Sunday, 7 July 2019

FooBilliard Plus and Neverball using Warp3D Nova on AmigaOne X5000

This weekend I decided to take a look at the recently released upgraded games called FooBilliard Plus and Neverball for AmigaOS 4.1 Final Edition with the Enhancer Software 1.5 update. These games were ported to AmigaOS 4.1 by Kas1e and are both free to download from os4depot.net

These games uses the latest enhancements to the OpenGL ES2 functionality and Warp3D Nova in the Enhancer Software 1.5 package for AmigaOS 4.1 Final Edition, released by A-Eon Technology recently and available for purchase on Amistore or the AmigaKit website.



As mentioned these games require Enhancer Software v1.5 installed, released by A-Eon Technology. I have previously looked at version 1.4 and many earlier versions of Enhancer previously on this blog. (if you want to see more of what is included with it).

I updated Enhancer via the Updater application, which is included as part of Enhancer 1.5 (and previous versions).


The latest version has a few changes but the main area to focus on is the Warp3D Nova and OpenGL ES2 library enhancements in this release, in which the OpenGL ES2 support is improved!


With these ongoing improvements, it means we are starting to see new games using these new developments for AmigaOS 4.1 Final Edition that really push the AmigaOne platform forward, which is great for us all in 2019!

I quickly worked through the installation of Enhancer Software 1.5. As mentioned I have covered this process extensively in previous blog posts and the installation process is identical in this release.


With that installed, I downloaded the games from os4depot.net.

Here is the Foo Billiard Plus drawer after extracting the archive:


Definitely read the AmigaOS4 readme included as it explains how to customise the screen modes, level of detail, etc:


On launch the game runs in a 1024x768 window on the AmigaOS 4.1 Final Edition Workbench screen:


As the game name suggests, this is a 3D Billiards game, which is a lot of fun actually!

As the game starts you can rotate around the table to position yourself for the shot, and adjust the percentage power of the shot at the bottom of the screen:



If you click on the the rounded rectangles on the left and right side of the screen, you can access the Function key menus and also the zoom in/out functions.


Right off the bat I have to say it looks sensational, running smoothly in 1080p full screen (which you can set in the options in the game).

It is amazing to see AmigaOS 4.1 Final Edition able to run games that look as great as this in 2019:



As I get into the game proper I quickly find out the computer is rather good at the game, and I really suck at it:


After you play your shot you see the computer plays it's turn too:


I kept making the mistake of hitting the ball too hard:


There is some nice background music to the game which suits the mood well.


But after a while you get the hang of it:


Sometimes the computer gets it wrong too and I won my first game:


I quickly settled into a number of games as this game is a lot of fun to play and easy to learn:


Time to break:


The computer is whipping me this time, with me rarely getting a shot in:



Important not to set the shot up too easy for the computer on their turn:


If you make it too easy for the computer, it takes full advantage and wipes the floor with you!


I have to say I really enjoyed playing Foo Billiard Plus on my X5000.

After playing the game a number of times, I also took the opportunity to take a quick breather and play with the latest MickJT-Mplayer (non altivec version) on my X5000, which works well - here is a video playing through the X5000 very nicely:


I then moved on to trying out the latest version of Neverball, v1.6 which uses the OpenGL ES2 functionality in the latest Warp3D Nova release in Enhancer Software v1.5.




Initially on launch it runs in 1024x768 windowed, but we can fix that in the Graphics settings in the Options menu to run 1920x1080 full screen on the AmigaOne X5000:



An option inside the game explains the rules too - you control the tilt of the floor which causes the ball to move around the game area. You need to collect the minimum required coins on the level and reach the goal in the time limit:


The controls are outlined but really there is not much to it - just tilt the floor with the keyboard arrow keys or mouse:


 There is a normal mode and challenge mode. The challenge mode gives you only three balls to start with to complete the game!


There are a lot of levels in this game - I decided to try the Easy level set first:


But you can of course go for the hardest Nevermania level set too:


Level 1 - let's get into it:



It look impressive to say I got a new record, but really - I just finished the level!


Here is level 2:


The music is nice too and works well with the game.


As you go through the levels it gets harder and trickier, with all manner of obstacles to make it harder. The level preview helps, and also explains the minimum coins to be collected, with some bonus coins worth more too:



Sometimes you need to tilt on a consistent angle to get through the level, like in Level 4:



Other times you need to avoid going too fast and flying off the level itself! Trust me, it is easier to do than you think!


The hill slope levels are interesting too:




There are levels with moving floors to make it even harder, and even moving pinball machine components to bounce off:




The game is a lot of fun, but can be disorienting if you roll too fast. The trick of course is the manage the tilt to avoid this and get through the level as fast as possible, while collecting all the coins!


I think Neverball is a lot of fun and little bit reminds me of playing balance board exercise games on the Nintendo Wii Fit balance board, which worked in a similar way!


 Also classic Amiga games like Marble Madness and Rock N Roll are also inspirations to this game I think.

It is great to see OpenGL ES2 being used in AmigaOS 4.1 Final Edition games and I look forward to seeing even more in the future!

It is well worth giving these games a go!

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