RocketLauncher for LaunchBox (beta)
RocketLauncher for LaunchBox
* This is a standalone application.
What it is:
RocketLauncher for LaunchBox automates the configuration of RocketLauncher so that you can quickly and easily get setup to use bezels, fades, and other RocketLauncher features.
This app will read your LaunchBox configuration, convert the platforms to their RocketLauncher-friendly naming convention, let you choose RocketLauncher features to enable, and then write everything into RocketLauncher's configuration files. The conversions are largely powered by the included XML files -- PlatformIntegration.xml and EmulatorIntegration.xml. These are updated as the app runs. The default setup of PlatformIntegration lists all the RocketLauncher-supported platforms, the LaunchBox equivalent if the platform is supported there, and whether or not that platform supports MultiGame (disc-swapping).
* I don't know all the platforms that support MultiGame. I currently have Sega CD, Mega-CD, Panasonic 3DO, Sony Playstation and Microsoft Xbox setup to support MultiGame. Let me know which ones I've missed and I'll update the default settings for everyone!
Zipped Roms: the app will enable this feature on a platform-by-platform basis if it finds any zipped roms for the platform in LaunchBox.
MultiGame: this is the disc-swapping feature of RocketLauncher, and will be enabled on platforms that support disc swapping (Sega CD, Mega-CD, Playstation, and 3DO -- let me know which platforms I'm missing!)
Bezels (Overlays): Custom borders around the edge of the screen while playing a game.
Fade In: Game loading screen.
Fade Out: Game exit/closing screen.
(Hyper)Pause: Pause menu that lets you browse game manuals, videos, soundtracks, etc.
Before Running the App:
Some people may need to double-check their setup to get full functionality of the app if you have customized your platform or emulator names in LaunchBox, or to be sure you can use disc-swapping via RocketLauncher. Plus, if you haven't already, you'll need to install RocketLauncher. Here's the steps if any of those things apply to your setup:
Backup your LaunchBox Data folder:
As always, before running any kind of tool that will modify your configuration, it's best to backup that configuration -- just in case. I've tested this on my own system and setup, and made a ton of fake setups to test it out, and it worked well. Still, can't be too careful.
Browse to your LaunchBox install folder.
Copy the Data folder, and paste it somewhere safe. Maybe create a Backups folder somewhere if you haven't already done so.
If you have cloud-sync turned on, I recommend you turn it off for this app. If you use the cloud sync option in LaunchBox (Cloud -> Sync to My Collection), then you will either need to make sure LaunchBox is disconnected (Cloud -> Disconnect), or that you keep LaunchBox open and run the sync again once everything is finished. Otherwise, whenever you close or open LaunchBox all of the changes will be overwritten as your cloud sync gets restored.
If you have given any of your platforms custom names, make sure the Scrape As was populated for that platform. If you're sure it was, you can skip this step. If you started using LaunchBox before "Scrape As" was a feature, it may be missing in your configuration, please verify by following the steps below.
In LaunchBox, go to Tools -> Manage Platforms.
Open any platform where you're using a name other than the LaunchBox default, and make sure the "Scrape As" field is populated correctly.
If you have a platform missing on the RocketLauncher tab, it's most likely because the Scrape As field wasn't saved into configuration. Please try doing the above, then running the app again.
If you are using custom names for emulators (other than the actual name of the emulator -- like calling RetroArch "Multi-Platform Emulator" or something), you'll need to rename the emulator to the actual emulator name. This is something I may automate at some point, but it seems like an uncommon case. To rename your emulators, do the following:
In LaunchBox, go to Tools -> Manage Emulators.
Rename any emulators with non-standard names (calling it something other than the name of the emulator).
RocketLauncher disc-swapping requires games to have a certain naming convention. You're probably already using this naming convention, but if not, you'll need to rename your multi-disc roms to their expected format. You can see instructions on that naming convention here: MultiGame - RocketLauncher Wiki
There is also a custom pause menu for changing discs that looks amazing. More details on that can be found here: Pause Change Disc Menu - RocketLauncher Wiki
Essentially, it will involve adding media to RocketLauncher/Media/MultiGame/[PlatformName]/[GameName]/*.png
Download RocketLauncher from RocketLauncher Download
Unzip to wherever you want RocketLauncher installed (Note: the password to unzip the file is www.rlauncher.com)
RocketLauncher Base Media Pack
Download the RocketLauncher Base Media Pack from RocketLauncher Base Media Pack Download
Unzip it and copy the Media folder to your RocketLauncher install folder, let it replace any existing files.
This contains extra and default media, bezels, fades, etc. from RocketLauncher, all of which are contained in RocketLauncher/Media.
Run the RocketLauncher Update
Once installed, you'll need to make sure you have the latest modules, etc. installed.
Open RocketLauncherUI.exe from the RocketLauncher/RocketLauncherUI folder. When it opens for the first time, it creates all the default configuration files that we're going to update with our app.
When RocketLauncherUI opens, if you are prompted to check for updates, click OK.
This will open the Auto Updater window. It will not start checking for updates by itself, you'll need to click "Check Updates" in the bottom left. Otherwise you'll sit there and start a countdown timer until swearing begins.
After clicking "Check Updates" it will go out and do its thing, click OK when the results notification comes up. Then click "Apply Updates".
After the updates actually download, you'll get a notification to install the updates. Click OK.
If there was a Critical Update included in the download, you'll get a warning notification. Click OK.
After everything installs, you'll get a success notification with a prompt saying that RocketLauncherUI will restart for the updates to take effect. Click OK.
Once RocketLauncherUI re-opens, close it. We're finished with RocketLauncher.
* You'll need to check back for updates regularly as, anytime an emulator is updated, the RocketLauncher Module that wraps around that emulator to provide the extra functionality (bezels, fades, etc.) will also need to be updated.
RocketLauncher for LaunchBox:
* One more thing! Make sure RocketLauncher is closed before running the app. RocketLauncher doesn't like its .ini files being modified while RocketLauncher is open and reading from them.
Now then, here we go:
1. Open the app and tell it where your LaunchBox and RocketLauncher installations live. Then either click Next or the now-enabled LaunchBox button.
After clicking either button, the app will analyze your LaunchBox configuration and list any platforms that need to be renamed to Rocketlauncher-friendly platform names. It will also notify you if it couldn't find a certain platform, with instructions on how to fix that error.
2. Click the "Rename" button and the app will update all of your LaunchBox configuration files, and all platform-named folders (media, manuals, etc.), to the RocketLauncher-friendly name. Once complete, the Next and RocketLauncher buttons become available. Click either (they take you to the same place). As there are multiple Arcade and PC platforms in RocketLauncher, please note that Arcade will be renamed to MAME, and Windows will be renamed to Microsoft Windows. If one of your platforms does not get renamed, please try the "Before Running the App" -> "Platforms" step above.
At this point, it is setting up the global configuration of RocketLauncher. Global configuration basically means setting defaults that, unless otherwise configured, will be used by a platform. It's setting up your frontend as LaunchBox (pointing to BigBox.exe -- if you want it to point to LaunchBox.exe, you'll need to go into RocketLauncher, click the RocketLauncherUI tab, click the Frontends tab, then edit the LaunchBox frontend entry to point to LaunchBox.exe instead of BigBox.exe). It's adding all your LaunchBox emulators as Global Emulators along with the rom extensions for games using those emulators. It's setting each emulator and rom path for each platform. Finally, it's setting 7zip and MultiGame options.
3. Once all that is done, the RocketLauncher feature options load in the app. Here, you can specify which features you want to enable on a platform-by-platform basis, or you can "Select All" for a feature to enable that feature for all platforms. Once ready, click Save and you're done with the app.
To enable this integration, you'll need to do a couple things. I'll likely automate this in the future, but for now:
Add RocketLauncher as an emulator in LaunchBox:
Go to Tools -> Manage Emulators. If you don't have RocketLauncher set up as an emulator here, add it now. Use these settings
Emulator Name: RocketLauncher
Emulator Application Path: (The folder where you installed RocketLauncher)
Default Command-Line Parameters: -f "%launchboxorbigboxexepath%" -p "LaunchBox" -s "%platform%" -r
Click OK and close out of Manage Emulators.
Set RocketLauncher as the preferred emulator for your games:
Wherever you would like to enable RocketLauncher -- whether for a certain platform, a category of platforms, a playlist or all games, select the appropriate option in the LaunchBox left navigation.
Select all games. You can do that by clicking a game and then hitting Ctrl + A.
Right-click on one of those games and select Edit.
This opens the Bulk Edit Wizard. The field you want to change is Emulator, and the value you want to set is RocketLauncher.
Click Next and that will change all of the selected games to use the RocketLauncher emulator.
Adding Bezels, Fades, Pause:
Your RocketLauncher install should have come with some default media for these features, but there are amazing people out there with a ton of custom media, such as @RetroGaming's RocketLauncher Experience. You'll need to download any additional media you would like to use for these features and add them to the appropriate folders in your RocketLauncher installation's Media folder.
If you want to further customize any additional RocketLauncher features and functionality, I highly recommend colpipes1978's video tutorial series on LaunchBox and RocketLauncher. In the video descriptions, he also includes links to download the media he uses for each platform he sets up. They're very clear instructional videos that make set up easy.
Thanks to everyone for making this such a fantastic community, and to the LaunchBox team for making this an amazing platform.
If you have any questions or issues with the app, feel free to post on the support page or message me directly.
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