During development of a graphics card for the Apple-1 I ran into the problem to procure some nice looking on-screen figures found in Apple II games for demo purposes. Alas, the process using a real Apple II (clone) is too tedious, it takes me about 15 minutes until have a a captured screen image on my Linux machine to work on it, only to find out it was taken while the screen buffer was incomplete (software still drawing the 'sprites' or the fixed objects). So I moved to AppleWin-22.214.171.124 emulation where I have the debugging console. This solves the problem with incompletely drawn screens, but I need to work in a Windows ennvironment, and then move all the data to Linux, and since my development computers all are air-gapped and USB sticks are prohibited on them, it's another tedious data transfer process (the problem with any USB device is that it can hijack the computer, so I don't use them with the machines where my own work is stored).
So, do you know of any efficient, time-saving way to 'borrow' / 'steal' / 'hijack' sprites or other screen art from Apple II games, please tell me. I'm also looking for an efficient Apple II sprite editor which knows the artifact color tricks.
The best solution I could think of would be an Apple II emulator which has a mode to produce a 'video stream file' from a game being played in the emulator. One mode could use page soft switch flips to trigger the streaming of the 2 x 8k screen buffer contents to hard disk. These then could be examined frame by frame and edited / copied as needed. Not all games use page flips, though, but those with good animation do.
Any thoughts / hints / tips ?
- Uncle Bernie