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A Black Falcon

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About A Black Falcon

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  1. I just converted the .cof file to a .cdi with Jiffi and then burned it in DiscJuggler (in Windows 10) and ... it works on my Jag CD! Awesome. As for the game, the concept is really, really cool. I like this kind of racing game a lot and this one looks and plays well. The only issue is that the game is really short, it feels like more of a techdemo than a game. What's here is awesome but it's very easy and I beat all the tracks in both gravity on and gravity off modes in about half an hour. Once you get used to the trick of how the controls work, that you have to let go of the accelerator to keep speeds above the speed you go by holding that button down, the game's easy and fun. So yeah it's short, but this is a little game by one person and having something that's this fun and nice looking on the Jag is awesome. It's always fantastic when Jag homebrews use graphics that actually push the hardware beyond Amiga/Atari ST-level stuff, as far as I've seen so far it's rare for a homebrew to see polygonal 3d like you do here! The tubes look cool and the game moves nicely fast. Oh, the music's great as well. That said though, it's definitely praise that playing this mostly made me want more -- best time saving (something Tube SE also needs!) to give you more to do in the game; maybe some kind of progression; more obstacles and tougher courses later on; maybe an option for multiple laps in the courses; etc. But anyway, what's here is quite fun, I enjoyed it.
  2. What happened is people like Best Electronics finally ran out of unsold new old stock Jag CDs a couple of years ago, so now all you have is the resale market... and that retro gaming resale market exploded in value industry-wide last year. The Jag CD was already quite expensive by 2019, and now it's gone well up above where it was then.
  3. One pretty interesting thing is that the one player and two player modes have entirely different level sets as far as I can tell, it's worth playing both even as one person just to go through the two player versions of the stages.
  4. Wouldn't something that plugs into the expansion port potentially do the job as well? I know I've seen variations on that idea mentioned on this forum a few times. I'd think that ouold get a lot more users than something that requires taking apart the system would. I mean, replacing a socketed chip is not hard since no soldering is involved, but would enough people want to do it?
  5. If we compare the older, RF-only consoles that I have, I'd say that the Atari 5200, Intellivision (Sears Super Video Arcade), and NES 2 have pretty good RF with minimal interference. The Odyssey 2's is also pretty good, and the Atari 2600 decent, with some stuff on screen but not much. However, the Colecovision and Atari 7800 have bad RF with heavy interference. This 7800 is the worst of them all, but I remember that before it broke back in like 2014 I only used my first 7800 on my CRT, because the HDTV I had at the time couldn't detect its signal at all or something... maybe it was just really bad interference but either way it was unusable on that TV. The Colecovision may have some kind of issues with its RFU port or something (though the system otherwise works great), but the 7800 has no excuse, both of the ones I have had just have bad RF. Is there a newer mod version that amplifies the audio? Because as much as I like the results in video quality (it looks great!), I would have to call this mod a faulty design if the audio is working as intended. It is clear that it was not designed for cartridge audio properly.
  6. I'm sorry, but I have to agree with the critics here; I find China Warrior to be a terrible game, and think that it would have been a very bad choice for packin! You want your packin to be a game people hopefully will like playing, which does not describe China Warrior for most, I think. Good graphics do not make a good game and that game is a textbook case showing that fact. Once you get past the huge sprites which do make a good first impression, I find the actual gameplay both boring and awful. In my opinion China Warrior is one of the worst games I own for Turbografx/PC engine, and I have a lot of games for the system now. Pushing this game more than the small amount they did would have been a big mistake, and while NEC were fans of making horrible decisions (seriously, they messed things up pretty badly...) at least they did get that one right. As for the actual TG16 pack-in, I actually like Keith Courage, it's a good game despite average graphics, but yeah, R-Type would have been a fantastic choice and definitely the best of their pack-in options early on. It's fantastic and shows off the system's power well. Otherwise, Legendary Axe would have been the best early option if they wanted the packin to be a platformer -- it's pretty good, a popular title that is definitely better than Keith Courage overall in both graphics and gameplay. Now, Bonk. Bonk was a perfect choice for mascot in the US in the '90-'94 timeframe that the TG16 was on the market here, because mascot platformers were THE genre then and Bonk was their mascot platformer. Bonk isn't as amazing as Super Mario World or Sonic the Hedgehog, but it's a solidly good classic platformer that is quite fun to play. Picking Bonk as their mascot was an easy choice and the right one. Bonk's Adventure has good graphics with bright, colorful environments and plenty of visual variety, and while the gameplay is simple it controls very well and the level designs are varied and well made. It's a great platformer in the upper tier for its time. Now, again, yes Bonk is much less innovative or original than those two aforementioned hits from Nintendo and Sega. As much as I do like Hudson's TG16/PCE platformers, I think that they failed to keep up with the way the genre was changing, and instead kept making more NES-styled platformers for years. There is a definite charm to that NES-like style, but it is more dated than the competition. Platformers were never Hudson's strongest genre, I think, and you see that over time. Hudson changed little in Bonk's sequels as a response to the shocks Mario World and particularly Sonic gave to the industry. The TG16 and SNES Bonk games change over time, but where Bonk's Adventure was an A-grade hit, by their last Bonk game that gen, Super Bonk 2 (Japan-only), the series was B-tier. If they were trying, I don't think Hudson succeeded at catching up to Nintendo and Sega's best in the platformer genre. The TG16 Bonk games are probably my favorite Hudson platformers; after that and some of their other TG16/PCE games it's probably Super Bonk (SNES) and Bomberman Hero (N64), plus Bomberman 64 (N64) if you count it even though it has no jumping. Those two games tried for some interesting things, in very different ways, but Hudson seems to have mostly abandoned platformers after that, unfortunately. Too bad. (In Japan as has been mentioned Bonk, aka PC Genjin, wasn't really the system's mascot, he was just the main character in one of its more prominent games. The mascot platformer wasn't as big of a deal in Japan as it was in the US -- remember, Sonic the Hedgehog was not a phenomenon there like it was here.)
  7. So after TailChao's successful and very generous repair, my 7800 and Ricki & Vicki are working better than ever now! Even more issues were found when he examined the board than the ones listed earlier in the thread, to repair the solder issue, restore RF audio, replace the broken regulator, replace two capacitors, and replace the TIA socket, since apparently the modder used a cheap socket and the chip was coming out after running for several hours... yeah, quite a lot. It's (almost) all great now, and I've played the game some and it's definitely good and quite impressive looking for the system. Only one issue remains now, and that is audio volume. So, for normal use with other systems, audio volume on my TV of maybe 20-30% is about right. For the 7800, post-repair, getting video from the S-Video port and audio from the combined composite jack, for games that use the system's internal audio, I need to go up to about 35%. That's still reasonable in other things, if a little loud sometimes. However, in Ricki & Vicki or Ballblazer, the two games I have with audio chips in the carts? In order to hear the music at anything louder than a barely perceptible to inaudible whisper, I need to turn the TV volume all the way up to about 60%! That's really too loud, audio starts to sound off that high. (Also, the volume buttons on my CRT TV's remote are broken, so I need to adjust volume on the TV itself, which is kind of a hassle -- it has this round dial for both channel and volume and it is hard to change the volume without also changing the channel. This isn't an issue when playing on my HDTV, but retro games do look best on the CRT...) Oh, and yes, I know about the volume knob inside the R&V cartridge, and turned it up all the way. It didn't help much, max volume is as I described, I need to double TV volume to hear anything. Sound effects are not affected by this problem, they play at the correct volume since they come from the console. So, I did some testing by hooking up the now-repaired RF jack. Well, the video picture quality from RF is hilariously terrible even beyond my worst expectations (I remember my old 7800 having bad video output, but I don't think it was quite THIS awful...), but the audio is nice and loud in all games and does not suffer from the Ricki & Vicki ultra-quiet-audio problem that the composite jack has. Everything sounds fine at 30-something percent volume. So, my next step will be to buy an RFU with added audio output jacks, so I can hopefully get the audio from the RF line and video from the S-Video mod. Hopefully that will fix the problem... what a hassle this system is! (I'm sure there is some way to internally mod the system to make this problem better, but this seemed like the simplest solution that should work.)
  8. So that regulator probably failed because the mod was badly installed with awful soldering? Beware ebay indeed. But it is much easier to just buy one there than, say, to find someone here to do a mod for me or something, and I never could install it myself, so I gave it a try... I guess you had to fix the shorts too, I presume? I should also mention that this mod also didn't do the updated mod that makes the AV port audio not super quiet, so (before sending the system for this check) I needed to like double TV volume in order to hear much of anything. Unfortunate. Maybe I should have tried to find someone here who could repair and av/s-video mod my other 7800, the one with the failed power button so it won't turn on... that one has the added (useless) bonus of having the expansion port on the back, something this one TailChao has at the moment doesn't. Oh well...
  9. Yeah, and that's the issue, the 1.1 million number is an interesting guess -- saying "maybe that 3.7 million was actually hardware + software combined, subtract the software number from that for the real hardware number of 1.1 million" -- but yeah, it doesn't make much sense, the resulting numbers are too low. Looking for a comparison around that amount of sales, the Atari 5200 is said to have sold about a million systems. I know this is only a resale snapshot, but right now there are 65 5200s for sale in the 'video game consoles, north america only' category, and 135 sold in that category. That's 200 total, a distinctly lower number than the 7800 and SMS numbers I mentioned earlier, 361 and 340 respectively. It sure looks to me like the 7800 should have sales in the SMS's range of 1.5 to 2 million, perhaps slightly above the SMS's total here in the US, and not the 5200's one million. The 7800 is more common than the 5200, it clearly sold better. (I like the 5200 more personally, but that's unimportant here...)
  10. So, after not having a working 7800 for several years after the power button on my old one failed (I can't solder much so I can't replace the switch), I finally got a new one a month ago or so, a s-video modded system from ebay. It works great, except for perhaps not using the updated version of the mod I see mentioned here since audio levels are extremely low when compared to my old console, I need to turn the volume well up. Oh well, that's not a big deal. There is one problem though, I bought a copy of this game recently and I would say that I'm very glad to get this quite interesting-looking title before copies run out, but... it doesn't work at all, it boots to a black screen and stays that way. This isn't some weird resolution issue, all other carts I have work first try if they are clean, including Tower Toppler. This is my only 7800 homebrew, but the 2600 homebrew games I have work, and all original carts for the 8900 of course. I see mention of this game using a pin on the cart slot that no other game uses, but why would that one pin have a problem while all of the other ones are fine? I can't see in the black plastic cover that covers the cart port pins really so I have no idea how I'd figure out what the problem is here, but I hope it can be figured out, I very much want to play the game...
  11. Where did those numbers from? because those aren't the numbers in the thread you linked; I remember those numbers well from when they were revealed, they add up to 3.7 million systems sold in the US, versus about 1.1 million in your numbers here. That's a big difference. 3.7 million always did sound somewhat implausibly high, particularly claiming so many sales in the first year (286,000!) when they hadn't even made that many systems, but where did you get those numbers from? I don't see any hint of them, in the threads you link. If 3.7 million is maybe believable but high, 1.1 million seems too low. https://atariage.com/forums/topic/144552-happy-25th-7800-sales-figures-attached/?do=findComment&comment=4510692 Wait, I got it -- you're subtracting software sales from what was previously reported as hardware sales to get the numbers in your post. Given how those "hardware" sales are higher than the software sales numbers, I get why you might do this, though if this has been discussed somewhere, that those numbers may include hardware + software instead of only hardware, I missed it. That's plausible I guess then, though I am skeptical that the SMS outsold the 7800 in the US... As for the Master System, the only estimate I've ever seen is that it sold between 1.5 and 2 million systems, which is quite believable and is within the range Sega stuff usually sold here, Genesis excepted. Modern evidence exists to suggest that the 7800 seems to have outsold the SMS in the US. For example, check ebay... anytime. Now, five years ago, whenever, the results are the same: if you search for "Atari 7800" and "Sega Master System" in the video game consoles category, searching North American listings only, you will see more 7800 listings than SMS listings. Right now, this search gets 153 for the 7800, and 67 for the SMS. If you add sold listings this gets closer, as right now ebay reports 208 sold North America listings for the 7800 versus 273 for the SMS, but even so the 7800 has a higher total, if not by quite as much. This gap in number of systems sold, with the 7800 consistently having higher sales numbers on ebay, has held up for years. I think this is definitely supporting evidence for that the 7800 outsold the SMS. And I doubt that this gap is because SMS owners are a lot more likely to hold on to their systems, the SMS is definitely not popular here. This lines up with what I've seen in person, too -- I see 7800s used around here quite a bit more often than I do SMSes. Sega released twice as many SMS games as Atari did 7800 games, but with its better name recognition and better-known titles at the time, the 7800 selling better despite this makes sense. For instance, as a somewhat irrelevant aside, I was born in the early '80s, but have absolutely no memory of even hearing about the existence of the Sega Master System during its life. Console gaming was the NES, pretty much. I did know of Atari, though. Now, regardless of how many actually sold it's clear that most of those 7800 owners mostly played 2600 games on their system and got only a few actual 7800 games, but those are still 7800 systems regardless of which games they were playing on them.
  12. It's looking great! I'll buy the game for sure, the gameplay looks good and the 5200 trakball is of course amazing. Two little questions though -- for versus mode will there be any display showing how many times each player has won? Also are single matches human vs. human only? Thanks. It's great to see a story mode though, unfortunately I'll mostly have to play the game single player.
  13. Bah, I figured something was wrong. If the modulator is converting composite to rf, it's weird that rf works with everything, including the half of the games that crash with the composite av cable. That's one strange kind of chip failure there. ... Why is finding a working TI99 so hard? I mean, I know I broke my first two worse accidentally, but neither one ever worked correctly -- the first has an iffy keyboard, and the second a really bad keyboard AND serious display (ram chip?) issues. And now this one works... but only in rf, av is half broken? Bah.
  14. So, some years ago I got a TI99/4A. I did a thread about it. A while later, however, I stupidly broke it by spilling water on it while it was running. The water got on my TI99 and Odyssey 2, but the O2 still works mostly fine (probably helped by its non-porous keyboard), while the TI99 had some crazy stuff display on the screen then died. I tried to let it dry out and such but it didn't help, it was dead. After waiting a while, earlier this year I finally decided I wanted a working TI99 again. However, my first attempt did not go great on that front -- it did get me some interesting games and accessories, but the system itself has a bad chip (probably that RAM chip failure issue?) and keyboard. You can't boot games because a lot of keys don't work, and it has major display problems. It was listed as "untested" which I was skeptical about of course, but the other stuff with it convinced me to get it anyway. So, I now have two broken TI99s. ... Following this I did some highly unadvised things which broke that second console further. Let's just say that now neither of those systems or power supplies work at all. ... yes, I tried the power supply from the water-damaged console on the second system and such. It seems to have broken it too. Whoops... I wouldn't have tried it if the thing worked properly, but it didn't wand I was curious, so... yeah, that was a mistake. Maybe there is someone who could fix this stuff but I definitely cannot. (Both systems and their power supplies are now in the basement, taking up space. I don't want to throw them away though...) Anyway, none of that is the point here, I have a question I'd appreciate help with. So, a few months ago I tried again, and got a tested and working TI99/4A. And it works, and even has a fully working keyboard! The graphics display correctly as well. Neither of my previous ones had a fully working keyboard, even that first one often had some of the keys not respond sometimes. That's quite nice. However, there is an issue -- so, I have the RFU that came with this system, and also a composite AV cable I had previously bought. (Note: this is a mono AV cable, yellow and white to the TI DIN plug.) And the composite cable works... with some games. With others, though, the screen goes white after about a second and stops functioning. The system is fine,though -- if I turn it off and on it runs normally, unless you have one of those games in and watch them fail to run again. Some games just don't work on AV. However, those same games work fine on the RFU... except of course the image quality isn't as good. This issue is consistent -- with some games this happens every single time, while with others it never does and they can be played normally on composite. So, is this a problem with the computer, or not? I don't remember having this issue on my first TI99/4A, but it's been long enough that I don't remember for sure. I have done some searching and haven't found anything about this problem. I'm thinking about finally adding to my little TI99 collection by getting a tape drive and maybe the nano-PEB or something, but before I go any farther with that I definitely want to figure out this display issue, I'd much rather use composite than RF if I can.
  15. In game 1 there is only one dreadnaught; this isn't an endless game, but one with an ending. The other game modes increase the number of dreadnaughts up to 100 in the top one. Well, difficulty 6 is 15, 7 1000... huge spike there! See the manual here on Atari Age. (It's also worth looking at for its awesome cover art. too... ) The Dreadnaught Factor is a pretty good game for the time, it's a nice early scrolling shmup. The first dreadnaught is really easy, but it gets challenging eventually in the harder modes.
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