This guide is to help people who want to play SD Remix 3.2 online with other people. This guide is organized so that each thing that you need is separated into different sections, so you can use this guide whether you’ve got SD Remix working on Dolphin already or if you’ve got nothing set up at all. If you read the section and you see that you’ve already got it, you can probably skip to the next section (though you should try and skim it anyway just to make sure you have everything you need).
Step 0: Make sure your computer meets the requirements to play SD Remix and play online
The MINIMUM requirements for 2 player matches include:
- Intel Core2 Duo or AMD Phenom Processor
- nVidia 8xxx or AMD Radeon 4xxx series graphics card
- 2 GB of RAM
- DSL or Broadband internet
Recommended specifications are:
- Intel Core i5 or AMD Phenom II processor
- nVidia 8xxx or AMD Radeon 4xxx series graphics card
- 4 GB of RAM
- DSL or Broadband internet
Step 1: Build the SD Remix ISO
Before you can play SD Remix online, you’ll need a copy of SD Remix. For full instruction on building the ISO, refer to our ISO Instructions. We recommend patching it instead of building from source, as it is easier.
Step 2: Download and extract Dolphin (current accepted version 4.0-7840)
Currently the best version of Dolphin for netplay is 4.0-7840, and it’s the version that most people are using for Melee netplay.
After downloading it, extract somewhere you’ll remember it on your hard drive.
Step 3: Set up Dolphin for netplay
It is recommended that you have a separate folder for Dolphin specifically for netplay.
You should create a text file in the same directory as the program (ie. Dolphin.exe) and name it “portable.txt”. This will make it so that the settings for this specific instance of Dolphin are separate from your global settings so they don’t conflict with any other versions of Dolphin you use for normal gaming purposes.
Once that is done, open up Dolphin. Now either go to Options -> Configure… or click on the Config icon to open up the Dolphin Configuration window.
In the General tab, make sure that “Enable Dual Core (speedup)” and “Enable Idle Skipping (speedup)” are checked and that “Enable Cheats” is not checked. Also make sure that FrameLimit is set to “Auto”.
In the GameCube tab, make sure both Slot A and Slot B are set to “<Nothing>”.
In the Paths tab, click on the “Add…” button and navigate to the folder that you have SD Remix in. Once you’ve found it, click “Select Folder”. It should now show up in your “ISO Directories”.
You will also need to set your controls. It is recommended you use a GameCube controller with a GCN to USB adapter. To set your controls, you need to either click on the “Controllers” icon or go to Options -> Controller Settings. Under “GameCube Controllers” make sure Port 1 has “Standard Controller” selected. Then click on “Configure” next to it to set your controls.
You will also need to set the netplay information. Go to Tools -> Start Netplay. In the top drop down box, make sure “Traversal” is selected (as opposed to “Direct”). Then, click on “Reset Traversal Settings”. Next, choose a nickname for yourself (preferably your Smash gamertag).
All of the required settings are done, but you may also want to test out your graphics settings and make sure you’re getting a good frame rate, especially at full screen.
Step 4: Finding an opponent (using the Anther’s Ladder SDRemix chat room)
There are many ways to find matches, but the one we’re going to go over is using Anther’s Ladder.
Before you do anything, you need an account. If you don’t have an account, you will need to sign up for one at www.smashladder.com.
Once you have an account, you should log in and go to the “SDRemix” chat room. This is the main location that people who want to play SD Remix will go to, though it may be pretty empty (we’ll go over how to rectify that in a second). To go to the SDRemix chat room, follow this link while logged in: http://www.smashladder.com/Netplay/SDRemix
Once you’re in the chat room, you can ask the chat if anybody wants to play, or if someone has already said they would like to play, you can say that you are interested in playing that person. However, it is recommended that the opponent you choose be from the same region as you to get as little lag as possible; lag can not only cause slow frame rates during gameplay but also desyncs in very bad cases.
If you don’t get a response because there are very few people in the chat room, you can try and go to the main Melee chat room and say something along the lines of “If anyone wants to play SD Remix, please come to the SD Remix chat here: http://www.smashladder.com/Netplay/SDRemix“, making sure to post the link, and maybe potentially including where you’re from so people know if they can even play with you with decent latency. Some people in the Melee chat are interested in playing SD Remix, so people might join the SD Remix chat room, one of whom may be interested in playing you.
Make sure that both you and your opponent decide on which version of Dolphin you’re going to be using, as this can be very important to preventing desyncing, and also for a gameplay connection to even work at all.
If you’re still having trouble finding people to play with, you can participate in SD Remix netplay tournaments. The best place to keep up with news on netplay tournaments right now is on the SD Remix Facebook page.
Step 5: Starting a match
Once you have found an opponent and have decided on which version of Dolphin you will be using, you need to decide who is going to host. Once that is decided, in Dolphin, go to Tools -> Start Netplay.
If you are the host, you will need to go to the “Host” tab. In the list of games, you need to select SD Remix (it will have the Game ID of “SDRE32” in parenthesis after the title). After selecting it, click “Host”. On the right hand side of the new window, make sure the drop down window says “ID:”. To the right of that will be a code, called the “host code” (random letters and numbers). To the right of that there is a button that says “Copy”. Click on that to copy the host code to your clipboard. Paste that in a conversation to your opponent (probably in an Anther’s Ladder private message to your opponent).
If you are not the host, you will need to wait for your opponent to give you the host code. Once you get it, go to the “Connect” tab and put the host code you’ve just received in the “Host Code” text box. Then click “Connect”.
At this point, both players should be able to use the window to chat with each other on the left side.
If you are the host, you will need to set the pad buffer, which is at the bottom of the window next to the “Start” button. But what do you set it to? A good start is to look at your opponent’s ping on the right hand side. Divide the ping you see by 15ms, round that up, and set the resulting number as your buffer. When you both are ready, click “Start” to start the match.
Step 6: Playing the match
Once a match has started, the first thing you need to do is make sure your game is full screen, as this will affect the frame rate and lag you suffer. If you are in windowed mode, press alt+enter while Dolphin is the active window to go into full screen. If you need to go back to windowed mode, you should press alt+enter again.
Secondly, go to the character select screen and make sure you’re getting a good frame rate (remember to check the frame rate while you’re in full screen). If you are getting lower than 60 frames per second, the host may need to increase the pad buffer, like in Step 5. Increase the pad buffer until the frame rate stabilizes, but make sure it is as low as possible because a higher pad buffer will introduce input lag.
At this point, you just select the characters and stages. You may want to communicate with your opponent in the Dolphin netplay chat which stage(s) you want, assuming you don’t go random. Having multiple monitors is useful for this, as you can see the chat and play in full screen at the same time. If you don’t have multiple monitors, you can just use alt+enter to enter and exit full screen mode.
After every match, you should make sure you go into chat to make sure your opponent hasn’t said anything. If not, you can continue playing more matches.
Step 7: Ending a match
If you or your opponent feel like you want to stop, this should be communicated in chat. It is also customary to say something like “Good games”, “GGs”, “It’s been fun”, or “Thanks for the matches” and generally having a closing conversation or saying goodbye before leaving. You can then stop Dolphin however way you feel (you can just close all the relevant windows, though some may ask to confirm that you want to close them).
If you got this far, congratulations! You have successfully played SD Remix online!