Already a SMAR•CADE user? This will update your version 2.2f install to the current version. (Version 2.2g)
Prototype users, rejoice! This patch will fix some major bugs that have arisen recently in the retired prototype.
The source code of the Steam version of Anarchy Arcade is a completely different branch than the prototype, so going back to update the prototype is not something I do very lightly. However, the way that the prototype was designed (in a quick & rugged fashion) makes it susceptible to serious bugs if a web server it depends on changes its address or functionality.
In contrast, the Steam version of Anarchy Arcade is resistant to these types of follies. It has superior error handling that minimizes the effect of any problems that DO occur, and it implements all web server logic as add-on scripts that can be easily swapped out or updated when needed.
One issue with the prototype is that some of the web server scrapers, such as the Steam games info scraper, are hard-coded into the executable. This means that when they do break, it requires a major client update that everybody has to manually download & install. That's why this maintenance update is required today; Steam changed the address of the server used for game header images & screenshots. As a result, the prototype got confused and made it nearly impossible to launch your Steam games at all. This maintenance update resolves the Steam images issue.
Ideally, the Steam image server changing its address shouldn't have stopped you from being able to launch your cabinets, but unfortunately this was the case in the prototype. Again, this folly was due to the quick & rugged fashion that the prototype was developed in. The prototype has little to no error-handling, meaning that if something goes wrong, it ALL goes wrong. This is another area that the Steam version of Anarchy Arcade excels in.
The Steam version's error handling is prepared for all sorts of failures at any stage of the process because it is designed for user-created addon scripts. Not only can it handle errors, but it also filters out any malicious commands that an evil user might try to take advantage of. It is able to detect problems and use fallback settings so that you'll always be able to at least get a default shortcut to your file spawned in your arcade, even if all hell breaks loose.
The prototype's issue with Netflix was due in part to the poor error handling, but was also due to an incompatibility with an all-new image format that is emerging on the internet. The new format is developed by Google and called WebP. It is actually superior than many other popular image formats in its optimization and compression, which makes it ideal for mobile-ready websites.
The problem is that Google's competitors are naturally apprehensive to add support for an image format that is controlled by Google. This means that pretty much the only browser that supports the WebP image format at this time is Google's own web browser, Chrome, and the framework it is based on.
Once again, this is a problem that only affects the prototype. To patch it, this maintainance update no longer tries to use the WebP DVD covers from Netflix. It tries to find a DVD cover from TheMovieDb to use instead. In the Steam version of Anarchy Arcade, the WebP image format will actually be fully supported, but it will still grab good ol' JPEG DVD covers from TheMovieDb so that your cabinets will be easier to share with your friends in standard web browsers.
The prototype's issue with Hulu is right along the same lines as the Steam images issue; the web address to embed Hulu videos changed and caused the in-game playback of them to fail. This one was easy to fix in the prototype, I just had to update the address in the Hulu scraper. When you spawn new Hulu videos, they will now be visible on the in-game screens when you select them; just like before.
Some multi-system emulators require you to pass them a game TYPE for them to be able to automatically load your game. This functionality has been added to the prototype and allows for complex emulators that require this launch command parameter, such as MESS, to be function with the prototype. If you're one of the people who like to create your own emulator scripts for the prototype, the keyword for this new command line parameter is $TYPE. Just include that in your launch commands where ever you want the TYPE of the item to be inserted.
As always, development on the Steam version of Anarchy Arcade continues. If you need to catch up on some of the most recent news, you can check out this article on how plugins work in the Steam version. You can also follow @AnarchyArcade on Twitter to be notified of all news such as updates, live streams, or just random fun.
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