FIFA Soccer 2005, Xbox style

Ehey it\'s a bugarlier this month, I decided to do away with my PC version of FIFA 2005 [I’m facing the ever-shrinking harddrive-dilemma] and afford myself the Xbox version. Playing it the other moment I ran into the situation as shown in the picture: one of my (computer-controlled) players trying to get the ball in an area where he was not supposed to be. It had me laughing, not because it’s not really funny to laugh about programming mistakes: it just reminded me of those 8-bit games I played when I was younger. That devilish “8 sprites on a line” problem that hampered early days computers (I hear it was 4 sprites for lower end computers like the C64 and the Spectrum). Talking about those sprites per row: there’s a great technical explanation of this ‘old problem’ over at Wikipedia.

However sprite bandwidth is limited to max. 4 sprites per scanline. I.e. if there are more than 4 sprites next to each other horizontally, then the rest will disappear. In that case only the sprites with the highest priority (lowest position in the spritelist) are shown. If necessary, games often attack this problem by rotating sprite priorities. This way, every video frame a different set of sprites disappears in areas where there are more than 4 per scanline. Instead of disappearing entirely, the sprites will flicker (sprite multiplexing).

Note the section above is valid for the MSX-1. MSX-2 computers had a Yamaha V9938 graphics processor, which I presume was based on the TI one), which ‘upped’ it to 8 sprites! WOW! (ED:Uh: enjoy the MSX-2 graphics processor specification here. Extra note: the processor was designed by ASCII Corp., Yamaha and Microsoft). Yo, Alfons you still should have that MSX book on graphics programming somewhere!

It’s still fun playing, naturally. I’m not a soccer fan at all. I should be playing more chess games.

This entry was posted in Ordinateurs, Those-wonder-years. Bookmark the permalink.