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View topic - List of Incompatibilities among SMS Games + Hardware

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  • Joined: 04 Jun 2015
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 5:12 pm
R-Type for the Master System doesn't always seem to work on a Mega Drive I (PAL) with the Master System Converter.

I literally cannot figure out how it sometimes works and then doesn't for ages.

I can ALWAYS get it to work by turning the system on and THEN putting the game in and resetting, but that's surely not healthy...

Nowhere else on the internet mentions this.

Funnily enough, it apparently struggles when on a flash cart too, as I asked around on a SEGA forum once.
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  • Joined: 07 Jul 2014
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 7:05 pm
R-Type works fine on my Everdrive and I've just tested a PAL cartridge on an MS adaptor in a PAL Model 1 Mega Drive and it works fine.

I'm thinking your problem with the MS adaptor sounds more like a need to clean contacts.
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  • Joined: 03 Apr 2001
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  • Location: Asturias
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Post Posted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 10:15 pm
Emuaust wrote
Oddly I see that The Addams Family has been removed from the glitchy list, can someone explain why? The top of the screen is flickering on my NTSC SMS 1.
In case that somebody is documenting Mega Drive compatibility as well, I can confirm that The Addams Family doesn't boot at all on a Japanese MD.
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  • Joined: 07 Jul 2014
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Post Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:00 pm
Anyone have a suggestion for my Fantastic Dizzy dancing pixels problem as above?
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  • Joined: 14 Apr 2013
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Post Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:12 pm
TinpotGamer wrote
Anyone have a suggestion for my Fantastic Dizzy dancing pixels problem as above?

The game uses a different palette for the status bar than for the game screen. It writes to the palette during rendering of that line. These writes cause the written color to get visible.
For another game showing the similar artifacts check this thread out:
www.smspower.org/forums/14855-GunstarHeroesGGSpriteFlicker
This phenomenon is also know as "snow effect". Searching the forum for this term you might also find more information on it.
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  • Joined: 07 Jul 2014
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Post Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2015 7:05 pm
This effect doesn't appear on emulators or on videos on youtube that were directly recorded from a Master System, so I'm curious if this is a problem limited to the model 1 console.
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  • Joined: 31 Oct 2007
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  • Location: Estonia, Rapla city
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Post Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2015 8:50 pm
Those pixels are CRAM access dots, each time a color is written it is show on screen as the CRAM is single port. Write cannot be delayed and reads happen all time so the write takes precedence and the renderer shows the data being written to the CRAM on screen druing the color fetch.

Emulators don't emulate this behaviour.
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  • Joined: 14 Apr 2013
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Post Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2015 11:14 pm
TmEE wrote
Emulators don't emulate this behaviour.

Not quite right, you can setup Emulicious to emulate it. :)
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  • Joined: 28 Mar 2006
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Post Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2015 9:35 pm
Maybe some of the PAL games should be edited to clarify if the glitching is minor or major? I played Sonic 2 on a US SMS and didn't find the graphical glitching to be any worse than the glitching in US NES games like Mega Man 3 and Duck Tales. It's still 100% playable. Some of those games listed under PAL are also Brazilian games, which use a 60 Hz PAL standard, so the issue with the game may not be related to PAL/NTSC.
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  • Joined: 16 Dec 2009
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  • Location: Outback Australia
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Post Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2015 1:22 am
Monopoly added.

It doesn't work with a Mega Drive + Power Base converter. Only the title screen works then it shows the board and no text.
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  • Joined: 06 Sep 2015
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  • Location: Michigan
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Post Posted: Sun Sep 06, 2015 4:59 am
I didn't see it mentioned earlier, but playing Fifa Soccer (the Tec Toy release) on a US Genesis w/ Power Base Converter starts out fine, but graphically glitches out (all of the colors go dark, making it impossible to play), a couple of minutes in.

The game does work fine on my US Master System, so I don't think its a problem with the cartridge.
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  • Joined: 09 Sep 2015
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Post Posted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 1:53 am
Tycho wrote
Monopoly added.

It doesn't work with a Mega Drive + Power Base converter. Only the title screen works then it shows the board and no text.


US SMS Monopoly works on US Genesis + Power Base Converter for me with no problems, I played it like this for years because I did not own a Master System in those days, only Genesis + PBC. So perhaps only certain combinations of region/hardware have an issue with this game.
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  • Joined: 03 Apr 2001
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Post Posted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 10:52 am
stlpaul wrote
Tycho wrote
Monopoly added.

It doesn't work with a Mega Drive + Power Base converter. Only the title screen works then it shows the board and no text.


US SMS Monopoly works on US Genesis + Power Base Converter for me with no problems, I played it like this for years because I did not own a Master System in those days, only Genesis + PBC. So perhaps only certain combinations of region/hardware have an issue with this game.
PAL issue, maybe?
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  • Joined: 19 Feb 2009
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 5:41 am
Sonic 2 does work on a NTSC Master System
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  • Joined: 01 Jul 2015
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  • Location: Berlin
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:23 am
But Sonic 2 works with my Tototek flashcard on a japanese Master System using the adapter Bock made.
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  • Joined: 16 Sep 2015
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US card compatibility problem
Post Posted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 9:46 pm
Does anyone know which US cards work on the power base converter?

I know F-16 Fighting falcon doesn't work and i have Super Tennis and it only shows a red line in the middle of the screen for a second.

I tested it on the Model 1 Genesis. i want tp know if anyone had issues with this game or any of the Sega Cards?
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  • Joined: 02 Jan 2005
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Post Posted: Tue Aug 30, 2016 10:21 pm
Operation Wolf crashes in NTSC, but it was released in Brazil. Is it possible that version was fixed?
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  • Joined: 16 Dec 2009
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Post Posted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 3:24 am
Wonderboy in Monster World. Similar Problem, will not work with Power Base Converter, Crashes on second screen. PAL MD and Power Base Converter. I thought my copy was faulty!
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  • Joined: 02 Feb 2005
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 1:49 pm
I have yet to get Space Gun to work using a controller (SMS or MD) on a MD1 + MS Converter. It works fine using the Light Phaser, but with a controller only button presses register.

Also, when reaching the demon that teleports the Beast to the castle in Shadow of the Beast all the colours gets messed up.

I will try to clean the connectors, if that possibly could have something to do with it all... but other than that I do not know what could be the problem.
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  • Joined: 22 Mar 2015
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 5:22 pm
Legerdemain wrote
I have yet to get Space Gun to work using a controller (SMS or MD) on a MD1 + MS Converter. It works fine using the Light Phaser, but with a controller only button presses register.

I think Space Gun is a Light Phaser only game. Laser Ghost is the only game that works with both control pad and light phaser I believe. (Unless you include grenade use for operation wolf).
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  • Joined: 02 Feb 2005
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 7:43 pm
Though, it does say both ”Press the button” and ”Pull the trigger” on the title screen. Also, there is a crosshair on the screen which changes colour when swapping weapons... so I do think there is more to it than just being a light gun game.

This longplay shows the game being controlled by a controller:

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  • Joined: 22 Mar 2015
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 8:07 pm
Sure enough you are right. Just checked mine now.
Instruction manual says to plug control pad into port 2.
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  • Joined: 02 Feb 2005
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 10:26 pm
Concerning Shadow of the Beast, the connectors seems quite clean. The glitching colours does however not necessarily end up the same each time playing... though. And, once they have glitched during the teleport to the castle they stay that way during the rest of the game at least up until the boss of the shmup sequence. I will give it another go tomorrow.
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  • Joined: 05 Nov 2018
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  • Location: Seville, Ohio, USA
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Post Posted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:05 am
Tycho wrote

Games which are incompatible with SMS1 version 1.3 (i.e. Snail Maze only)


Which version of the system, USA? One of the European ones? A Brazilian one?

And which national versions of these ROMS. I don't recognize these as American titles

Similar questions with all of them, I currently have 2 European games, Marble Madness, (hoping the sports pad worked analoguely with the game, alas it doesn't) and Space Harrier 3D. All of the other games I own are American Systems, and I own the US Snail Maze version of the SMS.

Tycho wrote

- 4 Pak all Action
- Cosmic Spacehead
- Fantastic Dizzy
- Micro Machines
- The Incredible Hulk
- Street Fighter II
- Virtua Fighter Animation
- Japanese Games

Games which are incompatible with Official Sega MD1 --> MS converter

- F-16 Fighter (Card)
- F-16 Fighter (Cartridge)
- F-16 Fighting Falcon (Card)
- Monopoly
- Sega My Card (no picture, sound only)
- Wonder Boy in Monster World
- Games that aren't compatible with SMS1 ver. 1.3

Games which are not compatible with HES MD --> MS Converter

- After Burner (black screen)
- Alex Kidd: The Lost Stars (pink screen)
- Assault City (7034, didn't check 7040)
- Aztec Adventure (black screen)
- Golfamania (animated garbage)
- Golvellius (buzz w/ flickering screen)
- Parlour Games (garbage screen)
- Shinobi (black screen)
- Card Shape games (physical incompatibility)
- 3D glasses.

Games which are incompatible with SMD Controller
(However you can get these games to run with SMD Controller on a JP System)

I assume we are talking about a 3 button Genesis controller. and these are US ROMS on a US system. I need to know if I need a SMS controller modded for my fight stick.
Tycho wrote

- Bomber Raid
- Montezuma's Revenge
- Penguin Land
- Shanghai
- Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?
- Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? (Tec Toy w/ portuguese text)
- Wonder Boy in Monster Land

Games which are incompatible with SMS2

- Card shaped games
- Japanese Games
- 3-D glasses

Incompatible with the Tototek SMS-Mark III adapter on SMS (thanks to BrianC):


What version of the system/ROM combos are they for? Any particular console and corresponding ROM version?

And I understand is a joypad->joypad converter, not a light gun-> light gun converter. Also which Playstation light gun was it tested with, the Konami Justifier or the Namco GunCon?

Tycho wrote


-Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap (blank screen, a bit puzzled on this one since I have seen the video of it working with the gender adapter, though I read at another forum that someone else had the same problem)
-Wanted (red screen)
-Missile Defense 3D (works, but doesn't recognize the light phaser)
-Rescue Mission (ditto)
-Hang On/Safari Hunt (various glitches, may be a problem with the cart itself since I have to put it in a certain way on the regular SMS to get it working, though it works without glitches on the regular SMS)
-GP Rider


Glitchy/Incompatible on NTSC Master System (PAL only):

Back to the Future Part III
Battlemaniacs
Bram Stoker's Dracula
California Games II
Cosmic Spacehead
Desert Strike
Fantastic Dizzy
Home Alone
Micro Machines
Operation Wolf
Predator 2
Quest for the Shaven Yak
Sensible Soccer
Shadow Dancer - The Secret of Shinobi
Shadow of the Beast
Sonic Blast
Sonic The Hedgehog 2
Space Harrier (some versions)

Apparently I don't know whether the 3D version DOES work and the 2D version DOESN'T or if it's more random than that? Mine is European 3D and does work on a US Snail Maze SMS
Tycho wrote

Street Fighter II
Super Smash TV
Taito Chase H.Q.
The Newzealand Story
The Simpsons Bart vs the Space Mutants
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  • Joined: 10 Aug 2005
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Post Posted: Sat Feb 29, 2020 4:02 am
Bit of a thread necro but I am wondering what the actual problem with Sonic 2 is suppose to be? The game will run at the wrong speed if started on a 50hz console that's been modded to have a 60/50hz toggle switch and then switched to 60hz. It plays perfectly fine at 60hz if the console is set to 60hz when the game starts. I have played it through now on my 50hz/60hz modded console, an NTSC SMS and a CDX and not been able to find any issues. Am I missing something or should this game be removed from the list?
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  • Joined: 22 Feb 2020
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Post Posted: Sat Feb 29, 2020 1:00 pm
I'm new to this forum so I'm glad for the resurrection, otherwise I wouldn't know this existed. Great top post. There should be a database somewhere that catalogs all this.

One of the games listed on incompatible with NTSC systems irked me because I've had the game awhile. I went back and tested it.

Operation Wolf plays fine on my US Master System 1.3 (snail maze). There are some artifacts sometimes during shooting or getting shot when the screen flashes for a split second, but I don't know if that has to do with PAL or not. Anyway, the game is completely playable.

My Japanese SMS has been stuck in customs since Feb 11, but I'm interested in verifying some of the other games with my Raphnet adapter.
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