A new version of Stella, an Atari 2600 emulator, is now available. Here is what is new in this version:
- Added integrated GUI. Stella is now a fully graphical application, and all settings can be changed dynamically while the application is running. That means the commandline is no longer required (but support is still there for those who want to use it).
- Added ROM launcher. You can now exit a game and start playing another one from directly within Stella (you no longer have to quit Stella and restart it).
- Because of the integrated GUI and ROM launcher, StellaX and KStella (the Windows and Linux frontends) have been discontinued. The OSX port now uses the launcher as well.
- Added an integrated debugger for game developers. This is currently the first version of a debugger in Stella, but it's already quite usable.
- Added new sound subsystem, which is much faster and more accurate. Related to this, added stereo sound output (used by some homebrew games).
- Added ZIP support. Stella can now open ROM's compressed in zip format.
- Added cartridge 'frying', thanks to Fred "batari" Quimby. This emulates the action of turning the power button on and off on a real Atari, often resulting in some strange effects.
- Added ability to edit current ROM properties from directly within Stella, which can then be saved directly into the 'user.pro' file. So creating a properties entry for a new ROM can be done without any external tools.
- Added initial support for using Stella in an 'arcade-box' environment without a keyboard. This consists of an in-game menu for choosing common actions in Stella, as well as using the joystick navigate the mouse pointer.
- Reworked properties system to use both a system-wide 'stella.pro' and a per-user 'user.pro' properties files. Changes made by the user and stored in 'user.pro' are no longer erased when upgrading Stella.
- Added support for cartridges with 3E bankswitching format.
- Added preliminary Cheat support.
- Added Alt/Shift-Cmd z, x, c, v, b, n keys to enable/disable the P0, P1, M0, M1, BL, PL bits in the TIA, respectively.
- Added Alt/Shift-Cmd . key to disable all bits in the TIA.
- Added Alt/Shift-Cmd / key to enable all bits in the TIA.
- Added Alt/Shift-Cmd g key to switch dynamically switch between software and OpenGL modes while Stella is running.
- Added Ctrl/Cmd r key to reload the ROM currently being emulated.
- Added Alt/Shift-Cmd s key to merge the current game properties into the properties file.
- Added help commandline argument. Launching Stella from the commandline with no options now starts Stella in ROM launcher mode, instead of showing help (as in previous versions).
- Added the following commandline arguments for developers: pro, type, ld, rd, tv, lc, rc, bc, format, xstart, ystart, width height, cpu, hmove. Developers can consult the manual for further details.
- Removed mergeprops commandline argument, since there are now dedicated keys to either save or merge game properties.
- Removed hidecursor commandline argument. Stella will now automatically decide when to use this setting.
- Fixed framerate when switching between NTSC and PAL modes. Stella now uses the correct framerate based on the format of the ROM, in terms of both video and audio.
- Added 'configure' support to the build process for both Linux and Win32 (using MinGW). Developers can now use the familiar 'configure; make; make install' commands to compile Stella.
- Further consolidation and integration of SDL. This should lead to faster operation and a more consistent look for all ports.
- Fixed some 64-bit issues. Stella now compiles and runs correctly on AMD64 and PPC64 Linux systems.
- Updated the Stella manual with pictures of the new integrated GUI.