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Old 20 August 2013, 21:35   #1
FrodeSolheim
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FS-UAE Game Center

It is time to announce that FS-UAE Game Center can be tested for those willing to

What is it?

I's a fullscreen game browser which uses FS-UAE to actually play the games, and it provides auto-configuration of games via the oagd.net game database. Game covers and screenshots are automatically downloaded. This is what it looks like:



FS-UAE Game Center is included with the latest development releases (http://fs-uae.net/download-devel).

It isn’t fully self-contained yet - it requires you to use FS-UAE Launcher at least initially to set up the game database and scan your system for game files. When you see discovered games pop up in FS-UAE Launcher, you can shut down FS-UAE Launcher and start FS-UAE Game Center instead - and the same games will be available there

The user interface is controllable by both keyboard and joysticks/gamepads - much like the FS-UAE onscreen menu. It is also designed to have a look-and feel similar to FS-UAE. When working optimally, FS-UAE Game Center will transition to FS-UAE and back smoothly (in some desktop environments), and if you did not know any better, you’d think it was all just one single program. FS-UAE Game Center was obviously designed as a “ten foot interface”, but may very well use it on your desktop computer too if you prefer.

Save games, save states and other files are stored in the same location as used by FS-UAE Launcher, so you should be able to switch between using FS-UAE Launcher and FS-UAE Game Center without problems.

However - this is “alpha-quality” software. It will most likely work for you, but there are some rough edges, some missing features, and in worst case, it won’t work properly for you yet.

Here are some known problems or issues:

- When more than one game variant is available for a game, you are not able to select which variant to launch (and you don’t get to see which is selected either). But the chosen variant is the same as the preferred variant in FS-UAE Launcher - that is - the highest rated game variant or your starred one.

- The input device selection screen is not pretty yet.

- Type-ahead search is currently deactivated. Browsing thousands of games when you have a keyboard available is thus unnecessarily inefficient.

- Filtering features such as filtering by tag, year, publisher, etc are currently deactivated.

- On some desktop environments, there may still be some slight flickering when starting / exiting FS-UAE. Not really a bug as such, but not as elegant as when it switches seamlessly.

- FS-UAE Game Center does not pick up your global preferences from FS-UAE Launcher yet.

- The code is quite messy, so don’t look at it unless you have a good reason The code has gone through several prototypes over several years, and is in need of a good cleanup. The most important thing is of course that it works, not how it looks.

- There are some issues with window focus and/or desktop panels covering FS-UAE Game Center partially when running under Gnome 3.

Getting Started

To get started, you should first set up FS-UAE Launcher to work with the online game database. See http://oagd.net/fs-uae-launcher for how to activate this. The get a smoother in-game-center experience, you can pre-download most covers and screenshots from oagd.net from here: http://oagd.net/download, though images are downloaded on demand if necessary. As a bonus, the image download pack will be used by FS-UAE Launcher as well!

FS-UAE Game Center should work on all operating systems where FS-UAE runs (more or less). I currently provide pre-built packages for Windows, Mac OS X and Ubuntu.

Last edited by FrodeSolheim; 20 August 2013 at 21:40.
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Old 21 August 2013, 14:20   #2
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Truly excellent work FrodeSolheim
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Old 21 August 2013, 18:07   #3
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I installed the game-center under Arch Linux yesterday. I made a PKGBUILD based on the fs-uae-launcher-devel-PKGBUILD by gimi. The package built fine, but when it comes to installing, the package manager complains about already existing files. These files belong to the launcher. I had to force overwrite it, not a good solution.
Did you have any trouble making ubuntu packages? It may be the same situation here.

Regarding the gc itself: Very impressive!
Runs very stable for pre-alpha software. I only noticed one single segfault, while trying to quit. Don't know where it came from...

I also like the Guru. (Caused by an unmounted volume, so not really a bug.)

The gc doesn't go full-screen when it starts. It just opens a big window with the size of the screen. So no EWMH for linux? If I do fs manually, fs-uae doesn't get the focus when launching a game.
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Old 21 August 2013, 19:24   #4
FrodeSolheim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbl007 View Post
Regarding the gc itself: Very impressive!
Runs very stable for pre-alpha software. I only noticed one single segfault, while trying to quit. Don't know where it came from...
I have gotten one or two of these myself, but unfortunately never while in a debugger

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbl007 View Post
I also like the Guru. (Caused by an unmounted volume, so not really a bug.)
I am particularly pleased with that screen It's also red if an unrecoverable exception occurs in the main thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbl007 View Post
The gc doesn't go full-screen when it starts. It just opens a big window with the size of the screen. So no EWMH for linux? If I do fs manually, fs-uae doesn't get the focus when launching a game.
Right now it uses a fullscreen window. It also instructs FS-UAE to run in a fullscreen window (fullscreen_mode=window). So what happened when you modified GC to run in proper fullscreen, FS-UAE will not get focus. Try also removing this line from fengestad/game/amiga/AmigaGameHandler.py:
self.launch_handler.config["fullscreen_mode"] = "window"

Many window managers interpret a fullscreen-sized window as a "legacy fullscreen", and in many cases it works better than a traditional fullscreen mode (alt-tab works properly, etc). Also, some environments don't seem to like starting a real fullscreen application from an already fullscreen application (though I can't now remember which). Bottom line is that I have quite a bit of testing to do in order to find out what works best in different desktop environments. There are two criteria I'm using:
1. Whether it works
2. If the transitions from FS-UAE Game Center to FS-UAE and back are smooth and flickerless.

(1) is obviously more important, but I'm a bit picky about (2) as well, so I try to make that work wherever possible. I'll document the progress on this one, and fullscreen type (etc) may have to be configurable if I cannot automatically deduce whats best on a given system.

Last edited by FrodeSolheim; 21 August 2013 at 20:16.
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Old 21 August 2013, 19:45   #5
FrodeSolheim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbl007 View Post
I installed the game-center under Arch Linux yesterday. I made a PKGBUILD based on the fs-uae-launcher-devel-PKGBUILD by gimi. The package built fine, but when it comes to installing, the package manager complains about already existing files. These files belong to the launcher. I had to force overwrite it, not a good solution.
Did you have any trouble making ubuntu packages? It may be the same situation here.
See http://eab.abime.net/support-fs-uae/...packagers.html for information about how to best resolve the package file conflict

Last edited by FrodeSolheim; 21 August 2013 at 20:17.
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Old 21 August 2013, 20:19   #6
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if one just download the fs-uae-game-launcher from your ppa on *buntu
the progam just dies with "ImportError: No module named OpenGL.GL"

installing python-opengl fixes it and the gamecenter works. so maybe putting a depend to for python-opengl to fs-uae-game-center may avoid confusion for people which havent installed the package already.
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Old 21 August 2013, 20:23   #7
FrodeSolheim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thevoice View Post
installing python-opengl fixes it and the gamecenter works. so maybe putting a depend to for python-opengl to fs-uae-game-center may avoid confusion for people which havent installed the package already.
Thanks for reporting! I used the fs-uae-launcher deb packaging as template and obviously forgot to test the dependencies. Will make it right for 2.3.5

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbl007 View Post
The gc doesn't go full-screen when it starts. It just opens a big window with the size of the screen. So no EWMH for linux?
By the way, what desktop environment / window manager?
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Old 21 August 2013, 20:32   #8
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Wow, Thanks for this!
 
Old 21 August 2013, 21:55   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrodeSolheim View Post
Try also removing this line from fengestad/game/amiga/AmigaGameHandler.py:
self.launch_handler.config["fullscreen_mode"] = "window"
I changed this line to "pass" (just removing didn't work because of the if... above) but it didn't change anything. I used fullscreen_mode=window earlier without the game center for fs-uae and i didn't got any problems. -> I get a fullscreen fs-uae. Faked fullscreen or not - I don't care. :-)
I have the feeling, this isn't just a fullscreen/focus-problem. It seems to me, fs-uae doesn't get started at all if the game center is real-fullscreen forced by the window manager.
I use i3 by the way and found a really dirty workaround for now. I think nobody wants to know this, but I post i anyway.

modified AmigaGameHandler.py:
Code:
if fs.linux:
    self.launch_handler.config["title"] = "fs-uae-gc"
added to ~/.i3/config:
Code:
for_window [title="FS Game Center"] floating enable
for_window [title="FS Game Center"] border none
for_window [title="fs-uae-gc"] fullscreen enable
Is there a config only used by the game-center? So I don't need to change the source code...
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Old 21 August 2013, 22:34   #10
FrodeSolheim
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There's no settings file for game-center yet, but that is something which will be given priority.

As I said, some window managers don't seem to like fullscreen applications being started when another application is already fullscreen, and perhaps a hack *is* needed for i3. I suppose the most reliable way to do it would be to close the game center window, then start FS-UAE, and re-open a new fullscreen game center window once FS-UAE quits. But this will of course not look nice. Another universal method would be to have FS-UAE Game Center merely maximized (with window decorations), not fullscreen. But this too.. not as nice.

For now, I'll include i3 on a list of window managers which may need workarounds - and there'll be configurable options to set fullscreen types without tweaking source code

For other users reading this, don't be scared. This is not a problem on for example Windows and Mac OS X where I test that it works and everyone basically use the same windowing system

But on Linux, there are a myriad of window managers / desktop environments - with slightly different behavior. I currently use the MATE desktop on Linux, where the current behavior works very well. If I don't have a top panel at all (only bottom panel), the application transition is flickerless - but with a top panel you'll see that one flicker briefly when FS-UAE quits back to game center. I'll be testing the game center with other Linux desktop environments...
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Old 21 August 2013, 22:40   #11
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Thank you Frode this looks very good.

Seems like it takes inspiration from Hyperspin
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Old 21 August 2013, 22:53   #12
FrodeSolheim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by isamu View Post
Seems like it takes inspiration from Hyperspin
I wouldn't say so - I don't know if they have more in common than both being fullscreen applications which starts games (and I guess there are dozens or hundreds more which fit that description). I have never tried Hyperspin though, so perhaps there are more similarities than I think

That being said, I don't care much whether they are similar or not, I'm only concerned with making some nice and useful which works! While already quite nice, I think the Game Center will be really nice with better browsing features and more polish
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Old 22 August 2013, 00:16   #13
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Awesome, thanks for this shiny new toy!
It really runs nice here on arch linux with xfce. transition between gc and fs-uae is verry smooth.

2 quick questions:
Is there a way to get rid of the directories created in the homedir called 'Documents' and 'Games'
(i use a changed base_dir)?
Is there a way to start fs-uae with a custom config from gc?
Looks like my Default.fs-uae file is not used when spawned from gc gui.

thanks!
cheers rsl
 
Old 22 August 2013, 00:41   #14
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Is it in the debian development download? the version number is lower than stable?
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Old 22 August 2013, 21:04   #15
FrodeSolheim
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Originally Posted by rsl View Post
Awesome, thanks for this shiny new toy!
It really runs nice here on arch linux with xfce. transition between gc and fs-uae is verry smooth.
Excellent

Quote:
Originally Posted by rsl View Post
2 quick questions:
Is there a way to get rid of the directories created in the homedir called 'Documents' and 'Games'
(i use a changed base_dir)?
Yes, see http://fs-uae.net/paths ("Base Directory"). FS-UAE Game Center supports the same options as FS-UAE and FS-UAE Launcher

Quote:
Originally Posted by rsl View Post
Is there a way to start fs-uae with a custom config from gc?
Looks like my Default.fs-uae file is not used when spawned from gc gui.
You're looking for a way to specify override settings, right? Anyway, not supported yet but that will be possible. This initial version is relatively non-configurable.

Last edited by FrodeSolheim; 22 August 2013 at 23:24.
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Old 22 August 2013, 23:24   #16
FrodeSolheim
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Originally Posted by dtr1001 View Post
Is it in the debian development download? the version number is lower than stable?
Debian packages are now updated (not tested), see http://fs-uae.net/download-devel (under "Other Linux") or go here: http://software.opensuse.org/downloa...package=fs-uae
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Old 23 August 2013, 00:43   #17
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dumb question but how do you launch it in debian? EDIT: ---sorted now tx

I have to say this really is first class - you are very creative

Last edited by FrodeSolheim; 23 August 2013 at 08:33. Reason: Merged posts
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Old 23 August 2013, 15:13   #18
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I have to say this really is first class - you are very creative
Agreed!
Hopefully Frode doesn't get sued by Apple. This "coverflow-style" is patented, isn't it?
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Old 24 August 2013, 01:27   #19
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You have revolutionised this gaming experience!
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Old 24 August 2013, 16:50   #20
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Originally Posted by FrodeSolheim View Post
Yes, see http://fs-uae.net/paths ("Base Directory&quot. FS-UAE Game Center supports the same options as FS-UAE and FS-UAE Launcher
I already have a ~/.config/fs-uae/base-dir file which works ok for fs-uae and the launcher, but nevertheless game-center creates new 'Documents' and 'Games' folders in my home-dir.
 
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