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Shannon

Atarixlbox v7 for the Xbox released

  

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  1. 1. Which xbox emu should I work on next?

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Welcome!

 

btw everybody...

 

Al wants me to write up a little 1 paragraph blurb that he can post on the front page at some point. I have not gotten around to it yet though (I tend to be a ltitle wordy at times).

 

I need suggestions on what key to map the 5200 keypad too. The usual keyboard button is to press the left stick down, but since I have that mapped to the 5200 analog stick it is a little irritating to have it pop up while in the heat of the moment. I was thinking maybe LeftTrig+X?!?

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Al wants me to write up a little 1 paragraph blurb that he can post on the front page at some point. I have not gotten around to it yet though (I tend to be a ltitle wordy at times).

 

Well with all the improvements you put into it.. that's a tall order :lol:

 

I need suggestions on what key to map the 5200 keypad too. The usual keyboard button is to press the left stick down, but since I have that mapped to the 5200 analog stick it is a little irritating to have it pop up while in the heat of the moment. I was thinking maybe LeftTrig+X?!?

 

L trig + X.. That works for me :) By the way are you hand-recreating the overlays for each 5200 game? :-o

Edited by NE146

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L trig + X.. That works for me :) By the way are you hand-recreating the overlays for each 5200 game? :-o

 

Yeah, but there are only like 23 games that use an overlay anyways...

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ok. Seems I goofed on my little sample picture from earlier. That's what I get for not paying attention to the screen sizes when making the mock-up. Is it too large?

 

Here is a more "accurate" depiction. I know it takes up nearly all the screen, but shrinking down any more really blurs the text a bit. I have one more thing I think I can try...

 

Any comments on the analog control in missile command, centipede, pole position, etc?

Have not heard much on the miner skin either.

 

Ignore the spacing between the buttons. That is another thing I shoulda payed a little more attention too. :lol: Anyways I will correct that one. Now that I know what I should do..

 

Anyone notice anything unusual about the overlay? I made one change to it. Just wanted to see how observant you guys are.

 

Here is a sample of what it would like with a larger size....

I just love that .jpg/.png blur. :roll:

post-3211-1204722127_thumb.jpg

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lol. Well that was not what I was thinking, but that is true.

 

Actually there are three things differen't. One of which Mimo named....

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I already sent everyone a PM... here is just a copy of it...

 

I added a new menu option in the game configuration menu. It's under the "computer specific options" and it's called "Use built in disk menu". It is a menu disk designed to be able to read "megadisks" (I think that is the name of them).

 

Some of you might recognize it. It was made by Yogi Bear from Jellystone Park. I'm including a megadisk so you all can try it out. Just select the mega disk in the emulator and then go into the "computer specific options" and set "Use built in disk menu" to "Yes".

 

If anyone knows of anything better just let me know. My only criteria though is that it be small in size. That is one of the nice things about the Yogi disk.

 

Only other things are if you load/save state using a hotkey the menu wont look all funky.

 

There is a new default overlay, be sure to copy it over. The overlay is actually functional. The "Atari 5200 stick.ini" file I included has the virtual keyboard mapped to "left trig + x". You can copy it over to "saves\atarixlbox" or just map it yourself in the emu and save it back to "Atari 5200 stick".

 

Left stick or pad can be used to move the cursor. Right stick moves the overlay itself so you can move it out of the way (diagonal doesn't work yet, sorry). Black key changes the transparency so you can see underneath the overlay, white key increases transparency.

 

The emulator remembers the location of the overlay (and keyboard), plus the transparency, for each game so once you find a nice spot for it... icon_mrgreen.gif

 

The keyboard for computer games can be moved as well. Feel free to test it. Let me know if anything funky happens where it does not come up or is invisible. I think I got that little issue under control, but just in case.

post-3211-1204737621_thumb.png

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Any comments on the analog control in missile command, centipede, pole position, etc? Have not heard much on the miner skin either.

 

Because I haven't had a chance to try it out yet! :D Yeah I do things in sporadic spurts and as all the life/work stuff gets in the way. It took me a bit of focusing to sort it out as I obviously skipped over the previous release and jumped right into the new one.

 

First things off, the skin you sent wasn't the Miner skin, it was the original Xport one ;) 2nd. There still isn't an atarixlbox.ini included in the zips, so the rewind function (and maybe some other things?) still need to be activated manually. The whole issue of the .ini files and their associated settings to me seem to be the biggest problem right off the bat. For example playing Missile Command I noticed the overlay would come up when I clicked the Left thumbstick. But after going through the process of deleting older .ini's, the old E:\saves folder, etc. to fix the rewind function, the function then went as expected to the L-trigger + X button. So yeah I think any releases of this have to be pretty solid on the placement of the .ini files, have a complete "default" set of them, and also have some crystal clear instructions on where to delete previous configurations if any.

 

Ok those being said, I jumped right into 5200 missile command! Wow!! I think it I almost prefer the controls better than the 5200 original! And by that I mean it doesnt snap back into place when you let go of the joystick (or with the original 5200 sticks, when manually centering them). This makes it a little more playable in opinion although some may argue about that. Also Centipede is the same way.. very playable. The speed in both games seems fine. One thing I'm noticing is it seems the analog stick in those games is almost an 8-way movement and not really any points in-between. Is that the case?

 

I tried out Bounty Bob directly from the rom available here at AA. It didnt seem to recognize the cart and did not find a matching config like it seeems to do with most every other game. But after changing the machine type to 5200 & the cart type to Bounty Bob, I played it for the first time ever on emulator! Seems perfect! :D

 

Pole Position on the other hand seems to have a problem. I can't seem to shift into High Gear! The controls are you're supposed to be able to shift by pulling the stick down but I could not get that to work either on the analog stick, nor on the d-pad. Definitely something to look into :)

 

Gorf is actually playable! :lol: First time I've ever seen that as well. However yeah, it's way too fast. Gotta love the warp speed moves across the screen, but it's definitely definitely better than it was before (or ever was actually). :) If there was a way to slow it down to be more controllable that'd be all that game would need to call it a day. But as you've mentioned above it's probably better to just play the 8-bit version.

 

Super Breakout is very playable, especially with the rewind! :lol: The sounds of the ball hitting the paddle seem to be missing however. I'm not sure if that's something that can be fixed.. but it's still great we can actually even play this game somewhat decently on an emulator. Ditto for Kaboom. Although Kaboom has that annoying "auto center", it's still seems to work fine enough as is. The speed is good enough for initial play and it seems the analog stick has enough sensitivity to move faster if needed. Asteroids is a lot of fun as well now! Gotta love not rotating like an idiot all the time :)

 

I love the overlay look and think the way it's accessed works great. I guess we don't have the overlays you've created yet as I only saw that generic one so far.. like when I was looking for the OLE buttons in Countermeasure :P

 

Other than that, the take screenshot path looks great. Recording seems to work fine. I tried rewinding & fast forwarding when recording to mess it up but it looks like that doesn't bother it. Speaking of rewind, that is the coolest thing. I love it in Centipede when I get killed by the spider and use rewind to magically re-appear from the explosion :lol:

 

So yeah that's it so far.. I haven't tried out the mega disk and a lot of other stuff I want to try yet.. but I will. Sometimes though I keep getting carried away with playing the games rather than trying to look for any issues & bugs :lol: But yeah that just shows this emu rocks :)

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Wow.. Someone was busy today/tonight!!

Any comments on the analog control in missile command, centipede, pole position, etc? Have not heard much on the miner skin either.
Because I haven't had a chance to try it out yet! :D Yeah I do things in sporadic spurts and as all the life/work stuff gets in the way. It took me a bit of focusing to sort it out as I obviously skipped over the previous release and jumped right into the new one. First things off, the skin you sent wasn't the Miner skin, it was the original Xport one ;)
Not sure how in the world I accomplished that!! |:) New one on it's way. Lemme know if the miner music is too loud. I think the robot demo part is fine, but the rest seems a tad too loud.
2nd. There still isn't an atarixlbox.ini included in the zips, so the rewind function (and maybe some other things?) still need to be activated manually. The whole issue of the .ini files and their associated settings to me seem to be the biggest problem right off the bat. For example playing Missile Command I noticed the overlay would come up when I clicked the Left thumbstick. But after going through the process of deleting older .ini's, the old E:\saves folder, etc. to fix the rewind function, the function then went as expected to the L-trigger + X button. So yeah I think any releases of this have to be pretty solid on the placement of the .ini files, have a complete "default" set of them, and also have some crystal clear instructions on where to delete previous configurations if any.
Yeah that's why we need to get all the controller mappings squared away before sending this out. Fixing stuff like that, as you see is more complicated than it needs to be. That's kinda a hold over from all of x-ports emu's. For example any new INI changes I made have to be manually copied over to the SAVES directory because the emu looks for them there 1st. If I wanna give them to anyone I have to copy them from the SAVES directory. Any changes to the skin are saved to SAVES as well under the name skin_settings.ini, whereas in the skin directory it's called settings.ini... Grrr. Never change skins before copying that file back over if you've made changes.

 

This is the one thing about x-port emu's that drives me crazy. It used to be you had to go into the TDATA and UDATA directories. :lol: At least the 3 custom controller setups are fairly easy to get going.

Ok those being said, I jumped right into 5200 missile command! Wow!! I think it I almost prefer the controls better than the 5200 original! And by that I mean it doesnt snap back into place when you let go of the joystick (or with the original 5200 sticks, when manually centering them). This makes it a little more playable in opinion although some may argue about that. Also Centipede is the same way.. very playable. The speed in both games seems fine. One thing I'm noticing is it seems the analog stick in those games is almost an 8-way movement and not really any points in-between. Is that the case?
Hmmm I suppose it is. Never really thought about that. I do know there are about 8 different speeds. I had to halve that to make it manageable.
I tried out Bounty Bob directly from the rom available here at AA. It didnt seem to recognize the cart and did not find a matching config like it seeems to do with most every other game. But after changing the machine type to 5200 & the cart type to Bounty Bob, I played it for the first time ever on emulator! Seems perfect! :D
meh. The config file name must be more than 42 characters and is not copying over correctly. I thought I limited my upload config thingy to 42 chars...
Pole Position on the other hand seems to have a problem. I can't seem to shift into High Gear! The controls are you're supposed to be able to shift by pulling the stick down but I could not get that to work either on the analog stick, nor on the d-pad. Definitely something to look into :)
Wow I always thought shift was 1 and 7. Looking at the manual 1 & 7 are used when playing with the trackball. I always thought that was odd. I wonder if it thinks it's in trackball mode or something..
Gorf is actually playable! :lol: First time I've ever seen that as well. However yeah, it's way too fast. Gotta love the warp speed moves across the screen, but it's definitely definitely better than it was before (or ever was actually). :) If there was a way to slow it down to be more controllable that'd be all that game would need to call it a day. But as you've mentioned above it's probably better to just play the 8-bit version.

I'm surprised you didn't know about this hack.. Gorf__Digital_Joystick___1983___CBS_.zip I actually think I commented out my Gorf settings because that game is hopeless to fix... :D

Super Breakout is very playable, especially with the rewind! :lol: The sounds of the ball hitting the paddle seem to be missing however. I'm not sure if that's something that can be fixed.. but it's still great we can actually even play this game somewhat decently on an emulator. Ditto for Kaboom. Although Kaboom has that annoying "auto center", it's still seems to work fine enough as is. The speed is good enough for initial play and it seems the analog stick has enough sensitivity to move faster if needed.
Yeah I don't think I have the patience for either without a real paddle. The sound in breakout is a mystery to me but it affects the original atari800 source as well, although awinplus gets it right (it gets just about everything right :lol: ).
Asteroids is a lot of fun as well now! Gotta love not rotating like an idiot all the time :)
Yeah. I hate still having to press both directions, but at least you don't go completely out of control like before. Supposedly there was an addon made for this thing. It'd be nice to know how it communicates with it.
I love the overlay look and think the way it's accessed works great. I guess we don't have the overlays you've created yet as I only saw that generic one so far.. like when I was looking for the OLE buttons in Countermeasure :P
Yeah I'm still working on them (the 4 or 5 I've done so far are not quite lined up properly :lol: ). I really cannot send them until I code the emulator to recognize 'em. Right now it just loads "default.ovl". Do I have players and select backwards on the default overlay? I think I might. :lol:
Other than that, the take screenshot path looks great. Recording seems to work fine. I tried rewinding & fast forwarding when recording to mess it up but it looks like that doesn't bother it. Speaking of rewind, that is the coolest thing. I love it in Centipede when I get killed by the spider and use rewind to magically re-appear from the explosion :lol:
That #*@!! spider, yeah I'm the same way. It's really hard not to hit the rewind combo when playing an HSC title. Star Raiders 2 (XEG) does kick you out when using rewind. A bank switching issue I suspect.
So yeah that's it so far.. I haven't tried out the mega disk and a lot of other stuff I want to try yet.. but I will. Sometimes though I keep getting carried away with playing the games rather than trying to look for any issues & bugs :lol: But yeah that just shows this emu rocks :)

No problem. I have that issue as well. Either that or I get caught up in tweaking something. Sometimes I'm just like the heck with it and get into a game (I've actually overlooked bugs because of that :lol: ). But that's what I have you guys for, right? :P

 

If anyone knows of an alternative disk menu that can handle that disk I PM'ed that is better, just lemme know. The one I incorporated is pretty bare bones. Maybe I'll ask over in the 8-bit forum.

Edited by Shannon

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ok. I got the code in that loads the overlay files if they are available. Basically the overlay file is named with all matching CRC's. Since xbox limits us to 42 characters I just create two files with different CRC values. No biggy. It's not like the overlay file is big or anything.

 

If an overlay file does not exist it uses "default.ovl". So far everything seems pretty good except I need to fix up the black box and the half boxes since they aren't quite right. I have 8 overlays created so far. It now remembers which button you were on last to make things simpler if you have to jump to the overlay multiple times.

 

Only other boring thing I did is if you use the download configuration option, if a file with matching CRC exists it will place your cursor on it. Ain't that sweet? :P

 

Not sure why pole position doesn't shift gears when moving the stick up/down, but I did confirm that issue. :lol: For now just use 1 & 7. I think I mapped them to X&Y myself (on my xbox).

 

Time for a nap. :lol:

Edited by Shannon

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I haven't much time to try out these recent changes (just don't use the old xbox that much anymore) but I'm wondering if any of the new stuff (like analog control fixes) could be incorporated back into Atari800Win? I'd be willing to port them over. I'm not familiar w/ Xport's code but I assume it's based off atari800?

 

~telengard

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It should be possible I just took the Dreamcast specific analog code that is in input.c and had it point to my modules in the atarixlbox code. It really was not that hard. The proper way to do it would probably be to create a #define to go with the dreamcast define to activate that particular section.

 

I used the actual module in the Dreamcast port as a template for what I did.

 

I don't know if I would consider my code really useable since it is Xbox specific, but, from what I can best guess the values returned by the Xbox controllers are similar to what you would get in Direct X.Either way the analog control really enhances the playability of the 5200 titles.

 

As for the game specific changes I made it is a little bit more of a hack(?) I modify specific variables within input.c from the atarixlbox code (joy_5200_min, max). The author of Kat5200 (eegt97) already did alot of stuff in his emulator. I got alot of my ideas from him. The formula's for tweaking the analog values (in missile command, centiped) I came up on my own. I think eegt97 used some user definable deadzones, whereas my code breaks up the stick ranges into "zones" based on an "increment" value that games seem to use and the "range" in which these increments occur.

 

Anyways I don't have a clue what the A800 team would consider within "acceptable" parameters and what is not. Assuming I don't get to burn out, when I'm done I might go thru and try to make the a800 specific modifications more "clean/sane".

 

Just a side note on my "atari joystick.ini", "atari keyboard.ini", and "5200 joystick.ini" files. If changes are made to these and they are copied over to the SAVES\atarixlbox directory. The don't affect all games that use those preset (for example 5200 games). The emu only reads them when you configure a game and from that point on stores the settings in that games individual config file. So basically you have to load a game, force the change by cycling thru the presets in either the "config" menu or the "options" menu.

 

The idea being that the presets act as a quick set-up but then each individual game can have it's own custom keys from then on. Really useful for those games that use odd keys (like Gauntletak).

 

On a side note, regarding the built in menu thingy I just did. I was not expecting anyone to go thru testing all of the games on that disk. I just provided it as an example of what a megadisk is like just so there would not be any confusion. :D

Edited by Shannon

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Well I just got every overlay done except for 2 or 3 plus a couple I need to fix up a little. I got tired of fooking around with the black buttons so I cheated and made the select box smaller. :lol:

 

Plus a few more tweaks to the overlay/keyboard interface. So once I get those squared away I can start fooling around with the actual keyboard picture.

 

Never realized just how many bad/overdumps there exist for 5200 games!

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I just read briefly through this thread and what you've done is pretty amazing, Shannon! I need to pick up an Xbox for this emulator alone! I did write up a news blurb, which I'll post tomorrow (I already posted three news items today--I have a lot of catching up to do!) Here's what I wrote up, which is partially based on a PM NE146 sent me several days ago:

 

--

 

AtariAge user Shannon has been working on an extensive update of the Atarixlbox 8-bit/5200 emulator for the Xbox game console. Some of Shannon's improvements include:

  • Adding the ability to play games that previously did not work (such as Bounty Bob Strikes Back, Missile Command, Pengo, and Asteroids).
  • Dual-analog support that makes games like Space Dungeon and Robotron much more enjoyable.
  • A revised, more friendly front-end making it easier to start and configure 5200 and 8-bit games.
  • Sound has been fixed.
  • Lots of new functionality, such as rewinding a game in play and netplay.
  • Many bugs have been fixed.

There's even an amazing Bounty Bob Strikes Back skin for the emulator, which you can view at YouTube. To learn all the details about what's been changed (the above list only touches the surface!), as well as to discuss Atarixlbox with Shannon and other AtariAge members, please drop by our Modern Gaming forum.

 

--

 

Anyone have an Xbox they'd like to sell me? :D

 

..Al

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Thanks Al. I had a couple things in mind but it's hard par'ing down such a large changelist. Mine would go something like..

 

AtariAge user Shannon has been working on an extensive update of the Atarixlbox 8-bit/5200 emulator for the Xbox game console. Some of Shannon's improvements include:

 

  • Updated core to 203. Fixed pokey sound issues, screenshots, and artifact mode. Zip file support.
  • Many 5200 enhancements including, Analog Support! Dual-stick-analog support that makes games like Space Dungeon and Robotron much more enjoyable. Tweaks and Adjustments to make many 5200 games more playable. Currently working on Overlay support.
  • A revised, more friendly configuration screen making it easier to start and configure 5200 and 8-bit games. Includes Autodetect feature.
  • Many little bugs have been fixed. Playback/record and netplay enhanced to use keyboard and analog input.
  • Plus the latest x-port functionality such as rewinding a game in play, slowdown.

 

There's even an amazing New Miner 2049'er skin for the emulator, which you can view at YouTube. To learn all the details about what's been changed (the above list only touches the surface!), as well as to discuss Atarixlbox with Shannon and other AtariAge members, please drop by our Modern Gaming forum. Feel free to chip in and help with testing as well!

 

-------------

That'd probably be good.

 

Sorry, I aint giving up my xbox.... :D I wouldn't mind soft moddin' one for ya. I think NE146 is pretty good at it as well.

I'm hoping to move alot of this functionality over to a few of the other x-port emu's as well. Just trying to make sure the 'ol 8-bitter gets the aplus treatment.

Edited by Shannon

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If you wait a little I can get a little blurb going for ya. Mine would go something like..

Sure, I haven't posted it up yet. Do you want to further edit it from what you posted?

 

..Al

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If you wait a little I can get a little blurb going for ya. Mine would go something like..

Sure, I haven't posted it up yet. Do you want to further edit it from what you posted?

 

..Al

Whoops. Thought I edited out that little bit. I ended up typing it up right then so that should be fine. :lol:

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Oh.. Thanks NE146 for getting that blur started, missed that part of the msg. I was kinda chewing on one in the back of my mind but had been pre-occupied with the Overlay stuff.

 

I should have all the overlay's done except for Rescue On Fractalus which I'll finish up tonight. The list should be

 

Blueprint

Centipede

Countermeasure

Defender

Frogger

Galaxian

Gorf

Kaboom

Missile Command

Mountain King

Pacman

Qix

River Raid

RS Baseball

RS Football

RS Soccer

Rs Tennis

Space Invaders

Space Shuttle

StarRaiders

Super Breakout

WizardOfWor

 

They are hardly picture perfect but they'll suffice. I'll leave that for some other person to do. I made all of these based on the ones available here at Atari Age. The Activision ones were the hardest, the Atari ones the easiest. If anyone knows of a game that has overlays that I missed let me know. I'll probably need a snapshot or scan of them. I do have a fair number of 5200 games but it is a litle inconvenient to dig them out of the closet without a bunch of junk falling on me. :lol:

 

I'm also going thru the boring task of adding configs for all the gazillion bad dumps and overdumps.. :roll:

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Thanks Al. I had a couple things in mind but it's hard par'ing down such a large changelist. Mine would go something like..

Thanks, I just posted the news. :)

 

..Al

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Oh.. Thanks NE146 for getting that blur started, missed that part of the msg.

 

Oh.. no problem I guess. Although I wasn't consciously writing any "blurb". I was just telling Al to check out this emu :P

Edited by NE146

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Thanks Al!

You're welcome! I look forward to using this on an Xbox once I get my hands on one. :)

 

..Al

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Alrighty then!

 

Finished up the last overlay. They ain't perfect, but too bad!! :P

 

Got it so you can move the overlay around on the diagonal. Simply a case of overzealous trimming of code on my part. :lol:

 

Fixed rewind on XEG (and hopefully all other) bankswitched games. Well at least it works with Mario Bros XEG and Star Raiders 2. :lol: I'll do some more testing later. Odd thing is while researching this little "hiccup" I suspect the a800 sourcecode may not do savestates correctly when it comes to bankswitched carts. I'll have to do a little more testing in order to see if what I think is happening is happening.

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