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Cannonball Outrun Retroarch and Launchbox Quick Guide

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The Retroarch guys now have a core for Cannonball which is an engine for Outrun with enhanced features such as 16:9 aspect ratio and 60 fps. You can find more details on it here: https://github.com/djyt/cannonball/wiki

Here's a video showing it off in Retroarch:

To get this working you will need to download the core like any other core, use the Online Updater. You will also need the rom file outrun.zip from your Mame rom set.

Next you will need to make a folder in your Retroarch\system\ folder called cannonball. In there you will extract the outrun.zip file so all the loose files are there, it should look like this:

1180447779_2018-05-2415_09_33-cannonball.thumb.png.12f28fe3f9163ce9e10f35bccbed7d9d.pngNow test to make sure it's working properly, start up Retroarch then Load Core and select the cannonball_libretro.dll, then Start Core from the Quick Menu. It should start right up if everything above was done correctly, if you get any messages about not loading content your rom file was incorrect.

The last part is to get it loading through Launchbox and since it's not like a normal rom and core we cant just tell a rom file to load with a core but it's still very simple. All we need to do is make a shortcut file of your retroarch.exe, you can keep it anywhere you want. Right click the shortcut file and click properties, in the Shortcut tab > Target box you will want to edit the target, simply type:

-L "cores\cannonball_libretro.dll"

after the retroarch.exe, it should look like this:
864068842_2018-05-2415_18_03-CannonballProperties.thumb.png.d7a08e6ebc2b93fb870a4fcffbb7db78.pngMake sure there is a space after retroarch.exe.

Run this shortcut file to make sure it works and if it does now you can just import the shortcut file like any other Windows shortcut file and game.

If your Target path has quotes in it already you will run into problems so here is a simple batch file you can run to load the game.

Just put the bat file right in the same folder as your retroarch.exe and you can either import the bat file or make a shortcut file pointing to the bat file and import that.

Boxart to go with it in your LB setup:


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I was having the same issue as dbalcar. Retroarch would crash as soon as trying to load the core then start the core. I tried using Retroarch 1.7.3 stable and nightly. I found a post on the Libretro forum addressing this issue. The work around, which worked for me, is to create a dummy file and name it cannonball.game. Put this file in the retroarch\system\cannonball directory along with your unzipped outrun.zip files . Now open Retroarch, load the cannonball core, the choose load content. Now choose the cannonball.game file as your rom file. The game starts right up as expected. You can import the cannonball.game file into launchbox using the cannonball core. I hope this helps. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Are you using the Mame core ? Because it doesn't use that, it has its own core.

If you are having problems with the method I described you can use the batch file method and just import the batch file as a stand alone executable game file with no emulator associated with it.


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  • 3 weeks later...

Ahhh!  I got it working - I recently updated my mame set to .199 - copied the contents again into the cannonball folder and tried everything again.  Worked 1st time.  No idea why but I'm happy now :)  Cheers

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  • 10 months later...
On 5/24/2018 at 3:22 PM, Lordmonkus said:

The last part is to get it loading through Launchbox and since it's not like a normal rom and core we cant just tell a rom file to load with a core but it's still very simple.


Seems with current versions (1.7.7 here), you need to load a dummy file named cannonball.game

Now you set it up just like any other core/rom and things like overrides work as well.

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  • 1 year later...

Here is how i got it to work:

1. Download the Cannonball Core in the Retroarch Programme

2. Create a Folder whereever you like or you put your Games in

3. You need the zipped Outrun Rom which is used for MAME

4. Unzip the Outrun Rom in your created Folder

5. Copy a file inside this created Folder where your unzipped Outrun roms are. It doesn´t matter what file.

You can theoretically take a Word Document, an Excel Document, a txt file etc. You can copy paste every file you want. 

6. Rename this file to cannonball.game

7. In Launchbox you click Tools, Manage Emulators

8. Double click Retroarch

9. choose the Tab Associated Platforms

10. Scroll Down to the Bottom and write in the empty cell Cannonball 

11. In the cell next to it under Cores you choose the file cannonball_libreto. You can find this file in your Folder Cores which is inside your Retroarch Folder

12. Click in the little square to make it as default Emulator

13. Click on Tools, Import, Roms

14. Choose the dummy file you created Cannonball.game

15. In the Window "What Platform are you importing Games for", write Cannonball

16. In the Window "Choose an Emulator", choose Retroarch in the Drop Down Menu

17. Then finish the Import

18. The Game should work start with this Set up

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Excellent, had to tweak around with the settings slightly to get this to import correctly, there is a step where it says "scrape as" or something similar, I had to leave that blank to get it to import.  I updated the meta-data so it would import the correct meta-data and then moved the category to under my arcade games and called it Outrun Remastered so it shows up there too.


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