Dreamcast Fact Sheet
(Microsoft, don't you just love them?)
For licensed developers of games for the Sega Dreamcast home video game
system, the Microsoft® Windows® CE Toolkit for Dreamcast™ provides a flexible,
optimized development environment supported by Microsoft Visual C++ that
eases title development and provides true cross-platform compatibility
with Windows-based PCs.
The Windows CE Toolkit for Dreamcast brings the benefits of an advanced,
powerful, and flexible Windows development environment to the world of
console game development for the first time.
Use the same great Microsoft development tools available for Windows
The Windows CE Toolkit for Dreamcast allows Dreamcast developers to create
console games utilizing the productivity and convenience features of the
same powerful integrated development environment (IDE) used by Windows
developers. The development tools provided with the Dreamcast system's
Windows CE Software Development Kit (SDK) are built around Microsoft's
Visual Studio, with well-tested and refined VC++ based tools that, over
the course of their lengthy history, have been extensively tested, documented,
enhanced and refined, becoming one of the most powerful and feature rich
development environments available.
Develop in an environment optimized for console performance
Windows CE for Dreamcast has been hand-tuned to be small and fast to
provide superior performance specifically targeted at the Sega Dreamcast
hardware architecture. The operating system has been streamlined for size,
removing unnecessary services such as GUI and providing only those APIs
required for games. All parameter validation has been removed to reduce
overhead, all critical loops are coded in assembly, and SH-4 specific
features are utilized including vector/matrix instructions. In addition,
this version of DirectX for Windows CE has been specifically targeted
at, and optimized for, Dreamcast's hardware such as the PowerVR II, Yamaha
AICA audio subsystem, and Sega game controllers and modem.
Take advantage of operating system services and familiar, flexible
The Windows CE Toolkit for Dreamcast saves time on game development by
providing key services including input, sound, 3D graphics, as well as
memory and CD file management, dynamic linked libraries and multithread
synchronization. Built-in support for standard Internet protocols, Winsock
and DirectPlay facilitate taking advantage of Dreamcast's networking capabilities
for Internet access and networked multi-player gaming. Windows CE's modular
architecture allows flexibility in use of libraries and services. If a
developer wants to use his or her own proprietary set of libraries, a
driver development kit is available to allow substitution of custom components.
Develop games that are cross-platform compatible with the PC
Windows CE for Dreamcast allows developers to amortize rising development
costs by developing Dreamcast games that are source code compatible with
the PC. Using Windows CE, developers will be able to create cross-platform
titles more efficiently by taking advantage of well-established Win 32
and DirectX APIs that are source code compatible with the Windows operating
system on the PC. All Win32 and DirectX APIs are subsets of Windows NT,
Windows 95/98 and DirectX 5.0, making it relatively easy to port a Dreamcast
game to the Windows desktop platform and vice versa.
Core Windows CE Operating System Components
Kernel. Supports pre-emptive multi-tasking and multi-threading
with priority based scheduling. Manages system resources such as physical
and virtual memory, MMU, provides loader and service interrupts.
Communications. Supports a subset of the Windows Socket and RAS
APIs, providing TCP and UDP sockets and PPP dial-up.
File System. Provides access to Sega's CD-ROM, and designed for
maximum performance. ISO9660 Level 2 Compliant. Supports memory mapped
files and asynchronous I/O. Designed to allow the developer to fill the
CD-ROM pipeline for better streaming performance.
Minimal USER and GDI APIs. Support loading and copying bitmaps,
rendering text or DirectDraw surfaces, input and message handling, string
resource loading, and the Rectangle APIs. Other functions such as window
management and cursors have been eliminated.
Japanese Language Support. IMM/IME support available (game responsible
for providing user interface for accessing system level IME support.)
Persistent Storage API. Very light weight and block oriented new
API to manage NVRAM cards. Desktop version is also provided for emulation.
C-Runtime Library. Provides standard C utility functions, string
manipulation, Math, Exception handling, File I/O, and Memory allocation.
DirectDraw. Provides 2D graphics facilities, including video memory
management and palette management. Supports full-screen exclusive mode
Direct3D. Direct3D Immediate Mode supports transformation, lighting
and rendering of 3D graphics primitives
DirectSound. Supports digitized sound input and output. Interfaces
with Sega sound chip CPU to manage Dreamcast sound memory.
DirectPlay. Supports Internet and modem communications for multi-player
gaming. Provides APIs to enable sending and receiving messages, online
chatting and maintaining game state among all players.
DirectInput. Interfaces to Dreamcast game controllers.
DirectShow. Supports digital audio and video playback and synchronization.
MPEG1 encoded AVI playback is also supported.
Visual C++ 5.0. Works within Microsoft Visual Studio integrated
development environment (IDE) offering the ability to edit, compile, link,
execute and debug programs from within a single application.
Windows CE Toolkit for Visual C++ 5.0. Includes optimized SH-4
compiler and tool set.
Windows CE-DirectX SDK. Provides libraries, headers, runtimes,
samples & docs for building games.
SH-4 Compiler. Compile & debug within IDE. Optimized to exploit
SH-4 features. In-line assembler support and SH-4 assembler also provided.
Debugging support. Source-level, integrated VC++ debugger that
supports emulation on PC or remote debugging on target hardware. Provides
GUI and features of VC++ debugger.
Last Updated: 7/15/99
© 1999 Microsoft Corporation.
from Microsoft. Used without permission, so don't tell them, not that
they would really care anyway