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SMW Central Browser - an easy way to download, patch and run hacks

Tool



SMW Central Browser

Hey! Thanks for stopping by! Today, I bring you the SMW Central Browser!

What is this?

Depending on your perspective, this can be several. Mostly, it's a handy tool to browser and search for SMW hacks on SMW Central. This tool allows you to browse through all SMW hacks submissions, search with specific filters, lets you download and patch your SMW SFC file and launches the patched ROM with your favorite emulator!

From another perspective, a part of this project is a crawler (for the submission table-like pages as of right now), which allows you to interact with the submissions in a more developer friendly way. Maybe you want to build your own browser, then this is for you as well!

This project was mainly created with the Steam Deck in mind, but should work on any platform, that supports Python!

Screenshots

SMW Central Browser main screen SMW Central Browser main screen


SMW Central Browser filter screen SMW Central Browser filter screen


Install
There are two ways for you to install this. You can download precompiled binaries or clone this repo and run it from the source code!

Precompiled binaries
You can get the latest precompiled binaries from the releases section of the GitHub project by following the link below. Just download them and execute them! It's nearly that easy!



Run from source
If you prefer to run the program from the source, you should check out the projects GitHub page.

Future ideas

In order of significance:
— Wrapper and screen for hack entry site
— Wrapper for hack screenshots and display in browser
— Save filter parameter
— File browser for unzipped hack, if there are multiple patch files
— Should include an option to show all files and apply them as patches if the user wishes so
— Maybe a way to delete downloaded hacks from the library?
— Support for SMW2:YI and SM64
— Settings screen
— Argument to disable checksum check
— Language support
— Constructive criticism and ideas for improvements are also always welcome!

Wanna help?
This project is entirely done in my free time next to my full time job. Soon, I'll write my bachelor thesis and will have much less time for this project. So, if you wanna contribute and help with any feature, you're welcome! We need tests, bug fixes and new features would be nice as well. I much appreciate your consideration!

More information can be found on the GitHub page of this project!
Neat, you likely missed this as it was just announced, but there is a new public API which should alleviate having to rely on HTML parsing/crawling.
Originally posted by AmperSam
Neat, you likely missed this as it was just announced, but there is a new public API which should alleviate having to rely on HTML parsing/crawling.


Ayy, that's awesome! That will make a bunch of things much easier. I'll implement it right away. That also makes support for Yoshis Island and SM64 much easier #tb{:D}
Hey, I found a few issues that I reported on the GitHub page, but this is a neat project!

Also, a few suggestions, in order of importance:

  1. Display better error messages, both on startup if the configuration is not valid, and in the app (e.g., when trying to launch a hack with no valid emulator configured)
  2. Add a visual indicator whether a hack has already been downloaded or not
  3. Add a filter showing only the hacks that I already downloaded
  4. Allow to filter with multiple combinations of hack types (e.g., "Kaizo: Intermediate" AND "Kaizo: Standard"), this makes sense since a hack can have more than one type (such hacks produce warnings in the shell after a filter has been applied)

In general, I would handle downloaded hacks separately from the SMW Central's catalogue, so that hacks won't disappear from the list if they are somehow removed from the website (or if they are renamed). However, I understand it might be a design choice to have the list of hacks matching exactly the one online.

If you need someone to make a macOS build, feel free to DM me.
ROM Hack Manager - SMW Resources - SMW Toolbox
Originally posted by zuccha
Hey, I found a few issues that I reported on the GitHub page, but this is a neat project!

Also, a few suggestions, in order of importance:

  1. Display better error messages, both on startup if the configuration is not valid, and in the app (e.g., when trying to launch a hack with no valid emulator configured)
  2. Add a visual indicator whether a hack has already been downloaded or not
  3. Add a filter showing only the hacks that I already downloaded
  4. Allow to filter with multiple combinations of hack types (e.g., "Kaizo: Intermediate" AND "Kaizo: Standard"), this makes sense since a hack can have more than one type (such hacks produce warnings in the shell after a filter has been applied)

In general, I would handle downloaded hacks separately from the SMW Central's catalogue, so that hacks won't disappear from the list if they are somehow removed from the website (or if they are renamed). However, I understand it might be a design choice to have the list of hacks matching exactly the one online.

If you need someone to make a macOS build, feel free to DM me.


Ayy, thank you very much for testing my app! I like your ideas with the visual indicator, if a hack is already download and the already downloaded filter! Ill reach out to you for the macOS build :)

Tool