")-(INKEY(2)=0 AND y<25 and x$<>"" and R$=""):MX=(INKEY(8)=0 AND x>1 and z$<>"" and R$="")-(INKEY(1)=0 AND x<25 and e$<>"" and R$=""):L=MX+MY:x=x+MX:Y=Y+MY:H=T(X,Y):if INKEY(47)=0 and ff=0 then ff=1

70 randomize time:border 0:t=t+1-(t and 8):pen 1:locate 1,1:?"SANTE ":pen 2:for i=1 to q:locate i+6,1:?chr$(228);" ":next:pen 1:locate 17,18:?C$:if Y=1 then O$="" else if X=1 then z$="" else if X=25 then e$="" else if Y=25 then x$=""

80 if h$<>"" then end else if ff then ff=0:jj=0:if M$<>"" and m1=0 then M$="":m1=1:jj=t/6:SOUND 1,0,25,12,,,25 else if M2$<>"" and m1=0 then M2$="":m1=1:jj=t/6:SOUND 1,0,25,12,,,25 else if C$<>"" and m1=0 then C$="":Q=Q+1:m1=2:SOUND 2,100,7,15:border 26

90 if Q<=1 then clear:pen 1:goto 10 else locate 17,22:? x$:pen 2:locate 15,16:?M$:locate 20,15:?M2$:if h=4 then E$="":Z$="" else if h=5 then O$="" else if h=6 then O$="":E$="" else if h=7 then E$="":O$="" else if h=10 then O$="":h$=chr$(151)+chr$(157)

100 sound 3,600-rnd*200,q/2,7:pen 0:locate 17,13:? O$:pen 0:locate 12,15:? Z$:locate 23,15:? E$:while (l=0 and M1=0):randomize time:goto 60:wend:cls:b=1:a=1:F$="":S$="":D$="":ww=0:goto 20




Melkhior's mansion by Richard Jordan for PC is available

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Richard Jordan has released Melkhior's mansion for windows, which is a 3D isometric remake of Atic Atac. The game will also be available for ZX Spectrum Next and 128 Kb.




An Amstrad CPC DDI-1 (for 464) modded with a memory expansion by Zaxxon

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Tjjq44 on System.cfg has modded an original Amstrad CPC DDI-1 disk controller for 464 with a memory expansion by Zaxxon, see the photos below and a video on youtube of the Amstrad CPC 464 loading programs from the DDI-1.

It's necessary to unsolder the 50 pins connector in order to slide in the 512 Kb memory expansion by Zaxxon.

A micro switch let you activate or not the memory expansion.

A wire is used to bridge the +5v of the Amstrad CPC and +5v of the interface so you don't rely on FD-1's power supply anymore. Initially, there's a capacitor between those two pins, you can remove or leave it, it doesn't matter. (Amstrad had done this at the time so that when the user turned off his floppy drive the CPC behaved as if the extension was not present, it avoided having to disconnect the interface or type |TAPE as soon as he wanted to use a tape).

The pins 2,4,6 and 14 have been removed inside each 34 pin connector so that the +5v does not end up on the drive pins. (be careful when opening the connectors, the plastic can break easily).

The 2 small keyed lugs on each 34-pin connector have been filed down to allow connection of any type of drive: FD-1, 3.5 inches classic, gotek...

A switch makes swapping possible between drives, A becomes B and vice versa, practical if you have a gotek and a 3 inch connected simultaneously. For the drives to be recognized, it'll be necessary to ensure that the drive at the end of the ribbon cable has its "drive select" jumper set to 0 and the one in the middle to 1 (no need to do this on a FD-1 , it will respond in any case, its location on the ribbon cable determines whether it is A or B).

The original amsdos ROM has been replaced by a 32 kB amsdos/parados ROM (soldered without stand due to insufficient room). The choice is made by setting pin 27 to 0v (amsdos) or 5v (parados). Currently it is hardwired to 0v because I no longer have micro switch on hand. (However it's not very serious, parados was very useful in order to have 720k of storage per physical diskette, with gotek storage is almost unlimited so we don't care much).

front of the modded Amstrad CPC DDI-1

back of the modded Amstrad CPC DDI-1

side of the modded Amstrad CPC DDI-1




LLum by Ivan AVILA, an Amstrad CPC game (after Dogfight and 8bit Wars)

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Last game by Ivan AVILA is LLum, it has been written with the 8bp library in basic. LLum is a Lumines clone for Amstrad CPC. Try to make a four square by rotating and aligning 2×2 blocks. Squares of one color will be erased when the time line passes over them.

His other games also written with 8BP are Dogfight (shoot them up in 2020) and 8bit wars a tower defense in 2021 (CPCRetroDev).




PunyInform v3.4 by Fredrik Ramsberg and Johan Berntsson to write text adventure games

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PunyInform v3.4 by Fredrik Ramsberg and Johan Berntsson is a library written in Inform 6 to create adventure game (pure text, no graphic support contrary to DAAD) using the Z-machine virtual machine which will run on 8bit computers (or more recent computers too). PunyInform has a parser, knowing of common verbs and a framework to write adventure games.

PunyInform is based on the Inform 6 library written by Graham Nelson. Its goal is to make easily adventure games in Inform 6, with a manual describing the differences between the official library and PunyInform..

Games using PunyInform can be compiled in z3, z5 and z8 format (z3 being the best format for 8bit computers, other formats have more features). Compared to the Inform 6 library, it means that there is no support for the Glulx virtual machine but z3 format is important as Inform 6 doesnt support it.

To compile games written with PunyInform, you should use the Inform 6 compiler maintained by David Kinder. Binaries are available on if-archive. PunyInform needs Inform v6.35 (or more).

They are tutorials to write adventure game with PunyInform (end of the page) and all the documentation including a 8 page cheat sheet (quick reference)..

To try your game after compilation, you can use WinFrotz by David Kinder, to create map easily you can use Trizbort.

And finally, to create an Amstrad CPC and PCW disk image, you will have to use the Puddle BuildTools.




Quigs to develop SymbOS applications (Amstrad CPC, PCW, MSX and Elan Enterprise)

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The Quigs IDE is a suite of tools and editors to help developers create applications and other media for SymbOS.

Its creator and developer TrebMint aka Rob Buckley started to develop it at the end of 2004, when the SymbOS project has been continued. Together with the appearance of the SYMBiFACE in 2004 Quigs (ex-SymStudio) made the first HD-based full screen videos possible ever seen on CPC. With Quigs you can create forms, code, graphics and even video and export it to the CPC, MSX, PCW and Elan Enterprise version of SymbOS.

To resume, Quigs is a :

  • Powerful form construction kit
  • Code editor and assembler/compiler
  • Graphic and video manager
  • HTML and Richtext converter

in a comfortable PC-based integrated development environment!

There is an updated documentation in english of Symbos 3.1.



Just Get 9 patch 2, a reflexion game for Amstrad CPC by cpcitor and the other days

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Just Get 9 is atile-based puzzle game for the Amstrad CPC. If you like 2048, tetris, coloris, color flood, you’ll like it. You can visit the Itch.IO page of Just get 9 to download the latest version of this excellent game (patch 2).



SymbOS v3.1 by Prodatron is available for Amstrad CPC, PCW, MSX and EP

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SymbOS v3.1 by Prodatron, the multitasking operating system for Amstrad CPC and PCW, MSX and Elan Enterprise can be downloaded now.

There is an updated documentation in english of Symbos 3.1.

boot image of SymbOS v3 by Prodatron for Amstrad CPC

Release notes for 3.1 [30.12.2021]

Extensive hardware support

- Graphics9000 for CPC and EP: The V9990 based graphic card with its MSX origin, probably the most powerful one for 8bit systems, can be used on both the Amstrad CPC and the Enterprise 64/128 now, too. Resolutions of up to 1024x212 with 16 colours and fast graphic output is possible now on nearly all supported SymbOS platforms. This makes it possible to run about 50 different applications on three different platforms with this graphic card.
- SYMBiFACE 3 for CPC and EP: USB-mouse, realtime clock and USB memory stick with up to 2TB is supported directly in the operating system on both the Amstrad CPC and the Enterprise 64/128. Additional features of this extensive all-in-one hardware by TMT Logic can be used in specialized applications.
- PCW with uIDE and HxC direct access support: The Amstrad PCW is now able to access huge mass storage devices as well with sizes of up to 2TB. The uIDE8 interface by Jon B is supported for fast CF card access, which makes even video playback possible on the PCW. HxC direct SD card access is available as well.
- Graphics9000 with hardware mouse pointer: All G9K versions of SymbOS do now use the hardware cursor in bitmap mode, which makes a fast and flicker free mouse pointer possible.
- M4Board network RTC support: The NTP based Realtime clock of the M4Board is supported in SymbOS CPC.

Dynamic driver system for CPC and EP

- Hardware autodetection: During the booting process SymbOS CPC and EP is autodetecting all available and supported HID, RTC and mass storage hardware.
- Hardware autoselection: Available hardware will be autoselected with prioritisation of newer devices.
- CPC 1MB support: Memory expansions with 1MB or more are supported again. SymbOS will automatically switch to 1MB support during booting, if more than 576KB Ram are detected, so there is no need for a seperate version anymore.
- Minimal config for 128K systems: If SymbOS detects a system with only 128K, all additional features (extended desktop, screen saver, desktop background picture) will be deactivated automatically during booting. You will always have 31K or more free on your system.

SymAmp with advanced audio hardware support

- New driver system: A new driver-like system for including and managing hardware and sound module support has been added to SymAmp. All detected hardware is listed in a new dialogue window where you can select your prefered sound device.
- Enterprise 64/128 Dave AY emulation: The AY emulation by IstvanV and Geco is now official part of SymAmp and can play Soundtrakker 128, Starkos and PT3 modules with the Dave soundchip of the Enterprise 64/128.
- MP3 for nearly all platforms: MP3MSX and compatible sound cards (SE-ONE, SYMBiFACE 3) are now supported on the Amstrad CPC and Enterprise 64/128 as well.
- CPC PlayCity 6 channel Dual PSG: Finally we have PlayCity support integrated in the official release version of SymAmp.
- MSX Darky 6 channel Dual PSG: 6channel PT3s can be played on the MSX with the Darky catridge.
- PCW Dk'tronics AY board: SymAmp is now able to play Soundtrakker 128, Starkos and PT3 modules on the Amstrad PCW as well, if a Dk'tronics AY hardware expansion is connected.

Kernel improvements


- Memory management: The memory management has been optimized again. The system now searches for free transfer area space starting at the very end of the memory, when loading an application. This reduces memory fragmentation again.
- Relocation table handling: During loading an application the temporary relocation table is loaded to any free memory location, which can be in any 64K ram bank. This makes it possible to load applications which are using the full available 63K of one bank.

Graphics9000 fullscreen game mode


- P1 patternmode support: The Quigs IDE is now supporting screen mode P1, which provides two pattern layers, 127 sprites and up to 61 colours with a resolution of 256x212. Flappy Bird is the first game, which is using this and running on all supported platforms (Amstrad CPC, MSX, Enterprise 64/128)
- Graphics9000 interrupt handling: The kernel supports the handling of V9990 line interrupts. This can be used for enabling splitscreens in fullscreen games and will be supported by the Quigs IDE soon.

Desktop Manager

- Context menus: This new features allows an application to open a context menu at any place on the screen.
- Frame resizing and movement: The user can resize and move a dotted frame on the screen. This makes screen area selections possible.
- Modal window unclick events: The GUI sends an event, if the user is clicking outside of a modal window. This can be used for creating own complex dropdown menus.
- Transparent bitmaps: a new graphic control allows bitmaps with a transparent colour (0).
- CPC mode 1 textoutput speed: The speed of the textoutput routines has been increased on the Amstrad CPC in mode 1.

New applications since 3.0


- SymbOS E-Mail: The full functional E-Mail client is now available for SymbOS 3.1 (by EdoZ, using Quigs).
- Flappy Bird: This is the first game which is using the new Quigs IDE feature for creating fullscreen games on the Graphics9000 graphic card (by EdoZ & Trebmint, using Quigs).
- Sokoban: A very advanced implementation of the classic Sokoban game.
- ChessSym: The first chess application with a strong AI for SymbOS (by Trebmint, using Quigs).
- Doom: Play Doom in SymbOS - even multiple times! This 3D egoshooter has been ported from a TI-calculator to SymbOS (by zDoom team, NYYRIKKI, Prodatron)
- 2048: Another well-known game is now available for SymbOS as well (by Trebmint, using Quigs)
- DiskDumper: This dumps a complete floppy disc to a DSK file, used by Amstrad CPC emulators.
- VDP screen adjustment tool: Adjust the screen position and screen frequency of your MSX VDP or Graphics9000.
- Hexe: Simple Hex monitor and editor.

Miscellaneous

- Bug fixing: Bugs have been removed as usual, including the boot logo on the Amstrad CPC and PCW and the joystick handling on the Enterprise 64/128.



CPCemu v2.4, an Amstrad CPC emulator by Rainer Loritz is available

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Rainer has released CPCemu v2.4. It's available for MacOS, Android, iOS, Linux (x86_64 and ARM, in particular on Raspberry Pi) and Windows.

New version features :

  • Original (virtual) CPC keyboard in 4 different languages. Click/touch near the bottom border to get it
  • Loading firmware ROMs (0 and 255) from the running emulator (setup menu)
  • Upgrade to the latest SDL version (2.0.18). If you don't get the virtual keyboard, the on-screen joystick and the graphical main menu on Linux (Intel and ARM/Raspberry) I recommend upgrading your installed SDL version
  • Correction of many errors (M4 file names, M4 sockets, sound output, restart of emulation, error tolerance, screen layout, Z80 R register)


WIP Tetris DotBAS by Francesc ALCAUCER for Amstrad CPC

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Tetris DotBAS is the latest WIP project by Francesc ALCAUCER after these two programs also written in Locomotive Basic :