Migrating per-game settings from vanilla Dosbox to Dosbox Pure

Not every game needs this, but a couple, like say for example the elder scrolls games, do. If I try to run Arena like other DOS games on Dosbox Pure, I get the error about “MSCDEX driver not installed”. From googling, one can infer the issue is the game isn’t installed. It isn’t, it runs fine on Vanilla Dosbox (excuse the broken ability to take fullscreen screenshots without exiting fullscreen, it scales normally otherwise)

What seems to be happening is that Dosbox Pure removed the ability to mount directories as cdroms. I infer that because manually entering the autoexec settings that ArenaSetup uses fails at the first mount, which I will paste:

[autoexec] @ECHO OFF mount C “.” mount d “.” -t cdrom c: cls SET ARENADATA=C: d: ACD -Ssbpdig.adv -IOS220 -IRQS7 -DMAS1 -Mgenmidi.adv -IOM330 -IRQM2 -DMAM1 Exit

It fails at mounting d with error: “Illegal type cdrom”. Running the autexec through a batch file gets the error that D does not exist.

This issue only happens through retorarch. I am able to mostly load the game on other random Dosbox forks with the same settings. I can’t seem to get Dosbox Pure to not ignore the conf. I placed it in the system folders and named it both ACD and Arena, trying the respectively-named executables with them. I have multiple confs within the Arena instalation, Dosbox Pure shows none of them if I’m supposed to manually load them.

On the topic of Daggerfall, although essentially superseded by the Unity recreation, it isn’t detected by retroarch’s scans at all, but is actually more straightforward with its error by stating that it’s unable to locate the CD, which goes back to the inability to mount directories as CDs, or so it seems. I didn’t change confs with this one as much.

Also, an additional issue. It seems that key combinations can’t be mapped. For example, in order to get A and D strafing to work, in Arena’s case, both alt and the left and right arrow keys have to be combined for their respective directions. Is it really not possible? It would be sort of awkward for this game, but other keys around that can be mapped to turning.

Yeah, I think Dosbox-pure can’t mount directories as CDs. I haven’t used it much, though, so I could be wrong about that :man_shrugging:

You definitely can’t map macros in RetroArch. You can use something external like antimicro, though.

The SVN version of Dosbox has the commands still working, and I can get Arena to load if I type the commands manually, but without sound. The commands for the sound don’t fit. Arena has a sound card utility, but it crashes. I don’t understand what is this “Set Blaster” and ULTRAMID stuff that Dosbox SVN automatically attempts to do when trying to load up Arena.

Is it possible to automatically load a conf file? I read some documentation and it said it would load if it was in the system folder, and it matched the exec filename. The view-distance mod I have in Arena requires 200,000 cycles, and I don’t think it can be set like that from within Retroarch.

Since Dosbox SVN has more commands intact, maybe it would be possible to load a mapper file (either .map or .txt depending on the fork of origin) from standard Dosbox?

I just want to add that the major reason to want to run this in Retroarch is that the output options on Retroarch are WAY superior. Dosbox alone really sucks in that regard.

There’s a partial workaround with the command config -wcd. It generates a conf file that Dosbox-SVN WILL load, although in the save directory contrary to what the documentation says about creating a Dosbox folder in system, with all the normal Dosbox settings seemingly intact, at the inconvenience of having to change it for every game. Pasting the autoexec in there worked.

However, 200,000 cycles behaves differently from normal Dosbox. I get a lot more graphical glitches and at one point, the music stopped working. Other times, the screen stops getting redrawn as soon as the main menu screen. It seems to be different every reset. Also, it still runs about the same speed-wise at least in-game as if I didn’t change anything. On normal Dosbox, the only bugs I get are graphical glitches in the inventory and ESC menus, and inversely-proportional slowdown on said menus.

The pieces might be slowly coming together. What are these settings? They are not documented with the only known mention being an archived 4chan thread of all places? How would one translate 200,000 cycles to… This? Also, I can’t figure out how to make these fine and coarse core settings reappear after experimentally selecting auto on cycles mode.

Also, out of curiosity, the database lists the wrong executable.