New VBA GX fork (2.3.0)

Discussion in 'Wii - Emulation and Homebrew' started by libertyernie, Sep 10, 2014.

  1. libertyernie
    OP

    libertyernie Advanced Member

    Newcomer
    90
    72
    Apr 6, 2011
    United States
    The last official version of VBA GX was 2.2.8 in July 2012. This version was released March 4, 2015, and is labeled as 2.3.2.

    Download: Dropbox or Mediafire

    Source code is on GitHub: https://github.com/libertyernie/vba-wii

    Major changes in 2.3.2:
    • 240p support added (NTSC and European RGB)
    • Wii U Pro Controller support
    • Borders of arbitrary size supported - loaded from PNG files (must be enabled in Emulation settings)
      • Known issue: pixels in the border must be the same size as pixels in the game - unless you want a tiny screen you're effectively limited to about 320x240.
    See the readme.txt for more information.

    Pokemon Silver on GBC with SGB border - stretched to full resolution (640x480):
    [​IMG]
    Same game, running at 2:1 pixel ratio (512x448):
    [​IMG]

    Changes in 2.3.1:
    • Super Game Boy border support
      • Borders can be loaded from (and are automatically saved to) PNG files
      • Any border loaded from the game itself will override the custom PNG border
    • Custom palette support from 2.2.8 restored
    • Option added to select Game Boy hardware (GB/SGB/GBC/auto)
    • Fixed pixel ratio mode added
      • Overrides zoom and aspect ratio settings
      • To squish the picture so it appears correctly on a 16:9 TV, you can open
        the settings.xml file and add 10 to the gbFixed/gbaFixed value. However,
        setting your TV to 4:3 mode will yield a better picture.
    • Real-time clock fixes for GB/GBC games, including Pok√©mon G/S/C
      • RTC data in save file stored as little-endian
      • Option added for UTC offset in the main menu (only required if you use the
        same SRAM on other, time-zone-aware platforms)
    • New option for selecting "sharp" or "soft" filtering settings
      • "Sharp" was the default for 480p, "soft" was the default for 480i
    Changes in 2.3.0:
    • VBA-M core updated to r1231
    • Tiled rendering used for GBA games (new VBA-M feature, originally from RetroArch) - provides a major speed boost!
    • I merged the changes from cebolleto's version (http://gbatemp.net/threads/snes9xgx-fceugx-and-vbagx-with-screenshots-support.366990/). See that thread for details.
    • New options available:
      • Disable the " Auto" string being appended to save files
      • Disable frameskip entirely on GBA (I like to turn this on in some games and keep it off in others.)
    • Keyboard fixed (from libwiigui r56)
    • GUI prompt is now purple instead of green (button colors more intuitive)
    • Goomba and Goomba Color ROM support (using my code from here: http://gbatemp.net/threads/goomba-save-manager-export-replace-goomba-sram.364693/)
      • Any Game Boy ROM stored within a Goomba ROM can be loaded "natively" in the Game Boy (Color) emulator (or the Goomba ROM can be loaded as GBA)
      • Game Boy SRAM stored within Goomba SRAM is loaded and saved correctly
      • I put this in because I keep several GBC games on by GBA flash card, and I like to use the same save file no matter what device I'm using.
    • Custom controls available for Kid Dracula (see this video)
    --------------------

    The biggest new "feature" since 2.2.8 is that for GBA games, it's now using the tiled rendering method from RetroArch. (It's also made its way to VBA-M upstream, but RetroArch had a couple of fixes I needed to apply as well.)

    What this means:
    1. GBA games are going to run a lot more smoothly. (They'll usually still have some frameskip, though.)
    2. If you're already using RetroArch to play GBA games, just keep doing that - this probably won't help you, unless you need something specific that VBA GX has.


    That video is showing the new version - here's a video of the old version. You can kind of tell that the game's running more smoothly if you play them side by side, but it's definitely noticeable in person.
     
    NoNAND, Darkyose, zantzue and 22 others like this.


  2. duffmmann

    duffmmann GBAtemp Psycho!

    Member
    3,643
    1,479
    Mar 11, 2009
    United States
    Nice! Thanks much for this, I was just noticing too much lag when I was playing one of my pokemon rom hacks on VBA GX on my Wii the other day.
     
  3. MaeseJesus

    MaeseJesus GBAtemp Regular

    Member
    226
    39
    Apr 3, 2013
    Amazing! I have to try this, because I remember some games working a little better here than in Retroarch (But jut a few titles, like FF: Dawn of Souls for example; the core in RA works really nice with most of the games I tried).

    But I would want to ask, is this a total replacement of the 2.2.8 version, or should I have both in the SD just in case?

    Also the custom controls seem very interesting to use. Good Work.
     
  4. nakata6790

    nakata6790 True Player

    Member
    885
    314
    Sep 17, 2009
    Greece
    That's AWESOME!!

    I had to juggle between Wiimednafen and Retroarch for GBA games until now.
    If this brings the best of both worlds together, it rocks.

    Silly question: could you also include the cover support from this mod as well?
     
    Margen67, Hielkenator and Magnus87 like this.
  5. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,191
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle
    Do you think Snes9x GX will get a mod like this one of these days (and get a speed up for those games like Kirby's Dreamland 3)? Awesome work, man, keep it up! :D :D
     
    Margen67 and Hielkenator like this.
  6. nakata6790

    nakata6790 True Player

    Member
    885
    314
    Sep 17, 2009
    Greece
    Just tested this. Really improved speed on ''demanding'' GBA games like Asterix XXL, V-Rally 3, Duke Nukem 3d, Castlevania COTM that stuttered on previous VBA GX. The first 3 even stutter on RA GBA core as well, while here they are smoother. I also really like the auto palettes in GB games like Street Fighter II, Donkey Kong, DK Land, etc.
    HOWEVER, games like Golden Sun 2, Mother 3 etc run smoother on RA GBA core. The colors are better too. Moto Racer GBA also stutters here (only WiiMednafen has this relatively smooth).

    Personally, i had best picture results (4.3 Wii, on a CRT with SCART) with these video settings on VBA GX 2.30: aspect ratio: partial stretch, height 66%, width 75% and filtered.

    I like the way you think :P
    A standalone SNES 9X GX with the speed improvements of RA's SNES 9X Next would be neat.
     
    Hielkenator and the_randomizer like this.
  7. ShadowOne333

    ShadowOne333 GBAtemp Guru

    Member
    6,855
    4,347
    Jan 17, 2013
    Mexico
    I got one but very important question...
    Will Golden Sun 2 run without that much frameskip (lag) in this update? :O
     
  8. littlecubba

    littlecubba Advanced Member

    Newcomer
    67
    6
    Jan 12, 2009
    i enjoy using Retro-Arch for some things, but i have always prefered standalone's
    :bow: Thank You:bow:
    for taking your time and bringing joy back to our standalone lifes​
     
  9. ShadowOne333

    ShadowOne333 GBAtemp Guru

    Member
    6,855
    4,347
    Jan 17, 2013
    Mexico
    Can you explain that part a little bit more?
    Is that something like using GBC bios to colorize some GB games or something similar?

    EDIT:
    I just tested this out and works wonderful :)
    Although some games as Golden Sun 2 and Pokemon Emerald still have lag due to the Frameskip, but if you disable it they run quite good.

    Only important thing left to do I think is to work on the audio of those games without the frameskipping, so they don't sound so crisp and slow sometimes.

    Wonderful work!
    THANK YOU!
    I can now play all my library without that nag of the frameskip :D
     
  10. SuperrSonic

    SuperrSonic GBAtemp Advanced Fan

    Member
    662
    220
    Dec 9, 2011
    It's nice someone finally did this, it's still missing one of two ways of getting the square pixels to show correctly on the Wii. To me the zoom option was always kinda pointless I don't think you need more than three screen layouts for GBA and that's a 2x unfiltered, upscaled to fit filtered and if a widescreen TV is available 3x unfiltered.

    Goomba/Color is a GB/C emulator for GBA, the emu, the rom and the save are stored in one file. What the features do is let you load it 'natively' by using the GB part of VBAGX or load it with twice the emulation with the GBA part of VBAGX.

    I just read the thing, I don't know how the switching works in the emu directly.
     
  11. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,191
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle

    That, and if it gets rid of the infamous libogc tinny menu open/close audio glitch, then it'd be golden :P Snes9x Next is a very well optimized emulator, as it uses no frame skip whatsoever. If someone ported the changes to GX, then people would know the glory that is Snes9x Next :D
     
    Hielkenator likes this.
  12. ShadowOne333

    ShadowOne333 GBAtemp Guru

    Member
    6,855
    4,347
    Jan 17, 2013
    Mexico
    Oh god turning off frameskip feels so good...
    If an audio fix is added, this thing will be PERFECT in my eyes :D
     
    Hielkenator and the_randomizer like this.
  13. sabandellos

    sabandellos Advanced Member

    Newcomer
    90
    12
    May 28, 2010
    OMG!!!!
    Thanks a lot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    :bow:
     
    Hielkenator likes this.
  14. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,191
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle

    I assume it's comparable to the RetroArch Wii version? If so, and it sounds like it is, the same should be done to Snes9x GX :D I hate to say it, but frameskip sucks :P
     
    Hielkenator likes this.
  15. nakata6790

    nakata6790 True Player

    Member
    885
    314
    Sep 17, 2009
    Greece
    I just noticed that screenshot support is already included, duh. That's super nice! :)
    Also tested a couple of goomba roms i made. Man, this took me back on my DS M3 lite days.
    Please keep in mind that it must be smaller than 8MB in order to work properly. If you have many GB games, just separate them in packs. Goomba roms also work on RA GBA core.
     
  16. libertyernie
    OP

    libertyernie Advanced Member

    Newcomer
    90
    72
    Apr 6, 2011
    United States
    Might be a good idea. I don't know if I would be all that motivated, though - I don't play SNES games all that often, and most of the ones I do play are on my Wii U. (Notable exception: the BS Zelda games.)

    That would be a nice feature. Maybe I ought to look into the zooming-in code.

    I don't really know what's causing the audio to skip - IIRC it happens even with frameskip off.
     
    SuperrSonic and ShadowOne333 like this.
  17. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,191
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle

    Well, it was just a suggestion, nothing more, wasn't trying to make ya do it... Since Dborth abandoned it.
     
  18. daxtsu

    daxtsu GBAtemp Guru

    Member
    5,539
    3,929
    Jun 9, 2007
    Antarctica
    Would you perhaps consider adding FIX94's new libwupc? It allows for Wiis and Wii Us to support Wii U Pro Controllers in Wii/vWii homebrew applications. It's also extremely easy to use.

    http://gbatemp.net/threads/libwupc-...library-for-wii-homebrew-applications.371574/

    Edit: Perhaps consider waiting a bit, it seems to have issues with regular Wii remotes connecting, or at least I'm having issues with it.

    Edit 2: It was a mistake on my end. Wii remotes connect fine. The only caveat is the player LEDs won't change correctly (if a Wii remote is already connected, and a Pro Controller connects after that, both will have player 1's LED, since they're considered separate groups of controller "entities" by both libraries).
     
  19. Magnus87

    Magnus87 GBAtemp Regular

    Member
    215
    80
    Apr 28, 2013
    Argentina
    Thanks!

    Wii emulators need more updates :D

    is it possible port higan (AKA bsNES) to Wii?
     
  20. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,191
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle

    Wii isn't powerful enough, Snes9x Next is the best it can get, really.