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Introducing DREAMM 1.0 beta


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On 6/14/2022 at 12:59 AM, Serge said:

@s-island is correct - and indeed, in the Loom intro, min-jiffies is set to 0. Which is "as fast as possible".

 

You can see that the game speeds up, because the animated fires in the background speed up as well. (I wonder if that's why the animation was removed in the VGA talkie version.)

 

Edit: Oddly enough, it seems that (arguably) glitch was worked around in the non-interactive demos.

Edited by Torbjörn Andersson
Clarified which versions of Loom I meant.
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@Aaron Giles Hi Aaron. Thanks so much for this amazing program. So wonderful to have a flawless way to enjoy the games as they were released! I was wondering if you'd ever consider sharing your source on a platform like GitHub to allow other developers to assist with the development (eg. help the move to MacOS).

 

Can't wait to use this once it's supported by MacOS (even if it's just an SDL version).

 

Thanks!

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Ok, FM Towns support is ready enough to play with. Still a couple of rough edges and uncertainties, but we'll call it 1.0b4. If you have or know someone with a real FM Towns, please help connect me. Particularly unsure of the anemic music in MI2/Indy4.

 

Check out the 1.0b4 release here: https://aarongiles.com/dreamm/

 

Version:1.0b4
• Added FM Towns support for Zak/Loom/Monkey/Monkey2/Indy3/Indy4.
• Improved i386 emulator to support paging (needed for FMTowns).
• Added YM2612 and RF5C68 sound emulation (needed for FMTowns).
• Support IMA as a file extension for floppy images.
• Fix some cases where games would fail when writing save files.

 

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Just dropped the last beta of DREAMM 1.0 for final testing: https://aarongiles.com/dreamm/ At this point, all the key functionality is in. If there are any remaining issues you'd like to see fixed before 1.0 is final, this is your last chance!
 
Version:1.0b6
• Add increase/decrease video size menu items and key shortcuts (Alt-+/-).
• Display selection dialog if multiple games are detected.
• Always hide mouse in full screen mode, even outside of game area.
• Added support for Curse of Monkey Island demos.
• Allow selection of Standard/Practice/Expert modes in Loom FM Towns.
• Fix audio looping in FM Towns playback (specifically Indy Crusade water pouring).
• FM Towns games now exit cleanly via Ctrl+C.
• Reduced target MIPS and RAM size for earlier games; fixed FM Towns at 2MB.
• Fix window sizing behavior when target size is larger than the monitor size.
 
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Quote

IMHO anything that uses SDL tends to feel like a crappy low-effort port

I was reading the FAQ and was curious about this here. Are you running into limitations or noticeable overhead when using SDL? or is it simply not fun to work with, or feels like a toy, or...

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Hi Aaron! I was testing the current beta of DREAMM on COMI&demo and I noticed that I wasn't able to trigger any CTRL combination with any of the keys (e.g. CTRL-C for opening up the exit message, CTRL-T for changing the subtitle/speech mode, CTRL-B for changing the number of iMUSE buffers); is that done by design or is that a bug?

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2 hours ago, Jayel said:

I was reading the FAQ and was curious about this here. Are you running into limitations or noticeable overhead when using SDL? or is it simply not fun to work with, or feels like a toy, or...

There are several reasons:

  1. Like all cross-platform frameworks, SDL trades off compatibility for lowest common denominator. I can almost always tell when I'm running an SDL app because it has the "feel" of one in its UI behavior, and it just doesn't feel as polished as a natively written program.
  2. On top of that, DREAMM has a number of extra-game behaviors (e.g., the frontend, installation, etc) that fit better with the native GUI, versus writing custom UI controls and logic to run in an SDL context (though to be fair I ended up customizing a decent amount of the native Win32 controls, but that wasn't my initial plan).
  3. As a personal programming preference, I am generally framework-averse. My experience with most frameworks is that they get me 80-90% of what I want, but I spend an inordinate amount of time fighting that final 10-20%. It usually ends up being a wash, time-wise, and a net negative, frustration-wise.
  4. I also prefer writing code with minimal dependencies. As it sits today, all the code in DREAMM is 100% my own, and its only dependency is bog standard Win32. I'd call it lean & mean in general, though the template explosion from my i386 emulator makes the final product a bit of a chonk.

All that being said, there is enough interest in other platforms that I will probably do an experimental port to SDL in the not-too-distant future to see how well I can make it work, and also to evaluate just how much work I'm looking at for extra-game behaviors.

 

(And, now that you pushed me to articulate it, I will import this into the FAQ!)

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50 minutes ago, AndywinXp said:

Hi Aaron! I was testing the current beta of DREAMM on COMI&demo and I noticed that I wasn't able to trigger any CTRL combination with any of the keys (e.g. CTRL-C for opening up the exit message, CTRL-T for changing the subtitle/speech mode, CTRL-B for changing the number of iMUSE buffers); is that done by design or is that a bug?

Nice find! Absolutely that's a bug. I hadn't thought to check those. Should be an easy enough fix, I'm probably not reflecting the control key state properly in my faked up keydown messages.

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47 minutes ago, Aaron Giles said:

All that being said, there is enough interest in other platforms that I will probably do an experimental port to SDL in the not-too-distant future to see how well I can make it work, and also to evaluate just how much work I'm looking at for extra-game behaviors.

 

I think you might be surprised how many of us run MacOS these days -- I'm biased, but I think there's interest! :)

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Posted (edited)
Heh, I lied. Apparently threatening this as the "final" beta brought out a bunch of bug reports, a few of which needed more invasive fixes. So we'll do (hopefully) one more beta before calling 1.0.
 
Get 1.0b7 here: https://aarongiles.com/dreamm/ 
 

Version:1.0b7
• Fix modifier keys (shift/control) in Curse of Monkey Island.
• Fix bug in copying from physical media; allow for multiple CDs when copying.
• Bump memory for Indy Fate and the Ultimate Talkie Monkeys to 2MB since they can use EMS.
• Add CD-ROM menu when game is run from a CD image or physical CD-ROM.
• Fix mouse cursor in Maniac Mansion when run from within Day of the Tentacle.
• Fix video detection in early games when Tandy sound is not selected.
• Suppress error messages for CoMI disc 2 and for Maniac Mansion when found within Day of the Tentacle.

 

Edited by Aaron Giles
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Thanks Aaron! In the meantime, your application has already replaced DOSBox and my Windows 95 VM as my personal way for checking the original behavior of the games. DREAMM is so quick to use that I'll probably never be bothered again to fire up DOSBox for that purpose.

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