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Mission Statement

Active since 1997, we are an international force of enthusiasts interested in the following gaming/computer systems:

And their regional variants (Korean Samsung Gam*Boy, Taiwanese Aaronix consoles, etc.). All generally referred to as "Sega 8-bit" systems, being 8-bit Z80 CPU based Sega systems.

Our project:

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News

Virgin games prototypes & internal dev feedback letter

Posted Sat Jan 19, 2019 5:57 pm by Bock

Hello all and happy new year!
Entering our 22nd year and we are still finding new things to release :)

Today we have some cool stuff originating from Virgin Europe. They were unearthed and dumped/scanned by Radar who kindly submitted them here for release.

1)



To start off on something unusual, we have an internal fax/letter dated December 1992, where Sega are providing feedback to Virgin Games releasing the Master System version of the Mick & Mack Global Gladiators (codenamed McKids):

2)





We've got a Prototype of Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story for the Game Gear. Three test cartridge boards were found, two of them contained the final build of the game and the third one had seemingly an early version of it. It's not known exactly what the differences are yet, though on the surface from the first few levels it looks similar. Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story plays like something between traditional Kung Fu games and Shinobi, worth a try if you haven't played through it yet (and if you find differences with the final build let us know!).

3)





Two Master System cartridges were also found: Cool Spot, holding a build identical to the final game, and a Prototype of Super Off Road. Interestingly, this build of Super Off Road shows the staff credits on the title screen, while they were removed from the final build (someone maybe sent a fax requesting them to be removed!). It is also unclear what the other differences are!

Thanks Radar!

Missile Defense 3-D (SMS) & Bubble Bobble (GG) Prototypes & more

Posted Sun Sep 23, 2018 2:47 pm by Bock

Four releases today!







I found a Prototype of Missile Defense 3-D for the Master System. Among noticeable changes, this version uses a different music track on the title screen, which isn't part of the final version (incoming VGM pack update!)

As the game uses both Light Phaser and 3-D Glasses you'll need to enable them in your emulator of choice. Meka has menu options for it, you may also download and update your copy of the meka.nam database file if you want those settings to be applied automatically.





Also obtained a Prototype of Bubble Bobble for the Game Gear. Adapted from the Master System version (which itself was an extension of the Arcade game, and an unusually polished and improved port hence the "Final Bubble Bobble" title used in Japan). This prototype seems to exhibit a few differences: the menu flow is not the same as final build (see screenshots), the prototype starts you with 2 lives and infinite continues instead of 5 lives and 5 continues, missing Trademark mark on title screen and some difference in texts. They are probably more gameplay difference to be investigated further.Thanks Paul W!

This cartridge was was apparently a sample cart sent to EGM for review in 1994. According to the auction, "The review of this game can be seen in Electronic Gaming Monthly #63 October 1994, pages 42 and 226 (see pics 11 and 12)".



We also have the dump of USA version of Kawasaki Superbike Challenge for the Game Gear, which curiously was released until now (only the European dump was released and both cartridges are different).



Finally, we have a Correct dump of Sports Illustrated: Championship Football & Baseball for the Game Gear. The dump previously available on the internet (not an SmsPower dump) has 16 incorrect bytes following a pattern that suggest a hardware/software error interfered at the time of the original dumping. They likely didn't affect gameplay much, but they are now fixed. Thanks omonim2007 for the nudge regarding this long awaited dump (I actually made a mistake in my listing and had flagged it as "already dumped", omonim2007 noticed that!).


Finally I would like to thank everyone who has been helping me obtaining and purchasing cartridges and rare games. Most recently, Niloct, yaz0r, Joseph have been very helpful with obtaining things in variety of countries. Thank you.

Solomon no Kagi (Solomon's Key) Prototype + San-Nin Mahjong variation

Posted Sat Aug 04, 2018 2:48 pm by Bock

Hello,

Dump releases have been rare lately. But I still have a stash of things to sort and occasionally new dumps are being found!







I have recently acquired a Japanese prototype cartridge for Solomon no Kagi - Oujo Rihita no Namida / ソロモンの鍵 王女リヒタの涙 (Solomon's Key - The Tears of Princess Rihita) for the Mark III, the wonderful puzzle/action game by Tecmo. If you haven't had a chance to play the game (which was certainly more popular in the West due to its release on a certain Nintendo console), give yourself a favor today!

The cartridge held an earlier build of the game. It is unknown yet what the exact differences are between this build and the final version, but the code/data hold quite a fair amount of differences (a naive binary compare gives ~47k different bytes out of a 128k rom).



I also stumbled on a variation of the rare San-nin Mahjong (三人麻雀) for Othello Multivision / SG-1000, sporting a memory map layed over 40k (with 16k worth of actual data), similarly to other SG-1000 releases. Those variations were probably created in order to accommodate for different cartridge boards.

That's it for this time!

Sega Master System: a visual compendium (Kickstarter Book)

Posted Sat Jul 21, 2018 3:37 pm by Bock

Bitmap Books and Sam Dyer are working on a beautiful licensed Sega Master System book "Sega Master System: a visual compendium".

The project is currently being funded through Kickstarter, with only 10 days to go!. Additional pre-orders will allow the book to grow and add extra contents (it is currently aimed to be about 364 pages, maybe more add additional stretch goals are reached!). The final product should be available in February 2019 but remember it is will be more difficult to order it past the end of the crowdfunding round.

If you are interested, see the Kickstarter page for lots more details and pictures!
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2146199819/sega-master-system-a-visual-compendium







21st anniversary competition deadline March 27!

Posted Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:17 am by Bock

As usual, we will be having the yearly competition to celebrate SMS Power anniversary! The deadline is 27th March!

Coding competition
Write something that runs on a Sega 8-bit home system which isn't a hack. A game, a demo, a tool!

Hacks competition
Make a hack of a game for a Sega 8-bit home system.

Music competition
Make some music that either uses the sound chip(s) from an Sega 8-bit home system, or is an arrangement of music from commercial software for that system.

You can read more and find out how to enter here:
Competitions 2018 discussion thread.

Also see our previous competitions.

Off the Wall for Game Gear (and PC Engine)

Posted Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:48 pm by Bock

We are on a roll! After our previous set of releases for the 20th anniversary, I managed to get hold of another unreleased game.




Off the Wall for the Game Gear is an adaptation of the Atari arcade game, something between Breakout and Atari's Warlords, a multiplayer brick breaking game. The game was only released in the arcades, and this Game Gear version was ported by Teeny Weeny Games. This version appears to support 2 players via the Gear-to-Gear cable, but I haven't tried that yet. It's unfortunately lacking in the graphics development, and the developer decision to use 4x4 tiles for ease of deelopment makes for a very small playfield. Perhaps they could have managed to use 6x6 tiles?

I got hold of this 9 years after we first spotted the game in retro reviews, and 7 years after someone showed up with a prototype cartridge for it, which eventually got sold and went through other hands. Here it is today!

And...



We are going to break tradition here, because I also got hold of a PC Engine version of Off the Wall. This has been teased a few times over the years. first by Nekofan a long time ago, then more recently by Jun Amanai who programmed that port and apparently own some versions of it. Comparing the version I obtained with Jun's, it seems that Jun's version is more recent and complete. This PC Engine build here seems to be a work-in-progress debug version, where you can skip levels at the press of a button, and not all features have been implemented. Still a cool thing! The files are below.

20th anniversary eve: unreleased games, prototypes and rare Taiwanese games

Posted Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:30 pm by Bock

Tomorrow March 27, 2017 will mark the 20th anniversary of the site once called "SMS Camp"! The site was founded with the intent of dumping and releasing Master System games. We somehow kept on doing that! We also grew as a small community of hobbyist, programmers, hackers, mappers, musicians. And we miraculously kept every forums posts intact. I hereby nominate us as the most persistent and resilient website ever. Thank you everyone (and our partners/friends/families for coping with us nerds!).

We are running the traditional yearly coding / music competition with the flexible deadline of March 27-ish (any timezone), so you still have time to put an all-nighter and take monday off if you want to submit your entry! Sometimes after that we should start to post entries in the Competitions.

In the meanwhile, I have a handful of new ROM dumps to share.



1. We've got David Robinson's Supreme Court for the Game Gear, which is an unreleased game. It was apparently developed in 1991 by Acme Interactive Inc along with the Megadrive/Genesis version, and somehow the Game Gear version never saw the light of the day/ I've acquired two prototype copies of this a long time ago and it eluded my dodgy dumping hardware and adapters for a long time. Charles McDonald was kind enough to build a new custom adapter for me and finally today I have managed to get a reliable dump for this.

Here's the catch: those specific cartridges were demo versions hardcoded with a stream of scripted inputs data. But the game appears to be quite full featured (near completion), so someone should look into it and try to disable the demo mode. Anyone? *EDIT* See comments for the patch.



2. We've got Street Battle for the Game Gear, also unreleased. This is however none other than another one of Innovation Tech attempt to bring Korean games to the US, and the game is basically Jang Pung II with a new title. That specific build appears to be closer to the Korean Master System release, where one of the character was modified and it is also 512 KB (which mostly redundant data) unlike the more common Game Gear incarnation.



3. Brace yourself, we've got an absurdly rare Taiwanese incarnation of Hudson Soft's classic Star Soldier / Yǔzhòu zhànshì (宇宙戰士) for the SG-1000 which no-one appears to know about. This is a DahJee release on a beautiful green cartridge and it requires their custom adapter (also absurdly rare) to extend the SG-1000 II RAM so that it can run those MSX-1 hacks.



4. We've got Konami's arcade-gardening-shooting game Pippols / Shénqí huāyuán (神奇花園) for the SG-1000, also using the Jumbo/DahJee adapter and also a port from Konami's prolific era of MSX releases. As with every Taiwanese release this was pretty tough to find and it was a surprise that it even existed.



5. We've got a Super Off Road Prototype for the Game Gear, borrowed from an anonymous benefactor. The ROM image appears diff as radically different from the final retail version, and the zip file is 2 kb smaller which is a probable indicator that there's probably unfinished things in this version, but I haven't investigated it further yet.



6. Finally we've got the US version of Battletoads for the Game Gear which is pretty much an unexciting 3-byte header variation of the Japanese/European version, which for completeness I hadn't a chance to obtain until 2014 and the sort went into my unsorted stash for a long time.

That's it for today! See you tomorrow for the competition entries!


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