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 Post subject: Interesting ALG project I'm working on....
PostPosted: Sun Feb 05, 2006 8:42 am 
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The whole world (or should I say emulation community) has gone lightgun crazy again. Perhaps because of this Digital Leisure released the last two officially released alg games, Space Pirates and Fast Draw Showdown. As I looked at the file sizes I realized that with some trimming, the entire alg collection of pc games could fit (and actually be playable) on a single layer dvd disc. Which brings me to my latest mini project.

ALG Fe / ALG Tweak Wizard.

What it is mainly is a wizard to copy all the alg games to a directory on your harddrive along with a mini "autolaunch" fe ready for burning. It also does some interesting things including but not limited to:

The ability to change the default crosshair/reload cursors to something more pleasing to the eye (including invisible cursors.)

The ability to change the bullet graphics (including a version of the default graphics that have been cleaned up to remove the ugly white flak around the edges).

The ability to change the default shot/reload sounds, which might prove useful for crime patrol and drug wars, which don't seem to have very fitting sounds.

The ability to bypass all those non-authentic menu screens within the game and replace said navigation with a start key (the 1 key) and dip settings passed to the fe (for easy or hard selections).

Replacement continue and start videos so when you use the above hack "press start to begin" or "press start to continue" it will replace those ugly in-game buttons.

A custom wrapper for each game that manages all the above hacks and also add things like one press exit (escape) and auto-fullscreen mode.

A fe that not only acts as a autolaunch menu but doubles as a fake emulator so you can launch all these games from within any traditional front end that supports custom command line options. (Virtually all of them).

The option to delete all the trailers included on each disc (except the one for the game in question of course). If you do this, all the games will fit on a single dvd and even have room to spare for the yet unreleased "shootout at old tuscon" prototype.


The fe itself is essentially done. I started on the wizard tonight and will be done soon. The only things holding me up at this point are the rest of the games getting here (on order) and adobe premiere crapping out on me.

Once I get premire working and the rest of the games in, I can make some nice start/continue screens for each game and start buttoning things up.

I will post pics as things develop a little more.

Aaaaaanyway. If anyone has any suggestions or requests for this upcoming app please let me know now while it'll be easy to change things.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 6:01 pm 
DAPHNE Creator
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I'm a little unclear about something. Would you still be using Digital Leisure's "engine" to play the games?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 6:09 pm 
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For now, yes.

I intend to reverse engineer a couple of them and fix errors though.

The Last Bounty Hunter, Crime Patrol and Drag Wars all have a glitch where they only go through attract mode once. So that needs fixed.


If I knew anything about amiga programming I'd just extract the targeting and frame data from the actual arcade roms. I looked into it and realized I'm completely lost though. It's a shame considering how small the roms are. It'd probably be a sinch to write a simulator that uses them.


Last edited by HowardC on Wed Feb 08, 2006 6:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 6:11 pm 
DAPHNE Creator
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HowardC wrote:
It's a same considering how small the roms are. It'd probably be a sinch to write a simulator that uses them.


Eh? Just how small are they? I thought they were encrypted and couldn't be disassembled.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2006 6:17 pm 
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Well that's true, but everything can be decompiled at a certain level.


The roms are only like 1 k a file. Around 5-10 "pages" each.

Even though it's compiled you can sorta see the code.

First rom genrally has some actual code at the top (I'm assuming for the scoring, hud and splotch animations) and the rest appears to be frame/targeting data. And then on soem of them there is a second rom file that has additional targeting data.

Of course I'm just guessing here, it's already assembled so a person really can't tell.

Even digital leisure and the new company that makes the six gun select cabs appear to have written their own code from scratch so I suppose it is harder than it looks. :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2006 7:45 pm 
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Actually, Digital Leisure did the programming for the Six Gun Select machines (from GlobalVR) as well. They clearly did a much nicer job on the arcade version than on their home stuff.

I recently asked Digital Leisure if the arcade version of the software was available for purchase, or if they were planning on releasing "arcade authentic" versions of the ALG games (kind of like they did with Dragon's Lair). They said there were no plans to do so at the moment, but they wouldn't rule it out.

CJW


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:33 pm 
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Yes I'm aware of this.

My guess is they will never release "arcade authentic" versions for that very reason. The six gun cabs run on a regular pc. If they were to release games that ran on the pc that were arcade authentic then piracy would run rampant. Well maybe not, but I'm sure that global vr would be rather upset.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:39 pm 
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Also considerng the fact that they recently released fastdraw and space pirates using that same horrible mad dog engine they wrote suggests that they aren't willing to invest the time to do it anyway.

(If they weren't released yet, why wouldn't they go back and base the engine on the globalvr stuff they just finished?)


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