SNES Emulator Woes

Anything DreamSNES-related can be asked in this forum, such as general questions about the emulator, how to burn it, etc.
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SNES Emulator Woes

Post by Superstrider » Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:54 pm

I'm trying to find a SNES emulator that supports the first Star Ocean... I already know that DreamSNES is incompatible, and SNES4ALL has serious graphic bugs. Anyone know of an emulator that can play the ROM properly? And at a decent speed? Seriously, I believe that something should be done in order to have proper emulation on the Dreamcast... Why is it that the SNES is so hard to code properly? I've seen emulators for Gameboy, NES, SMS, GG, and Genesis played at full speed without frame-skipping... Even various Bleemcast Games have better speed...

Anyway, is there anyway to completely rectify the problem? I know that this may be asking a bit too much, but since an emulator like the ones mentioned above have existed for several years, do you think that improvements should be made?

Anyway, if anyone has some relevant information, please respond.
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Re: SNES Emulator Woes

Post by Christuserloeser » Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:35 pm

Superstrider wrote:I'm trying to find a SNES emulator that supports the first Star Ocean... I already know that DreamSNES is incompatible, and SNES4ALL has serious graphic bugs. Anyone know of an emulator that can play the ROM properly? And at a decent speed?
Try Super Famicast v1. Doesn't have properly working sound emulation but it's pretty fast without sound enabled. Even faster than SFC v2.
Superstrider wrote:Seriously, I believe that something should be done in order to have proper emulation on the Dreamcast... Why is it that the SNES is so hard to code properly? I've seen emulators for Gameboy, NES, SMS, GG, and Genesis played at full speed without frame-skipping... Even various Bleemcast Games have better speed...
The 8-bit machines are about the max you can get to work full speed on Dreamcast without switching to SH4 assembler.

GenesisPlusDC uses a custom PVR renderer that BlackAura wrote for this emulator. Without it, it would run much slower than DSNES. Neo4All does use FAME, Fox68k's M68000 emulator in SH4 assembler plus a fast custom VDP core.

Bleem!cast was custom tailored in its entirety for the Dreamcast's hardware, that's why some call it an interpreter, I think.

Superstrider wrote:Anyway, is there anyway to completely rectify the problem? I know that this may be asking a bit too much, but since an emulator like the ones mentioned above have existed for several years, do you think that improvements should be made?
DSNES can't be improved by anyone else other than the original team. It's basically a closed source project.

Some thoughts as to why darc and me think that they've stopped working on DSNES: viewtopic.php?p=995276#p995276



- However, Chui and Fox68k are working on a port of ZSNES to Dreamcast. At least there were plans to do so:

http://www.dcemu.co.uk/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=80614
Christuserloeser wrote:Guess we're a bit late on this one, but Chui posted about his plans on some of his current and future projects in his forum a while back:

SNES4ALL project is stopped now, sorry. Fox and me are thinking to rebuild ALL for making a ZNES multiplatform port with some SH4 assembler cores. It is very crazy and we will spend a long time.

[...]

Source: Chui's Dev and Discussion Forum, hosted at DCEmu UK
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Re: SNES Emulator Woes

Post by Juan » Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:43 pm

Star Ocean has a custom chip which makes it very unlikely to work on Dreamcast. Not so long ago it wasn't even properly emulated on PC.
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Re: SNES Emulator Woes

Post by Christuserloeser » Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:52 pm

True, but from what I remember it should work with both, Super Famicast and SNES4All.
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Re: SNES Emulator Woes

Post by Superstrider » Wed Jun 11, 2008 2:26 pm

True, but my copy of Star Ocean is a Fan-Translation. Therefore, it was heavily modified. Anyway, about the plans for ZSNES... Any news if the project was put on hold or scrapped? Because, in my opinion, ZSNES is the best SNES emulator that exists. (ROMs can be played at full speed without frame-skipping, even on an old Windows 95 machine.)

In retrospect, do you think that proper emulation is actually possible, or just a dream? I hope that it is the latter of the two.
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Re: SNES Emulator Woes

Post by Christuserloeser » Wed Jun 11, 2008 5:14 pm

I am sure that it is possible. The two most popular SNES emulators were written with comparably fast x86 based machines in mind, while the Dreamcast's power is the combination of its components. DreamSNES already performs much better than ZSNES would on a Pentium with 300MHz, but it also shows that there's a limit on what you can achieve with the 200MHz of the SH4.
Now, if the SNES' VDP would be emulated via the Dreamcast's PowerVR, you'd have plenty of room to emulate the SNES' CPU and APU. That is what Bleem!cast, GenesisPlusDC and Segagen do, but it would require an enormous amount of work.
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Re: SNES Emulator Woes

Post by meemeesiko » Mon Jun 16, 2008 1:49 pm

Christuserloeser wrote: Now, if the SNES' VDP would be emulated via the Dreamcast's PowerVR, you'd have plenty of room to emulate the SNES' CPU and APU. That is what Bleem!cast, GenesisPlusDC and Segagen do, but it would require an enormous amount of work.
I always wondered why the SNES games don't ever seem to run very well on the DC, when the DC is obviously powerful enough to play 16-bit games. Exactly what would you have to do to fix the problems? How could you create an SNES Emulator that used the PowerVR?

And I have the same version of Star Ocean that was discussed above, and it works beautifully on my system through ZSNES. What makes it so difficult to make it work on Dreamcast? I haven't tried to work with the game on the DC; I know that it has problems. But how could you fix that?
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