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Author Topic: A Mala Tale...............well a project tale I guess !  (Read 373 times)

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mike boss

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A Mala Tale...............well a project tale I guess !
« on: April 19, 2018, 08:35:59 am »
MY man cave consits of 4 Nintendo cabinets.
A Mario Bros, Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr & Popeye.
(To be fair I have a Nintendo Punch-Out themed bartop in the works I'm yet to complete)
Of the 4, two are PC based and running MaLa as the frontend.
I honestly cant remember why I picked MaLa as my choice of frontend,
but I can tell you I'd never deviate from it. I love it !
The ability to prepare a custom layout, put together with custom load screen
and sound effects makes for a VERY polished frontend. I've recently
began tweaking my existing layouts, adding sound effects, or cleaning up the designs.
(I've gotten better with my layouts as time progressed, my skillset has grown since
I designed my initial layouts.)

With my Mario Bros cabinet I've added the iconic Mario Bros theme song.
A small change, but what a difference it makes in the overall presentation.
I then added some sound effects pulled directory from the game. Moving the joystick
to navigate the gameslist plays the "fire ball" sound effect. SO COOL!
Switching lits plays the "1 up" sound effect. Starting a game the "coin" sound effect.
All little things, but again they make for such a polished theme.

I find the wonderful community here @ BYOAC a huge asset! The support MaLa gets
is fantastic. If even I'm asked to help a friend with a build it's MaLa all the way.

I recently had a PC failure and my Mario Bros cabinet was left out of commission.
That cabinet was the crown jewel of my collection. Not only did it have MAME installed,
but it had NES, Sega Master System, Sega Genesis, and Turbo GRFX installed. Not only
that, but a pair of Aim Trak lightguns were purchased (but never installed) for this cabinet.
No doubt it was the most complete machine in my line up.

I tossed another PC into the cabinet and used the existing HDD, but that PC has issues
with overheating and shuts down. It was purchased from a buddy who said it had no issues.
And I do beleive that to be true, it's probably something that is just above my skill set.

Once I started to have issues with both PC's I remembered I had an old HP PC that I bought
when I bought my house. It was about 10 years old, and the hard drive had failed. But that asside
it was working and had no issues. I dug out a spare hard drive I had kicking around and so began the process
of setting up another PC. I remember this task being so daunting. But MaLa made it easy! The great support and
general wealth of information here on BYOAC were such an asset.

I've learned a few things. I have media (game media) all over the place. On multiple PC's and multiple external HDD's.
Now what I've done, try to consolidate the data.
I've also (and I'm so proud of this) changed the way I sort the media.
So now I'll have a folder for NES. In that folder will be the snaps, the videos, the ROM files (assorted sets), and the emulator.
So all I need to do is open the folder and all I need is available. I think this is simple, but genious! LOL

So with all that said, I've got my MaLa all set up and tweaked the way I like. My layout has been upgraded.
MAME, NES, Sega Genesis and Turbo GRFX all installed. Sega Master System is ready to be installed this week.
As is Sega Model 2.........I've never messed with Sega Model 2 before. But I'm hoping it's easy to set up and tweak!
(IE - close with escape, etc). I don't play on running the entire ROM set for Model 2, just want the gun games.
And with that said to conclude I'll finally install my paid of Aim Trak light guns. Then I'll  toss this PC into it's new
home inside my Mario Bros cabinet and cross my fingers for no more issues! (I should probably back up this set up!)






















drventure

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Re: A Mala Tale...............well a project tale I guess !
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2018, 09:23:12 am »
Sounds like a nice setup. I'm a big fan of mala too, written a few plugins, etc.

It's starting to show it's age a little but it's still a very easy setup, and works well on a large variety of hardware.

I wish it could be opensourced to take some of the load off loadman, but that can't happen for a variety of reasons.

I've been hoping to see a node based front end come along but unless I've missed it, there's no such critter as of yet.

I'm a little in your boat with the guns. I've got aimtraks, but I don't want to be wired. Tried the wiimote thing. It might be doable now, but back when I last tried it, the support for that just wasn't there.

mike boss

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Re: A Mala Tale...............well a project tale I guess !
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2018, 01:10:14 pm »
@ drventure


I'm certainly happy with the set up. It's a fun lil cabinet full of nostalgia. The NES, Sega Master System, Genesis and Turbo GRFX were all easy to set up and nice little bonus. I think the guns will give the project even more depth. Makes me want a stand up racer then I'd really be set ! LOL (it won't happen tho......no more space)

I think certain updates for Mala with  respect to artwork and animations could make for a great rival for Hyperspin.... but that aside I've seen some people create effects in MaLa I did not know were possible.

I think as "pretty" as Hyperspin may be...........it's a sh*t ton of fluff. I actually like the clean look you can achieve with MaLa.

drventure

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Re: A Mala Tale...............well a project tale I guess !
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2018, 02:11:37 pm »
Yeah, that's a big reason I've stuck with it.

I built a plugin called Engine18 at one point that exposed a ton of Mala internals so that it's easy to write plugins in a .net language.

Got sidetracked and never formally released it though.

My intent was always to beef it up and add some UI wizmos that Mala didn't have natively. Maybe one day!

mike boss

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Re: A Mala Tale...............well a project tale I guess !
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2018, 07:25:26 am »
I had an opportunity on Saturday (no wife/no kids) to work again on my newest MaLa/MAME set up.
FINALLY after 7,8, maybe even longer I installed my Aim Trak guns. WOW! What a blast it was to play Duck Hunt. OMG...so frikin' cool!
Today (if I get time) I'll install The House Of The Dead 1,2, & 3. I'd also like to figure out Sega Model 2.
More work is in store, but this will be my best set up yet. Working on getting the MAME CHD files, then I'll compile separate MaLa GamesLists for all Light Gun games.

  
 

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