#1 Posted by wgoldie (45 posts) -

I hooked up a tablet (jailbroken ipad but android would work as well or better probably) with emulators on it to a wiimote with classic controller (bluetooth connection). Great Nintendo dpad, screen that's big enough to see what's going on but not as painfully high-res as a pc screen, and it's easy to turn on and use once setup. Currently playing Super Metroid for SNES.

Worth trying if you have any interest in older games, a HUGE leap over playing on a PC or modern console with a port using a controller or keyboard. The classic controller somehow works really well, it must be the flat buttons and good dpad. Perhaps XBone controller will be better, I heard it has the "+" dpad.

I also recently finished a MAME cabinet build (full-size) which is nice for arcade games, but not so great for non-joystick designed games. Neo-geo I can get away with, esp. fighting games, and some 2600 stuff, but the rest has to be switched to 4-way mode which takes too long to be practical. (You have to get inside the machine and have 2 people do it)

Thoughts?

#2 Posted by falserelic (5413 posts) -

I just use my custom psp to play my emulators...

#3 Posted by wgoldie (45 posts) -

@falserelic: PSP also seems good for mobility. How does the aspect ratio work out?

#4 Edited by believer258 (11814 posts) -

@falserelic said:

I just use my custom psp to play my emulators...

This. I also have a softmodded Xbox that plays SNES games pretty much perfectly without any fiddling. And, well, a PC that does it better than anything if you can figure out which boxes to tick.

At this point, though, playing older games is almost trivial on many different kinds of devices. You can be damn certain that I'm not going to do it on a phone or tablet.

Online
#5 Posted by falserelic (5413 posts) -

@wgoldie said:

@falserelic: PSP also seems good for mobility. How does the aspect ratio work out?

I know this may sound weird, but what does aspect ratio mean?

#6 Edited by Rihanna (85 posts) -

@wgoldie said:

@falserelic: PSP also seems good for mobility. How does the aspect ratio work out?

I know this may sound weird, but what does aspect ratio mean?

The PSP screen has an aspect ratio of 16:9 (widescreen). Old games usually had an aspect ration of 4:3 (old square CRT TVs).

If you play a 4:3 game on a PSP, it may stretch the image to fill the screen, resulting in a distorted image. I think the emulator allows you to play the game in 4:3 with black bars on the sides of the screen on the PSP.

#7 Edited by KaneRobot (1548 posts) -

Nexus 7 tablet w/ wired 360 controller plus OTG cable (to make it mini USB) has worked great for me. Must have when I travel.

#8 Posted by Damodar (1375 posts) -

@wgoldie said:

@falserelic: PSP also seems good for mobility. How does the aspect ratio work out?

I know this may sound weird, but what does aspect ratio mean?

It's the ratio between screen width and height. Take a current widescreen HD TV, it'll be a resolution of 1920x1080 and thus a ratio of 16:9, 16 pixels wide for every 9 pixels high. The PSP is 16:9 (sort of, it 480x272, I think, so the screen is 2 rows of pixels higher than it should be to be perfect 16:9, not sure why they did that) but the sort of games you'd be emulating on a PSP would be ones that were designed before widescreen TVs were standard and they used a ratio of 4:3. This means that when you play a SNES game on a PSP, you're either stretching the image horizontally to fill the screen, chopping the top and bottom off the picture so it fills the screen or keeps the aspect ratio, resulting in black areas of the screen either side of the picture that aren't getting filled.

@wgoldie I haven't used my PSP for emulating in a while since I still have all my consoles, but you get a choice of stretching, cropping or vertical letterboxing. I preferred the latter, but it's a personal preference thing. There might also be an option that splits the difference between a full crop and full vertical letterbox, so that you lose a little bit of the picture, but it fills more of the screen and keeps the aspect ratio in tact. I'm pretty sure that's one of the options when running PS1 games, at least.

#9 Posted by RecSpec (3805 posts) -

I use my Wii for my TV, PSP if I want to play stuff on the go.

#10 Posted by Sin4profit (2924 posts) -
#11 Posted by falserelic (5413 posts) -

@damodar: @rihanna: Thanks for letting me know. I had no idea about that stuff until now...

#12 Posted by wgoldie (45 posts) -

@believer258: I like the tablet's screen size... not sure your bias against it. Apple is not a good company, but I got it used from someone who didn't need it.

@damodar: I've been thinking about picking up a PSP/Vita/3ds.

Does anyone know if 3ds has softmodding yet, or softmodding that makes sense to use? I remember older DS models had good mod communities but needed R4 cards.... The 3ds has an SD slot IIRC, so maybe you could load mods through that?

I'm guessing the Vita has a big modding scene coming out of the PSP community.

#13 Edited by wgoldie (45 posts) -

@sin4profit: WOW! I had no idea that existed. Not sure if it will fit on the sticks I have (i suspect they are a branded version of Happ competition but not positive) but thanks for posting. Ultimarc/Suzo-Happ/Jamma really need to organize their sites so we can find these hidden gems.

#14 Posted by believer258 (11814 posts) -

@wgoldie: I just mean that there I own devices that already do a better job of emulating games than a tablet, and that I prefer far more than a tablet.

It's fine if that's how you want to play emulators, but to play SNES or GBA games, or really anything else pre-PS1 (And it can even play some PS1 games, though it's not so great at that.), all I have to do is turn on my Xbox and pick the right emulator. All of the controls are already set up specifically for the Xbox controller, so there's none of the hit-or-miss control schemes that the PC can sometimes have. And it can even play some PS1 games, though it's not so great at that.

Online
#15 Posted by Turtlebird95 (2365 posts) -

I've been emulating on my tablet for awhile now and I really love it.

#16 Posted by PeasantAbuse (5138 posts) -

@wgoldie: I just mean that there I own devices that already do a better job of emulating games than a tablet, and that I prefer far more than a tablet.

It's fine if that's how you want to play emulators, but to play SNES or GBA games, or really anything else pre-PS1 (And it can even play some PS1 games, though it's not so great at that.), all I have to do is turn on my Xbox and pick the right emulator. All of the controls are already set up specifically for the Xbox controller, so there's none of the hit-or-miss control schemes that the PC can sometimes have. And it can even play some PS1 games, though it's not so great at that.

Are you doing this with a 360 or orginal Xbox? I've only ever done this stuff with my PC and setting up the controls can sometimes be a pain in the ass.

#17 Posted by TruthTellah (8835 posts) -

@wgoldie: Have you tried hooking your Wiimote to your PC?

If you're attached to that controller, you can pair it using bluetooth.

#18 Posted by believer258 (11814 posts) -

@peasantabuse: Original. Actually doing the softmodding itself isn't easy, and the emulators did require a bit of setup. But not much.

Online
#19 Edited by Damodar (1375 posts) -

@wgoldie: Did you build your MAME cabinet or buy one? I'm thinking it's inevitable that I end up with one and have had a lot of thoughts about how I'd go about designing one.

#20 Edited by sqrabbit (108 posts) -

I may be the odd man out here, but the D-pad on the Wii classic controller sucks. Try and use one of these instead.

EDIT: Just saw this site. They can make NES, SNES and N64 controllers that work with the Wii.

http://www.infiniteneslives.com/products.php

#21 Posted by Maginnovision (487 posts) -

I use my dreamcast for emulators.

#22 Edited by BBAlpert (1444 posts) -

@damodar said:

@wgoldie: Did you build your MAME cabinet or buy one? I'm thinking it's inevitable that I end up with one and have had a lot of thoughts about how I'd go about designing one.

I've started going down that road and I must warn you, costs can add up really quickly if you're not careful/willing to make compromises.

*Edit: Send me a PM if you have any questions about that stuff. I haven't actually built one myself, but I have been doing a bunch of research and found a few super helpful websites.

#23 Posted by Damodar (1375 posts) -

@bbalpert said:

@damodar said:

@wgoldie: Did you build your MAME cabinet or buy one? I'm thinking it's inevitable that I end up with one and have had a lot of thoughts about how I'd go about designing one.

I've started going down that road and I must warn you, costs can add up really quickly if you're not careful/willing to make compromises.

*Edit: Send me a PM if you have any questions about that stuff. I haven't actually built one myself, but I have been doing a bunch of research and found a few super helpful websites.

Yeah, thanks! I'll keep it in mind!

#24 Posted by Armoes (64 posts) -

I've considered using an ipad 2... but a PC monitor and xbox 360 controller works fine.

I always think I want to play old games because I loved them as a kid.. but they were just the best choice I had at the time.

I did recently finish Shadowrun for the SNES for the first time. (I'd gotten a ways in plenty of times before.)

#25 Posted by wgoldie (45 posts) -

@damodar said:

@bbalpert said:

@damodar said:

@wgoldie: Did you build your MAME cabinet or buy one? I'm thinking it's inevitable that I end up with one and have had a lot of thoughts about how I'd go about designing one.

I've started going down that road and I must warn you, costs can add up really quickly if you're not careful/willing to make compromises.

*Edit: Send me a PM if you have any questions about that stuff. I haven't actually built one myself, but I have been doing a bunch of research and found a few super helpful websites.

Yeah, thanks! I'll keep it in mind!

I built it. The best way to go IMHO is with a Raspberry Pi board, ($35), and an iPac or xArcade board to translate buttons into keyboard signals. I bought a 2 stick, 20 button pack with translator from xArcade for $90 inc. shipping and handling, and then got two big 48"x96" sheets of plywood (~$60 depending on where you buy) and built the cabinet. I'd be happy to share plans if you're interested. You also need an sd card, usb drive, keyboard (for setup only), speakers, and power microusb power supply for the Pi, and possibly a video adapter.\ (The Pi has composite and HDMI out). I had a lot of that list lying around at home, so total cost to me was about $200. However, this requires that you have access to a machine shop and know how to use the tools there (table saw, miter saw, drill press or high-powered drill with stand, Krieg jig, and biscuit cutter).

You could also get and old broken cabinet and gut it, and then put the Pi in. I used PiMame, which includes a few emulators besides Mame. I had to spend about 3 days straight configuring the Linux system though, so make sure you are techy enough to figure it out.

A simpler but more expensive route would be to build or buy a basic PC, use the same translator options for the controls, and just put the machine inside.

One I've never seen done but thought of would be to put one of the new streaming boxes to your PC or just run control and video cables to the PC and run MAME off there, possibly in Steam Big Picture for the controller support. No idea if this would work, and I think you would need a powered USB extender cable for the control cable because USB has a 5ft limit or so.

PM or ask me here if you need any help.

#26 Edited by Nubikal (107 posts) -

Nexus 7 tablet w/ wired 360 controller plus OTG cable (to make it mini USB) has worked great for me. Must have when I travel.

I can vouch for this set-up.

#27 Edited by Damodar (1375 posts) -

@wgoldie said:

@damodar said:

@bbalpert said:

@damodar said:

@wgoldie: Did you build your MAME cabinet or buy one? I'm thinking it's inevitable that I end up with one and have had a lot of thoughts about how I'd go about designing one.

I've started going down that road and I must warn you, costs can add up really quickly if you're not careful/willing to make compromises.

*Edit: Send me a PM if you have any questions about that stuff. I haven't actually built one myself, but I have been doing a bunch of research and found a few super helpful websites.

Yeah, thanks! I'll keep it in mind!

I built it. The best way to go IMHO is with a Raspberry Pi board, ($35), and an iPac or xArcade board to translate buttons into keyboard signals. I bought a 2 stick, 20 button pack with translator from xArcade for $90 inc. shipping and handling, and then got two big 48"x96" sheets of plywood (~$60 depending on where you buy) and built the cabinet. I'd be happy to share plans if you're interested. You also need an sd card, usb drive, keyboard (for setup only), speakers, and power microusb power supply for the Pi, and possibly a video adapter.\ (The Pi has composite and HDMI out). I had a lot of that list lying around at home, so total cost to me was about $200. However, this requires that you have access to a machine shop and know how to use the tools there (table saw, miter saw, drill press or high-powered drill with stand, Krieg jig, and biscuit cutter).

You could also get and old broken cabinet and gut it, and then put the Pi in. I used PiMame, which includes a few emulators besides Mame. I had to spend about 3 days straight configuring the Linux system though, so make sure you are techy enough to figure it out.

A simpler but more expensive route would be to build or buy a basic PC, use the same translator options for the controls, and just put the machine inside.

One I've never seen done but thought of would be to put one of the new streaming boxes to your PC or just run control and video cables to the PC and run MAME off there, possibly in Steam Big Picture for the controller support. No idea if this would work, and I think you would need a powered USB extender cable for the control cable because USB has a 5ft limit or so.

PM or ask me here if you need any help.

Thanks for the detailed reply, I'll keep it all in mind! I've actually got most of the bits and pieces I'd need except for the wood and the sticks and buttons. Thanks for the tip on the I-Pac, that sounds perfect. Anyway, it's something I'm sure I'll get to some time. I might build another arcade stick first and put Seimitsu parts in that so I can see how they compare to my Sanwa stuff, probably worth checking out before I commit to something like a cabinet.

#28 Posted by Sweep (8845 posts) -

I'm not a lawyer (I just pretend to be one on the internet) but isn't emulation of games still illegal? Or is it just the download of roms that is illegal? I can never remember.

Anyway, illegal shit is prohibited on these forums, so if what you're talking about is against the rules, stop doing it.

Moderator
#29 Edited by BeachThunder (11857 posts) -

@sweep: You're conflating emulation and piracy =|

They are not inherently related. I was just playing the original Tetris, which I legally purchased via the 3DS eShop...

#30 Posted by fisk0 (4037 posts) -

@sweep said:

I'm not a lawyer (I just pretend to be one on the internet) but isn't emulation of games still illegal? Or is it just the download of roms that is illegal? I can never remember.

Anyway, illegal shit is prohibited on these forums, so if what you're talking about is against the rules, stop doing it.

Depends on what's emulated and how. PlayStation emulators generally can't be used legally, since they need BIOS files from original hardware to run, and most people don't have the capability to dump that on their own, meaning they'll have to download that illegally in order to play, unless they purchase legal emulated games off of PSN or PlayStation Mobile.

As far as I can tell, there's nothing illegal about hardware emulators though, such as DosBox, and emulators of 4th generation (16-bit era) or older consoles - emulators that don't need any data from the original machines to run, but work by just emulating the functions of the often off-the-shelf hardware that were used in consoles prior to the 32-bit era. As was shown in the OUYA coverage a few weeks ago, there are legally available ROMs for NES and other old consoles that you can play on such emulators without breaking any laws or even entering any "legally grey" areas.

If they start talking about where to get illegal commercial ROMs, they are breaking the laws in some places (I think that applies to the US, here in Sweden they would only be breaking the law if they supplied the ROMs directly, i.e. hosting the files, rather than just linking to them).

#31 Posted by Dagbiker (6974 posts) -

I wish i bought a Bleem when i was able to.

but older games, NES, SNES and so forth, have all that data on the cart. And so downloading the bios is not illegal but downloading the roms are.

from about the PS1 on, the consoles had data that needed to decode and read the data. it is illegal to download both.

But if you have both it is not illegal to copy, for personal use, it is also not illegal to use part of the data for fair use ( how you would do that i have no clue )

#32 Posted by OGinOR (314 posts) -

Apart from a PC, isn't the device you're looking for called an Ouya? Seems like emulation is the biggest selling point of the little $99 engine-that-could.

#33 Posted by Grixxel (765 posts) -

@sweep said:

I'm not a lawyer (I just pretend to be one on the internet) but isn't emulation of games still illegal? Or is it just the download of roms that is illegal? I can never remember.

Anyway, illegal shit is prohibited on these forums, so if what you're talking about is against the rules, stop doing it.

Yes, thanks for the reminder that illegal shit is not cool and against the rules. Who would have thought?

#34 Posted by Sweep (8845 posts) -

@grixxel said:

@sweep said:

I'm not a lawyer (I just pretend to be one on the internet) but isn't emulation of games still illegal? Or is it just the download of roms that is illegal? I can never remember.

Anyway, illegal shit is prohibited on these forums, so if what you're talking about is against the rules, stop doing it.

Yes, thanks for the reminder that illegal shit is not cool and against the rules. Who would have thought?

Yeah, because everybody obeys the rules. In fact, it's weird that moderators are required at all, what with y'all being such fine, upstanding citizens.

Moderator
#35 Posted by agentboolen (1764 posts) -

@wgoldie: I prefer using a hacked Wii, seems to get the job done for me, all i have to do is turn it on and its ready to play (no hooking up HDMI cables). But yes tablet's are a good area for emulation these days, on the go I play Wrestlefest with the Mame android emulator.