Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby themightyglider » 16 Apr 2016, 19:30

I just came across this blog post : http://www.indieretronews.com/2015/10/pico-8-8-bit-fantasy-console-from.html

Somehow I really like the idea. It would be great to have something similar as FOSS.

I don't have any concrete plans to do something like the P8. I just would like to discuss the idea it self and the possibilities to realise it for now.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby mdtrooper » 17 Apr 2016, 02:31

I knew Pico-8, but I thought that it was free software, but it is close software as you point.

Well, I think the first alternative (of course it is not 100% pixel style) is:
    Löve: it is a game engine (for 2D mostly) in Lua
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby themightyglider » 17 Apr 2016, 07:24

I know LÖVE. It's a very cool project and a easy way to make games.

What is interesting about P8 is the home computer like enviorment that comes together with some kind of game maker. I think this is what could unleash peoples creativity maybe, it even could attract new people to deal with programming at all.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby mdtrooper » 18 Apr 2016, 17:38

Today I see into the blog of Hack a day, there is a open source implementation of Pico8, the name is PicoLove:

PicoLove

It is sounds good.

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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby themightyglider » 18 Apr 2016, 22:41

The uzebox is a nice project as well. http://belogic.com/uzebox/index.asp
But it is more for people with a bit more technical know how.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby themightyglider » 19 Apr 2016, 08:01

I'm wondering how hard it could be to write something like the pico-8.

The LÖVE framework could be a good base to write a 'virtual' console which offers a graphical surface, the possibility to play chiptune like sound, hadeling input, maybe even things like sprite collision and so on. The game creator would only have to code the games logic in lua which could be imported as a module by the console.
I think so far this would not be to hard so far.
In the next step it would need some development environment. A tool for pixel art, a tracker for the chiptune, maybe a easy IDE for coding and a tool to pack everything into a single file (A plain text file would be the best). This would be a lot of work but still possible.
If the result would gather a active comunity like the P8 and maybe make more (aspecially young) people aware of free software this could be a great project.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby onpon4 » 19 Apr 2016, 13:19

So, Pico-8 is a game engine which is extremely limited in what it can do, and games made for it are distributed as some sort of binary blob containing everything that has to be fed to an interpreter. What exactly is advantageous about it? If anything, a brief look at the manual and the only example code I could find suggests to me that the style of this engine promotes spaghetti code.

I guess a little toy to make basic games no one really cares about could be nice, but if that was the goal, there would be no need for programming at all (and the lack of programming would justify such limitations). I once played a Flash game that allowed people to do this; it basically worked by having a collection of standard objects that could be placed in a grid and had some properties you could tweak. That's one thing I've thought of recreating at some point. But if you're going to be doing programming in Lua, you might as well use something like Love2D.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby themightyglider » 19 Apr 2016, 15:06

@onpon4
I think if you call the pico-8 a toy you are right. But to make something similar without.the need of programming wouldn't be the same experience.

Maybe thats because the way I've made my way toward coding. At school I'd never had something worth to be called computer sciences at all. When I asked my teachers how computer programms are made they told me that people need to study informatics to be able to do this. So I thougth it must allmost be impossible to learn for a ordenary guy like me.
This just changed as I got my hands on someones old c=64 a couple of years ago. I just made the basic hello world stuff and figured out that it isn't that hard at all. After this I dared to learn a modern programming language and to make my way deeper down the rabbit hole. I think that more people could make a similar experience with something like P8. Thats why I wish to have something like this as free software.

On the other hand I think it could be a nice challenge for more experienced people to make.still something awsome with all the limitations.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby onpon4 » 19 Apr 2016, 15:31

When I asked my teachers how computer programms are made they told me that people need to study informatics to be able to do this.

That's your teacher's fault, not the fault of programming languages. You can delve into just about any language and easily put together a "hello world" program. Heck, in Python, it's just one function call. I don't see how Pico-8 is anything special in this area. I had a similar experience to yours (minus people insisting that programming is hard), but with Game Maker and GML (GML being basically like JavaScript with Pascal elements tossed in). Such an experience should also be perfectly possible with Love2D, or Godot, or some other game engine that's actually useful.

On a side note, I don't even know what informatics is.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby themightyglider » 19 Apr 2016, 17:51

Of course you are right. The same experience as mine is possible with Löve, godo, python or anything else.
Maybe I'm just kind of sentimental about the 8-bit-era and like it because of that. But I can't resist the idea of a virtual 8-Bit computer.

On a side note, I don't even know what informatics is.


'Informatik' is our german word for computer sience. For many german words it works just fine to replace the 'k' with a 'c' to get a english one. This one seems to be an exceptional case...
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby breadbeard » 09 Nov 2016, 16:21

Here is a new project called liko12. I think it is exactly what u were looking for!
https://love2d.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=82913
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby Taknamay » 18 Nov 2016, 02:00

themightyglider {l Wrote}:'Informatik' is our german word for computer sience. For many german words it works just fine to replace the 'k' with a 'c' to get a english one. This one seems to be an exceptional case...

"Informatics" is the right spelling, it's just a pretty uncommon term here.

I like the idea of this, but I think it would not be the best way to make a fairly large game. For a small game it could be fun. Technical constraints can spur creativity.
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby mdtrooper » 19 Nov 2016, 23:32

Some days ago, I wrote a entry in my blog about the "Open Source alternatives to Pico 8"...but it is only in spanish, I am sorry.

Pico-8 no es software libre, pero hay alternativas libres, the title in english is more or less "Pico-8 is not free software, but there are free software alternatives".
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby 333charles333 » 11 Dec 2016, 16:23

Liko 12

It is a FREE clone of Pico 8 THAT ALLOWS YOU TO EXCEED THE PICO 8 RESTRICTIONS and it needs everyone here's support

Having used Pico 8 on my CHIP before it broke i can confirm it is near identical

Liko 12

support it
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Re: Open Source alternative to Pico-8

Postby droppingby » 13 Jan 2017, 20:29

I was also looking for things similar to Pico-8 and google brought me to this thread, so I thought I might share what I found so far.

TIC tiny computer https://nesbox.itch.io/tic - well, it's not open source, but free
PX8 https://hallucino.itch.io/px8 - it's open source, but the binaries are not free
Pixel Vision 8 https://twitter.com/pixelvision8?lang=en - it's not exactly like Pico-8, but it's also (going to be) a fantasy console

On github there are a bunch of things in very early development (like https://github.com/HelveticaScenario/Rosebud), just browse around.

Cheers.
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