GoldenEye Multiplayer on Nintendo 64 / N64
N64 Emulator and Perfect Dark FAQ - Guide - Everything You Need To Know
What do I need to play Perfect Dark online?
You can play Perfect Dark Nintendo 64 on Xbox Live Arcade or you can play online using a PC emulator (software that simulates the actual Nintendo 64 console).
Is there an advantage to the Xbox Live Arcade Version over using an emulator?
Perfect Dark XBLA has one huge advantage. That is single screen multiplayer online. In addition, Perfect Dark XBLA has a matchmaking system along with the ability to play custom game setups with friends. The framerate is consistent using the Xbox 360 and it claims to be 1080p resolution.
Are there an disadvantages to Perfect Dark N64 on the Xbox 360 vs. an emulator?
First, you are using the Xbox 360 controller and not the original Nintendo 64 controller for which the game was designed with. There are some advanced controller settings, but you are still limited to what you get. Dual stick fans will be happy with this. Those folks claim that the aiming is superior. I'm not so sure of that.
Only the hardcore Perfect Dark N64 players will notice, but there are some slight variances. The reason for these variances comes down to the fact that the Xbox Live Arcade version is not a direct port of the original game. As Ken Lobb from Microsoft said, the game was built from the ground up. You will notice crates or weapons cannot be shot out of position. You will notice slight variances in splash damage from weapons like the Phoenix. It's more deadly on the Xbox Live Arcade version. There is also slight differences in explosive residuals. They tend to dissapate quicker on the Xbox version than the original.
What is a Nintendo 64 emulator?
It is a program that makes your PC the Nintendo 64 console. There are many N64 emulators, but Mupen64k and Mupen64++ are the only ones with impressive online ability.
Is an emulator better than the actual N64 console?
Yes it is. In fact, you will be blown away at the details in Perfect Dark that you missed because you were playing on a TV and not on a computer monitor. Beyond that, if you lined out your PC video to a television while playing Perfect Dark on an emulator, you will be amazed at the better clarity, especially across large areas like in the Temple. Framerate is another thing. Processing power of a PC can do things that your Nintendo 64 console can't. In a sense, you can get an emulator to perfect Perfect Dark at a 1080p resolution on your HDTV. You can remove a lot of the jaggies, but you should have a decent computer so that it doesn't reduce the game framerate.
Here are a few screenshots from Perfect Dark via emulator:
How good of a computer do I need for N64 Emulators?
1 GB of ram minimum. Go to Control Panel > System and it will tell you there how much you have. How about the rest of your computer? Almost an impossible question to answer. You need to test and fiddle around to see if your computer can play Perfect Dark. My system plays it as fast as imaginable and my computer isn't new. I have a 3200+ AMD Athlon XP, 1.5 gigs ram, and an ATI All in Wonder 800XL. Just try to run it on your computer and see what happens is my best advice.
What type of controls can I use playing N64 Perfect Dark on an emulator?
How about the authentic Nintendo 64 controller? Yes, it is true. Buy a USB adapter. Aside from that you can use a mouse/keyboard setup just like a regular FPS, however this is not the proper way of playing Perfect Dark. Right? Perfect Dark deserves to be played like it was intended. Having said this, you can configure practically any controller you own to play Perfect Dark on the PC.
What are ROMS and aren't they illegal?
An emulator needs a Perfect Dark ROM to play. It's like an Mp3 player needing Mp3 files to play. Read this here about legalities. A ROM (a backup of your actual Perfect Dark cartridge) can be made using a Gameshark Pro with a working parallel port hooked up to your PC. Is that illegal? Not sure. You can make Mp3s from your cd's right so is that different? I'm not sure. To me, it's my game and I can play it on console or on the PC now. It isn't somebody else's game that I'm using.
What are plugins?
These are files that tell the N64 emulator how to handle graphics (called video plugin), audio (called audio plugin), and input configuration (input plugin). There are many different authors out there for plugins and there is also a wide range of quality. That means, you can test many different plugins for each aspect of emulation. That is video, sound, and input. This is where emulation gets complicated. You have to copy and paste these plugins (usually consisting of only one .dll file) into your emulators plugin folder. Once you have added them into your emulator plugin directory, you are able to simply select and change plugins using an emulators settings menu. That is the easy part!!
Adding to the plugin complication is the fact that there are many different releases or versions of the same plugin. So, take Jabo's video plugin. Just because it's Jabo's video plugin, you need to know which of the 4 or 5 different versions it is. Confused yet? Bringing this explanation into the N64 Perfect Dark online subject, you need to be running the same plugins as all of your opponents or likely problems will arise! IMPORTANT: You need to know what plugins and what versions you are using and ensure your opponents online are using the same!
Can I play online with Anisotropic Filtering on?
This is an option in Jabo's Video Plugin and will likely cause a desynch with online gameplay. Sure it makes the game look very pretty, but it will cause problems. So, keep the setting to OFF.
Can I play online using full screen or with a large windowed resolution?
Yes you can play at full screen, although I would strongly recommend a size of 800x400 out of respect for the other players. If your system can't play fast at the full screen resolution, the online performance for everyone will suffer. Large windowed resolution of 1024 or 800 max is what I recommend for the reasons stated earlier. Be considerate of the other players!
Can I still use Mirc or instant messaging while playing N64 Perfect Dark online?
Yes, these programs use very little system resources and will not cause problems for you playing online.
How do I send a text message to my opponents when I'm playing Perfect Dark Online?
Ctrl-M and then type your message, which will appear in the lower left corner of the window.
PD N64 Game - Perfect Dark - Play N64 Classic Online with Mupen64K
Playing Perfect Dark Online - Everything You Need To Know
Update - You've found the #1 online Perfect Dark community! If you want to play Perfect Dark online, we're here to help. I've been a fan of the Nintendo 64 version of Perfect Dark since it came out and have play multiplayer extensively. To play Perfect Dark online, you have two options:
So which method do I recommend? Personally, as a traditionalist, I prefer the Perfect Dark on PC. The online gameplay may lack the solidness of Perfect Dark XBLA but for me, the original N64 controller and engine feels right. I think it's worth you while to buy the USB adapters and even get a couple used N64 original controllers to make it the full experience. Once you've done that, you can even enjoy some incredible GoldenEye N64 gaming which I'm sure you are familiar with also.
IMPORTANT: The tutorial on this page is now OUTDATED. I recommend that you visit here for the most updated emulator downloads. Also the tutorial is more updated on that site currently. That link will take you to the GoldenEye tutorial, but the setup/instructions are the same. Go there, follow the simple tutorial and start playing Perfect Dark online. Good luck!
Update - Another release of Mupen64K! The links here have been updated. Enjoy even better online play, especially with Perfect Dark!
Update - Yes for the first time in history, you can now play N64 Perfect Dark online. It is glitch free and you simply will be amazed at how good it performs. Having said that, unless you follow these steps you likely will encounter desynch problems when you play online. What is desynch? Well this is when the game basically splits into two and your opponent is playing a different game. You know you have desynched (aka ds) when your opponent is slapping at the air and running into walls.
This isn't complicated, but you must understand that all players in an online Perfect Dark game need to be set up EXACTLY the same. Not everything, but most settings need to be the same in order to play flawlessly online. Got it? Good.
To properly follow this tutorial, you don't need to be an expert. If you know how to navigate your hard drive, extract a zip file, and cut/ paste files, then you should have no problem. You also need a bit of patience to set this up. If you can't take 15 minutes to set this up then stop now!
Having problems? Are you a emulator N00b? No problem!
** IMPORTANT **
Quick links for expanded "essentials" tutorials:
If you don't have high speed internet then you will not bother with the remaining steps! Sorry to say, but at least I warned you before attempting online play with dial up internet. The speed of your internet connection in PING and <100 is ideal for playing Perfect Dark online. I am usually at 78, and I have played a player with 107 and the game was running perfectly. So the larger distance between players means the Ping (lag) goes up.
This is the first emulator in history to run Perfect Dark online! Unzip the files on your computer, but first name a folder and make sure you can find it later!
Perfect Dark is a challenge for emulators. There are graphical elements that are not easily duplicated on PC. The lens effect in things like the camspy and slayer rocket are not proper using this plugin. Having said that, this is your best option for PD N64. Trust me on this one. If a better option comes available, I will make an announcement.
This video plugin is part of the Project 64 1.6 emulator package. If you don't have Project 64 1.6, then you will need to first download and then install it. It is a great great emulator, but it lacks online capability. Use it when not playing perfect dark N64 online. After installing, follow these instructions to get the proper video plugin for Mupen64K.
This is a newer version input plugin than what is in the Mupen64K package. I recommend using this one especially if you are going to be using a mouse/keyboard setup. Shame on you for using a mouse/keyboard! Well, you can still order the USB adapters and use the legit Nintendo 64 controllers.
So you want to play perfect dark N64 without the official Nintendo 64 controller? Shame on you! Buy the USB adapter which allows you to hook up your original controllers to the PC. They aren't that expensive. I have 4 of them! If you don't have an original controller, Nintendo sells the original grey Nintendo 64 controllers here. Having said this, you likely don't want to wait for the USB adapter to arrive in the mail before trying this out. So, you can set up the emulator to play Perfect Dark with a mouse and keyboard. Again, shame on you! To learn how to set up the keyboard and mouse, check this link here and here. To use the USB adapters properly, follow my guide here. Again, you can use any joystick/controller that you have handy. Just configure it smartly....keep reading!
This is the settings window for N-Rage's input plugin. Regardless of what input plugin you use, the interface is very similar. Notice where I have the red box around the check mark. If you only have one controller and want to still see multiplayer in perfect dark N64, then simply check the box beside "Controller 2". That will allow one controller to control both players in the game. If you don't have 2 controllers indicated here, the Perfect Dark game won't even make multiplayer selectable.
From here, you want to click on the "Assign Keys" button. The screenshot below is is the "Assign Keys" window for N-Rages input plugin. Like any other controller configuration, you click on the buttons ( highlighted with a red box ) and then you press the button on your controller that you want to use. This should be simple to do. I highlighted the DeadZone setting because if you are using a real N64 controller, then you want to have this setting similar to what I've done here. The highlighted drop down menu lets you select whatever controllers that are recognized by Windows operating system as being installed. Also note the "Load Profile" button. If you are using a keyboard/mouse setup you can find configuration files from people that you can download, then load here. Saves time and hassle.
You need Mupen64K to find your Perfect Dark ROM. To do this, follow this screenshot:
This is the most critical aspect of online Perfect Dark. Your ROM MD5 identification has to be a match of your opponents. Yes, every opponent in the game. To verify your MD5 identifier, follow what I've done in these screenshots. Yes, just ignore GoldenEye 007. Yours should read Perfect Dark (U) (V1.1) [!]
Look at the screenshot below. In order to find your MD5 Checksum, you will have to first click on the button that reads "Calculate". You can then copy that information to verify what your opponents are using.
You need to establish whether or not your PC can run Perfect Dark at a playable speed. I could list some recommended PC requirements, but when you realize the variety of video cards, processors and ram combinations, there is only one solution. TEST IT OUT! Do this before you head online because if you are slow, then the entire game for everyone online will be slow. Basically with Perfect Dark online, the framerate is as fast as the slowest computer in the game. Check your video plugin settings like this:
Here is Jabos 3D8 1.6 Video Plugin settings below. Please note that all the fancy option like "Anisotropic filtering" is set to OFF. Very important! Do it before you go online or you will experience desynch. Also note "Windowed Resolution" which will make the game window small, but will make it play faster. Start small like I have here, or even smaller depending on how your PC plays Mupen64K. Don't go for big because chances are the online game will be slow and frustrating for everyone involved. Try 800x600 like I've done here.
** An important configuration setting that you will need to make is in the screenshot below. Start perfect dark N64 first! You will need to have perfect dark N64 playing to be able to enter "Rom Settings". From this screenshot, you can see that you need to set the Direct3D Clear Mode to ALWAYS. This fixes the runny sky glitch which you will notice as you look to the top of a level where there is an opening.
Step 2: How to play perfect dark N64 Online
Before you go online to play, ensure the following plugins are selected:
This is it. Use the screenshot below and verify that you are using these plugins BEFORE looking for games online. Just trust me on this one okay?
Now you are ready to play online! Open Mupen64K and go to Utilities > Kaillera. As you see in this screenshot below, you can select either Kaillera (a newer interface) or the Old Kaillera (older interface). I have chosen to show you Old Kaillera, but it makes no difference which one you use.
After opening Old Kaillera from the previous screenshot, you will see this window open (see screenshot below). From here there are 2 important elements. First, don't change the "Connection type", leave it as the default. If you change this you will have to find players who have changed theirs to the same type. It doesn't speed up your connection if you select a different connection type. As a default, you will find that 99% of the other players have this set to Good (20 keyframes/s). Leave it alone! Second, you need to pick a server to play on. There is ONE place where all the Perfect Dark players need to go. So, click on the "Enter IP" button and enter this address:
If you are looking for Perfect Dark games, then use that IP address. It is the place to be!
After you enter the IP Address and click on the "Connect" button in Kaillera, you will be viewing this window (see screenshot below). Some explanation needed.
First, "Game" listings, you are looking for Perfect Dark, obviously. At the time of the screenshot there weren't any games for me to show you. Next is the "Version". This is important because you need to find a Perfect Dark game that is using Mupen64K. Just check what version first before joining up with a game that you won't be able to play in. Players out there are still learning that Mupen64K is THE emulator to run Perfect Dark. You will still find people using Project64K to play Perfect Dark. And no, it doesn't play properly! The last point is "Status", which means unless it says waiting, you won't be able to join in the game. You also have the option of choosing "Create new game" from which you can select Perfect Dark from your list of games, and then you will have an actual game room created. You will wait there and chat will people until you decide to start the game.
Good luck with Perfect Dark online! See you there.
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