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News from January 1999|
N64 Emulator Legal Issues:
Sunday, January 31st, 1999
After discussing emulators with my attorney and reviewing past
emulation cases, he has informed me that these other cases have
determined that emulation is legal as long as information needed to
emulate was not obtained through illegal means
(meaning looking at the original code or other illegal activities).
There have been many emulators in the past, and a few have gone to
court. Most notably was the case between Coleco and Atari where Coleco
built a 2600 expansion module that allowed you to play Atari 2600 games.
Coleco won this case. Examples of other commercial emulators like
Amiga's IBM emulator that was released along with the Amiga's launch.
Or a few years later, Amax and other companies released Mac emulators
for the Amiga. Mac also had a few IBM emulators of their own.
What's similar about all these examples is that either the defendant
won, a judge threw it out of court, or no lawsuit was ever filed because
of the precedence the Atari vs. Coleco case made. Recently, Sony has
filed a lawsuit against Connectix for their Playstation emulator for
the Mac. I'm sure that Connectix will also win this case because of
the above cases. The recent garbage that certain companies have said
about emulation is totally incorrect. Nintendo said: "Bottom line,
emulators are illegal. The Nintendo 64 emulator infringes on Nintendo's
intellectual property rights including copyrights and circumvents
Nintendo's Anti-piracy Security System." Now we know by the Atari vs.
Coleco case that emulation is not illegal, so the first sentence is
wrong. Secondly, just because someone circumvents an anti-piracy
security system doesn't make it illegal. You have a legal right to
make a backup copy of software. I'd say that if anything is illegal
it's the anti-piracy system that doesn't allow you to make legal
backup copies of your software.
UltraHLE Compatibility Chart:
Demi has released a N64 compatibility chart. Thanks to Retrogames
for the news.
CTW Defence of Emulators:
The Feburary 1st issue of CTW has an interesting artical about
emulation where Stuart Campbell defends it.
Killers? can be read on-line via a scan done by Kazuya. Thanks
to Retrogames for the news.
WORKING N64 EMULATOR, DEAD:
Saturday, January 30th, 1999
Well, it seems it's gone as fast as it came. As you can read by
clicking on the above link: UltraHLE, the N64 emulator, has been pulled
from their server and the authors have discontinued its development.
You can read more gory details as well as Nintendo's reply on IGN64:
Oh well, easy come, easy go. Besides, I have a N64 that I haven't
played in probably 4 months, so I'm not too hurt by this announcement.
Last Days for a Chance to Win $20:
Sunday will be your last chance to join the Arcade@Home mailing
list for your chance to win $20. Also, next month I'll be giving away
something VERY special instead of $20 (and worth a lot more too).
Details are being finalized now, but expect an announcement in the next
few days. Join the mailing list now to register for next month's
Pugsy's MAME Cheats Updated:
Pugsy's MAME cheat database has been updated. To quote the author:
"Lots more Ne-Geo cheats have been found and added as well cheats for a
lot of the games introduced by the last two betas." Download it from
the M.A.M.E. section under Utilities.
Going for 2 Million Visitors!
Remember just a few days ago I said I wouldn't give any new announcements
about breaking visitors records because they were being broken almost
every day? Well, the UltraHLE N64 emulator has really sent counters
through the roof! Yesterday, Arcade@Home had 22,565 real visitors (many
sites quote a "hit" count which would be just over 38,000). Also, over
171,000 page views! All this leads to the fact that Arcade@Home will
pass the 2 million visitor mark probably within the next 24 hours!
2 Million Visitors and Beyond!
In just over 2 months, Arcade@Home has had an additional 1,000,000
visitors! Thanks for all your support.
WORKING N64 EMULATOR PROOF!!!
Friday, January 29th, 1999
Working N64 emulator and screen shots to prove it! VERY cool! Click on
the thumb-nails to see a larger image (images courtesy of IGN64). Read
a fairly detailed review of its operation also at IGN64:
"Pentium PC 64".
Again: please don't ask me for N64 ROMs, I have none and don't know
where any are.
WORKING N64 EMULATOR!!!
Thursday, January 28th, 1999
I don't care much for console emulation, but this is HUGE! It appears
that N64 emulation is now possible! You need a Voodoo video card, a
Pentium II 300Mhz+, and 64MB of RAM for it to run, but it's supposed to
provide PERFECT (and fast) emulation of many games! Who knows what
will happen when Nintendo finds out (Sony just filed a law suite
against Connectix for their Playstation emulator). I don't have any
Nintendo ROMs (besides in my personal cartridges) so I can't say first
hand if it works, but everything I hear tells me it's for real. Please
don't ask me for N64 ROMs, I have none and don't know where any are.
MAME32 v0.35 Beta 2 Released!
MAME32 (the Windows 9x/NT version of MAME) has been released. Download
it from the M.A.M.E. section.
Win $20 Just For Joining:
Wednesday, January 27th, 1999
You only have a few days left this month to join the Arcade@Home
mailing list. On February 1st, I'll be picking an active member at
random and award $20 (US) CASH! Join today and maybe you will be the
one to get the lucky e-mail. Also, I have big plans for new prizes in
the coming months. The longer you're on the list, the more chances you
have to win.
The Windows port is getting closer to being released. 90% of the games
run and 85% of the sounds are working. No ETA yet on a beta version,
but it's getting closer. Alex has got Blaster working, which he believes
will lead to emulating Joust 2 and Mystic Marathon. Joust 2 is a great
game, and much harder than Joust. The next beta is waiting for Toobin!
to be finished which is getting close (only periodical resets and sprites
remain to be worked out).
NeoMame v0.35 Beta 2 Released:
This is the NeoGeo only version of MAME that includes the joystick
fix and newer NeoGeo games. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.
Update to The Flyer and Poster Archive:
Tuesday, January 26th, 1999
The Flyer and Poster Archive has been updated to v1.5. This is a great
arcade art archive that can be used along with your screen shots in
Arcade@Home (it alternates between the two pictures). To configure
Arcade@Home to do this, add a new line to your MAME.CFG file:
ALTSS = C:\MAME\ALTSS
Obviously, you need to specify the correct dirctory for your machine. Arcade@Home
will default to looking in your ALTSS directory if you don't specify
one in your MAME.CFG file.
MAME v0.35 Beta 2 Joystick Fix:
Monday, January 25th, 1999
The joystick problem with MAME v0.35 beta 2 has been fixed and is
available for download on the M.A.M.E. section. NOTE:
for several hours I had posted the wrong fixed version (I posted the
version without Neo-Geo support called NeoFree). If Arcade@Home
reports only 1,000 games and/or you can't run any Neo-Geo games, you
need to download the correct version that's currently posted. Sorry
for this mix-up :(
Broke Yet Another Record:
This is getting old ;-) 14,327 real visitors yesterday. I'm not going
to report any additional hit records, well, maybe landmarks like 20,000.
AMAME v0.35 Beta 2 Released:
Sunday, January 24th, 1999
AMAME v0.34 beta 2 (the unofficial AMD/PII compiled version of MAME)
has been released to be up to date with MAME. Download it from the
Broke Another Record Yesterday:
Well, I guess the Arcade@Home v0.35a/b release went well because
another visitor record was broken yesterday. Okay, maybe the release
of MAME v0.35 beta 2 helped just a little ;-) 13,396 visitors! (not
counter or page view hits either, but real visitors).
MAME v0.35 Beta 2 Released!
Saturday, January 23rd, 1999
MAME v0.35 Beta 2 has been released! Download it from the M.A.M.E.
Arcade@Home v0.35b Released!
This version fixes the following problems:
Download it from the Front-Ends section.
- Fixed problem with compatibility with MAME v0.35 beta 2 (game "si_cv" listed first).
- Fixed problem where if you didn't specify a complete path for your
default MAME executable, it would give an error and quit.
- Added auto frame skipping (make sure you change your MAME.CFG file
to read "frameskip = auto")
- Fixed problem with small icon view having jumbled icons on startup.
- Fixed a problem when Arcade@Home and MAME were in different directories,
it couldn't find the Arcade.txt file.
- Corrected the keyboard map keys and alignment.
Arcade@Home and the 3Dfx Banshee:
It appears that there's a problem with the newest reference drivers
for the 3Dfx Banshee (I have this card as well). If you have this card
and you're not seeing any screen shots, you have one of three choices.
First, you can turn off auto sizing of the screen shots. Secondly,
you can try using a different video driver (I used the latest Diamond
Banshee driver and the problem was resolved). Or thirdly, you could
convert your screen shots to GIFs (because a different tool is used for
the GIF files). I've been trying to isolate the problem, but it
appears to be an issue with the video driver and not my code. At least
there are ways around the problem.
How Popular is the Arcade@Home Front-End?
Well, 2,852 people downloaded it in the first 24 hours of its release!
That's a LOT of downloads for a front-end. Of those, I've only
received a handful of problem e-mails (thanks beta testers!) There were
a few cosmetic problems reported and a few minor bugs. But other than
that, it went fairly good. I'll be releasing a maintenance release in
the next few days to patch up these few problems. If you have any
issues with Arcade@Home v0.35a, please let me know so I can get it
included in this release.
Arcade@Home v0.35a Released!
Friday, January 22nd, 1999
You heard it right! Arcade@Home v0.35a has been released! This
version has been worked on for several months and has a huge amount
of new features while still retaining it's classic, easy to use,
interface. The new features are as follows:
Please note that because it uses a new version of the compiler, I'm
only posting the complete install. Future upgrades will be available
as a small <200KB file. This was done to make sure that there weren't
any problems. Download it from the Front-Ends section.
- Auto downloading of ROMs and sound samples from multiple internet sites!
- Larger screen shots (auto scaling and aspect ratio correction)
- Can sort by Game, Year, Times played, Last time played, Total time
played, Manufacture, File name, Sample file name, Clone name, Number
of players, Control type, and Video type.
- Can hide non-working games.
- Can hide clone and/or Neo-Geo games (or list just Neo-Geo games).
- Detailed verify all ROMs option which verifies all ROMS (clone or not).
- Help tab also displays working status, CPUs and driver details.
- Can install Arcade@Home anywhere you wish.
- Can use PMAME or AMAME as your default MAME executable (no need to
rename as MAME.EXE).
- Checkbox to hide the screen shots and game settings tab for a wide game
- Automatically detects a new version of MAME & searches for new games.
- Can configure an alternate screen shot directory for viewing alternate
screen shots (like flyers or side art). Defaults to "ARTS" directory
but you can specify with "altss = C:\MAME\ART" in the MAME.CFG file.
- Added Translucency and Stereo check boxes.
- Displays the last games' average FPS.
- Runtime MAME error detection and reporting.
- Detects and quits if you try to run two copies of Arcade@Home.
- Added new MAME v0.35 beta 1 frame skipping options.
- Added new MAME v0.35 beta 1 joystick options.
- Report that lists missing screen shots.
- Ability to view the Arcade@Home web site or send e-mail to the author.
- Much better window sizing capability (all functions scale to fit).
- Right mouse button brings up pop-up menu.
- Two different game icon options (alternate shows different icon types).
- Option to start games with the key (nice for those with arcade cabinets :)
- Hot mouse tracking and hot selection.
- Main window doesn't go invisible when doing certain functions.
Three New Arcade Cabinet Conversions:
With the release of Arcade@Home taking up much of my time, I wasn't
able to upload three new arcade cabinet conversions submitted to me
over the last week or so. But here they are: Michael Meddaugh, Brian
Ray Bowles, and Andy Prince's arcade cabinet conversions are available
on the Cabinet Pics section for your review. Andy's is a cocktail
machine (you don't see too many of these being converted, but they are
very cool). Check them out!
MAME32 v0.35 Beta 1 Released!
Thursday, January 21th, 1999
MAME32 v0.35 beta 1 has been released! Download it from the M.A.M.E.
NeoMAME v0.35 beta 1b Released:
Apollo has updated his version of MAME (only supports Neo-Geo games).
This version includes support for King of Fighters 98, Super Sidekicks 4,
Puzzle de Pon R, and the NeoBomber sound fix. Download it from the
Arcade@Home v0.35a Release Candidate 2:
Wednesday, January 20th, 1999
Arcade@Home v0.35a release candidate 2 was released to the beta testers
earlier today. The public release should be within the next 24 hours
(probably much sooner)! I'll be adding a list of new features later
this evening so stay tuned. Also, if you haven't already signed up for
the Arcade@Home Mailing List, do so now
if you want to be notified the instant of it's release.
Screen Shots for MAME v0.35 Beta 1:
The screen shots for MAME v0.35 beta 1 games have been added. Sorry for
the delay, but I've been busy getting the next release of Arcade@Home
ready. Download it from the Front-Ends section.
On-Line MAME Screen Shots:
The Complete set of MAME screen shots have also been updated. This allows
you to review all supported MAME games and see screen shots of each one.
Arcade@Home v0.35a Beta 6:
Monday, January 18th, 1999
Yesterday, Arcade@Home v0.35 beta 6 was released to the beta testers. A few new
enhancements and recommendations were added into this beta release. I'm
putting together the beta 7 release right now and I plan on this being
the last beta before the release candidate and then the public release.
If you haven't already signed up for the
Arcade@Home Mailing List, do so now. The
release is only a few days away.
Arcade@Home v0.35a Beta 5:
Saturday, January 16th, 1999
Arcade@Home v0.35 beta 5 has been released to the beta testers. Mostly,
slight enhancements have been made and it seems like there are no major
bugs. We're still on for a public release VERY shortly. To get
notified when it's released, join the
Arcade@Home Mailing List.
Right from the Retrocade team leader "Brian Stern". Following are the
current enhancements to the next release of Retrocade: New game: Mario
Brothers. Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr, and Mario Brothers now have
emulated sound. High score save in Galaga and Dig Dug. Dipswitches in
Pacman and Red Baron. Neil's got Toobin' pretty close. Better sound
tempo in Burgertime. And, sampled sound in Space Invaders and Space
Invaders part II.
Arcade@Home v0.35a Beta 1:
Thursday, January 14th, 1999
Arcade@Home v0.35a beta 1 went out to the beta testers today. If no major
problems are discovered, expect a release very soon! Join the
Arcade@Home Mailing List to get notified
the instant it's released. Details on the new features will be coming
Neo-MAME v0.35 Beta 1a Released:
Apollo69 has updated his Neo-Geo only version of MAME to include support
for King of Fighters 98 as well as Super Sidekicks 4. Download it from
the M.A.M.E. section.
New Version of Arcade@Home:
Monday, January 11th, 1999
In the next day or two, a new version of Arcade@Home is going out to
the beta testers! If all things go as planned, it should be released
to the public shortly there after. I won't list the new features until
the night before it gets released, but rest assured, it adds a TON of
features without cluttering the interface. You probably want to join
the Arcade@Home Mailing List now, so
you'll be notified immediately after it's posted.
ArcadeOS V1.5 Released:
ArcadeOS (the DOS front-end by Brian Lewis) has been updated to version
1.5. It adds a few new features, bug fixes, and supports the new MAME
v0.35 beta 1. Download it from the Front-Ends section.
Broke Another Record Yesterday:
Yesterday, Arcade@Home broke yet another visitor record, 12,454.
More Site Changes:
Saturday, January 9th, 1999
I wasn't happy with the way the site looked so I updated it. If
everyone likes it, I'll use this same look and feel throughout the site.
Let me know if it doesn't look right with your browser.
AMAME v0.35 Beta 1:
Friday, January 8th, 1999
The AMD processor optimized version of MAME has been released.
Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.
New Visitor Record Yesterday:
Yesterday we broke another record for the number of visitors in one day:
12,332. Welcome to all new visitors.
MAME v0.35 Beta 1 Released!
Thursday, January 7th, 1999
Late last night MAME v0.35 beta 1 was released! Details coming shortly.
Download from the M.A.M.E. section.
PMAME v0.35 Beta 1:
The Pentium optimized version of MAME has been released. Download it
from the M.A.M.E. section.
MAME32 v0.34 Released!
Monday, January 4th, 1999
The Windows 9X/NT version of MAME has been updated to the latest
release version of MAME (v0.34)! It's been quite some time since
the last release of MAME32, so I'm sure everyone is anxious to get
their hands on this. Download from the M.A.M.E. section.
Mailing List Winner Selected!
Congratulations go out to Dannyel from Chile. He has been selected to
receive the $20 cash this month just for joining the Arcade@Home
mailing list. Don't miss your chance to win $20 next month, sign-up
My New ISDN Router:
Got my new ISDN router a few days ago and it's working out great! My
ISP supports compression, so it really goes with those text files (.5Mb/sec)!
What's nice, is that it allows me to have all my computers networked
together and all can be on the internet at the same time and still only
use 1 IP address and a standard dial-up account! If any of you have a
small in-house network like me, the ZyXEL Prestige 100IH is a great
product. No, I don't have cable modem access in my area, but I don't
have to share my bandwidth with all of my neighbors either ;-)
Two New Cabinet Conversions:
"Fly" and Angelo Russo have contributed pictures of their MAME cabinet
conversions. Both are very nicely done. Check them out on the
Cabinet Pics section.
For those not from the midwest United States, we've had a fairly good
blizzard here for the past few days. I got "lucky" with only 8 inches
of snow and an inch of ice. Chicago got something like 21 inches, so
it could have been worse. It's nothing like the blizzard of '76 we
had when I was a kid. We went without power or heat for 5 days, thank
goodness for the fireplace (the wind chill was something like -50 the
entire time). The wind chill is about that tonight, but this time I
have heat ;-)
MAME V0.34 Final Released!
Friday, January 1st, 1999
MAME v0.34 final has been released! Download it from the M.A.M.E.
PMAME & AMAME v0.34rc2 Released:
The Pentium and AMD optimized versions of MAME v0.34 final has also
been released. Download then from the M.A.M.E. section as well.
Retrocade Recorded Sessions:
Want to show-off your arcade skills? Submit your Retrocade recorded
sessions to Arcade@Home! This is NOT like other Retrocade recorded
session archives on the web in that this one is real-time. You upload
your session using the simple on-line form and it's instantly updated!
Anyone can download it right after you update it. So come on players,
show us what you got!
If I wasn't parting like it was 1999 yesterday, I wouldn't have missed
the MAME v0.34 final release ;-) Anyway, happy 1999. I'll be selecting
a monthly mailing list winner later today, hope you get the e-mail!