Hi everyone! Everyone on the Dolphin team is very excited for the impending release of Dolphin 5.0, which wraps up all of the incredible improvements throughout the 4.0 life cycle into one final build. While I am not a part of the Dolphin team, I headed the changes for the Melee netplay codeset, which was due for a few updates. Below is a list of useful information and changes!
NOTE: Most of this info pertains to Melee only!
Full Feature List (Melee)
- Boot directly to CSS, set default tournament settings, unlock everything, disable special/trophy messages
- L+R+Start returns to CSS, nametags don't reset when closing port or returning to main menu
- L-cancel % display on results screen
- C-stick functionality in 1P modes, unrestricted pause camera
- Stage striking (X to strike, Z to restore)
- Automatic neutral spawn points
- A+B when ending match for salty runback
- Press Y on stage select to toggle Frozen Mode (disables stage hazards)
- Increase the timing accuracy of button inputs
UI Change for Using the Wii U Adapter
In build 7840 (the current build used for netplay), there is a box in the controller settings that lets you choose "Direct Connect" for the Wii U GC adapter. In the new build, this option is gone. Instead, for each controller, you will choose "Gamecube Adapter for Wii U" as the controller type in the drop-down. Then, you can use the Configure button to enable/disable rumble.
Build 7840 disables rumble by default for all players as part of the netplay codeset. This is a bother for people who use rumble, because they need to go into the settings and enable it every time they start a game. So, rumble is now enabled by default in the new build. It's up to you to disable rumble in the controller settings if you don't want to use it (see above). That way, players can choose their rumble setting from Dolphin instead of having to deal with Melee menus to do so.
Stage Striking (Melee)
The stage strike code has been updated. The stage select screen will now only show the stages enabled in the random stage select menu (tournament stages). You can press Z to display all of the stages again, and X strikes as usual.
Frozen Mode (Melee)
The 20XXTE implementation of freezing stages is now in the netplay codeset! Press Y to toggle Frozen Mode on the stage select screen - your cursor turns blue to indicate that your stage will have frozen hazards. These are the changes made by Frozen Mode:
- Yoshi's Story - No Shy Guys
- Dreamland 64 - No wind
- Pokemon Stadium - No transformations
- Final Destination - No background transitions
- Kongo Jungle 64 - No barrel
Input Lag Adjustments (Melee)
I recently published a video detailing research on the timing of input polls in Melee. These are the changes that will be present in the new netplay codeset:
- The separate, off-sync timer used by the game to retrieve the latest inputs has been removed. Inputs are now retrieved in sync with the game engine update, so that the latest inputs are retrieved immediately before they are used by the game.
- The hardware polling rate of the GC controllers has been doubled from 120Hz to 240Hz.
Netplay Buffer (Melee)
Due to a combination of the above changes and updates to Dolphin, the formula for adjusting buffer is now different. One buffer is now equal to 4ms ping (previously 16ms). This means a ping of 32ms will have a buffer of 8 (ping/4). The number is higher than the last build, but that does not mean higher latency. It's just the way the formula works.
Display Lag Adjustments (Melee)
I've made no changes to Melee's game engine in regards to display lag. After carefully investigating Melee's game loop, I concluded that the game engine requests drawing of the next frame as soon as possible after the frame update is processed. So, there were no corners I was able to cut in order to make the engine draw the frame any sooner than it is currently doing so.
Can You Please Include...?
I would love to, but currently there is only a limited amount of space to store Gecko codes, and the current netplay codeset is completely out of room. A future build of Dolphin may provide more flexibility in where the codes are inserted, in which case we will add more features to the netplay codeset.
The new netplay codeset is in the process of review for being merged into the main build of Dolphin. Smashladder plans to update to the new build when either Dolphin 5.0 or Dolphin 5.0 Release Candidate becomes available. This is tentative but should be happening quite soon, as the Dolphin team is quickly preparing for the 5.0 release. I will update this post once a firm release window is ahead.
I will update this post if any new info arises. Please feel free to ask questions!
Just once again clarifying that I am not a member of the Dolphin team and have only been working specifically with the Melee netplay codeset, so I apologize if I can't answer certain Dolphin-specific questions. There are many topics that should be trusted only to a core Dolphin engineer for an accurate answer or explanation.
Thanks for reading, and enjoy!