NDS Framework (in C)


Earlier I was planning a release 2 weeks ago on Sunday… But I really needed much more time, yesterday I finally got it working: my NDS Framework.

Since the whole blog is to give people more info about NDS programming and making it easier to program, I could just make a game like everyone does, but I’ve chosen to create something useful for almost everything you want to create on your NDS: A framework.

My framework works using a parent child concept (just like HTML) in order to position elements quickly to there positions. This way you can easily create a button on the right bottom side of your screen without calculating with pixels, it’s all done by the program!

Taken the above example: “You want to create a button on the right bottom side of the screen”, you will first have to create a screen to render on:

// Create a screen (width, height, backgroundimage (can be NULL))
struct CElement *screen1 = CElementCreateScreen(256, 192, backgroundimage);

// Since I don't have a button element yet, we will draw a squire
// It has the properties (RenderOn, leftOffset, topOffset, width, height)
CElementCreateSquire(screen, -1,-1,100,50);

If the leftOffset will be lower than 0, it will render it on the other side of the screen (the right side), the same counts for the topOffset. The width and height are 100px by 50px.

Another example can be found over here: https://iepro.wordpress.com/2010/01/14/create-an-easy-interface/ where you can see it can also automatically scale (like: width = 100%) all sorts of elements by giving it a width of 0 or a height of 0. A negative width or height will create a rightOffset, so if you want to position something with a border of 5 px, you can do this:

CElementCreateRectangle(screen, 5,5,-5,-5);

I’ve created a screen, what’s next? Well now the program has to calculate the real width, height, offsetLeft and offsetRight of the element. It’s done using the same meganism that DOM is using, by looking to the parent of the element. This is because all elements are positioned relatively to their parents, for example, you’ve created a container (= a special element that can hold multiple elements) on the bottom right of the screen. If you will draw a Squire, it will be drawn on the bottom right section (so relatively to the container where it’s in). To calculate all this, you only have to call the next line:


Ok, so now you’ve got a screen holding elements, but you want to render it on one of the two screens of the NDS, this is what you will do to get that working:

CElementDraw(screen1, video_buffer1);
CElementDraw(screen1, video_buffer4);

It will now render my virtual screen to both screens of the NDS. This way you can make multiple screens and load them in memory, and when you need them, you only have to execute CElementDraw(screen_settings, video_buffer4); to get it working!

Is there more?

Well since a framework is never done, and I am limited to time, I included the following things in this framework:

  • The auto calculation of elements (biggest part of the code)
  • A lookup element to see on what element is pushed using CElementAt(screen1, x, y)
  • An element to draw a triangle
  • An element to draw a rectangle
  • An element to draw a line
  • An element to draw a circle
  • A List “class” to create dynamic arrays
  • A function to remove a bunch of elements (so if you want to delete screen1, you can just: CElementRemove(screen1) and it will remove all other elements with it! And release there pointers 😉 )
  • A draw function to create a AntiAliassed line using the Xiaolin Wu algorithm (echter deze kijkt ook echt naar de achtergrond om de anti aliassing kleur te genereren)
  • A draw function to create a Circle (not anti aliassed, since it costs 1000 lines of code to get that working)
  • An element that can contain multiple elements
  • An element that lets you devide a screen in to multiple sections (sortof a table)

Things like text elements aren’t implemented, but you can easy implement a Element by looking to my code. The only thing you really have to create is a function to draw it on your screen.


	// Create a virtual screen
	struct CElement *screen1 = CElementCreateScreen(256, 192);
	// Create a container fill it to the whole screen (width: 0, height: 0)
	struct CElement *container = CElementCreateContainer(screen1, 0, 0, 0, 0);
	// Split the screen in two sections vertically (and add it to the container)
	struct CElement *splitterY = CElementCreateSplitterY(container, 0, 0, 0, 0, 2);
	// Split the screen in three sections horizontally (and add them to the above splitter)
	struct CElement *splitterX1 = CElementCreateSplitterX(splitterY, 0, 0, 0, 0, 3);
	struct CElement *splitterX2 = CElementCreateSplitterX(splitterY, 0, 0, 0, 0, 3);
	// Add some elements to it:
	CElementCreateRectangle(splitterX1, 0,0,0,0);
	CElementCreateTriangle(splitterX1, 0,0,0,0);
	CElementCreateRectangle(splitterX1, 0,0,0,0);
	CElementCreateRectangle(splitterX2, 0,0,0,0);
	CElementCreateCircle(splitterX2, 0,0,0,0);
	struct CElement *rect= CElementCreateRectangle(splitterX2, 0,0,0,0);
	// Set properties & draw
	CElementDraw(screen1, video_buffer1);
	CElementDraw(screen1, video_buffer4);

	splashImage(video_buffer4, (u32 *)iepro_fun_img_bin);
	CElementDraw(screen1, video_buffer4);


  • Updated CDraw.h/.c + CDrawElement.h/.c; renamed Squire to Rectangle (since it is a rectangle, and squire isn’t spelled correctly
  • Added negative left / top to become the right offset like posted above


The download package will have 2 folders, C and C_NDS, the C is to easily debug (without using NDS related code), if compiled you can see exactly what it is doing. The C_NDS is the same package + NDS related code to create a NDS rom.

[ Download ]


Game final version


UPDATE: Project files can now also be found here: http://cid-f497e97b3ff3a16a.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/Game^_files.rar

This is the final version of the first nds game I made. Rules are simple because there are no rules. You can come up with them yourself. I hope you’ll enjoy the game. http://cid-f497e97b3ff3a16a.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.Public/Game.rar

Anti-aliased line Alpha



here you can see my “game” (which isn’t really a game) from my project. As you can see images are missing but I didn’t had time to do this. Therefor a little preview of a line with and without anti-aliasing. The algoritm I used for anti-aliasing is Xiaolin Wu’s line algorithm. For the “normal” line I used the Bresenham line’s algorithm. Source code can be found here. I hope you can see the difference 😉

Eclipse on windows using ARM9 toolchain


The following images contain some info about the settings for eclipse for the nds on windows XP. All settings can be found in the project settings.

Issue when declaring functionpointer


I have two functions:
void emptyFunction(int functionChoice)

void randomizeButtons(Button* array[], u8 items)
int counter;
for(counter=0; counter<items; counter++)
array[counter]->posX = 220*rand();
array[counter]->posY = 220*rand();


And two pointers to these functions:
void (*foo)(int);
foo = &emptyFunction;

void (*foo2)(Button*, u8);
foo2 = &randomizeButtons;

The second pointer though, gives a warning:
warning: assignment from incompatible pointer type

To solve this, for the second pointer only, I have to change the function declaration OR typecast to (void*).
So solution 1:
void (*foo2);

And solution 2:
foo2 = (void*) &randomizeButtons;

Very strange, because this isn’t needed for the first functionpointer, foo.

Minor UPDATE Single Pipe Builder


Playing my (first) NDS game “Single Pipe Builder” on a real NDS works flawlessly. However, placing the ‘key rock’ can be difficult for most people (right handed). With this update you can use the shoulder buttons! Also, the filename now corresponds tot the name of the game.

The update is backwards compatible: the ‘A’ button still works.

Have fun!

Download singlePipeBuilder.zip

Replace thumbstick of your N64 controller


It can be done cheap and by yourself!

Nintendo Repair Shop