Daphne on Your Raspberry Pi 3

So Dragon’s Lair was definitely a top 3 favorite game of mine when I was a kid. I have the Daphne emulator on my full Windows PC HyperSpin setup, but now it is possible to play on RPI3!!! This guide will show you how to get it setup!

Here are a listed of confirmed working Daphne Games

  • ace Space Ace NTSC
  • ace_a Space Ace NTSC
  • ace_a2 Space Ace NTSC
  • ace91 Space Ace ’91
  • astron Astron Belt
  • astronp Astron Belt
  • cliff Cliff Hanger
  • cobraab Cobra Command
  • cobram3 Cobra Command
  • dle21 Dragon’s Lair Enhanced v2.1
  • eshalt Esh’s Aurunmilla
  • eshalt2 Esh’s Aurunmilla
  • galaxy Galaxy Ranger
  • interstellar Interstellar
  • lair Dragon’s Lair NTSC
  • lair2 Dragon’s Lair 2
  • mach3 A.C.H. 3
  • sae Space Ace Enhanced
  • sdq Super Don Quix-ote
  • tq Thayer’s Quest
  • uvt Us vs Them

Looking for an arcade cabinet for your RPI? Checkout the largest selection of cabinets on the web!  All of our control panel and bartop kits come with our RPI3 image where you simply flash on a 32gb microsd card and everything is plug and play!+

Getting the Files Setup Correctly

To get started go into the RetroPie Menu in EmulationStation and select RETROPIE_SETUP

With a keyboard go to option 4 for experimental packages

Daphne RetroPie Experimental Packages
Go to option 106 for the daphne emulator and press enter to install it

Daphne Retropie install
Once it installs (will take a few min) we will add the “Roms” or “Games” or “Framefiles” whatever you want to call them to simplify.

In this blog we will do Dragon’s Lair or “lair”, but all games will follow the same process. You can find a list of compatible games here 

The first thing you want to do is navigate to the Daphne roms folder on your RPI3. In your FTP program on your pc (usually winscp or filezilla) connect to your RPI3 by putting in the
IP address found in the retropie menu in emulationstation under option “Show Ip Address”
user: pi
password: raspberry
port: 22

Once connected navigate to /home/pi/RetroPie/roms/daphne
Daphne Retropie folder location
Inside you will see a roms folder place your lair.zip rom file in that folder

daphne retropie rom folder
Navigate back up a level to /home/pi/RetroPie/roms/daphne and create a new folder/directory and name it lair.daphne (For every game you will create a “rom name”.daphne folder)

Step 2 create lair daphne folder
Open the newly created folder and place your framefile or lair.txt and your video files or lair.m2v and lair.ogg (it will create the dat file after you run the game the first time)

daphne retropie daphne folder

IMPORTANT: Double check your lair.txt frame file as it is different than if you copied it from another installation. For Example mine had the following across 3 lines


151 lair.m2v

You need to delete the first line, but leave the 151 lair.m2v on the second line. If you do not it will not work properly.  You have to have two lines of code.

So it should look like (line 1 will be empty)

<!-- Line one will be blank, this text will not be here just that below this, you have to have two lines-->
151 lair.m2v

You will also want to open notepad and create a file called lair.commands not lair.commands.txt, make sure the file extension is .commands.  You can simply click and rename it after you save it.  In that file put the following code.  This is a good configuration, but if you want to customize your own here are all the parameters.

-nocrc -noissues -noserversend -latency 950 -x 640 -y 480 -bank 1 00110111 -bank 0 10011000

Save your new lair.commands file in the same lair.daphne folder

Now we are ready to test out it is configured correctly.  The game should boot but ask you to press a button to parse the file. Press any key and it will parse over a min or so. It only has to do this one time. After it is done parsing some games take 20 sec or so to boot so be patient.

Configuring Controls

Now that the game is booted we need to get the joystick/buttons configured for Daphne. We need to modify the control file.

Go to /opt/retropie/configs/daphne and open the dapinput.ini file

Step 3 configure daphne controls
The File uses Keycodes so it can be a bit confusing. For our XIN-Mo usb encoder you will want to simply mimmic the picture above or code below.

KEY_UP = 273 114 5
KEY_DOWN = 274 102 7
KEY_LEFT = 276 100 8
KEY_RIGHT = 275 103 6
KEY_BUTTON1 = 306 97 1
KEY_BUTTON2 = 308 115 2
KEY_BUTTON3 = 32 113 3
KEY_START1 = 49 0 7
KEY_START2 = 50 0 0
KEY_COIN1 = 53 0 8
KEY_COIN2 = 54 0 0
KEY_SKILL1 = 304 119 0
KEY_SKILL2 = 122 105 0
KEY_SKILL3 = 120 107 0
KEY_SERVICE = 57 0 0
KEY_TEST = 283 0 0
KEY_RESET = 284 0 0
KEY_QUIT = 27 113 9

Essentially the first couple numbers per line are the keycode and the last number is the joystick/buttons. You do not need to worry about the joysticks since the program auto-loads joystick 1. You will need to change the buttons to work how you wish. CAUTION: In other instances, the buttons will begin with 0 (zero), then 1, 2, 3, etc. In this case 0 (zero) means not used. So we need to start with button 1 which is normally button zero. You can see in the picture above that KEY_BUTTON1 is button 1 not zero so it correlated with our top left button in our joystick layout. Map the rest of your buttons including the start/coin/quit keys.

Once you have all your .daphne folders setup with the correct files you are all set. You just need to scrape the games to get images and data for them. See this blog in the game section to learn how to do that!

Hell Yes!!!! Dragons Lair on my bartop with RPI3!!!