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PhrozenC, the compiler which cames from the cold by NoRecess

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PhrozenC is a C compiler for Amstrad CPC and PC by NoRecess. On PC it compiles a .C file in .ASM ready to compilewith WinAPE. On CPC the .ASM file can be compiled with Maxam.

For Amstrad CPC it exists a ROM version, a 64 Kb version (stand-alone application), 128 Ko (RSX).

PhrozenC is released with a manual (PDF-format, 33 pages), covering all the things you have to know about to start programming using PhrozenC.

There is even a small tutorial about learning C for the newcomers. Example sources are available, as also a small set of library files handling file management, graphics, memory management, string concatenation, etc..

It's version 1.0, NoRecess plans to get your feedback and provide better versions with time...

PhrozenC, C compilator for Amstrad CPC and PC screenshot  PhrozenC, C compilator for Amstrad CPC and PC screenshot  PhrozenC, C compilator for Amstrad CPC and PC screenshot



Arkos Tracker preview for ... windows

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Targhan (Arkos) has announced on the CPC_FR mailing list a preview of Arkos Tracker for windows. You can see a video of this Arkos Tracker preview on Youtube. Final version could be released in 2 or 3 weeks.

Seing the video, you can export to .WAV et .YM, and import .SKS (STarKos Tracker). The program can send the sound directly to an Amstrad CPC with a CPCBooster (I have some to sell, cant remember at the moment the price I paid for them, but they will be selled without a profit) or of course directly on the sound card of the PC.

More features given on the CPC Wiki's forum :

  • 256 patterns available
  • Each pattern is composed of 3 independent tracks
  • 512 tracks available, each being reusable in any pattern, or even several times in the same pattern
  • Each track can be transposed independently in a pattern
  • A track has a height from 1 to 128 lines, independently of the pattern that uses it
  • 255 instruments available
  • The instrument editor allows you to modify each registers of the PSG
  • Replay frequency of 13, 25, 50, 100, 150 or 300hz
  • Possibility to put "events" in your song. They can either be used to synchronize your music with your production, or trigger digidrums for exemple
  • Big news : instruments are divised into two channels : a Software, and Hardware one. These channels can be independant or dependent from each other. Allows using two waves at the same time
  • Allows you to play sound effects in a very flexible and powerful way. You can also play the SFXs without any music
  • You can import any STarKos song
  • NO SID/DMA for CPC+ for now. I may plan that...

About the Player :

  • Only 25 scanlines maximum used !
  • On top of being faster than the STarKos player, it's lighter : one and a half kb.
  • The player works on Amstrad CPC, MSX, Spectrum or Pentagon (using conditional assembling : only the necessary code is used).
  • The generated songs are very light (about as much as the STarKos song. Sometimes a bit lighter, sometimes not).
  • Can be used in Basic (call the player by yourself, or use it under interruptions), and Assembler.
  • The source of the player is given, and documented.
  • The format of the music is given. So you'll be able to create your own custom tools (conversion, new players...).
  • Fade in/out available.

About the sound effects :

  • Every instrument of your song becomes a sound effect.
  • You can play/stop a sound effect on any, or all, of the 3 channels.
  • You can choose the note, volume, speed of any triggered SFX.
  • You can add Pitch to them (useful to add randomness to the sounds, for example).
  • Sound effects are in a seperate file : you can use the same sound bank even if you change the music.


GrafX v2.1 (bitmap editor)

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An update of GrafX (v2.1) is available.

It's a bitmap paint program that allows to draw in more than 60 video resolutions (from 320x200, including most of the standard Amiga resolutions, provided your videocard knows how to handle them). It was written originally for DOS, but has been modified to use SDL and modern operating systems. Its layout is not very different from Deluxe Paint or Brilliance.



Making Amstrad CPC music on CPC or PC

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If you need to write some music for an Amstrad CPC program (either demo, game, etc...), you can do it either on an Amstrad CPC :

Or you can do it on a PC :

  • WYZTracker for windows (needs .NET v2.0) by Augusto Ruiz, an .AY (Amstrad and Spectrum) music creation utility using a pattern-based editor, spanish interface only at the moment, short english manual inside
  • Vortex Tracker II v1.0 beta 19, a Win32 PT3-editor, can load, play, edit PT1, PT2, PT3, STC, STP, SQT, ASC, PSC, PSM, FLS, GTR, FTC, FXM, AY (ZXAYAMAD) files and save them in PT3 format or in temporary text format. You can export modules into SNDH-format to play it on Atari ST, and into HOBETA (with player or without player), AY's ZXAYEMUL format, SCL or TAP to play it on Amstrad CPC ou ZX Spectrum, for more information go see Vortex tracker's website.

Also, it's possible without an emulator to listen to .YM, .AY and .AYM files with ZX Spectrum Computer Sound Chip Emulator (same address than above).

If you use other music tools, thanks to let me know so I can add informations here and in the comp.sys.amstrad.8bit FAQ).



Robotron 6128, Sewer Rat for Amstrad CPC, AMSprite for windows/linux/mac by Lachlan Keown

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Lachlan Keown, who lives in New Zealand, just released its latest Amstrad CPC production : Robotron 6128, a conversion of the classic arcade game, if you use keyboard, WASD to move and cursor keys to shoot.

He is also the author of Sewer Rat, take the cheese before the aliens does (poor aliens, eating cheese is awful).

He has also written AMSprite for windows (using .Net framework v2.0) or AMSprite for linux/mac (using MONO), which is a cross-development GUI tool to generate ready-to-use sprites and loading screens for the Amstrad CPC in assembly language (CPC+ hardware sprites supported).



Sorcery + for windows

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Antibug has ported Sorcery+ for windows with the original graphics. For the moment it's a very nice playable beta. The first level where you have to rescue several sorcerers isnt totally completed, lacking the end screen for example, and the second level where you have to kill the evil sorcerer isnt available yet.

On Antibug's main page (french) you will find his own tools for Amstrad CPC developpement.




Amstrad CPC programmation in C language

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For those who would be interested in programming applications for Amstrad CPC in C language, you have at least 3 possibilities :

  • Z88dk v1.9 with cpcrslib (Amstrad CPC library for Z88dk) : several programs including an Amstrad CPC+ demo (Phat) have been programmed with Z88dk already
  • Small Device C Compiler v2.9.0 : Contiki and the pheelone demo has been compiled with SDCC, any other program that someone would know ?
  • CCZ80 v2.07 by Emilio Guerrero. This compiler can be used for developping Amstrad CPC, ZX Spectrum and MSX programs on windows (command line application, with a GUI included). Gommy, Defensor Medieval a ZX Spectrum game has been programmed with CCZ80. There are 2 Amstrad CPC librairies usable for CCZ80 : cpcrslib (adapted from cpcrslib for Z88dk) and sprutilcpc ( included with CCZ80), but no Amstrad CPC program seems to have been programmed yet with CCZ80. If you have, let me know please.


SDCC - Small Device C Compiler v2.9.0

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Small Device C Compiler v2.9.0 is out (since 22th march 2009), it's a freeware, retargettable, optimizing ANSI - C compiler that targets the Intel 8051, Maxim 80DS390 and the Zilog Z80 based processors. Contiki (a small but modern operating system) for Amstrad CPC was compiled with SDCC. BTW, last version of contiki (v2.3.0) is out since the 27th june 2009.



GrafX v2 final version (graphical bitmap editor)

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PulkoMandy has released GrafX v2 final.

It's a bitmap paint program that allows to draw in more than 60 video resolutions (from 320x200, including most of the standard Amiga resolutions, provided your videocard knows how to handle them). It was written originally for DOS, but has been modified to use SDL and modern operating systems.

Its layout is not very different from Deluxe Paint or Brilliance, so it will be quite easy to handle it if you know at least one of these programs.



Amstrad CPC cross-development kit by Grim

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If you are still programming on Amstrad CPC, you are maybe using WinAPE. But its assembler has limitations. For example, if you want to create a .DSK, a .SNA, compile something, compact something BEFORE or AFTER assembling, it's not possible in 1 pass and 1 key press. But it's now possible with some additional software (freeware).

For more informations go to Grimaware, and for the direct link in (english, check end of page for the update) about the Amstrad CPC cross-development kit, it's there.





Blassic, an Amstrad CPC basic interpreter for windows, linux and Yopy PDA

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Blassic is a basic language interpreter for windows, linux and Yopy PDA. It can interpret Amstrad CPC basic, I didnt try it though.



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