Author Topic: Play community-created games in a browser  (Read 41935 times)

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Offline danoon

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #60 on: May 29, 2011, 07:16:01 PM »
"I can say that The Ruby Cast runs blazing fast compared to jDosBox."

jDosbox/Dosbox will default to a slow speed for 16-bit apps.  You can set the cycles to max in the dosbox.conf file to speed things up if this is the case, or call "z:\config -set cpu cycles max"

As for mouse captures issues mentioned earlier in this thread, it will default to capturing the mouse if the applet is signed, otherwise for unsigned applets jdosbox will not have permission to control the mouse like that.

Offline gumby

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #61 on: May 29, 2011, 10:08:06 PM »
"I can say that The Ruby Cast runs blazing fast compared to jDosBox."

jDosbox/Dosbox will default to a slow speed for 16-bit apps.  You can set the cycles to max in the dosbox.conf file to speed things up if this is the case, or call "z:\config -set cpu cycles max".
I actually find the default speed of jDosBox to work just fine for the AGI games.  Upon changing the speed within the game, I can easily outdo the default speed of sarien.net.

However, for SCI games I may want to tweak the default cycles a bit depending upon what kind of feedback we get. 

Thanks for the info - nice to see you taking an interest in what we are doing with your software :).
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Offline Collector

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #62 on: May 30, 2011, 04:01:19 AM »
I think that you can easily get by with a generic dosbox.conf for the fan games here, perhaps just one embedded in the jdosbox.jar. I doubt that there are any timer bugs in the fan SCI games, but I default to 10000 cycles (official DOSBox) for the SCI games for my installers. For most games this is slow enough to avoid most unpatched speed bugs and fast enough to not notice any lag. Only the SCI32 games seem to want more. LSL7DEMO, an SCI32 game, does not run quite right in jDOSBox, even when cycles are set to max. I am not sure how complete or compatible the dynamic core is in jDOSBox, yet.

Outside of that, I think that the best way to speed things up is to ZIP/JAR the IMG files to make it a much smaller (i.e. faster) download.
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Offline Raf

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #63 on: May 30, 2011, 09:01:07 AM »
Okay, I'm finished.  All the games (except the NAGI ones) are playable either on-line or off-line (both from within a browser).  The archive consists of:

- An index page of all the games in a sortable html table, nothing fancy.
- A generic, parameterized page to launch jDosBox
- jDosBox itself, current stable version
- All games in 10 meg images, zipped up

The NAGI games are listed in the index, but are not playable.

The file is 30 meg, couldn't upload it.  Cloudee & Raf, PM me so I can get this to you guys - assuming you'd like to host it.  I guess I don't see a problem releasing the package for the community to download as well.

On to testing the sarien.net solution.
PM sent. Now, for me, the biggest issue's the NAGI games. Those tend to be the best showcase games (Enclosure, Klownstein's Hobbits, ...), so it'd be nice to get those working as well. Things should calm down here soon, so I'll be able to look into it as well.

Offline lance.ewing

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #64 on: May 30, 2011, 05:42:14 PM »
Okay, I'm finished.  All the games (except the NAGI ones) are playable either on-line or off-line (both from within a browser).  The archive consists of:

- An index page of all the games in a sortable html table, nothing fancy.
- A generic, parameterized page to launch jDosBox
- jDosBox itself, current stable version
- All games in 10 meg images, zipped up

The NAGI games are listed in the index, but are not playable.

The file is 30 meg, couldn't upload it.  Cloudee & Raf, PM me so I can get this to you guys - assuming you'd like to host it.  I guess I don't see a problem releasing the package for the community to download as well.

On to testing the sarien.net solution.

For my understanding, why is there an issue with the NAGI games? In fact what exactly is a NAGI game? I thought NAGI was just a Windows AGI interpreter that runs against the same data files that the original interpreter runs against. For example, I can run The Ruby Cast with NAGI. Does NAGI have extensions? I recall that some people did write extensions such as 256 colours, mouse, etc. but I didn't realise that NAGI was like that.

Offline gumby

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #65 on: May 30, 2011, 06:37:06 PM »
When I attempted to run NAGI-required games with the AGI executable I was only able to get so far, sometimes through the intro screen.  Then I got an 'out of memory' error.  I think that it's a backward-compatibility issue, AGI games run fine in NAGI not necessarily the other way around.
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Offline robingravel

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #66 on: May 30, 2011, 10:48:56 PM »
When I attempted to run NAGI-required games with the AGI executable I was only able to get so far, sometimes through the intro screen.  Then I got an 'out of memory' error.  I think that it's a backward-compatibility issue, AGI games run fine in NAGI not necessarily the other way around.

Yep. Some agi games only run with nagi.


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« Last Edit: May 30, 2011, 10:51:28 PM by robingravel »

Offline Collector

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #67 on: May 31, 2011, 12:56:28 AM »
For my understanding, why is there an issue with the NAGI games? In fact what exactly is a NAGI game? I thought NAGI was just a Windows AGI interpreter that runs against the same data files that the original interpreter runs against. For example, I can run The Ruby Cast with NAGI.
You are right. The issue is not with NAGI itself, but the games. Most likely games that do not run on the original Sierra interpreter have errors that NAGI ignores. If the source of the games in question was available and someone was willing to go through it he might be able to spot what is wrong. Nick Sonneveld might have an idea from the NAGI end. Perhaps a "JavaScript port" of NAGI? ;)

Does NAGI have extensions? I recall that some people did write extensions such as 256 colours, mouse, etc. but I didn't realise that NAGI was like that.
I have never run across any kind of reference of a plugin/extension for NAGI. Sarien was incorporating extras, like mouse support and graphic filters, etc.
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Offline Collector

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #68 on: May 31, 2011, 02:01:13 AM »
OK, I did a little research. These games most likely have stack errors. I fixed most of the game using the interpreter of one of the demo packs. Open Mic Night makes use of mouse support, so use of the Sierra interpreter is out. Space Quest 0 - Replicated, versions 1.03 and 1.04 give not enough memory errors. V - The Graphical Adventure demo just does not like the original at all. All others are fixed. At least they start. I cannot say if there might be errors further into the games.

Edit, again I hit the brick wall of not being able to upload anything here. It is only a little under 3MB. I'll upload the fixed games to SHP and post a link here later. I really wish it was possible upload attachments here.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2011, 02:04:07 AM by Collector »
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Offline Raf

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #69 on: May 31, 2011, 03:52:50 AM »
Didn't I already explain this earlier in this thread? :P

The original AGI interpreters have a very limited amount of memory. Some fanmade games (Enclosure, Hobbits, etc) have some resources that're too big for that memory, or load in too many resources. The original AGI interpreter can't handle that, as it's made for computers from a different age. NAGI allows bigger memory usage (I don't know whether it's by design or not). That means that some games that have at least one room which requires more memory than the original interpreter can handle, can only run on NAGI.

For the record, most of the time, those resources're background pictures with lots of dithering. There're some techniques to do that without any problem, outside of Picedit. But once it's in the AGI picture format, it's a whooooooole lot of commands to draw single-pixel lines. That eats up an ENORMOUS amount of memory (enormous to AGI terms)

Offline gumby

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #70 on: May 31, 2011, 08:51:52 AM »
OK, I did a little research. These games most likely have stack errors. I fixed most of the game using the interpreter of one of the demo packs. Open Mic Night makes use of mouse support, so use of the Sierra interpreter is out. Space Quest 0 - Replicated, versions 1.03 and 1.04 give not enough memory errors. V - The Graphical Adventure demo just does not like the original at all. All others are fixed. At least they start. I cannot say if there might be errors further into the games.

Edit, again I hit the brick wall of not being able to upload anything here. It is only a little under 3MB. I'll upload the fixed games to SHP and post a link here later. I really wish it was possible upload attachments here.
Ah, crap.  I should have updated my list of what I classified as NAGI (if you are going off of my list) there were a few changes.  Please, correct me if there are inaccuracies:

- AGI Combat
- Bob the Farmboy
- Enclosure
- Gennadi
- Hobbits
- Journey of Chef
- Open Mic Night
- Save Santa
- Space Quest 0 - Replicated
- Star Pilot 2 - Bigger Fish
- Tales of the Tiki
- The Long Haired Dude
- V - The Graphical Adventure

EDIT:  Oh yeah, you might want to check that the games are at least playable - it seems like one of the characteristics of these games is that they will sometimes start up, play the intro, then bomb out.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2011, 09:07:45 AM by gumby »
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Offline lance.ewing

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #71 on: June 03, 2011, 12:43:15 PM »
Didn't I already explain this earlier in this thread? :P

The original AGI interpreters have a very limited amount of memory. Some fanmade games (Enclosure, Hobbits, etc) have some resources that're too big for that memory, or load in too many resources. The original AGI interpreter can't handle that, as it's made for computers from a different age. NAGI allows bigger memory usage (I don't know whether it's by design or not). That means that some games that have at least one room which requires more memory than the original interpreter can handle, can only run on NAGI.

For the record, most of the time, those resources're background pictures with lots of dithering. There're some techniques to do that without any problem, outside of Picedit. But once it's in the AGI picture format, it's a whooooooole lot of commands to draw single-pixel lines. That eats up an ENORMOUS amount of memory (enormous to AGI terms)

Wow, there is a lot that I missed when I was away from the AGI scene for 10 years or so. I guess what we are saying is that they are not technically AGI games, and thus the reason they are being called NAGI games. Makes sense.

Is the Sierra interpreter the only fully working DOS interpreter? Maybe there is finally a reason to resurrect and complete MEKA. Or perhaps a Java version of MEKA. Or perhaps we can look at that Java AGI project and see how far that got towards a working interpreter.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2011, 02:02:49 PM by lance.ewing »

Offline Collector

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #72 on: June 03, 2011, 02:36:16 PM »
Or could Sarien.net be altered to allot more memory to the games?
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Offline lance.ewing

Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #73 on: June 03, 2011, 04:23:32 PM »
This issue with sarien.net is probably more to do with conversion to Javascript issues rather than memory related issues. If we think about the four AGI resources, we can discount SOUND because as far as I know that wasn't implemented in sarien.net, but for the VIEW and PICTURE resources, the conversion would be fairly exact I would have thought. The size of the images generated I doubt would be an issue for a browser. The LOGIC resources are a different thing all together. These are converted to Javascript, so I guess there is potential for conversion issues in this area. The core engine is also written in Javascript and might include differences not in the original Sierra interpreter. I remember when I was working on MEKA that there were weird things happening in some AGI games that I couldn't explain, which must have been something to do with subtle differences between how I had written the interpreter and what the Sierra interpreter did.

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Re: Play community-created games in a browser
« Reply #74 on: June 05, 2011, 07:39:48 AM »
There is another DOS-compatible fan-made AGI interpreter that's supposedly allows games with more memory than the original interpreter can handle. Can't remember the name. Starts with Y. I could never get it to work, though.
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