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How hard would it have been to make the SNES backward compatible with NES?

SNES NES backward compatible

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#51 high voltage OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 5:29 AM

UKs gaming magazine Edge mentioned the SNES is more 8bit than 16bit

#52 Crazy Climber ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 5:36 AM

Yeah but I have a tron cabinet behind me, and you have a warehouse, lol.

I WIN

Can't arguee that, playing Tron is much cooler than work...
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#53 Cortat G OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 5:36 AM

If it helps at all. They made an adapter the plugs into the cart slot on the SNES and it can play NES games using SNES controllers.
retro_port_123.jpg

#54 Crazy Climber ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 5:42 AM

16 bit computers like ST or Amiga were unknown?

I had an Amiga 500 before I had a SNES, was da bomb yo!!
I bet if my parents could take back one purchase it would have been the Amiga.
They debated it for what seemed forever then finally decided it would benefit us kids for school/etc
All we ever did with it was play games.....AWESOME GAMES!!!
I would love to have another Amiga 500, I foolishly sold mine about 10 years ago for no real reason :(

#55 godslabrat OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 7:21 AM

16 bit computers like ST or Amiga were unknown?


At the time the SNES came out, yes they were. We had a computer in the house, a Tandy 1000 HX that had been used for typing documents, and that was it. And it cost more than the GDP of Nicaragua, and had I even suggested replacing it with something gaming-related, I would have been sold to the gypsies. Besides, those computers didn't run Mario or Zelda, and I do believe I mentioned that Nintendo was the end-all-be-all of gaming. ;-)

#56 Crazy Climber ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 8:03 AM


16 bit computers like ST or Amiga were unknown?


At the time the SNES came out, yes they were. We had a computer in the house, a Tandy 1000 HX that had been used for typing documents, and that was it. And it cost more than the GDP of Nicaragua, and had I even suggested replacing it with something gaming-related, I would have been sold to the gypsies. Besides, those computers didn't run Mario or Zelda, and I do believe I mentioned that Nintendo was the end-all-be-all of gaming. ;-)

Well, I wouldn't go as far as unknown, they had a pretty big following but at least the way I remember it was 2 totally different crowds :) People actually thought of them as computers instead of giant gaming machines with calculators (which is what they were to the average person) I know some people actually used them for finance programs, modems or BASIC/etc but when talking my parents into it all I was really interested in was arcade perfect Dragon's Lair/Robocop/etc.. Not to mention, as you stated above, the price was insane for that stuff...

Also the main point you brought up....Super Mario Land was NOT available on a commodore and well, yeah, back then mario was a good example for the be-all-end-all of gaming. If Mario was in it, you had to have it, very few turds in the mario family :)

Another thing that really swayed my personal interest from Amiga back to 16 bit home systems was the loading times. Even with the extra RAM Dragons Lair was still a 8 disc game, hell, even a quick hack n slash like Sword of Sodan had some boring load times and 2 or 3 discs. I could rock some near arcade perfect ports on my SNES in a matter of seconds! Still pissed a proper Double Dragon port was never made, the SNES could have NAILED that one, wtf nintendo...(or should I say tradewest? Not sure who owned the rights to that one back then..)

#57 the.golden.ax OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 8:54 AM

If it helps at all. They made an adapter the plugs into the cart slot on the SNES and it can play NES games using SNES controllers.
retro_port_123.jpg


Yes, but can it play everything?

#58 twoquickcapri OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 11:26 AM

Actually the SNES seems more derivative because the SNES CPU is an extension of the NES one, more like the Wii to the GameCube. The Z80 is just tacked on to the Genesis as a coprocessor and is not related to the 68000.


I'm not talking CPU. The system itself. The Video and sound systems in the Genesis are based off the SMS. Its not B/C because there is two diferent systems in the Genesis, but because the Genesis chips are able to play SMS games.

#59 Crazy Climber ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 11:41 AM


If it helps at all. They made an adapter the plugs into the cart slot on the SNES and it can play NES games using SNES controllers.
retro_port_123.jpg


Yes, but can it play everything?

Looks like a shitty American knock off ;)
borat.jpg

#60 Rex Dart OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 11:42 AM

Still pissed a proper Double Dragon port was never made, the SNES could have NAILED that one, wtf nintendo...(or should I say tradewest? Not sure who owned the rights to that one back then..)


I guess Nintendo didn't want the SNES to be seen as "more NES" by re-releasing too many NES titles on it. But hey, at least Super Double Dragon is pretty great, right?

#61 Seob ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 12:58 PM

PS2 had a huge advantage because of the backward compatibility and Xbox and GameCube couldn't crack Sony's dominance (in-part) because of it.

The biggest advantage that the ps2 had was that it was for a time the cheapest dvd player on the market. And that's why the xbox and gamecube couldn't crack Sony dominance.

#62 Crazy Climber ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 12:58 PM


Still pissed a proper Double Dragon port was never made, the SNES could have NAILED that one, wtf nintendo...(or should I say tradewest? Not sure who owned the rights to that one back then..)


I guess Nintendo didn't want the SNES to be seen as "more NES" by re-releasing too many NES titles on it. But hey, at least Super Double Dragon is pretty great, right?

lol, oh man, I am soooo glad I skipped that one back then. I think videogamecritic puts it best...
http://videogamecrit...r_Double_Dragon
I remember the NES one wasn't all that great either, not super DD bad but still a let down. I used all the money I saved to buy that thing, was sold out everywhere and some little shitty video store had it for $45, price gouging bastards. Had to tap into the B-day money my Grandpa gave me and my Mom told me to tell him I bought a hat with it because "he didn't like those video games" Ran home to play it....what? No 2 player option? Its Double Dragon for Christs sake!! Not a terrible game but I am still amazed a proper arcade port was never made, that game RULED the arcades...I guess the genesis has the accolade release that is pretty true graphic/stage layout-wise but they got the gameplay and sounds all wrong, it's not very good...

#63 atarilovesyou OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 1:02 PM

....what, nobody liked my Billy Mays monologue? SHEESH! :grin:

#64 the.golden.ax OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 1:07 PM

....what, nobody liked my Billy Mays monologue? SHEESH! :grin:


If it had Hitler and pineapples it would have been okay.

#65 godslabrat OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 1:50 PM

....what, nobody liked my Billy Mays monologue? SHEESH! :grin:


It just makes me miss the real Billy that much more.

#66 Crazy Climber ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 1:53 PM

....what, nobody liked my Billy Mays monologue? SHEESH! :grin:

Billy_Mays(32).jpg

#67 atarilovesyou OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 2:04 PM


....what, nobody liked my Billy Mays monologue? SHEESH! :grin:

Billy_Mays(32).jpg


God Bless that man!

#68 Cortat G OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 4:02 PM

Yes, but can it play everything?


Probably not. :roll:

Looks like a shitty American knock off ;)
borat.jpg


Hahahahaha! :lol: :rolling: :lolblue:

#69 thegoldenband ONLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 4:41 PM

If it had Hitler and pineapples it would have been okay.


This makes me want to start a website where Joseph Goebbels reviews all of Elvis's films, and all the reviews simply say ^that.

#70 Bruce Tomlin OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 4:52 PM

Sega managed to include an entire SMS inside the Genesis, and it always sold for less than the SNES. Nintendo could have done it for even cheaper if the CPU was backward compatible. Even an adaptor like the Super Game Boy would have shut some complainers up.

Of course Sega made you pay extra for the cartridge slot. (And the card slot that like a dozen games used.) At least it ran almost all of the games, except the F-16 card, which used a TMS9918 video mode.

I have a Tri-Star module, but I'm pretty sure it's just a NoaC Famiclone, and doesn't use the SNES CPU.

Remember that the '816 is based on the 65C02 instruction set. I wonder if any NES games used the 6502 "undocumented" instructions? There's no BC that could fix that! At least by that time, everybody would have known about the 65C02 and would probably avoid them.

Basically, here are the main points:
* CPU needs to be BC. 65816 will run 65C02 but not 6502 undocumented instructions
* Cartridge slot needs to be BC. The 7800 did that well. The NES had that awful metric-spaced toaster piece of crap. The toaster part could be removed, but the metric spacing was uncool.
* Video chip needs to be BC. It needs to support the same video modes, and, oh wait, the NES has that dual bus in its cartridges, right?

Yeah, that would have been the sticky point. To keep BC with NES games, you would have to have the video chip bus in the cartridge, which clearly wasn't worth the extra cost in the SNES. The SMS had a standard one-bus cartridge, and it was pretty easy to just put a multiplexer in the chipset.

So basically, they would have had to go way out of their way to make the graphics ROMs in NES carts work, which means a lot of extra cost. I guess that's another thing to add to my list of bad things about the NES hardware design.

#71 atarilovesyou OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 17, 2012 11:23 PM

Sega managed to include an entire SMS inside the Genesis, and it always sold for less than the SNES. Nintendo could have done it for even cheaper if the CPU was backward compatible. Even an adaptor like the Super Game Boy would have shut some complainers up.

Of course Sega made you pay extra for the cartridge slot. (And the card slot that like a dozen games used.) At least it ran almost all of the games, except the F-16 card, which used a TMS9918 video mode.

I have a Tri-Star module, but I'm pretty sure it's just a NoaC Famiclone, and doesn't use the SNES CPU.

Remember that the '816 is based on the 65C02 instruction set. I wonder if any NES games used the 6502 "undocumented" instructions? There's no BC that could fix that! At least by that time, everybody would have known about the 65C02 and would probably avoid them.

Basically, here are the main points:
* CPU needs to be BC. 65816 will run 65C02 but not 6502 undocumented instructions
* Cartridge slot needs to be BC. The 7800 did that well. The NES had that awful metric-spaced toaster piece of crap. The toaster part could be removed, but the metric spacing was uncool.
* Video chip needs to be BC. It needs to support the same video modes, and, oh wait, the NES has that dual bus in its cartridges, right?

Yeah, that would have been the sticky point. To keep BC with NES games, you would have to have the video chip bus in the cartridge, which clearly wasn't worth the extra cost in the SNES. The SMS had a standard one-bus cartridge, and it was pretty easy to just put a multiplexer in the chipset.

So basically, they would have had to go way out of their way to make the graphics ROMs in NES carts work, which means a lot of extra cost. I guess that's another thing to add to my list of bad things about the NES hardware design.



Edited by atarilovesyou, Thu May 17, 2012 11:23 PM.


#72 Arkhan OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun May 20, 2012 7:58 PM

Basically, here are the main points:
* CPU needs to be BC. 65816 will run 65C02 but not 6502 undocumented instructions


It's interesting you bring this up, as it reminds me of a fellow PCE dev guy's stuff.

He emulates NES on the TG16... so he's emulating 6502 on 65C02. He's got Mega Man, Contra, and some other stuff working on there.

So, I wonder if many NES games use any undocumented instructions or not.




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