Re: Re: [stella] StellaX PAL detection

Subject: Re: Re: [stella] StellaX PAL detection
From: Manuel Polik <cybergoth@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 30 Jan 2002 18:29:28 +0100
Hi Eckhard!

> You should get the latest version of from 
> Voch's homepage.

Just did that ~ 2 hours ago. I realize I probably must 
have fetched a very outdated version of the sources.

>Actually I'm not creating an entry for my game, but 
>that thing to DirectX 8 :-) 

>The code for the Windows version, which I think uses 
DirectX is
>inlcuded in the sourcefore repository now, so you might 
want to
>check that out. 

Really? Thanks for that info. I definetly need to check 
that out.

>And even if you don't want to join the Stella
>development team, you still might want to subscribe to 
>mailing lists, since that's probably a better place to 
ask these
>questions than here.

Uhm... yet another Stella mailing list? Where is that?

>Actually Stella and z26 aren't that different when it 
comes to
>detecting games. The only difference is that z26 has 
the checksums
>hardcoded into the executable, while Stella also allows 
>to come from a seperate file. 
>And that file is also kept up to date
>by Voch, so there isn't much of an advantage for z26.

I just don't like separate files. :-)

>The only thing we do is that we try to autodetect the 
TV type.
>But for that we only check the number of scanlines 
during the
>first couple of frames. If the game does a stable line 
>of more than 285 lines or so, we assume that the game 
is meant
>to be PAL. But something like that could probably be 
added to
>Stella too quite easyly.

That's a good idea.

Say: Why don't you detect paddles that way too? Apart 
from that one Omega Booster thing game, what would 
prevent a proper paddle auto-detection?

>BTW: Could you imagine something like a class, that 
>load and identify a BIN and holding all it's 
information. That
>class could be the same in StellaX and Z26.

>z26 is compiled with MASM and Turbo C, so C++ classes 
>fit in. But we already have a function that does most 
of the
>identification with the checksums. It's in carts.c and 
the CRC
>tables are in ct.c.

I've seen that, but in its current form it's not usable 
for anything other than Z26.

>And what about handling SC games with that object?

>What about it? ;-)

Since the functionality of the class I designed would 
load a binary, I wasn't too sure what would happen with 
multiloads. I've seen functions for that near the ones 
that identify the BINs. So I don't know if something 
like getNextBlock() was necessary for SC-Games. Or a 
pointer to the current page/offset or something.

>Besides it'd be good for my emulator, because I never 
again have
>to care about uptodating the identification  :-)
>Oh come on, teasing us like that isn't fair. Now you 
>to tell us why you want to modify the emulator and 
>going to be so special about your program. ;-)

Well... I have some very ambitiuos things in mind and 
I'm not really sure were it'll lead me in the end, if 
anywhere. My purposes are somewhat special, too.

1. One general idea is to provide a pure/uptodate 
Windows emulator, that combines the best of both worlds.
My idea was to re-port Stella to DirectDraw/Sound/Input 
and to add things from Z26 into it, where Stella just 
isn't accurate enough. 
The reason why I choose to start with Stella is simple.
One emulator is C++, one is Delphi and one is ASM :-)

2. That emulator is for cartridge developers. Therefore 
it must not support SC Pitfall 2 and 20 different BS 
schemes. It may, but it needs not. Generally I'm gonna 
throw out all stuff that's making the thing unecessary 
bloated like supporting single games like Pitfall 2 or 
extra RAM or Mindlink controlers, or...stuff like 

3. It must be small and transportable on a single disk, 
like Z26.

4. I'd like to integrate a debugger, DASM, DiStella as 
well as an editor for text and probably editors/imports 
for graphics/sounds.

5. I'd like to have a certain set of games built-in. 
(Guess which... :-))

So, that are my plans. Most of them might conflict with 
the plans of other emulator developers whith the classic 
"We emulate everything" approach, so I decided to just 
work on it myself. Besides, it's good for me to learn 
DirectX, how an emulator works, and, and, and...

Most likely none of the above will ever get finished, 
it's just a fun-project I'm working on from time to 

If there's really the sources of WinStellaX.1.1.3a 
somewhere on Sourgeforge, I'll probably throw all away I 
did so far and start all over again, with that version.
(Hell, I was asking for exactly these sources _before_ I 
started anything...)


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