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Omegamatrix

208 in 1 Multicart

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Hi, all of youse wonderful peoples. :D

 

 

Today I would like to talk about multicarts, specifically the 208 in 1 PAL multicart of Taiwanese origin. How do I know it came from Taiwan? Well it has "Made in Taiwan" molded into the back of the cart. First some pics:

 

post-7074-1218154090_thumb.jpgpost-7074-1218154145_thumb.jpg

post-7074-1218154179_thumb.jpg

 

 

It comes in what is known as an V-Case shell, named after the stark "V" in the middle of the top ridges, on the frontside of the cart. The multicart itself is fairly heavy from all the IC's that I see by peeking inside the cart through a narrow gap at the bottom. I have never opened it up though... I'm curious as Hell but don't have it in me to wreak the label. Maybe one day. Since I bought it has been my quest to dump the damn thing, and that took me a long time to figure out how to do it. Labor of love nonetheless. This cart has a special place in my collection now. :)

 

 

 

From the wear and tear I can tell this thing is not new. Today repo artists can make 512 in 1 multicarts, etc.. but I believe this to be the largest old era Atari 2600 mulitcart ever made going by Atarimania's listings. What is fantastic is the thing is menu driven. I shit you not. A menu screen is comes up when you start the cart and a tune plays in the background. Move the the digits up and down to the game number you want, press fire and Voila! the game starts. To return to the menu screen turn the Atari off and back on.

 

post-7074-1218154204_thumb.png

 

 

I got the cart in the mail and tried to dump it. No matter what I did all I got was the rom for the menu screen over and over. Finally I decided to have a go at disassembling the menu screen rom myself to see what made it tick. Learning 6502 assembly was a bit of a trip, but thankfully Andrew Davie has his fine lessons, Nukey helped me with some of my Noob questions, and Thomas has fine disassemblies posted which I tried to emulate as best I could. Eckhard's developmental software is more versatile then I ever had imagined. It has the ability to read unknown bankswitching schemes a bank at a time. I knew from my disassembly that the menu screen was writing to $F8xx (xx being the game number in hex) before doing a jump to $FFFC. It didn't really click with me that this was switching banks until Thomas pointed it out. Using a line like:

 

7800ctrl -wF83A -n3A -t264K (058).bin

 

allowed me to read the game at that address. The catch was the dumper would only switch banks after power up. That took me a long time for me to figure out, but again Eckhard saved me. Thanks also to Cpuwiz who I pestered many questions with at this time. Your Ferrari is waiting for you man, just as soon as you send me the check. :P

 

 

Finally da romz:

 

208_in_1.zip

 

 

Inside is a complete, verified rom set of the cart and a disassembly of the menu screen. An excel sheet is also included with spellings and comparisons of the game names, as well as how they match up. As far as I can tell they took the 192 in 1 cart and added 16 more games. Now on the back of the cart is a game list with no numbers, just five columns of names. Pay attention to how everything was done by typewriter back then. They simply added the new games to the bottom of the columns so each column has 3+ new games at its end. The excel sheet makes more sense of it, trust me. Of interesting note "Mouse Trap" (which is not actually the game Mouse Trap) is repeated twice on the game list. One of these is in the new games added in addition the 192 cart. These new 16 games I could not match the names up for. They make little sense and my guess is they just grabbed random names.

 

 

The key to the rest of the names is to start paying attention to the large sequences. Start with games like Tuby Bird (which itself is a hack of Dolphin, which has Tuby Bird written on the screen) and then continue down the list lining up the games with how they appear when selected from the menu screen. Spiderman remains Spider-Man, Bank Heist becomes Maze Craze (it is a maze on the screen), etc, etc.. It makes more and more sense from a poorly translated Chinese perspective. Trick Shoot becomes Lunar Ball (the cue ball is white, like a full moon), Jaw Breaker becomes Teeth Brush (during intermission you actually see it brush your teeth) and so on.

 

 

Of interesting note are a few new hacks I haven't seen before:

 

post-7074-1218154212_thumb.pngpost-7074-1218154235_thumb.png

post-7074-1218154242_thumb.pngpost-7074-1218154249_thumb.png

 

 

There was no unknown game though, and no rom that had a hidden logo inside. I partially disassembled most of the roms that did not match any in Rom Hunter's Roms Collection V3. What is strange is that most of the hacks were just scanline/time hacks. Like they just changed the amount of cycles in overscan and vblank. That's it. Oh sure some were NTSC to PAL, but some are also PAL to PAL so what difference does it make if it's 304 lines or 310 lines. :?

 

For example:

 

;==============================================================================
(011 - $F80B) Ski (aka Skiing)
;==============================================================================

(1/4)																0  1  2  3
0 Skiing (PAL) 32 in 1•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••   • 99 97 95
1 (011 - $F80B) Ski (aka Skiing)•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••   =  • 97 95
2 Skiing (NTSC)••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••   =  =  • 97
3 Skiing (PAL)•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••   =  =  =  •

;----------------------------
Closest Match: Skiing (PAL) 32 in 1.bin
Byte Difference: 2 bytes

file 1: (011 - $F80B) Ski (aka Skiing).bin
file 2: Skiing (PAL) 32 in 1.bin

	file 1  file 2
$F12E	$47	 $45
$F3C7	$4D	 $4A

;----------------------------
Partial Disassembly:

$F12D   LDY  #$47	;   #$45 in the PAL 32 in 1 cart
$F12F   STY  TIM64T  ;
$F132   LDY  $91	 ;

$F3C6   LDY  #$4D	;   #$4A in the PAL 32 in 1 cart
$F3C8   LSR		  ;
$F3C9   STA  WSYNC;
$F3CB   STX  VSYNC;
$F3CD   STY  TIM64T  ;
$F3D0   LDY  $8C	 ;

 

The original is 314 scanlines. With the hack it changed to 319 scanlines, according to Stella. This would make it B&W on a PAL TV screen? :? Just what the Hell were they thinking of anyhow? Yet I saw this over and over again. Just changing a few scanlines here and there. Most were even numbered to even numbered, and some were NTSC to PAL, but I just don't get the purpose of changing a few scanlines on a PAL TV if the original should have worked. Perhaps there are some older PAL TV's that worked better with about 304 scanlines. I have seen Home Vision games do that a lot.

 

 

One final thing I'd like to add is that I believe the Menu Screen rom has been used in a few pirate consels, hacked a little a bit different each time. I'm amazed at the simple little lullaby that they pulled off on the 2600. Very creative people. I noticed numbers jumping randomly in Z26 when I emulated it, but not in Stella. My sensitivity might be set too high in Z26. If you experience the same thing I'd like to know. You won't ever be able to select a game with the menu screen unless the emulators are specially rewritten to. This is all done with external logic chips. Eckhard has even suggested to me that the data table at the beginning of the disassemble is in fact the address lines of the chip being read, and not code at all, if I am understanding him right. The man knows really knows his stuff, much better then I can understand. :)

Edited by Omegamatrix
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My favourite is "Guided Lightning" :lol:

 

Great work Omega, I'm glad you finally got that cart dumped!

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Just "Wow!"...

 

Which tool was used to dump this cart? I'm curious. :roll:

 

BTW, which game is started when you select 203 from the loader?

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The Nexar hack is called Galatic on the label and the screen (instead of Galactic).

 

Cuttle Fish is a hack too (whale instead of shark).

 

 

Omega,

 

Exactly which ones were not 100% identical to the ones in my V3 collection?

 

8)

Edited by Rom Hunter

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The Nexar hack is called Galatic on the label and the screen (instead of Galactic).

 

Cuttle Fish is a hack too (whale instead of shark).

 

 

Omega,

 

Exactly which ones were not 100% identical to the ones in my V3 collection?

 

8)

If you look at the excel file the second page has all the games listed. The green highlighted ones were not 100% matches. The others I listed the 100% matches beside the game.

 

 

Rom, I found it interesting that some of the 16 games added since the 192 in 1 cart were NTSC, like Alien and Beany Bopper. It really looks like they grabbed a bunch of random games. The names don't line up at all. You would think Weltraum-Tunnel would be Space Tunnel, but since nothing else matches...

 

Again many of these roms only had one or two bytes difference, and those were in the value stored into the timer.

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Just "Wow!"...

 

Which tool was used to dump this cart? I'm curious. :roll:

 

BTW, which game is started when you select 203 from the loader?

The 7800 can be modified to be a cart dumper. Many people around here have done this. One of the benefits is that it can still play 7800 and 2600 games after the mod.

 

 

Game 203 is Outlaw, or Autolaw. :lol: It doesn't work off the bat though. Sort of all scrambled until you hit reset, and you would never know basketball is in the second half because you can never reach it.

 

 

 

@Rom every rom was dumped as a 4k, and any that could possibly be smaller then 4k was split and both halves compared. Every single 2k rom was identical in both halves except rom 203 which is an oddity in itself as both roms appear in the cart elsewhere, and we are talking 100% matches.

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Omega,

 

What about Bowling, Word Zapper and Zig Zag Battle.

 

Are you sure these are in my collection too?

 

8)

Nope. I forgot to highlight those.

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Here Spirantho is talking about pirate consels:

 

http://www.atariage.com/forums/index.php?s...st&p=514041

 

Read the thread all the way until you reach this picture:

 

post-7074-1218310388.jpg

 

The roms are undoubtly related, especially since Spirantho describes it playing a nice little tune. The difference in the graphics would be elementary to do. I wonder how many versions of this rom are out there? IMO it is the best thing about all these consels/carts. Not a game, but a very interesting piece.

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Rom, Omega, how many games on this cart have been released as true carts in their own form? I have noticed several titles confirmed as single enders but do either of you have a determined figure?

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That was my gut feeling too but due to cross refering I have discovered that the majority of multi carts and consoles share the same names listed for their pirated games. Maybe a dozen have surfaced as games in their own right and I ma kind of curious it others will surface as single enders too ;)

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Yep.

 

It would be nice to know all the multi-game title AKA's, but that's a lot of work.

 

This unidentified game title list has first priority:

 

Kung Fu II (Artkaris Software)

Rio Peligroso (Clever Game)

Tragamonedas (Clever Game)

Hunter (Conectivision)

Aterrizaje (Edu Games)

Busqueda Tresoro (Edu Games)

Cazafantasmas (Edu Games)

Cocinero (Edu Games)

Frutillitas (Edu Games)

Ladrillos (Edu Games)

Mandibulas (Edu Games)

Muppet (Edu Games)

Play Round (Edu Games)

River Raid IV (Edu Games)

Space Demons (Edu Games)

Space Power (Edu Games)

Space Ship (Edu Games)

Star Wars III (Edu Games)

Submarino (Edu Games)

Tarzan (Edu Games)

Traga Monedas (Edu Games)

Tron II (Edu Games)

Car Racing (Fantastic Game)

Ges (Fantastic Game)

Super Foot Ball (Mega)

Paraquedista (Splice)

Panico Cosmico (Splice)

Ataque Satanico (Splice)

Comboio (Splice)

Lanche Rapido (Splice)

Pirâmide (Splice)

Sapão (Splice)

Viagem Estrelar (Splice)

Looping (Splice)

Colorindo o Labirinto (Splice)

Guerra Estrelar (Splice)

Missão Perigosa

Casa Mal-Assombrada (Splice)

Jogo da Velha 3D (Splice)

Golfinho (Splice)

Mundo Congelado (Splice)

Olimpiadas (Splice)

Air Force (SpaceVision)

Corre Corre (Splice Vision)

Labirinto (Splice Vision)

Pegasus (Supergame)

Super Tank (SuperVision)

Assaulrt (Taiwan - 2600 Compatible)

Motor Race (Taiwan - 2600 Compatible)

Reever Raad II (Taiwan - 2600 Compatible)

Space Trip (Taiwan - 2600 Compatible)

Miki Dog (Taiwan - Cooper Black)

Whale Hunter (Taiwan - Cooper Black)

Maze House (Taiwan - V-Case)

Sea Adventure (Taiwan - V-case)

Patrol (Video Game Program)

Round-1 (Video Game Program)

Star Battle (Video Game Program)

Bandido e Ladrado (Video Grow)

Corrida Maluca (VidGame)

Invasao de Aranhas (VidGame)

Veijao Voader (VidGame)

Adventuri (War Games)

Jedi (Wide Vision)

Aques (ZGames)

Demon (Zirok)

Fire Ball (Zirok)

 

All titles in our database of which I do not know the true identity yet.

 

8)

Edited by Rom Hunter

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I wonder if Whale Hunter is Frisco? Marco, if you are reading this did you ever check your Seal to Whales to see if there is a Datatech logo on the Screen? IIRC there is space in the rom where the logo is erased. The neat thing about Frisco is that is a hack of NTSC Pac-Man, but it is such a different game you would be hard pressed to tell.

 

 

@ Rom in the future a list of what the games are on the multicarts would be a worthwhile project. That is definitely one thing I would like to see, cause I often see a multicart on Atarimania, but have no idea of what the games are.

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@ Rom in the future a list of what the games are on the multicarts would be a worthwhile project. That is definitely one thing I would like to see, cause I often see a multicart on Atarimania, but have no idea of what the games are.

This can only be done with the help of many owners of multicarts and clones, who also own the genuine game list.

 

And where do you stop?

 

4 in 1 carts?

 

Weird sounding 2 in 1 carts too?

 

Lifetime job.

 

I know how much work this is, because I've done it before with both TV Boys.

 

Also, our site is not able to cross-link multi-game cart titles.

 

I managed to cram in even the 16 in 1 carts as searchable game entries, but that's as far as I can go:

http://atarimania.com/lst_soft.php?SOFT_LI...age=1&OK=OK

 

Omega, could you please make better scans of that 208 in 1?

 

BTW: do you also own this one?

post-6203-1218612880_thumb.jpgpost-6203-1218612895_thumb.jpg

 

8)

Edited by Rom Hunter

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@ Rom in the future a list of what the games are on the multicarts would be a worthwhile project. That is definitely one thing I would like to see, cause I often see a multicart on Atarimania, but have no idea of what the games are.

This can only be done with the help of many owners of multicarts and clones, who also own the genuine game list.

 

And where do you stop?

 

4 in 1 carts?

 

Weird sounding 2 in 1 carts too?

 

Lifetime job.

 

I know how much work this is, because I've done it before with both TV Boys.

 

Also, our site is not able to cross-link multicart titles.

 

I managed to cram in even the 16 in 1 carts as searchable game entries, but that's as far as I can go:

http://atarimania.com/lst_soft.php?SOFT_LI...age=1&OK=OK

 

Omega, could you please make better scans of that 208 in 1?

 

BTW: do you also own this one?

post-6203-1218612880_thumb.jpgpost-6203-1218612895_thumb.jpg

 

8)

 

I'm pretty sure I own the one on the left.

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Omega, could you please make better scans of that 208 in 1?

 

BTW: do you also own this one?

post-6203-1218612880_thumb.jpgpost-6203-1218612895_thumb.jpg

 

8)

I don't own it, the 32 in 1. I have seen it before though. It finally makes sense what the 192 Treasure means on the back of my cart. It is straight from the 192 cart, and is sort of like we have 192 great games on this cart. :D I see that all the 192 in 1 have numbers besides the name of the game. I wonder if this truily lines up or if it is more like the 208 in 1?

 

 

post-7074-1218689798_thumb.jpgpost-7074-1218689819_thumb.jpg

 

 

Here is one of the back not resized. It will help read the game names better. :)

 

post-7074-1218689861_thumb.jpg

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