Jump to content
LaunchBox Community Forums

Leaderboard


Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 01/11/2020 in all areas

  1. 9 points
    10.10-beta-1 is out now with the following: New Feature: Background blurring can now be fine tuned to any amount (or easily turned off) under Tools > Options > Visuals > Backgrounds. Background blurring options are also now available for all themes, including the old default theme. Improvement: Performance for the new default theme is now on par with the old default theme. We're using a completely new method to blur the backgrounds, since the old method was causing performance degradation. Improvement: Box shadows for the new default theme can be disabled under Tools > Options > Visuals > Boxes in order to improve performance on lowend systems Improvement: Numbers sections of titles will now be sorted numerically by default, instead of alphabetically. For example, the new logic will sort 1, 2, and 11 as 1, 2, 11 instead of the 1, 11, 2 order that was used previously. Fixed: In Big Box, the retro achievements game details web view can now be zoomed in and out with the proper bindings We've also added the manifest to supposedly support long path names, but we haven't been able to test and confirm that it's working. If anyone can confirm either way on this, please let us know.
  2. 5 points
    !! UPDATE !! +3 new category video. Who finish the category set. šŸ˜— Already available through the usual channels. Category Favorite (heavy one, sorry. Based on photo) Category Pinball (full CGI be me) Category(?) Playlists (heavy one, sorry. Based on photo) @Jason Carr For the next step, can you give me the Arcade default playlists (full list) ? Like a simple a txt file. I can't find them on the forum! Thank you šŸ˜ƒ
  3. 5 points

    Version 1.0.0

    11 downloads

  4. 5 points
  5. 4 points
  6. 4 points
  7. 3 points

    Version 1.0.0

    15 downloads

    Another one done enjoy
  8. 3 points
  9. 2 points
    Everything is ready for 10.10 Language ru-Ru (10.10-beta-3).zip
  10. 2 points
  11. 2 points

    Version 1.0.0

    131 downloads

    Happy New Year 2020 to all NOTE THIS THEME IS BUILT FOR STEAM STYLE BANNERS FOR THE FAVOURITES & RECENTLY PLAYED BOX IMAGES. This is Play Box 3, A continuation of Play Box 2. I have redesigned this theme for a more modern look of Steam Big Picture Mode or TV Media Center Graphical User Interfaces. All games & apps that have been added as your favourite & recently played now have a Steam Banner style shortcut on the Home Screen for quick access. Platform & Games views now have faded backgrounds for artwork. Included in my theme is alternative control layouts for Microsoft XBOX One & Sony Playstation 4 & a collection of steam Banners for games of various platforms. There are 2x Platform views & 6x Game views to choose from all with menu controls, All the videoborder views from my previous Play Box Themes are there. Important note**If the artwork & videoborder views do not display properly for a platform on your system, there will most likely be naming conflicts between your platforms & files in my theme. To fix this issue, you must locate these files in the background & videoborder folders of my Play Box theme then change the names to your actual platforms name. Installation Unzip the Play Box 3 folder to your Launchbox /Themes directory. Setting up Steam Banners Make sure you set Platform & Game images as Steam Banners within the game options in Launchbox. Then for them to be used in the theme correctly set the priority of the boxes view to prioritise Steam Banners first - if you ever want to revert this it is then simply a case of lowering the priority of the steam banners in the boxes list rather than having to remove or reorganise images. To do this open Launchbox and go to Tools --> Options and in the window that appear select Box Front Properties in the Images section and use the Up button to move the Steam Banners to the top of the list. Big thanks to Jason Carr, CriticalCid & RetroHumanoid for there Unified themes which has inspired me to create my videoborder views. And a big thanks to BlazingRyuu for his Device Icons which i have slightly edited to scale to my theme. Demo.mp4
  12. 2 points

    Version 1.0.0

    29 downloads

    This is an almost complete collection Of Microsoft XBox 360 - XBox Live Arcade 2D Boxes. There are 694 2D Boxes in the collection with the choice of either an orange case or green case. These are made from the official Microsoft covers and as a result the quality will vary. A Big thank you goes out to @mccorkled who supplied the original artwork files. LIST OF GAMES COVERED: ORANGE SKIN OPTION: GREEN SKIN OPTION:
  13. 1 point
    I just uploaded version 0.33 to the Play Store with the following: Added support for over 50 new emulators! Custom emulators are now supported, if you have the correct metadata for them (package name, activity name, and ROM path key) Fixed issues with imports on a few platforms with incorrect platform names that don't exist on the LaunchBox Games Database Added the Sammy Atomiswave platform Some of these were already in the 0.32 release, but 0.32 was only released to beta. Thanks to the community we've found and fixed some bugs in the 0.32 release, so 0.33 is going out to everyone with the fixes in place, as well as a new Sammy Atomiswave platform. As always, it's not available quite yet because Google takes a few hours to make the update live. I'll update this thread when it goes live in a few hours.
  14. 1 point
    That solved things. Many thanks Jason.
  15. 1 point
  16. 1 point
  17. 1 point
    Indeed: Beauty .... The C64 port of Gyruss.... Crap: The C64 port of Hard Drivin' LMAO
  18. 1 point
    Thank you @alexposad; I have these updates in for 10.10-beta-2.
  19. 1 point
    When will the next poll be? And I assume it will have a live chat to join as in the past? It will be interesting to see what might be added in 2020!
  20. 1 point
    Hello. I'm a huge fan of this program. I think it's awesome that people are developing new DOS apps in 2020! Recently, I was inspired to try and get the program running on a PlayStation Portable after seeing this video of Android-based emulation device using the program as a launcher for DOS games: https://youtu.be/ErBAszD3NBo?t=432. I'm able to get the program to run with PSP DosBox. However, every time I try and add a game, I get an error message: "File access error in module MAIN at address 01DO:15F1." If I enter the game path directly into launchbx.txt, then launch the game from the app, I get the same error message, but for address 01D8:4874. Does anyone know what might be causing this? I wonder if perhaps it's because the latest version of DosBox available on PSP is 0.71? Hoping this new version under development will work on PSP! Or that I simply need to adjust some setting in dosbox.conf...
  21. 1 point
    Sorry, I meant VGA 50 line mode which some apps use natively - Xtree gold for example.
  22. 1 point
    version 2 wasn't really happy with the first let me know what you think.
  23. 1 point
    the numerical stuff is a nice addition.
  24. 1 point
    Thanks for the feedback, Iā€™m very grateful as Iā€™m trying to create a theme as modern as possible. My only limitations is the CoverFlow wheel in the platform & games views as I would like to be able to navigate vertically & horizontally like you can in the favourites & recently played boxes/banners. I will add a cover art & video for you in the games text view & look at the wheel in the games wheel view also as soon as I get time as Iā€™m working on another similar theme. Stay tuned for updates.
  25. 1 point
    Some quick work done. Theme will show a game's specific controls if they exist. If not, it will default to a platform level control image. All images must be placed in a specific folder path. Not sure how quickly I will finish, but at least started on it. This is just a quick mock-up so it may change looks. The Xbox 1 controller images are not mine I just grabbed from from our forum to test with. The structure will be something like: For platform level controls \Images\Game Controls\[Platform Name.jpg] For game level controls \Images\Game Controls\[Platform Name]\[Game Name.jpg]
  26. 1 point
  27. 1 point
    Looks good! In your text you say: This is an almost complete collection Of Microsoft XBox 360 - XBox Live Arcade 2D Boxes. There are 694 3D Boxes in the collection with the choice of either an orange case or green case. These are made from the official Microsoft covers and as a result the quality will vary. But it looks like the boxes are 2D rather than 3D.
  28. 1 point
    Here is a realistic Arcade overlay for the game, Battle Garegga for use on Retroarch. The original bezel was made by: ArsInvictus This overlay is coming soon on my Arcade Retroarch Pack #2.
  29. 1 point
    This can easily be done. You really do not need a custom folder. Just use the Arcade - Controls Information folder for this (slight downside is that Mame images will override any custom you make, I just do not download those). Would be nice to have its own folder though. It can also also be done by platform as well. That way in the case of like NES no need to make an image for each game. I have a theme that does this on my daughter's cabinet. Never released it since many of the added layer images are custom for her. I could probably clean it of all that and release it.
  30. 1 point
    Eye candy is nice, but not at the expense of functionality (with more memory consumed, slower scrolling, e.t.c). That's just my personal opinion of course, others may prefer more eye candy over functionality. The old default is much more practical and responsive for my configuration - i don't care for blurred backgrounds or smooth corners on images for example, i want to be able to find and launch a game quickly...
  31. 1 point
    Very nice job! Are you going to do 2D ones as well?
  32. 1 point
    I might be totally off on this, but I thought that only chd would work as the software list is looking for a file. For example, for "Hotel Mario" to work (per the below from the cdi.xml), you need a hotmario.zip dummy file and the file name hotel mario (1994)(philips)(eu)[!] with the sha1 checksum below. You could could use chdman to convert one of your bin/cue to chd (rename if required) and see if it works? <software name="hotmario"> <!-- Origin: TOSEC <rom name="Hotel Mario (1994)(Philips)(EU)[!].iso" size="366794400" crc="8305fbca" md5="eaba42fc6572a66cb91ceeb976595485"/> <rom name="Hotel Mario (1994)(Philips)(EU)[!].cue" size="123" crc="0a437951" md5="df72c8ced1f5d36a38c5ca2e9330062b"/> --> <description>Hotel Mario (Euro)</description> <year>1994</year> <publisher>Philips</publisher> <part name="cdrom" interface="cdi_cdrom"> <diskarea name="cdrom"> <disk name="hotel mario (1994)(philips)(eu)[!]" sha1="f24e118b807bc2479794eaa6cc35526e70be5bf0"/> </diskarea> </part> </software> Cheers.
  33. 1 point
    Found a small work around, when you delete a game as soon as you press on the last "yes" button to delete it, if you quickly press straight onto the game next to it or another game before the screen dims. When it stops dimming it won't go back to the top of the list. Sometimes doesn't work if the timing isn't right but a temp solution that helps a bit at least.
  34. 1 point

    Version 1.0

    15 downloads

    These are Mega Drive bezels I made for Tanglewood mirroring The Bezel Project theme @ 1920x1080 for both 8 bit & 24 bit formats. Also included in the zip is the .cfg file for Tanglewood (World) (Unl) which your rom name must mirror.
  35. 1 point
    Well most people don't add 1000s of games only to delete them.
  36. 1 point
    Here's an example of how it happened to me once. For the Sega Saturn i was trying to import the game Mystaria: Realms of Lore and it refused. If "force duplicates" is unchecked it will say "0 games successfully imported", if its checked it will import it and all the media on it will be for the game Blazing Heroes (which was already in my collection). If you do a search for "Mystaria" on the metadata search, its simply not there, but it will recommend Blazing Heroes as the only recommendation. I'm not an expert on the game, but from what i've found online, it says Mystaria was released in '95 in North America, and then re-released in late '96 in North America with the title Blazing Heroes. Not sure if there's any difference between the two releases, but this is a good example of how missing metadata can cause nothing to be imported. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mystaria:_The_Realms_of_Lore
  37. 1 point
    Jason, on the note of the GBA games not working, if i remember correctly the emulator handled gba differently than gbc/gb, Vgbanext used to be 2 separate emulators one for gbc/gb (which i beleive was named vgb), and the other was for GBA(called vgba), so the only thing i can think of is maybe in the code you are not referring to the right location/activity?
  38. 1 point

    Version 1.0.0

    2,663 downloads

    Here's a quick little intro I made for my own system and thought I'd share here for others.
  39. 1 point

    Version 1.0.3

    161 downloads

    Hello All, Here is the PopCap media pack I have been working on for a while. There are 46 games in total. I could not find any existing art or packs to make this look good in Launchbox so I created this one. I hope you like it. My photoshop skills are amateur at best but for me, this is better than nothing. Enjoy! Included: 46 3d-boxes 46 box fronts 46 box backs 46 clear logos 46 videosnaps 46 Disc Images I only made the box artwork. I did not make the logos or the videosnaps. I would give credit to who did but I have no idea who it was and can not remember where I found them. Not: The video snaps are in .flv format. Launchbox has no issues with them on my system. I hope they work for all! Examples:
  40. 1 point

    Version (20 games)

    582 downloads

    Some video themes and video snaps I made for this system. I might add more as soon as I make them. How to add to your LaunchBox and BigBox: Download the zip files. Extract to LaunchBox's root folder. Content will be extracted to its proper folders. Done! Video snaps will show up in the game details panels. Video themes will appear on BigBox themes' views that use them. List of Video Themes: Catherine Demon's Souls Diablo III Reaper of Souls - Ultimate Evil Edition Earthworm Jim HD Final Fantasy XIII NEW Final Fantasy XIII-2 NEW God of War HD God of War II HD God of War III Lollipop Chainsaw Lightning Returns - Final Fantasy XIII Mirror's Edge NEW Ni no Kuni - Wrath of the White Witch NieR Replicant Persona 5 Red Dead Redemption Red Dead Redemption: Game of the Year Edition NEW Resident Evil Code - Veronica X HD Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix The Last of Us Details for Nerds: Video themes are mostly 1080p60, some are 4K, all encoded with HEVC for optimal file size. Videosnaps are usually 540p, some lower resolution, some higher up to 720p60. Encoded using x264 for compatibility. Video themes' audio is 160 kbps aac, video snaps 96-160 kbps aac.
  41. 1 point
    @Dwayne Hurst if I am not mistaken.
  42. 1 point
    This certainly could be possible, but the original creator would have to do it, or if he allowed someone else to do it.
  43. 1 point
    Luigi Mansion Gonna do some more now I wanna get these finished
  44. 1 point

    Version 1.0.0

    119 downloads

    This is a complete Hyperlist collection of 2D Boxes for the Sony PlayStation 2. The collection has been made from the 3D Boxes and myself and @dejarik made and I have converted them to 2D Boxes. There is a few low resolution covers in the collection but this is because that was all that was available for those few games. Europe covers are especially difficult to find. There is a Blue case option for Europe games. EUROPE BLACK CASE: EUROPE BLUE CASE OPTION:
  45. 1 point
    Thx!! there's a way to download directly all of them ?
  46. 1 point

    Version 1.0.0

    81 downloads

    For some reason media for this platfom is pretty thin on the ground so I went on a Google image mission and filled in the gaps. Full.... game box, logo, gameplay, title screen and disc (if available) for 492 titles. Share n enjoy
  47. 1 point

    Version 1.0.0

    33 downloads

    Virtua Fighter 5 Video theme or you guys enjoy
  48. 1 point

    Version 1.0.0

    75 downloads

    50 Game and Watch Logo set based on "SuperSprayer40" logo sets. Just my version of Logos as I had none that matched my other consoles ext logo sets. Still looking for more of these tiles as seem to still be missing a few like Octopus.
  49. 1 point
    I believe for the future integrity of the database and continued success of Launchbox these basic database features are necessary and should be considered. Please add a "heavy DB revamp" option in the next poll, and link to this post so the community can decide on it. Thanks. #1 Dedicated help. Jason has talked before about having another developer in the future. This new dev position should be someone working full-time on the database. At the very least, have someone part-time or a volunteer who is fully knowledged in the database working on features/fixes. The database is crucial to the Launchbox experience, but goes pretty much goes to the wayside when Jason goes back to working on features. It's a constant balance for Jason between Launchbox features, and database features. Jason seems to enjoy developing the app more, so the next paid position should be someone working on the database. If you can't pay someone, or can't justify paying someone, get a dedicated volunteer, vet them, and put them to work. Requests like this list could be directed to this person and implemented, instead of competing against more flashy features for the program. Launchbox has been in development for years now, yet the very service that makes it all work is still in "Alpha". That's just crazy. We absolutely need an official (ACTIVE) person overseeing it. #2 Protect correct Database data. Existing data values could be given a "this is correct" option that could be voted on by moderators. Once data hits a certain threshold of "correct" votes, it would become protected so that future changes could not be requested for this data. Data that hasn't been changed in years should also be marked as "correct". Moderators would have the option to flag "correct" data as invalid. Records should be kept on which games are constantly being changed so that it can be fixed 1 time with the correct values, and stop the users that keep modifying it. We should narrow the focus on completing a correct database, rather than moderators seeing absurd junk requests for popular games. #3 Protect "complete" Platforms from duplicate/invalid games. New games for "complete" platforms, for example NES, should require a lot more votes than normal to add since by this point it's probably a user error in not finding that the game already exists. This would lead to less junk for moderators to sort through and fewer duplicates. Currently a request can made about any game or value. No one wants to moderate when the next 50 changes are someone adding Mario, Zelda, ect to the NES. #4 Tiered levels of database moderators. Tiered moderator ranks could be a continuing incentive to moderate, and serve different functions. The lowest tier would just be the same as the current "moderator". Medium tier moderator would be unlocked at x10 the current DB moderator requirement. This would give double the voting power on any changes, and requested changes would say "Submitted by a veteran moderator". Finally, Top tier moderators would have all previously mentioned perks, but would only be selected by Launchbox staff. They would be able to flag "correct" values (as mentioned above), as invalid with only 3 votes required from top tier moderators before it is accepted as invalid. They could also see which user submitted the changes, and have the option to submit a request to ban the user from suggesting changes. Finally, both medium tier and top tier moderators would have access to an exclusive forum section to congregate and also to suggest database changes/features to Launchbox Staff. #5 FIX NAMES Platform names should be consistent. Either make all Platforms have its company as a prefix, or none of them. For example, all other consoles made by NEC have "NEC" in front, so "PC Engine SuperGrafx" should be changed to "NEC PC Engine SuperGrafx". #6 Community Events. I think everyone can agree that at the very least, fan-art submitted should be relevant to the game or sequels to the game on the same console. However this is currently a moderation nightmare, and is heavily influenced by personal bias since no fan-art is "correct". The real question we should ask ourselves is what benefits does fan-art add, and is it worth it compared to an optional fan-art internet scrape upon import? Some fanart from the entire series can be fine, but this could potentially spoil later sequels or even events in the current game (dead characters, betrayals, ect). I don't know how this slipped through the cracks, but personally on my setup any game that has "taz" in it displays fan-art of the Tasmanian devil character for me. Basically, either require fan-art to be specific to the game/sequence of games, or remove it. My solution is that I think we could do without fan-art. *EDIT: I don't mean reconstructions, those should definitely stay* It has no real quality standards so it leaves many high-quality fan-art submissions next to DeviantArt MS-paint fanart. It has no real moderation standards so it bogs down moderation. Seeing as there is no real limit on how much fan-art is "enough", it will constantly take up an ever-increasing amount of database space, increasing import times, but adding little to the experience or even degrading it at times (Tasmanian devil / spoilers). I'm sure many would be mad at the "loss of a feature" but an alternative could be that fan-art would optionally be scraped from the web as an import option. @Jason Carr @Lordmonkus @neil9000 @Zombeaver @DOS76
  50. 1 point
    This guide is aimed at people that are just getting started out with emulation but hopefully there are some tips in here to help some of the more advanced users as well. I won't be going into any super advanced subjects or emulator specific details at all. This is also just a guide to the basics, you should always refer to the emulators website and documentation on how to use them. I will however try and provide my opinion on what I feel is the best overall emulator in terms of both quality and ease of use. This means that while in some cases there may very well be better emulators in terms of emulation quality but their "new user friendliness" really isn't there. This means there are some great high quality emulators I won't be talking about but I may mention them by name but nothing beyond that. Section 1: What emulators to use ? This really is a tough one because there are a ton of different emulators and different people will have different requirements. For the purposes of this guide though I will stick with the basic and popular consoles. Also I will only talk about stand alone emulators and not Retroarch but I will take a moment right now to talk about it. Retroarch really is amazing and I really suggest using it once you get your feet wet with the basics and want more from your emulation experience but it really is not for the total beginners. I did write up a startup guide though for anyone wanting to get started using and can be found here: Now that Retroarch is out of the way lets talk about some of the popular and common systems that people want to emulate: Nintendo Entertainment System If you start out Googling NES Emulator you will most likely find Nestopia or Fceux as the more popular and older options and while they are good emulators and not bad choices I feel there is one much better choice and is very easy to get up and running, Mesen. This emulator is quite simply the best stand alone NES emulator out there today, it is very easy to use and is extremely accurate. Two other very good options are puNES and Bizhawk. Links: Mesen: https://www.mesen.ca/ Bizhawk: http://tasvideos.org/BizHawk.html puNES: http://forums.nesdev.com/viewtopic.php?t=6928 Super Nintendo Probably the next most common system to emulate and there really is only one option here for the beginner and that is Snes9x. No other emulator has the simplicity and quality packaged together in one. Zsnes is the old school emulator that many people still use but is horribly outdated and buggy with many games, it really is only worth using if your computer is ancient and you only want to play the top 50 games. Higan and BSnes are both extremely high quality emulators but they require the use of special chip dumps to make certain games work, games such as the MegaMan X series and Mario Kart. Those special chip dumps can be a bit tricky to find but with a little Googling you can find them, it is because of this extra step though I am not recommending these emulators to beginners. Links: Snes9x: http://www.snes9x.com/ Snes9x Download (get the 1.55 or latest version at the time of reading): http://www.s9x-w32.de/dl/ Higan (If you want to look at it): https://byuu.org/ Nintendo 64 There are two stand alone choices for this system but I can only recommend one and that is M64p otherwise known as Mupen64plus+GLideN64+GUI. This emulator is simple to setup and works extremely well. While the second choice, Project64 is a decent enough emulator (probably just as good as M64p) I cannot in good conscience ever suggest or recommend it to anyone, especially those that are new to emulation. The PJ64 team have engaged in shady malware / adware practices in the past and while the latest version does not have this issue it still has a nag screen when you use it so many times. Though this nag screen can be disabled by editing a file with notepad all these issues are enough to make it not recommended to use at all. Link: Mupen64plus: https://m64p.github.io/ Nintendo Gamecube and Wii There is only one option here, Dolphin. This emulator is fairly simple to setup though the controller setup may be a bit confusing for new users it isn't too bad. The emulator overall though is very user friendly, does not require any bios files and its emulation quality is quite high given how relatively new the hardware is. Links: Dolphin: http://www.dolphin-emulator.com/ Sega Master System, Game Gear, Genesis, CD, 32X This is going to cover Segas 8 and 16 bit consoles, the Master System, Game Gear, Genesis, Sega CD and 32X. The Kega Fusion emulator is probably the best choice here though Gens is not a bad choice at all. Both are very simple to set up and get working. Both will require bios files for the CD functionality to work though, more on bios later on in the guide. Both Fusion and Gens are old and outdated now but they are pretty much the only choices when it comes to 32X. For the other Sega consoles mentioned here Retroarchs GenesisGX Plus core is the superior emulator but because of reasons mentioned above I am recommending Fusion or Gens. Honorable mention however go to Blastem which is an up and coming high quality Genesis emulator but its UI and setup is not very user friendly at the time of writing this. Links: Fusion: http://www.emulator-zone.com/doc.php/genesis/fusion.html Unfortunately no homepage for the emulator. Gens: http://gens.me/ Blastem: https://www.retrodev.com/blastem/ Sega Saturn As much as I would like to recommend something I cannot recommend anything to people totally new to emulation. All of the choices for it have issues in one form or another but I will say that if you are seriously interested in emulating the Saturn take the time to learn how to use Mednafen or Retroarchs Beetle Saturn core which is built off of Mednafens code. Both of these do require a fairly good CPU to drive it and are very picky about the quality of the disk image dumps, there are a lot of bad Saturn dumps out there and you are required to have proper bios files. Two other options for Saturn emulation are SSF and Yabause but both have their own issues. SSF requires you to either mount disk images using a virtual CD program such as Virtual CloneDrive or DaemonTools. Yabause is more user friendly but is a very buggy emulator. Sega Dreamcast Redream is the easiest to use Dreamcast emulator but does have major issues with all of the Windows CE games right now but overall this is a fantastic emulator. It is free but does have a premium option for 5$ you can unlock the resolution scaling. Demul is the better emulator in terms of compatibility and accuracy but does have higher system requirements and is a bit of a pain to setup. Sony Playstation This one is pretty simple, much like the SNES there is only one emulator that packages both quality and ease of use into a single emulator and that is ePSXe, just make sure to use version 2.0.0 or newer. It has a fairly simple to use UI and gives you the option to use it's own built in high level emulated bios so you don't have to go looking for a bios file, though having the bios could make a difference in certain games. Like in the previous sections there are other options that technically offer better accuracy but their UI is not friendly and they are a pain to use. Mednafen and Xebra are both high quality but suck to use. Links: ePSXe: http://www.epsxe.com/ Xebra: http://www.emutopia.com/index.php/emulators/item/299-sony-playstation/1221-zebra Sony Playstation Portable Much like the Dolphin emulator for Gamecube / Wii this system only has one emulator, is super simple to setup and is very high quality, also no bios requirements. Links: PPSSPP: http://ppsspp.org/ Sony Playstation 2 At first I wasn't even going to talk about this system but I figured I may as well because it is a well known and popular system. I was hesitant to talk about this emulator because while it plays a giant percentage of the games it is fairly glitchy and when using a hardware renderer it essentially requires settings on a per game basis to get as much out of the emulator as possible. I really don't consider this a new user friendly emulator but it's not exactly awful either, it certainly lacks the polish that Dolphin or PPSSPP has. Get the latest nightly builds if you intend on using this, the stable builds are quite old in comparison and there have been big improvements overall. Links: PCSX2: https://pcsx2.net/ TurboGrafx 16 / PC Engine This is only going to be covering the basic system and not the CD or the SuperGrafx. For the totally new to emulation person Ootake is a great little emulator which is very simple to use. While it does emulate the CD it does require you to mount the disk image. Another good emulator choice is MagicEngine but it is not free so you would have to buy a copy of it. Links: Ootake: http://www.emulator-zone.com/doc.php/pcengine/ootake.html MagicEngine: http://www.magicengine.com/uk_index.php?sessid=PtxobxixD-vjQWg00krsGAw6LGBA Arcade There is only one real option here and that is the grand daddy of arcade emulators, Mame. While not super user friendly it is the best and most reliable way of emulating the arcade stuff. More information further below in Section 4. There is the emulator Final Burn Alpha (FBA) but I really do not recommend using this as a new user at all, finding good rom sets for this can be quite troublesome. This is not to say that FBA is a bad emulator because it isn't at all, it's quite good but it is not better than Mame and more troublesome when starting out. Links: Mame: http://mamedev.org/ Honorable Mention Emulators I wanted to mention 2 multi system emulators that are quite good, Mednafen and Bizhawk. Both of these do a very excellent job but do have some minor drawbacks that hold them back just a bit. Mednafen is amazing and easily does the best job at emulating the TurboGrafx16/CD, Playstation and Saturn but the lack of a built in UI really hinders it for new people. There are 3rd party UIs you can get for it I have found them to be lacking in the user friendliness department as well, something to look into though if you want to look into it. Bizhawk is also a great multi system emulator and has a nice user friendly UI, very easy to set and a nice built in bios checker so you know if your bios files are good or not. A lot of the "cores" it uses to emulate specific systems are based on other emulators code much like Retroarch does and their NES core is 100% accurate (their claims). Some of Bizhawks emulator cores are based off of Mednafens code. Links: Mednafen: https://mednafen.github.io/ Bizhawk: http://tasvideos.org/BizHawk/ReleaseHistory.html Section 2: Where to get roms and what to watch out for ? I certainly cannot and won't be providing any links to rom sites I will give some site names that you can use Google to find. The internet archive has quite a lot of stuff and they have a copyright exemption which means they are legally allowed to have their downloads. They should be the first place you look for stuff and you do need to register an account. Emuparadise has a lot of roms for most every system but you should only use it for cart based consoles. Their CD based disk images can be hit or miss in terms of quality and some emulators may or may not work with them. Their forums are actually a much better source for stuff than their main site and you will need to register a free forum account to get access to the downloads. Another site that is decent for some stuff is theisozone but I only use that site if I can't find what I am looking for elsewhere. If by some chance neither of these 3 sites has what you are looking for in terms of console based systems then you may have to dig deeper into Googles search but what you find could be hit or miss, there are a lot of old and bad roms and disk images out there and shady sites looking to make you jump through ad loops to get what you want. To get romsets for Mame I highly suggest using the pleasuredome. When looking for cart based console games you will want to look for sets that are known as the "No-Intro" sets. These are clean perfectly dumped rom images and generally you need these as a base when patching a rom for a rom hack. For CD based systems you will want to look for disk image dumps from the groups "ReDump" and "DarkWater" if you see these names in the name of a download the chances are very high that these are perfect disk images and they should be in the format of 2 files, a .cue and .bin (sometimes multiple .bin files), if what you are downloading is not from one of these two groups you may very well end up with a bad disk image that won't work with the better quality emulators. Emuparadise and The Iso Zone have both removed all their download links which does make like a little more difficult to get games. However the EmuParadise forums (as of me writing this) are still functional and have all sorts of goodies including full sets. The Iso Zone staff have made a new site called RetroZone and they in the process of moving everything over to there. For arcade roms this gets a little bit tricky and I will talk about this further down below in the guide in Section 4. Section 3: Bios and other files. Bios are simply put the firmware or operating system of a console, that is an over simplification but you get the idea and some emulators require them to work properly. Just like with normal game roms I cannot and won't provide any links to them, they are covered by the same copyright laws and protections. Generally speaking it is most commonly required to emulate CD based systems but occasionally you will need them for a non CD based systems such as the Famicom Disk System for example. This is something you will have to check the emulators documentation to find out whether a bios file/s is required or not and where they should be located on your system in relation to the emulator. Some emulators require you to place them in a specific folder while others will just ask you where you have them located. Also the emulator may give you more details such as a correct MD5 checksum to make sure you have the right file (more on MD5 checksums below). If you plan on playing games from multiple regions you will need the bios for each region or else they will not work. Special Chips: I mentioned earlier in the Super Nintendo section about special chip dumps being required for BSnes and Higan to get full functionality and compatibility. These special chips were chips used in certain specific games to give the Super Nintendo more processing power. The more accurate emulators like BSnes and Higan requires these chips while the Snes9x emulator does not because that emulator emulates those chips within the emulator. I mentioned before about MD5 checksums and you will need to check them to make sure they are correct. Sometimes you can just do a simple Google search, download and rename them to what the emulator is looking for specifically but this is not always they case. You will want to check the emulators documentation for information and hopefully they have the MD5 checksum listed and that way you can check yourself when you download a file if it is the correct one or not. If it has the correct MD5 you can simply rename it to what the emulator requires and it will work. Here are a couple of tools you can use to check your files for the proper MD5 checksum. The first is just a simple shell extension you install and in the properties window of a file there is a new tab called File Hashes, this has the info you need right there to look at and compare. Get it here link: http://implbits.com/products/hashtab/ download the Personal Free version, you don't need the paid for commercial version at all. Just to show you what it looks like here is the properties of my Sega CD bios file:A second option is WinMD5 which is also free but instead of a shell extension which integrates itself into Windows it's a stand alone executable file you simply load up and you can drag the bios file on to it and it will display the information. Here is a screenshot of my same Sega CD bios file. Link: http://winmd5.com/ Rom Patching This is something that is a little beyond the basics but it really is not that complicated and I felt it was worth covering. One really cool aspect of emulation is the ability to patch roms with hacks and translations so you can play those Japanese RPGS that never got an English port with full English translations. http://www.romhacking.net is a great site with nearly every hack you could ever want and you will want a good patching tool to apply those patches, Floating IPS (link: http://www.romhacking.net/utilities/1040/) is very easy to use and the patches come with instructions on how to apply the patch. Remember I mentioned the No-Intro rom sets earlier ? Those are generally what is required to patch, if you get roms that are not from a No-Intro set and the patch requires a good clean non headered rom you run a good chance of the patched rom having unintended glitches or not even work at all. Of course like anything else there are exceptions to this rule, sometimes a patch doesn't care or even requires some odd ball version of a rom. Always read the readme.txt file that comes with a rom patch for details. Section 4: Arcade Emulation While this is a little beyond the scope of this guide I did want to talk a bit about it because it's certainly one of the more popular things to emulate, for most people having a full arcade cabinet is not a feasible option let alone having multiple cabinets. Arcade boards are dumped into files for use with emulators differently than cart or CD based consoles. Also because of the nature of Mame development when you are just starting out you should obtain a Mame rom set that matches up with the version of Mame. Every month a new version of Mame gets released and with that the rom set gets updated, the impact this has can range from very minimal and inconsequential to most people all the way up to having a huge impact causing many games from a previous version to not work with the newer build of Mame. Over the years the really old rom dumps are almost certain to not work with newer versions of Mame. To get up to date Mame roms I highly recommend making an account on the pleasuredome website. They always have the newest sets that you can download using a torrent client. To download other stuff you will need to leave your torrent client running and build up an upload share ratio to gain access which for most people is not a realistic option, the Mame stuff is freely available to anyone though you do need to register for their site, there are more instructions on their site, read them carefully. For more information to get you started with Mame I have a written guide which should hopefully get you going with it: Section 5: Controllers This is going to come down to personal preference and what you like but generally speaking the Xbox 360 and Xbox One controllers for Windows are going to give you the most compatibility with little to no extra work to setup. If you are looking into other controllers, especially the cheaper retro style controllers do some research on them and see what other people have to say about them. Their quality and compatibility can vary greatly. My personal recommendation for a controller for the consoles that don't use an analog stick is the Hori Fight Commander which is reasonably priced and very high build quality. It has 6 face buttons and 4 shoulder buttons along with "select" and "start" making it very versatile and suit any console you are using. Of course this is just my opinion on the controller and people have their own personal preferences and tastes. Final thoughts There is a whole lot more that could be covered but I really wanted to keep this more oriented towards people that are completely new to emulation and just getting things up a running in a way that makes sense while avoiding certain pitfalls. I purposely avoided talking about old computer systems or the newer more modern emulators such as Cemu and RPCS3 those systems are much more complex to setup and / or are funky in terms of their emulation. There are of a lot of other systems and emulators I could have talked about but this guide already got pretty long and is meant to be a beginners guide for people, once you get started with these basics applying the same principles. If you feel like something is missing and really needed feel free to post a response and I will take it under consideration and adding it.
×
×
  • Create New...