VOGONS


First post, by MrFlibble

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I took and interest in fan-made AGI games and ways for running them in DOSBox without proprietary Sierra interpreter binaries. Out of the possible options, Sarien seemed most suitable, and indeed it works in DOSBox (I figured out how to add fan games to the sarien.ini config file), but I'm getting no sound at all, even though the menu says that sound is on. I've also tried the -E switch which supposedly selects sound emulation type.

There is no sound with either fan games (I tested Sarien most prominently with VooDoo Girl) or with official Sierra titles (I tried The Black Cauldron). In both cases, sound/music play if I run the original Sierra DOS interpreter binaries. Changing CPU cycles or CPU core does not help. I also tried legacy SB drivers and JEMMEX.

Tested this with 0.74-3 and an SVN build from January 2021. The debugger does not show any sound initialization, maybe it is not even implemented?

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Reply 1 of 15, by digger

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Wasn't Sarien absorbed into the ScummVM project a long time ago? I distinctly remember FreeSCI being the sole holdout as the remaining major standalone adventure game engine reimplementation, until that too merged with ScummVM, long after Sarien had done so.

So the Sarien code that you're playing with is probably quite outdated. Why not use ScummVM for playing AGI games?

Reply 2 of 15, by darry

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Sometimes, when you are looking for a Sarien encounter, nothing else will do . 😉

More seriously, that code base was classified "Status: Alpha" when it was merged into ScummVM something like 15 years ago (and has likely since greatly improved since then), so I so I doubt you will find many people still using it (I could be wrong). That said, if you are dead set on running under DOS/DOSBox, I understand that ScummVM will not be an option .

Reply 3 of 15, by MrFlibble

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digger wrote on 2021-06-02, 18:06:

So the Sarien code that you're playing with is probably quite outdated. Why not use ScummVM for playing AGI games?

To be honest, I expected this kind of replies with some probability, but it seemed to be impolite to try to prevent them in advance. I appreciate your trying to help but this is not the kind of solution I'm looking for.

I am well aware that Sarien code was merged into ScummVM, and that ScummVM is now the to-go option if one wants to play AGI games. But as I mentioned above, I am currently trying to run the DOS binary of Sarien 0.7.0 in DOSBox and expect it to work with sound, which it does not. So the question I am asking is, how do I run Sarien 0.7.0 with sound in DOSBox, if it is possible at all? and not, how do I run AGI games in general?

I quite enjoy digging the history of various programmes and tinkering with old versions -- if DOS binaries are available, I check them out. I am also aware that an even earlier version of Sarien was available as DOS binaries, 0.5.2, built with a different compiler. So far, I was unable to find a working download -- stuff like this vanished from the Internet insanely fast. Maybe I should just try building 0.7.0 with DJGPP.

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Reply 4 of 15, by digger

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Have you looked at NAGI? That's an other open-source AGI engine reimplementation. https://github.com/sonneveld/nagi

It runs on Linux and Windows, but you might be able to get the Windows version to run in DOS on top of the HX DOS extender.

Reply 5 of 15, by Jo22

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digger wrote on 2021-06-02, 18:06:

Wasn't Sarien absorbed into the ScummVM project a long time ago? I distinctly remember FreeSCI being the sole holdout as the remaining major standalone adventure game engine reimplementation, until that too merged with ScummVM, long after Sarien had done so.

So the Sarien code that you're playing with is probably quite outdated. Why not use ScummVM for playing AGI games?

I wonder the same. I used to play AGI games in Sarien in the early 2000s.
On a Pocket PC with Pocket PC 2000 (based on Win CE 3.0), I think.

That being said, I loved Sarien for its simplicity.
ScummVM seemed very bloated by comparison and couldn't play AGI titles at the time.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 6 of 15, by darry

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Jo22 wrote on 2021-06-04, 03:23:
I wonder the same. I used to play AGI games in Sarien in the early 2000s. On a Pocket PC with Pocket PC 2000 (based on Win CE 3. […]
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digger wrote on 2021-06-02, 18:06:

Wasn't Sarien absorbed into the ScummVM project a long time ago? I distinctly remember FreeSCI being the sole holdout as the remaining major standalone adventure game engine reimplementation, until that too merged with ScummVM, long after Sarien had done so.

So the Sarien code that you're playing with is probably quite outdated. Why not use ScummVM for playing AGI games?

I wonder the same. I used to play AGI games in Sarien in the early 2000s.
On a Pocket PC with Pocket PC 2000 (based on Win CE 3.0), I think.

That being said, I loved Sarien for its simplicity.
ScummVM seemed very bloated by comparison and couldn't play AGI titles at the time.

Maybe I am doing it wrong, but one thing that I do not like about ScummVM is that audio device selection seems extremely confusing . I have nothing but respect for all the work that was put into ScummVM, but I hate how complicated it seems to be to, for example, just route MT-32 MIDI DATA to a an actual MT-32 device . Maybe I just don't get it, but I would have preferred to be shown what the game originally supported, and be given options to either route music data as is to a an actual device or softsynth or apply remapping to it, if desired. For every supported game, there could also be presets that try to simulate the options that were originally offered in the game's setup . Anyway, I don't like it (I may the only one on the planet), so I stick to using DOSBox or original hardware .

Reply 7 of 15, by ripsaw8080

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MrFlibble wrote on 2021-06-03, 12:59:

Maybe I should just try building 0.7.0 with DJGPP.

I think this may be your only choice for working sound in DOS, unless you can find an existing binary.

The DOS binary on SourceForge was compiled with Turbo C. According to README.ports in the 0.7.0 source files, MS-DOS builds compiled with Watcom and Turbo C use the "dummy" sound driver, presumably meaning no sound, and MS-DOS builds compiled with DJGPP use the Allegro sound library.

Reply 8 of 15, by BloodyCactus

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you know.. I am the Sarien author, I started Sarien and wrote most of the code ... I developed it on Linux so I dont know what libraries the DOS port uses. and I know it wasnt Claudio who did the dos port so shrug.

--/\-[ Stu : Bloody Cactus :: http://kråketær.com :: http://mega-tokyo.com ]-/\--

Reply 9 of 15, by Jo22

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I didn't know that, either. I guess it's time for a big "Thank you" then! ^^

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 10 of 15, by MrFlibble

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ripsaw8080 wrote on 2021-06-04, 08:31:

The DOS binary on SourceForge was compiled with Turbo C. According to README.ports in the 0.7.0 source files, MS-DOS builds compiled with Watcom and Turbo C use the "dummy" sound driver, presumably meaning no sound, and MS-DOS builds compiled with DJGPP use the Allegro sound library.

As usual, thanks a lot for clarifying things!!! I guess I should have read the docs that come with the source more carefully.

BloodyCactus wrote on 2021-06-04, 12:08:

you know.. I am the Sarien author, I started Sarien and wrote most of the code ... I developed it on Linux so I dont know what libraries the DOS port uses. and I know it wasnt Claudio who did the dos port so shrug.

I kind of guessed that DOS wasn't the default target platform from the archived project page snapshots:
http://agi.helllabs.org/
http://www.mega-tokyo.com/sarien/index.php3?menu=downloads

Pity that the earlier builds were stored at an FTP site, which was not mirrored by the Wayback Machine.

Hopefully not to steer this discussion off-topic, but I found, also via the Wayback Machine, a Windows build with the version 0.8.0 here: sarien-windows.zip. This seems to be an updated fork because the latest version at SourceForge is 0.7.0.

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Reply 11 of 15, by BloodyCactus

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I put the last dos version I have on my site;

https://bloodycactus.com/files.html

its 0.5.2 DJGPP DOS version

--/\-[ Stu : Bloody Cactus :: http://kråketær.com :: http://mega-tokyo.com ]-/\--

Reply 12 of 15, by MrFlibble

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BloodyCactus wrote on 2021-06-05, 21:37:

I put the last dos version I have on my site;

https://bloodycactus.com/files.html

its 0.5.2 DJGPP DOS version

Thank you very much Sir!

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Reply 13 of 15, by MrFlibble

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In the meantime I was able to compile 0.7.0 with DJGPP in DOSBox, but it also uses the "dummy" sound driver for some reason -- I thought that Allegro supports sound and music playback out of the box?

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Reply 14 of 15, by ripsaw8080

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Did you install the Allegro library in your DJGPP build environment? https://www.allegro.cc/docs/dos-djgpp-compile.html

In any case, README.ports lists the DJGPP port in the "in progress" section, which could mean it was not functional at the time.

Reply 15 of 15, by BloodyCactus

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looking over the source tree I dont see an explicit allegro sound driver (or dos driver), so I dont know if there is anything else beyond 'dummy' sound for dos.

--/\-[ Stu : Bloody Cactus :: http://kråketær.com :: http://mega-tokyo.com ]-/\--