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Draxxon

Legends Core Gamer - Honest Review

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Posted (edited)

So, I hope to be informative and not needless, long winded or too opinionated.

 

I got my Legends Core Gamer (on Saturday) that I ordered from AtGames website. It came fast. I ordered a RetroN77 a day before on Amazon, and it doesn't get here until Monday.

The box it came in was NOT the white, Legends Flashback style, box you see in the reviewers videos. Mine was a brown cardboard box that looked like it came from a computer store. It had Atgames logo and legends core branding, but, my mailing info was taped across it and removing it screwed up the box. It looked like something a Legends Ultimate Arcade owner might get if they needed a replacement part. Also the box was not sealed. the clear circle tape was broken. Everything inside looked brand new. i looked microscopically at the ports to see if anything had ever been plugged in before. There had not been. I could see the faint machining lines from where the holes were drilled in the case, which is completely normal, just telling you all how close I looked. The items were brand new.

I did my homework going in and knew Xbox One pads had to be wired and had button mapping issues and the PS5 pads work correctly and wirelessly. I got a PS5 pad. I Held home and create buttons to put it into pairing mode, and paired it. done. I imagine for now, this is the major hang-up for some. What pads work? How to pair them. The real question here is do you want atgames arcade stick/s with core ($130-$250) or do you want the core system and a ps5 pad or 2? (core system is $60, Ps5 pads are $70 each) Its PS5 Pads vs AtGames sticks. Multiple players via pads vs spinners and trackballs. For whatever reason, the onscreen cursor in the menu always gets stuck left or right. like when you turn a pad on with a direction held? its auto left or right... well it happens a lot on this thing. And, I have no clue what causes it. It doesnt happen in an actual game, just the menu.

And, I totally get that everyone knows all this, atgames is working on more controller support via updates and have their own pads coming. there are usb hubs and xbox pad pros and cons as well. But if you buy one, you WILL need a way to play it, so be prepared. This is just the controller option I went with, for lots of reasons. I should also point out I own all the various mini systems and other pads and sticks, and nothing I tried worked fully. Like PSXClassic buttons work, but not the dpad.

 

The gameplay???? It's a legends flashback 3... ... ... This is basically the same thing as a legends ultimate arcade cabinet. minus a few features and the cabinet itself. ... Its a legends flashback in a puck. I mean, I already knew. I move past it... the PS5 pad is new to me also, so I'm actually enjoying that at the same time, so its a mind f**k. The system itself plays a bit better overall than the LFB2, there is still some slowdown here and there (Rodland), and it still has rewind (AKA the B.M.B. "Billy Mitchel Button") but gameplay feels overall more smooth. Oh yeah, one of the features that it is missing from its arcade counterpart is the importing of the blast units and old flashback units games Ive seen. That was a bumber, not really sure why we dont get that feature. But I mean, you can add games manually. We played quite a few built-in games yesterday at a family event (Space Invaders/DX, Tetris 1&2, Bubble Bobble, SRD, a lot of stuff.) The online leaderboard icons from the LFB2 are here I see, I figured the 3 games on the LFB2 were just a test for this unit anyways. Fix It Felix is back, glad to see that one too, actually. Because, for the record, I really do like my LFB units. I look at the Arcade net games, they are mostly whack, a couple bangers. and it costs more money, but you can play people online. I haven't messed with any of that yet. Maybe later Ill add to this post. I see Hyperspi..... er CoinOpsX out there too.

I just hopes this helps someone who might want to buy one.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

things I havent figured out:
1. What causes the menu curser to get stuck left and right?

2. how do I turn the console off?

3. how do I turn the PS5 pad off? (Put it in rest mode without a PS5 console)

Edited by Draxxon

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So its called CoinOpsX... But it sure does look a lot like Hyperspin FE to me.
 

 

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i havent tried that. all that stuff is inside my arcade cabinets. there is a usb port. When i get some time, I'll see if I can finagle a way to test them.

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Posted (edited)

So, I tried the USB encoder joystick i have wired into my old mame machine, no idea what kind it is, and it did NOT work.

I found out you CANNOT power off the system. Weird??

 

You can put the PS5 pad to sleep by holding the PS button for 10 seconds. And there is a hole and a reset button on the back of the PS5 pad.

As far as the stuck left and right in the menu, just a wild guess but the console must be setting left or right to neutral while im pressing one navigating the menu. is the pad losing connection and connecting during button presses? No clue. Doesnt happen in game. Doesnt happen on PS5. Im convinced its not the controller. Its the menu, i think.

Edited by Draxxon

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I've gotten an IPAC2 working with my Arcade Legends Ultimate. Everything except the trackball and spinners and power button, but I suspect I can get them working with it as well. You have to have the IPAC2 in keyboard mode and map the buttons to the correct keyboard keys. The keys are exactly what you see on the face of the Gamer Pro/Legends Ultimate control panel. A=A, B=B, etc... Joypad is wired to the arrow keys. Player 2 is mapped to the numberpad arrow keys (numpad 2, 4, 6, 8 ) and the face keys are mapped to Function keys, like F2, F3, F4, etc... Heck, you can even hook up a keyboard and navigate and play that way if you want.

 

The Core puck is a RK3328 board. Basically the same thing as a Rock64. Its on par with a Pi 4 in terms of speed. It does use RetroPlayer for the emulator, but it also uses RetroFE. Lots of work has been done to figure out how the retroplayer.ini file works, which flags are available, and how to pack games into a UCE file. We could use some help though, and you seem to be the go-to guys for knowing the limitations of the emulator and how the retroplayer.ini file works.

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the retroplayer ini file is where the core settings go, also flags for rewind on/off etc.

 

@rocketfan knows more, like how to see if you can find out what core options are available for each specific core.

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I know the purpose of the file, but we don't know which flags are available for cores that aren't stock or even how to enable some of them on cores that aren't stock. Or even a complete list of available flags.

 

 

Interesting. I'd be curious to know how. I've pulled the stock retroplayer_ro.ini file from the firmware and that is what I am basing my files from. Eventually I'm going to dump RetroPlayer into Ghidra to sit down and find out what all is possible, but we suspect that their implementation of using retroarch cores is severely crippled in many ways that aren't fixable at all. And Bill seems to be less than useless for technical info.

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Posted (edited)

we have a runcommand that everything runs through. There is a text file that generates when you run the core that will tell you what options are available. Not all cores have available options. The flags.... we pulled all the Retroplayers from the SGFB, AFB9s, AFBXs and LFBs. Looked through them all and compiled a list of flags. I think the retroplayer_ro.ini in the emulator folder is the master player, the retroplayer.ini is the /data folder is not. Bill knows facts and history, Im not sure he can get us source code that we need. He can definitely spin any negative opinions I have. But youre right about everything. Retroplayer and some of the cores are crippled.

 

   "a26")
     /usr/bin/startx /tmp/retroplayer.9 ${dev}/emulator/stella_libretro.so  $gm >${dev}/output_a26.txt
     ;;

 

here is a runcommand entry for atari 2600. it is set up to generate the text file.

 

runcommand

Edited by Draxxon
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Draxxon said:

we have a runcommand that everything runs through. There is a text file that generates when you run the core that will tell you what options are available. Not all cores have available options. The flags.... we pulled all the Retroplayers from the SGFB, AFB9s, AFBXs and LFBs. Looked through them all and compiled a list of flags. I think the retroplayer_ro.ini in the emulator folder is the master player, the retroplayer.ini is the /data folder is not. Bill knows facts and history, Im not sure he can get us source code that we need. He can definitely spin any negative opinions I have. But youre right about everything. Retroplayer and some of the cores are crippled.

 

   "a26")
     /usr/bin/startx /tmp/retroplayer.9 ${dev}/emulator/stella_libretro.so  $gm >${dev}/output_a26.txt
     ;;

 

here is a runcommand entry for atari 2600. it is set up to generate the text file.

 

runcommand 12.99 kB · 1 download

I'm not sure I'm even able to run that on the Legends Ultimate. The script we are allowed to run things with from a UCE file is very limited in that the OS mounts everything with -noexec set, so we don't have access to shared libraries and we cannot run anything other than RetroPlayer and RetroFE. Otherwise we would have implemented your method of CFW long ago.

 

In fact, the only reason we know anything about how it works is by trial, error, basing a lot of what we are doing off what you have already done, and we have guest access to the OS. So we can see things but not edit or run anything.

Edited by bobstossaway

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I havent messed with any UCE files or Legends Core add ons yet. 

 

I dont know how similar the setups are but you could search for core settings with the runcommand script on a LFB and see if they carry over.

@rocketfan is really the one who knows stuff, Im just the box art guy.

Are you guys saUCE/COINOPSX?

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Posted (edited)

So, on anther note, I powered on my core. I checked for updates and one was available, although I dont remember ever being notified a new update was out, maybe I missed it, maybe the kids skipped it, who knows, anyway, I was on v5.28.0. Im downloading v5.37.0, i think, now.

Im going to test usb controllers again and see what I find. Maybe finally add some games to it.

The menu cursor still flies all over the place when i was navigating the menu, hopefully that was fixed and not just an issue with my PS5 pads.

Edited by Draxxon

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Posted (edited)

menu curser still sticks after the update. I went into control panel test and moved the dpad around, sure enough after a few seconds, inputs like up or down get stuck to on. Its frustrating enough to not want to play with a PS5 pad with this device at all.

I tried my retrobit 6 button genesis pad, It didnt work. The 3 button Sega mini classic d-pad however DID work, but the action buttons didnt. I sure I wish I knew exactly what "greatly expanded" controller support actually meant. At this point, not much. The PS5 pad was supposed to be the go to pad for this, and its sure hard to beat a sega 6 button. Im not sure I care if any other pads work.

I would like to buy one of those bright lime-green legends gamepads, but who the hell knows how to do that?

 

Everything else as far as adding games is over complicated. And thats coming from the guy playing sega cd on his AFBX. Im not a fan yet, but im still messing with it. But I have come to the conclusion that these Legends Ultimate Arcade owners claiming that its the bees knees are full of shit. Its a LEGENDS FLASHBACK 3.

Edited by Draxxon

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I am not a CoinOPS person. The CoinOPS guys just build the frontend for RetroFE. 

 

I don't claim to be a saUCE person. However I am interested in how the system works and to understand that involves building UCE files like the saUCE guys and gals. I am sharing what I learn with them. And I know quite a bit. 

 

I'm quite invested in the ATGames ecosystem, having a Legends Ultimate 1.1, a Legends Gamer Pro, a Legends Pinball, and a Legends Connect. I seriously doubt many know more about how they work outside of ATGames than me. 

 

You keep calling this a Legends Flashback 3, but there are many differences. The first and perhaps most major is that this is an ARM64 board. It's more difficult to develop for. Yes, many aspects of the Legends Flashback series made it into this platform, however a lot of what you exploited has been fixed. All of the methods you use to exploit game loading has been fixed. Code execution cannot be done through a UCE with any kind of root privilege. 

 

Controller support has gotten wider, however it has not gotten better. Basically the system is looking to use a keyboard as a primary device. You can confirm this by hooking one up to the Core. A=A, B=B, Z=Z, Joystick=arrow keys. Otherwise it defaults to DInput. It has very little support for XInput. 

 

If you need help understanding anything, please feel free to ask. Having you and @rocketfan on board would be massive asset.

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Posted (edited)

Ok, so, I dont think Rocket owns a legends device, I could be wrong. As far as someone who knows how to build cores that dont work on these devices, he is the guy. Again, I dont make CFW, I just make box art. Although, I have a pretty damn good idea how a lot of the pieces fit together. I gathered that the system was looking for a keyboard, as you mentioned. But it Looksed like there was a firmware update on the 10th, I was just reporting what I found. What I gather I need to do is build my own joystick with SuzoHapps parts just like youre saying. lol :) I can do that. I wouldnt even care about trackball or spinner. Im an FGC kid.

 

Thing is, I already own real arcade machines and one converted to mame and stuff, so I mean... IDK. And fully understood that its not the LFB3, but like, where is the LFB3 at then? Its is the successor at the very least, Its got a better board, I get it. I also get that most of you have the cabinet, and i have a puck sans controllers. My cabinets are 4:3, not widescreen. so i cant just throw it in there. Bottom line, I LLLLOOOOOOOVEEE!!! The AFB9/G/X/D the LFB1/2/D!!! they are awesome. Im not just hating on the core. But the core feels like you are getting a replacement brain for the legends ultimate than an actual product. I would have rather had a Legends Flashback 150 games with more leaderboards. 

 

I feel like the Legends Arcade family of products is for the little kids named "jimmy" with the back pack at the arcade in the 90s trying to read you all the moves from the strategy guides. they would never actually play or were any good if they tried, but always was there leaning against the side of the cabinet everyday. These products are for those kids, because they wouldnt know any better.

Edited by Draxxon

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And I feel as though the Legends Flashback series was nothing but a cheap stepping stone to get to the Legends Ultimate. The Legends Flashback is merely a toy. Not meant to be take seriously by any actual arcade or emulation enthusiast. 

 

I can see already we are not of one mind. I wish you the best in your endeavors. 

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Posted (edited)

Yeah, I was trying to be clear. You are right. we are not of one mind.

The SGFB was the actual start start. There was no stepping stones to get from A to B, its the same thing.

The Legends ultimate arcade cabinet is the same cheap toy in a cheap box with cheap controls.

 

no serious pro FGC player would use a LU. Have a nice day!

Edited by Draxxon

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Posted (edited)

Only because nobody has taken it seriously. The hardware that ships with the Gamer Pro and Ultimate are arcade quality Suzo-Happ parts. The encoder is made by Ultramark. The display is damn good quality. 

 

Compared to an Arcade1Up, this is an arcade. And compared to an authentic arcade (I own several myself, as well as pinball machines), this is pretty close.

 

Your biased because you have a puck with a subpar controller and want a LFB3.

 

 

 

Edited by bobstossaway

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Posted (edited)
42 minutes ago, bobstossaway said:

Your biased because you have a puck with a subpar controller and want a LFB3.

 

or because I have a dedicated Mortal Kombat II machine with actual happ competition sticks and jamma, who knows, but its my honest review thread, so I doubt it.

again, the core/ultimate arcade IS the LFB3. And, I have one. PS5 pads are dope in game, aside from all the slowdown everywhere. its the menu cursor thats shit. I dont see how being duped to pay 100s of dollars more for the LFB3 in a shitty cabinet makes me the one who doesnt get it.

 

P.S. your damn good display is an LCD screen. not a crt. no arcade or emulator enthusiast is ever going to take the LU seriously. Being better than shitty ass arcade 1up isnt hard either. thanks for hijacking my review thread to try and recruit me, im done with all this bullshit.

Edited by Draxxon

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On 6/11/2021 at 9:09 PM, bobstossaway said:

I know the purpose of the file, but we don't know which flags are available for cores that aren't stock or even how to enable some of them on cores that aren't stock. Or even a complete list of available flags.

What Draxxon gave you is the wrapper script we use to start games.  With that you can save the Linux standard out/error and see a lot of what the retroplayer and cores report.  The libretro setup tends to report the core options which were set or not found, but if you build a core from source you can also just look at the code.  Also, there is decent libretro documentation online but they don't always give you the option strings you need - they have a very "retro-arch centric" view sometimes and more report the alias you will see in the retroarch UI.  I also use ghex (linux hex editor) to just browse the cores and retroplayer.  Option strings parsed out of a config file will be visible in plain text.  If you know some of them you can usually recognize more just from proximity in the file.

 

I do have a Legends Ultimate - I like it a lot for Arcade games, though I have a slightly better custom build running Emuelec (it has a good trackball, but no spinners).  I loaded a bunch of stuff via BYOG on the Legends Ultimate (no CoinOps or anything though) but my wife took it over to play Tetris Attack on SNES, so it might as well be a "Tetris Attack Ultimate"  LOL.  I think I mentioned it to Draxxon way back, but there is a lot of water under the bridge and we both focus heavily on these flashbacks!

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Posted (edited)

I forgot you had a legends ultimate.
Im also guessing you read the first new post or two and that was it, lol.

so, you wanna go to reddit and be a saUCE chef? and wrap an emulator and rom together 10,000 times? I dont.
I have a million ways to play all those games better. I wanna stick to adding 8bit Atari and Falcon ST games and making boxart for the Ataris.

But, what do you say @rocketfan? wanna go? lol.

You wanna know why the core/LU sucks, because its not cheap ass, and its not easy.
do you wanna know why the cabinet sucks? the tiny, overcrowded control panel and build quality.

its 2021, Ill give the LCD screen a pass. The sticks arent happ competitions, nothing else is.

I wasnt the one who decided to sell it w/o pads or inside a bunk ass stick or cabinet. AtGames dropped that ball.
Clearly someone at some meeting said "look at arcade 1-up, lets stick our cheap ass LFB3 in a cheap ass "arcade cabinet"

and charge 500+ bucks, lol. Hey lets throw a couple online leaderboards on the LFB2 as a test."

"Now we have got to get everyone saying this cheap ass arcade family shit is the future." GTFOH. lol.

and dont knock my $80 "subpar" pads. Those PS5 pads are the best thing going in any of this. They are bad ass.

Ill throw that puck in the trash can. Or give it to some kid for a gift like I did my LFB1 and Retrobit SuperRetroCade.

 

Edited by Draxxon

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I hardly keep up with stuff that could be done on these flashback devices!  I still have a pretty long list.  I'm not opposed to sharing a little of what we learned along the way though.  But most of that is already in the Forum threads or just study the Nexus files!  🙂

 

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Posted (edited)

Here is what I want.

 

1. The background images from LU. the blue grid tron looking BG.

2. Help solve the mystery of getting other controllers to work on the AFBX.

 

Rocket, did you notice how we keep hearing the LU is looking for a keyboard?

I wonder if its a clue, scoob, on what the L/AFBs are looking for?
i wonder if the fact that we cant get any other controllers to work for the FBs is related to the piss poor Legends core controller support?

Gotta say, I dont dig the mysterious new member first poster popping in my old opinion thread to for this either. "we" "you" "im not coinops" "im not sauce"

 

well im not the guy who hacked these systems or exploited anything. other people did and i just added art and games. 
I am the guy who already knows that these are cheap ass toy shitboxes from the dollar store, but collects mini systems

and doesnt want the atari mini to be such a boring joke and unwanted. 

 

sticking it in a box, is it MDF board i doubt it, that looks like an arcade 2-up doesnt change anything. 

again, i have a million ways to play all that stuff. My goal is to add the older forgotten games to the atari.

coleco, odyssey2, intellivision, atari 8bit. I personally dont have a million ways to play those, and nowhere near

this easily. Im not excited about putting metal slug or wind jammers on a core. im just not. spinners and trackballs for what?

I play stuff like Killer Instinct 1 and 2 on arcade, All i need is 6 buttons and a bat top stick.

 

Edited by Draxxon

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7 hours ago, Draxxon said:

thanks for hijacking my review thread to try and recruit me, im done with all this bullshit.

Recruit? No. Get some info from? Yes. I can see that was a pointless endeavor, and I'll leave you be. Again. I wish you the best in your endeavors.

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