Advanced Detector

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Advanced Detector

If your engine supports a large number of games, or variants then detecting them can be tricky.

As some of the game variants will have files with the same name, but differing contents, detection by filename alone is not sufficient, and a fair number of variants may only differ by small sections of data within the entire file, so opening the file and looking for a "magic header" is not reliable either.
So instead you will take a checksum or even better a hash of the file to detect the exact version, then you will need to write this code to open the files and run this check into your custom MetaEngine...

Sounds like a lot of work?
Well to avoid every engine author having to do this themselves (and the codebase ending up with the maintenance headache of 20+ implementations of this which are almost, but not exactly the same!), the ScummVM Infrastructure Team have provided the Advanced Detector!
This provides a standard framework for filename and MD5 based game detection.

The code for this can be found in engines/advancedDetector.*

To use this, you will have to follow the instructions here, but you will subclass AdvancedMetaEngine instead within your engine's detection.h and detection.cpp.

All you will have to provide is a standard data table of ADGameDescription entries describing each game variant, which is usually placed in a separate detection_tables.h header, which is included in detection.cpp for use there.

This structure plus other parameters are passed to the AdvancedMetaEngine constructor, which can also contain overrides of the default parameters for detection e.g. _md5Bytes is the number of bytes used for the MD5 hash for each file, etc.

It is suggested you consult the code and header comments in engines/advancedDetector.* and look at the examples provided by current engines for a more complete example.