Turbografx-16 / PC-engine |OT| Hold select and run to RESET

Andromeda

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,710
I have an original french RGB modded PC engine done by Sodipeng. Great little machine. I particularly love Ninja Spirit:


 

ShinJohnpv

Member
Oct 25, 2017
557
If I just raise the cover to the battery compartment with double sided tape, I wonder if I can get a normal CR2032 to fit in.
The art on the card is pretty great, so I'd ideally like to keep it on!

So, if I'm understanding the PC Engine save situation correctly, there's no non-volatile save option for the systems?
It's a possibility, I haven't tried just a regular CR2032 in it. In regards to your second question, I have seen people who have replaced the capacitor powered ram in a Duo/Duo-R/RX with FRAM. I have no idea on how easy or hard that mod is to do. I've also seen ones where people have modded in a little LCD screen with a little button switch, to say what page they're on, since the FRAM they put in was bigger. Again though no idea on how difficult or easy those kinds of mods are. I just popped the top off my tennokoe and put a new battery in and have sadly left it with the top popped.
 
The SSDS3 manages saves and is non-volatile.
Sorry - I meant of the original options released back in the 1990s. But, your answer is definitely a solution.
My issue is that I only have use for the CD aspect of the system and wish to play the CDs on original hardware for as long as possible.

In regards to your second question, I have seen people who have replaced the capacitor powered ram in a Duo/Duo-R/RX with FRAM. I have no idea on how easy or hard that mod is to do. I've also seen ones where people have modded in a little LCD screen with a little button switch, to say what page they're on, since the FRAM they put in was bigger. Again though no idea on how difficult or easy those kinds of mods are. I just popped the top off my tennokoe and put a new battery in and have sadly left it with the top popped.
This has me wondering if there's any way to mod Ten no Koe cards in a similar way. I'm guessing not. But, considering it's the most cost effective solution out there for saves, it'd be a great way to help out the community.

Searching around, I found people asking for a flash solution on the Ten no Koe card since 2006, so I'm apparently not the only one who would like this!
 

ShinJohnpv

Member
Oct 25, 2017
557
I know people were asking for a solution from Krikzz as well with the turbo everdrive and I think that got a never going to happen response or something. It would be nice to be able to back up my Ys I+II, III, IV, and Castlevania saves to my computer.
 
Yeah, the TurboEverdrive is the most obvious solution, but still a bit costly. As it stands, I just keep my most important saves on both a Ten no Koe and my console. That way, if one of the batteries dies, I should hopefully be ok, unless they both die at once...

I have an original french RGB modded PC engine done by Sodipeng. Great little machine. I particularly love Ninja Spirit
Wha? I had no clue there was a French PC Engine!
Does it just look like a Japanese PC Engine and is it compatible with Japanese PC Engine cards or US Turbografx cards?
Thanks for sharing!!
 

lunarwhale

Member
Oct 25, 2017
604
Does anyone know the best save backup units for the PC Engine?
Everything I can find, besides internal saves, is battery backed and will lose all saves when the batteries die.

OR! Does anyone know a good place to get a Ten no Koe card battery replaced?
Tennokoe Shop UK is great. I purchased a refurbished bank from them a few weeks ago and it works perfectly. They seem to have a reasonably priced battery replacement service as well.

Also, how did you modify your IFU? I purchased one recently (only just getting into PCE) and love using it, but RGB would really be great.

To chime in on the SSD3, I recently got one (direct from TerraOnion) and can attest that the newest batches have the video and audio issues fixed. Sometimes I've noticed audio and video cut out while playing, but I suspect that's due to my cable. TerraOnion and StoneAgeGamer both are shipping out this new revision.
 

CeramicDragon

Member
Nov 10, 2017
542
Orange, CA
Talk me into a SSD3 and pc engine. So I can just download the roms to a microSD card and good to go? Then I would need to find an old CRT monitor. What a rabbit hole to go down. Do the games run just like they do?
 

Polyh3dron

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,704
Talk me into a SSD3 and pc engine. So I can just download the roms to a microSD card and good to go? Then I would need to find an old CRT monitor. What a rabbit hole to go down. Do the games run just like they do?
Yes, the HuCard games playing on the SSDS3 are indistinguishable from the real thing. The CD games have shorter load times and a small number of them have some technical issues but they run great for the most part, and the CD audio issues can be fixed with a mod offered by FireBrandX.
 

Polyh3dron

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,704
Wha? I had no clue there was a French PC Engine!
Does it just look like a Japanese PC Engine and is it compatible with Japanese PC Engine cards or US Turbografx cards?
Thanks for sharing!!
From Wikipedia:

After seeing the TurboGrafx-16 suffer in America, NEC decided to cancel their European releases. Units for the European markets were already produced, which were essentially US models modified to run on PAL television sets, and branded as simply TurboGrafx. NEC sold this stock to distributors - in the United Kingdom Telegames released the TurboGrafx in 1990 in extremely limited quantities.[12] This model was also released in Spain and Portugal through selected retailers.[13] No PAL HuCards were made, and instead the European system can play all American games without modifications, albeit with the necessary slowdown to 50 Hz.

PC Engine consoles (as well as some of its add-ons) were imported from Japan by French unlicensed importer Sodipeng (Société de Distribution de la PC Engine, a subsidiary of Guillemot International), from November 1989 to 1993.[14] This came after considerable enthusiasm in the French press. This PC Engine was largely available in France and Benelux through major retailers. It came with French language instructions and also an AV cable to enable its input to a SECAM television set. Its launch price was 1,790 French francs (about 416 as of 2013).[15]
 
Huh. I was searching for pictures and proof and everything on that French system, and didn't find much - so I didn't even bother trying to look it up on Wikipedia.

A super fascinating system, though! AND Ninja Spirit is still amazing.

Tennokoe Shop UK is great. I purchased a refurbished bank from them a few weeks ago and it works perfectly. They seem to have a reasonably priced battery replacement service as well.

Also, how did you modify your IFU? I purchased one recently (only just getting into PCE) and love using it, but RGB would really be great.
Awesome information, much appreciated!

For my IFU, it was not quite as simple as some other RGB mods out there, but not too bad. I had to track down an amp from someone out here in the US on eBay. Then, at that time, I had to decipher the proper wiring scheme on the IFU itself - and finally, you have to drill out a spot for the DIN connectors - I would recommend somewhere on the back part of the case.

If Voultar comes out with his new IFU RGB amp, as promised, that will be a much better, easier solution! You will probably need to drill the case still, though.

Talk me into a SSD3 and pc engine. So I can just download the roms to a microSD card and good to go? Then I would need to find an old CRT monitor. What a rabbit hole to go down. Do the games run just like they do?
To be honest, you do not necessarily need an old CRT monitor - there is the RetroTINK, which costs about $100 that will upscale through component at 480p. The OSSC will do the same, but also takes SCART.
And, technically, some newer TVs will accept 240p and output them at 480p, no extra technology needed - but it's not optimal.

Most old CRT monitors run for around $75-100 and no one knows how much longer they will last.

If you enjoy retro games and would like to play more in the future on modern TVs, the money you put toward any old CRT might be better spent on newer technology that will allow you to enjoy retro consoles for longer.
 
Last edited:
So with a retrotink2, SSD3, core graphx system, it will be about $500 to enjoy some PC engine goodness?
With that particular setup, yes. Keep in mind, you can use an OSSC and RetroTink with most other popular retro consoles, so that is a worthwhile investment if you'd like to use other retro consoles on newer set ups.

A few ideas to cut costs:
1) Try and find a really cheap CRT with component inputs at a Thrift Store or by asking around OR
2) Buy PC Engine + SSDS3 first, and use composite cables on whatever TV you have for a while OR
3) If you aren't as interested in the CD games, you can save $150 by getting a TurboEverdrive instead of SSDS3.
If you DO have any interest in PC Engine/Turbo CD games, the SSDS3 would be a much better idea.

And the cheapest option: just buy a PC Engine CoreGrafx (model 1 or 2 will be fine), composite AV Cables, and a couple good, cheap PC Engine games (HuCards) and enjoy a slightly blurry, maybe laggy picture on your flatscreen while saving up for the other accessories mentioned here.
Even better, if you get a cheap CRT, composite cables will look just fine on it.

But, yeah. A lot of us here have put in a fair amount of investment, both time and money, to get a pristine picture on either a high end CRT or device to upscale images on our flatscreens.

All that said, retro gaming is all about enjoying the games and the systems in whatever way you can. The most important thing is to enjoy what you feel most comfortable purchasing.
 
Last edited:

Polyh3dron

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,704
I’ll also add that if you are in the US and want to buy a SSDS3, the best place to get it from is Stone Age Gamer.
 

Andromeda

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,710
...



Wha? I had no clue there was a French PC Engine!
Does it just look like a Japanese PC Engine and is it compatible with Japanese PC Engine cards or US Turbografx cards?
Thanks for sharing!!
Well, kinda. It's actually a japanese PC engine distributed officially by Sodipend in France. It's RGB modded by them and there is even a french manual. I think the RGB image is great.
 

CeramicDragon

Member
Nov 10, 2017
542
Orange, CA
$66 shipped for a worn out Coregraphx w/ red white yellow cables, power adapter and controller. It has soldering iron marks on it. Comes with Galaga 88. Worth it for $66?
 

ShinJohnpv

Member
Oct 25, 2017
557
I think you could do better if you watch auctions. To me that seems a bit high for the condition its in.
 
So how much to spend on a core graphic with connections and controller? Every set on eBay is over $100.
Honestly, $66 seems like a reasonable price to me, with everything included. Most Coregrafx I've seen run about $70-80, but I don't check auctions, which may be what they're referring to!

Just be sure that the controller works properly - description should state its condition.
 
Last edited:

Vinegar Joe

Member
Oct 26, 2017
360
I'm thinking about picking up an SSDS3 and a NeoSD. I keep hearing mixed things about both products and Terraonoin, though. Plus it is an insane amount of money to drop on some retro gear...but that OSSC has got to be put to good use somehow :|

Can anyone who has either/both give some opinions? I just have a regular Core grafx, so the cost will be offset by the fact I won't need an RGB mod any longer. I'll tell myself that.

And I have a decent size (50+) MVS collection and I'm just getting in to AES so I can play on my TV. I have one game on AES, so it seems wise to not even bother starting a dupe collection and going straight for the NeoSD so I can play my...uhh...50 MVS backups.

I'm not sure any of this is a good idea, or even healthy. Has buyer's remorse written all over it.
 
I'm thinking about picking up an SSDS3 and a NeoSD. I keep hearing mixed things about both products and Terraonoin, though. Plus it is an insane amount of money to drop on some retro gear...but that OSSC has got to be put to good use somehow :|

Can anyone who has either/both give some opinions? I just have a regular Core grafx, so the cost will be offset by the fact I won't need an RGB mod any longer. I'll tell myself that.

And I have a decent size (50+) MVS collection and I'm just getting in to AES so I can play on my TV. I have one game on AES, so it seems wise to not even bother starting a dupe collection and going straight for the NeoSD so I can play my...uhh...50 MVS backups.

I'm not sure any of this is a good idea, or even healthy. Has buyer's remorse written all over it.
Can't speak to the NeoSD, but as Polyh3dron said, the SSDS3 should be pretty much perfect now, thanks in part to a few electrical engineers who helped out. Just be sure to order the most recent revision, and you should be set. Everyone who has one seems to love it!

I know that TerraOnion has shown some obstinance and frustration regarding their products that has left a bad feeling for some folks. But, the product itself seems to now be completely solid.

If you already have the CoreGrafx, I don't think you'll suffer much buyer's remorse. After all, you gain access to a HUGE library, including some amazing CD games. And if you love shmups, it's a no-brainer.

I'm not nearly as big of a fan of NeoGeo games, so that one's all up to you!
 
Oct 26, 2017
345
I know th SSDS3 is all the rage right now. But still went ahead and bought my first Duo-R last week. This thing is a beauty and I’m planning on getting a Turbo Ecerdrive for the Hu-cards and then slowly start building up a small library of CD games.

I originally bought a Core Grafx II off eBay for $99 shipped from Japan. But I had buyer’s remorse after winning the auction. It arrived as well, but the odd off-brand AC adapter the buyer sent doesn’t work at all. Thankfully my Genesis 1 AC adapter did allow me to verify that unit works.
 

Vinegar Joe

Member
Oct 26, 2017
360
Can't speak to the NeoSD, but as Polyh3dron said, the SSDS3 should be pretty much perfect now, thanks in part to a few electrical engineers who helped out. Just be sure to order the most recent revision, and you should be set. Everyone who has one seems to love it!

I know that TerraOnion has shown some obstinance and frustration regarding their products that has left a bad feeling for some folks. But, the product itself seems to now be completely solid.

If you already have the CoreGrafx, I don't think you'll suffer much buyer's remorse. After all, you gain access to a HUGE library, including some amazing CD games. And if you love shmups, it's a no-brainer.

I'm not nearly as big of a fan of NeoGeo games, so that one's all up to you!
Thanks, appreciate the input. Likely to bite the bullet with this one.

The SSDS3 does seem to be good value when you put it in perspective. Same for the NeoSD considering you can pay more for a single AES game.

I'll just not look at my bank balance for a month :D
 

Lakeside

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,640
You may wind up doing caps and/or jailbar fix on the Core Grafx. Just FYI.

They don't tend to have the bad cap situation of the Duo's though.
 

Vinegar Joe

Member
Oct 26, 2017
360
You may wind up doing caps and/or jailbar fix on the Core Grafx. Just FYI.

They don't tend to have the bad cap situation of the Duo's though.
Is this in addition to the SSDS3 then? Any way to tell if I need to do this before I buy one? It's a Core Grafx 2 (grey and blue) if it makes any difference.

Just did a jailbar fix for my MD which was super simple!
 

Lakeside

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,640
Is this in addition to the SSDS3 then? Any way to tell if I need to do this before I buy one? It's a Core Grafx 2 (grey and blue) if it makes any difference.

Just did a jailbar fix for my MD which was super simple!
I'm not aware of any way to tell but there's a lot of talk on various forums about the SSD3 noise and such. I'll look tonight and post if possible.
 
Oct 26, 2017
345
Is this in addition to the SSDS3 then? Any way to tell if I need to do this before I buy one? It's a Core Grafx 2 (grey and blue) if it makes any difference.

Just did a jailbar fix for my MD which was super simple!
If your unit is Grey & Blue, then you have a Core Grafx 1. This model supposedly has an improved chipset that corrects a music issue.

And yeah, I've heard the all the hu-card models should be recapped. If I keep my Core 2, I'll have that done.
 

Vinegar Joe

Member
Oct 26, 2017
360
I'm not aware of any way to tell but there's a lot of talk on various forums about the SSD3 noise and such. I'll look tonight and post if possible.
Thanks, don't go out of your way on my account though!
If your unit is Grey & Blue, then you have a Core Grafx 1. This model supposedly has an improved chipset that corrects a music issue.

And yeah, I've heard the all the hu-card models should be recapped. If I keep my Core 2, I'll have that done.
Ah, thought the white one was a core unit for some reason. I'll look in to recapping, this is all new to me so thanks for the heads-up.
 

Lakeside

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,640
The whole thing is annoying really. I've already had my Duo recapped (bought that new back in the day) and they were leaking.

Just got a Core Grafx that I haven't even used yet, but will get that done too along with jailbar fix. Got the early model SSD3 and that needed both audio and video mods to fix their mistakes.. ugh.

And off topic but I have several other consoles that need to get caps done preventatively.
 
Oct 25, 2017
149
I don't know anyone who replaces the batteries as a service, but I did it myself on my TenNoKoe bank card. The hardest part was finding the right size battery. There's a website a lot of places quote that lists a battery size that is actually too thick, I forget off the top of my head the correct size but its pretty thin. I had an even harder time finding one with solder tabs on it, let a lone one with the solder tabs in the right spot. So I had to kind of jimmy rig a way for it to connect to the pads. I never did get double sided tape either to get the top to stick back on it.
The Tennokoe Bank uses a CR2320 battery. Not a 2032, 2320; it's thinner than the 2032 and holds a bit less charge. I think that should be correct, if not please say otherwise. If you bump up the card a bit more though and fit in a 2032 you'll get a longer battery life since that's a larger battery with the same output. Here's a link to an old thread on ASSEMbler where someone shows the inside of the card as they replaced the battery: https://assemblergames.com/threads/tennokoe-bank-battery-replacement.47885/

If your unit is Grey & Blue, then you have a Core Grafx 1. This model supposedly has an improved chipset that corrects a music issue.

And yeah, I've heard the all the hu-card models should be recapped. If I keep my Core 2, I'll have that done.
As far as I've heard, three (kind of four) TG16/PCE things have particularly bad capacitors: the TurboExpress (PC Engine GT), Super CD-ROM2 addon drive (the Super CD unit in particular, not the original), and the PC Engine/Turbo Duo. Additionally, everything LaserActive, including the NEC PAC, also have bad caps. Other models of PCE and TG16 should be okay though, including the Duo R and Duo RX, and all of the regular HuCard-only systems other than the handheld. I'm sure you could have issues with anything though, as the capacitors age.

So, if I'm understanding the PC Engine save situation correctly, there's no non-volatile save option for the systems?
Yes, everything uses various types of batteries and capacitors, other than the SSD addon of course. I use a Memory Base 128, which works well; it uses AA batteries, but with good batteries, if you keep it plugged in as I do, I haven't lost files yet. I do replace the batteries about once a year, when they start running low, though. You need specific games in order to fully use the MB128, though, in order to copy files to and from your system's internal memory, since only a handful of games directly support it. I've got a list on my website here, if you're interested: http://www.blackfalcongames.net/?p=190 I cover the various save addons, which games have MB128 support, etc.

I also have a Tennokoe Bank (which still held a save last time I checked), but with the MB128 I really don't need it. Having to use specific games to transfer files is a bit of a pain, but overall I like it more, since some games can save to it directly and it holds so much.
 
Last edited:
... This thing is a beauty and I’m planning on getting a Turbo Ecerdrive for the Hu-cards and then slowly start building up a small library of CD games.

I originally bought a Core Grafx II off eBay for $99 shipped from Japan. But I had buyer’s remorse after winning the auction. It arrived as well, but the odd off-brand AC adapter the buyer sent doesn’t work at all.
This is probably the best way to do things these days. I have a few HuCards in addition to a decent sized PCE CD collection. I've been thinking of posting a list of games that are affordable, yet still worth collecting, if anyone would have interest in that.

So, you have TWO systems now? That's awesome.

Thanks, don't go out of your way on my account though!.
The newest revision has fixed all the noise and issues with the SSDS3. Should be a viable purchase without any issues now.

The Tennokoe Bank uses a CR2320 battery. Not a 2032, 2320; it's thinner than the 2032 and holds a bit less charge. I think that should be correct, if not please say otherwise. If you bump up the card a bit more though and fit in a 2032 you'll get a longer battery life since that's a larger battery with the same output. Here's a link to an old thread on ASSEMbler where someone shows the inside of the card as they replaced the battery: https://assemblergames.com/threads/tennokoe-bank-battery-replacement.47885/

...

Yes, everything uses various types of batteries and capacitors, other than the SSD addon of course. I use a Memory Base 128, which works well; it uses AA batteries, but with good batteries, if you keep it plugged in as I do, I haven't lost files yet. I do replace the batteries about once a year, when they start running low, though. You need specific games in order to fully use the MB128, though, in order to copy files to and from your system's internal memory, since only a handful of games directly support it. I've got a list on my website here, if you're interested: http://www.blackfalcongames.net/?p=190 I cover the various save addons, which games have MB128 support, etc.

I also have a Tennokoe Bank (which still held a save last time I checked), but with the MB128 I really don't need it. Having to use specific games to transfer files is a bit of a pain, but overall I like it more, since some games can save to it directly and it holds so much.
Great to see you in this topic, this is some excellent information!
So, does the MB128 hold a save longer if you keep it plugged into the PCE? Or does that not affect battery life at all...

I have Popful Mail (two, actually), so I could just use that for the MB128.

Alright, I think I'll just buy that, then. But, man, all I really want is a non-volatile version of any PCE save mechanism. I love the form factor of the Ten no Koe card the most, but obviously the saving capacity and capabilities of the MB128 is also appealing.

So how much to spend on a core graphic with connections and controller? Every set on eBay is over $100.
Where did you ever end up with everything? I've been keeping an eye out for good prices with the CoreGrafx systems on eBay, so let me know if you're still interested.
 
Oct 25, 2017
149
Great to see you in this topic, this is some excellent information!
So, does the MB128 hold a save longer if you keep it plugged into the PCE? Or does that not affect battery life at all...
That's a good question. I will say, since I bought a MB128 in fall 2013, I have not lost any files on the unit. I have kept it plugged in to my Turbografx (well, to a TG16-to-PCE controller adapter cable attached to the system) ever since. Does the MB128 hold saves even if the batteries are dead if it is plugged in to a console that is off? That I do not know, but I haven't wanted to test it because it could, and probably would, result in my losing all my saves! It would be very interesting if it actually can hold saves when attached to a turned-off console that is plugged in, but I've always assumed that it probably can't and haven't wanted to lose all my files so I haven't tested that.

I have tested one thing, though: it does seem to hold saves while the console is on. I have removed the battery compartment from the MB128 (it uses a removable box for the four AAs) while my TG16 was on and left it for a while, and the saves were fine. Also there is a red light on the MB128 that turns on when the batteries are out and it's running on only wall power or its internal capacitor that supposedly can hold the saves for a half hour after the batteries run out, but I've only ever seen the light on when I take the batteries out and haven't lost files. I didn't unplug it or turn the console off for long, though, of course.

And as I said, with good batteries (i've mostly used Duracell Quantums, since those powercheck things on them are handy for a thing like this) they last a good while.
I have Popful Mail (two, actually), so I could just use that for the MB128.
Yeah, that'd work. The thing to know is that games that save your system's backup memory to a file on the MB128 do it like that -- they copy the 2KB system save to a block on the MB128. The 128-KB MB128 is broken up into 64 2KB blocks, each the same size as a system save file. You can only view what's on the MB128 with the utilities on those games that allow you to do that, and as I say in that article some games let you view what's on the MB128 but not back up your system to the MB128 (such as Brandish, a game I have)... and others let you back up to the MB128, but not view what's on the MB128 itself or save directly to it from the game itself (see Emerald Dragon). It's kind of weird.

More important, though, is something I probably don't make clear enough in that article -- whatever game you make the backup with, such as Popful Mail or in my case Emerald Dragon or Private Eye Doll.is the only way to view that memory backup. That is, each game makes its own exclusive files, so a memory backup from Emerald Dragon can't be read by Private Eye Doll, it just sees a file on the MB128 which it can't read.

Also, just like a Tennokoe Bank, the MB128 utilities don't let you copy individual save files back and forth. You're switching full 2KB banks in and out between the system and backup unit (Tennokoe Bank or MB128), not moving the save files themselves. That's just how it works on PCE/TG16. ... I should probably edit in explanations of these things into that article/list...

That said though, once you've got a game which lets you make backups it works great and is easy to use.

Alright, I think I'll just buy that, then. But, man, all I really want is a non-volatile version of any PCE save mechanism. I love the form factor of the Ten no Koe card the most, but obviously the saving capacity and capabilities of the MB128 is also appealing.
Non-volatile memory options would be great; actually. what about the Turbo Everdrives? Do they not support memory backup? I don't know myself, I don't have any Everdrives.
 

CeramicDragon

Member
Nov 10, 2017
542
Orange, CA
This is probably the best way to do things these days. I have a few HuCards in addition to a decent sized PCE CD collection. I've been thinking of posting a list of games that are affordable, yet still worth collecting, if anyone would have interest in that.

So, you have TWO systems now? That's awesome.



The newest revision has fixed all the noise and issues with the SSDS3. Should be a viable purchase without any issues now.



Great to see you in this topic, this is some excellent information!
So, does the MB128 hold a save longer if you keep it plugged into the PCE? Or does that not affect battery life at all...

I have Popful Mail (two, actually), so I could just use that for the MB128.

Alright, I think I'll just buy that, then. But, man, all I really want is a non-volatile version of any PCE save mechanism. I love the form factor of the Ten no Koe card the most, but obviously the saving capacity and capabilities of the MB128 is also appealing.



Where did you ever end up with everything? I've been keeping an eye out for good prices with the CoreGrafx systems on eBay, so let me know if you're still interested.
still looking
 
Oct 26, 2017
345
Regarding save data for PC Engine, I just ordered a refurbished Tennokue Bank from a reputable site in the UK. This guy will also take in you old banks and change the battery as a service. The bank shipped to me earlier this week and I’ll let ya’ll know how it is once I receive it.

https://www.tennokoe.co.uk/
 
Regarding save data for PC Engine, I just ordered a refurbished Tennokue Bank from a reputable site in the UK. This guy will also take in you old banks and change the battery as a service. The bank shipped to me earlier this week and I’ll let ya’ll know how it is once I receive it.
Thanks for keeping us posted. The saving situation is probably the most irritating part of the system, but that's the same with all retro systems at this point.

I think I'd probably try replacing it myself, but I have yet to see how the tabs are connected to the battery on the inside.

picked this import title yesterday
Aw, man, congrats! So amazing. Probably my current favorite vertical shooter on the system. Apologies to A Black Falcon and Nexzr - I'm still trying to let that game grow on me!

I'll keep an eye out and post some good deals here if I see them. I've seen some decent prices for base units - around $62-66.
 
Oct 26, 2017
345
picked this import title yesterday
Thanks for keeping us posted. The saving situation is probably the most irritating part of the system, but that's the same with all retro systems at this point.

I think I'd probably try replacing it myself, but I have yet to see how the tabs are connected to the battery on the inside.



Aw, man, congrats! So amazing. Probably my current favorite vertical shooter on the system. Apologies to A Black Falcon and Nexzr - I'm still trying to let that game grow on me!
Yup, I’ll definitely follow up on the Bank card.

Nice pick, David! Damn, I’d love to score a copy at that price.

But better than Soldier Blade... 🤔
 

CeramicDragon

Member
Nov 10, 2017
542
Orange, CA
Thanks for keeping us posted. The saving situation is probably the most irritating part of the system, but that's the same with all retro systems at this point.

I'll keep an eye out and post some good deals here if I see them. I've seen some decent prices for base units - around $62-66.
Yes, post a deal if you see it. Should I get a Core II or I? Any chance the SSD3 will drop in price?
 
Oct 25, 2017
149
Thanks for keeping us posted. The saving situation is probably the most irritating part of the system, but that's the same with all retro systems at this point.
Hey, at least it has some decent options that aren't reliant on being able to solder, unlike, say, consoles where all the games that save save to batteries soldered inside the carts...

I think I'd probably try replacing it myself, but I have yet to see how the tabs are connected to the battery on the inside.
The ASSEMbler thread I linked earlier has pictures of what it looks like inside.

Aw, man, congrats! So amazing. Probably my current favorite vertical shooter on the system. Apologies to A Black Falcon and Nexzr - I'm still trying to let that game grow on me!
Final Soldier is a good game, but it's nowhere near THAT great; I'd call it a B to B+ game, it's good but has some flaws. It's probably not even in my list of the top five best HuCard vertical-scrolling shmups. It's a good but not great game that's fun to play but a bit easy. That's not all bad, Super Star Soldier is a VERY difficult game and the step back is appreciated, but a bit more challenge than that might have been good. The game's good and fun but has always left me wanting a little more.

1. Blazing Lazers - My favorite game on HuCard on this console and one of the overall best including CD games and probably my overall favorite Compile game, Blazing Lazers is absolutely incredible.
2. Image Fight - Long under-rated in the West, Image Fight is actually a fantastic game. I didn't know much about this game back then either, but while it's not quite as great as R-Type, it's also fantastic.
3. Kyukyoku Tiger (aka Twin Cobra) - One of Toaplan's most popular games is, indeed, really great. It's hard of course and I haven't finished it, but it's great.
4. Soldier Blade - This third of the Soldier games on TG16 is the best of the three.
5. Cyber Core - This one isn't quite as well known as these others, but I really enjoyed this game. I usually don't like Xevious-style bombing in games all that much, but it works okay here, mostly.

Top honorable mentions include Final Soldier, Raiden, Super Star Soldier, Armed Formation F, Daisenpuu, Final Blaster, Galaga '88, etc, etc... there are too many to choose from!

If we add CD games, of course Nexzr is amazing and maybe my overall favorite shmup on the system. I also REALLY love Alzadick. It may only be a 2 or 5 minute timed score attack game, but I love it. High A score for that one from me. I like Avenger (which I liked enough to write a review of a few years ago) and Daisenpuu Custom quite a bit as well, among the vertical CD shmups that I have. And I don't have it because of the insane prices, but Ginga Fukei Densetsu Sapphire is an outstanding game. Etc, of course.


If Final Soldier is your favorite though, that's fine... though as with Reluctant-Hero, I do have to wonder, have you played Soldier Blade? Because it's pretty much Final Soldier but better -- better graphics, levels, music, everything.
 

Deleted member 1162

User requested account closure
Banned
Oct 25, 2017
3,680
Hey, at least it has some decent options that aren't reliant on being able to solder, unlike, say, consoles where all the games that save save to batteries soldered inside the carts...


The ASSEMbler thread I linked earlier has pictures of what it looks like inside.


Final Soldier is a good game, but it's nowhere near THAT great; I'd call it a B to B+ game, it's good but has some flaws. It's probably not even in my list of the top five best HuCard vertical-scrolling shmups. It's a good but not great game that's fun to play but a bit easy. That's not all bad, Super Star Soldier is a VERY difficult game and the step back is appreciated, but a bit more challenge than that might have been good. The game's good and fun but has always left me wanting a little more.

1. Blazing Lazers - My favorite game on HuCard on this console and one of the overall best including CD games and probably my overall favorite Compile game, Blazing Lazers is absolutely incredible.
2. Image Fight - Long under-rated in the West, Image Fight is actually a fantastic game. I didn't know much about this game back then either, but while it's not quite as great as R-Type, it's also fantastic.
3. Kyukyoku Tiger (aka Twin Cobra) - One of Toaplan's most popular games is, indeed, really great. It's hard of course and I haven't finished it, but it's great.
4. Soldier Blade - This third of the Soldier games on TG16 is the best of the three.
5. Cyber Core - This one isn't quite as well known as these others, but I really enjoyed this game. I usually don't like Xevious-style bombing in games all that much, but it works okay here, mostly.

Top honorable mentions include Final Soldier, Raiden, Super Star Soldier, Armed Formation F, Daisenpuu, Final Blaster, Galaga '88, etc, etc... there are too many to choose from!

If we add CD games, of course Nexzr is amazing and maybe my overall favorite shmup on the system. I also REALLY love Alzadick. It may only be a 2 or 5 minute timed score attack game, but I love it. High A score for that one from me. I like Avenger (which I liked enough to write a review of a few years ago) and Daisenpuu Custom quite a bit as well, among the vertical CD shmups that I have. And I don't have it because of the insane prices, but Ginga Fukei Densetsu Sapphire is an outstanding game. Etc, of course.


If Final Soldier is your favorite though, that's fine... though as with Reluctant-Hero, I do have to wonder, have you played Soldier Blade? Because it's pretty much Final Soldier but better -- better graphics, levels, music, everything.
Twin cobra is not that good on PCE or mega drive.

that's a game i can clear 1 loop no deaths in the arcade, it was one of my fav's. i felt it was butchered on the PCE.
 
Oct 25, 2017
149
I've been playing Daisenpuu Custom again recently. There are better shmups out there, but for some reason I keep coming back to this one... it's probably one of my most played shmups for the console. I know the HuCard version is more popular (and the MD version more than either, I think), but I like the CD version more than the HuCard; the CD music, added level, and three added bosses more than outweigh the reduced background graphical variety within stages, I think. I have both the HuCard and CD versions and almost always go to the CD version when I want to play the game.

Twin cobra is not that good on PCE or mega drive.

that's a game i can clear 1 loop no deaths in the arcade, it was one of my fav's. i felt it was butchered on the PCE.
That wasn't meant to be a comprehensive list, just one mostly based on games I have or have played a bunch of. You could mention others certainly, the PCE version of Tatsujin is pretty good for example... maybe not better than the Genesis version (unless you like your Toaplan games even harder than usual, it's ridiculously hard on PCE) but still great.

As for Twin Cobra, I really like the PCE version, but find the Genesis version hopelessly messed up. There are plusses and minues to each, though -- the Genesis one is more faithful to the arcade game, in AI, screen layouts, and such, but this hurts it too as you can't see anywhere near as far ahead, making the game MUCH harder than it should be. I can't deal with that and find it far too difficult as a result; you need to start shooting the powerup ships almost immediately to kill them, for example. Meanwhile, the PCE version has some changes that make it a bit easier (kind of the opposite of Truxton), including AI if I remember right, but I find this more good than anything -- on PCE you never have that problem you do on Genesis, since you can actually see the enemies coming as they adjusted their start points and such. Powerup ships are easy enough to kill like they should be, etc.

Of course the arcade version is better than either home port, but between the two I at least like the PCE one a lot more. I know some prefer the Genesis game, but I think its changes are worse. I got the PCE version not sure if I'd like it because of how frustrating I found the Genesis version, but I find it a lot more fun.
 
If Final Soldier is your favorite though, that's fine... though as with Reluctant-Hero, I do have to wonder, have you played Soldier Blade? Because it's pretty much Final Soldier but better -- better graphics, levels, music, everything.
Hm. It may indeed be Soldier Blade - I tend to get the Soldier series a bit mixed up.
I do know that I’m not a huge fan of Super Star Soldier, so Final Soldier would still rank highly for me.

Gotta love Blazing Lazers/Gunhed, too, of course!

What are your thoughts on Image Fight II, by chance? I had some very odd glitches or something with that game, so that didn’t help anything.