SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Forum for discussion of bugs, code, and other aspects of SoftMPU.

SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-6-28 @ 13:38

I'd like to improve the SoftMPU compatibility list (http://github.com/bjt42/softmpu/wiki). However, I only own a SB16, YMF718, and a handful of games that use intelligent mode MPU.

Update 22/10/2013 - All known intelligent-mode games are tested and working. Let me know if you find any others!

On the hardware side, I'd like to test compatibility with other genuine Sound Blasters and the various clones (e.g. Aztech, Crystal, ESS, Analog Devices).

Update 20/05/2014 - Most sound chipsets are tested and working. The following are still to be tested:

- Sound Blaster 1.0/2.0
- Pro Audio Spectrum
- Ensoniq Soundscape (Any)
- PCI soundcards


Some weird and wonderful setups are possible with SoftMPU, as the Sound Blaster and MPU don't even have to be on the same card (SB Live + RAP-10 MPU, anyone?).

If anyone fancies helping out, here's some hints for testing. SoftMPU can be downloaded here: http://bjt42.github.io/softmpu. It's not essential to have a real MT-32/CM-32L for these tests, as long as you have some sort of MIDI device, either built-in wavetable or external.

Game Testing

Ideally, your soundcard can be configured to run on IRQ2 or 9, as many games expect to find the MPU interface there. YMF71x cards support IRQ9, I'm sure there are others too. Testing with other IRQs is still useful, as many other games allow a user-specified IRQ or don't use interrupts.

Confirm there's no music without SoftMPU loaded.
Is there music with SoftMPU loaded (SB on IRQ2/9 if available)?
Is there music with SoftMPU loaded (SB on IRQ5 or 7)?
Does the game allow a user-specified IRQ?
Does the game produce buffer overflows on a Rev.0 MT-32?


Sound Card Testing

You will need a game that's already on the compatibility list. Ideally, you would use a game that requires MPU interrupts to test the sound card. Laser Squad is a good one because it allows a user-specified IRQ.

Confirm there's no music without SoftMPU loaded.
Does SoftMPU detect and initialise the card successfully?
Is there music with SoftMPU loaded?
Does the card support IRQ2 or 9?


Thanks to anyone who wants to help out :happy: Please post your results here and I'll update the list.
Last edited by bjt on 2013-10-22 @ 12:03, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Great Hierophant » 2013-6-28 @ 21:18

The list is longer than that :

A-10 Tank Killer
Codename : Iceman
Colonel's Bequest
Companions Of Xanth
Conquests of Camelot
Curse of Enchantia
Death Gate
David Wolf
Ecargxus
Eric the Unready
Gateway
Gateway II
Hero's Quest/Quest for Glory I
Hired Guns
Hoyle's Official Book of Games Volume I
Hoyle's Official Book of Games Volume II
Innocent until Caught
It Came from the Desert
King's Quest I : Quest for the Crown
Kings Quest IV
Laser Squad
Leisure Suit Larry 2
Leisure Suit Larry 3
Linewars II
Martian Memorandum
Mixed Up Mother Goose
Police Quest II
Princess Maker
Princess Maker 2
Sabre Team
Shadoworlds
Silpheed
Simon the Sorcerer
Sorcerian
Space Quest III
Spellcasting 101
Spellcasting 201
Spellcasting 301
Superhero League of Hoboken
Thexder II
TimeQuest
Ultima VI: The False Prophet
Waxworks
Wing Commander
Wing Commander II
Wonderland
Zeliard

I don't have a detailed report, but I tried WC 1 & 2 and LSL3 and they worked fine with my SB16 once I disabled the SBMPU401 interrupt. If LSL3 worked, then the rest of the Sierra SCI games will also work.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-6-28 @ 21:47

Yep, I removed the games already on the compatibility list. Which of the remaining ones are Sierra SCI titles?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Great Hierophant » 2013-6-28 @ 21:54

This is all that is left once the Sierra SCI games are removed :

A-10 Tank Killer
Companions Of Xanth
David Wolf
Ecargxus
Eric the Unready
Gateway II
Linewars II
Martian Memorandum
Princess Maker
Princess Maker 2
Sabre Team
Shadoworlds
Silpheed
Simon the Sorcerer
Sorcerian
Spellcasting 101
Spellcasting 201
Spellcasting 301
Superhero League of Hoboken
Thexder II
TimeQuest
Waxworks
Wonderland
Zeliard
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-6-29 @ 10:15

A few 10-minute tests, reloading saved games where possible.
HW: Intel DX4 100 + SB16 CT2230
AMD 5x86 150 Mhz + SB16 CT2940 (OPL-L)
K6-III+ 550 Mhz (DCed to 200 Mhz) + AWE32 CT3900

Gateway 2 - works
Spellcasting series - all work
Simon the Sorcerer - works

Eric the Unready tested on an Acer Magic S23 - works

By memory, SB env. was set to p220 / i7 / d1 in all machines.
Last edited by Jolaes76 on 2013-6-30 @ 16:00, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-6-30 @ 08:10

Great! Thanks for taking the time.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-01 @ 08:57

Remaining games to be tested:

A-10 Tank Killer
Companions Of Xanth
David Wolf
Ecargxus
Linewars II
Martian Memorandum
Princess Maker
Princess Maker 2
Sabre Team
Shadoworlds
Silpheed
Sorcerian
Superhero League of Hoboken
Thexder II
TimeQuest
Waxworks
Wonderland
Zeliard
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-01 @ 10:26

Just got to say it's funny how people have been complaining / winging about MPU401 intelligent interfaces. Now that a solution is here, nobody wants to test it :)
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bristlehog » 2013-7-01 @ 12:33

Alas, I have no external equipment yet. Planning to acquire a Yamaha FB-01, but it won't support the intelligent mode, right?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Gamecollector » 2013-7-01 @ 12:57

Don't have games. (Well, I have 3 games from this list).
Don't have anything with MIDI out. (My SoundMAX game port isn't plugged in motherboard. I'm too lazy).
Don't have a game port/midi in/midi out/joystick cable.
Don't have a MT-32 unit.
Etc.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-7-01 @ 17:13

Timequest and Waxworks are also OK (CT2940, CT3900, Acer S23)

Waxworks... I had to use the GoG version (yuck) :sealed: because that one contained the proper setup.exe. Yes, sometimes it is the other way round...
No big deal actually, but the guesswork would have been long for the proper command line switch for the MT32
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-02 @ 09:29

Thanks, have updated the compatibility list. We're making good progress!

Did any of those games have the option to specify an Roland/MPU IRQ? Also, do any of your sound cards support IRQ 2 or 9?

I found a compilation in my collection with A-10 Tank Killer so should be able to test it soon.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-7-02 @ 10:35

I do not know if both the original EGA and the later VGA version of A10 support MT32. I think both versions will start up if you specify MT32 as output device, even without SoftMPU. So no "blind-testing" is possible. I had a problem with my amp so I got no sound there, but communication with the MT32 began so I think it is OK as well (with A10 EGA and VGA as well)

I made a mistake (the resources) in my previous post which I have since deleted.
I did some more testing: I have set my cards at these resources:

CT2940 A240 I5 D1 P330
CT3900 A220 I7 D1 P330

These are working well.

Legend games (Timequest, Gateway 2 etc) usually have the option to change MT32 IRQ and the resource.cfg had to be set to SoftMPU settings. (in my case, IRQ 5 or 7)
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-02 @ 13:23

Good to know. I was under the impression that many of the games were hard-coded to IRQ2/9, but it seems like it's actually only a few. Even the first Gateway allows the IRQ to be changed, e.g.

gate mt32 5

looks for the MPU on IRQ5.

Right now I'm only aware of two that are hardcoded to IRQ2:

It Came From The Desert
Innocent Until Caught
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-7-02 @ 17:16

I think from the end of 1989, MT32 games that were hard-coded to IRQ2 started to disappear. With the appearance of the MPU IPC-T it was possible to change resources so game developers started to adapt to this fact. Mechwarrior (1989) is hardwired to IRQ2, but then again, it is one of the UART mode games AFAIK.

BTW, Silpheed also works with SoftMPU at IRQ 5 or 7.
(Selecting MT32 without having an MPU interface or SoftMpu loaded freezes the game at startup after the copyprot screen.)
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby robertmo » 2013-7-02 @ 18:48

Jolaes76 wrote:Mechwarrior (1989) is hardwired to IRQ2, but then again, it is one of the UART mode games AFAIK.

Mechwarrior uses intelligent mode.
BTW There are no uart games using irq.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-7-02 @ 19:27

Thanks for the correction.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-03 @ 09:50

I think both versions will start up if you specify MT32 as output device, even without SoftMPU.


Yep, my VGA version of A-10 (CD version 1.5) outputs MT-32 fine without SoftMPU. Maybe it's only the very first version that uses intelligent mode.

Updated testing list (added a couple from another thread, removed a few that work)

A-10 Tank Killer (first version)
Companions Of Xanth
David Wolf
Ecargxus
Elvira II: Jaws of Cerberus
Linewars II
Martian Memorandum
Princess Maker
Princess Maker 2
Sabre Team
Sensible Soccer
Shadoworlds
Sorcerian
Superhero League of Hoboken
Thexder II
Wonderland
Zeliard

It Came From The Desert doesn't work currently, but I have a fix for the next version.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-03 @ 18:04

I have a MPU401AT and currently running it on IRQ5 because I use a PCI SATA controller and it causes Gateway to lock up. It's the only game that locks up, so I agree that their aren't too many games that actually probe for the IRQ.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby j^aws » 2013-7-04 @ 00:23

bjt wrote:[...]
On the hardware side, I'd like to test compatibility with other genuine Sound Blasters and the various clones (e.g. Aztech, Crystal, ESS, Analog Devices).
[...]


Tried the following sound cards, and SoftMPU wouldn't initialise:

1) Aztech 2316A chipset (Crystal 4248) with OPL3 - lockup after recognising ports.
2) Opti x924 chipset (Crystal 4231) with OPL3 clone - lockup after recognising ports.
3) ESS Audiodrive 1688F chipset - no lockup, but wouldn't recognise all ports.
4) PCI Yamaha YMF24 - lockup, but can't remember if it recognised ports.

All done on a 440BX mobo with a P2@350Mhz. BTW, nice work!
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