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Revision as of 19:18, 15 February 2015 by ProgrammerNerd (talk | contribs)
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Header: fxcg/display.h
Syscall index: 0x18F9
Function signature: void PrintXY(int x, int y, char* message, int mode, int color)

Draws a line of homescreen-style text in VRAM, with the specified position and color.


  • x - The "homescreen" column of the first character to be drawn, 1 to 20.
  • y - The "homescreen" row, 0 to 7 (see note 4).
  • mode - controls whether to clear text background, or invert background and foreground colors, using a bitmask. See note 2 for details.
  • message - pointer to a buffer (possibly const and/or static) containing the message to display. The first two characters of the message are ignored, see note 1.
  • color - text color of the characters, see note 3, below.


Note 1: The first two bytes are not ignored. The function of the two bytes is still under study. It will always work to pad the beginning of your string with characters which will be ignored as in the first set of examples. You should not attempt to optimize your binary size a little bit by instead subtracting two bytes from the actual string address as in the second set of examples. Another reason why this is bad is there may be certain rare situations where this scheme will cause a crash (see note 5).

Note 2: Display mode 0 is normal, overwrite mode. The rectangle containing each character is cleared. Setting bit 5 (0x20) makes the background not be erased. Setting bit 0 (0x01) makes the text be written in inverse mode. If you want both, bitwise OR the modes together.

You may also use the following, defined in color.h:


When using 0x21 (0x20 | 0x01), the effect isn't the expected where the inverted text is drawn on top of the screen. Instead, it acts like an AND operation where the printed text is used to mask what is currently on the screen (color doesn't matter), printing white elsewhere.

Note 3: Valid colors are defined in color.h and are listed below:

  • TEXT_COLOR_BLACK (0) - Black
  • TEXT_COLOR_BLUE (1) - Blue
  • TEXT_COLOR_GREEN (2) - Green
  • TEXT_COLOR_CYAN (3) - Cyan
  • TEXT_COLOR_RED (4) - Red
  • TEXT_COLOR_PURPLE (5) - Purple
  • TEXT_COLOR_YELLOW (6) - Yellow
  • TEXT_COLOR_WHITE (7) - White

Note 4: Row 0:

A valid input to PrintXY's y parameter is 0, but this is usually not rendered because row 0 is located under the status bar the top of the screen. If the status bar is disabled, it will work perfectly.

Note 5: If the system attempts to read an invalid address you pass to it as a parameter, this will fail. If your program is laid out in memory such that your parameter is less than two bytes after an unmapped memory region, reading the first two bytes will cause a fault. Given the memory map for addon execution these situations should be very rare, but for strict correctness always provide the leading bytes.

A sufficiently smart optimizer may also break code using this trick, since out-of-bounds array access (including string literals) is undefined behavior under the C standard. If the optimizer is able to prove that your code accesses values outside the array bounds, it is likely to remove it altogether (according to the standard it's permitted to do literally anything, such as eating your laundry). In practice, this has not yet been an issue.