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View Full Version : Games & emulator news (07/25/2007)

07-26-2007, 10:16 AM
This is the latest part of my Games News series; you can find the previous part HERE (http://www.pocketpcmag.com/blogs/index.php?blog=3&p=2111&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1). The news in this part applies to both the Pocket PC (Windows Mobile 6 Pro / Classic) and MS Smartphone (Windows Mobile 6 Standard) devices - that is, no matter what Windows Mobile device you have, you WILL want to read on.

Arcade Park 1.3 out Ė now, with redefinable fire button!

Arcade Park is, in my opinion, a really good collection of reimplementation of old arcade games reviewed HERE (http://www.pocketpcmag.com/blogs/index.php?blog=3&p=773&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1) (you may also want to check out the two other reviews linked at the end) containing several old subgames. Itís available for example HERE (http://www.clickgamer.com/moreinfo.htm?pid=4820) for all mobile platforms, including both the MS Smartphone (both 176*220 and QVGA) and Pocket PC (itís even compatible with 240*240 square-screen devices; unfortunately, it doesnít make use of high resolution on VGA ones).

(main menu on a 176*220 Smartphone; the same on a QVGA/VGA PPC / QVGA Smartphone (http://www.winmobiletech.com/072007CoD2MP/QVGAMainmemu.png))

In-game screenshot on a 176*220 Smartphone; the same on a QVGA/VGA PPC / QVGA Smartphone (http://www.winmobiletech.com/072007CoD2MP/QVGAIngame.png))

The biggest problem with the game, so far, have been the inability to redefine keys; most importantly, the Action button. Now, oin the new version, you can do it in the new Controls menu. Example 176*220 SP screenshots: 1 (http://www.winmobiletech.com/072007CoD2MP/ArcadePark13176-ActRedefine.png) 2 (http://www.winmobiletech.com/072007CoD2MP/ArcadePark13176-ActRedefine2.png) (on a QVGA PPC / SP (http://www.winmobiletech.com/072007CoD2MP/ArcadePark13qvga-ActRedefine.png))

(Incidentally, as can also be seen in the in-game screenshots, you no longer need to defend the Soviet flag, which may be good news for several players, particularly in post-Soviet countries. Another plus for the developers.)

(Guys, Iím really sorry youíve just missed the deadline date for the Awards 2007 with this upgraded version. Should you have published the new version some days earlier, I would definitely have nominated it for this yearís awards. No problem Ė Iíll do it next year.)


Now that the button redefinition problem is fixed, highly recommended, particularly if you have a Smartphone (given the lack of good MS Smartphone games).

SmartGear 0.28 out!

SmartGear (http://www.bitbanksoftware.com/SmartGear.html) is one of the best gaming console emulatrors Iíve featured in my past emulator news / roundups.


So far, one of the biggest problems with the emulator was the sound problems (in addition to its incompatibility with some games Ė for example, enhanced NES titles; the PC Engine version of Turrican Ė unfortunately, this hasnít been enhanced. The only change is that for example Turrican no longer starts (with all 0.2x versions, as opposed to 0.12)). Now, according to the developer, this is supposed to be fixed.

Note that there are still some problems with the sound: for example, the PC Engine (TG-16) version of Bonk's Adventure still plays the same FM-like sounds during the game as earier versions. Also, very few Genesis (Mega Drive) games have music (for example, Xenon 2 (Xenon 2 Megablast (E) [c][!]) and Risky Woods (Risky Woods (UE) [!]) donít have, the former not even sounds; one of the very few games that do have music is Alien 3 (JUE) [!]. Also, the FitWin* mode still crashes on my VGA devices and FitWin is unberabaly slow Ė you will still need to use either the 100% or the 150% mode, which means stamp-sized screens on VGA devices. On the other hand, on 176*220 Smartphones (for example, on my HTC Oxygen / s310), where itís REALLY needed with most desktop games (otherwise, theyíd be too big even in 75% mode) FitWin works just great and doesnít result in any really bad speed decrease (tested this with the GG version of Sonic and the PC Engine version of Bonk's Adventure; they both worked just great with the default sound / frame skipping / throttling settings on my Oxygen).

The desktop Windows version of the emulator, after closing it once (because I couldnít continue a paused game), kept crashing after restarts.

All in all, while this title is REALLY good (particularly on slower devices Ė for example, non-overclocked TI OMAP ones, including, screen size-wise, both types of Smartphones), the FitWin performance may need to be addressed on VGA Pocket PCís as soon as possible, along with the Genesis (Mega Drive) music issues.