Posted 30 March 2017 - 03:10 AM
That's a very interesting quote and it can be taken on a number of levels...
1st is viewpoint Rob puts out that implies a total lack of quality control, authenticity never even on the minds of the higher ups at Atari at the time etc and reading it, I had a mental image of Dick Jones from Robocop sneering, who cares if it worked or not? About ED-209 in Robocop..
But an alternative viewpoint is hang on, you were employed to do a job here, basically convert this coin op to this platform...
That's it. No one was asking for exclusive bonus stages, redesign of gameplay etc, so Rob was basically given a set of instructions and that was it.
As a coder, shown what needed to be replicated, is he now saying he needed his hand held during games development? Without a guiding hand he would of lacked the ability to copy what arcade version was doing as best as the hardware could do?.
Which way to coders want things? Project managers on board and then you get the wahhhhh it was so restrictive a working environment, they wouldn't let me do...or said I had to put in things hardware wasn't capable of..
Or..here's what we need and it needs to be done by..type approach?
Producing an original game from scratch is 1 thing, but copying an arcade game is a lot more straightforward.
Hell number of UK coding teams who did coin op conversions without being given source code, at best video footage of coin op, then had to work out how bonus rooms etc worked or in case of Amiga/ST Star Wars were coded from memory...
Not sure what Rob is trying to say here..marketing wouldn't of cared, but then was Rob himself asking them how they planned to market the game or did he not care?
His contract was as simple as once you deliver code in full your paid in full or was it based on units paid for 1st X months and reduced to something else for sales after?
It's never made clear.
Maybe it's a personal thing, but if your good at your job, you take effort to ensure you do a good a job as possible as your taking money for it and when looking for new work, your judged on efforts of past work and when you have complete freedom to work way you want to, as Rob implies here, you yourself are responsible for deciding how accurate you try and make it.
No offence to Rob and Atari so so often never gave a toss about quality control on software and we the consumer paid the price, but there it was clear case of Atari interfering, reducing budgets, coding time, Memory etc.
I didn't get the impression this was the case with 2600 Space Invaders..from Robs comment.