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Offline calc84maniac

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TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« on: April 23, 2017, 06:04:11 pm »
Hey, so some of you already knew this, but I'm working on a TI-Boy iteration for the TI-84+ CE. Still Game Boy only and no Game Boy Color, at least for now, but I'm bringing in automatic colorization like when you play GB games on a real GBC.

Thanks to the extra RAM in this system I'm able to get all fancy with dynamic recompilation for the CPU and use caches to speed up graphics rendering, so the end result is an emulator that can actually hit fullspeed and 60 frames per second for some games, and fullspeed with frameskip for others. Not to mention, unlike previous versions of TI-Boy I'm implementing accurate cycle timing in the emulation, which is dramatically improving ROM compatibility.

I can get into more of the specifics of how it works under the hood in future posts, if you want to hear it. This thread could become a sort of development blog, I suppose.

As for remaining emulation features, I do want to implement Real Time Clock emulation for cartridges that support it, as well as basic emulation for the link port hardware that prevents games from freezing when attempting to start a transfer. There's also a bug in partial-frame sprite rendering that I need to address, and probably other things I haven't thought of yet.

On the user interface side, I still need to put in support for saving the current configuration (e.g. frameskip and palette settings), either on a global or per-game basis. Save states would be nice too, but I'm not sure if they need to be in the initial release.

At any rate, I've put up a preview video that you can view in glorious 60FPS :)

"Most people ask, 'What does a thing do?' Hackers ask, 'What can I make it do?'" - Pablos Holman

Offline Eeems

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2017, 11:05:42 pm »
Well this is very exciting :D
/e

Offline Syrusse

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2017, 05:26:37 am »
Amazing, I'm literally speechless !


Are you planning about a release ? (well, I'm gonna be honest I'm not really intersted by it because I don't have a 83/84 CE :p) but still if you're planning to do so, I guess I'll sell my TI84se xD

By the way, I'm curious, how do you make a rom compatible with the emulator ? Just as the ti84se way ?

Offline Sorunome

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2017, 11:45:09 am »
Wow, this is looking amazing!

THE GAME
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Offline Art_of_camelot

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2017, 02:59:10 pm »
Ti-boy has always been a fascinating technical achievement to me. It should be a much more enjoyable experience with the increased power, resolution and color that the new model offes. I hope you'll continue to post about it here as you make progress. :)

*Edit* Just watched the video... Wow... Metroid runs super smoothly! :O There seems to be a diagonal line that crosses the screen every now and then. Any idea what's up with that? I know you said you aren't supporting Game boy Color yet, but what about DX games that run on both systems(the black cartridges). Will it be possible to have them in color? A few notable examples that come to mind are the Pokemon Gold and silver games, Zelda DX, and Dragon Warrior I&II.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2017, 03:06:51 pm by Art_of_camelot »

Offline calc84maniac

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2017, 09:08:02 pm »
Ti-boy has always been a fascinating technical achievement to me. It should be a much more enjoyable experience with the increased power, resolution and color that the new model offes. I hope you'll continue to post about it here as you make progress. :)

*Edit* Just watched the video... Wow... Metroid runs super smoothly! :O There seems to be a diagonal line that crosses the screen every now and then. Any idea what's up with that? I know you said you aren't supporting Game boy Color yet, but what about DX games that run on both systems(the black cartridges). Will it be possible to have them in color? A few notable examples that come to mind are the Pokemon Gold and silver games, Zelda DX, and Dragon Warrior I&II.

The diagonal line is an issue with TI's LCD setup, you'd see it with any CE game that does any kind of full-screen changes like scrolling. (Well, unless the game uses a recently-discovered method for having a column-major framebuffer, but that's not in the cards for TI-Boy for performance reasons.)

Those games you mentioned would be playable as they were on the GB, but not full-color like on the GBC (because they typically do make use of GBC-specific features). You'd still be able to select a color palette like with any other GB game, though.
"Most people ask, 'What does a thing do?' Hackers ask, 'What can I make it do?'" - Pablos Holman

Offline Art_of_camelot

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2017, 09:52:24 pm »
That's strange about the diagonal line. It's not super noticeable, I just thought it was a bit odd. Too bad that the DX style games use GBC features when in full color. I didn't realize that. :(

Offline Skeletal Charizard

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 11:30:33 am »
So in the future would it be possible to be able to make GBC games compatible with the Ti-84 CE? Because if so that would be wonderful to able to play games like Metal Gear Solid Ghost Babel or even the rom hack Pokémon Prism.

Offline calc84maniac

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2017, 08:38:07 pm »
So in the future would it be possible to be able to make GBC games compatible with the Ti-84 CE? Because if so that would be wonderful to able to play games like Metal Gear Solid Ghost Babel or even the rom hack Pokémon Prism.
Possible? Probably. It would likely have worse performance, though (which frameskip might be able to mitigate to some extent).
"Most people ask, 'What does a thing do?' Hackers ask, 'What can I make it do?'" - Pablos Holman

Offline Evan Munson

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2017, 10:27:44 pm »
Do we have an update on when we could get a release?

Offline Art_of_camelot

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2017, 08:45:24 pm »
I'll let @calc84maniac  answer, but with projects like this, eta's tend to be either nonexistant or very flexible.

Offline Skeletal Charizard

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2017, 12:47:10 pm »
Wondering why there's been no sort of update on the projects progress in months. It has me concerned, and anxious for when some form of update is announced. And I can't wait to hear some form of news about this project!

Offline SUCCBO11

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2017, 09:20:24 pm »
any updates or news on progress? or even an alpha?

Offline calc84maniac

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #13 on: August 16, 2017, 10:13:21 pm »
Most recently (within the last week or so) I've added support for save states. I've also been working on general bug fixes and performance improvements.

The major things remaining on my to-do list before the first release are:
  • Real-Time Clock support (currently in progress)
  • Saving emulator configuration (and maybe per-game config, but that could be postponed)
  • Fixing automatic frameskip (which doesn't work properly when skipping multiple frames)
  • Making sure the ROM splitting tool is usable

And whatever else comes up in the meantime, I suppose.

I might make another video soon that shows some of the emulator features like the save states and UI.
"Most people ask, 'What does a thing do?' Hackers ask, 'What can I make it do?'" - Pablos Holman

Offline kaosjr kaosjr

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Re: TI-Boy CE Progress Thread
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2017, 10:09:21 pm »
How's the progress on this? Asking cause school season's starting and i want something to do on my calculator that's not just Minesweeper to show off to my friends.