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 Post subject: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:05 am 


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Disclaimer: I'm a noob who just got into shmups a couple weeks ago.

I've heard a lot about a game called "Radiant Silvergun", but I'm having immense trouble trying to play it. AFAIK, there was the original arcade version and later a Sega Saturn port. The arcade version runs like ass under every MAME setup I've ever tried and the Saturn port is a lost cause because I can't find any Saturn emulator that works- they all either crash on boot or boot to a black screen and 100% cpu usage.

Is it possible to play this game without dumping money into original arcade/Saturn hardware?


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:05 am 


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komatik wrote:
Disclaimer: I'm a noob who just got into shmups a couple weeks ago.

I've heard a lot about a game called "Radiant Silvergun", but I'm having immense trouble trying to play it. AFAIK, there was the original arcade version and later a Sega Saturn port. The arcade version runs like ass under every MAME setup I've ever tried and the Saturn port is a lost cause because I can't find any Saturn emulator that works- they all either crash on boot or boot to a black screen and 100% cpu usage.

Is it possible to play this game without dumping money into original arcade/Saturn hardware?

There's a few ways to emulate the game if you're so inclined.
* MAME 0.128 runs the ST-V version of the game, if with a fair few issues. It's a lot faster than later versions of MAME for it, and you can at least run the game from start to finish. I cannot vouch for its accuracy one bit, but it's fast enough to be vaguely playable on a 2004-era laptop with frameskip enabled, and it runs fairly well on anything recent.
This is probably the least recommended way to play, but I know it works. There's a bunch of input delay.

* SSF [SSF_012_beta_R4] should work on any remotely modern machine [we're talking 2009-era Core 2 Duo machine here, and there's basically zero issue on my current laptop], but you'll need a CD mounting program like VirtualCloneDrive or WinCDEmu with the disc image mounted or a real CD drive with the game [real, burned, whatever] in the tray. You should also probably set the disc image to be read only too.
SSF won't even bother to open if it doesn't detect a CD drive, whether real or emulated.
You'll also need to go to Option->EZ Setting->Highest Compatibility, since the emulator starts up with less than perfect compatibility settings.
Make sure you've got the BIOS file and set the Area Code to Japan in Option->Peripheral. SSF can boot games without the BIOS, but there's a good chance the game will crash if it even starts.
This is a nice, easy way to play the game. IIRC, SSF also has some input delay, however.

* Mednafen's Saturn emulation should also work on a fairly recent machine, but I haven't actually tried it myself, and it's not exactly the simplest to set up. I've heard good things about it, and apparently it should have less input delay than the other two options.

There's also the XBLA release of the game if you've got a 360, which AFAIK changes a handful of things and adds some features. I know absolutely fuck-all about it otherwise. It's $15, and there's a demo available.
If you're ever willing to get a Saturn [they're like $60 or so, and I love my Saturn], PseudoSaturn Kai works plenty well if you don't feel like dropping $150+ on a bare disc, no case/manual copy of the game. Bit of a pain to install PSK [you need to do a swap trick to boot the installer], but it's simple enough.

RSG is cool, but I'd try some other games first.
Namely, getting anywhere in RSG flat out demands being able to score, or else you just don't have the firepower to get anywhere, although Saturn mode eases the requirement by saving your weapon levels.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:22 am 


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null1024 wrote:
There's a few ways to emulate the game if you're so inclined.
* MAME 0.128 runs the ST-V version of the game, if with a fair few issues. It's a lot faster than later versions of MAME for it, and you can at least run the game from start to finish. I cannot vouch for its accuracy one bit, but it's fast enough to be vaguely playable on a 2004-era laptop with frameskip enabled, and it runs fairly well on anything recent.
This is probably the least recommended way to play, but I know it works. There's a bunch of input delay.


I'd like to add that there have since been improvements to MAME's Saturn driver that make emulation much more accurate, though it is quite resource-intensive, as MAME is wont to be.

null1024 wrote:
* SSF [SSF_012_beta_R4] should work on any remotely modern machine [we're talking 2009-era Core 2 Duo machine here, and there's basically zero issue on my current laptop], but you'll need a CD mounting program like VirtualCloneDrive or WinCDEmu with the disc image mounted or a real CD drive with the game [real, burned, whatever] in the tray. You should also probably set the disc image to be read only too.
SSF won't even bother to open if it doesn't detect a CD drive, whether real or emulated.
You'll also need to go to Option->EZ Setting->Highest Compatibility, since the emulator starts up with less than perfect compatibility settings.
Make sure you've got the BIOS file and set the Area Code to Japan in Option->Peripheral. SSF can boot games without the BIOS, but there's a good chance the game will crash if it even starts.
This is a nice, easy way to play the game. IIRC, SSF also has some input delay, however.


If I recall correctly, setting SSF to "Highest Compatibility" also causes it to eat up a lot more processing power. There's no guarantee it'll run at full speed at that setting if performance is your concern.

null1024 wrote:
* Mednafen's Saturn emulation should also work on a fairly recent machine, but I haven't actually tried it myself, and it's not exactly the simplest to set up. I've heard good things about it, and apparently it should have less input delay than the other two options.


Setup is pretty easy once you realize that Mednafen supports drag-and drop. The hardest part of the whole process is acquiring proper dumps of the BIOS and disc images, something the developers shouldn't be helping you with anyway. Once you have those, it's just a matter of dragging the .cue file over the executable and pressing Alt + Shift + 1 to configure your controller. Most of the documentation you need is on their site, too. And yes, Mednafen's mid-frame synchronization option is supposed to give it an edge over its competitors latency-wise (yes, even over RetroArch), although I admittedly haven't tried it.

null1024 wrote:
getting anywhere in RSG flat out demands being able to score, or else you just don't have the firepower to get anywhere


Now he tells me!

null1024 wrote:
RSG is cool, but I'd try some other games first.


A few minutes of looking around here should clue you in on the fact that the Saturn is a gold mine for shooters! Shienryu in particular shares some developers with Daioh and wears its lineage on its sleeve.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:11 pm 


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Seconding SSF, that thing works like a charm and the lag isn't a problem if you don't vsync it.

There's also the xbox360 emulation, but i'm not sure if it's 100% glitchless right now.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:57 pm 


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If you have a decent pc and grafx card I would highly recommend Retroarch running Saturn Mednafen. It is resource intensive but the performance is the best I have come across next to SSF with the least amount of lag. Personally I would get the xbla version for convenience as it runs on the 360 and the xbone.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 5:44 pm 


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WelshMegalodon wrote:
If I recall correctly, setting SSF to "Highest Compatibility" also causes it to eat up a lot more processing power. There's no guarantee it'll run at full speed at that setting if performance is your concern.

Remember that bit about the 2009 Core 2 Duo machine [it's like 10 years old at this point]? Pretty much the only thing that slows down on it at Highest are the fighting games that run at 480i.
SSF is plenty fast, and my i5 laptop from five years ago does a-okay on it too.
If it's still running slow for whatever reason, bring it down one notch from there and it should probably work.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:07 pm 


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Worth noting the XBLA/X360 port has significant input delay, you can probably get less lag on a saturn emulator. Xbla also sort of hostile for learning the game since chaining stage 5A gets multiple times harder because of no slowdown. Already arguably hardest part of the game with slowdown.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:48 am 


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null1024 wrote:
MAME 0.128

I had to dig out my best Indiana Jones costume for this. Took me half an hour to figure out how to get such an old version running. Verdict: basically the same as other MAMEs, maybe slightly better but still not really playable. Oh well.

null1024 wrote:
SSF

Unfortunately this is Windows only and I don't have a Windows box handy. I'll have to build one maybe, I think I have an old Win7 install DVD around here somewhere.

lawnspic wrote:
Retroarch running Saturn Mednafen.

This is one of the ones I tried before but it just crashes. Good to know that it's at least supposed to be working, I'll have to figure out what's going on with my setup that it doesn't like.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:52 am 


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WelshMegalodon wrote:
I'd like to add that there have since been improvements to MAME's Saturn driver that make emulation much more accurate, though it is quite resource-intensive, as MAME is wont to be.

Oh yeah, I always forget that MAME is trying to be a home console emulator now too. It's almost certainly a more efficient use of time trying to get a real Saturn emulator working first though.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:32 am 



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In general, as a first introduction, I think you're going to find Ikaruga (spiritual successor to RS) more accessible (steam/ps4/xbla/gamecube/dreamcast, or naomi + any related emulation). It's a tired recommendation, but there's more than a few good reasons why this game still gets to be the contemporary go to example of the genre for many.

Get into that and you'll probably find it easier to get into RS... And maybe love it more.

For my 2 cents - RS is perfectly serviceable on 360+xbox one, lag seemed the same as emulation imho. In any case, well worth the asking cost and a really good play, even if not the best version. And again, the graphics options are an easy way to help tune the look of the game if that's something of a hurdle to someone coming to this game/genre/era fresh from the contemporary scene (not saying this is you per se, but could be something to bear in mind - particularly if you were to later recommend the game to another person).

RS on stv/titan (arcade) performance wise is identical to saturn - exact same hardware barring the cart vs cd drive. (there are arcade specific game mode vs saturn game modes).

Enjoy!

...Oh and if you don't like either of these games, there's are other plenty of other types of shmups :)


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:39 pm 


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komatik wrote:
null1024 wrote:
SSF

Unfortunately this is Windows only and I don't have a Windows box handy. I'll have to build one maybe, I think I have an old Win7 install DVD around here somewhere.

oof

What machines do you have? Specs, etc?
I've had extremely good success using GCDEmu to mount CDs and Wine to run SSF on that same 2009 Core 2 Duo machine I mentioned above. Was running Xubuntu.
IIRC, you might need to install some DirectX stuff with Winetricks, it's been years since I've set it up, so I can't remember.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:45 pm 


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gray117 wrote:
In general, as a first introduction, I think you're going to find Ikaruga (spiritual successor to RS) more accessible

Hmm ok I'll have to look into that. Definitely much wider platform availability if nothing else. The white/black thing rings a bell, I remember people talking about that.

null1024 wrote:
What machines do you have?
I've had extremely good success using GCDEmu to mount CDs and Wine to run SSF

Mostly Macs and Linux of various flavors. I'm not really a "gamer" in any realistic sense- 99% of what I play is through RetroArch so I rarely need a physical Windows machine and just use a VM when required.

Does Wine actually work now for games? Last time I tried it (which was admittedly many years ago) it had all sorts of wacky quirks and issues with anything realtime 3D, like vsync was impossible, it'd report I was playing at 400 fps when it was clearly more like 40, and there were lots of weird visual artifacts and glitches, etc. Games were certainly functional but the experience was less than enjoyable.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:54 pm 


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Looks like everyone has already said, but I'll add my two cents.

I've used SSF to play RSG before. It was ok from what I recall, but I ended up with an STV arcade board. I didn't do much with SSF once I had the board. I like RSG a lot and wish it was also on steam with ikaruga.

As some have said RSG is not very easy unless you learn to score. The youtube channel ben shinobi has some really good runs if you want to see some of the extreme scoring you can do. I found using his stage routes and then modifying the boss fights a bit worked for me.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:29 pm 


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komatik wrote:
Oh yeah, I always forget that MAME is trying to be a home console emulator now too. It's almost certainly a more efficient use of time trying to get a real Saturn emulator working first though.


But... MAME is a real Saturn emulator. Certainly more than Retroarch, which is simply a frontend for other emulators. And getting it running shouldn't be difficult for anyone that uses Linux and can stand using Retroarch's headache-inducing interface for more than fifteen minutes.

If you don't already know about it, the -listcrc command is your friend. After that it's just a matter of having ROM images that match the version of MAME you're using - those are very easily found under a certain dome of pleasure.

Of course, if the processing power for accurate Saturn emulation isn't there, it isn't there.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:01 am 


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WelshMegalodon wrote:
But... MAME is a real Saturn emulator.

I mean I guess it depends a lot on what your definition of 'real' is in this context. Maybe 'pragmatic' would have been a better word.

MAME is not now nor has it ever been concerned with letting people play old games, it has this weird "pretty little boxes" "purity" concept of basically trying to describe older systems like they're some kind of beautiful mathematical equation. Actually being able to play games is merely an incidental side effect. MAME is more than happy to introduce changes that completely break playability or seriously degrade performance.

While lots of other people who make emulators have their heads up their ass about many things, they at least acknowledge that nobody gives a shit about the actual hardware and are really only interested in playing the games themselves, even if doing so requires using software with some degree of hackyness in it. I consider these to be more "real" emulators than MAME because they're at least fit for an intended purpose instead of what basically amounts to intellectual masturbation. Don't get me wrong- MAME is impressive for what it is, but when it comes to "how do I play X" it's usually my last choice if I have one.

WelshMegalodon wrote:
Retroarch, which is simply a frontend for other emulators.

Yeah I'm aware of that. When I write "a real Saturn emulator" I'm referring to a libretro core or SSF or whatever.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 6:50 am 


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komatik wrote:
MAME is not now nor has it ever been concerned with letting people play old games, it has this weird "pretty little boxes" "purity" concept of basically trying to describe older systems like they're some kind of beautiful mathematical equation. Actually being able to play games is merely an incidental side effect. MAME is more than happy to introduce changes that completely break playability or seriously degrade performance.


Don't the two go hand in hand, though? It's pretty much the only thing you ever hear coming out of Haze's mouth these days, after all. Yes, being able to run Chrono Trigger on your ancient laptop from 1997 is fun, but not when it sounds like this. Can we all agree that playing Toaplan games without sound for the better part of a decade also sucked?

Even if they don't always live up to their philosophy in practice, shouldn't MAME's approach, an accuracy-focused approach, be the ideal in the first place? For most systems older than the GameCube the most accurate emulator also tends to be one most suitable for playing anyway, since being accurate allows for both.

komatik wrote:
While lots of other people who make emulators have their heads up their ass about many things, they at least acknowledge that nobody gives a shit about the actual hardware and are really only interested in playing the games themselves, even if doing so requires using software with some degree of hackyness in it. I consider these to be more "real" emulators than MAME because they're at least fit for an intended purpose instead of what basically amounts to intellectual masturbation. Don't get me wrong- MAME is impressive for what it is, but when it comes to "how do I play X" it's usually my last choice if I have one.


The MAME devs have expressed plenty of interest in more techniques that improve performance and even usability. GPU acceleration, for example, or the dynarec for SH3-based hardware that Haze wrote last year. And just last week they discussed the possibility of providing machines with operating systems pre-installed so DOS gamers would have a reason to move on from DOSBox (as if the slick UI PCem has had for a while now isn't reason enough). It makes sense when you consider that accessibility would not only facilitate the testing process (which would eventually lead to more accurate emulation) but also make it more attractive to those wanting to use it in a quasi-commercial setting (one of the reasons for the license change a few years back - see here). Etc., etc.

I'll leave this here for you, too, in case you haven't already seen it. (On that note, it's 2019 and higan is still the only emulator to fully replicate all the features of the Super Game Boy. No custom palettes for you!)

EDIT:
komatik wrote:
Does Wine actually work now for games? Last time I tried it (which was admittedly many years ago) it had all sorts of wacky quirks and issues with anything realtime 3D, like vsync was impossible, it'd report I was playing at 400 fps when it was clearly more like 40, and there were lots of weird visual artifacts and glitches, etc. Games were certainly functional but the experience was less than enjoyable.

You may find this site helpful.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 9:38 am 


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Yay! another opportnity for one of my TL;DR MAME rants! :D :P

Of course up-to-date MAME is the best choice for accuracy since it's always the one with the most advancement in emulation proper progress.
It's just that baseline MAME is indeed not a gaming-focused project (which is of course odd and unnatural considering the material it's about), when they talk about accuracy they're thinking of the code level of reproducing how it really was hardware/game-wise for preservation, which doesn't mean accurate behaviour and playability.
Though they definitely don't give up on the latter, they'll only consider things like emulating slowdowns and input delay reduction etc if done with the best fidelity (e.g there's anough choice for minimizing input delay but they'll only accept beam racing a.k.a frame_slice, though making it work apparently means a massive code rewrite enterprise, kind of like emulating wait states would, so it's again something for the far future, and again too far for most users who have already been patient almost two decades)

The problem is time, mamedev don't consider all this material like most of the users demographics do, they don't see and think with gamer's eyes and logic, they're developers, engineers, übergeeks, and they think of preserving devices, code, they can only think with their particular logic in rather extreme fashion, to them anything that deviates is perversion, danger, even reasonable even temporary compromises are unacceptable, so if something takes several decades to be fixed or completed, they don't mind. They probably see themselves as Hari Seldon's Foundation but for emulation.
Spartan developer's logic should be the best, yeah, but pushed to the extreme such overconfidence can also be the doom of any project.
And that's their fatal mistake imho, interest/populatity-wise no demographics but the older and niche-est ones who can more or less agree with that logic and agree to their policies will continue to follow and support them, nobody else but other pure geeks like them will continue to care and support, all the masses of normal users will forget about the genuine MAME project completely only going for the more or less crappy alternatives, not caring about the issues with those because they don't even realize there are to begin (esp the younger the less aware and least likely to question). This scenario basically means failure of the plan. Not considering the nature of the material they work on and what it means for the demographics of users is the Achille's talon of MAME project, they mistook games for paintings, sculptures or books, whatever fit for museums and archiving, which video games definitely are NOT.
Haze is probably the most vocal/known supporter of that mentality, MAME can only be so valuable because of super skilled devs like him, but it's also that extreme tunnel-vison like his that makes them ignorant of the broader picture and will ultimately be the cause of the project's decline into oblivion, utterly buried under the popularity of RetroArch and the likes, retropie/recalbox, Arcade 1-up etc.

For now though as madly tunnel-visioned as it is, a positionment like Haze and Co.'s is still of course much more sane than the opposite views. It's a situation of two deaf-blind prejudice-packing extremes, but still with one side being more obviously right at least on the pure technical level: mamedev do real work, they make actual emulation advance, they always have (though lots of user feel annnoyed or betrayed that since about 2015 they've been dedicating more strenght to emulating calculators and microwaves or consoles than arcades where there's still obviously a ton of work to do)
I know most people don't realize what they're missing when using old MAME builds, the multitude of improvements mamedev made to the games emulation over the years are real, having no consideration for that condemns emulation progress to stop on the not-so-long term.
RetroArch fills some of the gaping holes that mamedev have very erronously never considered important/priorities, but it does so the wrong way, using obsolete builds, allowing lag reduction lower than real, etc, in the end they hurt most of the retro emulation genuine efforts, much more so than mamedev's exaggerated radicalism and looking down on users.

GroovyMAME is different in that it's basically MAME done right or at least better than baseline, the reasonable and working compromise you could place between baseline MAME's stiff tunnel-vision, and RetroArch's toxic retardation. It's fixing several things in terms of video sync and input delay, plus allowing a few tweaks/hacks;
Basic sync to monitor and triblebuffer produce significantly less delay than baseline's, syncrefresh - which is broken in baseline - is fixed and much improved along with several modes compatibility fixes up to 4K, which makes it the only MAME useable for playing games at their correct speed and with reduced delay on pretty much any non-limited sync display, whether CRT or LCD/flat panel.
It also includes saving cheat sliders settings now, which makes it the only build able to apply and keep CPU OC and blitter speed fixes (cps1/2, neogeo, cave and many games that work right or at least better only with those little tweaks), savestates have also been fixed, someone makes a Wolf derivative for replays and recording, and there's an ARCADE32/64 variant too for those who dig drivers hacks.
Problem is stupid people have self-convinced themselves and sheep opinion that it's too complicated to use and understand, and bullshited it a lot in communities, not even caring to try and learn nor paying attention to development that has been really fast, attending to most of the issues/critics, and is still very active.
Though they're right to say it's really austere (a good part of that is due to MAME itself) and documentation is rather dispersed, sometimes outdated, and hard to read for most newcomers who don't really understand how the basics of MAME work to begin (which is again inherited from baseline MAME's long not giving much fucks about being accessible and understandable enough to the commonfolks, there are glaring sticking issues users regularly complain about and which of course the devs deny calling users lazy and evil)
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 10:10 pm 


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On a Mac, OpenEmu uses a Mednafen core to emulate Saturn games. Booting RS in it the game appears to run fine. I have not sat down to the daunting task of playing through RS this way. All the time and effort I've spent building weapon levels and working through to completion were done on a real Saturn. But what I've seen looks fine doing it this way and input lag from a PS4 HRAP looks fairly minimal.

The iMac I use is a late 2014 model but kitted out with max CPU, graphics memory, etc. So depending on what you have, YMMV.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:58 pm 


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Xyga wrote:
Of course up-to-date MAME is the best choice for accuracy since it's always the one with the most advancement in emulation proper progress.

This is rarely true beyond things without standalone emulators. None of the console-based emulation holds up at all (besides NeoGeo Pocket), so why would Saturn? I believe Medanfen is the state of the art for Saturn currently.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 4:54 am 


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WelshMegalodon wrote:
Don't the two go hand in hand, though? It's pretty much the only thing you ever hear coming out of Haze's mouth these days, after all. Yes, being able to run Chrono Trigger on your ancient laptop from 1997 is fun, but not when it sounds like this. Can we all agree that playing Toaplan games without sound for the better part of a decade also sucked?

You're totally missing my point here. I (along with like probably 99% of retro gamers) only really care about playing a game the same way it played originally. Obviously if an emulator has broken video or sound or whatever then it's crap and I'll go with some other emulator that works. But the thing is, I don't really care why it works, just that it does. I don't really give a shit if it's "correctly" emulating some obscure interference pattern between two obscure chips on a circuit board, I care that the resulting colored dots on my screen and vibrations from my speaker cones are the same as what the original hardware would have done (or better). How the emulator in question makes that happen under the hood is completely unimportant to me. In other words I'm exclusively concerned with the end result, not the process. Yes in theory an accuracy-focused approach would be better, but perfect is the enemy of good. I want to play these games NOW, not "eventually". MAME has been in development for OVER TWENTY YEARS and half the games still aren't functional on even the most basic level.

WelshMegalodon wrote:
You may find this site helpful.

Eh, thanks but not really. Like anyone WINE wants to make themselves look good so they tend to not critic themselves too much about details. I used a bunch of those types of sites last time and discovered that their ratings were rather generous.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 4:57 am 


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kog3100_edw wrote:
On a Mac, OpenEmu uses a Mednafen

Oh right, thanks for reminding me about OpenEmu. I looked into that a while back but IIRC it had some really weird restrictions and I ended up going with RetroArch instead. Maybe it's different now, I'll check it out again.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:00 am 


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Xyga wrote:
but it does so the wrong way, using obsolete builds, allowing lag reduction lower than real,

RetroArch's toxic retardation

lolwut


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:33 am 


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komatik wrote:
You're totally missing my point here. I (along with like probably 99% of retro gamers) only really care about playing a game the same way it played originally.


I'd encourage you to take another look at the article by byuu that I linked to near the end of my previous post. Ultimately all inaccurate emulation of the kind that you seem to worship does is make a relatively small set of games playable while leaving everything else broken to some degree. N64 emulation is probably the poster child for this phenomenon, but SNES was also pretty bad (so bad, in fact, that it encouraged the madman to create the first console emulator to sport 100% known compatibility with all commercially released games, apparently).

komatik wrote:
I want to play these games NOW, not "eventually".


Fire up ePSXe. Do you get the fade-in effect when you enter a random battle in FFVII? No? Guess what, the devs don't give a fuck because upscaling. They will never fix it.

If I remember correctly, Dolphin made substantial leaps in progress and fixed many more games when they started making a real effort to replicate the behavior of the hardware, too.

https://www.reddit.com/r/emulation/comm ... ounds_bad/
https://www.reddit.com/r/emulation/comm ... n/cus0z1m/
https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2011/08/ ... -emulator/
https://www.reddit.com/r/emulation/comm ... _emulator/
https://www.reddit.com/r/emulation/comm ... a/c35i817/

There's been more than enough evidence to show that catering only to users that share your views is detrimental to the scene as a whole. It's just a matter of directing people to it.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:33 am 


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trap15 wrote:
Xyga wrote:
Of course up-to-date MAME is the best choice for accuracy since it's always the one with the most advancement in emulation proper progress.

This is rarely true beyond things without standalone emulators. None of the console-based emulation holds up at all (besides NeoGeo Pocket), so why would Saturn? I believe Medanfen is the state of the art for Saturn currently.

Of course, my rant was essentially an opportunist use of OP's thread, also we've discussed broader arcades emulation in his previous thread (Daioh, emus/options etc).
Where there's standalone specialized emus available, or 'pc' versions whatever, it's better to use those, not arguing, but for everything else arcades in general - merge with MESS notwhistanding - it's always the latest MAME that's the most advanced, and most of the games we play are there.

komatik wrote:
lolwut

It's just reality, the renamed MAME builds/cores available in RA are very outdated, lacking years worth of fixes and improvements that make the games play closer and closer to the real thing. Hence the 'retarded', because technically the MAME experience in RA is retarded.
Better stick to FBA core although of course that one supports less games overall.

As for the lag, it seems the awareness of the topic is lacking within increasingly large demographics of users, so it's practically a lost cause but heh.
The run-ahead feature is great to reduce input delay, but it also has the power to reduce it to levels actually lower than the real hardwares and games.
Besides the obvious issue in terms of accuracy, this means people can play with an advantage over those who do in normal conditions, add to this it's undetectable on stream/replays videos, and it's basically stealthy cheating.
You said it yourself "Getting a core with runahead working at least doubled my skill level", of course unwanted additional lag on top of the game's means a handicap, for which case run-ahead is a godsend, but in several cases when maxing out run-ahead you will do better than simply remove that handicap, making the game actually more responsive than even the arcade original was.
Sure it's up to people to judge if it's important or not that replays and high scores are produced in fair conditions.
Opinion is split between those who care bout accurate emulation and fair play, and those who don't.
Sure, MAMEdev didn't make their emulator any attractive nor pleasant nor practical for playing, I agree, but RA goes too far in the opposite direction, not caring about actual emulation progress by inciting people to use outdated builds, and not caring about accuracy and fairness by inciting them to mindlessly use over-the-top input lag reduction where possible.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 9:42 am 


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WelshMegalodon wrote:
I'd encourage you to take another look at the article by byuu that I linked to near the end of my previous post. Ultimately all inaccurate emulation of the kind that you seem to worship

You're STILL totally missing my point. I'm well aware of byuu's work on bsnes/higen as well as the issues with it (ie; the libretro mercury fork etc), I've been following that for quite a while. I'm not "worshiping" inaccurate emulation and never have. I'm merely saying that:

1) At the end of the day, no amount of accuracy in your emulator matters if the thing can't actually play stuff. I have no interest in people waxing philosophical about code purity if the result is barely functional. Accuracy is obviously strongly preferred, but if the thing isn't usable then it's a non-starter.

2) I have no loyalties and will use the emulator that provides the best overall experience and end result. I don't care how it achieves this, just that it does. If another better emulator comes along I will happily jump ship.

WelshMegalodon wrote:
Fire up ePSXe. Do you get the fade-in effect when you enter a random battle in FFVII? No? Guess what, the devs don't give a fuck because upscaling. They will never fix it.

Well then the emulator is bad and I would attempt to find a better one. If there is no better one and the alternatives have accurate graphics effect but run at half speed or something, then I would make a decision on which is more important to me and pick the emulator which provides that.

WelshMegalodon wrote:
There's been more than enough evidence to show that catering only to users that share your views

You don't understand what my views even are. You keep arguing over a point that I'm not making.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:12 am 


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Xyga wrote:
It's just reality, the renamed MAME builds/cores available in RA are very outdated, lacking years worth of fixes and improvements that make the games play closer and closer to the real thing. Hence the 'retarded', because technically the MAME experience in RA is retarded.

You.... it ........ what?

RetroArch is a frontend shell and backend framework that provides a unified set of features common to all emulators so that they don't have to keep reinventing the wheel. The emulation heavy lifting is done by plug-in cores which come from the Libretro project. The MAME cores provided by Libretro are old because none of the people working in the project seem to have much interest in keeping them up to date. But that's not RetroArch's fault or responsibility to fix, and AFAIK neither is it due to any decisions on their part.

Xyga wrote:
The run-ahead feature is great to reduce input delay, but it also has the power to reduce it to levels actually lower than the real hardwares and games.

There is no legitimate reason that reducing input delay is ever a bad thing. Controls should respond when you press the button, not sometime later when they feel like it. You're using the same "it's different therefore it's bad" arguments as people claiming vacuum tubes are better than transistors. It's not cheating when everyone knows about it and the feature is open to anyone who flips the checkbox to turn it on.

Xyga wrote:
You said it yourself "Getting a core with runahead working at least doubled my skill level"

Yes, and if you'd read the beginning of that thread you'd see that my problem was that the game was extremely difficult to play because I was experiencing a full 5 frames of lag, well in excess of what other threads said I should be seeing, and I was trying to figure out how to fix that.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:09 am 


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komatik wrote:
The MAME cores provided by Libretro are old because none of the people working in the project seem to have much interest in keeping them up to date. But that's not RetroArch's fault or responsibility to fix, and AFAIK neither is it due to any decisions on their part.

I'll leave the politics/legality part of this to the devs themselves - both sides concerned - but absorbing emulators and offering them as 'cores' is not without issues, they're rubbed mamedev's policies the wrong way more than once, which is why there's feud.
The old MAME versions cores proposed - some of them with hacks to try and make up for the outdated drivers issues - are one of the main problems.
IMHO RA should have stayed a frontend, or at least respect the legit emu developers do's and dont's, maybe this way they would have had a better relationship with mamedev that would have been beneficail to all.

Xyga wrote:
There is no legitimate reason that reducing input delay is ever a bad thing. Controls should respond when you press the button, not sometime later when they feel like it. You're using the same "it's different therefore it's bad" arguments as people claiming vacuum tubes are better than transistors. It's not cheating when everyone knows about it and the feature is open to anyone who flips the checkbox to turn it on.

Yes there it is. That formulation. You see that's the problem, partisans of run-ahead say that because of course reducing input lag is desirable, who would argue against the statement? but they always either ignore or deliberately stay silent over the fact that there's more than one type of lag involved in the total delay chain, there's some due to video sync, to inputs software, to controllers hardware/drivers, OS, display if it's laggy...but the original games running on their hardware produced more or less input delay of their own too, and eliminating that particular delay is wrong, it's incaccurate and effectively giving the player an abnormal advantage over the others who don't or can't benefit from the same. And it also doesn't appear on streams/replays, in both cases it's unfair.
Eliminating all the lag but that of the original game's is how it's done right, but run-ahead breaks this rule in many cases if the user just always maxes out the setting.

Quote:
Yes, and if you'd read the beginning of that thread you'd see that my problem was that the game was extremely difficult to play because I was experiencing a full 5 frames of lag, well in excess of what other threads said I should be seeing, and I was trying to figure out how to fix that.

Of course it was, additional lag over the game's orignal in most cases makes them harder to play, it's a handicap, on average in MAME 'hands-off' (all sync features off and therefore w/ tearing) the games run at about 2 frames, in which case if you are using vsync which produces about 3 frames on default with d3d/ogl, you must then use run-ahead to cut 3 frames off the total 5.
Now think about the case of all those games that originally lag 2 frames then, and those nearly nothing (that respond on the next frame), and then the other situation where people turn sync off and max out run-ahead at the same time. -> in both cases that means playing a lot of games with actually better response, less delay, sometimes much less so, than these games are supposed to.

Nobody can honestly deny that, it's a fact, now whether users care that what they play is running accurate or not is their problem, my question would rather be 'do they understand what that means and what they're doing?'
For instance I quote you there;
Quote:
I (along with like probably 99% of retro gamers) only really care about playing a game the same way it played originally.

I'm only saying you can have both functional and accurate, it's a matter of getting what the emulators and the settings/features actually bring or don't.
Otherwise I agree with you about MAME, they should have made compromises for playability (which GroovyMAME did but its not for Macs) because in many aspects I don't see any issues in regards to accuracy. For too long they've ignored, or at least treated as unimportant, the fundamental reality that for people games are meant for playing period.
RetroArch brought what players asked for, but often the wrong way or crossing the line of acceptable compromises, which is detrimental to the emulation scene in the end, that's my point.
Sadly I don't see either mamedev nor retroarch become any wiser in the future, they'll keep camping their respective extreme positions.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 12:41 pm 


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komatik wrote:
The MAME cores provided by Libretro are old because none of the people working in the project seem to have much interest in keeping them up to date. But that's not RetroArch's fault or responsibility to fix, and AFAIK neither is it due to any decisions on their part.


The MAME core is up to date in Retroarch, the numbered versions are only there to serve people with less capable hardware.


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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:27 pm 


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komatik wrote:
You don't understand what my views even are. You keep arguing over a point that I'm not making.


I see that you prefer whichever emulator proves to be the most functional, performant, and accurate while preferring to avoid thinking about whatever is going on under the hood. You'l have to excuse me if I ended up countering a related, but not identical, stance since it isn't always clear where one ends and the other begins.

komatik wrote:
The MAME cores provided by Libretro are old because none of the people working in the project seem to have much interest in keeping them up to date. But that's not RetroArch's fault or responsibility to fix, and AFAIK neither is it due to any decisions on their part.


As Xyga has said, the libretro team has been guilty of making all sorts of changes to the libretro versions of MAME that, if nothing else, don't agree with the ideals of the MAME project at all. Being that they've pretty much done the exact same thing with Mednafen and higan (you yourself said you were aware of the whole situation with bsnes-mercury), it's very much a deliberate decision on their part.

Case in point: Using a release of MAME from 15 years ago as the base for a redundant libretro core despite said release basically being disowned by the MAME team.

OmegaFlareX wrote:
MAME in RetroArch is pretty fucked up, because arcade games use weird-ass refresh rates. I had to turn off all my usual sync options and some other things, but the sound is still output at 60hz no matter what I do. Everything's all high-pitched and wrong. It's useless until they fix that.
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 Post subject: Re: Radiant Silvergun emulation?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 7:37 pm 


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The old (ancient should say) cores are what people use when it comes to MAME, and RA is now arguably more popular and famous than MAME or any of its alt builds.
A state of things that basically shits on years of real development and the worthy quality emulation everyone should aspire to, sacrificed for instead a clusterfuck of obsolete builds, multiple old dumps/roms, and drivers from the past, coming back to take over the present and freeze it, which for the future of emulation means
RetroTitanic.

Mamedev might be stiff and stubborn on several topics, it's a serious problem because they're really not helping people appreciate their work, but what RA did with MAME was really stupid, had they been smarter maybe everyone could have benefited from a better relationship.
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