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[RELEASE] Hyper Launcher - A ROM launcher using HyperSpin assets
#1
Hyper Launcher
A ROM launcher for Kodi that uses HyperSpin assets.



Features:
  • Generates ROM lists from HyperList XML's.
  • Configure fallback artwork for game icons and fanart.
  • Background playback of trailer videos after a predefined idle time (requires service.hyper.launcher).
  • Is a video addon so more view and artwork types are available (clearart, banner, thumbs, poster, media, fanart and trailers)
  • Search all systems or individual systems.
  • Set launcher script per system or per game or when starting a ROM.
  • Sort lists by Name, Genre and Date, Rating and Studio.
  • Automatically navigate to last browsed system on Kodi restart.(requires service.hyper.launcher)
  • Attract mode when idle (requires service.hyper.launcher).
  • Display associated game and system artwork (videos, music, images and PDF manuals) in Kodi (PDF's require additional software).
  • RetroPlayer support (needs more testing with multi file roms)
  • Select random item.
  • Ability to launch game variants when selecting parent ROM.
  • Option to display a 'All Games' main menu item.

Configuration:
The addon requires several files to be copied to the addon_data/plugin.hyper.launcher directory within your userdata folder before the addon is usable (necessary folders are created on the addon's first run):
  • For each system, a HyperList XML file is required inside the systems folder. The name of the XML file is what will be displayed in Kodi and will used for system configs, system artwork and system videos.
  • A system config file in the systems_config folder for each system. File is to be named the same as the corresponding HyperList file with '-config' appended to the end. Eg: a HyperList XML file named "Atari 2600.xml" will be displayed in Kodi as "Atari 2600" and will require a config file named "Atari 2600-config.xml". Example file here.
  • A launcher script in the launcher_scripts folder, with the name of the launcher script contained within the system config file. To use RetroPlayer create an empty file called 'kodi_retroplayer' and use that as the launcher in the system-config.xml. Windows and Linux examples.
    Arguments that are passed to non RetroPlayer scripts are: %1 = system name , %2 = game name , %3 = full rom path (folder + file name + extension) , %4 = file name only , %5 = file extension.

Artwork:
  • System artwork goes in the 'systems_artwork/SYSTEM NAME' folder and is automatically used if present. They are named in the same style as the system config file, Eg: Trailer is -trailer, logo is -logo, poster is -poster, icon is -icon, fanart is -fanart. Usable video file types are .flv, .avi and .mp4 and usable artwork types are .png, .jpg and .ico. Additional system artwork (PDF manual's, videos etc)can be placed in the 'systems_artwork/SYSTEM NAME' and can be viewed via the context menu option "View Artwork' (Additional artwork does not need a specific name).
  • ROM artwork can be placed any where, with the paths defined in the system config file and will be automatically used if present. File name is to be the same as the ROM filename. For fanart and icons, you can configure a fallback artwork path to be used if the first choice is not found. Usable video file types are .flv, .avi and .mp4 and usable artwork types are .png, .jpg and .ico. Additional game artwork (PDF manual's, videos etc) within folder in the artwork base path can be viewed via the context menu option "View Artwork'.
  • Automatic background playback of trailers when idle, attract mode and returning to the last opened Hyper Launcher folder after launching a ROM requires the service.hyper.launcher addon to be installed. Idle time before either is defined in service.hyper.launcher addon settings, with 0 to disable.
  • For PDF files there are two options for viewing - Ghostscript and plugin.image.pdfreader. Ghost script is far more compatible and integrated, but needs a external program, can be slower and is not available on all platforms (Android). As a fallback plugin.image.pdfreader can be used and is available via my repo. Enable and configure via the addon's settings.

Additional configuration:
Alternate launchers:
You can set a alternate launcher for specific games via the system-config.xml. Example in the system-config.xml linked to above. The game name tag needs to be games filename. It is also possible to use a alternate launcher when running a ROM via the context menu.

Game variants:
The addon can be configured to display a list of game variants when selecting the parent game. Game variants need to be in a sub-folder in that systems rom directory and folder needs to be named the same as the game ROM (minus the file extension). Parent game file name also needs to be added to the system-config.xml, example in the system-config.xml linked to above. Alternate launchers can be configured for all the game variations or individual variants using the method above.

DOWNLOAD:
Install via my repo


plugin.hyper.launcher.systems.artwork
Contains icons, fanart, clear-logos and posters for many systems, which have been edited to suit Kodi. Is far from complete though, contributions are welcome. Guide for creating new artwork in archive.

Addon installation instructions can be found here.
Code can be found on GitHub.

Useful links:
RocketLauncher
HyperList
HyperSpin ROM tools
HyperSync
EmuMovies
EmuMovies DSU
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#2
Game rating icons:
Age rating icons can be added to your game lists by copying the image files from RocketLauncher to your Kodi skin directory. The following is for Aeon Nox 5, but I imagine it would be similar for other skins (The images may be deleted when the skin is updated, I'm not sure):
Copy the files in RocketLauncher/Media/Rating/_Default/ to the addons/skin.aeon.nox.5/media/flags/mpaa directory within your Kodi userdata directory.
Image

Studio icons:
Studio icons can be displayed to Kodi (depending on which skin you're using, Kodi will already display some of these). You will wither need to copy the icons to a folder that your skin uses for studio icons, or if your skin is using a resources addon for studio icons (like Aeon Nox 5), you'll need to decompile the resource addon's Textures.xbt, add the game studio icons and recompile the Textures.xbt file.
I've cloned Kisuan's game icons and have begun adding new ones and renaming existing icons to match the info in HyperList XML's - My icon repo is here, contributions are welcome!
Image
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#3
Updates in first post:
Hyper Launcher 1.1.0:
Quote:Made available additional kodi artwork types (banners, clearart, thumb, poster, media).
Changed the way artwork is handled - now will scan a base directory for artwork for a particular ROM and will create a list with available artwork.
Ability to view PDF manuals in Kodi (plugin.image.pdfreader required)
Ability to configure a alternate launcher per ROM
Preliminary RetroPlayer support (needs further testing with multi file roms)
Only one fallback artwork image for icons and fanart now.
Display information about console - release year, manufacturer and a description
System-config.xml file layouts have changed.
Small changes.

Hyper Launcher 1.1.1:
Quote:Added focus random item context menu option
Hyper Launcher service 1.1.0:
Quote:Added attract mode. Set timeout via service addon settings, 0 to disable. (currently doesnt work properly due to a bug in Kodi)
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#4
Thanks for this wonderful addon. Since RCB is not continued any more (at least officially) this seems to be a good successor.
I used HyperSpin for about one year. Then I switched from Windows to Openelec and had to drop HyperSpin.
Things I didn't like with HyperSpin:
  • Folder structure
    In HyperSpin roms and associated files are located in different folders, which each have a flat content. This makes it difficult to keep your files in sync. Whenever you want to delete a game you have to touch each folder. The second disadvantage is that each version of a game (beta, trainer, hack) needs dedicated artwork files, so you end up with several copies of the same artwork file but named differently.
    As the development of Kodi is moving towards proper game integration, I expect the folder structure to be like with movies, i.e. having a folder per game containing all essential files:
    Code:
    <GameName>/<Rom>
              /game.nfo
              /fanart.jpg
              /boxfront.jpg
              /boxback.jpg
              /... other associated files
    In RCB this is somehow possible (paths to artwork are configurable in the corresponding .nfo file).

  • No support for multiple roms per game (I mean betas, trainers and hacks, not multi-disk roms)
    In HyperSpin each version means an entry in the games list, which make this list bloated. IMHO another menu level would be better to handle this.

  • No overview of all games across all platforms. One always has to select a platform first.
    This is pretty handy for sorting out games (e.g. I only play GB games that were not released for GBC/GBA).

Are there any plans to address these weaknesses with your addon?
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#5
I'm going to give this a whirl!
G

Twitter: @GLloyd303

Pipo X9 | Windows 10.1
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#6
I have an hyperspin already set up ( with the old hyperlauch) , could I use some of it to set up your add on? Like the xml files,images,videos....would it be faster that way or must I set your ( very very interesting) add on in a separate way?
Thanks a lot will definitely try this add on! Thanks for your work!
Cheers
Reply
#7
(2016-02-12, 13:54)MaxMustermann Wrote: Thanks for this wonderful addon. Since RCB is not continued any more (at least officially) this seems to be a good successor.
I used HyperSpin for about one year. Then I switched from Windows to Openelec and had to drop HyperSpin.
Things I didn't like with HyperSpin:
  • Folder structure
    In HyperSpin roms and associated files are located in different folders, which each have a flat content. This makes it difficult to keep your files in sync. Whenever you want to delete a game you have to touch each folder. The second disadvantage is that each version of a game (beta, trainer, hack) needs dedicated artwork files, so you end up with several copies of the same artwork file but named differently.
    As the development of Kodi is moving towards proper game integration, I expect the folder structure to be like with movies, i.e. having a folder per game containing all essential files:
    Code:
    <GameName>/<Rom>
              /game.nfo
              /fanart.jpg
              /boxfront.jpg
              /boxback.jpg
              /... other associated files
    In RCB this is somehow possible (paths to artwork are configurable in the corresponding .nfo file).

To be honest, I dont see the point of this - deleting files across multiple directories is easy via gui or cli and having artwork in that format would make it harder to keep ontop of artwork with the current tools available, neither EmumoviesDSU or HyperSync support artwork in this format. Plus RocketLauncher and RetroFE (possibly others too) also use this style of artwork storage. Duplicate artwork is a annoying, especially as I like to keep mine on a SSD, but I'd rather have a few extra images than not use HyperSync, DSU or RocketLauncher's Pause. I guess when RetroPlayer is merged I can see if this is necessary, but it would probably be easier to use a script to link files to their required directories/files names outside of the plugin.

Quote:
  • No support for multiple roms per game (I mean betas, trainers and hacks, not multi-disk roms)
    In HyperSpin each version means an entry in the games list, which make this list bloated. IMHO another menu level would be better to handle this.

  • Yeah this could be handy, I too would add a second entry for HD texture packs etc.. maybe a section for game variations inside system-config.xml, add the parent as a element and list all variations under that element. If the parent is present have kodi display another list with possible alternates when the parent is selected.

    Quote:
  • No overview of all games across all platforms. One always has to select a platform first.
    This is pretty handy for sorting out games (e.g. I only play GB games that were not released for GBC/GBA).

  • Previously a blank search would return all games, but I disallowed these types of searches as they could take a long time with a ample collection, but I'll add a setting to allow them. I saw that you can sort lists by file paths so this would enable grouping of roms by system. I'm hoping that threading will speed up list generation and searches so blocking blank searches could become moot.


    (2016-02-12, 23:49)bakito Wrote: I have an hyperspin already set up ( with the old hyperlauch) , could I use some of it to set up your add on? Like the xml files,images,videos....would it be faster that way or must I set your ( very very interesting) add on in a separate way?
    Thanks a lot will definitely try this add on! Thanks for your work!
    Cheers

    You can reuse everything, though your xml's and system artwork needs to be in the userdata/systems folder. For your game art use the HS locations in the system-config.xml file. If logo view for systems is important to you use the logos in the artwork pack I provided above - I've edited the HS ones so they are inline with Kodi's clearlogo guidelines (400*155 and centered in the image), most of the ones provided by HS were of differing sizes and the art was not centered within the image, so they didn't look very nice when displayed in Kodi (at least with logo view in Aeon Nox 5).
    Reply
    #8
    v1.1.2 in first post:
    Quote:Artwork lists now display mp3 and ico files
    Add addon option to enable blank search
    Artwork now uses filename not game name (fixes mame not displaying artwork)
    Fix opening of pdf files
    Enable cacheToDisc=True on system and game lists
    Add additional sort methods
    Always display random items context menu item
    Reply
    #9
    Well i look into it and i am a bit confused how to set up this.... Since i already have an hyperspin set up it is not that bad ( it is the rlauncher part that confused me as i set up my hyperspin a long time ago with the old hyperlaunch ahk...) BUT i happen to have many ( many) art and videos for my hyperspin that i could spare, the problem is that is a huge amont of files, if you are interested i could share it with the forum but i really don't know how ( ftp ?) if you could help me exchange this files I'll be glad to do it!
    Pm me so we can help each other ( and don't mess with this thread with out of subject posts )...
    Cheers!
    Reply
    #10
    Rocketauncher is the new name for Hyperlauncher. You can use any thing to launch your emulators, you just need a launcher script for it. My example was for rocketlauncher because that’s what I use. If you want to use hyperlauncher you'll need to set up a launcher script to suit.

    As for the artwork, probably best if its added to the emumovies/hyperspin websites/ftp so everyone can benefit.
    Reply
    #11
    How can you get this to work on OpenElec using Retroarch?
    Reply
    #12
    You'd need some script-fu to convert the system name to the core you want to use, eg:

    retroarch_launcher.sh
    Code:
    #!/bin/bash
    if [[ "$1" = "Sony Playstation" ]] ; then
    RETROARCH_CORE="/path/to/retroarch/core/to/use/for/psx.so"
    elif [[ "$1" = "Super Nintendo Entertainment System" ]] ; then
    RETROARCH_CORE="/path/to/retroarch/core/to/use/for/snes.so"
    fi

    retroarch -L "$RETROARCH_CORE" "$3"

    Not sure if the above will work without testing it on OE, but that would be the gist of it. You'd need to edit it to suit, add bits in to quit/restart kodi if required, add to the statement for extra cores etc...

    EDIT: or make a separate script for each system
    Reply
    #13
    Well my artwork,video etc... Came from hyperspin ftp Wink so...
    Anyway thanks for your answers!
    Cheers
    Reply
    #14
    Update in first post, plugin.hyper.launcher-1.1.3:

    Quote:Add support for game variants.
    Add threading for game list generation and searches (dont think it makes much difference, might do on low power systems).
    Add multi-language support.
    Checks for blank xml data.
    Do not replace default context menu items.
    Fix text encoding... hopefully...

    plugin.hyper.launcher-1.1.4
    Quote:Fix text encoding for launching pdf's
    Reply
    #15
    Update in first post, plugin.hyper.launcher-1.1.7

    Quote:Add context menu item to select specific launcher at rom run time.
    Add more language strings.
    Reduce amount of searching for artwork.
    Add option to designate file types to launch.

    plugin.hyper.launcher-1.1.7
    Quote:Fix fallback artwork having priority

    service.hyper.launcher-1.1.1
    Quote:Skip loop if viewing artwork lists
    Reply
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