Input Macro Plugin

Introduction

The input macro plugin allows you to trigger a sequence of emulated input actions with a key or button combination. This can help people with disabilities or injuries that make some input sequences difficult. It can also be used as a way to cheat in games that require rapid sequences of inputs, like the running events in Track & Field, or the eating minigame in Daisu-Kiss.

To configure the input macro plugin, activate the main menu (press Tab during emulation by default), select Plugin Options, and then select Input Macros. Configured input macros for the current system are listed, along with their activation sequences (initially there will be no input macros configured). Select a macro to edit it, or choose Add macro to set up a new input macro. See Editing input macros for details on editing input macros. You can delete an input macro by highlighting it in the menu and pressing the UI Clear key (Del/Delete/Forward Delete on the keyboard by default).

Input macros are saved in the inputmacro folder in the plugin data folder (see the homepath option). A file is created for each system with input macros configured, named according to the system’s short name (or ROM set name), with the extension .cfg. For example, input macros for Daisu-Kiss will be saved in the file daiskiss.cfg in the inputmacro folder in your plugin data folder. The input macros are stored in JSON format.

Editing input macros

The options for editing input macros are the same whether you’re creating a new macro or editing an existing macro. Input macros consist of a sequence of steps. Each step optionally waits for a configurable delay, then activates one or more emulated inputs for a specified duration. You can choose what should happen if the activation sequence is still held when the final step of the macro completes: the emulated inputs can be released, the final step can be prolonged, or the macro can loop back to any step in the sequence.

The settings in first section of the macro editing menu apply to the macro as a whole:

  • The Name will be used in the list of input macros, so it helps to make it descriptive. Press the UI Select key (Return/Enter on the keyboard or the first button on the first joystick by default) to edit the current name, or press the UI Clear key to type a new name. Press the UI Select key before moving to another menu item to save the new name; press the UI Cancel key (Escape/Esc on the keyboard by default) to change discard the new name.

  • Select Activation sequence to set the key or button combination you want to use to activate the macro. Keep in mind that regular input settings still apply, so you probably want to use a combination that isn’t being used for any other emulated input in the system.

  • Set On release to specify what should happen if the activation sequence is released before the macro completes. When set to Stop immediately, any emulated inputs activated by the macro will be released immediately, and no further steps will be processed; when set to Complete macro, the macro will continue to be processed until the end of the final step.

  • Set When held to specify what should happen if the activation sequence is held after the final step of the macro completes. When set to Release, any inputs activated by the macro will be released, and the macro will not be reactivated until the activation sequence is released and pressed again; when set to Prolong step <n> where <n> is the number of the final step of the macro, the emulated inputs activated by the final step of the macro will remain active until the activation sequence is released; when set to Loop to step <n> where <n> is a step number, macro processing will return to that step, including its delay, if the activation sequence is held after the final step completes.

Each step has delay, duration and input settings:

  • Set the Delay to the number of emulated video frame intervals to wait before activating the inputs for the step. During the delay, no emulated inputs will be activated by the macro. You can reset the setting to zero by pressing the UI Clear key.

  • Set the Duration to the number of emulated video frame intervals to hold the emulated inputs for the step active before moving to the next step (or completing the macro in the case of the final step). You can reset the setting to one frame by pressing the UI Clear key.

  • Set the Input settings to the emulated inputs to activate for the step. Only non-toggle digital inputs are supported. Select Add input to set multiple inputs for a step (this option will only appear after you set the first input for the initially created step when creating a new macro). If the step has multiple inputs, you can highlight an input on the menu and press the UI Clear key to delete it (all steps must have at least one input, so you can’t delete the only input for a step).

  • If the macro has multiple steps, you can select Delete step to delete a step (this options does not appear if the macro only has a single step). Remember to check that the On release and When held settings are correct after deleting steps.

To add a step to the macro, highlight Add step at position (below the existing steps), use the UI Left/Right keys or click the arrows to set the position where you’d like to insert the new step, and then press the UI Select key (or double-click the menu item) to add the new step. You will be prompted to set the first input for the new step. Remember to check the On release and When held settings after adding steps. The Add step at position item will only appear after you set the first input for the initially created step when creating a new macro.

When creating a new macro, there is a Cancel option that changes to Create after you set the activating sequence and the first input for the initially created step. Select Create to finish creating the macro and return to the list of input macros. The new macro will be added at the end of the list. Press the UI Cancel key, or select Cancel before setting the activation sequence/input, to return to the previous menu without creating the new macro.

When editing an existing macro, select Done or press the UI Cancel key to return to the list of input macros. Changes take effect immediately.

Example macros

Raiden autofire

This provides player 1 autofire functionality using the space bar. The same thing could be achieved using the Autofire Plugin, but this demonstrates a simple looping macro:

  • Name: P1 Autofire

  • Activation sequence: Kbd Space

  • On release: Stop immediately

  • When held: Loop to step 2

  • Step 1:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 2

    • Input 1: P1 Button 1

  • Step 2:

    • Delay (frames): 4

    • Duration (frames): 2

    • Input 1: P1 Button 1

The first step has no delay so that firing begins as soon as the space bar is pressed. The second step has sufficient delay to ensure the game recognises the button being pressed and released again. The second step is repeated as long as the space bar is held down.

Track & Field sprint cheat

This allows you to run in Konami Track & Field by holding a single button. This takes most of the skill (and fun) out of the game:

  • Name: P1 Sprint

  • Activation sequence: Kbd Shift

  • On release: Stop immediately

  • When held: Loop to step 2

  • Step 1:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Button 1

  • Step 2:

    • Delay (frames): 1

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Button 3

  • Step 3:

    • Delay (frames): 1

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Button 1

This macro rapidly alternates pressing buttons 1 and 3 – the pattern required to run in the game.

Street Fighter II Shoryuken

This macro allows you to perform a right-facing Shōryūken (Dragon Punch) by pressing a single key:

  • Name: 1P Shoryuken LP

  • Activation sequence: Kbd M

  • On release: Complete macro

  • When held: Prolong step 6

  • Step 1:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Right

  • Step 2:

    • Delay (frames): 1

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Down

  • Step 3:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Down

    • Input 2: P1 Right

  • Step 4:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Right

  • Step 5:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Right

    • Input 2: P1 Jab Punch

  • Step 6:

    • Delay (frames): 0

    • Duration (frames): 1

    • Input 1: P1 Jab Punch

This macro has has involves steps that activate multiple inputs. The macro will complete if the activation sequence is released early, allowing you to tap the key momentarily to perform the move. Holding the activation sequence holds down the attack button.