Please do not post a support request without first reading and following the advice in

ES Gamelist Scroll Bug - Black boxes appear when rapidly scrolling through the game list

  • As the title says, I have found a bug while working on my theme. My apologies if this is known and documented, I searched briefly and came up with nothing. It occurs on the detail and video views when holding up or down to quickly scroll through the list, usually 20-30 games minimum, but as few as 5.


    From what I can tell, the boxes stay the same for that system view until refreshed via theme change, debug shortcut, or ES is restarted. It seems like the boxes are related to the metadata content on the screen. I can replicate the box pattern fairly reliably based on the game I start with when I hold the up/down buttons, and if you notice in the first two screenshots, it's the same bug instance (no refresh/reload), but the two games have different missing metadata tags and this causes the boxes to move or not appear when that game is highlighted. The third image is what it looks like when it happens in the extreme. I have no clue what causes the variance in opacity, I suspect it is something being drawn and redrawn over and over itself at low opacity while scrolling through the list. Using debug mode to highlight text boxes with Ctrl+T does not highlight the boxes created by this bug, despite it seemingly being related to text boxes. The only actual text box that is affected is the description box.

    I have replicated this on Windows and on RetroPie on my RPi3B, and using my theme, carbon, and the basevid theme installed with the theme toolkit. It affects all of them, but is much harder to notice in carbon due to the dark background. Unfortunately, there was no useful output to es_log that I could find, mostly just a lot of missing image files for my system folders: pastebin

  • @KazanTheMan what is the theme supposed to look like when displayed correctly? It appears you are trying to render the text over an image? What version of retropie and emulationstation are you running? First guess might be to modify your your VRAM up or down and see if that helps. It could be a memory issue when scrolling quickly and trying to render the text and images on top of each other? Try testing by increasing the vram by 10 each time until you get to 130 or 140, if that doesn't work try going down by 10 to as low as 60 or 70. I would suspect going up might be better? Do you get a lot of white flashing screens if you switch from system to system?

    Another test I would run is simply moving the text postituon in one is the system theme views and see if it occurs when you have all of the images and text on screen, but not on top of each other.

    The last thing I would look at is file sizes of your images. You are showing a lot of images on each view, how many kbs? Are they all meta data images from your game list or are they individually patched images? Maybe sharing your theme.xml might help some trouble shooting?

  • @TMNTturtlguy Correctly displayed, the video/detail view should look like this:

    On Windows, ES 2.1.5rp. On my RPi3, 4.2.2 updated from source as of April 15th, with ES 2.1.6rp.

    I will try the vram changes, but seeing as how the issue occurs on both PC and my RPi version of ES, I do not believe vram to be the issue. I will give a go at moving the elements around to see what happens when they are not overlapping, that sounds like a strong possibility, but as I said I can replicate this across multiple themes, not just mine. It just seems to be most severe with my theme, so the overlapping elements could be playing a role.

    The total file size for theme element images is 857kB, system logos add another 10kB per system, and the system image in the background is approximately 900kB for each system, at a maximum. The other images like logos and screenshots are all scraped data provided by metadata tags, and including the mp4 video, adds another 750-900kB.

    If you'd like to take a look at the theme to troubleshoot, it can be found here.

  • @KazanTheMan have you considered crunching the .png images in SteamBP-master/_inc/images? not sure, but it can reduce the total size (from ~892K to ~492K) and may help with those artifacts. all the system-image.png files are also pretty hefty, i managed to shave off up to 10% of those with trimage, but there are likely other apps that might be better/more up-to-date out in the wild.

  • I have the same issue with the theme I made. It disappears after reboot, but returns with quick scrolling through games.

  • I just tested a version of my theme with no images included, so the only images being displayed were the ones that emulationstation itself forces display of, namely md_image, md_video, md_marquee, and system logos. Screenshot:

    It happens with the simplebigart theme as well:

    At this point I don't believe it is an issue with my theme or my system as I can replicate it across multiple systems and themes. Interestingly, themes that hide metadata texts by placing them at 1,1 don't have this issue, likely because the artifacts seem to always render below and/or to the right of existing text. I'm going to submit an issue for this on github at this point.

  • @KazanTheMan I was also able to recreate this on all of my themes today on the newest updates. It only happens to my "md_description" the other metadata on mine is fine. The crazy thing is that once it happens, it stays there for that entire system, but not the others. Once you go back to the system, the shaded box is still there. Once you enter a game, and then exit, back to normal. Definitely something going on with the latest update.

  • @KazanTheMan I am working on a fix for this. Hoping to finish it up this weekend.

  • @jdrassa Just an update on this, you may already be aware this happens, but I am also getting the dark black overlay on the md_description randomly on exiting games. I can't put a finger on what causes it, but every 5th or 6th time i exit a game, the description gets the black overlay, just like when you scroll quickly. Thanks

  • The fix for this was merged into the RetroPie repository last night.

  • @jdrassa awesome! is this an ES update?

  • @TMNTturtlguy Yes. You may need to do an update from source though.

  • @jdrassa Thanks for doing this! Is there anyway that you could share the code with @pjft? Maybe if he has time in the future he can add the fix to his most current ScreenSaver/OMX build with Carousel support.

  • @jdrassa Thanks for the quick fix. Props to you.

  • @TMNTturtlguy Thanks for the note.

    There's no need to share the code - as soon as it's accepted to the main repository I'll just update from there.


    EDIT: Oh, I see it's already accepted. I'll look into that in the coming days/weeks.

  • @TMNTturtlguy could you check if in the latest, updated from source, main ES the lower ribbon in system view is showing up (the background of the "xxx games available" text)?

    It's not showing for me in your theme at the moment, after I merged the latest ES changes, so wanted to check if it's my merged version that's broken or the main one.

    I know it used to show!


  • @pjft I will look at that when i get a chance and get back to you. I bet i know what the issue the games available text in the comic book font?

    I tried to implement the new carousel feature into the theme, but i couldn't figure out the <feature> tag for the carousel, since then i have a thread on how to do that, just haven't had time to implement it yet. SOOOO instead i worked with @modmaster who was running an older version of ES without carousel support. We found that i was able to modify the games available text line with a new font but not the color of the background. What happened was on my updated build, i see the comic font and the standard grey translucent bar. @modmaster would see the standard text with standard grey translucent bar. If i tried to change the color of the background of the bar to a white to match the background bar behind the system logo, it would work prefect on my build with carousel support, but on the previous version that @modmaster ran he would get the white screen block letter systems view.

    Long post, sorry. I will test on my end later. In the mean time, you could go into the comic_book.xml and the following right below <text name="systemInfo">. this should correct the issue. Note, i believe 99 is the correct opacity for the bar, but you could try 90 instead.


    Here is the entire block

    <text name="systemInfo">

  • @TMNTturtlguy I see. Yes, it's that text, though Carbon still renders as expected. Could be that, then.

    I can't test right now, but if you feel you may know what's happening, then I'll leave this here and you then let us know if it's happening in the main ES, and if that's the theme's problem, the main ES's problem or if it just happens on my merged version (which I haven't yet shared a binary of, but I may share with you a way to get it from the source, if it helps).

    Thanks. Hope you're doing well.

  • @pjft Test results using the posted version of my Comic Book Theme:

    Running ES V2.1.6RP-OMX-MERGED from the Apr17 file - I have a grey bar that is transparent and has comic book style black words "XX GAMES AVAILABLE". So on your build prior to what you are modifying now, my theme code works correctly and the bar shows up. (doesn't mean that the code is the correct one to use though!)

    I didn't have the updated ES from @jdrassa installed on my "testing" build yet, so i started an install from source. I have been stuck at 81% for about an hour now. Every 5 minutes or so the green light on the pi flashes a few times, otherwise it is just on solid. I am going to leave it run while i get some sleep and if it finishes i will update in the morning. If not, it looks like i will do a fresh install of everything and then let you know! (p.s. my test build is on one of the 128 cards i was working with before, so glad that I have converted my actual systems over to the smaller cards and USB!)

  • @TMNTturtlguy thanks for the time. If it's too much effort, don't worry, I'll test it out in the coming days. Thanks for looking into it!

Contributions to the project are always appreciated, so if you would like to support us with a donation you can do so here.

Hosting provided by Mythic-Beasts. See the Hosting Information page for more information.