Jump to content

Photo

Comprehensive Plug-and-Play Listing


114 replies to this topic

#26 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Thu Jul 8, 2010 6:20 PM

I have appended a new section to the first post in this topic. This section shows everything I know regarding the model numbers of what specific processors are used in which plug-n-play games. It's in the topic's first post since I have indefinite edit privileges on that post, allowing for future additions to the section. The section does not include any of the systems which are known to be binary-compatible with earlier hardware (the Atari Flashback 2/2+, the C64 DTV, and the Sega Genesis units from Radica Games; I'm no longer sure about the Sega Master System units), which, while using instruction sets from known processors, run on newly designed chips that thus have different model numbers.

The product names I am using mirror those used in my pnpgames.*.txt listings, minus any parentheticals (which generally just denote cosmetic variations). The "information source" column, when cross-referenced with the source legend, shows where I got the processor information for a given product. I should also note that the accelerometer-equipped products listed in the new section are not in the pnpgames.*.txt listings, since they are games controlled by body motion.

Looking at the data I have so far, it seems that the SPG110 was Sunplus' rendition of the NOAC concept. Over the years, there has been speculation that some plug-n-play game systems, including NOACs, may be Winbond-based, but I have not found any specific cases of Winbond-based plug-n-play games at this time, only Sunplus.

Naturally, this new processor data section is also being added to my website which aggregates all my AtariAge data contributions: http://pnp-info.angelfire.com/.

onmode-ky

P.S. I recently read about the method for getting into the debug mode of several Jakks Pacific TV Games systems. At the very first screen after turning on the unit, push up, press and hold the 'A' button, and then push down while still holding the button. That should get you to the first screen of the debug mode. I can confirm that this works for the Namco 2, Namco 3, and Capcom TV Games. The best part of the debug mode is probably the ability to hear all of each systems' effects/music sequences. For Namco 3 (Super Pac-Man), though, you can't get past the first screen, because there is no 'B' button on the unit; its debug mode seems to be from a later revision of Namco 2, which has a 'B' button.

#27 pboland OFFLINE  

pboland

    Stargunner

  • 1,608 posts
  • Location:Ohio

Posted Fri Jul 9, 2010 7:07 PM

I have appended a new section to the first post in this topic. This section shows everything I know regarding the model numbers of what specific processors are used in which plug-n-play games. It's in the topic's first post since I have indefinite edit privileges on that post, allowing for future additions to the section. The section does not include any of the systems which are known to be binary-compatible with earlier hardware (the Atari Flashback 2/2+, the C64 DTV, and the Sega Genesis units from Radica Games; I'm no longer sure about the Sega Master System units), which, while using instruction sets from known processors, run on newly designed chips that thus have different model numbers.

The product names I am using mirror those used in my pnpgames.*.txt listings, minus any parentheticals (which generally just denote cosmetic variations). The "information source" column, when cross-referenced with the source legend, shows where I got the processor information for a given product. I should also note that the accelerometer-equipped products listed in the new section are not in the pnpgames.*.txt listings, since they are games controlled by body motion.

Looking at the data I have so far, it seems that the SPG110 was Sunplus' rendition of the NOAC concept. Over the years, there has been speculation that some plug-n-play game systems, including NOACs, may be Winbond-based, but I have not found any specific cases of Winbond-based plug-n-play games at this time, only Sunplus.

Naturally, this new processor data section is also being added to my website which aggregates all my AtariAge data contributions: http://pnp-info.angelfire.com/.

onmode-ky

P.S. I recently read about the method for getting into the debug mode of several Jakks Pacific TV Games systems. At the very first screen after turning on the unit, push up, press and hold the 'A' button, and then push down while still holding the button. That should get you to the first screen of the debug mode. I can confirm that this works for the Namco 2, Namco 3, and Capcom TV Games. The best part of the debug mode is probably the ability to hear all of each systems' effects/music sequences. For Namco 3 (Super Pac-Man), though, you can't get past the first screen, because there is no 'B' button on the unit; its debug mode seems to be from a later revision of Namco 2, which has a 'B' button.


Wow! I haven't read this topic in a while. That is great that you put up a website. How would you like a lot more pictures for that website? I happen to have quite a few of the plug & play pics (a lot with screen shots) that I have gathered over the years. A lot of them also have text descriptions from the retails site of the time which tend to have the retail price as well. If you are interested, please let me know. Here's a pic of just some of the info I have on my computer:
PandP_folders.jpg

#28 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Sun Jul 11, 2010 7:50 AM

Wow! I haven't read this topic in a while. That is great that you put up a website. How would you like a lot more pictures for that website? I happen to have quite a few of the plug & play pics (a lot with screen shots) that I have gathered over the years. A lot of them also have text descriptions from the retails site of the time which tend to have the retail price as well. If you are interested, please let me know. Here's a pic of just some of the info I have on my computer:
PandP_folders.jpg


That's quite a large collection you have. I may take you up on your offer, but only for any particularly interesting images; I don't have the Web account space for a big archive, nor the interest, to be honest, in linking images for a huge number of systems. If you have anything you think is unusual or noteworthy, do send me a PM. What I currently have on the site, for example, are a pair of prototype shots and a trio of images showcasing the extreme stylistic differences of the Activision plug-n-play systems. I can't think of any specific images I'm looking for at the moment, but if you have anything that goes with an interesting caption, I'm game.

Have you considered creating a website to show off all those assets? :)

onmode-ky

#29 pboland OFFLINE  

pboland

    Stargunner

  • 1,608 posts
  • Location:Ohio

Posted Sun Jul 11, 2010 12:31 PM

Wow! I haven't read this topic in a while. That is great that you put up a website. How would you like a lot more pictures for that website? I happen to have quite a few of the plug & play pics (a lot with screen shots) that I have gathered over the years. A lot of them also have text descriptions from the retails site of the time which tend to have the retail price as well. If you are interested, please let me know. Here's a pic of just some of the info I have on my computer:
PandP_folders.jpg


That's quite a large collection you have. I may take you up on your offer, but only for any particularly interesting images; I don't have the Web account space for a big archive, nor the interest, to be honest, in linking images for a huge number of systems. If you have anything you think is unusual or noteworthy, do send me a PM. What I currently have on the site, for example, are a pair of prototype shots and a trio of images showcasing the extreme stylistic differences of the Activision plug-n-play systems. I can't think of any specific images I'm looking for at the moment, but if you have anything that goes with an interesting caption, I'm game.

Have you considered creating a website to show off all those assets? :)

onmode-ky

I have considered creating website but I have been using your list as a guide. I don't have pics of every P&P made but if I can use your guide as a base to make a website I would definitely put a website up. I would need your permission to use the info in your guide and I would give full credit as a contributor to the website if given.

#30 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Mon Jul 12, 2010 6:12 PM

I have considered creating website but I have been using your list as a guide. I don't have pics of every P&P made but if I can use your guide as a base to make a website I would definitely put a website up. I would need your permission to use the info in your guide and I would give full credit as a contributor to the website if given.


Sure, that sounds fine. I can direct visitors from my site to see your site if they're interested in images and details about specific systems, and you can direct your visitors to my site if they're interested in historical, analytical, and sometimes obscure data on the market. Or if they're looking for an FAQ on the pinball TV Game unit. . . .

Heh, yours already sounds like it will get more views than mine. :) Good luck putting up the site.

onmode-ky

#31 brojamfootball OFFLINE  

brojamfootball

    Dragonstomper

  • 710 posts
  • Location:SoCal

Posted Mon Jul 12, 2010 11:48 PM

I have considered creating website but I have been using your list as a guide. I don't have pics of every P&P made but if I can use your guide as a base to make a website I would definitely put a website up. I would need your permission to use the info in your guide and I would give full credit as a contributor to the website if given.


Sure, that sounds fine. I can direct visitors from my site to see your site if they're interested in images and details about specific systems, and you can direct your visitors to my site if they're interested in historical, analytical, and sometimes obscure data on the market. Or if they're looking for an FAQ on the pinball TV Game unit. . . .

Heh, yours already sounds like it will get more views than mine. :) Good luck putting up the site.

onmode-ky


I have a pretty dang decent collection of PNPs, a pretty dang decent camera, and would love to help. Short on time tonight, but I can get a basic list going pretty quickly, and send a pic or two for you to see if you're interested in more.

I'm subscribed to this thread, so you can just respond here no PM necessary--easier for starters.

#32 pboland OFFLINE  

pboland

    Stargunner

  • 1,608 posts
  • Location:Ohio

Posted Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:31 PM

I have considered creating website but I have been using your list as a guide. I don't have pics of every P&P made but if I can use your guide as a base to make a website I would definitely put a website up. I would need your permission to use the info in your guide and I would give full credit as a contributor to the website if given.


Sure, that sounds fine. I can direct visitors from my site to see your site if they're interested in images and details about specific systems, and you can direct your visitors to my site if they're interested in historical, analytical, and sometimes obscure data on the market. Or if they're looking for an FAQ on the pinball TV Game unit. . . .

Heh, yours already sounds like it will get more views than mine. :) Good luck putting up the site.

onmode-ky

Thanks, now I just need to see if I have the time myself to put all of this info up into a site.

#33 pboland OFFLINE  

pboland

    Stargunner

  • 1,608 posts
  • Location:Ohio

Posted Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:33 PM

I have a pretty dang decent collection of PNPs, a pretty dang decent camera, and would love to help. Short on time tonight, but I can get a basic list going pretty quickly, and send a pic or two for you to see if you're interested in more.

I'm subscribed to this thread, so you can just respond here no PM necessary--easier for starters.

I might need the help. I still need to go thru all the pics I've got and prep them for the website. Thanks for offering to help. :)

#34 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Tue Aug 31, 2010 12:43 AM

I will be attaching a second type of file to the first post in this topic from now on: in addition to the pnpgames.*.txt files which have been part of the post since 2005, there will now also be pnpgames_supplement.*.txt files. These files cover game systems that fall outside the restrictions placed on systems that are included in the normal pnpgames.*.txt files (e.g., systems that use accelerometer or infrared reflectivity inputs). Coverage for these systems is far from complete and is never expected to remotely approach completeness, due to the large number of such systems released in the past. What is presented here is primarily for illustration of the plug-n-play industry's shift toward this type of system since ~2008. As with the pnpgames.*.txt files, each successive listing contains all the information from earlier versions; the earlier versions are presented merely for historical interest.

The above paragraph was copied mostly word for word from an update I have made to this topic's first post. The first edition of the new supplement file is now attached to that post, and I have also added some new data points into the CPU data table in that post. Naturally, all of this is also reflected in my PnP Info website.

onmode-ky

#35 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Sat Nov 20, 2010 5:08 PM

I thought I should call attention to the recent flood of data into the first post in this topic. Along with a minor 2010 update to the Jakks Pacific packaging history section, there has been a sizable addition to the data in the plug-n-play processors section. Now, it has data on products from every year from 2004 through 2010, so if you've ever been curious about what CPUs (microcontrollers, really) have been in use in plug-n-play systems over the years, that table is your resource.

The same update has also been done for my PnP Info website. From the site, here is some additional information on the CPU data update (with a minor edit for context's sake):

Some of the Sunplus GPAC800 entries in the [CPU data table] have Generalplus names beside them, "GPL16250," in parentheses. These are products where my source(s) identified them specifically as using the noted Generalplus chips; however, I am primarily labeling them as GPAC800s due to the GPL16250 being basically equivalent to the GPAC800. Similarly, for systems where the information source indicates they are based on the Sunplus PAC300, a chip essentially equivalent to the Sunplus SPG240, I have primarily labeled them as SPG240s, with "PAC300" noted alongside in parentheses.

onmode-ky

#36 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Fri Dec 10, 2010 7:19 PM

I've recently learned a massive amount about various aspects of the plug-n-play development scene (from back when it was more or less booming). So, I thought I'd share some of the new information here.

First, about Jakks Pacific's TV Games' GameKeys: several years ago, I wrote a post here at AtariAge which summarized what GameKeys had been released and for what TV Games systems. More recently, I have learned that several others were developed but not released or were in development when the call from above came to cancel them, due to the market failure of the GameKey concept. Here are the unreleased, possibly unfinished GameKeys I know:

- Dragonball Z (said to contain "an improved fighting game and a puzzle game")
- Fantastic 4 (canceled)
- Winnie the Pooh (said to double the total number of games on the Winnie the Pooh TV Game system)

I may as well list the unreleased-but-at-least-partly-finished TV Games systems I know of, too:

- Midway (included Joust, Defender, Sinistar, Stargate and Toobin'; the Mortal Kombat TV Game was a spin-off of this project)
- Capcom (a second Capcom TV Game that included Mega Man and Section Z)
- PGA Tour Golf II
- Tecmo (included Mighty Bomb Jack, Solomon's Key, Tecmo Bowl, Tecmo Basketball, and Fire 'N Ice)
- Pokémon
- Brain Surge (ESRB lists this as Super Brain Surge)

The Midway system used Digital Eclipse's "Meta-Emulation" technology (details at Jeff Vavasour's site), except for Toobin'. Incidentally, to answer the old question of whether the EA Sports TV Game system (which contained NHL 95 and either Madden 95 or FIFA 96, depending on region) emulated the Sega Genesis: the original M68000 Genesis assembly code for these games was translated into μnSP assembly for the SPG110 chip in the TV Game, through a tool developed by project co-lead engineer John Harris. If you're aware of the differences between the two processors' architectures, you should be quite impressed.

I also know of a few unreleased, Sunplus-based plug-n-play projects commissioned by Hasbro and MGA, but details on those are scant. In addition, I know of some other unreleased, Sunplus-based projects, for a music education system and a movie theater group game system.

Other information I recently obtained includes some details about the memory types and capacities used in several plug-n-play systems. In the TV Games line, most systems seem to have contained 2 MB of ROM for game assets and, if they had game save capacity, 4 Kbits of EEPROM. There were a few exceptions, though. Here are some that I know:

- Mortal Kombat (6 MB ROM, 256 KB extra RAM for swapping graphics data during mid-match opponent character switch)
- Shrek (well, Shrek and Over the Hedge; 4 MB ROM)
- High School Musical (non-deluxe model; 8 MB ROM)
- Ultimotion Disney Fairies/Sleeping Beauty (0 ROM, 64 MB NAND, 8 MB SDRAM, 16 Kbits EEPROM)
- Ultimotion Playhouse Disney (0 ROM, 64 MB NAND, 8 MB SDRAM, 16 Kbits EEPROM)
- VMIGO Spider-Man (TV Game portion: 8 MB ROM, 256 KB SRAM, 16 Kbits EEPROM)

My digging has also uncovered more in the way of debug codes for a few Jakks Pacific TV Games systems. Here is a summary that includes earlier debug mode discoveries:

- Namco Ms. Pac-Man (both wired and wireless models; joystick up, press-and-hold 'A' button, joystick down)
- Tele-Doodle (easter egg: joystick up, press-and-hold button, joystick clockwise back to up, release button, joystick counterclockwise back to up)
- Care Bears (joystick up, joystick clockwise back to up, press 'A' button while joystick still up)
- Capcom (joystick up, press-and-hold 'A' button, joystick down)
- Namco Super Pac-Man (joystick up, press-and-hold 'A' button, joystick down)
- Namco Retro Arcade featuring Pac-Man (joystick up, press-and-hold 'A' button, joystick down)

Lastly, some technical tidbits: in the Sunplus SPG2xx line, the oft-used SPG240 seems to be the most cost-effective chip, while the SPG220 was (at least at its time) the "deluxe" variant. The differences lie in features which a given product may or may not actually need, like I/O lines and number of sound channels. As for the "PAC300" name that describes the same chip as "SPG240," I believe that name was assigned to the massive batches of SPG240 ordered by Jakks Pacific, to differentiate from other firms' orders.

So . . . was that enough text? You may let your eyes recover now. I'll be updating my PnP Info website with this data shortly.

onmode-ky

#37 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Thu Apr 21, 2011 1:52 PM

The ESRB ratings database turns out to contain a rare glimpse into the world of unreleased plug-n-play systems. Games that are rated by the ESRB are at least complete enough for the publisher to submit gameplay footage demonstrating the titles' "pertinent content," as defined by the ESRB. Therefore, any unreleased title appearing in the database is at least in a nearly complete state, or perhaps even entirely finished by the developer. However, the database's entries are not entirely reliable; at least, some of them contain information contrary to other sources or even, sometimes, other entries in the database itself (that is, I have seen duplicate entries, sometimes under slightly different names, and entries with names indicating alternate release strategies). Also, some of what the ESRB has in its plug-n-play category does not normally fall under that term, like games downloaded directly to a TV. Still, if you can find your way through the irrelevant data, then you can discover a few plug-n-play games that were produced but never saw the light of release day. As it turns out, the vast majority of these were entries in Jakks Pacific's GameKey expansion cartridge line, the sole exceptions being their Tecmo and Super Brain Surge TV Game systems. Obviously, Jakks was eager to push the GameKey concept, but they must have encountered resistance at retail.

These are the unreleased plug-n-play game systems recorded in the ESRB ratings database (presumably listed in chronological order, from oldest to most recent):

Rated Title --- Rating --- Content Descriptors || Other Notes

Midway Gamekeys - Joust/Sinistar --- E --- Mild Violence || This is listed at the ESRB as a GameKey, but there was never a Midway base unit into which GameKeys could be plugged. The contents of this and the other Midway GameKey listing were likely originally planned for a standalone unit, based on developer commentary.

Midway Gamekey - Defender/Toobin --- E --- Animated Blood, Mild Violence || This is listed at the ESRB as a GameKey, but there was never a Midway base unit into which GameKeys could be plugged. The contents of this and the other Midway GameKey listing were likely originally planned for a standalone unit, based on developer commentary.

Tecmo TV Games --- E --- No Descriptors

Batman TV Games GameKey --- E10+ --- Cartoon Violence

Star Wars GameKey-Catamaran Strike/Coruscant Fire Patrol --- E --- Fantasy Violence || Not to be confused with the released Star Wars GameKey.

Dragon Ball Z GameKey - Butoretsuden 2/Capsule Conquer --- E10+ --- Cartoon Violence

Fantastic Four Gamekey --- E --- Fantasy Violence

Wheel of Fortune TV Games Gamekey Refill I --- E --- No Descriptors

Wheel of Fortune TV Games Gamekey Refill II --- E --- No Descriptors

Jeopardy TV Games Gamekey Refill I --- E --- No Descriptors

Jeopardy TV Games Gamekey Refill II --- E --- No Descriptors

Nicktoons Gamekey - Creature Capture/Bumper Car Rally --- E --- Mild Cartoon Violence || Not to be confused with the released Nicktoons GameKey.

Dora the Explorer Activity GameKey --- EC --- No Descriptors || Not to be confused with the released, E-rated Dora the Explorer GameKey.

Star Wars Classic Key-Imperial Gunner/Escape from Cloud City --- E10+ --- Mild Fantasy Violence

Capcom GameKey-Gunsmoke/Mega Man --- E10+ --- Mild Violence || The games listed in this entry's title conflict with other data on what was to be in a subsequent Capcom TV Games product. Also, its being listed as a GameKey conflicts with data indicating it was to be a standalone system.

Star Wars Classic Gamekey-Red leader/ Battle of Endor --- E10+ --- Mild Fantasy Violence || The games listed in this entry's title were later included in the Star Wars Original Trilogy TV Game system.

Care Bears GameKey - Champ's Cloud Fishing / Cheer Bear's Umbrella Drop / Friend Bear's Castle Maze --- E --- No Descriptors

Winnie the Pooh GameKey --- E --- No Descriptors

Super Brain Surge - TV Game --- E --- No Descriptors

Note: this data might be easier to read once I add it in tabular form to my PnP Info website.

#38 donssword OFFLINE  

donssword

    Chopper Commander

  • 152 posts
  • Location:Richmond, VA

Posted Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:16 PM

The GameKeys were a mess from the get-go:

  • they were console locked--you could only use the GameKey on the specific pad it was made for. You could not put a Disney Princess GameKey into a Disney Mickey pad.
  • they were really damn fiddly. They came with lots of warnings about being careful to have the power off, etc. And, when you did get them in, they didn't always work--they were like Activision 2600 carts where sometimes they would work, and sometimes you had to fiddle, and fiddle, and fiddle with them to get them to work.

These 2 features alone made them "feel" broken, especially to a gen of kids who had been plugging very durable GBA games into GBA handhelds.

This is the Disney Plug N Play I have--I bought it at Walmart years ago:
Disney Plug it in & Play TV Super Value Mega Pack with 2 extra Game Keys
http://www.amazon.co...ASIN=B000E80J04

The controller has: Uncle Scrooge's Money Bin Escape, Mowgli's Fruit Masher, Donald's Spinning Top, Minnie's Cake Factory, and Goofy's Wiseacre Farm.

The GameKeys have Sport Tennis, Sports Bowling, The Riches of Agrabah, Disney Googy's Underwater Adventure, and Disney Face Chase.

#39 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Wed May 4, 2011 12:25 AM

I need to revise what I said earlier regarding the conflicting data concerning the unreleased second Capcom TV Game, having gotten some more data, which depicted it as a project that evolved quite a bit in its intended presentation:

The story behind the second Capcom TV Game seems to have been rather convoluted, as parts of it, including Gun.Smoke, may have originally been destined for the first Capcom TV Game, and it appears two separate studios worked on the component games in this project. At some point, it was spun off into a separate project, and it seems it may have been planned for release as a GameKey expansion cartridge (for which there is an ESRB rating) and as a standalone system at different times during its development. What is certain: plug-n-play versions, most likely running on the Sunplus PAC300, of Mega Man, Section Z, and Gun.Smoke were developed for the TV Games line but never saw release in any form factor.

Also, I've attached pnpgames_supplement.20110504.txt to the initial post of this topic (some data backfilling; no new products in this update of the file) and added some more processor data to that post as well. For a full accounting of what I'm updating, I'll refer readers to the revision history section of my PnP Info website (since the edits/additions are going into the site as well as here).

donssword, about the GameKeys being locked to specific models of TV Game only, that was a licensing issue; it was what the IP holders wanted. It does seem odd that Disney and Disney Princess ended up as separate branches, but I guess that was what Disney told Jakks Pacific to do.

onmode-ky

#40 S1500 OFFLINE  

S1500

    River Patroller

  • 4,791 posts
  • Location:Twin Cities

Posted Thu May 5, 2011 11:46 AM

onmode, some constructive criticism:

Your website, though well-researched, is a gigantic wall of text. Viewers to the site really don't care much about the revision history of individual entries to an ad-hoc database. They don't. I think they would be more interested in some quick overview or review, and pictures.

This site is like reading tax records.

#41 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Sat May 7, 2011 8:11 AM

I get what you're saying, and I agree, too. It would be awesome if my site had both an abundance of data and a killer presentation, with descriptions, pictures, and screenshots for everything, and all of it running on a relational database backend (after all, see my username). Something like IPDB.org or Arcade-Museum.com. However, my strength--aside from architecting and administering a hypothetical database--is in the researching and interviewing; I'm ill-equipped to go beyond basic HTML and even worse off as far as images. I'd be open to collaborating with someone else (with their own Web space) to cross-link with their resources, but building a nicer front end on my own site would be a bit of a stretch. So, yes, it would be nice to have a slick-looking one-stop shop serving all your plug-n-play content needs, but on my own, I'm only able to offer some shelves of specialty content you won't [easily] find anywhere else.

However, I'll see what I can do about adding descriptions, at least for the retro collections. I've had more than one occasion of trying to remember what classic games are in which plug-n-play systems, only to recall that I've never written any of that down in my materials. . . . Of course, this would only add to the wall-of-text effect.

By the way, the revision history is really only for my own benefit. I'm accustomed to writing verbose comments in source control environments. I just linked to it in my previous post because I was feeling too lazy to type out a summary here of all the new stuff.

onmode-ky

#42 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Mon May 16, 2011 2:21 PM

I've added a new page to my PnP Info website which I think will be of more use and of more interest to most AtariAge folks than a lot of the content on the main page. It's a page that compiles a large number of the various retro-gaming plug-n-play systems and lists all of the retro games included in each one. The only major manufacturer not represented is AtGames; they have released and continue to release many models of Sega game collections, with slightly different game lists for each, and I decided it was too much trouble to sort out which is which. Aside from them, I don't think I've missed any major makes.

My site's main page has also had a small update, the major changes being some additional information on the unreleased Midway TV Game, an entry on the unreleased TV Games conversion of Jr. Pac-Man, and a new background color for certain parts of tables.

onmode-ky

#43 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Mon Sep 12, 2011 7:43 PM

I spotted this new entry in the ESRB database earlier today. Outside of the Flashback 2+ and AtGames' controversial Sega and (now) Atari efforts, the retro plug-n-play games scene has been extremely quiet since 2008, and the last one that wasn't just a reorganization of previous plug-n-play systems came out in 2006 (well, unless you count Big Buck Hunter and Golden Tee Golf as retro). Given that the market as a whole has been trending downward, I'm honestly a little surprised to see this as an upcoming release, but there it is.

If your clicking finger is too tired, here is what it says (it's an "E for Everyone" rating assigned for Jakks Pacific, for a plug-n-play game system):

SPACE INVADERS - retro arcade

This is a collection of ten classic arcade games including Space Invaders, Alpine Ski, Bubble Bobble, and Tube-It. In one game (i.e., Legend of Kage), players traverse through side-scrolling levels and use throwing stars to dispatch waves of ninjas that jump across the screen; enemies blink and disappear when defeated.


That the publisher is Jakks Pacific is not actually visible in this link, but it's visible in ESRB database search results. There was a previous Taito Space Invaders plug-n-play system, incidentally, by Radica Games in 2004 (prior to Mattel buying them up), which included Qix, Lunar Rescue, Phoenix, and Colony 7. I wonder if Jakks' new system will have any repeats aside from Space Invaders.

Regarding those five unnamed games, it's too much to hope for Darius or Ninja Warriors (triple-wide games), but I'd be interested to see some of the games that were in Bandai Namco's Japan-only Taito Nostalgia plug-n-plays from 2006 (in addition to Legend of Kage, that is), particularly Slap Fight. What's really interesting in the ESRB description is the mention of Tube-It, which is from 1993, far newer than any previous Taito arcade game released in a plug-n-play system. Might the 5 unmentioned games include contemporary titles . . . like Metal Black or Darius Gaiden? After all, with today's Generalplus MCUs supporting NAND ROMs and SDRAM, there's a lot more capacity available. However,
Tube-It ran on simpler, slower hardware than either of those two titles, so it's not a good indicator.

Perhaps this is a better question: is this the beginning of a revival in retro plug-n-play, or will it be just a one-off appearance? Personally, I don't see this being such a huge sales success that it will be followed by more, but I also know jack squat about consumer tendencies. Besides, it's perfectly conceivable that this is only part of a retro blitz Jakks Pacific might be planning.

onmode-ky

#44 raindog OFFLINE  

raindog

    Stargunner

  • 1,717 posts
  • Location:upstate NY, USA

Posted Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:44 PM

Lots of people have smartphones to play games on now, but there's always a market for something cheap and simple you don't feel bad about giving your 5-year-old to help the TV babysit him. It'll never be as big as it was around the turn of the century, but these things have always been about games that are a couple decades old, and now the early 90s is a couple decades old.

Unfortunately, the early 90s is when the transformation of video games from casual diversions of a few minutes to sagas of many hours and/or many buttons reached fruition, so at some point they're going to run out of 20-year-old games that are a good fit for a huge joystick and a couple of buttons.

I'll pick this up if and when it shows up on store shelves, just because it's nice to see they still seem to think the big draw is the oldest game in the set. Now that people of my generation are starting to become grandparents, maybe we'll see another wave of slightly more faithful recreations of the early stuff (with higher price tags but still mass-market) in a few more years. I'll probably buy those too, if for no other reason than because I lost a bunch of my PnPs (including all the Radica ones in their lame paper and styrofoam cases) in a flood earlier this year.

#45 TrekkiELO OFFLINE  

TrekkiELO

    Moonsweeper

  • 332 posts
  • Location:SoCal

Posted Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:28 PM

I spotted this new entry in the ESRB database earlier today. Outside of the Flashback 2+ and AtGames' controversial Sega and (now) Atari efforts, the retro plug-n-play games scene has been extremely quiet since 2008, and the last one that wasn't just a reorganization of previous plug-n-play systems came out in 2006 (well, unless you count Big Buck Hunter and Golden Tee Golf as retro). Given that the market as a whole has been trending downward, I'm honestly a little surprised to see this as an upcoming release, but there it is.

If your clicking finger is too tired, here is what it says (it's an "E for Everyone" rating assigned for Jakks Pacific, for a plug-n-play game system):

SPACE INVADERS - retro arcade

This is a collection of ten classic arcade games including Space Invaders, Alpine Ski, Bubble Bobble, and Tube-It. In one game (i.e., Legend of Kage), players traverse through side-scrolling levels and use throwing stars to dispatch waves of ninjas that jump across the screen; enemies blink and disappear when defeated.


That the publisher is Jakks Pacific is not actually visible in this link, but it's visible in ESRB database search results. There was a previous Taito Space Invaders plug-n-play system, incidentally, by Radica Games in 2004 (prior to Mattel buying them up), which included Qix, Lunar Rescue, Phoenix, and Colony 7. I wonder if Jakks' new system will have any repeats aside from Space Invaders.

Regarding those five unnamed games, it's too much to hope for Darius or Ninja Warriors (triple-wide games), but I'd be interested to see some of the games that were in Bandai Namco's Japan-only Taito Nostalgia plug-n-plays from 2006 (in addition to Legend of Kage, that is), particularly Slap Fight. What's really interesting in the ESRB description is the mention of Tube-It, which is from 1993, far newer than any previous Taito arcade game released in a plug-n-play system. Might the 5 unmentioned games include contemporary titles . . . like Metal Black or Darius Gaiden? After all, with today's Generalplus MCUs supporting NAND ROMs and SDRAM, there's a lot more capacity available. However,
Tube-It ran on simpler, slower hardware than either of those two titles, so it's not a good indicator.

Perhaps this is a better question: is this the beginning of a revival in retro plug-n-play, or will it be just a one-off appearance? Personally, I don't see this being such a huge sales success that it will be followed by more, but I also know jack squat about consumer tendencies. Besides, it's perfectly conceivable that this is only part of a retro blitz Jakks Pacific might be planning.

onmode-ky


Man, I sure hope that Jungle Hunt, Wild Western, Zoo Keeper, Space Dungeon, then most especially Elevator Action are also apart of the 5 other yet to be revealed games on their Plug-and-Play here because if the latter is I'll be purchasing this right when it hits store shelves!

:thumbsup:

Rick

Edited by TrekkiELO, Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:29 PM.


#46 donssword OFFLINE  

donssword

    Chopper Commander

  • 152 posts
  • Location:Richmond, VA

Posted Wed Sep 14, 2011 10:54 PM

onmode-ky re: locked by licensing. Sure, I assumed as much. That doesn't make it suck any less though.

On the Disney Super Value Mega Pack, I have to say the base unit's games Uncle Scrooge's Money Bin, Minnie's Cake Factory, and Goofy's Wiseacre Farm (my fave) are all outstanding and worth trying to find for them alone if you are a Disney fan. The other game's are good too, but I found the key games to just not be "all that." The Tennis is nice, but it plays out a full match and is not good for short bursts.

Edited by donssword, Wed Sep 14, 2011 10:55 PM.


#47 donssword OFFLINE  

donssword

    Chopper Commander

  • 152 posts
  • Location:Richmond, VA

Posted Wed Sep 14, 2011 10:57 PM

Is there any website that congregates reviews of these plug-n-plays?

I know that opinions on these can be divisive--I often find myself disagreeing with some of the old school MAME purists on what makes an acceptable p-n-p port, but I would really like to hear what people are liking and hating.

#48 Wntermute OFFLINE  

Wntermute

    Moonsweeper

  • 473 posts
  • Location:Phoenix, AZ

Posted Thu Sep 15, 2011 11:33 AM

I'm not sure if the Sega Genesis stick I have is the one you list as "Sega Genesis Arcade Fightstick", but you may want to note which of the AtGames Genesis devices have SD card slots. Mine definitely does.

It's this model:
http://www.buy.com/p.../218054715.html

They offer a handful of extra games here:
http://www.mugaatgames.net/Home.php

#49 Rex Dart OFFLINE  

Rex Dart

    Quadrunner

  • 6,658 posts
  • NO CASH VALUE
  • Location:Austin, TX

Posted Thu Sep 15, 2011 11:36 AM

I'm not sure if the Sega Genesis stick I have is the one you list as "Sega Genesis Arcade Fightstick", but you may want to note which of the AtGames Genesis devices have SD card slots. Mine definitely does.

It's this model:
http://www.buy.com/p.../218054715.html

They offer a handful of extra games here:
http://www.mugaatgames.net/Home.php


Woah, any idea if those will run on a sega genesis w/ everdrive, or if they're written specifically for the atgames hardware?

#50 onmode-ky OFFLINE  

onmode-ky

    Dragonstomper

  • Topic Starter
  • 835 posts

Posted Wed Sep 21, 2011 7:32 PM

Unfortunately, the early 90s is when the transformation of video games from casual diversions of a few minutes to sagas of many hours and/or many buttons reached fruition, so at some point they're going to run out of 20-year-old games that are a good fit for a huge joystick and a couple of buttons.

Well, there are plenty of 70s/80s/90s arcade titles that have not appeared on plug-n-play game systems, so if Jakks' new Taito stick actually does lead to a retro plug-n-play revival, there is still a wealth of material to mine. And even if they do start to lean toward console titles, the fact that these units have save data capability means long-form games are also doable.

I'll pick this up if and when it shows up on store shelves, just because it's nice to see they still seem to think the big draw is the oldest game in the set.

Space Invaders is the most famous Taito IP, after all.

Man, I sure hope that Jungle Hunt, Wild Western, Zoo Keeper, Space Dungeon, then most especially Elevator Action are also apart of the 5 other yet to be revealed games on their Plug-and-Play here because if the latter is I'll be purchasing this right when it hits store shelves!

Elevator Action actually came to mind for me as well, mostly because a new game in the series just hit the HD consoles' download services. However, I don't think it's in this unit, because surely the ESRB ratings summary would have included references to shooting other people in that game. After all, it already talks about using throwing stars to kill enemies in Legend of Kage.

On the Disney Super Value Mega Pack, I have to say the base unit's games Uncle Scrooge's Money Bin, Minnie's Cake Factory, and Goofy's Wiseacre Farm (my fave) are all outstanding and worth trying to find for them alone if you are a Disney fan.

What's the gameplay like in those?

Is there any website that congregates reviews of these plug-n-plays?

Not to my knowledge. Back when these were just starting to rise in popularity, IGN had reviews of some of Jakks' products, but that stopped before 2004 was over, I think. Your closest bet is probably Amazon.com user reviews, but then you have the problem of some reviewers being even more clueless and/or unqualified than "real" reviewers. You might get better results searching here at the AtariAge forum for reviews.

I did spot a fairly new Wikia site with some coverage of a handful of models . . . but the writing style leads me to believe it's written by a kid. So, quality/accuracy of the evaluations may be lacking.

I'm not sure if the Sega Genesis stick I have is the one you list as "Sega Genesis Arcade Fightstick", but you may want to note which of the AtGames Genesis devices have SD card slots.

Thanks for the suggestion. The next update of my pnpgames.*.txt files will include some new indicators:

em = runs original binaries on an emulator
na = runs original binaries natively on the hardware (absence of both "em" and "na" means the game was ported/recreated for the new hardware)
sd = includes an SD card slot
hh = handheld system (i.e., has an LCD screen while also supporting TV output)
js = joystick controller (to distinguish from "hh" models).

Also, your Genesis stick, assuming you mean it's like an arcade joystick-and-buttons panel, is the Fightstick I listed.

Woah, any idea if those will run on a sega genesis w/ everdrive, or if they're written specifically for the atgames hardware?

From looking at the screenshots, those aren't Genesis games. They're either native to the unit's ARM CPU or run in another emulator.

There's actually an AtGames Sega-brand device which seems to play cell phone games Sega made a few years ago. I don't remember which specific phone platform it ran, but the downloadable games for the device are here.

onmode-ky




0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users