It's been quite a while since my last update. I was starting to feel a little worn out from all the work I'd been putting into the emulator over the past few months so since releasing R12 I've been taking a bit of a break from Daedalus to unwind and recharge my batteries.
It's been really nice just taking a bit of a break to do a few different things with my spare time. I spent a short while in Spain with my sister, and since I've been back I've been catching up with a bit of reading, watched a load of TV that I'd queued up and played through a few games I'd had gathering dust for a while. Sadly my 360 succumbed to the Red Ring of Death last week so it seems I might have been pushing it a bit too hard
I found a new flat in Guildford which I'll be moving to at the end of August. I'm quite excited about the move as I'll save a lot of time commuting. It currently takes me little over an hour to travel into work and it'll just be 15 minutes once I move. I'm hoping that cutting back on the commute should not only free up a couple of hours each day, but I'll also be a bit less knackered once I finish for the day.
I also picked up a Macbook Pro during my 'time off' and I've really been enjoying my new-found sense of computing freedom (I've been writing this post on the train on the way home from work.) It's the 17" 'lapzilla' model, and it's an absolute beast. It actually compiles Daedalus faster than my year old desktop PC which I find pretty impressive. I'll have some details and tutorials about compiling Daedalus PSP under OSX in the near future.
Now that I've had a bit of time off, I'm feeling very excited about getting cracking with R13. My main feeling is that I'd like to continue working on speeding up the emulator to try and improve the framerate for titles that are already working. From your comments on this blog and on other sites such as the DCEmu forums (the site seems to be down right now - I'll update with a link later) it seems that this is mostly what people are interested in seeing for the next release.
There are a number of different areas I can investigate to help improve performance. The two main possibilities I want to investigate are working on further dynarec improvements, and looking at making use the Media Engine. To start with I'm going to explore both of these areas and try and figure out which would give the biggest 'bang for buck' for R13. I'll post and update on R13 when I have more details.
Custom Controller Configurations
A number of people have asked if I would be adding support for user-defined controller configurations in a future release of Daedalus. As it happens Daedalus has supported user-defined controller configurations from R7 onwards. From the readme file:
As of R7 Daedalus now allows user-configurable controls to be specified.
The desired controls can be chosen from the Rom Settings screen.
In order to define your own controller configuration you need to add a
new .ini file to the Daedalus/ControllerConfigs directory. There are a
few examples provided which should give an overview of what is possible.
I will look at providing a more thorough tutorial shortly.
The format really is quite simple, but it is very flexible and allows for a number of advanced configurations. Here is a simple configuration which is distributed with Daedalus (ControllerConfigs/dpad.ini):
Description=By default the PSP DPad maps to the N64 DPad. Hold Circle to map to the CButtons.
N64.Start = PSP.Start
N64.A = PSP.Cross
N64.B = PSP.Square
N64.Z = PSP.Triangle
N64.LTrigger = PSP.LTrigger
N64.RTrigger = PSP.RTrigger
N64.Up = !PSP.Circle & PSP.Up
N64.Down = !PSP.Circle & PSP.Down
N64.Left = !PSP.Circle & PSP.Left
N64.Right = !PSP.Circle & PSP.Right
N64.CUp = PSP.Circle & PSP.Up
N64.CDown = PSP.Circle & PSP.Down
N64.CLeft = PSP.Circle & PSP.Left
N64.CRight = PSP.Circle & PSP.Right
The file starts with two lines defining the name and description for the controller config. These strings are used in the UI when selecting configurations. The '[Buttons]' block defines the mapping from PSP controls to N64 controls. In this particular configuration the N64 d-pad is mapped to the PSP d-pad when the circle button is released. When circle is pressed, the PSP d-pad maps to the N64 c-buttons. This config is particularly useful for games which make heavy use of the d-pad.
In the [Buttons] section, the left hand side of each rule must consist of one of the following N64 control names:
N64.Start The N64's start button
N64.A The N64's A button
N64.B The N64's B button
N64.Z The N64's Z trigger
N64.LTrigger The left trigger
N64.RTrigger The right trigger
N64.Up Up on the N64's d-pad
N64.Down Down on the N64's d-pad
N64.Left Left on the N64's d-pad
N64.Right Right on the N64's d-pad
N64.CUp The N64's C up button
N64.CDown The N64's C down button
N64.CLeft The N64's C left button
N64.CRight The N64's C right button
N.B. There is currently no definition for the N64's analogue stick. By default this is always assumed to be bound to the PSP's analogue stick.
The right hand side of a rule consists of an expression defined from the following values:
PSP.Start The PSP's start button
PSP.Cross The PSP's cross button
PSP.Square The PSP's square button
PSP.Triangle The PSP's triangle button
PSP.Circle The PSP's circle button
PSP.LTrigger The PSP's left shoulder button
PSP.RTrigger The PSP's right shoulder button
PSP.Up Up on the PSP's d-pad
PSP.Down Down on the PSP's d-pad
PSP.Left Left on the PSP's d-pad
PSP.Right Right on the PSP's d-pad
N.B. You cannot use the PSP's select button when defining controller configurations, as this is reserved for the emulator's use.
Values can be combined using a few simple operations to allow rules to be constructed with more complex behaviour. For instance, the following line:
N64.CUp = PSP.Circle & PSP.Up
Tells Daedalus to report that the N64 C up button is pressed when both the circle AND d-pad up buttons are pressed on the PSP. The NOT operator (!) can be used to invert a value, for instance:
N64.Up = !PSP.Circle & PSP.Up
This rule tells Daedalus to report that the N64 d-pad up button is pressed when the PSP's circle button is not pressed while the d-pad up button is being pressed.
The available logical operators are:
Operator Description Example
expr & expr Returns the logical AND of the two expressions N64.CUp=PSP.LTrigger & PSP.Up
expr | expr Returns the logical OR of the two expressions N64.A=PSP.Cross | PSP.Circle
!expr Returns the logical NOT of the expression N64.Up = !PSP.LTrigger & PSP.Up
You can also use parentheses to control the order of precedence, e.g.:
N64.CUp = PSP.Up | (PSP.LTrigger & PSP.Triangle)
Which defines a rule which defines that the N64 C up button is pressed when either up on the PSP d-pad is pressed, or when the left shoulder button and triangle are pressed.
No single controller mapping scheme can be provided which works well across all games, but using custom controller configs it should be possible to create a mapping which works well for any given game.
Post any questions you might have in the comment pages, and I'll do my best to answer them. If you come up with a good controller config for a game, email me (my name @gmail.com) and I'll look at adding it for distribution with future releases of Daedalus.