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FBA is not arcade only

  • I thought i would write a topic about this, because it is not well-known, and it's actually a very good alternative for some games which won't run properly in picodrive/genplus_gx.

    lr-fbalpha can emulate consoles, until recently it wasn't convenient because you couldn't use the zipname directly (you had to prefix it with XXX_ where XXX was an identifier for the console, and remove the zip|7z extension), now you can use the --subsystem XXX argument instead and call the zip|7z file directly.

    As an example, for the sms game contained in :
    Before : retroarch -L path/to/sms_zool
    Now : retroarch -L --subsystem sms path/to/

    The following identifiers are available :

    • CBS ColecoVision : cv (this one has mapping issues)
    • MSX 1 : msx
    • Nec PC-Engine : pce
    • Nec SuperGrafX : sgx
    • Nec TurboGrafx-16 : tg
    • Sega GameGear : gg
    • Sega Master System : sms
    • Sega Megadrive : md
    • Sega SG-1000 : sg1k

    Of course, you need specific romsets (dats available here) even if it's not arcade.

    On a sidenote, you can also emulate Neogeo CD by using the neocd identifier, there is 2 tricks to this though :

    • You need a copy of and in your libretro system directory
    • you can only load cue with MODE1/2048 tracks at the moment.

    PS : Neogeo CD doesn't need specific romsets.

  • administrators

    @barbudreadmon Thanks. I created a PR for the neocd support earlier (thanks for adding that). Will enable the emulator for the other systems after some testing.

  • Global Moderator

    i wonder why fba needs specific romsets for console games? if one console is one driver (?), and if it knows what driver the file is for via the command line option, can't it just attempt to load?

    requiring specific checksums and file names makes it quite prohibitive compared to the other console emulators.

  • Nice. Now I don’t need lr-mess for neogeo cd anymore. That wasn’t the best option due to the higher cpu requirements.

  • @dankcushions Having romsets allows fba to know which game it is running, so it can apply needed settings to run the game properly. As a simple example i hooked the proper settings for multitap in most megadrive games not long ago, so unlike with other megadrive emulators, in fbalpha you don't have to guess which multitap hardware needs to go in which port on a per game basis (which can be a hassle).
    Basically, one console is one driver with a ton of conditions depending on the game running.

  • Global Moderator

    @barbudreadmon thanks for the explanation! that is an advantage, but i would still think it would be cool for it to just load it as a generic 'megadrive game' if it failed the checksum, but there's probably good reasons why that can't happen.

  • Is the Neo Geo CD up and running with the current version of FBA or do I have to download a new version?
    I really want to play some neo CDs but have no idea what the steps are to play them in FBA any help would be much appreciated.

  • @skj said in FBA is not arcade only:

    Is the Neo Geo CD up and running with the current version of FBA or do I have to download a new version?

    I don't know what you mean by "current version", "current version" of lr-fbalpha is the version available directly from github. With improvements added nearly everyday, any binary built in the past is not "current version".
    Neogeo CD support was added 2 days ago.

  • @barbudreadmon

    Sorry for the confusion, I wasn't sure if the new fixes had been added and uploaded on GitHub, the last version I had was from a few weeks ago.

  • @barbudreadmon What .cfg file do i need to add the --subsystem neocd line in ? I have been searching in the githubs looking for an answer, but not sure where to add.

  • Nevermind, I got it working. You have to choose the fbalpha neocd option before loading. Also, it looks like it doesn't have chd support and no cd music..which was the point of using this. Thanks anyways. Back to lr-mess.

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