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News from August 1999

Tuesday, August 31st, 1999
Game-Room Explosion in Moscow:
A bomb in a video game machine exploded in a Moscow shopping center adjacent to the Kremlin which injured at least 30 people. No information was available as to what game it was nor the game's motive for self-exploding. Viktor Biryukov, spokesman for the Moscow police, said it was unclear whether the evening blast was a bomb, an accident, or a game that was mad because it was finally beaten*. Read all the details at the above link. Thanks to MikEy for the news. * Writer's embellishment.

nVIDIA GeForce256 Hype Machine:
Why not add to the hype of this product. nVIDIA's GeForce256 was announced today as nVIDIA's web server died from all the reloads =) This chip may be the nails in 3dfx's coffin. Visit the above link for great information, stats, pictures, and links that should keep you busy for hours reading up on it. To summarize, it could be almost twice as fast as a TNT2 while using fewer CPU resources. Sounds good, when do I get an evaluation unit? =)

9,000,000th Visitor is...
JoseQ from some site called EmuViews. It was confirmed by a change in color of the counter. What does he win? A free copy of the Arcade@Home front-end! =) And my server didn't even die from the reloads this time.

Monday, August 30th, 1999
Moonlit Coalition:
A version of Sunset from April was released to show that the emulator does indeed emulate the N64 at a very basic level. You can download it at the above link but don't expect to actually play anything (it seemed to kind of work, then stoped for me and others that tried). There's also some type of shake-up going on with the programmers, you can read about that on their site as well.

Now don't get me wrong, I owned 4 different Amigas myself. But come on, when will you accept the fact that the "king" is dead. =) Check out the above link for a funny cartoon of "Sightings".

Breaking 9 Million:
Should break 9 million visitors today. Please note that there's no prize so please don't hit reload till my server crashes =)

Sunday, August 29th, 1999
New MAME Cheats by Pugsy:
Finally, some real emulation news (this weekend has been dead). Pugsy has released a new version of his MAME cheats that adds support for new MAME v0.36 beta 3 games. This version has 16,461 cheats for 1,574 games. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section under Utilities.

Saturday, August 28th, 1999
Win an Apple iBook Laptop:
Register to win an Apple iBook to be given away on September 30th! Follow the above link to register. By the way, I don't recieve any profit from you registering, it's only used to gather demographics about Arcade@Home's visitors. So be honest.

MAME Beta 4 News:
A slow day. But there is news that MAME v0.36 beta 4 will contain a quite a few great new games. Namely Namco System 1 and many games currently only emulated on Raine.

Friday, August 27th, 1999
3 New Neo-Geo Downloads:
Geoshock has added three new Neo-Geo game titles to their site. 2 hard to find Japanese MGD-II games (Bakatonosama Mahjong Manyuki & Minnasanno Okagesamadesu) and the controversial game Metal Slug X. They are available on the Geoshock site at the above link.

Flyer and Poster Archive Updated:
The Flyer and Poster Archive for MAME has been updated to version 3.6. This release adds 63 new images and replaces 31 for a total of 823 flyer images. Download it from his site at the above link.

Battlezone II Demo:
Okay, so it's not emulation related, but it is kind of retro. Activision released a demo version of the Battlezone 2 game. It's only 14.9MB and worth the download. Check it out at the above link.

z26 v1.34 Released:
Oops, missed this release a few days ago :( This version fixes "a minor problem that was introduced in version 1.33 that would cause some games to display in the wrong position or to display the wrong number of scanlines." Download it from the Atari 2600 section.

New neogeo.drv File:
This is an updated version of KBMAME's neogeo.drv file. This adds support for Art of Fighting (MVS) and a few other games. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section (next to the KBM4 program). Thanks to Daves VGC for the file.

Classic Gamer Magazine Debuts:
Classic Gamer Magazine is a full-color quarterly magazine dedicated to classic videogames. It's even styled in the spirit of the original videogame magazines of the 1980's. Check out their site at the above link to check out the articles in the current issue or purchase a subscription.

MacMAME v0.36 Beta 3 Released:
MacMAME v0.36 beta 3 is released. This brings it up to date the the DOS version. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

Redump v2.2:
Redump v2.2 has been released. This version converts Art of Fighting from MGD2 to MVS format (as well as many others). Download it from the M.A.M.E. section. Thanks to Retrogames for the file.

Thursday, August 26th, 1999
X-Mame v0.36 Beta 3.1 Released:
X-Mame the X11/Unix port of MAME was upgraded to the v0.36 beta 3 source. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

Catch the Monkey Shooting Gallery!
My, and probably your, prayers have been answered! Catch the Monkey Shooting Gallery is here! Try your skill at the above link. Thanks to DTMF for this great ShockWave app.

Retrocade for Windows:
The alpha version of Retrocade for Windows is due to be released to the alpha testers this evening. I'll let you know how well it works when I get a chance to play with it.

ArcadeOS v2.30 Released:
Brian Lewis' DOS based front-end for MAME, ArcadeOS, was updated to v2.30. New features include:
  • Sidewinder support
  • Spinner support
  • DOS Shell (can use DOS edit)
  • Monitor timings can now be adjusted 'on screen'
  • Updated to use the new 'native' arcade mode of RAINE
  • Added 'Screen Shot' screen saver
  • ArcadeOS will now look for 'clone' screenshots
  • Screen Shots can now optional be scaled up to fill the screen
  • Mouse Sensitivity can now be adjusted from within AOS
  • 'Alternative' screen shots changed to use MAME32's Flyers and Cabinets directories
  • '1 key press' emulator change
  • 'Brief' logging added
  • PNG,'Flyer' and 'Cabinet' directories added for other emulators
  • Virtual Memory system removed
  • Emulator Swap crash bug fixed
  • Semitransparency can now be altered from within AOS
  • 'Diagonals On/Off' option added
Download it from the Front-Ends section. Thanks to Taylor B. for the news.

Wednesday, August 25th, 1999
Arcade@Home: Monkey Free Site!
How many of you out there want to kill that monkey when you catch him? If you don't know what I'm talking about, just surf around a bit on other emulation sites and you'll want to kill the monkey too. That has got to be the most annoying ad ever created. Makes me want to write a Shockwave app that allows me to use him as target practice. Actually, if there's anyone out there with these Shockwave skills, create a "Catch the Monkey Shooting Gallery" and I'll link to your site. But do it quickly, because I may be losing my sanity.

Tuesday, August 24th, 1999
AMAME & PMAME v0.36 Beta 3:
AMAME and PMAME v0.36 beta 3 are released. These are optimized versions of MAME. Note that AMAME should be used for PII/PIII/Celeron/AMD processors. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

More Registered Users:
A couple more good people out there have registered their copy of the Arcade@Home front-end. James F. from PA sent a tasty batch of Appalachian Brewing Company's beverages and Rob D. sent a care package of "The forbidden fruit" all the way from The Netherlands. For those of you curious about sending beer internationally or even over state lines I believe the evidence points to it's either legal or tolerated. The two packages above contained glass bottles and one of the soldiers didn't make it from each package: RIP :-( Obviously, customs and anyone who handled these packages new what the contents were (the smell of beer soaked cardboard is very distinguishable and pungent) =) Don't worry, I gave the brave soldiers who didn't make it a proper burial.

Retrogaming Times Issue #24:
Tomorrow's Heroes has released issue #24 of their on-line Retrogaming Times magazine. This issue includes stories on the Classic Gaming Expo in Las Vegas, compares HanaHo's HotRod to Arcade 2000's control panels and arcade cabinets, and other items like MAME game reviews. Check it out at the above link.

Redump v2.1 Released:
Redump converts your Neo-Geo games from MGD2 to MVS format without redownloading. This version correctly converts 2020 Super Baseball as well as Ghost Pilots. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section. Thanks to Retrogames for the file.

Monday, August 23rd, 1999
Retrocade for Windows:
An Alpha version of Retrocade for Windows should be released tomorrow! This will be a private release for the beta testers (or should we be called alpha testers now). When I get it, I'll report how well it plays. I've heard that most games work except for the vector games. We'll see.

MAME v0.36 Beta 3 Screenshots:
All MAME v0.36 beta 3 screen shots are on-line for your viewing pleasure. Check them out at the above link.

Sunday, August 22nd, 1999
Unofficial MAME32 v0.36 Beta 3:
P2L97 has released his unofficial MAME32 v0.36 beta 3 with autofire. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

EMU+ v0.36 Beta 3 Released:
EMU+ is an unofficial version of MAME that adds overclocking of every CPU (on-the-fly), auto fire (variable), save states for ALL Neo-Geo games, continuous save states, demo mode and more. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

SideWinder Fixed MAME v0.36 Beta 3:
If you've been having problems getting your SideWinder joystick to work with MAME, this updated version corrects this problem. Note that this is NOT the same v0.36 beta 3 build that was posted last night. This has been modified and recompiled at about 2:30am EDT on Sunday. The problem is with Allegro and the corrected source is included with the download. If you have a SideWinder joystick, download v0.36b3 again from Arcade@Home's M.A.M.E. section. Thanks to TonyD for the patched source code.

Saturday, August 21st, 1999
MAME v0.36 Beta 3 Binary!
Go get it from the M.A.M.E. section. 41 new games in this release to bring the total to 1642.

MAME v0.36 Beta 3!
I'm compiling it now! Will be on-line shortly. Here's what's new:
  • Flash Gal [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Air Wolf [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Parodius [Nicola Salmoria]
  • '88 Games [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Vendetta [Phil Stroffolino]
  • Thunder Cross (no collision detection, probably protection) [Bryan McPhail]
  • Super Contra [Manuel Abadia]
  • Off the Wall [Aaron Giles]
  • Enduro Racer [Andrew Prime]
  • Samurai (Taito) [Phil Stroffolino]
  • Nunchackun [Phil Stroffolino]
  • Go Go Mr. Yamaguchi / Yuke Yuke Yamaguchi-kun (not working) [Phil Stroffolino]
  • Hunchback (Scramble and Donkey Kong conversions) [Mike Coates]
  • Dokaben [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Capcom Baseball [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Empire City: 1931 (= Street Fight) [Gerald Vanderick]
  • Repulse (= Son of Phoenix) [Gerald Vanderick]
  • '99 The Last War (= Son of Phoenix) [Gerald Vanderick]
  • Strider (Japan set 2) [Marco Cassili]
  • Sunset Riders (5 new sets) [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Aliens (Japan) [Yasuhiro Ogawa]
  • Simpsons (Japan) [Yasuhiro Ogawa]
  • Gryzor (= Contra) [Yasuhiro Ogawa]
  • Akuma-Jou Dracula (= Haunted Castle) [Yasuhiro Ogawa]
  • E-Swat (protected, not working) [Andrew Prime]
  • Bermuda Triangle (Japan) [Alessio Manuele]
  • 64th Street (Japan) [Alessio Manuele]
Like I said, compiling it now, check back in 5 minutes...

MAME v0.36 Beta 3:
I hear that MAME v0.36 beta 3 is going to be released in a few minutes! Stay tuned!

State of Retro Emulation:
I've seen some things in the past few months that I believe I should pass along. It seems that most companies have come to the conclusion that retro emulation is actually good for business. Several things point to this:
  • Capcom licensing their out of production arcade ROMs to Hanaho (HotRod joystick).
  • The IDSA is being very quiet about retro emulation.
  • Hasbro having the booth next to Hanaho (HotRod joystick) at the Classic Gaming Expo in Las Vegas.
There are several companies including Habsro that have learned that retro emulation stirs up interest in their classic games and they can use that interest to design a new game based on a classic or release their own emulated or duplicated game. Hasbro has been especially good at this with several very popular titles. Since companies like Hasbro and Capcom control the IDSA, they have an influence on what they should focus on. Obviously, the focus should be on the warez, N64 ROMs, etc. that are on the internet as well as those who make copies of PSX, and PC CD-ROMs in quantity and sell them. Please note that retro emulation does NOT include SNES, Gameboy, N64, PSX, Genesis, and others.

Turkey Disaster Donations:
Turkey's earthquake on Tuesday has claimed the lives of over 10,000 and estimates indicate it could increase another 35,000. If you're interested in donating for relief assistance you can easily do so at the above American Red Cross donations link (just specify "Disaster Relief Fund"). You can donate on-line or via phone with a credit card. The doctor that started my wife's hospice organization went to Turkey to visit family last week-end. No one has heard from her since the earthquake. Hopefully her and her family are okay as well as the rest of Atila's family that are not accounted for.

Friday, August 20th, 1999
Arcade Emulation at 100%:
Bob from Arcade Emulation sent me an e-mail saying that both of his servers are now running again. About a week ago he lost one server's hard drive and was forced to run on just one server. If you experienced slow download speed recently, that was the cause. The drive was replaced and both servers are again running at 100%. Visit his site on the ROM Files section.

Redump v2.0 Released:
Redump is a tool that converts your NeoGeo ROMs from MGD2 to MVS format. v2.0 adds support for 2020 Super Baseball. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section under Utilities. Thanks to Arcade ROM Heaven for the file.

Thursday, August 19th, 1999
New RomCenter Data Files:
RomCenter released new data files so it can be used with Callus 0.42 Rage 0.9 and CPS2 ROMs (even though there isn't a CPS2 emulator). This is in addition to the MAME and Raine 0.24a ROM managing included with RomCenter v1.61. Download it from their site at the above link.

Ultra.ini V1.0.19 Released!
I finally got sick of the copy-cat Ultra.ini files out there that mostly just deleted all the credits. Therefore, I've released the most complete UltraHLE ini file on the planet. Download it from the N64 - UltraHLE section.

Wednesday, August 18th, 1999
Arcade 2000 Price and Details:
The Arcade 2000 cabinet costs $1550 for everything including clamp on controllers (steering wheel, Star Wars yoke, and Tron joystick). It also includes a special 19" monitor that syncs down to 15kHz (if needed for true emulation) and up to 120kHz with the maximum resolution of 1600x1280. Check out their site for more details at the above link.

Arcade 2000 Taking Cabinet Orders:
Arcade 2000 is now taking orders for their cabinet. This cabinet includes just about everything (or maybe I should say it includes everything). (2) 8-way joysticks with 6 buttons each, (1) 4-way joystick for Pac-Man, etc., arcade trackball, (2) spinners, and even attachments that clamp to the front for a steering wheel, Tron stick, and Star Wars yoke! They don't have an on-line order form yet so you'll have to contact them via e-mail. I'm going to get more information on this product to pass on to you. Visit their site at the above link.

Updated Catver.ini File:
The Catver.ini file gives you catetory and version information in Arcade@Home. Gerardo J. has updated this file to include the latest games through MAME v0.36 beta 2. Download it from the Front-Ends page.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1999
6 College Girls?
My wife invited 6 of her friends from college over to spend a couple of days here. Oh, did I forget to say they also brought all their kids? Needless to say, 8 adults and 7 kids spending a couple of days in my house is just a tad excessive. I think I'm sleeping in a tent in the play room with the kids tonight. I'm going to need mass quantities of beer to get through this.

Unofficial MAME32 Source:
p2197 replied VERY quickly to my request for unofficial MAME32 source code. It's available on the M.A.M.E. page under the unofficial MAME32 executable.

Unofficial MAME32 v0.36 Beta 2:
There was a release of an unofficial MAME32 v0.36 beta 2 yesterday. I didn't post it because no source was included. I've contacted the author "p2197" and asked him to update is source code page. The last time I asked him to supply the source he did so within a day. Therefore, I'm going to post the executable with the assumption he will update his page as quickly as before. You can download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

z26 v1.33 Released:
This great Atari 2600 emulator gets another update. This version includes the following changes:
    An assortment of 50Hz video modes for use with PAL games. These modes are all 256 scanlines tall so even the tallest PAL games like aciddrop.bin and seamnstr.bin can be seen completely in a more or less normal size video mode. Unfortunately not all monitors can be used with these modes. Old fixed-frequency monitors have problems with them, but modern multi-frequency monitors that are capable of syncing at 50Hz are pretty common so I expect most people won't have problems with them. To enable these video modes to be used automatically whenever z26 is running a recognized PAL game, specify the -5 command line switch. z26 will then choose a 50Hz video mode that most closely approximates the 60Hz mode that you've selected with the -v command line switch.
Download it from the Atari 2600 section.

Monday, August 16th, 1999
RomCenter v1.61 Released:
RomCenter is a MAME ROM file manager. Here's what's new in this release:
  • Added rom move to the repair engine.
  • Merge error when no roms are available
  • File no found when no emulators are selected and building mame data file
  • No good dump roms with crc of 00000000 not detected (stupid bug, sorry for that)
  • Crater raider bug
  • Locomotion bug
  • Crazy kong display error
  • Emulation path correctly set in new mame data files
  • Wait cursor during data building process.
  • Wait cursor while option checking
  • Status bar font problem fixed
  • Build button is default button in mame import dialog
  • Drag & drop of files with more than 67 character.
  • Repairing write protected roms
  • Unknown rom file line for directories in drag & drop report.
  • Mame.dat data file line doesn't appear in dropdown list
  • Emulator executable display is not updated ofter a mame import
  • Left list refreshed after clicking on update button.
  • Don't merge if there are nothing to merge.
  • Jpg pictures used in html report (for non microsoft browser)
  • '.' can be used in data files names
  • Support for roms long file names.
Download it from their site at the above link.

Another Registered User:
Well, Arcade@Home now has 3 registered users. Dave D. from the Netherlands sent me 3 liters of Heineken and Grolsch. I really thought that the Arcade@Home front-end had a larger user base then just 3 people. But, I must be mistaken =) Thanks Dave! It will be enjoyed.

Sunday, August 15th, 1999
bleem! v1.4a Released:
A new version of bleem! was released (this is only for people with the CD-Key). This version adds the following:
  • Added Work-Around for CD-ROM/DVDROM Access -- People with DVDs or CD-Roms that were having problems reading the CD-KEY should try this version.
  • AutoConfig KeyBoard Controller 1 on First Boot
  • Eject Menu Option Disables Sound Immediately
  • Sound AutoConfig at 44K, 16Bit, Stereo on First Boot
  • Exit FullScreen Mode by Pressing Left Mouse Button
  • Improved D3D Screen Transition Logic (Menus <-> Game) -- This will cause less "weirdness" when games switch from different modes/sections of the game.
  • Updated Internal Compatibility Listings DataBase -- Less games will show up as "untested"
You can download it from the above link or purchase bleem! here.

TRWin v1.04 Released:
This release of this new Nintendo 64 emulator fixes a few problems that were in the first version. It fixes the Voodoo2 problem, improves support for Riva128 boards, and fixes the flip-ROM problems. Download it from the above link.

Saturday, August 14th, 1999
ArcadeAtHome.com For Sale:
See the above link for a guy trying to selling Bomb.com on e-bay for $95,000. If anyone is interested in buying ArcadeAtHome.com, I'm willing to let it go for the discounted price of $50,000 =) Thanks to blonketyblonk for the link.

EMU+ Has Moved:
Just wanted to inform everyone that EMU+ (an alternate version of MAME which adds overclocking and autofire) has a new web site. The new address is http://gato.ings.com/emuplus.

Happ Controls Project Update:
I connected Happ Controls' USB game control interface and 2-1/4" track ball to my system to see out how well it works. The USB interface is amazingly simple. I plugged it in while my computer was on, it noticed it was installed, it asked to install drivers, and it was working. Not even a reboot required. This is the second USB device I've installed and both were this easy. This installation was even easier because it didn't need any custom drivers (it asked for my Windows 98 disc and installed standard USB drivers).
It took a few minutes to sort through all the harnesses cables to figure out which wire does what. I ran their SDK tool to map the keyboard buttons and I was in business. You can only currently map the keys to a-z, but this isn't an issue because MAME allows you to change the default key settings for all games at once. I got the Driving model of Happ's USB control interface because I wanted the option to add a steering wheel in the future and the driving model has more programmable keys (I believe). I've confirmed that you can program up to 18 buttons (I'll use 2 for the trackball buttons). That leaves me with 16 buttons, EXACTLY the number of buttons/joystick switches on my arcade cabinet! Don't you just love it when a plan comes together. I tested the trackball and the programmed keys while running the DOS version of MAME and it worked like a champ (I didn't test it in pure DOS mode but it's supposed to work there too). I have no way of testing the speed of this device, but the USB bus runs at 15Mbps so I'm sure it's faster than your typical keyboard. In any case, I'm *VERY* impressed. Now I've got to rebuild my control panel and replace my current hacked-up interface electronics with this one simple device. I can't wait to get started!

Friday, August 13th, 1999
TRWin Update:
First off, TRWin is much faster than Nemu64 and the FPS counter seems to be *MUCH* more accurate. Speed is to a point where games *are* playable. However, I did experience many graphics problems while trying to play games the TRWin site claims are almost perfect. I believe this has something to do with some Voodoo2 bugs that were introduced just recently. Also, EmuHQ is reporting that you need to set the UCodes manually for different games:
  • 0=Mario64
  • 1=Waverace and most others
  • 2=San Fran Rush and WayneGretsky 3D
  • 3=MK4 and others
It's a very good emulator for its first release. The Voodoo bugs are the only thing holding me back from adding this emulator to my site permanently. Note that I didn't add Nemu64 because it was too slow to be playable. This truly is the second N64 emulator that allows you to *play* games. More news as it develops.

New N64 Emulator: TRWin!
Here's the new N64 emulator, TRWin. It's based on TRWinGL, but was rewritten. Playable games include: Super Mario 64, Milo's Atro Lanes, Bomberman Hero, Gretski '98, Mortal Kombat 4, Quest 64, Rampage World Tour, Robotron, San Francisco Rush, Starfox 64, StarSoldiers, Superman, WarGods, WaveRace SE, Wetrix, and WonderProject J2.v64. Not all are prefect, but they are playable. More information on this emulator shortly. Download it from the above link. Thanks to EmuHQ for the news.

EMU+ v0.36 Beta 2 Released:
EMU+ v0.36 beta 2 was released. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

Rodimus Prime Updates AMAME & PMAME:
Rodimus Prime is back from his trip and has released AMAME & PMAME v0.36 beta 2. Please note that if you have a PII, PIII, Celeron, or AMD chip you should be using AMAME. PMAME should only be used for those with a Pentium "classic" or Pentium MMX. Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

Friday the 13th:
Didn't realize that it was Friday the 13th till just now. Wasn't a new Nintendo 64 emulator going to be released today? Doesn't sound like good plan to schedule your emulator to be released on Friday the 13th, does it?

Thursday, August 12th, 1999
Okay, Who's Gonna Hook Me Up?
It's almost time for me to mow the grass for the first time this year and I'm in need of a riding mower. I'm looking for a good one, like a John Deere or something at that level. But, they are all sold at suggested retail price. Does anyone out there work for a lawn and garden or tractor company and can hook me up with a good deal? I'll return a big plug for your company in return. If you can be of assistance, e-mail me at the above link.

Pugsy's MAME Cheats Updated:
Pugsy has updated is MAME cheat file to include cheats for new games added in MAME v0.35 final, v0.36b1 and v0.36b2. It's now 845K and includes 16,050 cheats for 1,530 games! Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

Wednesday, August 11th, 1999
MacMAME v0.36 Beta 2 Released:
For those of you out there with a Mac, MacMAME v0.36 beta 2 was released. This release adds the following:
  • In sync with DOS beta 2. [Brad Oliver, Aaron Giles]
  • All of the bugs reported with the new keyboard code and event handling in beta 1 should be resolved now. [Aaron Giles]
  • Rewrote the joystick code to match the new MAME specs, similar to what happened with the keyboard code in beta 1. The upshot is that MacMAME now supports a total of 16 joysticks with 12 buttons apiece. A similar rewrite will take place in an upcoming beta for the analog controls. [Brad Oliver]
  • Added a new option to the front-end to help identify the contents of a ROM .zip file. [John Butler]
Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

New Happ Controls Project:
I received the parts for my new arcade cabinet project! I'm using Happ Controls' USB game control interface and their 2-1/4" track ball. Both are arcade quality parts designed for easy setup and configuration. Over the next few weeks I'll be redesigning my arcade cabinet to incorporate these products. I'll also probably throw in a spinner just for kicks =) All in a 18" wide cabinet. In the next few days I'll be connecting the USB interface to see how well it works with the DOS version of MAME. Stay tuned...

Tuesday, August 10th, 1999
8 New Cabinet Conversions:
There are 8 new cabinet conversions on the Cabinet Pics section. They are located at the bottom of this section (noted as "NEW!"). Go check them out.

Classic Gaming Expo:
The Classic Gaming Expo '99 is this weekend at Plaza Hotel's 20,000 square foot convention center in Las Vegas (3 times the floor size of last years expo). Quite a long list of speakers, activities, and games are planned including:
  • Twin Galaxies tournaments and hi-score competitions including a $1,000 Joust arcade hi-score contest.
  • A Museum Exhibit featuring both historic and rare items.
  • Arcade machines available for play including: Computer Space, Pong, Asteroids, Battlezone, Joust, Tempest, Centipede, Star Wars, Tron, Gauntlet, Defender, Space Invaders, Donkey Kong, Sinistar, Crazy Climber, Zaxxon, Star Castle, Gorf, Qix, Venture, Gyruss, Robotron: 2084 and Wizard of Wor.
  • Home video game and computer game stations. Including Vectrex, ColecoVision, Bally Astrocade, Emerson Arcadia and just about every console ever produced.
  • Guests and speakers including designers and programmers of arcade and console classics.
  • Vendors and exhibitors including HanaHo (creators of the HotRod) and Arcade 2000.
  • A collectors' buy, sell & swap session.
  • World premiere of two new Atari 2600 games by Ebivision: Merlin's Walls and Pesco.
  • Raffle for a mint-condition arcade classic. Your choice of a Missile Command or Rip Off machine.
Basically, a lot going on in those two days. Check out the above link to read more about CGE'99.

Monday, August 9th, 1999
Replace the Arcade@Home Cabinet Picture:
Little known fact: In Arcade@Home's default settings you can replace the picture of my arcade cabinet to any image you what. Just copy an image to your Arcade directory called arcade.jpg. The default size is 213x361, but you can use a larger image if you like (note that the ratio stays 213:361). An example image can be found at the above link. Just copy it to your Arcade directory, run Arcade@Home, and check out the default settings. Thanks to Aymeric MUGNIER for creating this image.

New Enhanced MAME Sound Samples:
Four new MAME sound samples are now on-line. Donkey Kong Jr., Mario Bros., Q*Bert, and Reactor. The Donkey Kong Jr. and Mario Bros. samples are not the same ones that other sites are releasing today. These are the new sample sets with the static filtered out making them sound MUCH cleaner. The other two sets were already filtered and sampled at the correct frequency so they were left as-is. Download them from the M.A.M.E. section.

Saturday, August 7th, 1999
MAME v0.36 Beta 2 Released!
MAME v0.36 beta 2 has been released! This version adds the following new games bringing the total up to 1601 supported games:
  • Mad Crasher [Phil Stroffolino]
  • Vanguard II [Phil Stroffolino]
  • Missing in Action [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Lightning Fighters [Nicola Salmoria]
  • X-Men [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Sunset Riders (partially playable due to protection) [Oliver Stabel, Nicola Salmoria]
  • TMNT 2 (some gfx problems due to protection) [Oliver Stabel, Nicola Salmoria]
  • Ajax (preliminary) [Manuel Abadia]
  • Crime Fighters [Manuel Abadia]
  • Aliens [Manuel Abadia]
  • The Simpsons [Ernesto Corvi]
  • Gyrodine [Ernesto Corvi]
  • Son of Phoenix [Ernesto Corvi]
  • SRD Mission [Ernesto Corvi]
  • Haunted Castle [Bryan McPhail]
  • Garyo Retsuden [Bryan McPhail]
  • Crude Buster [Bryan McPhail]
  • Stadium Hero [Bryan McPhail]
  • Bomb Jack Twin [Mirko Buffoni]
  • Aztarac [Mathis Rosenhauer]
  • Bay Route [Andrew Prime]
  • Outrun [Andrew Prime]
  • Space Harrier [Andrew Prime]
  • Super Hangon [Andrew Prime]
  • ThunderJaws [Aaron Giles]
  • Batman [Aaron Giles]
  • Relief Pitcher [Aaron Giles]
  • Ginga NinkyouDen [Luca Elia]
  • Street Fight [Mark McDougall]
  • Rush & Crash (= Speed Rumbler)
  • Devastators (version Z) [Nicola Salmoria]
  • Hydra (prototype) [Aaron Giles]
Download it from the M.A.M.E. section.

RomCenter v1.60 Released:
RomCenter is a multi emulator ROMs parser. It audits, checks, adds and repairs ROMs. This release adds the following:
  • Multi emulator support (thru data files). Mame and Raine provided. More to come...
  • Change emulator from the main window
  • New audit option window with examples. (No new options yet...)
  • Current roms list statistics. (green, yellow and red flag in status bar)
  • No more error messages during zip scan.
  • Complemented crc handled.
  • New 'no good dump known' engine.
  • Faster zip scan
  • Audit engine improved
  • Auto mame version detection removed (now on-demand)
  • You can now change directory in 'export NeoGeo' option when disk D is not defined.
  • Repeated zip errors messages corrected
  • Error messages are in English now
Download it from their site at the above link.

Friday, August 6th, 1999
IBM Invents Hard Drive That's 3 Times Faster:
The Register has reported that IBM has invented a way to record data to a hard drive 3 times faster then is currently possible. The researchers explained it in this easy to understand paragraph
    "Current-induced switching in the orientation of magnetic moments is observed in cobalt-copper-cobalt structures, for currents flowing perpendicularly through the layers. Magnetic domains in adjacent cobalt layers can be manipulated controllably between stable parallel and antiparallel configurations by applying current pulses of the appropriate sign."
That makes perfect sense, why didn't I think of it? =)

EmuView's RetroFX Preview:
JoseQ of EmuViews has done a preview on the RetroFX version of Ghosts'n'Goblins. It looks amazing. Still no firm release date, but it seems it's close to a release. Get ready for a large download however, it's about 30MB.

Back from Boston:
I'm back from Boston so the updates should return to their normal frequency. I checked out Jillian's next to Fenway Park. Nice place. Billiards, video games, good cigars, and beer. If I lived in Boston, this place would be my second home. Thanks to those that recommended this place, well appreciated.

Wednesday, August 4th, 1999
MAME WIP Updated:
Great MAME work in process update. Best part is Hang-On's graphics are fixed and working drivers for Outrun, Space Harrier and Super Hang-On were submitted. Glad to see these S16AE games finally making it to MAME (they were one set of classics missing from MAME). Check out the entire update at the MAME WIP page at the above link.

Tuesday, August 3rd, 1999
8,000,000 Visitors:
The last few days were slow for news, but Arcade@Home still broke through the 8,000,000 visitor mark. And to top things off, my counter didn't die this time (maybe everyone took my message seriously that I wasn't giving anything away). Anyway, thanks for all your continued support.

Monday, August 2nd, 1999
Greetings from Boston:
Greetings from Boston. If anyone would like to register Arcade@Home while I'm out here (Chelmsford area) let me know =) Just warning you, I'm thirsty! Oh, and a pool hall would be good too =)

Deleting Screen Shots in Arcade@Home v0.36d:
The short answer? You can't. I was in the middle of coding the delete screen shot routine to work with the ZIPped screen shot file when I must have fallen asleep at my desk (something I do quite often). In any case, it doesn't work. It will be in the next release. Please note that you will not be able to delete screen shots from within your ZIPped screen shot file (if you are using that feature). I'll see about adding this support in the future though.

8 Million Visitors!
Arcade@Home is approaching the 8 million visitor mark (should happen today or tomorrow). Please don't hammer my server with reload/refreshes, yah ain't gonna' win nothin'. =) Thanks for your continued support.

Sunday, August 1st, 1999
Loser Mail Returns:
Here's my favorite loser mail from the last few days.:

    Are you gonna play with people's feet.....

    Do you really think people will keep on downloading your crap ?

    If you can't program just give up your whole d*mn sh*t... there are frontends avaliable which are made by people who can program.....
I love this e-mail. What possibly could "play with people's feet" mean? Oh, and I love the notion that I somehow force people to download things. Of course, no examples or alternatives were given. I think this lamer gave a real e-mail address so if you would like to share something with him, do so at the above link =)

Arcade@Home v0.36d Released!
v0.36c was a short-lived version =) Right after its release two people sent me e-mails about problems with ZIP image support. First, a problem with it crashing if you have an old version of unzip32.dll (version 5.4 is included with the full version of Arcade@Home and is required). Secondly, if your ZIPped images were upper case it couldn't find them. Both issues have been corrected in v0.36d. Download it from the Front-Ends section.

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