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Ikrananka

ColecoVision Collectors Database – v3.00 (2019)

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ColecoVision Collectors Database – v3.00 (2019)

 

Greetings ColecoVision collectors!

 

After an over four-year absence, the ColecoVision Collectors Database is finally back!!!

 

Name Change and Rarity Values

 

First I should clarify that it's back but with a name change, as it was previously known as the ColecoVision & ADAM Computer Rarity List.  The reason for the name change is so that it more accurately reflects the current content and format.  The original text "list", that NIAD created and updated through to the end of 2014 (v2.11), has since only been updated and maintained by me and only in an Excel spreadsheet in more of a "database" format.  Additionally, I removed the words "ADAM computer" and "rarity" from the name as the database does not cover anything specific/unique to the ADAM computer and the rarity values have not been updated since before 2014.  In fact, I have only made a few changes to rarity values since 2014 and I have no real intention of updating rarity values going forward.

If anyone would like to volunteer to develop a reasonable rarity criterion and provide me with updated rarity values, then I’ll be happy to incorporate that into the database.  Just let me know.

 

v2.11a (2014) to v3.00 (2019)

 

An enormous number of changes have occurred to the database over the past four to five years.  Aside from many corrections and additions to the historic portions of the database, I am amazed at the sheer number of additions that the homebrew publishers and community have created, since 2014, and continue to create.

 

A word of caution.  Since 2014 I have worked on the database sporadically and without those updates being particularly planned or coordinated.  Over the past few months I have gone back over the changes I made and the various posts and PMs on AA since the last release (v2.11a) and have done my best to check and verify everything.  Nevertheless, due to the sporadic nature of the updates I made I really cannot guarantee that the database is free of errors or omissions.  As such, I would be extremely grateful if anyone spots something wrong that you report it here and I will ensure that it is incorporated into the next update.

 

Changelog

 

Rather than produce a long changelog between releases, I simply highlight cells in the spreadsheet with a colour, in this case blue, to indicate where a change has occurred.  Where an entry has been deleted, I highlight a cell in Column A in the row below the deletion.  The last version of the Excel database that I released was back in November 2015 (v2.11a) and so the highlighted changes in the current release are those that have occurred between versions 2.11a and v3.00.

 

Now, if you plan on using this database to catalogue your ColecoVision collection, as I do, then I not only provide a copy of the database with changes highlighted, but one that has the highlighting removed and is ready for use.

So, attached to this post are two versions of the database, (i) with changes highlighted, and (ii) with change highlighting removed. 

 

Cataloguing Feature

 

To use the cataloguing feature simply do the following for each item that you have in your collection:

1.      In the "My Col" (short for "My Collection") column, enter ANY character to signify that you own part or all the items in that row or that you simply want this item for your collection. You will notice that after entering a character, all the cells containing a checkbox will turn a red colour. This is to highlight that these are still items wanted for your collection.

2.      If you own any of the items in the row, then grade the condition of the item (e.g. box, manual etc.) on a scale of 1 to 10. Either type this number into the respective red coloured cell or select the value from the drop-down selection in that cell. Note that the cell colour changes based on the condition value selected as follows:

1 to 5 = red (poor condition - replace)
6 to 7 = yellow (okay condition - possibly replace)
8 to 10 = green (very good condition - keep)

The colours help signify if you are happy with the condition of what you have or if you want to try and "upgrade" it by buying another.

Simple as that!  If you want to change the automatic colouring of cells, then please feel free to do so (it uses Excel's conditional formatting feature).

 

Future Release Schedule

 

My plan going forward is to release a new version of the database once every quarter (3 monthly).  This should allow me to keep on top of changes in a more efficient manner than I have to date.  Each update will be posted in a new thread to allow the comments to remain relevant to that version.

 

Feedback

 

Please post any comments, suggestions, additions/deletions and/or corrections in this thread and I will incorporate them into the next release as appropriate.

 

Help Wanted

 

I really want to expand this database to include a lot more information about individual games, e.g. developers, cheats, Easter eggs, cart PCB, rom size etc.  It would also be great to be able to include items such as box art, manuals etc.  These would be things I would add slowly over time, but the major issue is that Excel really isn’t the best way to store and present this information as it will starts to become too large and unwieldy.  Interrogating the database in Excel is also very clunky compared to “real” database applications.  What I really would like is to transition the Collectors Database over to a decent database application with perhaps a nice web style user interface for presenting the data and with simple forms for searching/filtering the data.  This also must be a standalone offline database, one that is free to use and distribute and is still being actively worked on.  Does such a thing exist?

 

So, I’m looking for help from anyone with a good knowledge of databases and their user interfaces.  Any database gurus out there???

 

Prior Releases

 

v2.11a (Nov 2015)

v2.11 (Dec 2014) - List (last list version)

v2.10 (Aug 2014) - Excel

v2.10 (Jan 2014) - List

v2.09 (Jan 2013) - List

v2.08 (Oct 2012) - Excel

v2.08 (Jul 2012) - List

v2.00 (Sep 2011) - List

v1.75 (Aug 2011) - List

v1.5 (Apr 2011) - List

v1.0 (Apr 2011) - List

v0.7 (Mar 2011) - List

v0.4 (Dec 2010) - List

v0.3 (Dec 2010) - List

v0.2 (Nov 2010) - List

v0.1 (Nov 2010) - List

 

 

 

 

 

 

ColecoVision Collectors Database v3.00 (2019).xlsx ColecoVision Collectors Database v3.00 (2019) - Changelog.xlsx

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One small nit (prompted by opening via Numbers): is there a reason seven different typefaces are used within the spreadsheet?

 

It's a very, very small thing, but... leaving the fonts untouched as employed, I see, for example, 'w's and 'q's that I guess are non-alphanumeric glyphs (that display without issue on the originating system)?

 

Is it possible to export as PDF one sample sheet (say, "US 82-85") to clue one (ok, me) to the intended display of information?

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Within the "Telegames 86-13" sheet, the following "generic" white-label releases known to me are absent:

 

+ Gorf

+ Pepper II

 

I suppose "86-13" in this sheet title is meant to convey the date range "1986 - 2013". Perhaps consider using less cryptic four-digit year representations? I also guess that abbreviating years was meant to shorten sheet titles for tabbed display. Given the sheer number of sheets, I imagine they don't simultaneously fit on-screen in a typical use case as it stands.

 

Side question: for comments, edits, etc. is the preferred style one suggested changeset per post, or would you rather things be gathered into single posts even if they happen to straddle sheets, topics, issues ... ? 

Edited by mumbai

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59 minutes ago, mumbai said:

One small nit (prompted by opening via Numbers): is there a reason seven different typefaces are used within the spreadsheet?

 

It's a very, very small thing, but... leaving the fonts untouched as employed, I see, for example, 'w's and 'q's that I guess are non-alphanumeric glyphs (that display without issue on the originating system)?

 

Is it possible to export as PDF one sample sheet (say, "US 82-85") to clue one (ok, me) to the intended display of information?

As far as I'm aware there are only two different fonts used in the spreadsheet, Arial for column headings and some text on the Introduction tab, with the rest using Courier New.  Do you have any examples where you're seeing other fonts used?

 

Here's a PDF of the "US 82-85" sheet as requested.  What do you see differently?

 

 

ColecoVision Collectors Database v3.00 (2019).pdf

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23 minutes ago, Ikrananka said:

As far as I'm aware there are only two different fonts used in the spreadsheet, Arial for column headings and some text on the Introduction tab, with the rest using Courier New.  Do you have any examples where you're seeing other fonts used?

The reported fonts in use: Calibri, Arial, Courier New, Helvetica, Helvetica Neue, Verdana, and Wingdings.

 

How each is employed would require more detailed analysis. It may be that it's trivial cases whitespace or singleton characters. Not sure if you're asking me to seek out where the other five typefaces are placed?

 

23 minutes ago, Ikrananka said:

Here's a PDF of the "US 82-85" sheet as requested.  What do you see differently?

At a glance, the checkboxes in footnotes 10 and 12. I'd have to look at all the sheets for quirks to note other missing or replaced glyphs.

 

Edited by mumbai
concision

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3 minutes ago, mumbai said:

The reported fonts in use are: Calibri, Arial, Courier New, Helvetica, Helvetica Neue, Verdana, and Wingdings.

 

How each is employed would require more detailed analysis. It may be that in some cases it's a trivial case of whitespace or singleton characters. Not sure if you're asking me to seek out where the other five typefaces are ... ?

 

At a glance, the checkboxes in footnotes 10 and 12. I'd have to look at all the sheets for quirks to note other possible incidences of missing or replaced glyphs.

 

Wingdings is used for the main checkboxes in the database as well as in some of the footnotes.  These footnotes use mixed fonts in the same cell and as they use characters from the extended font set (to display checkboxes) they may well display differently in different spreadsheet programs such as Numbers.

 

Calibri seems to be the new default font chosen by Microsoft so I suspect that it is on some of the newer sheets that have been added.  The only other places I can find it in is way down below the actual database where I have the conditional formatting reference area set.  I can easily change this to Arial.

 

I have no idea where Helvetica and Helvetica Neue are being used but I'll knock up a quick VBA program to search them out and get rid of them..........

 

Thanks for pointing this out - I will endeavour to rationalise and reduce the number of fonts used in the next version.

 

 

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Ikrananka... thank you for all your help over the years with my Collector's List and for taking over this huge endeavor which really improves upon my original text listing. I wish that I would have had the time over the last 5 or so years to keep it updated to make your job easier with this new list, but it just wasn't possible. I can only imagine how much work it was to play catch-up especially seeing as I always updated the list as new items to add were found or released.

 

I haven't looked at the your new list yet, but will spend some time tonight looking everything over.

 

Thank You!

 

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1 hour ago, mumbai said:

Within the "Telegames 86-13" sheet, the following "generic" white-label releases known to me are absent:

 

+ Gorf

+ Pepper II

Were we discussing these carts last year?

 

I've added the above two games and have some photos of the Pepper II white label cart.  Do you have any photos of the Gorf cart?

 

BTW, I'll also delete the "Blister Pack" box and manuals for all of them apart from Time Pilot.  I have never actually seen any of these in a blister pack and with a manual other than Time Pilot.

 

1 hour ago, mumbai said:

I suppose "86-13" in this sheet title is meant to convey the date range "1986 - 2013". Perhaps consider using less cryptic four-digit year representations? I also guess that abbreviating years was meant to shorten sheet titles for tabbed display. Given the sheer number of sheets, I imagine they don't simultaneously fit on-screen in a typical use case as it stands.

I'd rather keep the sheet names as-is.  They were indeed shortened to keep as many sheet tabs as visible as possible.  Due to the large number of sheets involved adding to their name lengths makes scrolling to other sheets a pain.  I find it annoying enough as it is.

 

1 hour ago, mumbai said:

Side question: for comments, edits, etc. is the preferred style one suggested changeset per post, or would you rather things be gathered into single posts even if they happen to straddle sheets, topics, issues ... ? 

I have no problem with people gathering comments/suggestions into one post or spreading them over several into subject areas.

 

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5 minutes ago, NIAD said:

Ikrananka... thank you for all your help over the years with my Collector's List and for taking over this huge endeavor which really improves upon my original text listing. I wish that I would have had the time over the last 5 or so years to keep it updated to make your job easier with this new list, but it just wasn't possible. I can only imagine how much work it was to play catch-up especially seeing as I always updated the list as new items to add were found or released.

No, thank you!!!  Without the enormous effort you put in to start with this would not exist.  I for one am extremely grateful to you for that.  Your list has allowed me to keep control and track of my collection, a reference for which I had been searching for years to find.  Looking forward to hearing back from you once you've had a chance to review it.

 

Yes, getting this update completed has been a rather mammoth task and it is a huge relief to finally get closure on this release.  And then mumbai comes along minutes later and shatters my peace by pointing out font problems and omissions 😁  (just kidding - I'm forever grateful for any feedback.  It all makes the database better and more accurate.)

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51 minutes ago, Ikrananka said:

Wingdings is used for the main checkboxes in the database as well as in some of the footnotes.  These footnotes use mixed fonts in the same cell and as they use characters from the extended font set (to display checkboxes) they may well display differently in different spreadsheet programs such as Numbers.

Might it be better to replace such instances with UTF equivalents (where possible) in an already used typeface, rather than use Wingdings? Somewhat confident that the former offers greater interoperability than the latter. Could be wrong, though.

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15 minutes ago, Ikrananka said:

And then mumbai comes along minutes later and shatters my peace by pointing out font problems and omissions 😁  (just kidding - I'm forever grateful for any feedback.  It all makes the database better and more accurate.)

Well, when I have time to be more than a nuisance, I'll shatter the peace with variations and such that I suspect aren't in the list at present... :)

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51 minutes ago, Ikrananka said:

Were we discussing these carts last year?

 

I've added the above two games and have some photos of the Pepper II white label cart.  Do you have any photos of the Gorf cart?

 

BTW, I'll also delete the "Blister Pack" box and manuals for all of them apart from Time Pilot.  I have never actually seen any of these in a blister pack and with a manual other than Time Pilot.

 

I'd rather keep the sheet names as-is.  They were indeed shortened to keep as many sheet tabs as visible as possible.  Due to the large number of sheets involved adding to their name lengths makes scrolling to other sheets a pain.  I find it annoying enough as it is.

 

I have no problem with people gathering comments/suggestions into one post or spreading them over several into subject areas.

(The AA forum ate my split reply; pardon the condensed reply.)

 

We were discussing the carts last year. Gorf is in my collection. I haven't photographed it to date.

 

I believe I have seen blisterpaks other than Time Pilot. Must sift through my disorganization to confirm. Definitely possess manuals in the blisterpak style for games other than just Time Pilot (Apshai and a few others).

 

If the angle of attack is sheet title shortening, there are other approaches than to create goofy number ranges than "85-13". Full-year representation adds four characters per instance. But I agree that the structuring and sheer number of sheets is itself an obstacle.

 

Given how awkward (for me) the refreshed forum interface is for splitting a quoted block into several without fiddling about, when I have time to offer things of greater substance I'll avoid omnibus posts. Thanks for being flexible.

Edited by mumbai
words!

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@Ikrananka Impressive work, thank you!

 

After a quick glance: Under Bootlegs 1985-2013 the entry Smurf Rescue Unknown (Taiwan) is actually called Smure Rescue.

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47 minutes ago, AtariBuff said:

@IkranankaAfter a quick glance: Under Bootlegs 1985-2013 the entry Smurf Rescue Unknown (Taiwan) is actually called Smure Rescue.

...which leads to another detail-oriented issue: the inconsistent manner in which games with doctored retitles are presented within the spreadsheet. Sometimes the original title is supplied parenthetically, other times not, and elsewhere it's the altered title that's provided parenthetically (e.g., '(as "Rocky")' within the Telegames sheet).

 

It's unclear whether the Super Action Football of Mania's "Football (Super Action Football)" is the American Football or European Football game, too.

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2 hours ago, mumbai said:

...which leads to another detail-oriented issue: the inconsistent manner in which games with doctored retitles are presented within the spreadsheet. Sometimes the original title is supplied parenthetically, other times not, and elsewhere it's the altered title that's provided parenthetically (e.g., '(as "Rocky")' within the Telegames sheet).

Another case of this would be Amazing Bumpman/Number Bumper. A more consistent scheme might permit removal of footnote 4 on the Telegames sheet if variance between given title and canonical name for a game were integrated within the row data.

 

Edited by mumbai
grammar

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16 hours ago, mumbai said:

The reported fonts in use: Calibri, Arial, Courier New, Helvetica, Helvetica Neue, Verdana, and Wingdings.

I found that Excel's search function is capable of finding fonts in the sheets and so tracking these down has been fairly trivial.  Here's what I found and have corrected:

 

Calibri : this was from an old copy and paste into each sheet where I define the contents for the cataloguing drop-downs.  The normal user would never see these cells/font.  I have changed these cells to Courier New

Arial : Used for the database column headings.  This will be just one of the two retained fonts as it uses less width for the headings compared to the monospaced Courier New font and, in my opinion, looks nicer.

Helevtica : I searched every sheet and Excel does not find this font in use anywhere!!!

Helvetica Neue I searched every sheet and Excel does not find this font in use anywhere!!!

Verdana : this was a strange one.  Only four blank cells on the Homebrew 96-19 sheet had this formatting.  They have now been removed.

Wingdings : I have now found that this font is only in use in the cataloguing cells that are blank, i.e. those without checkboxes.  I spoke incorrectly before that this was used in cells with multiple fonts.  This was a throwback to a much earlier version of the sheets before I introduced the cataloguing feature.  At that time the entire checkbox/cataloguing area was set to Wingdings as I used that to display the static checkboxes.  However, now the cataloguing feature with dropdowns uses Courier New and so I can set all of the blank Wingdings cells to Courier New as well.  This has eliminated Wingdings from all sheets.

 

To be certain there are no rogue fonts anywhere else I have set all cells on every sheet to use Courier New with the exception of database column headings.

 

The upshot of the above changes is that every sheet now uses Courier New everywhere except for the database column headings which are Arial.  So, only two fonts in use.

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25 minutes ago, Ikrananka said:

The upshot of the above changes is that every sheet now uses Courier New everywhere except for the database column headings which are Arial.  So, only two fonts in use.

Thanks. I'll dig around (much, much, much ) later to determine why Helvetica (+ Neue) are reported as in use in the original spreadsheet.

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4 hours ago, AtariBuff said:

@Ikrananka Impressive work, thank you!

 

After a quick glance: Under Bootlegs 1985-2013 the entry Smurf Rescue Unknown (Taiwan) is actually called Smure Rescue.

Thanks - this has now been corrected.

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3 hours ago, mumbai said:

...which leads to another detail-oriented issue: the inconsistent manner in which games with doctored retitles are presented within the spreadsheet. Sometimes the original title is supplied parenthetically, other times not, and elsewhere it's the altered title that's provided parenthetically (e.g., '(as "Rocky")' within the Telegames sheet).

 

It's unclear whether the Super Action Football of Mania's "Football (Super Action Football)" is the American Football or European Football game, too.

I personally prefer for the name of the game on the label/box to be shown and the correct name (if different) to be shown after in parentheses.  As such, I have changed the two occurrences under Telegames (Rocky and Smurf) to this format, e.g. "Rocky (Rocky - Super Action Boxing)".

 

With regard to the Mania bootleg, I have renamed it to : "Football (Super Action Football by Coleco)" to differentiate it from the European football by CBS.  I have also been through the other bootlegs and added correct game names in parentheses where appropriate.

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When one releases something such as this database, one typically opens up a huge can of worms to deal with as well !!! Enjoy the ride Ikrananka.

 

All kidding aside, everyone's help in pointing out issues and omissions has always been welcome and appreciated.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, NIAD said:

When one releases something such as this database, one typically opens up a huge can of worms to deal with as well !!! Enjoy the ride Ikrananka.

 

All kidding aside, everyone's help in pointing out issues and omissions has always been welcome and appreciated.

 

 

Yeah, my heart sank slightly, but recovered quickly.  I really want to try and continually improve the database so that it is a readily accessible resource and one that is trusted, and hopefully used, by all.  That can only be successfully done with the input of others.  As you say, everyone's comments are most welcome and very much appreciated.

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For those who do not have Excel and / or prefer PDF, may you possibly release a PDF version of the database as well, formatted as 8.5 x 11 inch? If this is too much work, forgive the intrusion, but I think many would find PDF a valuable alternate to the spreadsheet format. 

 

The amount of work you've put into creating this resource is fantastic, and a big THANK YOU for the time spent gathering all of this together in one convenient place.

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9 hours ago, zyzzle said:

For those who do not have Excel and / or prefer PDF, may you possibly release a PDF version of the database as well, formatted as 8.5 x 11 inch? If this is too much work, forgive the intrusion, but I think many would find PDF a valuable alternate to the spreadsheet format. 

 

The amount of work you've put into creating this resource is fantastic, and a big THANK YOU for the time spent gathering all of this together in one convenient place.

While I have done this in the past I'm at the point where I just don't think it's practical anymore - at least in a Letter sized paper format.  The problem now is that on some sheets I have added a lot of additional columns making them much wider.  This will only get worse as I start to expand the database to include extra info such a developer names, rom sizes etc.  There is also information contained as "Notes" in many cells and these can only be printed on separate pages.  As I'm contemplating using notes for Easter Eggs, Cheats etc., this issue will just get worse.

 

The other issue is the time I have.  While I'm happy to dedicate my time to keeping the database up to date and to expand the information contained in it, I just don't have the time (or to be honest, inclination) to mess about with each sheet so that it prints out nicely.  In many ways it would be nice for this to be a community project, with others taking on various tasks such as producing a pdf version.  Any volunteers?

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