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PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 9:36 am 
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So my girlfriend came home for the second hand store where she works with a copy of Yoshi's Island. It came boxed but without a manual.

Now there are a couple of things really strange about this version:

1. The box and cardridge both are PAL shaped, yet they are covered with Super Famicom logo's.

2. The cardridge itself is PAL shaped, but had a Hong Kong serial on it.

3. The cardridge is PAL shaped, but wont work in 50 Hertz (PAL) mode, only in 60 Hertz (NTSC) mode.

4. The box is clearly PAL (JPN games have a vertical box) yet is says:

For use with the famicom control deck only.

Not compatible with super nintendo entertainment system control deck.

Here are some pictures:

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

i would like to know the story behind this version and what it could be worth.

Thanks,

Peter


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 9:48 am 
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The system was released in twelve or thirteen regions, you probably just have a cart that's not for the US, Japan or Europe. I would guess it was intended for the Hong Kong region. Unlikely to be a pirate cart, cloning the SuperFX probably wouldn't be worth the effort.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 11:21 am 
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byuu wrote:
Unlikely to be a pirate cart, cloning the SuperFX probably wouldn't be worth the effort.

If I remember correctly, YI didn't really use the Super FX except for rotating and scaling sprites. Most of the "Morphmation" stuff was Rad Racer-style graphic effects rendered with HDMA. That's why the GBA version of YI got away with not using a coprocessor: the GBA PPU has hardware affine transformation of sprites. A pirate version of YI would just have a different scaling chip. And pirates are known to make cuts when porting games to other hardware: look at the NES pirate version of Super Mario World.

Hong Kong was British during the Super NES era, which explains the general PAL-styling of the box and the English instructions.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 12:17 pm 
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Look at the bottom of the cart and tell us if there is just the main connector or if there are two smaller connectors on the left and right of the bigger one. Or better yet, open the cartridge and look for a chip labeled GSU-1 or GSU-2. Or just take a picture of the PCB.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 1:23 pm 
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Very interesting, I've documented lots of SNES serials and never knew an HKG existed. Can you open the cart and tell me the ROM serial? I'd suspect it says SNS-YI-0, the American ROM.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 2:18 pm 
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The japanese SFC is exactly like the PAL one, so are the cartridges (altough they have a different lockout chip). So it makes perfect sence that it's "for super famicom only" and that the cartridge is PAL shaped.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 15, 2009 5:25 pm 
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^^I have one and I can confirm this. The only differences are: 60 hz, the logo on the front and the lockout


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 12:54 pm 
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tepples wrote:
That's why the GBA version of YI got away with not using a coprocessor: the GBA PPU has hardware affine transformation of sprites.


so the SNES couldn't scale and rotate sprites? Does that mean the koopa kids were backgrounds?


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 1:11 pm 
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strat wrote:
Does that mean the koopa kids were backgrounds?

Yes. In Super Mario World, Bowser and the three Koopalings that used "rotatey" effects (Morton, Ludwig, and Roy) were backgrounds in mode 7, just as lots of NES bosses were backgrounds due to the 0.25x overdraw limit. Remember how plain the sprite-based "backgrounds" in those boss rooms looked?

Lynx had sprite scaling. Neo Geo had sprite scaling (shrink only). Super NES did not.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 7:40 pm 
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tepples wrote:
Super NES did not.


What? But clearly many SNES games scaled sprites in mode 7. Just look at cutscenes in many popular games. Just look at racing games.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 8:39 pm 
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You can scale sprites in software (Zelda 3 opening), or store multiple copies at different scales in the ROM. SNES devs were masters of working around hardware limitations.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 7:37 am 
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Byuu is right. F-Zero and Super Mario Kart used the same solution that NES games like Rad Racer used for sprite scaling: multiple copies of the sprites. It's just that VRAM DMA made this a lot easier to do on the Super NES than on the NES: the system could allocate one 16-tile area to each character and just blit new tile data there (is this Battletoads?).

Start Super Mario Kart battle mode: Toad vs. Koopa Troopa.[1] Inch up closer and look for the transitions where the kart's size suddenly changes. Then go far away and have the other player turn around in circles (hold right, rapidly press R). You'll see that the game has more directions for large scale than for small scale.


[1] In-joke: Wario stole Koopa's kart before MK64. Koopa died trying to get his kart back and showed up as Dry Bones in MKDS.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 11:54 am 
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I'm pretty sure Chrono Trigger does software sprite scaling for the racing minigame, and that Tales of Phantasia and Star Ocean also does software scanling at various places. But none of these game can scale a lot of sprites at once, probably because it consumes a lot of CPU power.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 4:38 pm 
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Wow, I honestly thought that it was hardware mode scaling, especially considering the slow processor that the SNES uses. I guess any system could be programmed with a software sprite scaling routine, but it runs very smoothly on the SNES. Maybe I'm just too much of a sucker for the SNES, which seems like it's capable of such amazing special effects. What about sprite rotation? That is often used in combination with scaling effects.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 5:30 pm 
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The SNES CPU gets a bad wrap on being slow. It's not as fast a clock rate as the PCE or Genesis but you can still get things done, you just can't be as wasteful.

SNES isn't bad for software scaling of some sprites since you have alot of VRAM and DMA. You could have a source image and scale it making copies in VRAM to avoid having to scale to a new size between frames. On that subject it would have been interesting what could have been different if the SNES were the same except running at a higher clock rate like 5.36mhz or 7.1mhz. Maybe then you wouldn't have had people bothering so much with in-cart chips.


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