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April Fools! Please do not use this release for anything serious, it's wildly incompatible—just a joke..!

We understand that assembly is a fairly dry and old-school language. We understand that it does not necessarily appeal to the modern programmer (and their socks) anymore.

Therefore, we have decided to experiment and shake up the instruction syntax a little bit. UTF-8 characters are now accepted as input, a handful of instructions have been renamed—as have been the registers, and more! 👀 We invite you to check out the new documentation for the full list of changes~

Pwease be warned that the new syntax is a teeny tiny bit expewimental, and so any ewwows should be wepowted to youw neawest /dev/null! ^w^

🐈

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Deprecated:

  • SET for mutable definitions is deprecated; use =

Added:

  • Bash completion scripts for rgbasm, rgblink, rgbfix, and rgbgfx!
  • RGBFIX won't warn when overwriting a byte with the same value
  • rgbfix -O to silence all "overwriting non-zero byte" warnings
  • rgblink -S "scrambles" bank assignments to help find broken assumptions in your code
  • Unindented macro invocations will be hinted at when encountered
  • -Wnumeric-string=0|1|2 warns about use of strings as numbers
  • Compound assignment for variables (e.g. DEF x += 1 for DEF x = x + 1)
  • ! negates condition codes z/nz/c/nc
  • Allow _ in gfx literals, e.g. `0123_3210

Updated:

  • Zsh completions synced with RGBDS changes
  • rgbfix -m MBC3+TIMER implies BATTERY, warning if not specified
  • Symbol interpolation is now more prominently described
  • -Wtruncation can be made less strict; use -Wtruncation=1 for more lax behavior

Fixed:

  • rgbfix -m MBC3+TIMER+BATTERY didn't work
  • LOAD offset wasn't reset when switching sections
  • PUSHS inside UNION should work as expected
  • Syntax errors after the first one were silenced
  • Some syntax errors could break parsing
  • Some invalid local labels could be defined
  • Incorrect error text when merging misaligned sections
  • Fixed-point formatting was slightly imprecise
  • STRFMT documentation was cut in the middle
  • Wrong rgbfix -m help text
  • Man page formatting and grammar blunders
  • Internal code cleanup
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Don't forget to check out our docs for more details on the updated functionality!

Added:

  • RGBFIX now supports the homebrew TPP1 mapper! (The emulators BGB 1.5.9 and SameBoy 0.14.3 do too)
  • New \<10> and \<num_sym> macro arg syntaxes
  • SIZEOF("section") and STARTOF("section")
  • CHARLEN and CHARSUB for working with charmap output units
  • OPT L, OPT W, and OPT h
  • REDEF EQU
  • Linker scripts can use character escapes in section names ("\n \r \t \" \\")
  • RGBFIX now reports when it's overwriting non-zero header bytes, helpful for spotting mistakes (thanks @GreenAndEievui!)
  • rgbfix -m help will list the accepted MBC names
  • rgbfix -m accepts $-prefixed hex literals

Changed:

  • Parentheses in macro args implicitly escape commas now, like C. For example, macro STRCAT("foo", "bar") used to be 2 arguments, now it's only one!
  • STRSUB and CHARSUB allow negative start positions, relative to the end of the string
  • STRSUB's second parameter can be omitted to read until the end of the string
  • A lot more errors are non-fatal now
  • Any constant expression equal for $FF00 can be substituted to $ff00 in ld [$ff00 + c], a and ld a, [$ff00 + c]; and arbitrary whitespace, line continuations, and block comments are allowed

Removed:

  • LOAD FRAGMENT had buggy behavior, and its use cases can be done differently

Fixed:

  • Symbols in some SECTION UNION/FRAGMENT could be missing from the .sym file
  • Interpolations could recurse infinitely outside of strings
  • ld hl, sp - <expr> was broken in 0.5.0 (workaround: ld hl, sp + -<expr>)
  • $ff00 + constant (or any symbol name starting with "c") would cause a syntax error since 0.4.2 (workarounds: ($ff00) + constant, constant + $ff00, or $ff00 + /**/ constant)
  • Fixed a lexer bug that could crash RGBASM on "piped" input files
  • jr could be incorrect within SECTION FRAGMENT
  • PUSHS didn't reset the section scope correctly (regression), and didn't save the LOAD state
  • REDEF EQUS had a few bugs
  • RGBFIX incorrectly parsed options on some platforms
  • RGBLINK should no longer leak memory
  • Fixed some compiler warnings, notably on 32-bit platforms and macOS
  • The source now uses _ISO_C11_SOURCE; this notably fixes building on FreeBSD (see #789 for more info)

Attention downstream packagers

An "annex" program, rgbobj, has been developed as an equivalent of objdump for RGBDS. It's not integrated with the rest of the codebase, as it's written in Rust. If you are distributing pre-built binaries, you may want to bundle it with RGBDS regardless.

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Don't forget to check out our docs for more details on the updated functionality!

Please welcome two new contributors, @Rangi42 and @dannye! Rangi did more than half of the work on this release—our biggest one yet!

Deprecated:

  • _PI wasn't useful, so it's deprecated now
  • PRINTT, PRINTV, PRINTF and PRINTI are obsoleted by the new PRINT/PRINTLN and STRFMT

Known issues:

  • .sym files miss some symbols from multiple SECTION UNIONs/FRAGMENTs (#809)

Added:

  • New MACRO <name> syntax for defining macros! The old syntax will still be supported for a couple versions, but may eventually be phased out.
  • New DEF <name> EQU/EQUS/SET/= ... syntax for defining constants! The old syntax will still be supported, but may eventually be phased out.
  • RGBFIX can now be used in pipelines! Example: rgblink -o - obj/header.o obj/game.o | rgbfix -v -p0xFF >bin/dinos_with_lasers.gb
  • {symbol} interpolation outside of strings, similar to macro args (differs from the pre-0.4.2 behavior!!)
  • __RGBDS_VERSION__ provides a complete version string
  • More complex format specifiers are now allowed in symbol interpolations
  • Anonymous labels
  • Environment var SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH can be used for reproducible builds
  • Underscores can be used in numeric literals (e.g. %1101_1110_1010_1101)
  • New string functions STRRIN, STRRPL and STRFMT
  • \# to get all of a macro's arguments
  • """Multi-line string literals"""
  • FOR blocks!
  • BREAK exits REPT and FOR early
  • POW and LOG fixed-point functions
  • ** exponent operator (for integers)
  • REDEF to redefine EQUS much more conveniently
  • RL has been reintroduced alongside RB and RW
  • LOAD UNION and LOAD FRAGMENT
  • Symbol interpolations now have their recursion depth capped as well

Changed:

  • Syntax errors will now be more verbose! Be careful that YMMV depending on the Bison version that RGBASM was compiled with.
  • Syntax errors are no longer fatal! If a line contains a syntax error, RGBASM will discard it and attempt to continue with the next line.
  • RGBFIX's -m now accepts MBC names
  • More symbols will be available in the .sym and .map files
  • ROM usgae stats are now included in the .map files
  • Interaction of quotes and macro args should be more intuitive
  • ds can now repeat patterns, not just a single byte
  • Global labels can now be indented, not just local ones
  • Trailing commas are allowed for most "list" directives, such as db
  • STRCAT can now concat any amount of strings
  • LOAD blocks cannot create ROM sections anymore (#576)
  • ROUND, FLOOR and CEIL fixed-point builtins were present but undocumented
  • Macro arguments can now be shifted by a negative amount, "un-shifting" them
  • Macro args can now be empty, though this causes a warning
  • Garbage characters in input will no longer attempt to be reported as UTF-8, instead reporting bytes
  • The lexer has been cleaned up somewhat, this should hopefully result in slightly improved performance

Removed:

  • GLOBAL and XDEF keywords (deprecated aliases of EXPORT)
  • Colon-less global labels
  • *-comments
  • rgbasm -v no longer prints the elapsed time (use time for that)
  • RGBASM incorrectly allowed omitting hl as the destination of ld hl, r16 and add hl, r16
  • RGBASM incorrectly allowed omitting the + in ld hl, sp + N

Fixed:

  • Enabled several optimizations that should improve performance, especially RGBASM
  • SECTION FRAGMENTs now respect their constraints at their respective beginnings, not as a whole
  • Line numbers could be incorrect on Windows
  • RGBASM will explicitly reject more than one input file, rather than silently ignore them
  • Macro args weren't ignored in block comments
  • Fixed a rare crash with unterminated REPT/FOR blocks
  • Fixed incorrect handling of text after MACRO, ENDM and ENDR tokens
  • Fixed several bugs in the lexer that tripped assertions (special thanks to @NieDzejkob for fuzzing RGBASM!)
  • Can't start a new section if another with the same name has been PUSHS'd
  • ds N, @ could produce incorrect results
  • ELIF and ELSE were allowed after ELSE
  • . was treated as a label
  • Performance of gbdiff.bash improved significantly
  • Defining an EQUS after referencing it is now an error
  • Passing -t and -O to RGBLINK generated an output too large
  • RGBASM will correctly report errors encountered when opening a file
  • There was actually still a way to overwrite builtin symbols, it's there no more
  • INCBIN "file",<start>[,<stop>] could leak memory in case of a certain error
  • __UTC_*__ were incorrectly declared as EQU instead of EQUS
  • gbz80(7) failed to mention alternatives to [hli] and [hld]
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when modifying a charmap that was on the pushc stack
  • Fixed expanding recurse EQUS "recurse" infinitely hanging RGBASM, no matter the max recursion depth (fixes a regression introduced by 0.4.2's new lexer)

Attention downstream packagers

The yacc dependency has been changed to GNU Bison! Our Makefile relies on bison -V to conditionally enable some features (src/check_bison_ver.sh) and our CMakeLists on the Bison CMake package, so both should be compatible with many versions, at least 3.0 (3.0.4 successfully tested). Please report breakage in our issue tracker.

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v0.5.0-rcCar

Pre-release
Pre-release

April Fools! Please don't actually use this version for anything serious, it's 99% incompatible...

Don't forget to check out our docs (particularly gbz80.7) for more details on the updated functionality!

Please welcome two new contributors, @Rangi42 and @dannye! Rangi did more than half of the work on this release—our biggest one yet!

Changes since v0.5.0-rc2:

  • New revised syntax solves the long-standing debate of whether to align instruction operands or not

Deprecated:

  • _PI wasn't useful, so it's deprecated now
  • PRINTT, PRINTV, PRINTF and PRINTI are obsoleted by the new PRINT/PRINTLN and STRFMT

Known issues:

  • Regression: Expanding recurse EQUS "recurse" or recurse EQUS "\{recurse\}" hangs rgbasm (#696)
  • .sym files miss some symbols from multiple SECTION UNIONs/FRAGMENTs (#809)

Added:

  • New MACRO <name> syntax for defining macros! The old syntax will still be supported for a couple versions, but may eventually be phased out.
  • RGBFIX can now be used in pipelines! Example: rgblink -o - obj/header.o obj/game.o | rgbfix -v -p0xFF >bin/dinos_with_lasers.gb
  • {symbol} interpolation outside of strings, similar to macro args (differs from the pre-0.4.2 behavior!!)
  • More complex format specifiers are now allowed in symbol interpolations
  • Anonymous labels
  • Environment var SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH can be used for reproducible builds
  • Underscores can be used in numeric literals (e.g. %1101_1110_1010_1101)
  • New string functions STRRIN, STRRPL and STRFMT
  • \# to get all of a macro's arguments
  • """Multi-line string literals"""
  • FOR blocks!
  • BREAK exits REPT and FOR early
  • POW and LOG fixed-point functions
  • ** exponent operator (for integers)
  • REDEF to redefine EQUS much more conveniently
  • RL has been reintroduced alongside RB and RW
  • LOAD UNION and LOAD FRAGMENT

Changed:

  • Syntax errors will now be more verbose! Be careful that YMMV depending on the Bison version that RGBASM was compiled with.
  • Syntax errors are no longer fatal! If a line contains a syntax error, RGBASM will discard it and attempt to continue with the next line.
  • RGBFIX's -m now accepts MBC names
  • More symbols will be available in the .sym and .map files
  • Slack totals are now included in the .map files
  • Interaction of quotes and macro args should be more intuitive
  • ds can now repeat patterns, not just a single byte
  • Global labels can now be indented, not just local ones
  • Trailing commas are allowed for most "list" directives, such as db
  • STRCAT can now concat any amount of strings
  • LOAD blocks cannot create ROM sections anymore (#576)
  • ROUND, FLOOR and CEIL fixed-point builtins were present but undocumented
  • Macro arguments can now be shifted by a negative amount, "un-shifting" them
  • Macro args can now be empty, though this causes a warning

Removed:

  • GLOBAL and XDEF keywords (deprecated aliases of EXPORT)
  • Colon-less global labels
  • *-comments
  • rgbasm -v no longer prints the elapsed time (use time for that)

Fixed:

  • Enabled several optimizations that should improve performance, especially RGBASM
  • SECTION FRAGMENTs now respect their constraints at their respective beginnings, not as a whole
  • Line numbers could be incorrect on Windows
  • RGBASM will explicitly reject more than one input file, rather than silently ignore them
  • Macro args weren't ignored in block comments
  • Fixed a rare crash with unterminated REPT/FOR blocks
  • Fixed incorrect handling of text after MACRO, ENDM and ENDR tokens
  • Can't start a new section if another with the same name has been PUSHS'd
  • ds N, @ could produce incorrect results
  • ELIF and ELSE were allowed after ELSE
  • . was treated as a label
  • Performance of gbdiff.bash improved significantly
  • Defining an EQUS after referencing it is now an error
  • Passing -t and -O to RGBLINK generated an output too large

Attention downstream packagers

Don't package this release, lol

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v0.5.0-rc2

Pre-release
Pre-release

Don't forget to check out our docs for more details on the updated functionality!

Please welcome two new contributors, @Rangi42 and @dannye! Rangi did more than half of the work on this release—our biggest one yet!

Changes since v0.5.0-rc1:

  • New DEF <name> EQU/EQUS/SET/= ... syntax for defining constants! The old syntax will still be supported, but may eventually be phased out.
  • Fix ALIGN[1] being ignored
  • Fix jr in a LOAD FRAGMENT
  • Fix an ELIF condition right after a taken IF/ELIF block still being evaluated
  • Improve some error messages and documentation
  • RGBLINK outputs USED space at the end of a .map file

Deprecated:

  • _PI wasn't useful, so it's deprecated now
  • PRINTT, PRINTV, PRINTF and PRINTI are obsoleted by the new PRINT/PRINTLN and STRFMT

Known issues:

  • Regression: Expanding recurse EQUS "recurse" or recurse EQUS "\{recurse\}" hangs rgbasm (#696)
  • .sym files miss some symbols from multiple SECTION UNIONs/FRAGMENTs (#809)

Added:

  • New MACRO <name> syntax for defining macros! The old syntax will still be supported for a couple versions, but may eventually be phased out.
  • RGBFIX can now be used in pipelines! Example: rgblink -o - obj/header.o obj/game.o | rgbfix -v -p0xFF >bin/dinos_with_lasers.gb
  • {symbol} interpolation outside of strings, similar to macro args (differs from the pre-0.4.2 behavior!!)
  • More complex format specifiers are now allowed in symbol interpolations
  • Anonymous labels
  • Environment var SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH can be used for reproducible builds
  • Underscores can be used in numeric literals (e.g. %1101_1110_1010_1101)
  • New string functions STRRIN, STRRPL and STRFMT
  • \# to get all of a macro's arguments
  • """Multi-line string literals"""
  • FOR blocks!
  • BREAK exits REPT and FOR early
  • POW and LOG fixed-point functions
  • ** exponent operator (for integers)
  • REDEF to redefine EQUS much more conveniently
  • RL has been reintroduced alongside RB and RW
  • LOAD UNION and LOAD FRAGMENT

Changed:

  • Syntax errors will now be more verbose! Be careful that YMMV depending on the Bison version that RGBASM was compiled with.
  • Syntax errors are no longer fatal! If a line contains a syntax error, RGBASM will discard it and attempt to continue with the next line.
  • RGBFIX's -m now accepts MBC names
  • More symbols will be available in the .sym and .map files
  • Slack totals are now included in the .map files
  • Interaction of quotes and macro args should be more intuitive
  • ds can now repeat patterns, not just a single byte
  • Global labels can now be indented, not just local ones
  • Trailing commas are allowed for most "list" directives, such as db
  • STRCAT can now concat any amount of strings
  • LOAD blocks cannot create ROM sections anymore (#576)
  • ROUND, FLOOR and CEIL fixed-point builtins were present but undocumented
  • Macro arguments can now be shifted by a negative amount, "un-shifting" them
  • Macro args can now be empty, though this causes a warning

Removed:

  • GLOBAL and XDEF keywords (deprecated aliases of EXPORT)
  • Colon-less global labels
  • *-comments
  • rgbasm -v no longer prints the elapsed time (use time for that)

Fixed:

  • Enabled several optimizations that should improve performance, especially RGBASM
  • SECTION FRAGMENTs now respect their constraints at their respective beginnings, not as a whole
  • Line numbers could be incorrect on Windows
  • RGBASM will explicitly reject more than one input file, rather than silently ignore them
  • Macro args weren't ignored in block comments
  • Fixed a rare crash with unterminated REPT/FOR blocks
  • Fixed incorrect handling of text after MACRO, ENDM and ENDR tokens
  • Can't start a new section if another with the same name has been PUSHS'd
  • ds N, @ could produce incorrect results
  • ELIF and ELSE were allowed after ELSE
  • . was treated as a label
  • Performance of gbdiff.bash improved significantly
  • Defining an EQUS after referencing it is now an error
  • Passing -t and -O to RGBLINK generated an output too large

Attention downstream packagers

The yacc dependency has been changed to GNU Bison! Our Makefile relies on bison -V to conditionally enable some features (src/check_bison_ver.sh) and our CMakeLists on the Bison CMake package, so both should be compatible with many versions, at least 3.0 (3.0.4 successfully tested). Please report breakage in our issue tracker.

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v0.5.0-rc1

Pre-release
Pre-release

Don't forget to check out our docs for more details on the updated functionality!

Please welcome two new contributors, @Rangi42 and @dannye! Rangi did more than half of the work on this release—our biggest one yet!

Deprecated:

  • _PI wasn't useful, so it's deprecated now
  • PRINTT, PRINTV, PRINTF and PRINTI are obsoleted by the new PRINT/PRINTLN and STRFMT

Known issues:

  • An ELIF condition right after a taken IF/ELIF block is still evaluated (#764)
  • Regression: Expanding recurse EQUS "recurse" hangs rgbasm (#696)

Added:

  • New MACRO <name> syntax for defining macros! The old syntax will still be supported for a couple versions, but will eventually be phased out.
  • RGBFIX can now be used in pipelines! Example: rgblink -o - obj/header.o obj/game.o | rgbfix -v -p0xFF >bin/dinos_with_lasers.gb
  • {symbol} interpolation outside of strings, similar to macro args (differs from the pre-0.4.2 behavior!!)
  • More complex format specifiers are now allowed in symbol interpolations
  • Anonymous labels
  • Environment var SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH can be used for reproducible builds
  • Underscores can be used in numeric literals (e.g. %1101_1110_1010_1101)
  • New string functions STRRIN, STRRPL and STRFMT
  • \# to get all of a macro's arguments
  • """Multi-line string literals"""
  • FOR blocks!
  • BREAK exits REPT and FOR early
  • POW and LOG fixed-point functions
  • ** exponent operator (for integers)
  • REDEF to redefine EQUS much more conveniently
  • RL has been reintroduced alongside RB and RW
  • LOAD UNION and LOAD FRAGMENT

Changed:

  • Syntax errors will now be more verbose! Be careful that YMMV depending on the Bison version that RGBASM was compiled with.
  • Syntax errors are no longer fatal! If a line contains a syntax error, RGBASM will discard it and attempt to continue with the next line.
  • RGBFIX's -m now accepts MBC names
  • More symbols will be available in the .sym and .map files
  • Slack totals are now included in the .map files
  • Interaction of quotes and macro args should be more intuitive
  • ds can now repeat patterns, not just a single byte
  • Global labels can now be indented, not just local ones
  • Trailing commas are allowed for most "list" directives, such as db
  • STRCAT can now concat any amount of strings
  • LOAD blocks cannot create ROM sections anymore (#576)
  • ROUND, FLOOR and CEIL fixed-point builtins were present but undocumented
  • Macro arguments can now be shifted by a negative amount, "un-shifting" them
  • Macro args can now be empty, though this causes a warning

Removed:

  • GLOBAL and XDEF keywords (deprecated aliases of EXPORT)
  • Colon-less global labels
  • *-comments
  • rgbasm -vno longer prints the elapsed time (use time for that)

Fixed:

  • Enabled several optimizations that should improve performance, especially RGBASM
  • SECTION FRAGMENTs now respect their constraints at their respective beginnings, not as a whole
  • Line numbers could be incorrect on Windows
  • RGBASM will explicitly reject more than one input file, rather than silently ignore them
  • Macro args weren't ignored in block comments
  • Fixed a rare crash with unterminated REPT/FOR blocks
  • Fixed incorrect handling of text after MACRO, ENDM and ENDR tokens
  • Can't start a new section if another with the same name has been PUSHS'd
  • ds N, @ could produce incorrect results
  • ELIF and ELSE were allowed after ELSE
  • . was treated as a label
  • Performance of gbdiff.bash improved significantly
  • Defining an EQUS after referencing it is now an error
  • Passing -t and -O to RGBLINK generated an output too large

Attention downstream packagers

The yacc dependency has been changed to GNU Bison! Our Makefile relies on bison -V to conditionally enable some features (src/check_bison_ver.sh) and our CMakeLists on the Bison CMake package, so both should be compatible with many versions, at least 3.0 (3.0.4 successfully tested). Please report breakage in our issue tracker.

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New:

  • We have a website! Accordingly, HTML documentation is no longer distributed in the source or in the release artifacts below. All old documentation links now redirect to the latest release's documentation
  • You may also have noticed the repo has been moved to gbdev instead of rednex! Don't worry, the same people are in charge.
  • /* Block comments! */
  • Whitespace is now allowed between the brackets in [bc], [de] and [hl], also allowing [\1] to work.
  • The second number argument to INCBIN can now be omitted, going up to the end of the file
  • The argument to rb and rw is now optional, defaulting to 1
  • RGBASM and RGBLINK can both use stdin as input, and stdout as output (support yet to come to RGBFIX)
  • zsh completion scripts are available in the contrib/ folder. (If you want to make bash ones, apply in #620)

Changes:

  • Nested macros are now invalid, but a workaround is possible
  • The lexer has been fully rewritten, which should make additions to it easier, and improve performance
  • Removed arbitrary limits on charmap size and name length
  • STRSUB will no longer warn when taking 0 characters at the end of the string
  • RGBLINK will no longer report errors stemming from other errors
  • RGBASM is now able to write more jrs without relying on RGBLINK, leading to smaller .o files and faster linking
  • INCBIN should produce a slightly more useful error message
  • A bunch of quality-of-life improvements for downstream packagers, especially using CMake
  • Assertions have been removed from release builds, improving performance slightly
  • charmaps now allocate memory as nodes are allocated, greatly reducing their size (by a factor of ~8)
  • Documentation now mentions that SHIFT updates _NARG

Fixes:

  • Two 6+ year-old crashing bugs have been fixed. They were thankfully rare, but should no longer be a problem now.
  • LOAD blocks could produce incorrect output when at the beginning or end of a section
  • __FILE__ caused syntax errors if the file name contained a quote
  • jr in certain circumstances could crash RGBLINK
  • Fixed inconsistent version numbering between the Makefile and the CMakeLists
  • Documentation failed to mention SECTION FRAGMENT
  • Documentation incorrectly listed bit 7 of symbol type as being the unionized section flag, and failed to mention the section fragment flag
  • Documentation erroneously used to claim that symbol names could begin with a digit
  • Error out when using align outside of a SECTION, or when using shift outside of a macro... instead of crashing
  • Fixed a potential RGBASM crash with very large expressions
  • Fixed overwriting a builtin symbol succeeding after insisting enough
  • Fixed a crash when subtracting two invalid labels
  • Fixed using _NARG outside of a macro crashing RGBASM

Note to Windows users

Release 0.4.1's binaries were compiled with MSVC instead of MinGW, giving apparently better results. Unfortunately, there is currently a problem with MSVC (not that we can do anything about it, yay!), so the binaries below are MinGW again. 0.4.3 should be compiled with MSVC again, though.

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v0.4.2-pre

Pre-release
Pre-release

This is a pre-release! Do not expect this to be fully stable yet; please read the explanation at the end of the changelog.

New:

  • We have a website! Accordingly, HTML documentation is no longer distributed in the source or in the release artifacts below. All old documentation links now redirect to the latest release's documentation
  • You may also have noticed the repo has been moved to gbdev instead of rednex! Don't worry, the same people are in charge.
  • Whitespace is now allowed between the brackets in [bc], [de] and [hl], also allowing [\1] to work.
  • The second number argument to INCBIN can now be omitted, going to the end of the file

Changes:

  • The lexer has been fully rewritten, which should make additions to it easier, and improve performance
  • Removed arbitrary limits on charmap number and length of name
  • STRSUB will no longer warn when talking 0 characters at the end of the string
  • RGBLINK will no longer report errors stemming from other errors
  • RGBASM is now able to write more jrs without relying on RGBLINK, leading to smaller .o files and faster linking
  • INCBIN should produce a slightly more useful error message
  • A bunch of quality-of-life improvements for downstream packagers, especially using CMake
  • Assertions have been removed from release builds, improving performance slightly
  • charmaps now allocate memory as nodes are allocated, greatly reducing their size (by a factor of ~8)

Fixes:

  • Two 6+ year-old crashing bugs have been fixed. They were thankfully rare, but should no longer be a problem now.
  • LOAD blocks could produce incorrect output when at the beginning or end of a section
  • __FILE__ caused syntax errors if the file name contained a quote
  • jr in certain circumstances could crash RGBLINK
  • Fixed inconsistent version number between the Makefile and the CMakeLists
  • Documentation failed to mention SECTION FRAGMENT
  • Documentation incorrectly listed bit 7 of symbol type as being the unionized section flag, and failed to mention the section fragment flag

Why a pre-release?

The lexer, which is the core component of RGBASM, has been fully rewritten. Being also a very low-level piece of code, it's prone to crashing. The rewrite may also have changed some behavior (here is a known incompatibility). This pre-release is essentially to test the waters: see if anything breaks, assess how to handle it, and make 0.4.2 a good and stable release.

Why rewrite it? Didn't it work fine?

In short, the old lexer worked "fine" if you didn't look at it the wrong way. It was also hard to edit, and blocked a bunch of issues, 6 open at the time of writing. Further, the performance wasn't great, and we're hoping to improve it with this release.

It sucks! Stuff broke and it's slow!

Alright, we'd love to hear back about that. Check the "issues" tab near the top of the page for anything similar to your problem, otherwise open a new issue. We'd preferably need the code that you ran RGBASM on, so that we can see why it's slow.

⚠️ ATTENTION WINDOWS USERS ⚠️

RGBDS does not ship the Visual C++ runtime libraries anymore; if you don't have the 2019 ones (you should get an error message about some vcruntime DLL missing), you can install them from Microsoft's website.

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The version that brought GBDK support! I mean, brought them our support?

New:

  • RGBLINK tries to report more errors at once
  • Two-argument ALIGN[] to additionally specify an offset
  • Mid-section align directive
  • A RGBLINK option to prevent padding its output
  • A warning for empty db/dw/dl in ROM sections
  • (Overdue) documentation of -MG, -MP, -MT and -MQ
  • RGBDS can now be compiled using CMake, if you prefer; note that the Makefile is still the main build method
  • RGBDS should be able to be compiled using MSVC now

Deprecations:

  • -Wobsolete is now enabled by default! This is not a deprecation, but it should make it easier for you to notice deprecated changes
  • *-comments are now deprecated, please use ;-comments instead

Changes:

  • Consistently with RGBLINK, RGBASM now allows constants to be referenced prior to their definition (see #496 for details)
  • RGBASM ISO 8601 symbols now correctly separate time with colons
  • Macro can now have an arbitrary number of arguments; a sanity limit has been arbitrarily set to 99,999, which should be enough for everyone

Fixes:

  • Fixed RGBLINK incorrectly computing PC inside LOAD blocks
  • Fixed BANK(@) outside of sections crashing RGBASM
  • Fixed BANK() of a constant crashing RGBLINK
  • Fixed period not being accepted as second character of a label name
  • Fixed possible RGBASM crash from an empty input file
  • Fixed modulo by 0 crashing RGBLINK
  • Fixed user-after-free from errors in INCLUDEd linker scripts
  • Fixed 0-byte sections being incorrectly printed in .map files
  • Fixed a rare RGBASM hang when deleting symbols
  • Fixed uninitialized memory reads with -MT and -MQ
  • Fixed incorrect explanation of pop af instruction
  • Fixed incorrect reporting of overlapping sections
  • Fixed incorrect documentation of unary !
  • Fixed documentation not updated regarding behavior of RGBLINK's -t and -w
  • Fixed implicitly relying on -fcommon: RGBDS now builds with GCC 10's default configuration
  • RGBDS no longer relies on 32-bit int, making it more portable to e.g. DOS

Note for Windows users: The binaries below have been compiled on Windows using MSVC, instead of cross-compiled. No difference has been found after some testing, but if something breaks, please open an issue!