Infogrames "All your cartoon favourites" games

Getting old Windows games working.

Infogrames "All your cartoon favourites" games

Postby AWesker » 2017-2-10 @ 01:04

Circa 1996-1997, Infogrames released several DOS/Windows conversions of some of their SNES (and in some cases, also Mega Drive) games branded under the "All your cartoon favourites" games. As far as I know, these were Asterix & Obelix, Lucky Luke, Spirou, The Smurfs, Tintin in Tibet and Tintin Prisoners of the Sun. And I wasn't able to get any of the Windows versions of them to properly run on Windows 10. They all demand 256 color mode, but even if you enable that, there are problems with all of them. Lucky Luke and Tintin Prisoners of the Sun show the game, but with wrong colors. Spirou and Tintin in Tibet show a black screen. And Asterix & Obelix and The Smurfs don't even show the screen. All of them seem to play and music/sounds effects come if you press buttons but it's useless if you can't see anything or you have wrong colors in the case of Lucky Luke and Tintin Prisoners of the Sun.

All these games have DOS versions which can be easily run under DOSBox, true, but neither of these DOS versions have MIDI support for the music. They can only be configured to use Sound Blaster/Pro/16/Awe 32, Adlib Gold and Gravis Ultrasound. The Windows versions, on the other hand, rely on MIDI music. And with the proper MIDI equipment, the music of all these games can reach fantastic. Much better than the SNES versions of all of them in my opinion, so I find the Windows versions to be the absolute best for all these games. I tried to get them working with dgVoodoo, which allowed me to get some old Windows games working, but there was no luck with these.

The only way I could get all the Windows versions of these games working was through WMWare running Windows 98, except Asterix & Obelix which doesn't work for some reason (and The Smurfs goes too fast in the intro/language screens, but then it gets fine). But I have two problems. First of all, I can't get my USB gamepad (which is a PlaySega gamepad) natively working. I can easily solve that with JoyToKey although moving the character can be somewhat laggy and I so would prefer having native support if possible. What it worries me the most is the MIDI, the major reason why I would like to play these. WMWare seems to default to a standard MIDI which is very poor sounding and what I want is using the Soundfont I use in Windows 10, but no matter what I tried, I can't find the way to do so.

So please, I would like some tips to either get all these games working on Windows 10, which seem to be pretty much impossible, or getting both my USB gamepad and especially being able to use my desired Soundfont for MIDI support, along with the fact of getting Asterix & Obelix to work which I don't why it doesn't work in my WMWare's Windows 98. It doesn't run at all, while in Windows 10 it does and the game and music/sound play (actually you can try to move through the intro/language logos, the title screen and start a game by the sounds) but you can't see absolutely anything.
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Re: Infogrames "All your cartoon favourites" games

Postby filipetolhuizen » 2017-2-11 @ 23:42

This is what you need for fixing wrong colours.
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Re: Infogrames "All your cartoon favourites" games

Postby Jorpho » 2017-2-12 @ 19:33

I thought the DirectDraw problem only applied to Windows Vista and Windows 7.
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Re: Infogrames "All your cartoon favourites" games

Postby AWesker » 2017-2-12 @ 20:47

filipetolhuizen wrote:This is what you need for fixing wrong colours.

Thank you, but it doesn't seem to work with these games. I also tried with the ones that display the screen in black or don't display it at all and it's no use.

Has anyone been able of running all these games under Windows 10? They seem to be very problematic.

Well, I went on with the Windows 98 WMWare workaround and did some progress.

I managed to:

-Finally get Soundfont MIDI properly working thanks to BASSMIDI synth, after several attempts with many other programs/drivers. I was also close to achieve it through sfz with savihost but unfortunately I couldn't get the Soundfont fully working with it (it didn't play drums).

-Also got Astérix & Obélix working. It was a silly install problem that made the game unable to run. For some reason, the problem had no effect in Windows 10 and it ran despite the fact that you can't see anything playing that way, so that was useless compared to making the game running on Windows 98 WMWare.

What I didn't manage to:

-I still didn't get native USB gamepad support working for my Dinput PlaySega gamepad. I can rely on the JoyToKey workaround but unfortunately it's a little laggy to play that way.

-There's a small issue with The Smurfs, the introductory/language/story screens play way too fast and it's difficult to select language and start game/password that way. The game behaves normal though. This doesn't happen with the other games, so I suspect this one doesn't adjust properly to CPU speed. Actually, Tintin in Tibet also has this issue but only for the language screen and it's not timed unlike the Smurfs one, so you can take your time to carefully select the language.

So if someone could please tell me how to get native USB gamepad support working on Windows 98 WMWare, then I think this would be all set. I don't think it's worth continuing to pursue making these games working on Windows 10.
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Re: Infogrames "All your cartoon favourites" games

Postby hdc0 » 2017-12-18 @ 12:30

I'm currently writing a patch to make SNES to Windows 95 ports developed by East Point Software run on current Windows versions. The All your cartoon favourites games were ported by EPS too. These games have several issues that need to be fixed in order to run them on Windows NT. One of the issues is that they use privileged instructions (more precisely: the cli and sti instructions). E.g. if you try to run SMURFSW.EXE, the error message An privileged instruction was executed at address 00408a31 should be shown and the process should terminate. However, you wrote
AWesker wrote:All of them seem to play and music/sounds effects come if you press buttons

Now I'm curious why your games do not crash. I can only think of three reasons:
  • You are running them in DxWnd with the option Replace privileged opcodes enabled,
  • you have a version of the game that does not use these instructions
  • or the version of Windows 10 you're using has a compatibility mode that handles privileged instructions.
So could you please tell me your Windows 10 version, the MD5 of your SMURFSW.EXE and whether you're using DxWnd?
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