NullDC, the Dreamcast emulator released with an open source license by its author after years of inactivity, remains a noteworthy example of what kind of results the community devoted to emulating the newest gaming machines can achieve. Although there is wide room for optimization and the implementation of still-lacking features, nullDC is a powerful engine which renders with ease - granted it run on a suitable hardware - several instances of the Sega console at the same time on a single PC.
During the past few days two important facts happened in the emulation world: DOSBox, the virtual machine that accurately replicates the PC world obsolete hardware has been updated with a new version release, while the Dreamcast emulator nullDC has found itself at a crossroad in its erratic history. Both cases concern software that are almost unique in their kind, and both the news are worth being told for the practical effects they have on the many fans using them.
MAME is surely one of the most active emulators out there. After more than 10 years since its first release the development work continues at a sustained pace, the coders contributing to the project are so many for they are Legion and almost every week there is an intermediate version (marked by the “u” suffix) before the next main release. Since January 2009, the month in which version 0.129u1 has been distributed with support for two new lasergames, in these days MAME has arrived to release 0.131 that, among the other things, shows some advancements in the emulation of a powerful 3D arcade system.
After nine months of waiting and the recent foray in the meanders of the technologically gifted (but maybe not enough) handhelds, nullDC returns on PC with version 1.0.3 released in these days. The plug-in based emulator that has renewed the glories of the Sega Dreamcast console, offering its most advanced and accurate emulation available by now, is for this time coupled with its arcade counterpart, that is the NAOMI system supposed to be impossible to emulate in the past years and now turned into the nth technological wall knocked down thanks to the work of drk||Raziel & fellows.
He has recently opened one of the most burning debates in the emulation scene and now drkIIRaziel, maker of the awarded Sega Dreamcast emulator nullDC, steps in to establish some steady points for his last adventure, namely the conversion of the above said software originally developed on PC, for the Sony PlayStation Portable console.
The news run fast, newbies begin to become excited and spread the happy tale: Sony PlayStation Portable is able to emulate the Sega Dreamcast! And the credit of this epochal event would go to the author of nullDC, an emulator that can already reproduce, with remarkable fidelity, the Japanese console on Wintel PCs. Obviously reality is very different, pretty unlikely nullDC will emulate Dreamcast on PSP and his author has ragged a great deal of gullible unable to reckon a bit before exalting themselves for nothing.