Updated: News roundup

Saturday, 25 March, 2006 12:00

New website: Atlas Game Packs repository

This is THE THING for people who want to play Saturn homebrew. There are over 80 Atlas Game Packs available for download, with screenshot, thumbnail, short description and further info. Most people will not know most of the demos and games there, simply because noone would have ever burned 80 CDs to try them out.

Make your selection, download the AGPs you like and create your very own Saturn compilation using Atlas Creator! Just put the AGPs into the AGP subfolder of Atlas Creator and hit MakeIso.bat. It's really that simple!

And by the way: it turns you Saturn into a retro gaming jukebox. I've spent much time to create all these AGPs, the screenshots, the descriptions and stuff and I've even recorded some very nice and popular Mega Drive game tunes which are played back in the main menu.

I've already burned 3 different discs for my personal use, hehe. (of course everything fit's on just two CDs, the third one is my latests The Rockin'-B All Stars).

New release: Atlas Creator

People already know the bootloader Atlas and that it can be used to create Saturn CDs (with up to 50 games on, presented with some nice menu) like The Rockin'-B All Stars and C4 2005 CD. But it's been rather difficult to create those discs, for the average user.

Now Atlas Creator is out for Windows and MacOS X (and *nix, as it comes with source). It introduces the concept of Atlas Game Packs which is similar to SBI files for Dreamcast. The tool can create Atlas Game Packs and from a collection of such AGPs, it can create Saturn CD images with one or multiple games on and it can even create a HTML website showing all details of your AGP collection. This feature is used to create the Atlas Game Packs website.

Included in the distribution are 4 skins/themes which effect the look of the main Atlas menu on Saturn. Two of them have been created by Arnold (thanks a lot!), one is MacOS X like and the fourth one is that of The Rockin'-B All Stars.

The Rockin'-B All Stars updated!

The Rockin'-B All Stars has finally been updated. This release features all those many improvements that have been applied to a couple of projects as well as the latest game ported to Saturn.

updated: Save Game Manager (see the new screenshots guided help)

updated: Texture Coordinates (see the new screenshots)

updated: Rockin'-VR

updated: Atlas

new: Tic Tac Toe (new screenshots, too)

This means high resolution display (640x480 instead of 352x224), which looks really cool!

First monetary donation received!

It's just one dollar (0.86 EUR), but I was happy anyways :-) . Thanks Amon for being the first and for your Saturn homebrew as well.

Recent progress summary:

The Tic Tac Toe game is finally complete. Arnold did some nice additions like a title screen and most importandly a nice sprite cursor. He also exchanged some sounds and images so that it's now in a very cool "Terminator" theme. Have a look on the updated screenshots by yourself.

Again, another hand full of new functions has been added to the SGL replacement project. Function slScrAutoDisp has been improved. It's the most difficult function currently available in the project and is still not absolutely complete. But it already computes VDP2 VRAM cycle patterns good enough to make things work for a lot of applications. For the first time, I tried using it for one of my emulators, too. It's close to be useable and I can't wait to let my other projects take advantage of it.

The SNES emulator for Saturn has been worked on, too, but with little results yet. I upgraded to the newest KPIT GNUSH v0601 compiler, which decreased the binary size significantly. On special request, I ported the older snes9x source code 1.41-1, too, since it's been reported to work with some games, which don't run anymore in the latest windows version 1.43. After this, I could remove two minor bugs, which finally improved compatibility. The funny thing is: now the game not working in the latest windows version of snes9x is instead working in both versions of my Saturn port, so I can continue with version 1.43. This emu really pushes the limits in terms of RAM requirements and so progress requires some other additional things to come together. The SGL replacement can be considered being one of those things.