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Phoenix001

The NOOBIEST of questions.

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Please bear with me.  My middle schooler and I are working on a father son project.  Having seen our friends arcade with over 3000 arcade games from my youth, we went online and bought a miniarcade.  But we know nothing about emulators and such.

So we have all the hardware now,  we downloaded  Launchbox & I am having him install it.  But not sure what the next step is,  Now just trying to figure out conceptually what to do.  How do we now go about getting all those games? 

I understand LB is a "frontend" but then, so is retroarch?  We are just trying to get a basic idea of concepts and from what we gather so far, we cant unsderstand yet what a front end is and how it helps us play games.

In the meantime, I'm looking through the various videos but they seem still a bit ahead of me in terms of whats what.  I appreciate any feedback and guidance. TIA

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The front end is what you see and how you pick your games. Think Netflix. Netflix is the front end, The software they use in the background to play movies is the emulator and the movies are your roms. The emulator is the software that actually plays your games and emulates the old arcades. Roms which are the games themselves. So in Lunchbox you organize your whole game collection with artwork and set each system to run a specific emulator.  You pick your game and launchbox with start the emulator for the system you picked with the game you picked. Hope that makes it clear. Launchbox is just an organizer for all your games and systems.

Now, Retroarch is an emulator and it can emulate several diferent systems (Nintendo, Sega, Atari and so on). Retroarch also has it's own front end but their front end only supports systems Retroarch supports. We use Launchbox instead.

Lots of tutorials here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSIht6UXIEXIgz4eXAEShxA/videos

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Pro tip:

1. Set up your emulator of choice for the system you want emulate first. 

2. Test the games launch correctly and your controls work inside of the emulator. 

3. Then once you confirm it all works there add the emulator to Launchbox, then import your games. 

Doing this will ensure that if for some reason when you launch a game from within Launchbox/BigBox if the games do not work, we can eliminate it easily from being an emulator issue and go right to troubleshooting your Launchbox set up. Many time users will tell us it does not work only to find out they never set the emulator up correctly. 

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Good luck with your project! If you have any more questions just ask and someone will help you out. Watch some of the videos and read the above linked guide and you should be on your way.

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Thank you for the replies so far. The Netflix analogy makes sense. So in essence, since he wants to play old games like donkey Kong from the 80s I’ll have them figure out retro ark first and then use launch box as the organizer.

 

 Thank you for the replies so far. The Netflix analogy makes sense. So in essence, since he wants to play old games like donkey Kong from the 80s I’ll have them figure out retro ark first and then use launch box as the organizer.

 

 Lord, I will take a look at your link and read up on that this evening as well. I guess that’s one way for me to spend my birthday evening. Ha ha

 

Deeply appreciate it. 

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3 minutes ago, Phoenix001 said:

Thank you for the replies so far. The Netflix analogy makes sense. So in essence, since he wants to play old games like donkey Kong from the 80s I’ll have them figure out retro ark first and then use launch box as the organizer.

Stand alone Mame would probably be easier than using RA for arcade games like Donkey Kong and such. Not that there is anything wrong with using Retroarch. 

But yes, first figure out Retroarch or even Mame if you choose that route. Get it set up, running, and make sure game work and controls. Then tackle the Launchbox piece. 

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1 hour ago, Phoenix001 said:

 Lord, I will take a look at your link and read up on that this evening as well. I guess that’s one way for me to spend my birthday evening. Ha ha

Its the best way to spend your birthday! Happy birthday and welcome to the fray! 

Just some background. Retroarch is an emulator, but it is by no means the easiest. Not to confuse you, but Retroarch is actually a program that loads a bunch of emulators, called "cores" and you have to find the right core for the system/romset you're wanting to use. If you're looking to play old arcade games, you should probably start with MAME (the emulator), as stated above, and save retroarch for later. That will entail you downloading the MAME emulator, quick google search, and finding you a MAME romset first.

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Thank you all again.  This does a lot to increase our basic understanding and its much appreciated. .   I have my son starting to read up on the Mame tutorial for noobs and Emulation links above.   

 

MUCHO appreciated!

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Dude...you have no idea what you just did. You will be going down a rabbit hole with no end in sight. This is how it starts. For the next few years your life will revolve around this thing. You will want more games and more systems and better artwork. If you run into problems, don' get frustrated. Just ask and people here will be glad to help.

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4 hours ago, Styphelus said:

Dude...you have no idea what you just did. You will be going down a rabbit hole with no end in sight. This is how it starts. For the next few years your life will revolve around this thing. You will want more games and more systems and better artwork. If you run into problems, don' get frustrated. Just ask and people here will be glad to help.

Im getting that impression.  I started backwards, building the alphacade cabinet with the kids.  Hope to get some nes and snes roms tonight to start playing, then build from there.

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So I searched "alpha-cade" and only got 3 hits here. 

Using the SNES 9x stuff and trie to get the joystick from alphacade to work.  It interacts but I guess I have to configure the joystick?  Any forums suggested to read up on that?

 

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1 hour ago, Phoenix001 said:

So I searched "alpha-cade" and only got 3 hits here. 

Using the SNES 9x stuff and trie to get the joystick from alphacade to work.  It interacts but I guess I have to configure the joystick?  Any forums suggested to read up on that?

 

Each emulator should have its own controls configuration setting. You have to make sure you set them up, they do not always "just work".

You should be able to just open the input configuration settings and click each item and hit the corresponding button. Snes9x should accept inputs from x-input or d-input style controllers. So if your alphacade controls replicate keystrokes or controller button presses it will work. Just tested with both and no issues binding controls.

 

Screen Shot 2019-06-13 at 1.32.55 PM.png

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Thanks again. Been getting the kids excited as they are playing SNES games, and now are onto getting NEW emulator up, and finally mame. 

 

 

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