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  • Interview with Gollum the BOYcott author

    > 1) What inspired you to make BOYcott?

    Well, I discovered the emulation scene two years ago. I already knew
    Amstrad or Amiga emus but I couldn't imagine
    that emulators exist for videogame consoles. I was amazed by Virtual
    Gameboy and Massage, emulators for the two
    consoles I own (a Gameboy and a Master System Model I). Great speed
    (they ran quite at full frame on my old 486 Dx2 66),
    cool improvements compared to the original device (savegames,
    configurations and the like) and good sound !
    I decided to start a general emulation site: Emu5ever, dedicated to my
    quite unknown french engineering school, which will
    cover all these amazing emulators from all over the world...
    Last year, two friends of me told me about their programming project:
    make an emulator.
    I join their project and we decided to start with a Gameboy emu since it
    seemed to be easy to emulate (Z80, few colours,
    low speed...). Actually, we were two coders and another guy will do the
    optimizations and BeOS port. I suggested a funny name:
    why not Boycott ?
    Finally, since I was progressing faster and better, I started to work
    alone and Boycott became the Emu5ever leading project.

    My best inspiration was Virtual Gameboy since it was written in C which
    means that such an emu would be easily portable.

    > 2) What was your Friends/Family/IDSA comments about BOYcott?

    My friends and guys of my school were happy to play Gameboy on our
    Dec-Alpha workstations (DEC OSF-1 port of Boycott).
    I always have many ideas from people, advices or simply they wanted to
    know about my progresses.

    My family has not yet realized what is exactly an emulator so...

    IDSA ? Er... I live in France, I released Boycott on our web school.
    I never receive or have any complaints from Nintendo or mails from the

    > 3) What was the hardest part in BOYcott to make?

    Debugging the Z80 core (for instance, I spent two weeks for a silly

    > 4) What is planned for future versions?

    Many thing since frEk, an australian coder has joined the project.
    - Gameboy Link emulation
    - IPX/SPX, TCP-IP, SERIAL support
    - A great GUI
    - Better sound support (it is the crappiest GB sound I ever heard... ;-)
    - Optimizations (until it runs at full frame on my old 486 Dx2 66 but
    without any assembly at all (despite some VGB ports) !)
    - Open Source Project ?
    - Full SGB/CGB support
    - and the like...

    > 5) What does BOYcott emulates the best?

    Er... There are too many improvements left to say that it emulates
    something at its best...

    > 6) Any ideas about NEScott/SNEScott/GENcott?

    I already started NEScott and MAScott but I need more time to work on
    I work quite a lot on PCott, a PC emulator for MsDos (but it is portable
    too...), I think I will continue this project but
    I will restart from scratch as I have many new ideas...

    > 7) What was the best/worse feedback you got on BOYcott

    Best feedback ?
    - people who wanted to port Boycott to other platforms (just try Boycott
    Mac by Richard Bannister, it rocks !)
    - mails with congratulations and/or admiration for Boycott stuff
    - people who want to write a GB emu and ask me for many advices

    Worse feedback ?
    - people claims for a boycott version that supports Pokemon Blue (and
    they forgot to download the lastest release...)
    - people who want to write a GB emu and are beginners in C and in coding
    in general so they ask silly questions

    > 8) What do you fell about other Gameboy emulators and their autors?

    They were only a few Gameboy emulators at the beginning.
    VGB portable, quite compatible and rather fast and with very good sound,
    GB97 a faster assembly of VGB.
    Then Boycott, my attempt to make another portable and cool free emulator
    since VGB Dos was discontinued.
    The excellent No$Gmb, the fastest and best for debugging features.
    Crappy sound but better than mine... ;-)

    And then suddenly a bunch of new GB emus, using Windows, DirectX and
    often in japanese...
    The only thing I can tell is that even me, I cannot choose between all
    these GB emus !

    All Gameboy emulators authors seem to be quite friendly !
    I often exchange words with some emulator authors and general emulation
    site mainteners.
    Even the author of No$Gmb send me some docs !

    > 9) Will BOYcott have a GUI?

    Yes, I hope. frEk has started to work on it. I hope to see it working
    soon !

    > 10) Give the BOYcott users some info about yourself

    I am 22.
    I am french but I don't eat frog legs all days. ;-)
    I like coding and especially emulation stuff !
    I own two consoles : a Gameboy (Boycott) and a Master System (Mascott
    but with the success of Meka, forgive it).
    It is my last student year, I may soon work or go to the army (beuark
    I am currently working with a college computer-science and electronic
    laboratory as an internship.
    You know what ? This internship deals with... EMULATION !

    > 11) why the name BOYcott?

    Because I was looking for a funny game for a Gameboy emu.
    I was looking for a cool name.
    A boycott is a real english name and it is quite good for an emulator name.
    Then I kept the cott for all the next cotteries...
    Mascott is quite similar to the french word mascotte
    But there are also NEScott,PCott,MASCott,HPCott,Cott64,PSXCott...

    > 12) How many time you spent on Boycott and/or Emu5ever.

    Last year :
    - Emu5ever = 2-3 hours a day
    - Boycott = 1-2 hour a day
    - Emulation Scene = 4 hours a day (mail, news...)
    - Studying = 6-8 hours a day
    - Pcott = only one full weekend to get something to work !!!

    Coding :
    - first Z80 core : two weeks
    - gfx : one afternoon
    - debugging : two months
    - improvements : since dec 97

    This year :
    - Emu5ever = 1-2 hour a week
    - Boycott = 1-2 hour a month (I count on frEk help)
    - Internship = 8-10 hours a day
    - Emulation Scene = 2 hours a day (mail, news, downloads...)
    - Pcott = no time

    I must have forgotten my girlfriend in this planning... ;-)

    > 13) What do you think of this interview?
    Interesting, short, clear.