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Up until now we have used the "5=mame" approach to make a game list in Lazarus.  There is actually a much better filter system available to you. 

First lets open up the old dirs.ini file again.  Every time you want to add a new list you need to make a new path entry like this:

caption=Newest Games

Don't add any blank lines and be sure to put your new entry inside the startvd entry with your main entry.  Each path entry represents a single "virtual directory" which is a single game list within Lazarus.  What we are concerned with is the "searchstrings:" line.  The search strings line can have an infinite number of variables added for Lazarus to search for delimited by a ";" If you need to search for part of a string you can use wildcards.  For example, to search for all fighters instead of a particular type of fighter, you can use "6=fighter*" instead of adding each sublist manually.  For a list of adult games you can search for any category that includes a "mature" in it's cat title by searching for "6=*mature*" and thus it searches for mature anywhere in the string. 

An average variable looks like this:


The number is the type of information to look for, the string on the other end of the equals sign is the actual name of the information.  The numbers represent the following categories. 

0 = The Rom name
1 = The Game's Name
2 = The year the game was manufactured. 
3 = The manufacturer.
4 = The name of the parent Rom.
5 = The emulator's name (see now you finally know what that '5' means)
6 = The game's category.
7 = The version of mame (or whatever) it first ran on. 

As I said you can mix and match these so you can come up with more complex gamelists. 

For example, lets say we come up with a path entry that looks like this:

caption=Hodge Podge of Games
searchstrings:5=mame;2=1990;0=sfex;6=Fighter / versus

This game list would contain every game you have that is supported by mame.(The old 5=mame)  It would also contain any game that was made in 1990 regardless of what emu it runs on.  Also it would contain Street Fighter Ex if you have it on your system. (has a rom name of sfex) In addition, any games you have that match the category "Fighter / versus" (based on the catver.ini file)  category will be added. All of this is displayed on a single list within Lazarus.  

It's as easy as that.... You can make up to 200 path entries with each of those game lists containing up to 4000 roms.  Be sure to "rescan for roms" whenever you edit this file.  My own personal dirs.ini will be made available for download to give you something to go by.  It's actually quite easy once you get the hang of it. 

Also note that more advanced options are on the way, such as being able to hide some games based on the same variable system.  There are several "official" catver categories in the mame catlist file.  I encourage you to make your own catver's for emus but I will only accept submissions of catvers that adhere to the catlist's mame catver.ini's categories (if at all possible.) 

Please send those catvers in as they are a much need resource!! 


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