Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by elvis, Aug 22, 2018.
wonder if the mister can do this kind of thing. That would be cool if so.
I think it would be more difficult? (Dunno, guessing). MiSTer is more about simulating hardware, and the side effect is that you can play games accurately as a result. To modify the sampling of thing like DSP and SuperFX chips "in hardware" would be less flexible than software where you can just define things on the fly a little easier, or call helper routines to do things outside of the emulation loop.
I'm fairly certain we'll see chip overclocking available in MiSTer one day (which will make games like Starfox/Starwing a bit nicer). But I think this sort of thing is the exclusive domain of software emulators.
Very cool on the mode 7 stuff. Seems the higan dev is keen on it too.
I had a quick toy with it on mario kart and the default 4x setting makes everything sharp as hell.
Interesting to see, but too sharp to be honest. Setting it at 2x cleans the image up nicely without making it look completely out of place.
Would love to see how it would come out at 4x, then scaled back and spat out to a crt.
2x / 4x comparison.
Wow this is awesome.
Will need to see how DKC looks!
More from the bsnes/higan author on this new feature, and the enormous CPU grunt it takes to do so accurately:
oh yeah, just compiled the latest bsnes and gave 2160p mode 7 (only rendering the game itself at 960p) a try on my system.... Not wrong about needing a thread-ripper.
My poor firstname.lastname@example.orgGHz all core overclock hitting ~90% cpu usage and running mario kart at maybe half speed.
Ahh this is progressing fast, multiple fixes in bsnes 107.3 for various games and a mode 7 supersampling option that downscales back to 240p again to clean things up without making them look out of place.
I kind of skipped over this in the OP, so here's a short expansion on SNES add-on chips (and some related news).
When it comes to cartridge based consoles like the SNES, don't think of the cartridge like storage or a hard disk in a modern computer. Instead, think of it more like a PCI-E slot, where the cartridge connects directly into the heart of the console, extending the hardware. That means that anything can be connected, whether it's storage or another processor.
Some cartridges included add-on chips that added features or improved performance in games. The DSP chip found in Pilotwings and Super Mario Kart is a famous one that sped up scaling and rotation. Another was the SuperFX chip that added rudimentary floating point and polygon support for titles like Starfox/Starwing.
A more complete list is here:
An interesting chip was the SA-1 chip. The core is nearly identical to the SNES's internal Ricoh 5A22 CPU (based on the 65C816, also found in the Apple IIgs), but is substantially faster (almost three times the clock speed of the SNES's main CPU), has faster RAM addressing (with it's own private 2KB of RAM), adds new arithmetic functions and other features. It was most famously used in the west for Super Mario RPG (a combined Nintendo/Square RPG game) and visual effects in two late Kirby releases.
What makes it interesting is just how similar it is to the SNES's main CPU. So similar, in fact, that several people came up with the idea of "porting" regular SNES games to the SA-1.
But why? Well, the SNES's very slow main CPU (3.58MHz - compare that to the Megadrive/Genesis 7.6MHz) meant that developers had to get creative to make fast-moving, complex games work well. Especially early in the SNES's life, slowdown was prominent in titles, which hurt the console's reputation for a number of early games.
So now with the advent of flash carts and FPGA consoles that can simulate the SA-1, "porting" games that suffer bad slowdown to the SA-1 results in highly compatible titles, but with almost all of the slowdown removed.
Gradius III is one such game, and the developer doing the port has now nominated the title as stable in an update:
More on his GitHub:
Here's a visual comparison. The SA-1 version runs at a solid, smooth 60FPS no matter what's happening on screen.
That's awesome although the slowdown is the only way you can survive sometimes, at least in my case.
Can't wait to see more SA-1 hacks. Imagine Super Ghouls n Ghosts with the slowdown eliminated.
So many early titles that could benefit from it. Super R-Type was another.
Each hack is heavily title dependent, although this one apparently came about after 2-3 months of work.
Word from the dev is that it works well on the SD2SNES and any hardware it'll play in, but there are problems in MiSTer. I'm quite certain MiSTer cores are far from accurate at this stage, so hopefully it'll help out the MiSTer project now that other people are looking at things from another viewpoint.
Let me make your day
really liking this thread atm. great info inside.