We've got several new and (maybe) exciting features as something of an early Christmas. See changes.txt for full details, since it’s more practical to offer only the highlights.
First of all, the long project of rewriting the Windows UI is complete. The Cheat Search in particular might be a little on the raw side though. As such if you happen to come across things where the behavior isn’t quite as sane as it could be, or there appears to be a bug, please post it to the appropriately named sticky thread in the development forum.
Continuing with our Windows theme, I've posted the format of the valid.ext file generated by the Win32 UI on the dev forum. You can modify the file to include or exclude specific filetypes. If you are intending to make use of this feature you might want to remove the existing version of the file. I changed the code slightly to increase the ability to screen files.
Anomie has integrated a long-awaited sprite patch, implementing a feature of the SNES called "Range-Time Over". This feature has had a history of problems, so I'm really glad anomie found an implementation that works so well. Bugs fixed by this include two scenes in Final Fantasy 3 and some of the battle graphics, as well as the Tiny Toons title screen. Tiny Toons clipped a few blocks of the title on a SNES, but not on the emulator; Snes9x now clips those, too. Because of this you may see an occasional sprite disappearance, but before you report a bug, consider what the SNES really did.
As a result of anomie's work, a few tests by Overload, and a short implementation by me, we now pass the infamous Electronic test. Hurrah!
anomie also fixed the read behavior for vram. This fixes the intro for Moryo Senki Madara 2.
The most hyped feature (though range-time over is probably the most important) is Andreas Naive's cracking of the S-DD1 decompression algorithm. The feat is truly impressive. Idealistically, this is great news because it's another victory we thought we'd never win. Pragmatically, people with decently fast machines no longer need to deal with graphics packs. Consult your port's documents for the important usage details. In fact, read all of the documentation, because you will more than likely learn new things. In any case, salute Andreas for he's earned it.
In other news, the DSP-1, SuperFx, and SA-1 are all improved. The latter two no longer save sram for games that didn't use a battery and the DSP-1 is more accurate now. The next improvements (in future versions) should fix the graphics glitches as well. There’s only a handful of ops left, and all but one deals directly with the rendering.
Finally, we’ve added a secret Windows-only feature. In order to minimize the chances of spoiling the fun we've obfuscated the source, and we'd appreciate it if you didn't decode it just to tell people the details of the feature. Rather, it's a bit of a game for me. Board regulars will have most likely have an advantage, especially depending on what is in the folder with their new Snes9x. In the event no one gets it without looking at the source, I'll taunt you all and offer some new hints.
Along with the release, I have some housekeeping that needs to be public.
First, we are looking for someone both willing and able to maintain the Glide code. The current development staff is not able to maintain the mode. We will revaluate Glide support in a few months if we are not able to maintain the mode.
Second, and more importantly, we’d like to clarify the Snes9x license. It has come to our attention that several people have auctioned off Snes9x and ROMs on Ebay. Quite aside from the fact that selling ROMs is almost certainly illegal in any jurisdiction, it is a violation of the license to sell Snes9x. Please read and respect the license, and report anyone trying to scam money out of people for Snes9x. Thank you.
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