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Update docs for lr-mame2003-plus artwork, backdrops, bezels?

  • I just managed to get artwork working with lr-mame2003-plus. Maybe this could go in the docs? Samples are covered, but not artwork, and the key info is buried deep in a thread here:

    Backdrops (and bezels too!) will work out of the box if you have the artwork in ~/RetroPie/BIOS/mame2003/artwork. It doesn't work if they are in the roms folder, which is where you usually put them if you are using AdvMame or mame4all.

    They need to be in the old MAME format (a .zip file containing images and an .art file) and not the new format (a .zip containing a .lay file and images). These can be downloaded from Mr Do's discontinued artwork page at lowish resolution, but there are higher-quality sources out there for individual games. Just don't confuse artwork intended for a 1080p Retroarch overlay with MAME artwork files, and be aware that most people create these to fit their particular monitor resolution. If you, like me, don't use a landscape 1920x1080 monitor, most of the files won't work well.

    Once you have copied the files to the right location, you can go into RGUI -> Quick Menu -> Options -> Display artwork and set it to enabled. You will have to exit the emulator altogether and launch the game, but it will save the preference for artwork for all games.

    This setting and the artwork resolution setting are saved in /opt/retropie/configs/all/retroarch-core-options.cfg as

    mame2003_display_artwork = "enabled"
    mame2003_art_resolution = "1"

    Unfortunately, it does not look like you can use -nobezel on a command line to selectively show only the backdrop and not the bezel, in case you wanted to use overlays for bezels, cf If there is a way, let me know!

    One nice thing about MAME backdrops and bezels is that unlike overlays, they are affected by custom settings (RGUI -> Settings -> Video) because they are drawn within the core, not on top of it like overlays are.

  • @rkoster Hi, I am wondering if you ever found a solution to allow excluding the bezels, or if you know how to edit the .art files for this purpose. There are only 168 artwork files that I could find in the required format, so that isn't a lot if I have to edit them manually (If there are supposed to be more than 168 artwork files, please let me know.) The bezel for Armor Attack is absurdly huge and doesn't add anything to the experience, while the bezels for Battlezone and Red Baron add cockpit views that I think are essential. I'm mostly interested in artwork that was necessary for black and white games to look like they originally did.

    I did notice that Star Castle has an overlay by default in lr-mame2003 on Retropie, but I don't know where that is stored.

    Thanks for your consideration.

  • @neurocrash Alas, I do not know of a way to do -nobezel still.

    You can open the .zip file and find within the component parts of the bezel and backdrop. For example, if you grab from Mr Do's, and open the zip, you will find inside:


    The file is actually just a text file and can be opened with any text editor. Inside it looks like this:

    //	2D Processing by MarbleMad
    //	High Resolution Version
    //	[artname]:
    //		file       = [filename]
    //		alphafile  = [alphafilename]
    //		layer      = [backdrop|overlay|bezel|marquee|panel|side|flyer]
    //		position   = [left],[top],[right],[bottom]
    //		priority   = [priority]
    //		visible    = [visible]
    //		alpha      = [alpha]
    //		brightness = [brightness]
    //	Thanks CADweazle for the bezel scans. The flat scans were reconstructed into the
    //	bezel shape using photoshop.
    	file		= bezel.png
    	layer		= bezel
    	alphafile	= mask.png
    	priority	= -2
    	visible		= 1
    	position	= -0.25,-0.3,1.2,1.1
    //	The backdrop image of a screen-burned vector monitor was created in photoshop
    //	with some phorographs of my battlezone monitor.
    	file		= asteroid.png
    	layer		= backdrop
    	priority	= 1
    	visible		= 1
    	brightness	= 1
    	position	= -0.075,-0.075,1.080,1.085
    //	The tint overlay helps give the vectors a more translucent look.
    	file		= tintover.png
    	alphafile	= tintmask.png
    	layer		= overlay
    	priority	= -1
    	visible		= 1
    	position	= 0,0,1,1
    //	note:  1600x1200```
    Presumably, you can simply edit this file, and make any changes you like. But I haven't tried it.

  • @rkoster Ok thanks very much for that help. I was able to remove the bezels from some of the games where I want only the overlays, by removing bezel and mask sections from the .art file.

    The next problem is that I tried to replace low res bezels or over lays with higher resolution versions, but the color palette gets corrupted when it appears in MAME. In these cases, I have opened the original .png files, sometimes resized, then replaced the graphics and saved. When viewing the resulting .png it looks fine, but in MAME the resulting colors are bizarre. I haven't changed the bit depth of the images or anything I can think of that could cause this.

    Do you have any idea what I might be doing wrong?

  • @neurocrash No idea -- but PNG does a LOT of optimizations that depend on settings. You might want to open the original file in a capable graphics editor and see what sort of settings it has exactly, so that you can replicate them when you save.

  • @rkoster The one that I was able to update was Armor Attack, only because it really only used a few colors so I picked and filled with the exact same colors that were used in the original overlay. I have not figured out the difference in formats, but maybe the old overlay format requires a specific yuv or rgb format, such as a palettized rgb.

  • To get the best results you should use Retroarch overlays (so you get them, high res) together with mame backdrops (including working leds/lamps but low res).
    As shown in the already mentioned thread:

    Yes it would be helpful if someone could summarize in a wiki DOC all the required steps to install.
    I worked on this matter and created backdrops over one year ago and struggle to remember all the details now that I am implementing it on my new Pi4 :-))

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