Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Discussion of development of software for any "obsolete" computer or video game system.
lidnariq
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Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by lidnariq » Sun Jan 17, 2021 4:12 pm

The ones I know of:

Sega My Card (SMS, SG-1000, SC-3000)
HuCard ("TurboChip") (PC Engine / TurboGrafx)
Game Boy, Game Boy Advance - with shrouding
Nintendo DS (and DSi and 3DS)
Game Gear - also with shrouding
WonderSwan
anything that uses SD cards

It looks like there were several options for MSX-based machines, including the "Bee Card" and the "SoftCard".

Are there others that I'm missing?

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by rainwarrior » Sun Jan 17, 2021 4:27 pm

Nintendo Switch

lidnariq
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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by lidnariq » Sun Jan 17, 2021 4:30 pm

Oh, huh. I was incorrectly under the impression that those were SD cards mechanically.

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by tepples » Sun Jan 17, 2021 4:41 pm

VideoBrain Family Computer, Atari Lynx, and PlayStation Vita also have single-sided cart edge. So does PlayStation 2, as the console can load suitably signed software from the Memory Card (8 MB) except for the last revision that can't play Free McBoot. And if SD cards count, so do the USB flash drives used to distribute collector's edition physical copies of PC games in the post-disc era.

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by nocash » Sun Jan 17, 2021 4:56 pm

Makes me wonder if there are double sided 2-in-1 multicarts, or games with extra levels on side B : )
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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by Pokun » Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:57 am

Yeah but with only one card-edge that goes in both ways on a single-sided cartridge system.
The cartridge shell must be custom though, as for example a Game Boy cart shell must have a particular shape to work in all Game Boy models (there's that GBC<>GBA switch in the GBA). For it to be two-sided, I imagine it would need to be much thinner than a normal cartridge, since the card-edge is in the back part of the shell.



What about Fairchild Channel F? It looks like it's single-sided with 22 pins total.

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by lidnariq » Mon Jan 18, 2021 1:22 pm

Pokun wrote:
Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:57 am
For it to be two-sided, I imagine it would need to be much thinner than a normal cartridge, since the card-edge is in the back part of the shell.
... ok, now I'm thinking about the feasibility of stuffing 4 games in one card.
What about Fairchild Channel F? It looks like it's single-sided with 22 pins total.
Hm. Too bad it looks like the console has fingers on the non-contact side to hold onto it.

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by nocash » Mon Jan 18, 2021 4:15 pm

tepples wrote:
Sun Jan 17, 2021 7:34 pm
Like double-ended Atari 2600 cartridges by Xonox?
I didn't knew those. Looking at a picture of the interiors... they contain two PCBs with separate ROMs... A single PCB with single ROM might have been more elegant.
Four-enders should also work, perhaps with a dial to rotate a square PCB inside of a non-square cartridge, just to have a prehistoric equivalent to using a 4-position switch inside of a normal cartridge.
If it's double sided then it could even hold 8 games. With some supply diodes and excessive bus transceiver logic that might even work on double sided consoles like NES and SNES.
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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by rainwarrior » Mon Jan 18, 2021 8:57 pm

I feel like even the Xonox thing was specifically for marketing, and not for practical production reasons. Would it really ever be cost effective to double your external connectors vs. the usual multicart alternatives?

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by lidnariq » Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:31 pm

Card edges are almost free, but I have to admit I don't see any cost efficiency without reducing part count.

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by stan423321 » Thu Feb 18, 2021 2:40 am

Speaking of being double sided the other way around, would a PCB with both FC and NES connectors be significantly more expensive to produce than a regular NES one?

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by Gilbert » Thu Feb 18, 2021 6:38 am

stan423321 wrote:
Thu Feb 18, 2021 2:40 am
PCB with both FC and NES connectors
Just a random curious question for those who knows things better than me (i.e. nearly everybody here). If in a hypothetical situation the cart is plugged into(sandwiched between) both a FC and NES(possibly a late model top-loader so that this CAN be done) at the same time and then turn both systems on, what will happen? Will either one or more of these three things get deep fried? (Assuming both connectors of the cart are attached to the same mapper logic and chips, not just two separate games placed on either side of the board.)

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by rainwarrior » Thu Feb 18, 2021 11:05 am

Yeah, that would connect the two address busses directly to each other and they'd be in constant conflict. Aside from reading garbage from the ROM, I assume they'd start to overheat quickly.

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Re: Video Game Consoles with games stored in single-sided cards

Post by lidnariq » Thu Feb 18, 2021 11:57 am

stan423321 wrote:
Thu Feb 18, 2021 2:40 am
a PCB with both FC and NES connectors be significantly more expensive to produce than a regular NES one?
No, it wouldn't be significantly more expensive... It does pose a bunch of routing annoyances, but they're surmountable.

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