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Australian and New Zealand SG-1000/SC-3000 rental cartridges
Post Posted: Mon May 09, 2011 5:10 am
I've been researching PAL SG-1000/SC-3000 cartridge game releases, the Sega Computer Magazine scans on SMS Power have been quite useful for New Zealand releases.

At the time of the first issue around mid 1984 thirteen game titles had already been released;

N/Sub
Safari Hunting
Borderline
Congo Bongo
Yamato
Star Jacker
Champion Tennis
Monaco GP
Champion Baseball
Sindbad Mystery
Video Flipper
Pacar
Pop Flamer

Two more were due in June 1984;

Champion Golf
Exerion

All of these games were also released in Australia and Europe, with Europe receiving Golgo 13 aswell. Presumably the manga and/or anime was available in France at the time.

Towards the second half of 1984 the SC-3000H followed by the SF-7000 were released.

January 1985 releases;

Safari Race
Lode Runner
Champion Boxing

February 1985 releases;

Orgus
Flicky

All of these games were also released in Europe, along with Champion Soccer, presumably due to the popularity of soccer in Europe compared to the relative lack of interest of the sport in New Zealand and Australia.

Of these last five releases only Orgus and Safari Race were released in Australia.

After that no more games were released by any of Sega's western distributors. Sega were preparing for the launch of the Mark III later that year, and switched from cartridge to card releases for the Sg-1000 in Japan.

With the Western version of the Mark III being region locked it's possible that Sega didn't want to release SG-1000 cards which would fit, but not work in the Master System outside of Japan. This problem was avoided for SG-1000 cartridge software by the use of a different cartridge port on the Master System than used on the SG-1000 and Mark III.

Grandstand continued to sell their existing stock, but by the end of 1985 only had 13 of the original 20 game releases left, and they slashed the prices on those.

These titles were no longer available;

Safari Hunting
Champion Golf
Exerion
Safari Race
Lode Runner
Champion Boxing
Flicky

This seems to correspond with their rarity now, the later releases probably only receiving limited shipments.

Grandstand finally dropped support in mid 1986, passing on their remaining stock of eleven titles to "Sega Software Support".

A letter to Sega Software Support asks if the out of stock games Flicky and Lode Runner are ever likely to be back in stock, they reply "Sega Japan can give us no reason". It's clear that Sega have had no interest in SG-1000/SC-3000 outside of Japan since early 1985.

Sega Software Support went bust in early 1987, and passed their remaining stock on to "Poseidon Software.

Poseiden Software offered a rental scheme for SG-1000 games unavailable in New Zealand. The original six titles available were;

Elevator Action
Drol
Penguin Land
Championship Lode Runner
Lode Runner
Bank Panic

They now also had the following games for rent;

Dragon Wang
Choplifter
Sega Galaga
Wonderboy
Bombjack
Chack n Pop
GP World
Zippy Race
Ninja Princess
Zaxxon

The following titles were planned;

Hyper Sports
Hustle Chummy
C-SO
Hang On II
Ice Hockey
Pitfall II
Thinking Rabbit
Zoom 909
Rock n Bolt
Plus 4 new titles

Poseiden translated the instructions themselves, but not all instructions had yet been translated.

I assumed these were just imported from Japan, but it brought me to some threads, where Bock had posted pictures of Australian and New Zealand rental cartridges.

Which struck me as strange, as clearly these weren't Japanese retail releases, indeed many of these weren't even released on cartridge. They do look quite professional, but would Sega really have had the goodwill to specially manufacture a limited number of cartridges for each title just for an incredibly niche enthusiast market in Oceania, and even make separate labels for New Zealand and Australia? I think that unlikely, even more so for titles which had already been officially released.

Recently the 1987 cartridge "Link Word" by Compulink Australia turned up. This company had the ability to manufacture their own cartridges with actual Sega cartridge cases around the same time that the rental cartridges first appeared. Poseiden Software were also SC-3000 developers and publishers who would surely have had the ability, or at least contacts to manufacture their own cartridges. I doubt that dumping the roms would have been a problem for SC-3000 devs.

The threads where the original rental cartridges were posted by Bock are several years old, so has any new information appeared in the meantime?

Is it fair to assume that these are bootlegs and not official Sega cartridges?

Edit: Sorry, I had to remove all links including SMS Power links to be able to post this thread. I understand this is to stop spammers, but maybe this could still be achieved by only allowing links to this site to be posted by new or recent members
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Post Posted: Mon May 09, 2011 8:29 am
[Meta-discussion]

The spam link filter is a bit harsh but it's a lot harder to filter "no links except on-site". As it happens, you now have the required number of posts to be able to post links in the future.
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Post Posted: Mon May 09, 2011 6:49 pm
Very informative post, thanks for gathering those data!

The rental titles I have are: (those with black & white grid)

Bomb Jack
Champion Lode Runner
Drol
Girl's Garden
Lode Runner
Ninja Princess
Orguss
Sega Galaga
Sindbad Mystery
Star Force
Thinking Rabbit
Wonder Boy

Include some titles from the "planned" list above.

The Linkword cartridge comes with a Mark III shaped white box and the cartridge casing etc all seems to come from Sega.

I think that it would have been relatively easy for the companies in New Zealand to make those cartridges. Sega would probably be cooperative when it comes to providing empty cases and cartridge boards, and maybe Poseidon Software (or whoever made those cartridges) had earlier stock as well. Those cartridges as far as I remember uses EPROM chip so with such empty cases and board they could create those cartridges easily.
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Post Posted: Mon May 09, 2011 6:51 pm
As a side note I have recently obtained an enormous pile of SC-3000 related documents from New Zealand and Australia. We're talking ~15 cm high of flyers, catalogs and newsletters from different groups/clubs. It would take a long time to get those scanned but if there's something in specific you are looking for I could have a look.
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Post Posted: Tue May 10, 2011 7:45 am
Maxim wrote
[Meta-discussion]

The spam link filter is a bit harsh but it's a lot harder to filter "no links except on-site". As it happens, you now have the required number of posts to be able to post links in the future.


That's fine :)

Bock wrote
Very informative post, thanks for gathering those data!

The rental titles I have are: (those with black & white grid)

Bomb Jack
Champion Lode Runner
Drol
Girl's Garden
Lode Runner
Ninja Princess
Orguss
Sega Galaga
Sindbad Mystery
Star Force
Thinking Rabbit
Wonder Boy

Include some titles from the "planned" list above.


Yes, maybe some of the others are out there somewhere.

Quote
The Linkword cartridge comes with a Mark III shaped white box and the cartridge casing etc all seems to come from Sega.

I think that it would have been relatively easy for the companies in New Zealand to make those cartridges. Sega would probably be cooperative when it comes to providing empty cases and cartridge boards, and maybe Poseidon Software (or whoever made those cartridges) had earlier stock as well. Those cartridges as far as I remember uses EPROM chip so with such empty cases and board they could create those cartridges easily.


This does seem to be the most likely origin of these cartridges. With the way these were distributed as rental cartridges by mail order through enthusiast newsletters/fanzines there seems little chance that Sega would ever have any knowledge of this in Japan. Especially in a remote country like New Zealand in the pre-internet days.

Quote
As a side note I have recently obtained an enormous pile of SC-3000 related documents from New Zealand and Australia. We're talking ~15 cm high of flyers, catalogs and newsletters from different groups/clubs. It would take a long time to get those scanned but if there's something in specific you are looking for I could have a look.


That would be great. I'm specifically after dates for the original hardware launches in Australia and New Zealand, along with which titles were available at launch in each country. I'm also interested in release dates for subsequent software releases.

Grandstand seem to have listed their titles in order of release, as you can see I'm missing the dates for the first thirteen titles. I don't have any information on John Sands release dates yet.

N/Sub
Safari Hunting
Borderline
Congo Bongo
Yamato
Star Jacker
Champion Tennis
Monaco GP
Champion Baseball
Sindbad Mystery
Video Flipper
Pacar
Pop Flamer
Champion Golf Jun 1984
Exerion Jun 1984
Safari Race Jan 1985
Lode Runner Jan 1985
Champion Boxing Jan 1985
Orgus Feb 1985
Flicky Feb 1985

Incidentally, here's a John Sands brochure, but I'm sure you most likely have it in your collection already.

http://issuu.com/old-computers/docs/sega_sc3000h_john-sands-brochure

Thanks for offering to take a look.
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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 12:01 pm
I couldn't find my old pictures of the Rental cartridges, so posting some here.

New pictures that someone just put on eBay, selling 2 of those cartridges for outrageous amount.

BKK: hopefully the issue you had with links when originally posting was fixed? If you remember which link you intended to include you may want to add them to the post.
rentalcarts-01.jpg (407.31 KB)
rentalcarts-01.jpg
rentalcarts-02.jpg (576.73 KB)
rentalcarts-02.jpg
rentalcarts-03.jpg (453.25 KB)
rentalcarts-03.jpg

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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:43 pm
Nice! Here's the thread where you posted different style ones. I'll have to go through the scans section to find the pages that I originally meant to link, and there's probably a few things that I've learnt since then that I can add.
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Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:41 pm
"Thinking Rabbit"?
I assume that's Sokoban (as Thinking Rabbit was the company that originally made the game).
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Post Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 4:43 pm
Yes it is exactly that, they made the mistake, because it is the only readable English words on the title screen:

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Post Posted: Sat Dec 31, 2016 5:58 am
I just bought the Ninja Princess Aussie Rental from that Seller. It was expensive listed but he gave me a good deal (e.g. similar price to JP version) which I think we were both happy with. (It's a pretty fun game!)

I think that these two were from Blacktown City Library (the old one, Max Webber I think? Before they moved it), as was the Wonder Boy which the seller no longer has I don't think. They were on the top floor, the same floor as the VHS rental movies they had, but on the other side of the floor with other software. I remember my parents showed me them and I told them they're not for the Master System but were old technology when we were borrowing movies once.

The ones you have might have been from Bankstown City Library or maybe Liverpool. I saw them there back in 90s but I didn't have the console back then. Not many libraries had these as it wasn't a really popular computer here. The Commodore 64 was very popular before MS-DOS and the Macintosh became popular (Macs were especially popular in schools not for personal use)

(It's just from memory it was 20+ years ago so I am happy if someone proves me wrong!)
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Post Posted: Sun Jan 20, 2019 3:26 pm
Spotted an Elevator Action too.

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