Weekly Software News August 5th to 11th

weekly

This week as the temperature reaches a peak over here, making me run away from my desktop computer as fast as I can (since it acts like a fucking heater in summer and raises the room temperature by 5 degrees celsius), the Pandora scene activity is at its lowest level. This is probably due to a combination of vacations, trips and lack of energy if you are as 夏場って  as I am. Anyway, Exophase still found the time to update DraStic and to make it even more awesome, and we get a nice FBA update from Dave18, as well as IOQuake3 AND Return to Castle Wolfenstein from PtitSeb. Actually that alone should keep you busy for a while.

Software Updates (11):

  • DraStic : new version, as good as ever, with a great number of improvements on compatibility. Several games that were crashing now work fine, and some visual issues have been corrected as well. You are a fool if you don’t update!
  • QMMP: this excellent Qt-based music player gets a new update with several bug fixes, one concerning ogg file conversion. I like this player very much and you should consider it as a contender for Audacious or DeadBeef.
  • PandaBAS: this BASIC interpreter with several custom functions has been updated with text scaling and matrix maths. While it is a BASIC language, it is pretty fast and you can run relatively complex scenes on screen with it.
  • RetroRadio: internet check-up function has been modified in this version. Nothing that should be apparent to the user. So you are good to go with this update.
  • OpenArena: PtitSeb is still toying with games using the Quake3 engine, and this new version of OpenArena improves the GLES renderer a bit. He added left nub support as well. You better get this!
  • As you can guess, he took the opportunity to update the whole Jedi series with his modified GLES renderer: so you got updates for Jedi Knight II (and its demo) and Jedi Academy (and its demo) as well!
  • Milkyhelper: this is the forgotten PND packages manager! Everyone pretty much uses PNDManager these days, but Milkyhelper can also do the very same things. While it is a command line tool, you may want to give it a try…
  • FBA with CAPEX FE: Dave18 released a new version of FBA based on the latest sources. While more testing is needed it appears that some games would run faster than in the previous versions.

New Releases (6)

  • TUMIKI Fighters: another excellent shooting game from Kenta Cho, this time in full 3D. It uses simple 3D geometric forms but it still looks gorgeous, and the concept of being able to use enemy fighters against them is very innovative. Great job from MH-T on the conversion !
  • GNU Backgammon: a backgammon game, that was certainly something we were missing on Pandora! MarkW has now fixed this and you can enjoy another board game on the go.
  • Virtual Midi Piano Keyboard: a tool to plug your Pandora to a Midi keyboard in order to produce sounds from your Pandora. Basically it can receive and generate MIDI events.
  • IOQuake3: finally a new version of Quake3, ported by PtitSeb, is available! For some reason the previous build available on the older repo did not work with my nubs. This one should work flawlessly from the comments I could read. You can also use the mouse in case you are not comportable with the nubs for aiming. Apparently it runs fine EVEN on a old CC unit. Awesome.
  • Return To Castle Wolfenstein: the famous reboot of the Wolfenstein franchise is back, with the glorious Quake3 engine. As highlighted in my previous post on the subject with a video of it in action, it runs pretty well on the Pandora. It comes with a demo, too, in case you want to try it out first before buying it, but don’t forget that if you are in Germany you cannot legally own/play/use this demo because of… you know what.

That’s it for this week. If you have time to test anything, don’t forget one of the best ways to show your appreciation is:

  • to post a comment on the repo for what you used
  • to rate the said application
  • and explain your rating (be it good or bad)

Without feedback, porters have no clue as to what’s working or not. Take the time to do that at least.

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