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C64 Dreams (massive curated C64 collection)


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On 12/10/2021 at 6:24 AM, Wild Siren said:

I don't intend to mess anything up. I just want to add many custom fields to the existing games. And to do that, the names have to agree. I don't even need to change the names. Just match them and add metadata so that it is consistent with the rest of my collection (other platforms) etc.

So long as that doesn't involve renaming, moving, or changing, well, basically anything within the main C64 Dreams folder (C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams (this one) ) that's fine. As soon as you do any of those things, however, you will break things. It's built upon layers and layers of scripts that use relative pathing and configs that are predicated on specific filenames.

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To let people know what's going on since I intended to post a progress update earlier, I've gone down another black hole of work, because of course I would.

I've been in the process of creating fanart boxes for every game in the collection that doesn't have a box currently and then creating 3D box versions as well. The 3D box part luckily I can automate but the fanart boxes, hoo boy is that some tedious-ass time-consuming work. I've been working on them for days now and I'm currently sitting at 218 complete with 211 to go. In fairness, a decent chunk of time was dedicated to just creating the template in the first place, mimicking those originally created by Lassiveran of which there are no shortage already in the collection, and then inevitably making revisions and improvements and then having to go back through and re-create the ones I'd already done (multiple times over). They're slightly smaller than Lassiveran's by design because those are sized in such a way that the screenshots are scaled by an uneven integer which results in some blurring. These are sized so that the screenshots are exactly 640x400 i.e. 2x scaled with nearest neighbor scaling. I'm pretty happy with the end result but it's a time-consuming process because these require a lot of by-hand attention for each one, even after streamlining things as much as possible. I'm hoping to have the rest finished within a week. The ultimate goal being that once all of them are done there will be no games in the collection that are only using screenshots for covers. This is something that's bugged me for quite a while so it'll be nice to have that squared away.

Once that's all done I'll be getting back to business as normal. I have 2882 of the current 2900 games tested and done. My plan once I finish going through all 2900 is to release a public test as a fair bit of backend stuff has changed since v0.35 and I want people to beat on this as much as possible and report any issues before I do a proper release.

Anyway, that's it for now. More to come (hopefully) soon!



EDIT: Oh, and I almost forgot. Just for good measure I've been going through and color and contrast-correcting the screenshots in the collection as large portions of GB64's screenshots have a bizarre red-tint or low-contrast where black is gray... yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay :|



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15 hours ago, SmashinGit said:

Thanks Zombeaver for all your hard work and dedication. Hope you and your family have a very happy christmas and new year.

Thank you! I really appreciate that. :)

8 minutes ago, sharkytowers said:

Does anyone know of anything like this for other demo scene content or DOS stuff?  Really anything at this level?  I wouldn't expect so.

Thanks @Zombeaver!  This is truly something special.

There are the eXo projects (eXoDOS, eXoWin3x, and eXoScummVM). I'd highly recommend those. You can find more info at https://www.retro-exo.com/ That's the only other close equivalent for other platforms that I know of.

The plan is to eventually do Amiga Dreams in the same format but that won't be until C64 Dreams is closer to what I would consider "complete" so likely still years off.

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28 minutes ago, Zombeaver said:

Thank you! I really appreciate that. :)

There are the eXo projects (eXoDOS, eXoWin3x, and eXoScummVM). I'd highly recommend those. You can find more info at https://www.retro-exo.com/ That's the only other close equivalent for other platforms that I know of.

The plan is to eventually do Amiga Dreams in the same format but that won't be until C64 Dreams is closer to what I would consider "complete" so likely still years off.

OMG that is so cool!  And if I wouldn't have found your project, I wouldn't have been turned on to those!  I'm kind of freaking out right now.  This is too cool.

Real quick...  maybe a dumb question, but I don't want to screw something up...  should I replace

.\C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams\Magazines

with the entire Magazines directory from the add-on?  Or should that live somewhere else?  Sorry if that's been answered...  I can't find it.

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8 minutes ago, sharkytowers said:

Real quick...  maybe a dumb question, but I don't want to screw something up...  should I replace

.\C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams\Magazines

with the entire Magazines directory from the add-on?  Or should that live somewhere else?  Sorry if that's been answered...  I can't find it.

You drop it in and merge with (not replace) that folder. By default only the web versions are included, the magazine module just adds in the local magazine files themselves.

Afterwards if you want the default launch behavior in Launchbox to be with the local versions of the magazines rather than web you'll need to go into the Magazines\!XMLs folder and then copy the Magazines.xml from within the "Default Local" folder and replace the one in C64 Dreams\Data\Platforms. If you ever want to reverse this behavior you can do the same but use the xml located in the "Default Web" folder.

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Alright y'all, all the remaining fanart boxes are now done and all 2900 games in the current WIP are tested and good to go, which means it's time to do the public test. If anyone has any issues, please let me know so I can address them (if possible) before the actual release of v0.45. I'll be working on the remaining 100 games for the update in the interim so that should give you guys some time to beat on it. I would not recommend importing this into an existing Launchbox library since you'll have to do it all over again in a few weeks once the final release is out. I'll save the exhaustive changelog (which is quite massive at this point) until the actual release of v0.45 but some points of interest are below:

  • The primary new feature in v0.45 is Zzap! 64 review integration so that you can now right-click on a game and, if it has a review, you can jump right to the review, either via web or local copy (if you have the magazine module installed)
  • All Zzap! 64 reviewed games are in their own playlist in Launchbox so that you can quickly access all relevant games at once
  • A randomized playlist of SID music plays whenever you start magazines or specific Zzap! 64 reviews - this can be disabled via the Configurator.exe if so desired; please note that this only works for the local versions of the magazines currently; while playing, you can display the music player via Numpad 8, hide it via Numpad 2, pause/resume via Numpad 5, change to the next track via Numpad 6, and change to the previous track via Numpad 4; pressing Escape will close both the reader and the music player
  • Most of the second and third Zzap! 64 reviews (cases where they reviewed a game more than once) aren't in LB currently (they will be on the final release) but are still accessible by either going to the individual game's folder, accessing the Zzap Review subfolder, and then starting the url or .vbs (for web or local versions) for the second/third reviews or by going to the C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams\Magazines\Zzap! 64\!Reviews Index folder and then accessing them by either the separate issue folders or from the combined folder - all of the reviews spanning all Zzap! 64 issues are available here, even the games that aren't currently in the collection, but only the web versions are available in cases where the game isn't in the collection
  • Interactive codewheels have been added for The Bard's Tale III, Chip's Challenge, Curse of the Azure Bonds, Demon Stalkers, Hillsfar, Legacy of the Ancients, Mars Saga, Neuromancer, Pool of Radiance, Rocket Ranger, and Sorcerer (Infocom); these are accessible via the right-click menu for each game or by starting the [Game Name] Codewheel.vbs files in the game folders
  • There are now sound effects for opening and closing manuals; I've also improved the startup smoothness when manuals are used and there's now a brief fade in animation on initial boot (may or may not be visible depending on your monitor settings) and the game audio now fades in when switching back to it rather than starting abruptly
  • The keyboard keys for zooming in and out in manuals have been changed to use "I" and "O" instead of "+" and "-" in order to accommodate international keyboards (thanks for bringing this to my attention @bbneo!)
  • The controller buttons for zooming in and out in manuals are still LB and RB but this is no longer handled by AHK - I've shifted that over to Antimicro as I've found AHK's joystick button handling to be inconsistent/broken especially in Windows 10 post-Anniversary Update, I've had no issues with it via Antimicro
  • One game that I'd like people to mess around with (at least briefly) because it's a unique case is Deus Ex Machina - this is a very strange and interesting game-as-art title (perhaps the first of its kind) that was designed to have an audio cassette played alongside the game, and has to be synced up at the beginning of the game - I have this setup and functional but would appreciate others trying it out for themselves - you'll need to consult the note overlay for the audio controls (pausing and resuming, changing from side A to B etc.)

Latest 100 games added:

APB - All Points Bulletin
Battletech - The Crescent Hawk's Inception
Blue Baron
Colossal Cave Adventure
Count Duckula II
Dark Sky Over Paradise, A
Dragon Wars
Earl the Tomb Robber [Not in the DB]
Exploding Fist+
Helter Skelter
Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
Kokotoni Wilf
Little Puff in Dragonland
Live and Let Die
Lone Wolf - The Mirror of Death
Masters of the Universe - The Movie
Match Day II
Maze Mania
Meganova - The Weapon
Midsummer Olympics [Not in the DB]
Mighty Bombjack
Millenium Warriors
Mr. Heli
Neverending Story II, The
Ninja Warriors, The
Olli & Lissa 3 - The Candlelight Adventure
Out Run
Paradroid - Competition Edition
Phileas Fogg's Balloon Battles
Pipe Mania
Potsworth & Co
Powerboat USA - Offshore Superboat Racing
PP Hammer
Predator 2
Prison Riot
Rad Ramp Racer
Rally Cross (Codemasters)
Red Storm Rising
Return of the Jedi
Saint Dragon
Samurai Trilogy
Santa's Xmas Caper
Scramble Spirits
Security Alert
Silent Shadow
Ski or Die
Skull & Crossbones
Sky High Stuntman
Soccer Pinball
Sonic Boom
Space Crusade
Star Control
Star Trek - The Promethean Prophecy
Steg the Slug
Strider II
Stryker in the Crypts of Trogan
STUN Runner
Stuntman Seymour
Super Seymour
Super Space Invaders
Super Tank Simulator
Superkid in Space
Supremacy - 30th Anniversary Edition [Not in the DB]
Tarzan Goes Ape!
Terminator II - Judgement Day
Terry's Big Adventure
Thunderbirds (Grandslam)
Time Soldier
Time Thief
Tintin on the Moon
Tom & Jerry
Top Cat - Beverly Hills Cats
Turbo the Tortoise
Uridium Plus
Vindicator!, The
Warlock - The Avenger
Who Dares Wins
Wild Streets

You can also find an updated game details spreadsheet for the current set here. All the new games for v0.45 are at the bottom after Zynax 3 (line 2504+).

C64 Dreams v0.45 Public Test Download

C64 Dreams v0.45 Magazine Module Download

C64 Dreams v0.45 Public Test Download (Mediafire mirror)

C64 Dreams v0.45 Magazine Module Download (Mediafire mirror)

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@bundangdon @RetroX Thanks guys! This update's been a really long and difficult road but I'm finally in light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel territory now. It makes me fairly uncomfortable to have 9 months and 1000+ hours of work since the last update without any kind of testing feedback from others though - I don't want to dust my hands off after all that and then have some weird issue pop up out of nowhere that I didn't account for; so I'm hoping the next couple weeks will give folks some time to dig in and report any problems so I can address them before the proper release of v0.45. I try to be as thorough as I possibly can but I've learned that's never enough on its own since ultimately I can only account for so many scenarios, so many combinations of hardware and software, etc. @bbneo's international keyboard issue exemplifies that perfectly.

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Congratulations once more @Zombeaver

I did a vanilla installation.

Two issues so far

1)When I try to read the local pdf mag it adds another level of subfolder in the path so it fails to find it (attached...mind the C64 Dreams subfolder appearing twice in the path)

2)When I click on a game, its music starts but it never ends and if I click another it has both musics playing. 


Thanx for all your hard work


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@Wally the path shown is correct. That's where they should be. C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams\Magazines\[Magazine Name]. You need to merge in the Magazine folder with the one in C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams\Magazines. If you're a seeing what you're seeing it means you've put them in the wrong place.

You need to press Esc to exit the reader/close the music.


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1 hour ago, Wally said:

Thank you! Works like a charm

Good deal 👍

I realize the C64 Dreams\C64 Dreams folder name convention may be somewhat unintuitive but it's because that first folder is actually just Launchbox - you can name it whatever you want but since it's usable as a standalone thing it's named C64 Dreams. The C64 Dreams subfolder is where all the real meat and potatoes are - it can be pulled out and used without a frontend at all, imported into an alternate frontend of your choice, or, as most people will likely do, imported into your own version of Launchbox, at which point you'll have Launchbox\C64 Dreams\Games etc.

@MikeDeltaHH I've added Mediafire mirrors to the earlier post.

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