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Interview with Anders (of NeoRage Team) (10/3/98)

I can die now.

At Anders request, I have touched up spelling and grammer where needed.

<DragonYen> Anders, I would like to thank you for your time today... Most of the questions I will be asking are questions gathered from people in the #NeoGeo Chan. on EFNet... answer all questions in much (or as little detail) as you want. First Question : What are your future plans for RAGE?
<Anders> It is hard to say, I hope we will get the time so we can improve RAGE, make the sounds perfect, improve joystick support and high-color
<DragonYen> What are your thoughts on Gekko?
<Anders> It is all up to him to sell it, and think it will be great, unfortunately it will only support 8 games in the first release.
<DragonYen> Do you think Gekko will affect the emulation (specifically NeoGeo) scene? If so, how?
<Anders> No, not at all, I think the free emus are as good as Gekko, and I think there will be full sound in some of the free emus when Gekko is released and with support for a lot more games
<DragonYen> If SNK approached you to make some sort of commercial CD collection. What would you do?
<Anders> No it is to late for that ;) but if another company will have our services, maybe ;)
<DragonYen> Do you think you will ever charge a registration fee for NeoRage?
<Anders> NEVER it is a freeware and will always be
<DragonYen> How many e-mails (on average) do you get in a day? And what are they mostly about?
<Anders> Before bigfoot was helping us, beetween 50 & 100 a day, but lately a lot less about NeoRAGE, the most common question is unable to load system files or ng_fix, Sidewinder problem with some soundcards... and of course when will there be sound support and
<DragonYen> Heh.. Sound support.. I will be asking about that later ;> How long does it take you to read all that mail?
<Anders> It depends on how many I respond to, but about   half an hour a day. I want to appoligize for all the mails I don't respond to, I want to respond all of them, but it would take to much time, and I had a hard drive crash a couple of days ago so I lost a lot of mails and my address book.
<DragonYen> How much time do you spend (approx) per week on NeoRage?
<Anders> Before the hack on NeoRAGE VERY much time, but now have we been a lot less frequent in our works on it.
<DragonYen> Everyone knows about the NeoRage hack, first off could you tell everyone what was "hacked" about it?
<Anders> The hack itself didn't piss us of so much because there is always someone that wants to show how briliant they are (not). But we were very dissapointed when we found out that there was some guys that we have very good contact with and they used it even if we told them not to, but it is all behind us now
<DragonYen> That's good... though most people don't know what the hack was... Am I right in saying that they removed the CRC-Checks?
<Anders> Yes
<DragonYen> Is this why you released NeoBeta?
<Anders> Now the purpose for the crc is gone, when the most games already are released, so we decided to take it away.
<DragonYen> So the CRC Check will probably return (or not) in later versions of NeoRage?
<Anders> It will not return, we had a couple of resons to have the crc checks before but it is not needed anymore.
<DragonYen> Can you tell us what the CRC-Check was used for?
<Anders> The first reson was, we were getting so many mails about games that were not working perfect, so we wanted to try the games and write down known bugs and hopefully recived a bit less e-mails, and second we didn't want anyone to be able to make deals with private collections of roms. We wanted all the roms out. Equal to all
<DragonYen> How has your agenda changed since the hack? (if at all)
<Anders> Only the motivation, it is hard to get back
<DragonYen> Do you know who did it?
<Anders> Yes at least one of them, the first one I heard of
<DragonYen> Do you believe that the "hack" screen in Metal Slug 2 has taught the hacker (and would be hackers) a lesson?
<Anders> no
<DragonYen> So it was basically just to prove a point then...
<Anders> We just want people to know that we don't like it
<DragonYen> Overall, are you pleased by the direction of the NeoGeo (emulation) community?
<Anders> No, not over all but of course there are A LOT of nice people but I don't think the spirit is the same as before. More people are in the emulation scene now. They are only intereseted in the games and not the emulation itself, I know when I was doing my first game it was really fun I would get good responses and no complaints when I released my first emu and it had wrong colors and no joystick support and no sound, If you did that today, you would received a lot of complaints.
<DragonYen> I understand.. that unfortunatly seems to come when stuff gets popular, This is what is about... emualtion, behind the scenes, not the games ;> A lot of people believe that RomList and NeoCharity are competing for releases, do you agree? (and do you think it is good or bad for the community)
<Anders>  If  Romlist and NeoCharity are competing, that is childish. Romlist has been dumping the majority of the games and is the biggest NeoGeo dumpers out there, they have nothing to prove, I think it is bad for them to compete.
<DragonYen> So does NeoRage team work more closely with RomList than NeoCharity?
<Anders> Yes, we are from the same country and we speak with them on the phone and not only about NeoGeo, but when I think Chemical's idea about NeoCharity is a great idea, however we dont have any help from either of them. We are trying out dumps before they are releasing them, so they know that they are working, and people don't have to download them twice.
<DragonYen> So as far as the development goes.. they are just the game providers, and you have beta testers or something for NeoRage?
<Anders> No, we don't have beta-testers, but of course we are sending it to some friends sometimes... but not really for beta testing more because they want it, PCArcade of course our oldest friends in the scene.
<DragonYen> I am going to list some feature changes/additions people would like to see... tell me anything you care to share on that subject. Again, remember these are from actual NeoRage users. : Removing the "pause screen" (and allowing screen shots in pause mode)... to help in sprite ripping.
<Anders> Yes it is a good idea
<DragonYen> Layer disabling... to help in sprite ripping.
<Anders> The NeoGeo doesn't work that way... it has no layers, but we can toggle beetween objects so people can chose sprites to save
<DragonYen> Multiple save-states (more than one save slot per game).
<Anders> Maybe but I think save-states are destroying the games anyway. Thats why we dont have it in RAGE. But too many people was requesting it, so we had to give up.
<DragonYen> I agree.. it makes the GAMES TOO easy.. i wouldn't mind seeing them go :) GUI, some sort of "in program" game selection?
<Anders> Yes it is also a very requested feature
<DragonYen> is it being worked on? or just thought about for future releases?
<Anders> for future release
<DragonYen> Multiplayer IPX and/or TCP/IP...
<Anders> Very good idea but it is hard in dos, it is so much easier in DirectX
<DragonYen> Which brings me to another good question : Windows (DirectX or other) version of NeoRage?
<Anders> I hate windows
<DragonYen> hehe.. I would take that as NO :) Multiple NeoRage configurations... So different games can have different default configs.
<Anders> What do you mean keysettings and joystick?
<DragonYen> Yes..
<Anders> It would make a big ini file if all games would be included. [Basically this will not be added]
<DragonYen> Though Sound isn't even added yet.. people are already asking if you will be able to turn off the MUSIC, and just listen to Sound FX.
<Anders> Yes
<DragonYen> How is the NeoCD portion of NeoRage coming?
<Anders> I have no original cd so i can't do it, but rips is going well
<DragonYen> Is it planned to support Original NeoCD CD's, Copies NeoCD's, and CD-Rips?
<Anders> Yes
<DragonYen> If someone wants to send you an original CD, how can they get ahold of you?
<Anders> send me a mail and ask for my address :   but i will only need one maybe two
<DragonYen> Ok, I will let them know to act fast :) - How do you feel about the controversy between ROMS and WAREZ?
<Anders> I think the roms from 98 is warez and maybe 97 as well.
<DragonYen> So you think it is NOT ok to release Brand New NeoGeo games (for free), just because we are able to dump them?
[ISP Dropped me here.. and I reconnect]
<Anders> I dont think KOF98 is ok
<DragonYen> ok.. thats basically what i was driving at. Are you worried that SNK will try to put a stop to your emulation project?
<Anders> No not at all
<DragonYen> As far as legality goes.. EMULATION isn't illegal, it's downloading roms you don't own (correct?)
<Anders> Yes
<DragonYen> Ok... Now for the part you probably dred.. I am gonna ask about Sound.. :) - Rumor has it the ym2610 is 100% they are just having problems implementing it in the f3 tatio games... and the information has been given to other emu authors.. are you one of the authors that has recieved the YM2610 info?
<Anders> Yes, we have seen a 2610 emu depending on MAME source
<DragonYen> So will that help NeoRage get sound quicker... or is it completely different from what you need to implement it?
<Anders> It is completely different but of course, we can get help out of it, we can see how the fm part is working ... I dont know how much I can say here we have deceided to not say too much about it but it is in a Stage ;)
<DragonYen> I wondered when we would get to the "I can't say anything phase" :) Do you have enough knowledge to finish the sound support?
<Anders> Yes, we have. With the source we got
<DragonYen> Will Sound in NeoRage be held off until it is 100%, or will it be released in stages?
<Anders> We will not release any more stages I think, only one more.
<DragonYen> Only one more NeoRage release ever (unless you find bugs)?
<Anders> Exactly, unless we find bugs
<DragonYen> Is it harder to implement the FX or MUSIC... or is it all the same?
<Anders> The music is harder for us
<DragonYen> Will the MUSIC tracks on the CD's be even harder? or is that pretty simple?
<Anders> We haventt looked at that yet but I dont think it will be harder at all.
<DragonYen> Will you ever be releasing the source code to NeoRage (or Rage)?
<Anders> No i dont see the point of it when MAME has it
<DragonYen> How do you feel about the arrival of a new working NeoGeo emulator (NeoGem)?
<Anders> I dont feel anything, we have never emulated a game that anyone else has already emulated and I don't see the point of it. If it is emulated good, I think it is more fun to do something new.
<DragonYen> When you started NeoRage, why did you pick NeoGeo to emulate?
<Anders> Because it is a great system, and I have one myself, a cart version.
<DragonYen> When NeoRage is "finished"... and there is nothing left to fix/add... What will you do? Do you have any plans on creating another emulator?
<Anders> I have a couple of ideas but i dont want to tell them right now ;)
<DragonYen> You emu authors and game dumpers are so secretive ;> What else isn't emulated/finished in NeoRage yet?
<Anders> If you mean hardware related I can only think of Line scrolling and of course sound and cd support - but of course alot of user friendly stuff is missing
<DragonYen> This is a silly question, and don't put much thought into it, but if you were a tree, what kind of tree would you want to be?
<Anders> I have never thought about it but I guess I must say EK (swedish) it is the tree (in sweden) that can grow to be the oldest.
<DragonYen> Anything else to Add/Say?
<Anders> No.
<DragonYen> Anders, I would like to thank you for your time... and I am sure everyone else in #neogeo would like me to thank you too... so MANY THANX, for the Interview and the GREAT emulator NeoRage.. Tell Janne we said HI! :)
<Anders> Thanks, I will tell him.
[We exchanged a few kind words, and then we were done]

Many ThanX to : Tetsuoman, Vitor, No_Face, caliguy, Reiginsei, Yars, quang, l33tness, lataf, fifreak, amptor, [rydeen], SpkLeader, SumideXE, someone, Askar, rob`, |PrimeGL|, {ZeroAge}, RoAMER, Ranma2000, Peace_, JonR2, bosstone^, JaguarPaw, Zeratoss, turbofan, Fa][aL, DDWarrior, LordCrew, Kuroko, MegaHertz, Protoman, crashtes, fssd, acidrIEgn, NeoGouki, Technospy, mrgsoft, and Vinx! (Plus everyone else in #neogeo on EFNet) - Who helped with questions :)

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