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05-04-2020 at 01:02 AM
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PROPOSED MAME RULE SUBMISSION ADDITION

Dear Community,

Twin Galaxies is considering making an addition to the general rules surrounding MAME submissions.

For those that are interested, we ask that you please review the below wording and help us come to the best verbiage so that confusion is kept to a minimum!

The proposed rule addition is as follows -

MAME submissions not using Wolf MAME will be allowed if video of the complete performance is provided along with INP.

The video of the score performance must visibly show hands and controls throughout gameplay. It must also show start up of game launch.

Providing the MAME version # used and etc. all still apply just like a normal WolfMAME submission.

The rest of the MAME submission rules found here would still apply:

https://www.twingalaxies.com/wiki_index.php?title=Policy:Official-MAME-Platform-Submission-Rules-and-Guidelines

So the new MAME rules section top would read like this:

OFFICIAL MAME SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

MAME stands for Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator. When used in conjunction with an arcade game's data files (ROMs, CHDs, samples, etc.), MAME attempts to reproduce that game as faithfully as possible on a more modern general-purpose system. MAME can currently emulate many thousands of classic arcade video games from the very earliest CPU-based systems to much more modern 3D platforms.

For submissions using the Multiple Arcade Machine Emulation platform, Twin Galaxies only accepts submissions from versions of MAME that provide the ability to record "INP" files.

INP files are essentially a recording of all the input data that the MAME program receives from you during a play session, and this recording allows for your gameplay to be identically played back by others with MAME for examination in real time.

There are many versions of MAME that are available. Historically, Twin Galaxies has encouraged the use of a version called WolfMAME since it specifically contains limitations on some general MAME options that may be unfairly used by a player against the rules. Submissions using WolfMAME will tend to be more initially trusted - However, submitters are free to use whatever MAME version they would like as long as that submitters enter in the 3 digit version number of the version of MAME / WolfMAME that was used for the score performance.

MAME submissions not using Wolf MAME are only allowed if video of the complete performance is provided along with INP.

The video of the score performance must visibly show hands and controls throughout gameplay. It must also show start up of game launch.

--rest of MAME guidelines follow below with no further changes--

Please review this wording and suggest any changes or clarifications that you feel may help communicate the rules as best as possible!

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Comments
  1. datagod's Avatar

    Wow! I love it. I don't see any issues with the wording. Thank you for the change.

  2. swaggers's Avatar

    This reads like wolfmame performances don't require video, which they currently do.

    Unsure if the point is the video has to be done live as the gameplay happens.

    Thought most of using wolfmame was its extra checks against cheating. Don't understand the move to a less secure version.

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  3. Almighty Dreadlock's Avatar

    Just do whatever you want, people, because MAME adjudication has become a complete joke. Submissions are now being accepted by voters who do nothing more than watch the playback recording. No analysis comments, no INP downloads.

    I said this would happen, and it did. Only a clairvoyant like myself could have foreseen it.

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  4. OOO's Avatar

    Could the creators of this wall post please read thoroughly the thread created by Jace Hall.

    https://www.twingalaxies.com/entry.php/8018-Small-Note-on-MAME-Adjudications/page2#comments

    I would also like to suggest that Twin Galaxies has been trying for the last few years to do the right thing and bring credibility to every score that goes into the scoreboard. It should not be made easier, for the sake of making a queue faster, to accept incorrect submissions and later it gets pulled out, assuming it can be pulled out at all. For example, a 20 million score is accepted on a title. Jason Bennett writes a story of the great achievement and other gaming sites refer to the Twin Galaxies story. Then we find out the submission was on the wrong settings/incorrect and needs to go through the lengthy dispute process that very few people can even initiate. TG is ridiculed. The voters are ridiculed and penalized. If TG has it's own credibility rating, like members do here, then the global video gaming community will again lower TG's credibility rating.

    inp analysis is necessary. This is my view. A video with hands on controls for non WM MAME, without correct inp analysis is not acceptable. Dip settings need to be CLEARLY verified, correct ROMS need to be checked, correct speed needs to be checked, and a video may not show the first, and definitely not the 2nd and 3rd. A video may also not clearly show or provide a certain aspect for submission approval. inp analysis does, except for cheat stitched inps. The LIVE video hands on controls with the WM analysis would be the best solution. If the queue gets long, then so be it. Better that than a famous scoreboard that is ridiculed and rife with errors, becoming the laughing stock of the video gaming world, and the records there, in doubt and closer to worthless as times goes on.

  5. datagod's Avatar

    [QUOTE=Almighty Dreadlock;bt56816]I said this would happen, and it did. Only a clairvoyant like myself could have foreseen it.[/size][/QUOTE]

    That is a really cool superpower. Can you tell us who all the blind voters are?

  6. Jace Hall's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Almighty Dreadlock

    Just do whatever you want, people, because MAME adjudication has become a complete joke. Submissions are now being accepted by voters who do nothing more than watch the playback recording. No analysis comments, no INP downloads.

    I said this would happen, and it did. Only a clairvoyant like myself could have foreseen it.

    A track competitor that believes a score performance on that track is not valid according to the rules and should be removed from the database, can file a dispute claim and provide definitive and objective evidence to validate their claim.

    Invalid scores will be removed of course.

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  7. Jace Hall's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by OOO

    Could the creators of this wall post please read thoroughly the thread created by Jace Hall.

    https://www.twingalaxies.com/entry.php/8018-Small-Note-on-MAME-Adjudications/page2#comments

    I would also like to suggest that Twin Galaxies has been trying for the last few years to do the right thing and bring credibility to every score that goes into the scoreboard. It should not be made easier, for the sake of making a queue faster, to accept incorrect submissions and later it gets pulled out, assuming it can be pulled out at all. For example, a 20 million score is accepted on a title. Jason Bennett writes a story of the great achievement and other gaming sites refer to the Twin Galaxies story. Then we find out the submission was on the wrong settings/incorrect and needs to go through the lengthy dispute process that very few people can even initiate. TG is ridiculed. The voters are ridiculed and penalized. If TG has it's own credibility rating, like members do here, then the global video gaming community will again lower TG's credibility rating.

    inp analysis is necessary. This is my view. A video with hands on controls for non WM MAME, without correct inp analysis is not acceptable. Dip settings need to be CLEARLY verified, correct ROMS need to be checked, correct speed needs to be checked, and a video may not show the first, and definitely not the 2nd and 3rd. A video may also not clearly show or provide a certain aspect for submission approval. inp analysis does, except for cheat stitched inps. The LIVE video hands on controls with the WM analysis would be the best solution. If the queue gets long, then so be it. Better that than a famous scoreboard that is ridiculed and rife with errors, becoming the laughing stock of the video gaming world, and the records there, in doubt and closer to worthless as times goes on.

    For clarity, the current MAME adjudication process remains unchanged.

    The proposed addition to the process is that if a user doesn't use WOLF MAME, and instead uses MAME, then a video showing hands becomes necessary.

    In ALL submissions, an INP still must be provided, so that INP analysis can be performed whenever desired or needed - all the rest of the MAME standard submission rules still would apply.



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  8. Jace Hall's Avatar

    Please let me know if there are any other concerns or objections. If not, than the rule additions will get the thumbs up!

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  9. Garrett Holland's Avatar

    I would like to add that the dispute process appears to have been streamlined, the past few going through in a matter of a day or two. If there is an issue thereafter presented in an accepted submission, I'm confident the dispute process would work as intended. If the submitter whines about their disputed score being removed, then they whine. I'm sure we've all developed coping mechanisms to deal with e-whiners. As for me, I support this change until an argument is presented giving a good reason why it shouldnt be supported.

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  10. OOO's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Jace Hall

    Please let me know if there are any other concerns or objections. If not, than the rule additions will get the thumbs up!


    As you are determined to implement this change, I would suggest that in this case the video recording MUST CLEARLY show the dip switch settings used in the performance. It does not make sense to provide a video performance and not show the settings used. They can simply press the TAB key and show the dip settings. It takes only about 15 seconds for the process. The show dip settings rule I have suggested will also help alleviate the expected results from the inp analysis.

    My suggested change is as follows (highlighted in bold):

    MAME submissions not using Wolf MAME will be allowed if video of the complete performance is provided along with the INP.

    The video of the score performance must visibly show hands and controls throughout gameplay. The video must clearly show the dip settings used during the score performance. It must also show start up of game launch.

    Please implement this suggestion.



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  11. OOO's Avatar

    Hi Andrew @Barthax and Robert @RTM , could you please consider providing feedback to this wall proposal supported by Jace. You both have decades of experience in the TG process of submission approvals.

    ThanksBarthax, Garrett Holland thanked this post
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    Updated 05-06-2020 at 04:24 PM by OOO
  12. Barthax's Avatar

    I'm generally OK with the idea. WolfMAME was source-code available from the start and so any marginally intelligent dev could rework it to remove it's limitations anyway. There's no telling how many people will have done this over the years so long as their INP looked like a WolfMAME (some fakes were caught over at MARP but others highly suspected were not proven).


    Quote Originally Posted by OOO

    The video of the score performance must visibly show hands and controls throughout gameplay. The video must clearly show the dip settings used during the score performance. It must also show start up of game launch.


    Just on this: there should be no single overriding rule on these as there are multiple different circumstances based on the game. The simulated hardware DIP switches and/or Softswitches (BIOS) should be shown. However, it is important to note that if there are hardware DIP switches which get changed through the TAB menu, it does not mean the changes are in the game play until after a reboot of the virtual arcade machine. Like arcade, of course, many settings can be determined through play so it's not absolutely necessary for all games, IMO.

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  13. OOO's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Barthax

    I'm generally OK with the idea. WolfMAME was source-code available from the start and so any marginally intelligent dev could rework it to remove it's limitations anyway. There's no telling how many people will have done this over the years so long as their INP looked like a WolfMAME (some fakes were caught over at MARP but others highly suspected were not proven).




    Just on this: there should be no single overriding rule on these as there are multiple different circumstances based on the game. The simulated hardware DIP switches and/or Softswitches (BIOS) should be shown. However, it is important to note that if there are hardware DIP switches which get changed through the TAB menu, it does not mean the changes are in the game play until after a reboot of the virtual arcade machine. Like arcade, of course, many settings can be determined through play so it's not absolutely necessary for all games, IMO.


    The process of verification needs to be simple and as easy as possible for the adjudicators. Showing the dip settings in every submission makes it simple to compare and easy to see if the settings of the performance match the rules of the track. It takes 20 seconds to make that simple important check.

    And yes, if the dip setting is changed, then the performance must start after the reboot of MAME, and the dip settings shown again "during the score performance", as stated in the proposed rule addition.

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  14. Barthax's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by OOO

    The process of verification needs to be simple and as easy as possible for the adjudicators. Showing the dip settings in every submission makes it simple to compare and easy to see if the settings of the performance match the rules of the track. It takes 20 seconds to make that simple important check.

    The problem with many hard-and-fast rules, regardless of how well-meaning in their inception, is that it causes a problem later down the road or even for current participation.

    Over the past several years, many submissions have been accepted without such a rule being in force - the analysis was done to verify what was in the INP. This has waned simply because it is too intensive for the person carrying it out - we've been through at least 10 different people analysing INPs. About half of them realised it was just too intensive to even bother with and I hope I can speak for those that stuck with it: we just burned out and it stops being something to enjoy.

    Many people have recorded INPs and may not yet have submitted them. However, like when the "must have video" rule came into enforcement for MAME, many people couldn't submit the INPs they had because there was no accompanying video. Enacting a rule enforcing the display of settings will cause a similar rejection of many existing INPs not yet submitted.

    The current TGSAP permits the submissions on other platforms without always showing the settings because often the settings can be determined from the play. However, TGSAP is already a massive barrier to participation around here. Why hamper a move designed to increase the number of particpants and the number of people capable of reviewing accurately? The burden of proof remains with the submitter. Longer term members become used to including the settings as a matter of course and newer members need to be given a reasonable learning curve to get into the run of things - not a brick wall reject.

  15. OOO's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Barthax


    The problem with many hard-and-fast rules, regardless of how well-meaning in their inception, is that it causes a problem later down the road or even for current participation.

    Over the past several years, many submissions have been accepted without such a rule being in force - the analysis was done to verify what was in the INP. This has waned simply because it is too intensive for the person carrying it out - we've been through at least 10 different people analysing INPs. About half of them realised it was just too intensive to even bother with and I hope I can speak for those that stuck with it: we just burned out and it stops being something to enjoy.

    Many people have recorded INPs and may not yet have submitted them. However, like when the "must have video" rule came into enforcement for MAME, many people couldn't submit the INPs they had because there was no accompanying video. Enacting a rule enforcing the display of settings will cause a similar rejection of many existing INPs not yet submitted.

    The current TGSAP permits the submissions on other platforms without always showing the settings because often the settings can be determined from the play. However, TGSAP is already a massive barrier to participation around here. Why hamper a move designed to increase the number of particpants and the number of people capable of reviewing accurately? The burden of proof remains with the submitter. Longer term members become used to including the settings as a matter of course and newer members need to be given a reasonable learning curve to get into the run of things - not a brick wall reject.

    I agree it is very onerous to perform the INP analysis properly. It is complex and the number of variations in WolfMAME (over 113) and different games (in the 1000s) makes it very tedious and time consuming. This is why I think the suggestion by Jace to automate the INP analysis is a good idea. However the process may evolve so that one day, the INP analysis is no longer performed for all MAME submissions, and only the LIVE recording showing the dip settings with hands on controls during the score performance are required.

    The "must have video rule" was a TG decision. When the rule came into effect, the WolfMAME gamer could simply video record the playback of their old inp file and upload their video and inp file for adjudication. That's what I did. This also made it easier for adjudicators to review. I think today all TG submissions for over 120 different platforms must be LIVE recordings, except for one, MAME. I don't think any submissions on these other platforms are accepted today by a screenshot, and replays on EMU are not accepted. However in contrast, video replays of inp files for WolfMAME submissions are accepted.

    The proposed additional rule is for MAME non WolfMAME submissions. Currently TG do not accept MAME non WolfMAME submissions. The proposed rule addition in this wall post does not affect the WolfMAME submission process. For WolfMAME submissions a LIVE recording with hands on controls and showing the dip settings are not required. You just need to show a video of the inp playback. However rules can change in the future.

    Regarding performance settings, we are always guessing if not showing them. Remove the doubt for all submissions under this proposal. Help the new and old gamers and adjudicators to submit and approve with confidence. Show the dip settings, it is very fast and easy. All arcade submissions should show the dip settings, and for good reason, and so should the video with hands on controls of all MAME non WolfMAME submissions under this proposal. If a gamer forgets to show the dips, or hands on controls, or the MAME bootup as examples, then the submission is rejected. That's how rules are supposed to work. You call it a brick wall reject, I call it not complying with the rules.

    Is it hard to make a video, show hands on controls and show dip settings, in today's world of verification, technology and TG's website capability? I vote it's easy and that TGSAP is far better than the previous approval process.



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    Updated 05-08-2020 at 02:15 AM by OOO
  16. Jace Hall's Avatar

    Ok.

    Regarding a requirement showing the dip switch settings, how about this wording:

    Showing the dip settings in every MAME and WolfMAME video submission is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

    It only takes a few seconds to make it simple for adjudicators to compare and see if the settings of the performance match the rules of the track..

    If the dip setting is changed, then the performance must start after the reboot of MAME or WolfMAME, and the dip settings shown again "during the score performance."

    The rationale behind it just being highly recommended and not REQUIRED is because the INP must be provided in all cases, and ultimately any concern about dip switch settings can be checked via analysis there as needed.

    Certainly, submitters who want the best chance of validation for their performances will show dips in their videos, but if a submitter forgets to capture the dips in video or is unable to for whatever reason, the missing dips will not be an auto-reject (since the dip info is in the INP.)

    Make sense?

    Unless there is a huge community objection to these rule additions I think we may be ready to update the general rules.

    The time for comments is now! :)

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  17. datagod's Avatar


  18. Max's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Jace Hall

    Unless there is a huge community objection to these rule additions I think we may be ready to update the general rules.

    Out of curiosity, what is the community demand for vanilla mame? Roughly how many people are asking for vanilla mame?

  19. francoisadt's Avatar

    I have a question and a proposal.


    Proposal : On recording video for non-Wolfmame games:

    I am proposing that the full startup also be shown because the "startup| will show that .INP file was created at point of game play. User can navigate to .INP folder before and after game play and do show the startup command. This wil eliminate the means to createa fake .INP in the background by some other .BAT (batch file caommand) for non-Wolfmame games.

    Question : On Wolfmame games:

    My home PC (Windows XP) and my laptop graphics card is too slow to record on screen and play the game. This mean the graphcis card need to in real-time upate the Wolfmame game window as well as record in the background. This makes that the game can stutter or even play little bit slower and suddenly very afst to push up FPS. The average FPS is still 99% but it does makes the game play very difficult due to speed variation can happen at a critical milisecond at a crucial point in a game.

    So may the following be allowed for Wolfmame games:

    - Record the game/play the game locally with Wolfmame without video screen recorder

    - Then afterwards :

    - Start a screen recorder,

    - Show the execution of playback command with .INP/.WLF created in the first step.

    ( So here the full startup of playing back what was recorded via .INP file.)

    - Show the playback gameplay in video

    This enable the gamer to play the game continuously without graphics card problems and show case the game played via a video afterwards.

    If the above scneario is allowed for Wolfmame games please state so also in the rules.

    Recently another gamer did submit a Donkey Kong game playback and the screen also stutter and the game play becomes difficult once a burst happen and the player crash unintentially not an error move.


  20. francoisadt's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by 000
    When the rule came into effect, the WolfMAME gamer could simply video record the playback of their old inp file and upload their video and inp file for adjudication.


    If this is allowed please state so in the rules. See my question above.



    Quote Originally Posted by OOO
    This is why I think the suggestion by Jace to automate the INP analysis is a good idea.


    What automation Jace referring to?

    See my quoted suggestion from another thread below on some INP analysis automation that can be done.

    Why not start include two most used versions of Wolfmame (106 and 183) and for the TOP KLOV 100 list of games. Once cannot automate all GAME ROMS but a descent subset will do.

    Quote Originally Posted by francoisadt
    https://www.twingalaxies.com/jace-hall/wall/8018/small-note-
    on-mame-adjudications#comments

    "I think we should have an auto validation feature build in TG back end for specific version of MAME.

    One cannot cater for all versions but the most used versions are : wolfmame 106, wolfmame 183 (CAG Tournaments) and on DK Forum more gamers move from wolfmame 106 to later versions, here then choose some newer version like one of wolmame 212 to 220+ (latest for now).

    Then at least validation can be done on the fly or some preliminary results can be done.

    For any other versions of wolfmame used, the gamer have to wait for manual verification.
    "
    Any comments on the above @Barthax , @Jace ?
    Updated 05-12-2020 at 10:45 PM by francoisadt
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