EasyRPG Player 0.6.2.2 “Pincer Attack – Patch 2”

The hot days and vacations make the Player advance more slowly and it is about time for another major release but too many awesome new features are still in the works so we decided to make another minor bugfix release instead but you can expect a new major release by the end of year :).

Games affected by bugfixes in this release are DRAGON FANTASY 2, Heaven and Hell: Episode 3 and Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき). Escape and reflect work now correctly in the battle system and the Android game browser learned how to sort the game list and supports pinning of games to the top. Read the rest of this article for more.

For package maintainers: No new liblcf release (use 0.6.2). We believe that we solved all your build issues (see developer notes). Thank you for sending us your patches!

Crash fixes

When entering the Tatami room in Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき) the Player crashed because the Tilemap image was too small. (#2265)

Regressions fixed

When using Command Control Variables with a range of size 1 (start and end are the same) the command was not working properly. This was a regression introduced in 0.6.2 when fixing the Random number in range feature. (#2225, #2289)

Teleport targets were not properly overwritten, resulting in the list becoming longer and longer every time a target was changed. Not many games use this feature, a noticable on is DRAGON FANTASY 2 (#2234)

This is not a screenshot from Dragon Fantasy II – We had no suitable savegame for making one :(

Event/Interpreter

Parallel events do not receive key inputs anymore when a message box is active. This caused the custom menu to appear when Escape was pressed while a message was shown in Heaven and Hell: Episode 3. (#2284)

The panorama was not redrawn in NIWATORIベンチマーク because this game used a hacked map of size 1×1 which is smaller than the minimal size of 20×15. (#2289)

Battle

When using healing magic RPG Maker 2000 only shows the difference between current and full HP but RPG Maker 2003 does not clamp the value – It always showed the entire healed amount. (#1680)

The escape algorithm matches now RPG Maker behaviour. (#2150)

The spell reflection feature of RPG Maker 2003 is now fully implemented. (#2251)

In the RPG Maker 2000 battle system the action of dead actors was not reset when pressing ESC to select the previous actor. This was not crashing but gave a Actor X has multiple battle actions warning. Dead actors are assigned a No Move pseudo action because of state recovery and event processing. (#2309)

Savegames

Spritesheets were incorrectly saved in the savefile when spritesheets were disabled. (#2226)

Android

The Android game browser received a small face-lift, sorts the list alphabetically and got a favorite feature. Your favorite games are shown first in the list. (#2257, #2258)

The new game browser (to the right) features a better aspect ratio for the title images and lists your favorite (❤️) games first.
In landscape mode the title graphics use now the entire space of the box and the game title is overlayed.

Web Player

The web player should be around 10%-20% faster now.

This was broken for a very long time but the fullscreen mode of our web player finally works again! (#1665)

When the web player is embedded on an external website (iframe) the keyinput input did not work properly. (#2307)

We replaced the text “Fullscreen” with a language neutral U+26F6 “SQUARE FOUR CORNERS” (⛶). (#2307)

Other

The Game Browser launches now games in Test Play / Debug mode when SHIFT (or the button mapped as SHIFT) is pressed. (#2239)

The macOS version is now distributed as an app bundle. From a user perspective this means that the Player has now our beautiful Player logo and you can double click it to launch games. (#2249)

When the popular patches DynRPG or Maniac Patch are found in the game directory the Player emits now a warning that the games are unsupported. (#2283)

The warning “Sound effect playback failed: No free channels available” is not shown to the user anymore. It was not very helpful (and very annoying when doing a fast forward). We know by now how RPG_RT implements sound effects but our audio system is not yet designed for it. (#2291)

When the first actor used a skill from the menu that only had “self” as a target it was possible to pick any actor as the target. (#2304)

The sand storm colors were slightly off. (#2315)

For Developers

The unit tests build now on macOS. (#2232)

Some constexpr code failed to compile on GCC < 7.2. (#2246)

CMake on macOS can now create app bundles. (#2249)

Our CMake buildsystem is now able to create a working Emscripten Player. Just point to the emscripten toolchain file or use emcmake and you will get a working web player. Unit tests that don’t touch the filesystem are also supported. (#2253)

The man target in the CMake buildsystem failed when doing out-of-tree builds. (#2272)

The circular dependency check between FreeType and Harfbuzz was not working anymore since CMake 3.18. (#2274)

 

EasyRPG Player 0.6.2.1 “Pincer Attack – Patch 1”

Another release? You are not dreaming like Madotsuki – From now on we offer patches. They consist of cherry-picked improvements from our code base with the goal to provide fixes for crashes, regressions, security issues and minor new features faster. Don’t worry, there are no security related fixes, but we have now the ability to quickly publish one when this happens. With this new release model we gain more flexibility and improve your experience with our application.

Among the games with fixed issues are Vampires Dawn 2 and Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき). We are not aware of any game breaking bugs yet, the fixes are all cosmetic. The Wii port works again, in 0.6.2 the Player was stuck at the logo. As usual the detailed changelog is below.

The release cycle for our major releases (with the very long blog posts) will stay at 3 to 6 months. For bleeding-edge releases you can still use our Continuous builds or subscribe to the Android Beta program.

For package maintainers

This patch depends on liblcf 0.6.2, there is no new liblcf release. This way we keep the maintenance costs low because you only have to update the Player package.

Crash fixes

The Player does not crash anymore when certain broken/unsupported image files are loaded. It is unlikely that you encountered this bug because these images will fail to load in RPG_RT and close the program. (#2177)

Regressions fixed

We consider something a regression when it was working in a previous version of EasyRPG Player.

When the game used “..” in the filenames to traverse in a different path loading the file failed when the resulting path was the games root directory. This was used by the custom computer background feature of Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき). (#2176)

RPG Maker 2003 before the English release supports bottom and a top transparency for pictures. However in the last release we broke the handling of the RPG2k Show Picture command in RPG2k3. They occur when the game was created with RPG2k but later converted to RPG2k3. One of these games is Vampires Dawn 2. This wrong transparency is stored in savegames. To fix it completely you have to change the map once (#2178).

The Wii port was completely broken. (#2186)

Resting in the Inn when the Inn costs money works again. You get what you pay for. (#2212)

The wrong states were removed after a battle ended. (#2213)

Event/Interpreter

The damage calculation of the Simulate Attack event command was incorrect. The zombies in the unreleased game Diablo Lab are now damaging the hero. (#2194)

The Eyes in the Crying Eyes Cave in Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき) were not updating properly due to a bug in our update logic for off-screen bitmaps. (#2204)

Move Routes

The algorithm for movement type “Random” matches now the RPG_RT algorithm. (#1638)

In the intro cutscene of the unreleased game Saint Seiya – Il Mito the event facing was incorrect. We are aware of multiple facing issues related to facing lock, but here we only fixed this specific case. Fixing all of them is too complex for a patch release. (#2193)

Battle

The variance value is now correctly applied in the damage calculation. (#2157)

The hit rate algorithm for physical attack is now correct. (#2215)

The screen flashes now in the RPG2k3 battle when a critical hit occurred. (#2215)

Savegames

If an actor belonged to a class, the experience points were wrong after loading a savegame. (#2215)

Building

Fixes for the Amiga build (uses now SDL2). (#2188)

Unit tests were broken in the release tarball because we forgot to include some files. (#2222)

Other

Debug scene improvements (#2214)

  • Full Heal was broken and you had to reopen the scene under some conditions
  • Common events with a ID > 100 are now callable
  • Gold has now only 6 instead of 7 digits

For Developers

The requirement on SDL 2.0.5 is now enforced. Previously older versions of SDL2 were accepted but the compilation failed. (#2100)

 

EasyRPG Player 0.6.2 “Pincer Attack”

Look what Alex found while treasure hunting: A new version of EasyRPG Player! (Animation by @Lord_Schoko, thanks!)

Here we go again. The forced home office gave us some time to do the final polishing and testing for the next minor release of EasyRPG Player. As promised it contains many accuracy improvements for the interpreter and move routes. Most games should work now (if they don’t use any patching, DynRPG, etc.).

Unfortunately we were not able to work a lot on the RPG Maker 2003 battle system: Many features are still buggy/unimplemented and you have to wait for another release. But the interpreter part should be fully working – Most limitations are visual.

RPG Maker 2000 has been released 20 years ago this month. And here we are, letting you run its games and saving its legacy for the future.

Get it from the Download page (or the Android Play Store), enjoy some RPG Maker games and #StayAtHome. :)

Crash fixes

Empty shops don’t crash any more. (#1844)

Fixed crashes when starting a battle in Home. When a battle event does an animation as the first command, which also triggers a flash effect on the first frame, the game crashed. (#1929, #1933)

Known regressions in this release

When a message with a face is shown there will be a short 1-frame flicker of the face when a new page is displayed. This is resolved as a part of another huge message code rewrite which we didn’t want to add to this release as it needs more testing.

Regressions fixed

Here you will find games that worked in older versions of the Player but were broken in newer releases of the Player.

Pictures disappeared after a flash effect when they had an alpha channel / transparency. (#1575)

Battlers with Battle Animations (RPG Maker 2003 only) were not displayed until they made an action. This affected Captain Novolin RPG and Vampires Dawn 2. (#1826)

The RPG Maker 2000 battle crashed when self destruct was used. (#1880)

The tilemap renderer optimisation invented for the 3DS was not handling a few edge cases resulting in black tiles being rendered: Lower layer tiles can be in some cases above Upper tiles (when they are tiles with star attribute). Most of the optimisations were disabled, in favour of correct rendering. Fixes the intro of Cumbound – The War against Gayass. (#1577, #1857, #1898)

A previous patch disabled resetting of text colour after a line break which is correct for messages but this broke the rendering of the Stay option in Inns when not having enough money. (#1904)

Performance

Because the compatibility of the Player is really good by now, we can focus on performance improvisations.

Much faster (2-3x) database parsing. Games load now much faster. This is a liblcf (our parser library) optimisation but this is so significant that we mention it here because it affects the Player. (liblcf#343)

This Player release received many significant performance improvements that speed up the start-up, the interpreter and the renderer. Furthermore the FPS handling was refined and recovers better from lag spikes. (#1780)

Common events are not reinitialized any more when they completed – Instead their index is only reset to 0 making common event restarts a very cheap and fast operation in common event heavy games. (#1764) A similar optimisation is available for Parallel processes. (#1884)

Faster text processing and rendering. (#1956, #1964)

The Player supports various pixel formats. Moving the most common formats (RGBA) to the start of the list gives a minor speedup in every drawing operation. (#1959)

Faster handling of Drawables (our abstraction for everything you see on the screen). (#1975)

Much faster reading of Switches/Variables and faster range operations. Single writes could not be optimized further. (#1984)

Slightly faster rendering and Flip blit is now noticeable faster (but flip is only used by the FaceSet, therefore not noticeable in real workloads). (#1990)

Optimized weather rendering. (#1991)

Optimized cache lookup. (#1993)

Intel VTune, a performance and gpu rendering profiler, is now supported. (#2021) Additionally benchmark programs such as #1987 were added that allow the detection of performance regressions easily.

The FPS logic was refactored and runs now much smoother in low FPS situations. Long freezes at 0 FPS are completely gone now. Additionally the FPS are not locked to 60 FPS any more, they can be changed to any arbitrary value or sync to the refresh rate of your display. (#2017)

Optimized tilemap rendering. (#2028)

Some math (e.g. square root) operations run now slightly faster because the compiler flags were tuned. (#2139)

Audio

When switching the audio source (e.g. from speaker to headphone) the audio playback stopped. This was a SDL2 bug fixed in a later release. (#1596)

Lime’s minigame in Witch’s Heart does not lag any more. To reduce slow disc reads sound effects were completely decoded, resampled and cached when being played for the first time. The problem here was that the SE file played is very long – Decoding it took 100 ms. Now the Player only decodes on load and resamples in the audio thread – The file loads now in 7 ms. (#1833, #2086)

The Forest World Music continued playing when returning to the Nexus in Yume Nikki. (#1874)

Playing Opus audio (not natively supported by RPG_RT, needs a custom patch) does not crash any more on Intel Celeron and Intel Pentium processors. The library was compiled with features (instruction set AVX) not supported on these CPUs. (#2059)

Event/Interpreter (#1707)

The accuracy of the interpreter was significantly improved resolving many bugs that were caused by minor timing issues. (#1707, #1871)

The interpreter state is now properly preserved in and restored from savegames. Before it was possible that the interpreter skipped a command after loading. (#757, #1740, #1742)

CommandChangeClass is now fully supported. RPG_RT has multiple bugs that we fixed: (#759)

  • Unsetting the class combined with “Set level to 1” crashes with “Invalid Job specified”
  • When the target class is the same with “Learn skills” enabled RPG_RT forgets to learn the skills available at level 1

The Change Tileset command was not updating the tileset of events. Fixes the look of the time gauge in the final battle of Seraphic Blue. (#1060)

Calling multiple scenes on the same frame has now the correct behaviour, e.g. a battle start will cancel a pending menu call. (#1642)

Death handlers are now supported in the RPG Maker 2003 battle system. (#1648)

The black screen after the Amusement Park Clown Hell Event and other events that force a wakeup in Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき) is fixed. (#1777)

Maybe you remember the obscure feature of Set Vehicle Location discussed in previous blog posts: You can do instant teleports, even across maps, when the vehicle ID -1 is used. By now we emulated this via a normal teleport but this was not enough for Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき): It needed a better emulation and this better emulation fixed many bugs (actually all we know about in this but feel free to find new ones). (#1782, #1861, #1862, #2043)

  • The music room failed with “Unknown Event 10005” (#1778). Contrary to normal teleports, vehicle teleports don’t reset the event IDs. This means that This Event references were expected to still work.
  • You can now save tracks as favourites. This was broken before because the game does a Vehicle Teleport to the main room and immediately teleports back. Before the Player incorrectly executed a clean up auto-start event. (#1864)
  • The second music room you can enter from the first room works now. (#2049)
  • The wallpaper selection was almost unusable because it auto-selected the first item automatically. (#1641)

Vehicle teleports from parallel events are now forbidden – In RPG_RT they fail with an error message. (#1877)

If both a common event and a map event are auto-start and can
run on the current frame, RPG_RT will push both of them onto
the stack and execute the interpreter. This is very similar to
as if the common event called the map event. (#1779)

Lufia V: For the Savior soft locked during the intro. (#1840)

Modifiers for ATK/DEF/etc. are now clamped correctly. Fixes distributing EXP in the Inn of Three Magic Girl (TMG). (#1865) Content warning: Hentai. The video was censored by us.

Fixed black screen after selecting Jehridan on the world map in Dhux’s Scar.  (transition bug, #1913)

CommandStoreEventID always returns the highest ID – even when the event was deleted. (#1915)

Correct timing for waits during screen pan operations. (#1932)

The transparency option of Change Actor Graphic is now supported. (#2030)
Labels: Event/Interpreter, Patch available

Fix hang in 月藍傳奇2 after walking through a secret door. (#2038)

The key input in the scene selection of ケツアクメ120連発 ケツアヘ傑作選 (2012紅白No.016) was not working: The game is a RPG2k Value! game but the Key Input Processing command looked like a RPG2k3 command. Because 2k and 2k3 have incompatible Key Input Processing commands this failed. 2k3 key inputs are unsupported by 2k and were disabled for this engine. (#2126)

Fixed the key input in the “Improve” menu of Saint Seiya Densetsu. This is another type of strange Key Input Processing behaviour: The command was not processed like RPG2k3 <1.05 command but like as RPG2k Value! command. All strange edge cases of this command are now fully supported. This game also breaks the size record: The former leader was Äedemphia with 1.2 GB, this game has 1.6 GB. (#2140)

Setting the sail in Still Mate does not soft lock any more. Here we discovered a bug in the Change Variable event command, it is surprising that a bug in such a commonly known command went unnoticed for years: When a variable range is the target of the operation the result of the operation must be reevaluated for each element. This game generated random numbers through this command and waited until the numbers were different. Because our implementation only picked one random number and assigned it to all elements in the range this check failed forever. (#2155)

In 進めアレックス a treasure chest, that is actually a vehicle, appeared when fighting an enemy. We don’t know about the purpose of the vehicle but we found a bug in RPG Maker 2000: Events always have a Map ID of 0. This game stored location of the attacked monster and applied it to the vehicle. Because the map ID is 0 the vehicle should never appear on the map. (#2156)

Time Traveler continues at the end of chapter 6 when playing the piano. When and how this was fixed is unknown. But who cares, it is fixed :).

Move Routes

In Mondschein the kid will not run away from the mother any more (move speed too high). As with many resolved issues that is related to when events update depending on how a teleport was invoked. (#1261)

The soft lock in the dancing scene of Killer Bear is resolved. Repeating move routes were not properly marked as finished when the last move command was a non-move command such as Turn. (#1853)

Fixes for jumping:

  • Turn commands are now ignored while jumping. (#1936)
  • The height of the jump does not affect the sprite rendering order (#1937) or the position of battle animations any more. (#1938)

Battle

We planned to fix all the known bugs in the RPG Maker 2003 battle but we found no time for it. Sorry :(.

Battle animation can now shake the screen in RPG Maker 2003. (#1767)

Pictures and Weather are now fully supported in battle scenes (#1488, #2003). The picture support was the final step to fully supporting RPG Maker 2003 v1.12. (#1263)

The battle in DQ2 悪霊の勇者・製品版 didn’t end after defeating the Bomb Rock (#1875)

The Boss battle in Eternal Legends ended after the 1st phase. (#1998)

Correct interaction of battle end conditions with running events: RPG Maker 2000 finishes the current event, RPG Maker 2003 stops execution immediately. (#2001)

In すでに私たちは地獄のまっただ中でした hidden enemies were hit by attacks that target the entire party. This affected any game that used hidden enemies. (#2102)

Defend and Charge are now properly reset. Before they stayed persistent for the entire battle or when the action was cancelled. (#2107)

When party members were added or removed by an event during the battle turn the attack order is now correct. (#2123)

Savegames

Loading RPG_RT savegames sometimes resulted in a screen shake. This was caused by an incorrect interpretation of the shake continuous flag: The relevant one is actually shake time left that is initialized to 65336. This means a continuous shake ends after 18.2 seconds.  (#1668)

Support for a bug to detect savegame loading via the Key Input Processing event command. This bug works by using a variable >255 as the target variable for Time until key input and saving the game. When saving, the field for storing this variable is too small causing an integer overflow. By checking whether the new variable reached via overflow is set to 0 after loading, the game can determine whether it was just loaded. (#1674)

RPG_RT compatible handling of Game System chunks. (#1842)

The title image was sometimes lost when resetting with F12. We are still aware of issues concerning incomplete clean-up. When you encounter issues after starting a new game simply restart the Player as a workaround. (#2023)

The Save window failed to render when party members had no face graphic (#2034)

RPG_RT compatible transition chunk values. (#2054)

RPG_RT compatible escape/teleport target values. (#2056)

When the savegame had a different system graphic than the title screen the new system graphic was already visible for a short moment while fading out from the load scene. (#2111)

Messages

In Ahriman’s Prophecy the text overlapped with the face graphic after a teleport. (#1781)

The text rendering in shops is now correct when a face is displayed. (#1844)

Improved message and window animation timings. (#1900)

Some choices were incorrectly displayed in Yume2kki (ゆめ2っき). (#2048)

Window/Scenes

The shop scene rendered Charsets incorrectly when the image file had non-default dimensions. (#1315)

The debug scene learned how to call common events. (#1832)

Control characters like newlines in messages are not processed anymore. They caused incorrect text rendering. They can be inserted by game developers by accident through copy-paste from a text editor. (#1873)

The Gold Window ignored message opacity settings. (#1908)

When a japanese game is executed the equipment scene shows a different arrow to match RPG_RT better. (#1918)

The fade delay for New Game / Load Game / Back to Title matches now RPG_RT. (#1939)

Pressing F12 will display a countdown before returning to the title screen. This solves issues in applications such as Steam that bind screenshots to F12. (#2010)

Scrollable windows display now animated up/down arrows. (#2109)

FileFinder

The Official “Traditional Chinese” RTP is now supported. (#1888)

Symbolic links are now valid project paths on Linux. (#1906)

The RTP search on Linux follows now the XDG standard. (#1924)

Faster start-up on Linux when Wine is installed and the registry scanned for RTPs. (#1916)

The RTP path contained trailing “/” which broke RTP loading on some platforms. (#2064)

The detection whether the operating system exposes the file type directly when enumerating directories was improved (initial start-up on macOS and BSD is now faster). (#2065)

Pictures (#1703)

Spritesheets use now a subimage of the original picture. This saves memory and is much faster because no copying is needed any more. This sounds like an obvious optimisation but the blocker was that other parts of the picture became visible before while rotating. (#1093)

Pictures are now updated before events. (#1125)

Pictures stop moving now while a message is visible except on RPG Maker 2003 English where non-blocking is the default. It is possible that this breaks games patched with the UnlockPicPatch. (#1168)

Support for the “affected by flash” picture setting. (#1362)

Pictures are correctly loaded from savegames. (#1582)

In Destined the boss picture moved upwards when damaged. This is solved by emulating a picture bug in old engine versions: Move Picture is ignored when the picture is fixed to the map. (#1741, #1969)

Use correct flash color. (#1944)

Picture wave effect is more accurate. (#1946, #1949)

The outdated bitmap format used by Aëdemphia is now supported. (#2016)

Weather

Sandstorm and Fog are now looking perfect. As you can see from all the linked issues this was a huge effort and the math behind it is worth another blog post. (#1737, #1945, #1992, #2011, #2114)

More accurate Rain and Snow effects. (#2005, #2069)

Transitions (#1715)

ShowScreen-Transitions are ignored when the screen is already visible. Instant transitions are now really instant. (#1600, #1931)

In RPG_RT transitions will execute in-place (code wise they execute a loop that will return when the transition is finished) but we can’t do it this way because some of our platforms – emscripten and libretro – require that we return from the main loop every frame otherwise they will hang. After a huge refactoring we can now simulate this behaviour through asynchronous transitions. What does this mean for you as a gamer? The compatibility took a huge step forward again, e.g. Amillusion (#1819) works now! (#1445, #1783, #1784, #1787, #1887)

Transitions look more correct when changing maps in COLORS: Lost Memories. (#1801)

Random blocks up/down were down/up. (#1947)

Transitions looked incorrectly when tiles on the tilemap had transparency. (#2117)

Animations

Battle animations are now frame accurate and saved in a RPG_RT compatible way. (#1372, #1757)

Battle animations that affect the entire map were rendered at the wrong position. (#1951)

Animations affecting the map were clipped when moving. (#2006)

Web Player (Emscripten)

The web player got a huge speed gain by switching to the new web technology web assembly (WASM). Contrary to asm.js which was always a bit experimental and had some limitations, WASM is an official web standard and is twice as fast in some games. (#1625, #1917)

The web player does not fail to start any more when the game name matches a directory in the virtual file system (bin, home, etc…) (#1255)

Newer Chrome versions prevent audio playback unless there is user interaction because of abuse by advertising companies. The audio initialisation is now delayed. (#1868)

Games with non-canonical paths (e.g. “../Pictures/PicFile”) are now supported. (#1896)

Other platforms

Android:

  • We dropped the armeabi architecture and ship now x86_64 libraries. According to Google Play the device compatibility changed by 0, we only replaced an outdated architecture with an up-to-date one. (#1911)
  • When the landscape orientation is forced in the settings both landscape orientations (as you know it from the Youtube app, #2121)
  • The touch button labels were too large on some Android systems. (#2121)

Switch:

  • Update to a newer libnx version, making it compatible with firmware 9.0.0. (#1894, #1994)
  • Support for the left thumbstick (#2082)
  • Due to a bug the B button was not working properly (#2082)

3DS:

  • BGM does not play too fast any more. (#1275)
  • Fix RTP loading. (#2063)
  • Faster sound effect loading. (#2086)

For Developers

The namespace Game_Temp that contained various global variables was removed and the variables moved to more appropriate locations. (#1240, #1867, #2025)

We require now the C++ language standard C++14. The lowest GCC compiler supporting this fully is GCC5 (#1561, #1882). This allows optimisations such as #1960, #1963 and #1981. (constexpr)

File and Directory access code was refactored to make implementing IO for different platforms easier. (#1910, #2008)

The Windows toolchain was updated from Visual Studio 2017 to 2019. The latest version of the 2019 update is the only version we support. (#1965)

Many compiler warnings were resolved. (#1966)

Fixed linking against SDL 2.0.10 on Windows. (#1971)

The unit tests use now a single executable instead of individual executables per test set. This improves the linking speed significantly. (#1976)

Many short functions moved to header with inline attribute to avoid function calls. (#1977)

Fixed Windows Debug assertion failures. (#2045)

In an ongoing approach to get rid of all the auxiliary Makefiles to build all our different ports and to improve build times the additional platform files were reorganized in subdirectories. (#2160)

Other

Experimental feature:  Multi-Game Save Importing (#1854, #1860). The Player supports now importing of savegames from other games directly through the title scene. For example Legion Saga and The Way accept the saves of there predecessors. To enable this feature you have to provide a easyrpg.ini in the game directory.

When an image is missing the amount of warnings reported was reduced. (#2092)

liblcf (RPG Maker File parser)

Support for Maniac Patch Event commands. These are just names that can be referenced in the Player later, it does not improve game compatibility. (#271)

Fixed incorrect defaults for savegame chunks: system (#333), event flash colors, vehicle sprites (#334), death handler (#338), pictures (#346) and transitions (#357).

As with Player the liblcf requires now at least a C++14 compatible compiler (GCC5, #339)

Much faster database parsing (#343)

EasyRPG Player 0.6.1 “Surprise Attack”

Before we all leave into the summer vacation we want to announce the next release: EasyRPG Player 0.6.1 “Surprise Attack”. Our journey through the battle systems continues and we are happy to announce: The RPG Maker 2000 Battle System is fully implemented! For Player 0.6.2 we plan to achieve the same goal for the RPG Maker 2003 battle system.

Of course we didn’t ignore the world outside of the battle system: We developed a method to get a frame-per-frame dump of the game state: We create a test case and combine it with a Parallel Event which opens the Save scene once per frame. With this simple idea we get a frame-per-frame dump of the game state. The saving is automatically detected by a script when the savegame changes and the relevant savegame data extracted and displayed. This made it possible to implement many, before almost impossible to debug, timing fixes and bringing the interpreter closer to perfection! Unfortunately we won’t be able to explain them all to you because we are talking here about corner cases which result in a difference of 1 frame in the execution timing. For many of these cases we don’t even know games that depend on them, which means no pictures or videos in the blog for this :(. Additionally for 0.6.2 there are already many patches in the queue which will improve the accuracy of the interpreter and savegames even more but we decided to delay them because they are very complex.

We also added made some quality of life improvements. It doesn’t matter anymore which RTP you install (we recommend the Official English versions from rpgmakerweb.com), the Player will detect the installed RTP and the RTP used by the game and load the correct assets. Additionally the Debug scene learned new features: The page you had open is remembered and you can now heal the party and teleport across the map.

We also want to remind you that EasyRPG Player is now available as a libretro core which means the Player can run as part of RetroArch. More exotic platforms like the SNES Mini are not maintained by us, please tell the corresponding maintainers to update the Player to the latest version :).

Vehicle Glitch Exhibition

First lets have some fun: Here you can see four vehicle glitches now supported by EasyRPG Player.

Fixed regressions

Our previous release, 0.6.0, had a huge amount of regressions. We improved the procedure how we test our releases, e.g. by pushing APKs for testing to Google Play and waiting for feedback. This way we are optimistic that no significant regression are in 0.6.1.

Here are the fixed regressions:

As promised the picture zoom in the Smash Bros. clone もしもスマブラだったら works again. (#1662)

The immersive fullscreen mode in Android resulted in the rendering of a white bar at the bottom. (#1667)

The actors had only 1 HP in DBZ: The Legend of Z due to a bug in our new scene calling code. This also affected other games because the event command right after the battle call was executed. (#1685, #1705)

The Windows registry was not searched anymore for RTPs. (#1673)

Assets were not found in the RTP folder anymore when they were not listed in the rtp translation table. (#1709, #1754)

When using a potion or any other healing item from the menu the amount was not decrementing. (#1744)

Fixes delayed for the next release (0.6.2)

We are aware of two issues in Yume2kki:

  • The music room is broken in newer versions of the game
  • The “Amusement park clown hell event” and other events that force a wakeup get stuck in a blackscreen (this worked before, we broke it in 0.5.4)

We already have fixes for them but they depend on another complex interpreter accuracy rewrite. For releases we need to decide when we stop to accept complex patches and move to pre-release testing.  Because these fixes depend on this delayed patch these fixes are delayed, too.

We will announce on Twitter when our continuous build ships these patches and additionally provide a Beta APK via the Google Play Beta program.

On slower systems Lime’s minigame in Witch’s Heart has significant lags which make it unplayable. A workaround is disabling the audio during the minigame. We learned very late about this issue therefore we couldn’t fix it on time.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

Crash fixes

Everything which terminates or freezes (must be terminated through the task manager) the Player without showing an error message is considered a crash. Usually the fix consists of showing an error message and closing the Player afterwards because the problem is a fatal game bug. This will still cause the lose of all unsaved data but at least the user knows why.

Using Enter Hero Name with an invalid actor shows now an error message instead of crashing. (#1719)

When entering “The Depths” in Yume2kki the Player does not run out of memory anymore and crash. (#1755)

When an invalid ExFont picture is loaded a warning is displayed and the built-in fallback is used. (#1756)

The message when a map file was not found is now more helpful and closes the Player with an error message. (#1730, #1756)

Our SDL1.2 renderer falls back to windowed mode when the requested fullscreen mode is unavailable but the logic was wrong and it executed an endless loop instead. We don’t use SDL1.2 anymore on any major platform, therefore this probably never affected you. (#1692)

Map

Using a huge amount of test cases the timing of the interpreter was further analyzed and reworked which fixed a significant amount of bugs. It is not possible to determine which games were fixed by which patch but when a known game issue was fixed you find it mentioned later in this section. (#1623, #1628, #1664)

The execution order of parallel map events that show message boxes is now correct. (#662)

The moment events with “Player touch” or “Event touch” start trigger execute now at the correct moment: Player touch when the Player is about to enter the tile and Event touch when the Player is on the tile (#886, #1697).

In Doraemon: Nobita’s Resident Evil (のび太のBIOHAZARD) the sound effect of the zombies was quickly repeated when they were stuck while walking against a wall. This spammed hundreds of “No free channel” warnings and was very noisy. (#998)

The game COLORS: Lost Memories does not get stuck in an infinite loop anymore when reading a sign. (#1247)

The endless intro loop in Final Tear 3 was fixed. (#1316)

A 8-way movement script (by pressing two arrows at the same time) created by a M3Kat was not working correctly in EasyRPG Player. (#1346)

The color handling for choices in messages was incorrect: The colors are not reset when the color command is part of a choice. (#1361)

A strange interaction of teleports while opening the menu is now properly implemented. (#1457)

Bombs explode now in Grimps: Squeaking of the Dead. (#1595)

Events have a limit of 10000 commands per frame before they are interrupted. The behaviour in the Player was incorrect: The End-case of a conditional branch didn’t count to this limit. (#1613)

Correctness changes when calling a scene: (#1642, #1658)

  • Event execution continues in the current frame when a scene is called (except for the caller) but each event only runs one command (this is an obscure RPG_RT behaviour/bug we must support)
  • When multiple events call a scene only the last called scene is respected

The airship is now always drawn above the tilemap. (#1683)

Various accuracy improvements for the teleport commands. (#1624, #1694)

Events with negative coordinates are not rendered anymore on non-looping maps. (#1676)

Move to Variable location on the same map behaves now like a normal teleport instead of moving the party directly. (#1693)

Screen X and Screen Y of player and events were wrong on looping maps. (#1699)

The accuracy of timers was improved, they match now exactly the RPG_RT behaviour. (#1702)

Panoramas are now frame perfect to RPG_RT, including all strange “background jumps” bugs when changing the Panorama on looping maps. (#1704)

Scene calls are not possible anymore when a message box is visible. (#1705)

The menu opening is now correctly delayed until the Player finished moving on the next tile and until an active move route is finished. (#1714)

Transition fixes:

  • Sometimes, when changing the map in the game OFF, showed the next map too early in the first frames which resulted in an ugly flicker. (#1505)
  • The transition timings between the different scenes are now correct
  • When the screen is erased by an event the Map will stay black even when you open and close the menu
  • The debug scene can’t interrupt scene calls anymore, before it was possible to cancel random encounters with this. (#1717)

When a game was converted from RPG Maker 2000 to 2003 the shake event was incorrectly handled resulting in infinite screen shake which made the game unplayable. (#1743)

Equipment with Escape or Teleport skill is not usable from the menu anymore and items with skills play now the skill sound effect. (#1745)

Battle animations are now affected by screen flash (#1774)

States that heal while walking (RPG Maker 2003 feature) are now supported but we are not sure if any game uses this. (#1804)

While a move route is active, states don’t inflict damage or heal while moving. (#1805, #1806)

Vehicles can be unboarded on tiles which contain events that have no active event page. (#1828)

The XO-Puzzle in Die Reise ins All can be completed. There was a bug in obtaining the Terrain ID when tile substitution was used. (#1834)

Battle

We are happy to announce that the RPG Maker 2000 Battle system is complete. Algorithm wise the RPG Maker 2003 battle system is also complete but animations, timings etc. are still off. The final implemented features are (#821):

  • Equipment states. RPG Maker 2003 contains a feature we call “Equipment states”. Equipment can automatically invoke skills when equipped. This appears to be only usable for cursed equipment which can’t be unequipped because states are auto-healed when the equipment is removed. We also emulate the bug that states which are removed after battle are invoked after a full recovery or after sleeping in an Inn. (#1770)
  • The same applies for Skills where the inflict and the recover option can be inverted. This is now also supported (#1490)

When starting a new game or teleporting via a Parallel event and starting a battle directly the transition in RPG_RT looks glitchy. This behaviour is now replicated in EasyRPG Player. (#1382)

When a battle event page disables a switch that is a start condition for another battle event page the next page is not executed anymore. This fixes the “Steal” skill in Heaven and Hell Episode 3, which stole three times from the enemy instead of one. (#985, #1652)

The timings of the RPG Maker 2000 Battle Console/Message Box are now, with some minor exceptions, frame accurate. This was again a time consuming task, basically all frame timings during battle were recorded in RPG_RT and exactly replicated in our Player. Now the battles feel much more natural. (#1677, #1725, #1726, #1785)

The screen shake when a character receives damages matches now the RPG_RT shake. (#1678)

The magic point calculation for skills that cost a percentage instead of a fixed value is now correct. (#1684)

In RPG Maker 2003 weapons can invoke skills. Even when the weapon is equipped it will appear in the skills list. This was already partially supported  but we missed on corner case: When the equipped weapon is the only weapon of this type, casting skills simply failed. (#1722, #1797)

Screen shake of monsters was off by 1 frame and not fully on sync with the background. (#1735)

Items that revive battlers work in RPG Maker 2003 battle. We are 99% sure this worked before but no idea when we broke this. (Reported for “Trank der Ewigkeit” in Vampires Dawn 2, #1748)

Contrary to RPG Maker 2003 the flags for dual wield etc. are not saved in RPG Maker 2000 savegames. The Player ignores this information now when loading a 2000 savegame. This fixes dual wield in Phantasia Gaiden and probably other RPG Maker 2000 games after loading a savegame. (#1789, #1794)

The rendering order of monsters was wrong. (#1791)

The inventory is now sorted by the ID of the item. The inventory of old savegames  is sorted upon load. (#1799)

When the battle starts with a “First strike” escape always succeeds on the first turn. (#1830)

Enemies can now use skills which turn switches on or off. (#1830)

Movement

The main game changer which fixed 10 movement issues at once is #1601 (they are explained below in this section). It’s too difficult to explain all the nuances of this pull request but to sum it up: Via careful testing of movement behaviour in RPG_RT and the goal to reach frame perfect animations, movements and stop count (frames to wait between moves) many timing issues were resolved.

And the second game changer was a huge refactor for the “Make Way” algorithm. When an event walks into another event, then the event that was walked into gets a chance to run the interpreter early and move away. This had many small inaccuracies and was broken e.g. for jump and crossing of map borders. (#1606, #1675, #1687)

RPG_RT has a funny side effect in the movement handling which allows to step in place: Create a parallel event which does:

SetMoveRoute: Player, Decrease Speed, Decrease Speed
Wait for Movement
SetMoveRoute: Player, Increase Speed, Increase Speed
Wait for Movement

When this event executes the hero will step in place and this is now supported. (#663)

Get On/Off Vehicle failed when the Vehicle is entered while a move route is active. (#1267, #1429)

The movement accuracy improvements fixed minor visual issues in Ascendence. (#1293)

Spinning events don’t reset there spinning direction anymore when you talk to them. (#1585)

When entering a ramp in Lakria Legends the hero doesn’t enter an endless up-down-movement anymore. Events with “On Collision” trigger don’t execute while a move route is active. (#1593)

Move towards player move commands behave now correctly. (#1604)

Events were unable to jump on tiles that were occupied by events on different layers. (#1612)

MoveType toward/away movement type behaves now as in RPG_RT. (#1644)

When an event has a cycle move type (horizontal or vertical) and an “Event Touch” start condition the event stops now the movement when the Player is in it’s path instead of inversing the direction. (#1659)

More, highly specific issues, fixed in the unreleased minigame Kanga Punch: #1587, #1654 and #1671

Savegames

The flash color of a screen/character flash effect is now saved. (#1772)

Vehicle types were not correctly written into savegames. Fortunately we save a version information since 0.6.0 which allows us to add compatibility hacks for fixing old savegames. (#1796)

Android

The menu text is not purple anymore on newer Android versions. (#1670)

Emscripten (Web Player)

When the screen is faded out the web player will wait now until all currently pending images are downloaded. This makes map changes look much nicer because the assets won’t pop in anymore after the transition is finished. (#1694)

libretro/RetroArch

We officially support the libretro core of EasyRPG Player now. Read the dedicated blog post for more information. (#1464)

Other

The title scene renders now a black background when no title graphic is specified in the editor, before the system graphic was used (as hide title does). (#1728)

Almost since the beginning we supported RTP lookup for Japanese to Other and Other to Japanese. This avoided many issues because you were not required to figure out how to install the Japanese RTP but other common lookups like Don Miguel English RTP (the inofficial RPG Maker 2000 RTP) to Official RPG Maker 2000 were not supported. This changes now! Player detects now all installed RTP and the game RTP and will do a RTP-to-RTP lookup. Additionally, for our Linux users, detecting of the installed RTP in a 64-bit Wine Prefix was fixed. (#802, #1754)

For a smoother game play experience the Player is caching recently used assets in memory. The cache had no upper limit and only removed resources from the cache if they were not used for a certain amount of time. This strategy required a huge amount of memory which were unavailable on some of our ports. The new cache is now much smarter and even supports the caching of effects (Screen Tone) which gives a speedup on maps which have many events. A notable speedup happens in “The Depths” in Yume2kki, before the map was almost unplayable. (#1760)

The Game Browser (shown when no game is found in the current folder) shows now the Player version in the about page. (#1843)

We noticed that some games contain the same folder twice in the archive, e.g. TITLE and Title. This is no problem on Windows because the system is case insensitive and will simply merge the folder but on other systems assets will fail to load. We emit now a warning on startup when a game has such a folder structure. (#1594)

Improved Debug Scene (#1813, #1817):

  • You can now teleport across maps
  • The party can be completely healed
  • The indices of the various options are remembered, even when you close the scene

We listened to your feedback: In 0.6.0 we added a noisy warning that always popped up when a RTP asset is used reminding you that the RTP is not installed. Unfortunately this warning resulted in many users giving us bad ratings because of “Yellow text”, even more bad ratings than we got before for “Silence” (because the audio file is missing). We disabled the warning for missing Music/Sound, enjoy the silence instead. (#1672)

Building

Various build fixes for MorphOS and AmigaOS4. (#1682, #1686)

CMake supports now both resamplers: speexdsp and libsamplerate. (#1746)

The tarball of 0.6.1 contains now all files necessary to build with CMake. (#1835)

 

 

Official libretro/RetroArch support for EasyRPG Player

RetroArch is a frontend for emulators, game engines and media players which is powered by the libretro API that provides an abstraction layer to connect other applications (so called  “cores”) to RetroArch.

EasyRPG Player is now supporting libretro including all features you know from our other ports, which means you can decide if you want to use any RetroArch specific features not (yet) provided by our standalone version.

We will continue maintaining and improving our standalone version. See libretro support as a bonus feature. We don’t see RetroArch as a competitor, you can decide which version you prefer :).

For stability and maintenance reasons the release schedule will be, when 0.6.1 is released, linked to our official schedule which means the core is always updated after a new official release is announced in the blog.

Features

Notable features compared to the normal version:

  • Gamepad button remapping
  • Better file browser
  • Touch UI on any platform
  • Shaders
  • Simple install of WildMidi instruments via the built-in content downloader
  • Everything else RetroArch offers ;) (when applicable, EasyRPG Player is not an emulator)

Download & Platform support

We don’t provide our own builds for it, instead use the core updater of RetroArch or download it from the libretro buildbot.

The core is available for the following platforms/architectures:

  • Windows (32 and 64bit)
  • Linux (64bit, ARM hardfloat and ARM Neon)
  • macOS
  • Android (only ARM, not for x86 due to build issues but your smartphone/tablet is usually ARM-based)
  • iOS (the only platform we don’t really support yet, due to lack of a touch UI)
  • SNES Classic & co. (Maintained by ModMyClassic)

A port for Vita and Switch is possible but due to lack of hardware for testing these are currently unsupported. Use our standalone ports instead. The 3DS is out of scope because of hardware limitations (our official port which is optimized for the 3DS already runs badly). Support for Wii and WiiU is not planned because these platforms are using big-endian byte ordering and compiling some libraries to these platforms really causes a headache. You can use our official Wii port instead. The same applies to emscripten, the web version requires many modifications to run properly, please use our own version of the web player instead.

Controls

Except for some functionality that is already provided by RetroArch (Reset, Fast Forward, Screenshot and FPS toggle) the keyboard mapping is the same as in the standalone EasyRPG Player.

RetroPad:

  • A: Confirm
  • B: Cancel
  • Y: Shift
  • Start: Confirm
  • Select: Reset game
  • X, R1-3, L1-3: RPG Maker games can use more buttons than the RetroPad has. You can map these 7 buttons in the core options.

Core options

  • Remapping of RetroPad X, R1-3 and L1-3.
  • You can decide whether the keyboard (normal EasyRPG Player button mapping), the RetroPad or both are used. Due to possible button mapping conflicts you can disable one of them here.
  • Debug/TestPlay mode can be toggled. This allows you to walk through walls by holding left CTRL or opening the debug menu with F10 (you can map them to the RetroPad)

For developers

To build it locally you can clone our repository and build it with CMake:

git submodule update --init
cmake . -DPLAYER_TARGET_PLATFORM=libretro -DBUILD_SHARED_LIBS=ON|OFF

Use ON or OFF depending on if your platform uses shared libraries for libretro, when you target your Desktop system, use ON.

This will use your platform libraries instead of “baking in” the dependencies, which is usually what you want. To compile dependencies (when cross-compiling) take a look at our buildscripts repository.

If you don’t want to use your system libraries or manually built libraries for whatever reason you can use the Makefile to invoke the “automagical voodoo-build” in the libretro-easyrpg fork. This is designed for the libretro buildbot and otherwise unsupported!