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cuavas
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MAME 0.251

MAME 0.251

It looks like MAME 0.251 has made it out the door just in time for the end of 2022! December felt like a long month in MAME development, because so much happened! Nebula, an elusive DECO Cassette game, is now emulated. With working steering controls, Magical Pumpkin: Puroland de Daibouken is now playable. Two members of the HP 9825 family from the 1970s have been added, and issues with keyboard input on localised versions of the HP 86B have been fixed.

One of the most interesting systems added this month is the so-called Gerät 32620, make by the Institut für Kosmosforschung of the Deutsche Demokratische Republik. This device was used to read coded messages to be broadcast via shortwave radio numbers stations for reception by undercover agents. If a human were to read the numbers, they could inadvertently disclose knowledge about the nature of the messages or the coding scheme in their speech patterns. This device gives a small glimpse into the shadowy world of espionage.

Konami fans have a lot to be excited about. Firstly, two more hand-held LCD games have been added: Skate or Die, and Bill Elliott’s NASCAR Racing. Secondly, Windy Fairy has been making steady progress on the PowerPC-based arcade systems, with gun controls now working in Teraburst. Finally, various refinements and fixes to the CPU core for Konami’s custom 6809 processor have fixed a subtle parallax scrolling effect in the classic Padodius DA!

Several systems have been fleshed out noticeably this month, including the NEC PC-8801MKII SR family of Japanese computers, the 3com Palm IIIc and Palm m100 PDAs, and the Yamaha DX100 synthesizer. Additionally, the NEC PC-88VA2 can now boot most software, and the work on the Palm systems has allowed the VTech IQ Unlimited to show signs of life.

Quite a few systems have had pluggable controller support added this month, and support for some additional controllers has been added, including:
  • Pluggable controller support for consoles and computers from Sega, NEC and Sharp.
  • Sega Mega Drive mouse and 4-player adaptor support.
  • Support for an ATmega-based paddle controller that works with export versions of the Sega Master System.
  • NEC PC Engine mouse support.
  • Support for the Dempa Micom Soft XE-1AP, the first analog gamepad. Can be used with compatible software for the Sega Mega Drive, NEC PC Engine, Sharp X68000 and FM Towns families.
Of course, there are lots of other fixes and emulation improvements. The Apple IIGS has better ADB and real-time clock emulation. Sega’s Turbo and Buck Rogers: Planet of Zoom have better controls, and the latter has had graphical priority issues fixed. The NES APU frame counter interrupt is now emulated, fixing issues with dozens of games. For developers, debugger command and expression history is now saved between sessions.

As always, you can read about all the changes this month in the whatsnew.txt file, or download the source code and 64-bit Windows binary packages from the download page.

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