I am much confused about cstore/reload vs cartdata.
If I read correctly - you could replace cartdata with cstore/reload writing to and from the cart file, no?
Is it actually the case that this is true, or am I missing something important? I will note I am unable to currently get cstore/reload to actually work as I think they are supposed to, so I am open to "no, you misunderstand".
For the record - this is what I was trying:
Start Pico-8, do:
CSTORE(0x4300, 0x4300, 1, "TEST")
Then later, restart Pico-8, and:
RELOAD(0x4300, 0x4300, 1, "TEST")
And I expect it to return 99 - but it does not.
Is a puzzlement.
PS. Can we get a version() call, or maybe put it in the "About Pico-8" menu? Seems it would be handy.
TL;DR - consider making pico-8 free for very inexpensive hardware, as a means to spur community growth and get it into the hands of the next generation.
So - this is easy for me to suggest, it costs me nothing.
I loves me some pico-8. Part of why I am so fond of it is it puts me back in my early teens, on my Atari 400, writing random silly games for the sheer joy of it. (I was fortunate enough to have parents able, and willing, to gamble nearly a grand on what amounted to a toy computer for their kid) But it has other great features - it is small enough to be learnable, it actively encourages sharing of code, and dammit - it's fun. It would be awesome if all kids had that same opportunity. Hold that thought for a moment.
One bit that I would love to see is an actual hardware realization. Yeah, I can play my stuff on OS X, but I crave a handheld, maybe something GBA or Nintendo DS flavored in terms of size. I don't want to carry around a laptop to play pico-8 games, and kids don't really have that option, until you maybe have an iOS/Android version.
I have a half-baked idea that it would be cool to take a Pi zero and do the fiddly work to make that happen; It is not impossible that the costs for such a project might get into the $30 total range, and for a kid to be able to have a handheld game console that they can make their own games on self-hosted, and trade the results - I can't help but think that would be phenomenal.
So - mixing that all together in a bucket:
What I was going to suggest is this; to encourage this sort of thing, offer a reduced (ideally free) license for pico-8, but only for hardware costing less than $N - where N is somewhere around 20 USD, give or take. You would end up included, by default, on EVERY danged distro ever for those bits, and usage would spread like wildfire, especially to schools and to kids who have savvy parents that are simply too poor to run bigger hardware. Also, it would spur development of inexpensive low-end linux-capable hardware to host it - "open source" handhelds, with proper controls and screens pixel-for-pixel suited to run pico-8.
I am not an business guy - but I would think what you lose on direct sales would be made up for by skyrocketing use, and more direct sales from old guys like myself who see that console, and want to develop for it, but would rather do so on our actual desktops.
Just thinking out loud.
So, it's 1am and this is what is keeping me up.
Boot up pico-8. Bask in it's glory. Hit esc to jump into the editor.
Type something, mess with mouse. Text selection. Go to icon editor, and the mouse is your main tool. So - clearly the pico-8 fantasy hardware supports a mouse.
Why can't my programs read the mouse? Possible answers:
1) The editors are "special" (do not like! seems unfair somehow.)
2) You can, it's just hidden or undocumented (ooh)
3) Because the editors are not written in the language we are using and have special access (probably the real answer, but very unsatisfying. breaks the illusion/metaphor of fantasy hardware.)
Or maybe something else? I noticed that you can poke in values to monkey with screen modes; if there were peeks somewhere that read the mouse x/y and buttons that we have yet to discover, that would be just kinda awesome.
If there are not - would be super cool to see them someday. Even if they were slipped in quietly for the community to accidentally discover via experimentation. Just sayin.
-- Your Friend Biggles