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Is it possible to disable "P" for Pause for certain games? Or platforms?


Johnny T
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Hi all,

For the first time since the 1980's, I had a game of Rebelstar yesterday. I played it using the Spectrum emulator through Retroarch.

It was a great bit of gaming nostalgia - the only problem was that "Pickup object" uses the "P" key. But pressing "P" takes me to the Big Box Pause screen.

Is there a way to disable Pause for certain games? Or, at least, change the key used (you would never need to 'pause' Rebelstar anyway as it just a turned based strategy game).

Thanks

(PS. I lost - in case you were wondering). 🙂

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2 hours ago, Johnny T said:

Hi all,

For the first time since the 1980's, I had a game of Rebelstar yesterday. I played it using the Spectrum emulator through Retroarch.

It was a great bit of gaming nostalgia - the only problem was that "Pickup object" uses the "P" key. But pressing "P" takes me to the Big Box Pause screen.

Is there a way to disable Pause for certain games? Or, at least, change the key used (you would never need to 'pause' Rebelstar anyway as it just a turned based strategy game).

Thanks

(PS. I lost - in case you were wondering). 🙂

You can use any key you like just set it in the controller mappings section. Also why not just use a controller for spectrum? Q, A, O, P, and space wasn't fun in the 80's, even less so now.

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4 minutes ago, neil9000 said:

You can use any key you like just set it in the controller mappings section. Also why not just use a controller for spectrum? Q, A, O, P, and space wasn't fun in the 80's, even less so now.

Thanks for getting back to me Neil.

Which controller mapping section? Within Retroarch? Or within Big Box? Or somewhere else?

Good point about Q,A,O,P. I suppose I've just always assumed the Speccy would need a keyboard so never really looked into using a controller with it. 

I do use my cab controls for a few games (Atic Atac, Bruce Lee and a few other favourites) but I've not really started setting it up in earnest yet. I just had a hankering for Rebelstar yesterday. There's probably too many keys for a controller anyway for Rebelstar as you have Info / Pickup / Drop / Fire / Snapshot / Aimed shot etc etc...

:)

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6 minutes ago, Johnny T said:

Which controller mapping section? Within Retroarch? Or within Big Box? Or somewhere else?

The pause screen is a Launchbox feature, so it's a Launchbox option, Tools/Options/Controller Mappings.

7 minutes ago, Johnny T said:

Good point about Q,A,O,P. I suppose I've just always assumed the Speccy would need a keyboard so never really looked into using a controller with it. 

I'm using the Fuse core, Quick menu/controls/player 1/ i set it to kempston joystick, which will work with 95% of games. Most games at launch will say press a specific button for Kempston mode, you pull up the onscreen keyboard with back/select and press the button the game wants for kempston. Treasure Island Dizzy for example wants K to start in kempston mode.

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10 minutes ago, neil9000 said:

The pause screen is a Launchbox feature, so it's a Launchbox option, Tools/Options/Controller Mappings.

I'm using the Fuse core, Quick menu/controls/player 1/ i set it to kempston joystick, which will work with 95% of games. Most games at launch will say press a specific button for Kempston mode, you pull up the onscreen keyboard with back/select and press the button the game wants for kempston. Treasure Island Dizzy for example wants K to start in kempston mode.

I'll be definitely trying your Kempston tip!! Thanks!!! I've previously been trying to map keys individually on each game. I've done about 10 of my favourites but it's really laborious. Didn't realise there was a quick way!! Soooo glad I spoke to you before I embarked on doing a lot more. :)

I checked Tools/Options/Controller Mappings in LB and I don't have anything mapped to the Pause button??

 

424856754_Screenshot2022-07-11115459.thumb.png.da164b524aa26d75c7477f8c3e11077f.png

 

848827788_Screenshot2022-07-11115518.thumb.png.aa1a155b62fa0839863d82b2db403461.png

 

Am I supposed to have Enable Game Controller ticked? And then put something in the Pause mapping??

Also, is it definitely Launchbox I should be in? I use Big Box on my machine? Just want to make sure I'm tinkering with the right bit?

Thanks for your help (and patience!) :)

 

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29 minutes ago, Johnny T said:

I'll be definitely trying your Kempston tip!! Thanks!!! I've previously been trying to map keys individually on each game. I've done about 10 of my favourites but it's really laborious. Didn't realise there was a quick way!! Soooo glad I spoke to you before I embarked on doing a lot more. :)

I checked Tools/Options/Controller Mappings in LB and I don't have anything mapped to the Pause button??

 

424856754_Screenshot2022-07-11115459.thumb.png.da164b524aa26d75c7477f8c3e11077f.png

 

848827788_Screenshot2022-07-11115518.thumb.png.aa1a155b62fa0839863d82b2db403461.png

 

Am I supposed to have Enable Game Controller ticked? And then put something in the Pause mapping??

Also, is it definitely Launchbox I should be in? I use Big Box on my machine? Just want to make sure I'm tinkering with the right bit?

Thanks for your help (and patience!) :)

 

My bad, its in Tools/options/Game Pause.

image.thumb.png.9e4cd0660dc5bb84342dbdfcb69224cf.png

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Okay, thanks. That's a generic setting unfortunately. But, not to worry, I'll try messing around with the settings in Retroarch and see if there's some way of doing it for that game specifically.

Thanks for all your help :)

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Not sure if anyone mentioned this, but there's a feature in RetroArch called "Game Focus". By default it's toggled by pressing Scroll Lock. Once pressed it ignores RetroArch hotkeys so you can focus on games that require a keyboard to play.

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18 minutes ago, faeran said:

Not sure if anyone mentioned this, but there's a feature in RetroArch called "Game Focus". By default it's toggled by pressing Scroll Lock. Once pressed it ignores RetroArch hotkeys so you can focus on games that require a keyboard to play.

Thanks @faeran that's handy to know :) 

I'm not sure if I'll be able to achieve what I want in this instance.

My game has a 'fixed' key of "P" for Pickup.

I can turn on Game Focus but I think LB/BB will still pick up on "P" being pressed and show the Pause screen.

I can turn off Pause in LB/BB but then that applies to every game on every system which I don't want.

I'm not sure there's a solution for this particular problem at the moment?

Really appreciate you adding your advice though :):) 

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6 hours ago, neil9000 said:

The pause screen is a Launchbox feature, so it's a Launchbox option, Tools/Options/Controller Mappings.

I'm using the Fuse core, Quick menu/controls/player 1/ i set it to kempston joystick, which will work with 95% of games. Most games at launch will say press a specific button for Kempston mode, you pull up the onscreen keyboard with back/select and press the button the game wants for kempston. Treasure Island Dizzy for example wants K to start in kempston mode.

@neil9000 not really on-topic but I just tried your method tonight - I set up a new install of RetroArch - I entered the Quick Menu and changed controls for Player 1 to a Kempston joystick. 

I then started Atic Atac and chose the Kempston joystick and my little knight just runs to the top right of the room and constantly fires without any keys on my controller being pressed?

I am using a cheap 'wired' X-box 360 controller and, in the main controls for Player 1 (i.e. NOT the quick menu but the global menu) it shows up fine?

image.thumb.png.3662b08847fae611df95d16d28ea23aa.png

 

Do I need a different type of physical controller?

Or am I missing a setting somewhere?

I only ask as the Spectrum is my favourite platform and the reason for my misspent youth. I would love to be able to quickly get 95% of the games working with a controller if it was possible. 

Thanks for your help :)

 

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19 minutes ago, Johnny T said:

@neil9000 not really on-topic but I just tried your method tonight - I set up a new install of RetroArch - I entered the Quick Menu and changed controls for Player 1 to a Kempston joystick. 

I then started Atic Atac and chose the Kempston joystick and my little knight just runs to the top right of the room and constantly fires without any keys on my controller being pressed?

I am using a cheap 'wired' X-box 360 controller and, in the main controls for Player 1 (i.e. NOT the quick menu but the global menu) it shows up fine?

image.thumb.png.3662b08847fae611df95d16d28ea23aa.png

 

Do I need a different type of physical controller?

Or am I missing a setting somewhere?

I only ask as the Spectrum is my favourite platform and the reason for my misspent youth. I would love to be able to quickly get 95% of the games working with a controller if it was possible. 

Thanks for your help :)

 

OK, just tested here and mine does the same when set to Kempston, not sure why that is as i havent seen that before. However Atic Atac also says press 3 for cursor joystick, so i tested that and it works fine. So load that game go to quick menu/controls and set it to "Cursor Joystick" and save a game remap so that game always uses that control stick.

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9 minutes ago, Johnny T said:

Ahhh... okay so I managed to pick the one game with problems :) Yep, sounds like me.

Thanks for all your help :) 

Kempston is a good base as most games work with that, but you may need to change some games on a singular basis, but that is why we have remaps that can be saved as core, content directory, or game remaps.

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1 hour ago, neil9000 said:

Kempston is a good base as most games work with that, but you may need to change some games on a singular basis, but that is why we have remaps that can be saved as core, content directory, or game remaps.

Yep, I was thinking of having 2 platforms in BB. Spectrum - Controller and Spectrum - Keyboard (as there will be quite a lot of games that a controller won't work for).

I'm not sure if that's a good idea or not? What do you think? For the Controller one I'll just use Kempston as a base as you advise. 

As I said, Speccy was my first computer so I would love to get a load of the old games working. Was playing Jet Set Willy earlier and even the music brought a big smile to my face. :) 

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