Alien vs Predator
Image: Atari

Ever since releasing the Atari Jaguar emulator BigPEmu last December, the programmer Rich Whitehouse has been hard at work adding a bunch of new features to the software to improve its capabilities. This includes introducing Jaguar CD support in V1.05, VR compatibility in V1.07, and networking with Jaglink in V1.08. The latest update (V1.09) launched only yesterday (September 17th) continues this grand tradition, bringing with it two new methods of networking with friends: State-Sync and Script mode.

As Whitehouse explains in a video going over the brand new features included in this patch, State-Sync is a fairly standard emulator approach to networking that essentially makes sure each peer has the state synchronized with one another, before feeding the inputs from there. Meanwhile, Script mode is a little more advanced and allows users to program and implement their own net code to play together. To demonstrate this, Whitehouse has added up to 32-person multiplayer support to Rebellion's 1994 first-person shooter Alien vs Predator — a game that previously didn't have any form of multiplayer at all.

Whitehouse admits he hasn't so far attempted to test over 30 clients in a single instance, but gave an example of two-player split-screen gameplay up and running. It looks incredibly impressive from what we can see, though the programmer has warned players to "expect bugs" considering the game was never designed for multiplayer to begin with.

You can grab the latest version of the emulator (version 1.09) here. Whitehouse also has a Patreon, should you want to support his work directly.

[source, via]