Pico-8 Particle Animation With Sprite Font


Pico-8 Old school demoLast months Revision demo party inspired me to take a few evenings to write an “old skool” demo for the Pico-8. It’s a fairly simple demo that is reminiscent of the Amiga and C64 demo scene, it illustrates a randomly generated star field that is animated within the bounds of the Pico’s screen. To add that retro flare, a text marque scrolls across the footer displaying a message. The built in font set didn’t have that sizzle I was looking for, so I opted for a custom sprite based font.

You can watch the full demo over at Pico-8 BBS.

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“Ghost in the Shell” Signal Static on the Pico-8


Screen static demoThe glitch or static effect that appeared in “Ghost in the Shell” trailers, that have been circulating the last couple of months inspired me to apply a similar effect to a game project in development. What better way is there to demo the effect than in a 8bit “Ghost in the Shell” title screen?

The static effect is reasonably configurable, random and light weight, using very few available tokens. In the game version, additional parameters are available to set width, height and offset’s, to allow targeted areas with the static effect.

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Pico-8 Sprite Animation Basics


Creating sprite animation based on user input in Lua is made remarkably handy by a set of functions made available by the Pico-8 environment. I’m going to be extending these core functions with a set of reusable worker functions to establish the foundations of a game engine.


What’s covered in this article:

  1. Pico-8 programming environment structure
  2. Creating a manageable instruction set
  3. Receiving user input and manipulating game assets

This tutorial’s goal is help those of us who are new to Lua/Pico-8 to get a working prototype up and running. I’m basing this modal on my experiences developing a simple adventure game.

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8-Bit Night Sprawl


city01-ani
The endless sprawl of a future city, 8-bit pixel art style. Shown at 300%.

This test piece had two goals:

  1. To work with a limited palette while adding depth to a clustered, dense scene.
  2. And to create a visual representation, in pixels, of a story/game world that has been bouncing around in my head for a long time.

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