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Super Nintendo/Super Famicom emulator for the DSTWO
C C++ Objective-C
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CATSFC
sdk-modifications sdk-modifications: Fix totally broken short-file-name (SFN) alias sup…
source Release 1.36.
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Makefile Reimplement grouped multipart cheat codes on top of Snes9x's cheat data.
README.md Release 1.36.
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README.md

CATSFC version 1.36, 2013-06-16

A Super Nintendo emulator for the Supercard DSTWO.

Based on:

  • Snes9x 1.43, by the Snes9x team (with research by the ZSNES folks, anomie, zsKnight, etc.)
  • NDSSFC 1.06, by the Supercard team (porting to the MIPS processor)
  • BAGSFC, by BassAceGold (improving over NDSSFC)
  • CATSFC, by ShadauxCat and Nebuleon (improving over BAGSFC)

Contains:

  • Language files written by the GBAtemp community: Dutch by Aeter, French by Nebuleon, German by SignZ, Portuguese (Brazilian) by Diego Liberal, Spanish by Boriar
  • Language files written by GitHub users: Italian by alexinfurs

Installing

(If you got the source code and want to compile it, see the Compiling section at the end of the file.)

To install the plugin to your storage card, copy catsfc.plg, catsfc.ini and catsfc.bmp from the release archive to the card's _dstwoplug directory. Then, copy the CATSFC subdirectory to the root of the card.

Cheats

The format accepted by the "Load a cheat file" function is equivalent to the old format used in Mightymo's BSNES Cheat Code Pack.

  1. Download the BSNES Cheat Code Pack at http://www.mightymo.net/downloads.html. It will be a zip archive.
  2. Open the zip file, with WinZip, WinRAR or the built-in zip extension in the operating system on your computer.
  3. In the zip file, open the folder called BSNES Cheat Code Pack, then the one called BSNES v0.51-0.74 Cheat Code Pack.
  4. Open your storage card's CATSFC folder, then descend into gamecht.
  5. Drag the cheat code files from the zip archive to the card's gamecht folder.

To add cheats to the menu in a game, first load the game, then use the Cheats menu's "Load a cheat file" option.

Frame skipping

In the Video & audio menu, the Frame skipping option allows you to select a number of frames to skip between rendered frames.

As of version 1.29, the default is - (Keep up with the game). For most games, this setting keeps video and audio fluid, without the sudden slowdowns of previous versions when many sprites fill the screen. The DS controller buttons are also responsive at this setting.

For some games, you may need to adjust frame skipping.

  • If a game runs at 5 frames per second, like Yoshi's Island, Kirby Super Star, Star Fox or Super Mario RPG, setting frame skipping to 1 will allow you to jump, move or shoot at the right times.
  • If you want to show more frames per second in a game that already shows 20, setting frame skipping to 1 or 0 will cause more frames to appear, but your DS button input may stop responding for 2 entire seconds every so often. The audio may also be stretched. (This is similar to NDSGBA.)
  • Setting this to 10 will skip 10 frames and render one, but this will severely desynchronise the audio. You will also find yourself unable to perform actions during the correct frame with the DS buttons. It is advised to set frame skipping to the lowest value with which you can play a game.

Fluidity

Fluidity is an option you can find under the Video & audio menu in a game. By default, video fluidity is preferred over audio fluidity in games.

  • Preferring video fluidity makes audio skip certain notes, up to 23 milliseconds, in order to render more video. In many games, this difference is not audible, but you may hear certain audio glitches if a game depends highly on timing for its audio. Use this option if you want to play games that require fluid imagery more than precise audio emulation. You can also use this option when watching game introductions, endings and cutscenes.
  • Preferring audio fluidity makes video skip certain images, up to 46 milliseconds, in order to render audio closer to 32,000 times per second. Use this option if you want to play games mainly for their soundtracks, or in a game's sound test mode. You can also use this option to experiment with the green berry glitch in Super Mario World that makes TIME go over and under 100 units constantly and makes the music play very fast.

Hotkeys

You can set buttons to press to perform certain actions. For each action, there is a global hotkey and a game-specific override hotkey. You might, for example, want to have the R button bound to Temporary fast-forward, but a specific game uses R for something important. In that case, you can set the global hotkey to R and make an override with X for that game.

Hotkeys are sent to the current game as well as to their corresponding action. The criterion for a hotkey is met when at least all of its buttons are held. Additional keys are sent to the game and can trigger another hotkey. For example, setting a hotkey to L and another to R+X, then pressing L+R+X+Y will trigger both and send L+R+X+Y to the game.

Available actions are:

  • Go to main menu. In addition to tapping the Touch Screen to return to the main menu, you can set a hotkey to do the same.
  • Temporary fast-forward. While this hotkey is held, the fast-forward option will be forced on.
  • Toggle sound. Each time this hotkey is held, the sound will be disabled if it's currently enabled, and vice-versa.
  • Save state #1. Each time this hotkey is held, saved state #1 will be written, without confirmation if it exists.
  • Load state #1. Each time this hotkey is held, saved state #1 will be loaded.
  • Toggle full-screen. Each time this hotkey is held:
    • If the current display mode is a full-screen mode, then the display mode is set to 3 (Middle, square pixels) and the top and bottom will be cut off.
    • If the current display mode is not a full-screen mode, then the display mode is set to 4 (Entire screen, smoothed).

The font

The font used by CATSFC is similar to the Pictochat font. To modify it, see source/font/README.txt.

Translations

Translations for CATSFC may be submitted to the author(s) under many forms, one of which is the Github pull request. To complete a translation, you will need to do the following:

  • Open CATSFC/system/language.msg.
  • Copy what's between STARTENGLISH and ENDENGLISH and paste it at the end of the file.
  • Change the tags. For example, if you want to translate to Japanese, the tags will become STARTJAPANESE and ENDJAPANESE.
  • Translate each of the messages, using the lines starting with #MSG_ as a guide to the context in which the messages will be used.

If you are not comfortable editing C code, or cannot compile CATSFC after your changes, you may instead test your translation in the English block and submit it. That allows you to look for message length issues and to align the option names and values to your liking with spaces.

If you wish to also hook your language into the user interface, you will need to do the following:

  • Edit source/nds/message.h. Find enum LANGUAGE and add the name of your language there. For the example of Japanese, you would add this at the end of the list: , JAPANESE
  • Still in source/nds/message.h, just below enum LANGUAGE, you will find extern char* lang[ some number ]. Add 1 to that number.
  • Edit source/nds/gui.c. Find char *lang[ some number ] =. Add the name of your language, in the language itself. For the example of Japanese, you would add this at the end of the list: , "日本語"
  • Still in source/nds/gui.c, find char* language_options[], which is below the language names. Add an entry similar to the others, with the last number plus 1. For example, if the last entry is , (char *) &lang[7], yours would be , (char *) &lang[8].
  • Still in source/nds/gui.c, find case CHINESE_SIMPLIFIED. Copy the lines starting at the case and ending with break, inclusively. Paste them before the }. Change the language name and tags. For the example of Japanese, you would use: case JAPANESE: strcpy(start, "STARTJAPANESE"); strcpy(end, "ENDJAPANESE"); break;

Compile again, copy the plugin and your new language.msg to your card under CATSFC/system, and you can now select your new language in CATSFC!

Compiling

Compiling CATSFC is best done on Linux. Make sure you have access to a Linux system to perform these steps.

The DS2 SDK

To compile CATSFC, you need to have the Supercard team's DS2 SDK. The Makefile expects it at /opt/ds2sdk, but you can move it anywhere, provided that you update the Makefile's DS2SDKPATH variable to point to it.

For best results, download version 0.13 of the DS2 SDK, which will have the MIPS compiler (gcc), extract it to /opt/ds2sdk, follow the instructions, then download version 1.2 of the DS2 SDK and extract its files into opt/ds2sdk, overwriting version 0.13.

Additionally, you will need to add the updated zlib, DMA (Direct Memory Access) and filesystem access routines provided by BassAceGold and recompile libds2a.a. To do this:

sudo rm -r /opt/ds2sdk/libsrc/{console,core,fs,key,zlib,Makefile} /opt/ds2sdk/include sudo cp -r sdk-modifications/{libsrc,include} /opt/ds2sdk sudo chmod -R 600 /opt/ds2sdk/{libsrc,include} sudo chmod -R a+rX /opt/ds2sdk/{libsrc,include} cd /opt/ds2sdk/libsrc sudo rm libds2a.a ../lib/libds2a.a sudo make

The MIPS compiler (gcc)

You also need the MIPS compiler from the DS2 SDK. The Makefile expects it at /opt/mipsel-4.1.2-nopic, but you can move it anywhere, provided that you update the Makefile's CROSS variable to point to it.

Making the plugin

To make the plugin, catsfc.plg, use the cd command to change to the directory containing your copy of the CATSFC source, then type make clean; make. catsfc.plg should appear in the same directory.

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