Homebrew Question Official Gamecube ports on Switch

dotmehdi

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Hey everyone,

I'm a complete noob when it comes to understand how softwares and homebrew works on our hacked consoles, but I was wondering something :
- The WiiU is able to run a complete virtual Wii system (the vWii) thanks to Nintendo, but I did not understand if this system was entirely emulated or if it was running (at least partially) from a chipset inside the console (like Sony did for their first revision of the Playstation 2 with the PSX games),
- If it's only a software setup, it means that it's also possible for Nintendo to run such a concept on the Switch so that they can sell Gamecube oldies on the eShop right ?
- Assuming they would do that, would it be possible to reverse-ingeneer this system and make injectors for any Gamecube titles like we did with the vWii ?
- I know that the gap between WiiU and Wii is way smaller than the one between the Switch and all its predecessor : the console is using a commonly-know tegra chip, their OS is made completely differently than older ones etc.
- I suppose that if all this works thanks to a chipset inside the WiiU, it means that we won't see something similar on our Switch consoles.

I've been looking at the hacking scene since the firsts hacks on GameBoy Advance were online and I can't seem to explain why but it feels like the Switch and HOS are way more different than other consoles and OSes : in one way, it's easier for hackers to work on it, but on the other hand, we seem to reach easily the limits of the console itself. Maybe it's just a bad appreciation of the situation thought :ha:

Sorry for the long post (and for my bad english :unsure:) and thanks for everyone who will read this!
 

Rahkeesh

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Wii U is as "backwards compatible" with Wii as Wii was with Gamecube. It basically has equivalents of most of the Wii hardware, the Wii U CPU is powerPC based, etc. You'll have to get the details from someone else, but it relies heavily on Wii U specific hardware and cannot be just ported to any platform.

I wouldn't put it past Nintendo being able to make a working GC emulator for Switch but the path to doing so will be completely different. In the meantime we have Dolphin running on Switchroot and Lakka, and it could be ported to Horizon someday. m4wx has been doing some awesome work in this area with other 3D systems so it could happen someday.
 
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dotmehdi

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Wii U is as "backwards compatible" with Wii as Wii was with Gamecube. It basically has equivalents of most of the Wii hardware, the Wii U CPU is powerPC based, etc. You'll have to get the details from someone else, but it relies heavily on Wii U specific hardware and cannot be just ported to any platform.

Okey so that was I thinking about, this is way more than just emulation !
I think Nintendo will be more likely to release HD versions of their classic games than just an "incubated" title running on a specific software... No hope for making injectors then ! That was my dream haha, but I understand anyways !
 
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Andrezin0692

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vWii ran off of a chipset misilar to the wii, even tough the wiiu didnt support gamecube games, a hypervisor was made to run gc games on the vWii chipset, a hypervisor is not emulation, its more like redirecting cpu, gpu calls to run gc natively because it was very similar to the wii and was originaly backwards compatible. For the switch, a hypervisor is not possible, so you will have to emulate everything. Not to say it is impossible, because there are dolphin emulators for android switch that runs at 50fps with the system at full overclock. So i guess it maybe possible to get a decent emulation going eventualy. If a pro switch ever comes out and it gets hack eventually, and all the switch homebrew gets ported over, it will probably run it better with no or smaller overclocks. Other well known hypervisors are GBArunner2 to play gba games off of the DS mode in the 3ds...

--------------------- MERGED ---------------------------

What you may se are, ports from the cg/wii era, like zelda TP and WW HD, mario galaxy games , metroid trilogy and maybe pikmin.... they would be redone using the sourcecode to run native on the switch. Mario galaxy games got ported to the NVidia shield on the chinese market and it has very similar hardware to the switch, so maybe those versions will get ported officialy or by someone
 
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ThereAreFourNaan

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As stated above, technically it does seem possible for the Switch to run a Gamecube or Wii emulator at good speeds, although the only commercial products were running on the Shield TV, which is the same chipset as the switch but runs at higher clockspeeds. The CPU speeds in particular are much lower on Switch (1.02 GHz vs 1.9 GHz). Although if those run Wii games at full speed, I suppose it would be logical to assume that the Switch @ 1.02 GHz may well be able to do Gamecube fine even if it struggled with the Wii. There's also an extra complication in that the Shield runs Android, while the Switch allows lower level access to hardware as I understand it.

I do also agree though that they're more likely to do native ports vs emulation. But they don't seem to be in a hurry to do many - and the ports they do may be enhanced (ala Wind Waker HD) rather than straight conversions. That way they can plausibly charge full price for them.
 

SeongGino

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It's already been said before, but if you really want to see GameCube on Switch via homebrew, then don't expect it in the next couple of years until someone can make one made specifically for the Switch from scratch. Dolphin is not a good fit for lowly ARM-based platforms, like the Switch, and would basically necessitate starting from scratch if you want to make something specifically for it - which is more or less what Nintendo/NVIDIA Lightspeed(?) does to a certain extent using bits and pieces of Dolphin code inside their SHIELD TV ports to fill in the blanks they have yet to develop.

Will it happen officially? Eh, maybe; depends all on if they further develop that hybrid-emulation core they have to bring it to Switch. However, don't be surprised if it comes out on a game-specific basis and has low compatibility with the greater library of GameCube games.
Will it happen unofficially? Well, m4xw sure has made his thoughts clear that he has no intention of doing it himself. And we don't even have a fullspeed N64 emulator yet that runs most games perfectly without some hitching (despite having Dreamcast emulation fairly down pat, dunno how that works-), so I wouldn't expect it to happen in the Switch's retail lifespan at least.
 

Stwert

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Hah the Dreamcast CPU is Arm7. No wonder it runs so well on Switch.


Wasn’t the Dreamcast CPU a Hitachi SH-4, rather than a full on ARM chip?
I could be very wrong of course, that’s just off the top of my head and it’s been many, many years since I’ve looked at the Dreamcast architecture.

If memory serves, the SH-4 was a precursor to the modern ARM chips, much of the Super-H instruction set being adapted and used in the following ARM processors. Again, could be wrong :P
 
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dotmehdi

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Honestly I'm not very optimistic about the future of Gamecube games running on Switch via emulation, which is why I thought it would be better running a "vWii" from Nintendo and hacking it. But since this only works on the WiiU because of it's hardware, I think we will only have to count on Nintendo to remaster some of our favorite classics in Switch titles. The Nintendo Switch can already run a tons of emulators either via RetroArch or Lakka and Android, and that's more that we could ever have expected from a portable console. Maybe the next gen will be performant enough so that we can run Dolphin as good as it is on my Pixel 3 ! :P
 

chaoskagami

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Also it matters little since I don't believe ARM(32-bit) to aarch64 (what the Switch has) is that simple; otherwise, we'd have DS emulation at fullspeed easy by now.

You would be correct. Honestly, the number one mistake people tend to make is assuming aarch64 is just 64-bit arm. It's not. aarch64 has a very large number of differences and is even missing a few instructions that arm has. It also doesn't help that the DS has two ancient ARM processors (not arm11, but arm7 and arm5) that have to be synchronized.

Wasn’t the Dreamcast CPU a Hitachi SH-4, rather than a full on ARM chip?
I could be very wrong of course, that’s just off the top of my head and it’s been many, many years since I’ve looked at the Dreamcast architecture.

If memory serves, the SH-4 was a precursor to the modern ARM chips, much of the Super-H instruction set being adapted and used in the following ARM processors. Again, could be wrong :P

Yes. The Dreamcast was a SH-4. As far as I know, SEGA hasn't used ARM chips, only Super-H chips.

Also, ARM is...not really related to Super-H. More to the point, ARM was created first in the '80s. SuperH was developed in the '90s. So no, SH is not the precursor to ARM. Super-H does share some superficial similarities to the thumb instruction set though and they're both RISC architectures.
 
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catlover007

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there's ARM7 chip in the dreamcast, but it's only used as a DSP, i.e. mostly for producing audio. Otherwise it's true what was previously stated, the main processor of the dreamcast is a hitachi sh processor.

otherwise fullspeed GC or Wii games on switch (beyond what's currently possible) would be a small wonder.

Also it matters little since I don't believe ARM(32-bit) to aarch64 (what the Switch has) is that simple; otherwise, we'd have DS emulation at fullspeed easy by now.
You would be correct. Honestly, the number one mistake people tend to make is assuming aarch64 is just 64-bit arm. It's not. aarch64 has a very large number of differences and is even missing a few instructions that arm has. It also doesn't help that the DS has two ancient ARM processors (not arm11, but arm7 and arm5) that have to be synchronized.
that's true, but we're getting there ^^
 
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chaoskagami

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otherwise fullspeed GC or Wii games on switch (beyond what's currently possible) would be a small wonder.

At very least, no matter how much you optimize Dolphin it's not going to be good enough for full speed emulation and it'll never run on Horizon. IPC has too much overhead for Gamecube emulation to be viable compared to Linux. The ishiiruka fork only works for a few games. Dolphin tries to be accurate at the expense of more overhead, and that's not going to work on the Switch.

that's true, but we're getting there ^^

Eh, DS emulation is more or less a matter of "when" rather than "if". Frankly, I'm just happy that melonDS is killing DeSmuMe. DeSmuMe's codebase is a complete mess and really has not aged well.

It's just more complicated than people like to make it sound, that's all. There's a reason why there are so few DS emulators.
 
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