Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Discussion of hardware and software development for Super NES and Super Famicom.

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Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Yes if selling, no if not selling
11
44%
Yes for both selling and not selling
2
8%
Depends
6
24%
No
3
12%
I don't know
1
4%
I don't care
2
8%
 
Total votes: 25

Nokia3310
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Nokia3310 » Thu Nov 05, 2020 8:17 am

I'm not a developer but I can compare the struggle to making music (standards, expectations, making things for yourself or to work for an audience etc). I like checking out people's work though. I've been looking for SNES homebrew stuff and not found very much. I don't know if projects getting shut down by Nintendo plays any part in that. If anyone has anything they would like me to try out, I've got a basic Everdrive and I'll give things a whirl. Feel free to PM stuff to me. Also, if you have any other stuff that you think is worth checking out, please send it me or let me know where to find it. The SNES was my first console and I still love it.

In terms of advice for developers, I'd say do what makes you happy and have fun learning and experimenting. If you want to put stuff out for the general public to play/use then there will always be people that will make criticisms and sometimes they won't be fair. You have to ignore all that because most people don't know or understand what goes into making things work.

Making a game comparable to a licensed release is a different, massively ambitious project and needs serious dedication or collaboration between members of the community. The best games are usually made by a team of people so the goals need to be realistic.

I wish everyone here the best of luck with their projects and look forward to seeing what people are making 👊
Last edited by Nokia3310 on Thu Nov 05, 2020 10:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Nikku4211
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Nikku4211 » Thu Nov 05, 2020 8:43 am

Nintendo hasn't C&Ded any original homebrew project that does not use copyrighted assets, copyrighted characters or copyrighted code recently.

Sega v. Accolade ensures that original unlicenced games are legal.
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Bregalad
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Bregalad » Thu Nov 05, 2020 2:36 pm

Wow, 4 pages in just one day :shock:

Now to answer the OP; I cann't speak for others but personally I have always been disapointed by the low quantity of debugging possibilities on SNES emulators. All that existed for a longwhile was an unofficial build of Snes9x, snes9xd, which includes useful debugging features. Even then, thery're more complex to use than FCEUX for the NES which is how every console emulator should make their debuging features.

So I was able to do some tests on SNES based on the "walker" demo from the "SNESStarterKit" and do a few tests. But I couldn't go very far until my ignorance of 65816-specific instruction and my lack of ability to debug would hinder any possibility of making a real project on the platform.

And the main thing, as tokumaru said, is that if people excpect a SNES homebrew, they expect it to look at least like the early SNES games. If it looks very retro, without using advanced features such as musical samples, multiple layers of graphics and so on, people will say "why didn't you use an earlier platform for this homebrew".

Another last version why SNES is unpopular is how complicated it is to program for the SPC700 sound, bascially you need a full sound engine working and you can't "cheat" and create a few beeps just by writing to some hardware registers.
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tepples
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by tepples » Thu Nov 05, 2020 3:25 pm

Bregalad wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 2:36 pm
If [a Super NES homebrew game] looks very retro, without using advanced features such as musical samples, multiple layers of graphics and so on, people will say "why didn't you use an earlier platform for this homebrew".
I didn't get that impression from the Game Boy Advance homebrew scene. But then I'll grant that there was a difference: it was hard to find flash carts for the 8-bit Game Boy for sale once GBA flash carts were common. This doesn't apply so much to NES and Super NES, on the other hand, as there was NES PowerPak before SNES PowerPak, and there were ReproPak and INL-ROM before INL Hi/LoROM.

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Nikku4211
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Nikku4211 » Thu Nov 05, 2020 4:00 pm

Bregalad wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 2:36 pm
Another last version why SNES is unpopular is how complicated it is to program for the SPC700 sound, bascially[sic] you need a full sound engine working and you can't "cheat" and create a few beeps just by writing to some hardware registers.
If you prefer to use your own sound engines, I guess it'd be a problem.

I mean, there's SNESMOD and SNESGSS, both of which are tracker-based SNES sound engines.
The latter has its own tracker, the former lets you use trackers like OpenMPT to make .IT files to convert for use with SNESMOD's driver, though I do have no idea how to insert it into a SNES project.

You can create a few beeps using extremely tiny looping samples, though.
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tokumaru
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by tokumaru » Thu Nov 05, 2020 7:01 pm

tepples wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 3:25 pm
I didn't get that impression from the Game Boy Advance homebrew scene.
The GBA still used the "Game Boy" brand and was compatible with earlier 8-bit games, so simpler games weren't foreign to that platform. Also, GBA homebrewing started when the hardware was still popular and owned by many people, so it was a convenient perform to use even if the software being made wasn't making full use of the hardware.

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Nikku4211
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Nikku4211 » Thu Nov 05, 2020 8:30 pm

I forgot to make it a poll, so here it is up at the top.
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Pokun
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Pokun » Fri Nov 06, 2020 3:03 am

Nikku4211 wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 4:00 pm
Bregalad wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 2:36 pm
Another last version why SNES is unpopular is how complicated it is to program for the SPC700 sound, bascially[sic] you need a full sound engine working and you can't "cheat" and create a few beeps just by writing to some hardware registers.
If you prefer to use your own sound engines, I guess it'd be a problem.

I mean, there's SNESMOD and SNESGSS, both of which are tracker-based SNES sound engines.
The latter has its own tracker, the former lets you use trackers like OpenMPT to make .IT files to convert for use with SNESMOD's driver, though I do have no idea how to insert it into a SNES project.

You can create a few beeps using extremely tiny looping samples, though.
Still, you need to get the stuff into the Audio-RAM. Compared to PSG sound chips where it's enough to just write to a few registers to get a square tone, and on the NES you can even play with hardware envelops to vary it easily.

Writing your own sound engine isn't easy on a PSG either (sound engines are usually very simple in early NES games), but the unique S-APU is probably scaring people. And finding a tutorial for audio (that isn't just showing how to use SNESGSS or other pre-made sound engine) is probably much harder than finding one for video.

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Bregalad
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Bregalad » Fri Nov 06, 2020 3:37 am

tepples wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 3:25 pm
I didn't get that impression from the Game Boy Advance homebrew scene.
To be honneest, I feel like a big proportion of what was made back when the GBA was still a console on the shelves was of awful quality. Lots of kids just pasting badly resized images on the screen, etc... Now that the console has gotten retro, the community is tiny but makes better quality stuff.
Nikku4211 wrote:
Thu Nov 05, 2020 4:00 pm
I mean, there's SNESMOD and SNESGSS, both of which are tracker-based SNES sound engines.
The latter has its own tracker, the former lets you use trackers like OpenMPT to make .IT files to convert for use with SNESMOD's driver, though I do have no idea how to insert it into a SNES project.
Those were recently released, what I was saying is explaining why SNES developement was unpopular for a long time, not why it's unpopular right now. Also, if you need to merge music and sound effects, I'm not sure those sound engines are sufficient (I should check this).
Writing your own sound engine isn't easy on a PSG either (sound engines are usually very simple in early NES games), but the unique S-APU is probably scaring people. And finding a tutorial for audio (that isn't just showing how to use SNESGSS or other pre-made sound engine) is probably much harder than finding one for video.
On the other hand, very nice visualisation of what is going on in sound engines has been available since very long, with SPCTool and SuperJukebox. Other platforms with maybe less complex sound hardware are totally lacking such tools.
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nin-kuuku
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by nin-kuuku » Fri Nov 06, 2020 7:00 am

Assuming the question is more like "Should homebrewers feel obligated to make Nintendo quality games." No. There would be no homebrewing if they did. Anyway, you can also use the Super Gameboy for SNES coding. It has OK musicdriver build in (with annoying bug related to gate setting). And 128k RAM + 64k VRAM is enough memory to make good games. Also SGB+GB flashcarts are cheaper than SNES flashcarts. I'm planning to put out some SGB loader blob and macros for the music that you can use with assembler of your choice.
Attachments
SGBmusic_super_jupiter_scope_1.GB
Example that uses the build in player with custom bass and snare
(64 KiB) Downloaded 116 times

tepples
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by tepples » Fri Nov 06, 2020 8:22 am

nin-kuuku wrote:
Fri Nov 06, 2020 7:00 am
Anyway, you can also use the Super Gameboy for SNES coding. It has OK musicdriver build in (with annoying bug related to gate setting). And 128k RAM + 64k VRAM is enough memory to make good games. Also SGB+GB flashcarts are cheaper than SNES flashcarts. I'm planning to put out some SGB loader blob
You've piqued my interest. Let's discuss SGB native mode.

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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by psycopathicteen » Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:36 am

I hate when I've spent a lot of time struggling to get code to work and then I found out I could've done it in a much simpler way. I'm facepalming at the fact that I should've used an HDMA spc700 loading scheme for my SNES music program. I could've did it where $2140-$2141 was the address to write a byte to, $2142 was the byte to write, and $2143 was the scanline counter.

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Bregalad
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Bregalad » Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:40 am

psycopathicteen wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:36 am
I hate when I've spent a lot of time struggling to get code to work and then I found out I could've done it in a much simpler way. I'm facepalming at the fact that I should've used an HDMA spc700 loading scheme for my SNES music program. I could've did it where $2140-$2141 was the address to write a byte to, $2142 was the byte to write, and $2143 was the scanline counter.
No offense but before doing overcomplicated things that push the system to its limit, you should fist make something as good as existing games on the platofm...
Useless, lumbering half-wits don't scare us.

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Nikku4211
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by Nikku4211 » Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:54 am

Bregalad wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:40 am
No offense but before doing overcomplicated things that push the system to its limit, you should fist make something as good as existing games on the platofm...
yeah bro wheres my chrono trigger-type magnum opus boi?

wheres my super mario world 3??
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psycopathicteen
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Re: Are High SNES Homebrew Expectations Justified?

Post by psycopathicteen » Sat Nov 07, 2020 12:58 pm

Bregalad wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:40 am
psycopathicteen wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:36 am
I hate when I've spent a lot of time struggling to get code to work and then I found out I could've done it in a much simpler way. I'm facepalming at the fact that I should've used an HDMA spc700 loading scheme for my SNES music program. I could've did it where $2140-$2141 was the address to write a byte to, $2142 was the byte to write, and $2143 was the scanline counter.
No offense but before doing overcomplicated things that push the system to its limit, you should fist make something as good as existing games on the platofm...
Music-wise it's pretty hard getting something as good as existing games. I think an HDMA engine would actually make it easier on me just because I find the 65816 much easier to work with.

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