Byuu
Byuu

Byuu Celebrates 15 Years of Higan Emulator Software

Computer programmer Byuu marks 15 years since the launch of his popular video game console emulator, Higan.

 

Higan, commonly stylized higan, is a leading emulator for multiple video game consoles, including the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Developed by Byuu, also famed for Bsnes, or bsnes, a dedicated Super Nintendo emulator, the software this month celebrates its 15th birthday.

 

Initially released on October 14, 2004, and written in C++14 and C99 for operating systems including Windows, Linux, macOS, and FreeBSD, the most recent stable release was published by Byuu on November 19, 2017, under a GNU GPLv3 license.

 

“October 14, 2019, marks 15 years since the launch of Higan,” explains Byuu, who recently participated in a highly successful Reddit AMA—or ‘Ask Me Anything’—event hosted by the popular PC gaming community, r/pcgaming. The interactive interview event, he reveals, attracted dozens of questions and hundreds of comments from more than 50 enthusiastic Reddit users. “Taking place on Saturday, September 28, my AMA was also a nice way to mark this month’s anniversary of the initial release of Higan,” adds Byuu.

 

Other AMA events hosted by r/pcgaming in 2019 have, alongside Byuu, featured names including Stone Lantern Games, Finite Reflection Studios, Alien Pixel Studios, Modus Games, Triumph Studios, Virtuverse, and Gunfire Games, as well as Gamecube and Wii emulator Dolphin, Xbox 360 emulator Xenia, and PS3 emulator RPCS3.

 

Byuu also recently announced the launch of Byuu.net. Dedicated to helping other emulator developers, both veteran and aspiring, the website promises free technical writings on emulator software development.

 

Through Byuu.net, Byuu intends to publish regular technical writings and in-depth articles and resources, completely free of charge, dedicated to the development of software emulators and broken down into seven primary sections including ‘Video,’ ‘Audio,’ ‘Game Bugs,’ ‘Compact Discs,’ and ‘Advice.’

 

Technical articles already published to the website by Byuu include ‘Advice: We Stand on the Shoulders of Giants,’ ‘Game Bugs: Super Nintendo,’ ‘Compact Discs: Disc Structure,’ ‘Audio: Dynamic Rate Control,’ ‘Video: Color Emulation,’ and more.

 

A computer programmer with more than two decades of experience, Byuu has been employed as a software engineer for the past 13 years. His primary focus, he says, is on systems programming. Working as a developer in emulation has, Byuu reveals, proved a constant challenge, and one which has helped him to grow both professionally and as a person. “I feel privileged,” he adds, wrapping up, “to be able to be a part of this scene.”

 

To learn more about Byuu, visit https://byuu.org/. To learn more about Higan specifically, meanwhile, or to download a free copy of the popular video game emulator, head to https://higan.byuu.org/.

Byuu.net Launches to Provide Free Technical Writings on Emulator Software Development

Byuu launches new website dedicated to helping other emulator developers, both veteran and aspiring.

A celebrated programmer and software emulator responsible for two of the internet’s largest and best-known Nintendo video game emulators, Byuu announced some time ago that they would commence writing technical articles describing the detailed process of creating software emulators which would be posted to an all-new website. Accordingly, and alongside Byuu.org, Byuu.net has now launched to provide free technical writings on emulator software development.

“Throughout my life, video games have always been a passion of mine,” explains Byuu. While none of us can live forever, he says, he aspires to at least preserve this slice of his youth for future generations through his efforts.

“It’s in the same spirit that I’ve created Byuu.net, with the aim of helping other emulator developers, both veteran and aspiring, to further this cause,” adds Byuu.

Through Byuu.net, Byuu plans to provide free technical writings on how to develop emulator software, promising various in-depth articles and resources dedicated to the development of software emulators.

Technical articles already published include ‘Advice: We Stand on the Shoulders of Giants,’ which contains words of inspiration for aspiring emulator developers, ‘Game Bugs: Super Nintendo,’ a list of SNES game bugs that occur even on original hardware, and ‘Compact Discs: Disc Structure,’ a look into the data that’s stored on CD-ROMs, how that’s encoded into CD image files, and a proposal for a more complete CD-ROM archival format.

The leading emulator developer also explores a powerful technique to keep both video and audio synchronized under emulation in a piece titled ‘Audio: Dynamic Rate Control,’ completes a deep-dive into the issues facing emulators when ROM images omit vital information about the PCBs they’re contained upon in a piece titled ‘Cartridges: Printed Circuit Boards,’ and offers an expert look into what goes into emulating the colors of different retro gaming screens, and why it’s important. “This latter piece of technical writing,” Byuu reveals, “is simply titled ‘Video: Color Emulation.'”

Byuu.net currently centers around seven primary sections. These are ‘Cartridges,’ ‘Compact Discs,’ ‘CPUs,’ ‘Video,’ ‘Audio,’ ‘Game Bugs,’ and ‘Advice.’

The website also hosts datasheets for Bandai WonderSwan, WonderSwan Color, and SwanCrystal; Nintendo Super Famicom, and Super Nintendo Entertainment System; SNK Neo Geo Pocket, and Neo Geo Pocket Color; and Nintendo Game Boy Color. Additional datasheets, meanwhile, focus on Microchip 93LC46, 93LC56, 93LC66, 93LC76, and 93LC86; NEC uPD7720, uPD7725, and uPD96050; and Toshiba TMP95C061F.

A computer programmer with more than two decades of experience, Byuu has been employed as a software engineer for the past 13 years. His primary focus, he says, is on systems programming. “I’m the author of bsnes, a Super Nintendo emulator, and higan, a multi-system emulator,” he explains, “and have been developing emulation software for over 15 years.”

Working as a developer in emulation has, Byuu says, proved a constant challenge that has helped him grow both professionally and as a person. “I feel privileged,” he reveals, “to be able to be a small part of this scene.”

Byuu has currently emulated 24 systems spanning 12 different architectures. “My emulators have always been open-source, and you can find the source code for them on my GitHub page,” he adds, wrapping up.

To learn more about Byuu and Byuu.net, visit https://byuu.net/.