New 3D graphics engine (28/8/98)
Phantom is a new 3D graphics engine currently being developed by Divine Nature, the demos coding group. The engine currently runs at between 30 and 90fps on a StrongARM machine, at either 320x256 or 640x256 resolution.
Divine Nature aim to make Phantom into a fully functional 3D engine with provision for both demos and games, so it could be interesting to see what they produce in the future.
A demo of the engine (which is limited to 25fps) is available to download from their website, at http://www.page-designer.com/dn/.
Project Sunflower (21/8/98)
A team of programmers are currently working on a project aimed to revive the freeware side of the Acorn games scene. 'Project Sunflower' consists of two main stages:
- Create a module to manage aspects common to all games
- Develop a games DDE (Desktop Development Environment)
New SNES Emulator (14/8/98)
With the advent of Gareth Long's port of SNES9X, the SNES Emulator, some of the classic games of the nineties can be played on your RiscPC. Amazingly, 16-bit titles such as Super Mario World, Zelda and Super Off Road are capable of running at near-full speed on a StrongARM, even with preliminary sound support. And there's likely to be a lot of progress; this last test version isn't fully optimised as some debugging code has been left in.
Unfortunately, some games simply don't run quickly enough to be playable and some (like Mario Kart and Pilot Wings) don't run at all. Gareth hopes to have these bugs ironed out and the testing code removed for the first full release 'real soon now', but in the meantime you can download the latest test version of SNES9X from Gareth's website.