Download and Install IrfanViewEdit
IrfanView is a handy piece of software that will let you do a whole host of things with images, including screen capture. Perfect for screenshot LPs - much better than print screen / paste! Download it (free) and install it. I'll assume you know how to install software. Careful though, it will ask if you want to install two Google search bars.
Getting Setup for Image CaptureEdit
This is the main screen of Irfanview.
When you want to do some screen capping, you need to initiate that part of Irfanview. Go to Options > Capture/Screenshot, or just press C. Doing so brings up the options screen:
Capture Area: - Whole desktop area will do just that - take a full screen screenshot - Foreground window will take the gameplay area and the program border (like these screens) - Foreground window - Client area will take the gameplay area but also a 1px border (so cropping will need to be done)
Capture Method: - Hot Key default is Ctrl+F11 but that might be inconvenient. I find Ctrl+` is more handy for my emulator setups, find a hot key that is right for YOU. It doesn't have to be a two key combination either. Set it to "C" if you want.
Capture Options: - Include mouse cursor is set to default yes. Fuck that. Uncheck the box and you wont accidentally capture the cursor.
Saving Method: - Show captured image in main window is no more use than an ornament - Save captured image as file. Select this! - - File name: select whatever you want here. The %d%m stuff is auto incremental based on your system clock so you might do well to leave the file name as it is for the moment - - Destination directory: Choose a folder for unprocessed screen captures (there will be an organisation guide to follow shortly)
Please read r1ch's guide to optimized image formats
The format you save your screen shots as and the compression you use depends on the game you are playing. 3D games will usually get away with JPEG on high compression (~70), but 2D sprite and text based games may need PNG format. If you plan to do any editing on the screenshots you take (such as cropping or resizing), always use PNG.
Please do your homework, do some test shots, and try to keep the filesize at a suitable level!
Go for It!Edit
When you've got sorted with the options, click start and you're away. Irfanview will minimize, so just fire up your emulator (make sure you click the client area), and when you press your hot key(s), your screenshot will appear in your chosen directory.
You only have to set up once. The next time you go to screencap, just go to View > Capture and click Start.
Processing the raw imageEdit
Sometimes, the raw images you take in the above process will be good for posting right away. Most of the time, though, you'll have to do some cropping and/or resizing first. Luckily, Irfanview has functionality for just that!
Open IrfanView and go to "File > Batch Conversion / Rename"
Click "Add" which is one of the buttons on the left, then select all the pictures you want to be resized. You can also drag and drop.
In the "Work as:" group, make sure "Batch Conversion" is selected. Also make sure that "Use Advanced Options" is selected and click "Set advanced options"
Here, you can crop and/or resize your images. State the dimensions that you want the final images to be.
For games where the art is pixel style (<= 16-bit era) deselect "Use Resample Function", but if your game is smooth or 3D graphics, make sure it is selected.
Set the "Output Format" to JPG or PNG. Again, JPG is good for 3D, PNG is good for pixel art. Maybe try both and see if the JPG has any noticable artifacts.
Select an "Output directory" in a different folder to the original images. When you are ready, click "Start" and your images will be resized in the chosen folder.