Archive for January, 2011

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Shmupmame version 3.0b

January 23, 2011

Shmupmame 3.0b is out now, still based on Mameplus! 99.
Get it here

A quick release to fix and improve the Cave PGM emulation, the improvements to the driver are:

-Coins now work properly for all games

-You can now record all games including DOJBL without nvram problems (but you will need to set the board to defaults in the setup menu (F2) before recording

-Backported the PGM video fixes (zooming and priority are now fixed)

-Audio Improvements for the Cave games

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Shmupmame version 3.0

January 19, 2011

Shmupmame 3.0 is finally released, it is based on Mameplus! 99.
Get it here

Major changes:
-The Yagawa raizing games (Garegga, Batrider and Bakraid) are finally lagless, I used a completely different method to fix this which was orders of magnitude more complex than the usual lagless fix, I will make a post soon detailing how it has been done. With this patch the games have one less frame of lag, which makes them perfectly playable in mame (finally), only Bakraid which was laggier still isn’t as tight as one could hope

 

-The Cave pgm emulation is now backported to mame99 using the new romset conventions (as of mame 141), I also modified the sound driver and the improvement is very noticeable compared to the mame141 driver.

 

-A total of 16 completely new lagless drivers See the Changelog for the complete list.

 

-Fixed Elevator Action Returns so that the lighting during the game works properly, shooting lights etc. will make rooms go dark as it does on pcb, it seems like a minor fix, but this effect is used a lot during the game and was sorely lacking.

 

-Added Sagaia (UK) a game which is not in mame, sent to me by a UK collector. It is in fact a remixed version of Darius 2!, take a look at the first level

 

-Backported some interesting stuff to mame99, namely the Seibu SPI fixes, which are now fully playable, I also included nvram files for Raiden Fighters 2 with all the fighters unlocked. I also backported TGM2 to mame 99, somewhat ironic considering it was first added in mame at version 99u3 and then immediately removed only the resurface in mame 129. Worthy of note is the fact that I used the old mame way of dealing with the idle loop in the psikyo sh games which means TGM 2 can run very well even on slow computers with that version (not so with new mame).

 

-Included Various volume and panning fixes, some games had audio clipping because the volume was to loud (DPP is a good example), some games had wrong balance (Strikers 2 for example had it’s music way too quiet) and some games should have been mono and were not (like Gundhara). About a dozen driver were modified that way

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mame 99 vs mame 140

January 13, 2011

After all why use mame 99, mame 140 is newer so it must be superior right?

Well, not exactly…

While the drivers in mame 140 are usually superior (not always the case), the emulator itself and it’s functionality has gotten worse over the years:

Mame 99 has savestate support for the all games, the reason why mamedev removed it at version 100 is that since *every* part of many systems were not fully emulated or understood saving and loading could cause some unpredictable behavior, often leading to crashes or corrupt graphics depending on the previous state before the load. That being said, it still worked the vast majority of the time. So starting with version 100 a lot of games with *working* savestates had that functionally removed.

The second important reason would be the use of the old rendering engine, since mame 107, mame is using a new form of rendering engine that combines audio and video syncing and that in theory should work better, in practice though it causes all kinds of smoothness problems and audio artifacts, all of this while taking up more system resources, great mame builds such as advancemame (build focused on video accuracy) halted because of this new rendering engine.

Yet another reason for going back is the great mame plus! build used around that time, it has tons of functionality that are simply missing even in current custom mame builds (like the new mame plus!). Some of these features are : Custom buttons support, Autofire support (with saved settings for later play), integer scaling (or clean stretch), more filtering options.

So this leaves us with newer drivers in the current mame version, well this is where I come in. I am backporting quite a few of the important shmup related fixes between 99 and 141 back to mameplus! 99. Hopefully at some point there will be no question as to which base version is superior.

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The official shmupmame WIP page

January 13, 2011

First of all, a link to the main discussion page (and where it all started) Shmupmame Thread on shmups forum

The main point of this site is to document the progress of shmupmame in a more in depth fashion, as the project is growing, the complexity of the patches keeps increasing. Which means the length of explanations of what I am doing and how it is achieved is also augmented. To the point where having all this information in the forum thread would have been a bit too much.