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Re: Game console devel under Linux

On Sunday 13 January 2002  3:56 pm, you wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 13, 2002 at 01:45:11PM +0000, Adam D. Moss wrote:
> > Hi!
> >
> > Is anyone here using Linux as their preferred development
> > platform for (in decreasing order of interest) PS2, Gamecube,
> > XBox, PSX or Dreamcast?
> I am in the early days of looking into PS2 development under Linux myself.
> There are two sourceforge projects devoted to this subject.
> PS2 Dev		- http://ps2dev.sourceforge.net/
> PS2 Hacking	- http://ps2hacking.sourceforge.net/
> Both have mailing lists which currently have fairly lively discusions
> on various issues.

It's all good and well having the compiler and stuff, but all the 
documentation is under a very strict NDA with Sony, so finding out how to do 
stuff with it is gonna be a pain...

(DISCLAIMER: I am under NDA with Sony, so you won't get any details from me)

> > Does anyone have experience of development for these platforms
> > (on Linux or not) and wish to share some tips on unexpected
> > (ie. not speed-related) considerations/limitations/strengths
> > of these platforms in relation to a Linux PC with a low-frills
> > 3D card?

Apart from the Xbox, it can't be done "with a low-frills 3D card" on a PC. 
Both GameCube and PS2 use propietry hardware, so things just won't work too 

The CPU instructions sets are very different to the x86 set, so things just 
won't work. (GC uses the IBM PPC chip, granted, but a sooper seekrit vector 

> > I'll tell you why I ask -- I'm currently in the early stages
> > of technical and production design on a pitch for backing for
> > a commercial title and I wish to stick with Linux/GCC as my
> > preferred development environment.  (Currently also OpenGL for
> > transformation and rendering and SDL for input and display
> > initialisation, but those parts are fairly well-isolated in the
> > code.)
> >
> > So, how are the console SDKs to work with in general and how well
> > is console development supported under Linux (either via official
> > SDKs or 'guerilla' to-the-metal docs)?  What are the legal
> > implications of /not/ using the official SDKs?

Depends where you are in the world. Back in the days of the SNES and 
Magadrive, CodeMasters decided to forego official licensing and won in the 
courts, so there is precidence in the UK for doing things unofficially. It's 
also why mod chips are perfectly legal.

However, in the US, you have a lil' thing called the DCMA preventing you from 
reverse engineering the DRM stuff.

> My interest is in trying to develop for the PS2 without using the official
> SDKs, though whether this can be achieved legally remains to be seen.
> As far as I am aware, the community does not currently have sufficient
> knowledge to drive the 3D hardware without the SDK.

You're right.

Mark 'Nurgle' Collins
Lead Author - Linux Game Programming (Premiere Press)
Author - Advanced AI Game Development (WordWare)
Email: me@thisisnurgle.org.uk	Phone: +44 7761 774 152
Email: nurgle@isyourgod.net	Spam: spam@thisisnurgle.org.uk