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GAMES.YAK.ONL SYS$:: Vintage systems emulation, Linux, retro, and web game data, releases.

# Current & retro and small-format gaming. Send in news, reviews or releases info.


Random tips on Emulators

  1. RULE #1 - Emulator gaming is fun and relatively simple when it comes to loading roms (aka games and programs). However, nothing is perfect and akin to many things modern day for the intelligent computing enthusiast and retro-gamer, you'll want to be aware of fallback options when it comes to controllers, emulators, core operating systems and options. While most things will just work, it is advised to have at least a couple different brand controllers as well as emulators (or versions on hand) as well as create, label and keep config/settings files.
  2. Below are random tips. on various emulator, individual games, etc. If you wish to share, please leave a comment (see bottom of page) and I can possibly add to tips section.
  • C64/VIC-20/C128/PET Emulators:
  • Q: How do I run these emulators?
  • A: After installing, the executables (for example either linux or windows) are pre-pended with 'x':
  • x64 (Commodore 64); x64dtv; x64sc; x128; xcbm2; xcbm25x0; xpet; xplus4; xscpu64; xvic (Vic-20); vsid (sid player)
  • Just enter in terminal what you want to run, example "x64" or "x64 &disown" to launch the C64. Or launch the windows executable. You can also always use right-click context menu "Open with" specifying the executable to open and auto-run any image/rom depending on availability of feature on your system or file manager.
  • Q: What is the best emulator?
  • A: VICE. The best current version is v3.1 or greater. BUT... especially if you are on linux, you can use the linux v3 or greater version with full-screen. winVICE (portable, runs under WINE) but can taxes CPU usage if you are using a low RAM system. VICE (Linux) v3.1-1 has finally resolved with v3.1 full-screen issues, mostly. Avoid VICE v2.x versions on linux like the plague. VICE version > 3.0 should now be fully compatible with X systems, and full-screen. I made the mistake of installing a GTK-toolkit version 2.x, so let me save you tons of time.
  • RETROBYTES TI-99/4A ONLINE EMULATOR: the basics/updates.
  • The TI-99 emulator hosted on RETROBYTES required Javascript and was developed by Rasmus-M' and his great emulator --- of which there are bound to be similar setups out there. However, we are customizing and may be altering, adding additional keyboard commands, etc so ours may not be exactly the same as the common versions found elsewhere. Our emulator was launched November 2017 so it is currently and actively being customized. Stay tuned and watch for updates and reference year. Many more tutorials, tips and reference to come.
  • HELP
  • If you need help, for the moment it might be best to simply email Raam0 via the RETROBYTES address.
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: about using online emulators!
  • Remember you are dealing with loading assets off a web server, in relation to your cpu power and browser reliability (including possible browser leakage). If you experience issues, limit what you have running in the background, reboot your browser fresh, etc. RELAX, let THE EMULATOR + ANY SOFTWARE load up, give a few extra seconds and slow down --- retro style for the best experience!
  • Do not rush games loading fully by clicking impatiently or trying to rush the software after it appears. Disruptions impeding the proper performance of the software, such as speech capability or buggy behavior can be induced from either latency from stress from your cpu and web browser!
  • To load a game or piece of software, either select from 'Software' menus or attach and load your own file. The emulator will then shortly reset. Hit 'Spacebar' and the TI-99/4A Menu will display. For standard games in menu, select its respective # choice in menu.
  • The default or rather standard, typical control commands for games/software is [Q] for fire, [Arrow keys] for movement. You may also want to try [Spacebar] for alternative fire.
  • Games needed instruction or alternative keyboard commands will eventually be documented and offered on RETROBYTES. We just launched so it may take a bit. If you want to contribute tutorials, instructions or tips, please email.
  • The second main tier of 'commands' that some games/software integrate are 'FUNCTION' keys. The are accessed via [ALT] + [NUMBER KEY]. On your keyboard, if one [SHIFT] or [ALT] is not recognized, try the other. For which function keys are which, refer to the reference keyboard and 'reference strip' above humber key. You will not keys like 'REDO' or 'BACK.' For example if a program asks you to 'hit BACK' you will want to hold [ALT] and then tap [9] on your keyboard. Currently, not sure if all functions keys perform (depends on program conversion I think) unless prompted by program.
  • Again stay tuned, more to come including fun things you can term utilizing the TI-99's basic programming and built-in command set!
  • VICE: How to load .PRG files in VICE 3.1 or greater, C64/VIC20:
  • File > Attach cartridge image... > Add to generic... > 4/8kb image at $A000
  • Should it be simpler and more obvious than this?? Of course. Why it isn't as of 2017, is beyond me.
  • VICE: Keyboard controls:
  • Commodore CTRL key is mapped to modern PC keyboard TAB
  • Commodore key is mapped to the LEFT CTRL
  • RUN/STOP key is mapped to the ESC key
  • (PET emu uses LEFT CTRL key as RUN/STOP and the ESC key as ESC)
  • TI-99 / TI-99/Sim Emulators:
  • Our retrobytes, custom hosted web-based install with tons of tested carts and disks:
  • VISIT HERE --> retrobytes' TI-99/4A Emulator. Our hosted emulator periodically being refined as well as updated with new disks and cartridges including tips, instructions, etc..
  • TI-99/Sim Keyboard REF
  • A few basics for example Arch Linux install (I will update this section periodically):
  • The path of install is /opt/ti99sim/
  • There are 4 folders: bin (emulator and a few utilities); cartridges (for .ctg); console; disks.
  • The common basic is that you want to run games and in cartridge format. Often the roms you will find are .bin files. These need to be converted to .ctg, which then can be placed in the cartridges folder. Upon rebooting the emulator, the menu will now show the .ctg roms that you can run.
  • In /bin there is a utility to convert .bin to .ctg called 'convert-ctg.' To convert open a terminal in folder of .bin game files and run: []$ convert-ctg huntthewumpus.bin
  • This will convert and output the file in same working directory to huntthewumpus.ctg
  • You can then manually copy the .ctg to the cartridges folder and reboot the TI-99/Sim emulator, copy via terminal, ex. []$ sudo cp huntthewumpus.ctg /opt/ti99sim/cartridges
  • Tip: you can of course batch convert, ex. []$ concert-ctg *.bin; etc.
  • Apple ][e linapple Emulator:
  • Q: OK, I booted the application, how do I load software?
  • A: There are two crucial keys: F2 to reset or reset and load an attached disk (dsk) image. F3 or F4 will open open a file manager for you to nav and select with arrow keys and Enter/Return.

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