|First of all, I have tested Hollywood at my TV-station (RTV JedinsTVo, Novi Pazar, Serbia) and I currently use it for creating a little quiz-game (see the pictures at the end of a review - just click any picture to enlarge it). But now let`s move on to the review:
Hollywood comes on one CD and takes up ca. 30 MB including the installation. There are also short instructions included, explaining the installation of the program.
Minimal requirement for using Hollywood are:
Kickstart 3.0 (v39)
Amiga OS v3.0
but it is really(!) recommended to have the following equipment:
Kickstart 3.1 (v40)
Amiga OS v3.9
Graphic card with CyberGraphX or Picasso96
Memory 32mb (or more)
Hollywood has been tested under Winuae 0.8.22 R8, Amiga OS 3.9+BB 128mb RAM, Pentium 4(intel) 2,4Ghz, 512MB memory, GForce 4 Ti4200 graphic card with 64mb memory.
Hollywood is available for both AmigaOS and MorphOS. The installation is very simple and only takes a few moments. You can also choose between German or English language.
What is Hollywood and what does it do?
Hollywood is intended for creating your own applications, demos, slideshows, as well as games. It should be mentioned, that it does not have any GUI. Instead you will have to create and edit scripts. Hollywood scripts are ASCII files - so editing can be done by any text editor like CygnusED, GoldEd, EditPad, etc. You may think that editing is a bit old-fashioned these days when compared to similar applications available on Windows or the Mac. Anyway, once you get used to it, everything gets more easy - but more on that later.
On the CD-ROM there is a very good documentation Amiga Guide format describing how to use all available resources of the program.
First of all, Hollywood allows starting your applications on ECS, OCS, AGA or RTG systems, on WB or individual screens. There is a whole palette of options for viewing pictures, text or animations aswell as playing sounds and music-modules. It also features over 100 transition effects for displaying your content. There are also options for scaling, rotating, moving brushes/pictures or animations and even text.
Transition effects are similar to the ones you may already know from Scala. That mostly means 2D-effects, but in comparism to Scala, Hollywood works in full 24bit mode and because of that, transitions effects are looking excellent. Not to forget about support for transparent graphics as well as animation!
There is also support for lots of picture-formats like TIFF or Bitmap. Even Amiga color fonts can be used. Of course, you can also playback MODs and samples whereas the size of a sample is not limited at all! Last but not least there is also support for dataypes, which means that you can virtually display all kind of formats you have a datatype for.
Here is a short overview on the script-functionality:
Starting Hollywood-scripts is possible from both CLI or via GUI which allows viewing your script which is already done.
Compiling of new script, that is giving some basical parameters for a new script.
View informations of all installed Plugins.
Way of the presentation of a script which has already been done on a WB screen.
Options for viewing some basic informations about program (about) and exiting the program.
With the distribution of Hollywood you also get some already-done scripts. Should set aside some applications which have written in Hollywood. Here are some of the included applications which have been generated in Hollywood:
First of all, there is a program for viewing pictures called AmigaSeeDC which worked very good on this machine. IFF pictures in resolutions like 1024 x 768, and 2,4 MB size, have been displayed in less then one second. The application also features some additional options like zooming a picture, which is very useful.
Hollywoods author also added some other nice tools like a little modul player called amiJukeBox.
Then there is the nice-looking EuroCalc, a very usable utilitiy for europe currency conversion and WB swatch - one very interesting swatch which is the ideal WB-clock replacement. But the list in not ending here. There is also a great screensaver included called Amiquarium - a simulation of an aquarium.
The Hollywood pack also gives you a classical puzzle-game.
All scripts which are included in the CD-ROM have worked properly except "Text zoom" which has notified error "out of memory". Mostly, I was very impressed with Hollywoods transparency option for animation-brushes (3d text script).
To sum it up, I can say, that I think that Hollywood is a very flexible presentation-software but it is clearly missing a GUI for competing with other applications that can be found on other Operating Systems. Maybe than Amiga is soon back in the world of multimedia? But on the other hand Hollywood is already offering so much possibilities. The wise author's move also is the "Malibu" plugin, some kind of Scala-emulation on 24bit systems. All old Scala's scripts will see the light of day through Hollywood again.
n this way I would thank to author of program for sending me a Hollywood Test-CD-ROM for the review as well as Richard Kapp (GFX-BASE editor) for placing trust in me.
Thanks to Andreas Falkenhahn for sending us a test version.
Author: Bojan Milovic