Archive December 2019

Project Lunar – Folders, multi console stock UI support inbound + Giveaway

Post 1.0.0 Road Map – Folder Support, Multi Console support & Free Sega Genesis Mini Giveaway!

Hi everyone! We would like to thank everyone for their input and feedback. We feel we have had a very successful launch and the feedback we have been getting has been great, we officially had our busiest release ever! We have had in 72 hours since release: 2,800,000 hits on our front end site and approximately 60,000 installer downloads! To say this is mind blowing to us would be an understatement.

We have made three desktop updates fixing bugs since release. With only one issue remaining (savestates) and common user issues like users unable to install the app initially (waiting for reboot).

To touch on the “waiting for reboot” problem quickly, we identified an issue on the first release where it would make it more likely for users to receive the “waiting for reboot” problem, however, we have fixed it with the .44 release of the desktop app. If you still have issues and have not updated since then… Do so now! The other causes of this problem are the same as if you were to use the (S)NESC. We will set up a troubleshooting guide shortly to help people out but it would appear a lot of those issues are quietening down now so that is good.

So what’s next?

We are excited to tell you that we are already working on 3 major components:

  • Savestate overhaul
  • True folder support
  • External console support for stock UI

All these features are currently being worked on and will be rolled out asap within rolling updates very soon.

Savestate overhaul:

Since the release of PL 1.0.0 after some in-depth analysis, we have found a major flaw within M2’s stock savestate code. It would appear when the MD Mini software was being developed it was bolted on top of the SEGA Classics PS3/XBOX360 codeset and by a different team internally within M2. Because of this, they made a huge mistake with the savestates and how they are managed. (This flaw actually affects stock units and can corrupt saves!)

With this flaw in place, it means no one is able to make proper folder support and have the stock emulator working normally. It’s also causing some weird positioning of savestates issues for some users of PL 1.0.0.
True Blue doesn’t have this issue as they statically (and illegally) bundle all their ROM data files in to separate locations. Because these ROM data files don’t change the problem doesn’t exist; It only affects users who add and remove games. Go figure!

Good news though! After 10 hours of debugging and a lot of math (A LOT OF MATH!), we have finally worked out how to resolve the flaw and improve it. We also worked out the SRAM formatting so technically you should be able to export and import SRAM save files to and from the console at some point.
We are currently rewriting a good chunk of the stock code and logic to fix this problem. As soon as the issue is verified as fixed it will be rolled out immediately to all.

TRUE Folder support:

This is a big one. The reality is, we could have implemented folder support for 1.0.0 however we decided against it. Thank god we did, seeing as we only noticed the savestate flaw after release! The main reason we did this is because the folder method would have sucked.
In summary, the bad solution is:

  • Detect a button combo/game selection and close the m2engage program
  • Redirect the m2engage binary to a different ROM data file and indexing file
  • Reload the m2engage binary as if it was just booting up

Why does this suck? Mainly because it’s not fluid and not versatile.
You are effectively closing the program, reloading the data and then waiting at least another 5 seconds in between “folder” transitions whilst staring at a black screen. This is basically “pseudo” folders. We want to take it a step further.

We are currently rewriting a chunk of the stock UI code to allow multiple “pages” within the UI. This means we will be able to construct multiple pages that contain their own index arrays and assets, instead of having to close the app, reload, then start the app with a new data set. We will aim to manage the whole process within the stock UI and have it refresh without the need to reload. Meaning that it will all be animated and seamless as possible with minimal wait time.

It should be noted proper folder support along with stock m2engage emulator support (with adding/removing games) will not be possible until someone overhauls the stock savestate system.

Work has already been carried out on this and shouldn’t take very long to implement. We are currently waiting on the savestate overhaul to finish to continue. In the meantime we are mocking folder artwork for the console. Below are some mock ups (ARTWORK IS NOT FINAL!):

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/625743493406523403/661705971759841373/unknown.png

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/625743493406523403/661706170418855967/unknown.png

Multi console support for the stock UI

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/405372357298094082/661629155938402331/unknown.png
As stated before, a lot of this code was actually coded into Project Lunar 1.0.0. We delayed it so we could concentrate on day 1 bug fixes and QOL improvements. Now we are effectively near the end of the 1.0.0 bug fixing, we are going to roll out the multi console support for the stock UI in a rolling update coming very soon.

This will mean that you can add any console game you want, be able to use the scraper on it and easily select what RetroArch core you would like it to be run from. It means you will be able to play any other console from your stock UI and have it look, feel and function like normal but have RetroArch powering the emulation in the background from the stock UI.

https://media.discordapp.net/attachments/625743493406523403/661697460678164480/unknown.png

Small other features being added in upcoming rolling updates:

  • Addition of Stock UI BootMenu/RA item toggle
  • Theme toggle: Switch between JPN and US/EUR themes with currently selected language
  • Couple more QOL fixes and improvements to the Mod Manager
  • EmulationStation tighten up, make it easier to use and add items

And lastly…

To celebrate a successful launch and the coming of the new year. We are giving away a FREE SEGA Genesis Mini!

All you need to do is to react to this announcement post link in the discord with the project lunar emoji and you will be entered in the draw to win a free SEGA Genesis Mini (US model).

Entries close on the 31st of January. So make sure you jump in the discord server and react to that post to be entered.

Final note:

Thanks again for everyone’s kind words and support in these recent days. As always we are available for support on the discord server and if you need any help just ask and we will try our best to get to you as soon as we can!

ModMyClassic + The Project Lunar team

Project Lunar 1.0.0 has landed.

It’s been over 3 months of LONG days and nights but Project Lunar 1.0.0 is now officially live and available for all!

We know many of you would have wanted this release sooner but we wanted to ensure the first release was ready, and we could provide a safe and more-stable solution from the onset. (With a crap ton of features of course!)

 

WHAT TO EXPECT

With all of the hours of development and testing, does this mean 1.0.0 is bug free? Of course not! Is it safe? Absolutely. Is it stable? Yes. (…as long as it is used in the way that is expected!)

With 1 ½ months spent debugging, testing and 100+ people testing this release with 1000s of installs and uninstalls with no major fires we have covered a lot of ground… But, we are not able to cover every single permutation and possible installation scenario. Expect a bug or two to crop up with the public release.

Project 1.0.0 should be considered a Public BETA. Please set your expectations accordingly.

Now that is out the way… We are super happy with the outcome and while there is still a long way to go with Project Lunar, and more exciting features we wish to implement, we are glad we can finally share our work to the public.

 

SUPPORT + HELP

We have archived and cleared the #sega-support channel in our discord in preparation for the masses of the questions and queries. PLEASE BEAR WITH US! It’s still the holidays and someone will try and respond to you as soon as they can.

Please ensure any support questions or general inquiries are posted in the #segasupport channel of the ModMyClassic discord so we can deal with it in one location. This is your best chance of getting help quicker!

Please also note that it’s 99% impossible to brick your console. If you blindly go crazy trying all manner of things, you might find yourself needing some more advanced help from the devs or testers. If this happens don’t panic. As stated previously, 99% of potential bug issues can be sorted. Bring your description of your problem and ask in the support channel. Wait patiently and someone will try and resolve your issue ASAP.

One final note, please read the FAQ and troubleshooting sections of the Project Lunar page as they will likely answer your question, before posting in the discord. We’ll try to document any further common topics as they arise.

 

HOW TO USE / DOWNLOAD

Before you download Project Lunar, we highly recommend you read through the documentation and FAQs to ensure you fully understand how Project Lunar works. We have also provided a full feature run down which covers:

  • What is included in 1.0.0
  • What is NOT included in 1.0.0
  • What is planned/WIP for 1.1.0

Please read them here:

https://modmyclassic.com/project-lunar/#Project_Lunar_feature_list

https://modmyclassic.com/project-lunar/#FAQ

https://modmyclassic.com/project-lunar/#How_to_use_Project_Lunar_Documentation

There are also a few initial tutorial videos which can be found below:

https://modmyclassic.com/project-lunar/#Video_How-To_Tutorials 

Once you read the how-to documentation and are ready to proceed, you can find the download links here:

https://modmyclassic.com/project-lunar/#Where_to_Download

 

ONE MORE FINAL NOTE

We would like to thank everyone for their patience and support while we have been slaving away on this project. We would also like to make a HUGE thank you to the supporters of ModMyClassic and Project Lunar.

We hope you have a great time with Project Lunar and have as much fun with it as we did making it for the community.

ModMyClassic + The Project Lunar team

 

Now™ Project Lunar is in RC1 testing!

After effectively 3 months of non-stop work and sleepless nights, Project Lunar has officially hit 1.0.0 RC1! We will be providing Project Lunar 1.0 RC1 for closed public testing this Monday. (16 December 2019 (TODAY))

This closed public testing and early access will be made available to supporters of MMC and up to 10 other candidates. (more info below). We anticipate that the RC1 test period will last 2 weeks.

In the very unlikely scenario that there are no overwhelming reports of bugs, (Project Lunar is version 1.0.0 so we expect a few of them!) we will release the public 1.0 release to everyone early. This also means if there are a TON of issues during public testing that cannot be addressed during the two-week RC1 testing period, the RC1 testing period will be extended.

If you wish to be part of the additional 10 RC1 testers (on a once they are gone, they are gone basis) please react to announcement message in the MMC discord #lunar-news with the “Project Lunar” emoji. Those 10 people will be randomly and fairly selected this coming Wednesday.

We have had a team of over 30+ people testing the payload & desktop app builds over the last month and while the devs and testers feel the tool is stable, we are not able to account for every single permutation and scenario. There will be a period of bug fixes when PL hits shelves. Please remember this project is effectively only three months in the making!

With that said, we are happy with the outcome of the tool and nearly every feature we hoped for managed to make into the 1.0 release. We have a few more issues with additional features we are working out that we couldn’t fix in the timelines we have been aiming for and a few things that we decided to postpone till after 1.0 release, however, this list is minimal.

We want to be as transparent as possible, so along with this release and feature list, we will be clearly providing the caveats and shortcomings of Project Lunar 1.0 and our roadmap for the next release.

We would like to thank you all for your patience and support. We really hope that you will be able to enjoy our work and that you will be able to get some more enjoyment from your mini.

ModMyClassic + The Project Lunar Team