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Where to put Vectrex roms in MAME? And can overlays work in MAME?


retrorussell

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Hey folks!

I wanted to make a video on the Vectrex, and run it through MAME (I have version .235).  I cannot seem to figure out where the emulator wants the roms placed.  I have only Mine Storm but I have it placed in several locations: in the "roms" folder of MAME-- both in the zip file and extracted as the .vec file-- and also in the "vectrex" file created in the Snap folder.  When I run MAME the option for Vectrex appears via a search.  I select it and see the list of games.  Mine Storm is not going to play ("required roms/disk images missing or incorrect").  I can at least play it through the "start empty" option, but that still sucks.  Also, is there a way to load overlay images?  Would they simply go in the "artwork" MAME folder?

Thanks for the help-- I'm just now getting into the Vectrex as I didn't really play it BITD.

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Once Vectrex in Mame starts you can load a game by pressing tab, selecting file manager, and then navigating to and selecting the game rom file.  The game rom files can be stored anywhere.

 

My favourite Vectrex emulator is ParaJVE.  It comes with the game rom and overlay files all in one package ready to go.

Edited by mr_me
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5 hours ago, mr_me said:

Once Vectrex in Mame starts you can load a game by pressing tab, selecting file manager, and then navigating to and selecting the game rom file.  The game rom files can be stored anywhere.

 

My favourite Vectrex emulator is ParaJVE.  It comes with the game rom and overlay files all in one package ready to go.

I'm trying ParaJVE; I had to load Java to get it to work.  But it will only play Clean Sweep.  I don't know how to get it to find another game.  Also, the overlay is not set correctly; are there ways to get it to "fit" better on the screen?  

 

As for MAME, I get an "invalid image" error message when I try to load the romfile through the means suggested.  Is .vec the proper extension for the file?  Did I get a bad one?  I have it in my Mame roms folder.

 

If this doesn't work I may have a look at RetroArch.

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Starting to figure out ParaJVE a bit-- figured out how to select the other roms (gotta do it before you start the emulator, it seems).  Clean Sweep seems to be the only one with an overlay-- was there a folder to put other overlays (assuming I can find them somewhere on the net)?

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With Mame I use the same game rom files that came with ParaJVE, they have .bin extensions.  ParaJVE comes with thirty official game rom files plus some homevrews.  The overlays seem to all be packed in one file.  I'm using the windows version and I just select among the different games from the pull down menu.  Overlays work without issue.  There are instructions "how to add overlays.txt" in the data/packs folder.

Edited by mr_me
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10 hours ago, mr_me said:

With Mame I use the same game rom files that came with ParaJVE, they have .bin extensions.  ParaJVE comes with thirty official game rom files plus some homevrews.  The overlays seem to all be packed in one file.  I'm using the windows version and I just select among the different games from the pull down menu.  Overlays work without issue.  There are instructions "how to add overlays.txt" in the data/packs folder.

Yeah, I'll have to dink around in the overlays text file to figure out what to do.  Because now NONE of the overlays are showing, whereas Clean Sweep and Armor Attack and a few others were working before.  Weird.

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None of those things worked.. and then I found someone else on a forum saying the same thing, until they used the pull-down menu instead of "Run Game" or "Pick Another ROM".  I did that, and only when you go through the pull-down menu to play a game will the overlays show.  Well, at least it works now.  Thanks for the advice!

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On 11/3/2021 at 6:55 AM, mr_me said:

My favourite Vectrex emulator is ParaJVE.  It comes with the game rom and overlay files all in one package ready to go.

I find it odd that 3D games aren't listed on the game select menu.  I loaded the 3D game roms but they don't work.  Will PARAJVE not read .vec files?  Only .bin files?  At any rate, the main screen for the 3D game will show but when it disappears no game will run.  The games are 3D Crazy Coaster, 3D Mine Storm, and 3D Narrow Escape.  If you can, let me know if you can play 3D Vectrex games on ParaJVE.  Thanks!

 

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The .vec and .bin files are identical, the only difference is the name of the files and the emulators don't care how they're named.  I've tried 3D Crazy Coaster in three different emulators Mame, Parajve, and Vecxgl; all produced the same result, a blank screen after the title screen.

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2 hours ago, mr_me said:

The .vec and .bin files are identical, the only difference is the name of the files and the emulators don't care how they're named.  I've tried 3D Crazy Coaster in three different emulators Mame, Parajve, and Vecxgl; all produced the same result, a blank screen after the title screen.

Okay, thanks!  I'll just do a video review of the system without the 3d games and explain in the video why.  Cheers!

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16 hours ago, mr_me said:

The .vec and .bin files are identical, the only difference is the name of the files and the emulators don't care how they're named.  I've tried 3D Crazy Coaster in three different emulators Mame, Parajve, and Vecxgl; all produced the same result, a blank screen after the title screen.

Have you had any success with the light pen in Parajve?  I have it set up for light pen in game port 2 as I'm supposed to.  I can see the game images at the top and bottom (what they indicate I'm not sure), but no white dot at the center.  I can't draw by holding the mouse button(s) down, though I can see the crosshairs like I'm supposed to.  If I don't have it set up for light pen (with mouse) the little white dot is at the center but no icons/indicators at top or bottom, and I have no crosshairs and can't draw (a little white line will flash across the screen on its own every couple seconds).  Any ideas?

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  • 2 years later...
Posted (edited)
On 11/4/2021 at 6:44 PM, retrorussell said:

I find it odd that 3D games aren't listed on the game select menu.  I loaded the 3D game roms but they don't work.  Will PARAJVE not read .vec files?  Only .bin files?  At any rate, the main screen for the 3D game will show but when it disappears no game will run.  The games are 3D Crazy Coaster, 3D Mine Storm, and 3D Narrow Escape.  If you can, let me know if you can play 3D Vectrex games on ParaJVE.  Thanks!

 

Just came across this thread on a random google looking for something else. You may have figured this out, and maybe emulators can support it now, I'm not sure, but I wanted to add a comment for anyone coming across this in the future as well.

 

What is described is the same behavior if you run a 3D Cart without the 3D imager connected, or without the wheel in it etc. The game doesn't boot until the 3D Imager is fully spinning and in sync with the signal, and I believe the light being cut out on the black half is important to a sensor, or some marking on the wheel etc. In any case, just putting the wheel in backwards can prevent the game from booting I've found.

 

So an emulator would have to emulate this sync signal, and to be playable on a 2D screen, would have to also only show what is drawn when one eye is revealed. Keep in mind the wheels don't just add 3D, they add color as well by timing the drawing with the color on the wheels, so getting it right in emulation may be tricky, but I also wouldn't be surprised if it has been done now.

Edited by Hastor
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6 hours ago, Hastor said:

Just came across this thread on a random google looking for something else. You may have figured this out, and maybe emulators can support it now, I'm not sure, but I wanted to add a comment for anyone coming across this in the future as well.

 

What is described is the same behavior if you run a 3D Cart without the 3D imager connected, or without the wheel in it etc. The game doesn't boot until the 3D Imager is fully spinning and in sync with the signal, and I believe the light being cut out on the black half is important to a sensor, or some marking on the wheel etc. In any case, just putting the wheel in backwards can prevent the game from booting I've found.

 

So an emulator would have to emulate this sync signal, and to be playable on a 2D screen, would have to also only show what is drawn when one eye is revealed. Keep in mind the wheels don't just add 3D, they add color as well by timing the drawing with the color on the wheels, so getting it right in emulation may be tricky, but I also wouldn't be surprised if it has been done now.

Thanks for your response.  I have kind of moved on to other things but sometime I should try it again.  I have interest in doing a Vectrex review someday, so I'll pick it up again in the future and hopefully it will be better emulated by then.  Thank you!

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