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Light Phaser player 2 hacks (was: SMS Programming Request)
Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 8:45 am
Last edited by segasonicfan on Sun May 24, 2015 4:38 pm; edited 2 times in total
Hi all,
I have a slightly unusual request: I would like to ask the community if anyone could reprogram the lightgun games on SMS to run off a second player controller port instead of P1. The reason for this is that the Game Gear supports the light gun, but only on the second port. I tested it myself today (with a GGTV out and a CRT obviously) and it works!

So far, Safari Hunt, Wanted, Gangster Town and Rescue Mission have been patched by Calindro and are tested and working !

The remaining games to patch are:


Assault City (also compatible with standard control pad)
Laser Ghost (also compatible with standard control pad)
Marksman Shooting
Missile Defense 3-D
Operation: Wolf
Rambo III
Shooting Gallery
Space Gun
Trap Shooting


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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 8:59 am
Should be fairly easy, but did you confirm the gun really works, as in the game registers a hit related to where the gun is pointing?
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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 10:45 am
Maxim wrote
Should be fairly easy, but did you confirm the gun really works, as in the game registers a hit related to where the gun is pointing?


Not yet, but then again my gun is really finicky as these games are super touchy when it comes to brightness and contrast. Even on my regular SMS it took a lot of tweaking to get Rescue Mission to work. With a GGTV it will take even more tweaking. Gangster Town is the only game I can test for this, correct?

Safari Hunt is by FAR the easiest game to test with a light phaser - it detected on my stock SMS really well. Any chance you (or someone) could just program that one game to work with a 2P input? Then I will be able to know for sure. In the meantime I'll keep messing with the brightness setting. But it seems its seeing the gun at least.

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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 1:12 pm
With the attached patch it will read port B TH and TL also for the first player.

Edit:
And the other one swaps inputs for both players.

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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 7:45 pm
Calindro wrote
With the attached patch it will read port B TH and TL also for the first player.

Edit:
And the other one swaps inputs for both players.


Very nice of you to do this! However, Safari Hunt was the game I was hoping to have patched ;) Any chance you could do that one? It registers the lightgun the best of any game I've tried and would be hugely appreciated! :)

I'll give this one a go anyway though and see what I can adjust.

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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 8:44 pm
Oh sorry, I've attached a patch for Safari Hunt

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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 9:22 pm
IT WORKS!!!

So the "Master Gear Cable" didn't have +5v (the only input missing). Once I wired in my own 2P port plug with TH, TL, +5v, and GND, the light phaser worked like a dream :D

But words are cheap so, here's a video!
.be

Now I'll test that Safari Hunt patch- thanks!
I'm dying for a Rescue Mission patch.....that's one of my top 10 SMS games ^_^
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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 9:24 pm
One of these years I'll make a light phaser test program that shows you what the gun saw, and lets you choose various flash colours to experiment with the brightness. I think it would clear up a lot of the confusion around getting games to work...
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Post Posted: Sat May 23, 2015 9:33 pm
Maxim wrote
One of these years I'll make a light phaser test program that shows you what the gun saw, and lets you choose various flash colours to experiment with the brightness. I think it would clear up a lot of the confusion around getting games to work...


That would be terrific. I hate having to mess with the settings blindly.

So the Safari Hunt patch works like a charm, thanks Calindro!
The Gangster Town patches are non-working at the moment, the phaser is detected but it can only make shots up and down what appears to be a single line on the screen. i.e. I can't make shots on the left or right side of the screen.

I'm so excited to have these games reprogrammed for GG use. This is a dream come true ^_^
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 2:09 am
Ive found light guns to be rather picky too. Strangely some consoles seem better than others. If i use the same tv with same settings, same gun, same game and same leads etc. but different console it goes from barley working to working better than ever. Not sure why.. can only assume aging caps in the console?
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 6:38 am
wasup wrote
Ive found light guns to be rather picky too. Strangely some consoles seem better than others. If i use the same tv with same settings, same gun, same game and same leads etc. but different console it goes from barley working to working better than ever. Not sure why.. can only assume aging caps in the console?


Yeah, I had a similar issue. Maybe the capacitors on the analog video output (which affects brightness) changed from age? I thought my phaser was going bad but I tried it on a friends SMS and it was working well.

Funny fact: Played Safari Hunt on my GG today and it was the BEST my light phaser has ever worked! I got to level 21 and turned off the system only because my arm was hurting, lols.

but we're getting side tracked: now who here is willing to be a hero and reprogram Rescue Mission and the other Light Phaser games for 2P and make the Game Gear the ultimate SMS ?

:D
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 1:56 pm
I've attached patches for Wanted and Rescue Mission.

Edit: And I've fixed the issue with Gangster Town.
WantedP2.ips (50 B)

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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 4:35 pm
Calindro, you are the best!!
:D :D :D
I just played all 3 of these and they appear to work flawlessly! (once I crank up the brightness, heheh).

has anyone else found that lightgun games don't work as well in RGB? They seem to love composite...not sure if it's a setting thing or something else. Anyway, I'm happy to play these any way I can!
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 7:24 pm
I've attached patches for the rest of the games except Spacegun. I'm working on it right now.

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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 8:21 pm
Last edited by Maxim on Sun May 24, 2015 8:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
I'm adding them to http://www.smspower.org/Hacks/ControllerPatches now. Which are the targets for Marksman Shooting, Trap Shooting and Safari Hunt above? Each is in two different games.
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 8:29 pm
I'm curious about if you did a P1/P2 swap for Paddle Control/Sports Pad games. Since they have region detection and such, would they function properly?

It's been a few years since I did any work on SMS/GG related programming so I have no idea -- but it was something I was curious about. Any ideas anyone?
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 8:43 pm
Region detection wouldn't interact with a player 1/2 hack.
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 8:53 pm
I've attached a patch for Spacegun but I'm not sure if it works properly.

Maxim wrote
I'm adding them to http://www.smspower.org/Hacks/ControllerPatches now. Which are the targets for Marksman Shooting, Trap Shooting and Safari Hunt above? Each is in two different games.

Trap Shooting is for "Marksman Shooting / Trap Shooting / Safari Hunt" (e8215c2e)
Marksman Shooting is for "Marksman Shooting & Trap Shooting" (e8ea842c)
Safari Hunt is for "Hang On / Safari Hunt" (e167a561)

Thanks for adding them. I was about to ask if they should be added somewhere. :)
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 8:58 pm
Do they cover all the games in the multi-games or just the named one? (Hang On & Safari Hunt aside... let's not get into a light gun patch for Hang On...)
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 9:15 pm
Maxim wrote
Do they cover all the games in the multi-games or just the named one? (Hang On & Safari Hunt aside... let's not get into a light gun patch for Hang On...)

Each of them works on each of the games. But I didn't try Hang On. ;)

olaf wrote
I'm curious about if you did a P1/P2 swap for Paddle Control/Sports Pad games. Since they have region detection and such, would they function properly?

It's been a few years since I did any work on SMS/GG related programming so I have no idea -- but it was something I was curious about. Any ideas anyone?

I didn't swap players for paddle control/sports pad games, yet. Is there any need for that?
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 10:26 pm
Well, I think some are only 1 Player but I may be wrong. I was just wondering.
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Post Posted: Sun May 24, 2015 11:38 pm
olaf wrote
Well, I think some are only 1 Player but I may be wrong. I was just wondering.


I think you misunderstand the purpose of this thread. Only games that make use of the TH signal are incompatible to use on an unmodded Game Gear. The TH signal is available internally, but only for the 2P port. So the games are reprogrammed to make this now the1P port (software-wise).

As far as I know, only light gun games use the TH line. Does anyone know of anything else that would make use of it?

and Calindro is a godsend! I just have to say thank you once more! I am eternally in your debt sir, let me know if I can be of any help for hardware hacks or repairs in the future!

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Post Posted: Mon May 25, 2015 12:18 am
Yeah, I understood that part. I was just wondering if the Paddle Control and the game side of things would have any problems with region detection. You can't play Alex Kidd's BMX game for example without a Paddle Control, so I'd be interested in seeing how it faired on a GG.
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Post Posted: Mon May 25, 2015 12:54 am
olaf wrote
Yeah, I understood that part. I was just wondering if the Paddle Control and the game side of things would have any problems with region detection. You can't play Alex Kidd's BMX game for example without a Paddle Control, so I'd be interested in seeing how it faired on a GG.


The GG works just like a regular sms minus TH for player one. so if u install a port for the paddle controller to plug in, it will work fine since it uses buttons 1 & 2:
http://www.smspower.org/Development/Paddle

i have documented elsewhere how to change regions on the Game Gear from JP to PAL to US. with these phaser hacks and wasups 3D board hack, the GG can be modded to be a full SMS in every way except for 2 players simultaneous lightgun support on Gangster Town. Pretty great I think :)
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Post Posted: Mon May 25, 2015 11:03 pm
Last edited by enik on Tue May 26, 2015 12:11 am; edited 2 times in total
segasonicfan wrote
So the "Master Gear Cable" didn't have +5v (the only input missing). Once I wired in my own 2P port plug with TH, TL, +5v, and GND, the light phaser worked like a dream :D


Are you sure the missing line was +5v instead TH? Are your cable an official product?

olaf wrote
I'm curious about if you did a P1/P2 swap for Paddle Control/Sports Pad games. Since they have region detection and such, would they function properly?


I think it's a similar situation to what happens with the SMS: if you have a Japanese GG, paddle games would work, else you would need yet another hack, like the one done before by segasonicfan to play Pop Breaker.

Calindro wrote
I didn't swap players for paddle control/sports pad games, yet. Is there any need for that?


I guess he don't want to modify the GG hardware to play paddle games and the game for the Japanese Sports Pad. For US Sports Pad games, he may need a custom cable, as happened to segasonicfan, and those games also use TH as output, what haven't been tested yet, but probably works.

segasonicfan wrote
The world's first light phaser playing on Sega Game Gear! (as far as I know..)


Congratulations segasonicfan and Calindro!
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 12:06 am
Quote
Are you sure the missing line was +5v instead TH? Are your cable an official product?

No, it's not an official product. It was a 3rd party cable made for plugging SMS controller into the EXT out of a Game Gear. yes, I am 100% sure it has TH and is missing +5v. Strange, I know.
Quote

I guess he don't want to modify the GG hardware to play paddle games and the game for the Japanese Sports Pad. For US Sports Pad games, he may need a custom cable, as happened to segasonicfan, and those games also use TH as output, what haven't been tested yet, but probably works.

from the wiki:
"The "export paddle" would appear (based on examining code in Out Run 3D) to not have an internal clock to toggle which nibble is returned; instead, the TH line is configured as an output from the console and is used to select which nibble is read. The code must then include a delay to allow the paddle hardware to respond, and check that the TR value has changed. This operation seems to be similar to how the Sports Pad works. "

Ah Ok, so they do use TH. I didn't know that. Can someone tell me a list of games that use the Sports Pad? If Calindro is willing, it would be wonderful to have them patched and thus, have the GG be fully compatible with all SMS games :)

So far there are these US games:
Great Ice Hockey
Sports Pad Football
Sports Pad Soccer

and these JP games:

BMX Trial: Alex Kidd (required)
Galactic Protector (required)
Megumi Rescue (required)
OutRun (optional)
Super Racing (optional)
Woody Pop: Shinjinrui no Block Kuzugi (required)

Does Outrun 3D require it? I'm confused at the mention above. So from what I understand, with a region switch to JP and a Japanese paddle you could make it work with a simple port but if you want to use the more common US sports paddle, the roms would need to be patched for player 2 > player 1.
Some more interesting info here:
http://www.smspower.org/forums/14529-SportsPadControllerSomewhatUsableWithPaddle...

lols at how confusing this is. and looking at ebay, the JP paddle runs $140++ nuts.

Quote
Congratulations segasonicfan and Calindro!

Thanks :)

EDIT: It looks like the "sports pad" and the "export paddle" are different controllers, heh. So basically if you use a Japanese paddle and put the GG in JP mode it should work fine. I might purchase this, which would work with everything:

http://www.raphnet-tech.com/products/brd_sms_paddle/index_fr.php
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 12:55 am
segasonicfan wrote

from the wiki:
"The "export paddle" would appear (based on examining code in Out Run 3D) to not have an internal clock to toggle which nibble is returned; instead, the TH line is configured as an output from the console and is used to select which nibble is read. The code must then include a delay to allow the paddle hardware to respond, and check that the TR value has changed. This operation seems to be similar to how the Sports Pad works. "

I was talking about the official Paddle Control, released in Japan, that works only when the games designed for it detect the system region as Japanese. Those games, when detect the region as Export, switch to another mode, that is incompatible with the original Paddle, that's why there's a description of an hypothetical "export paddle", that wasn't released. However, that incompatible mode used for Export systems is similar "to how the Sports Pad works" (at least the US Sports Pad), that's why some games are "somewhat usable" as you saw at the page you linked below:

segasonicfan wrote

So from what I understand, with a region switch to JP and a Japanese paddle you could make it work with a simple port but if you want to use the more common US sports paddle, the roms would need to be patched for player 2 > player 1.
Some more interesting info here:
http://www.smspower.org/forums/14529-SportsPadControllerSomewhatUsableWithPaddle...


Right for the Paddle, and the switch isn't required if there's the possibility to patch the ROMs to always detect the system as JP. Keep in mind there are three devices involved: Paddle Control and two versions of the Sports Pad (not Paddle), US and JP. There are the games designed for the US Sports Pad, but if you have an Export SMS and got paddle games, you could try to play them with the Sports Pad, as some people tried with some success, but no patch or P1/P2 swap is used in this case.

segasonicfan wrote

Ah Ok, so they do use TH. I didn't know that. Can someone tell me a list of games that use the Sports Pad? If Calindro is willing, it would be wonderful to have them patched and thus, have the GG be fully compatible with all SMS games :)


Games for the US Sports Pad use TH, but not the games for the Paddle or the game for the JP Sports Pad (only the Japanese Sports Pad Soccer cartridge). You already built the list you asked, just consider there are two Sports Pad Soccer versions (the JP cartridge and the Sports Pad mode of the World Soccer cartridge):

segasonicfan wrote

So far there are these US games:
Great Ice Hockey
Sports Pad Football
Sports Pad Soccer


But these below are the Paddle games:

segasonicfan wrote

and these JP games:

BMX Trial: Alex Kidd (required)
Galactic Protector (required)
Megumi Rescue (required)
OutRun (optional)
Super Racing (optional)
Woody Pop: Shinjinrui no Block Kuzugi (required)

Does Outrun 3D require it? I'm confused at the mention above.


No, it's optional for that game.
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 8:28 pm
Calindro, thank you so much for creating these! It'll make using a ROM cart soooo much easier, since people won't have to fumble with swapping the controller and gun. I tested them all and a few had issues:

Assault City - The patch didn't seem to work...the gun only worked in controller port 1.

Marksman Shooting - Regardless of which game I shot at during the title screen, it only loading trap shooting.

Missile Defense 3D - The screen would flash with the gun in the 2nd controller port, but it wouldn't register any hits. The rom I used to patch works fine before patching (with the gun in port 1, obviously).

Rescue Mission - same as above

Space Gun - It wouldn't load at all, it just stayed at a black screen.

Wanted - It wouldn't load at all, it just stayed at a red screen.

Obviously, there's a chance my roms could be the issue, but I'm wondering if anyone else had similar issues? Once again, thanks so much!
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 9:50 pm
Rescue Mission, Wanted, Gangster Town, and Safari Hunt worked without issue on my GG with player 2 and a GG Everdrive cart. Sounds like you might have bad roms or brightness issues. Though I havent tested those other games.
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 10:34 pm
RetroRGB wrote
Calindro, thank you so much for creating these! It'll make using a ROM cart soooo much easier, since people won't have to fumble with swapping the controller and gun. I tested them all and a few had issues:

Assault City - The patch didn't seem to work...the gun only worked in controller port 1.

Marksman Shooting - Regardless of which game I shot at during the title screen, it only loading trap shooting.

Missile Defense 3D - The screen would flash with the gun in the 2nd controller port, but it wouldn't register any hits. The rom I used to patch works fine before patching (with the gun in port 1, obviously).

Rescue Mission - same as above

Space Gun - It wouldn't load at all, it just stayed at a black screen.

Wanted - It wouldn't load at all, it just stayed at a red screen.

Obviously, there's a chance my roms could be the issue, but I'm wondering if anyone else had similar issues? Once again, thanks so much!

The patches you didn't mention work flawlessly? All the issues you've described can be caused by applying the patch to the wrong rom.
Compare your checksums to the following:
Assault City: 861b6e79
Marksman Shooting: depends on the game (see my earlier post)
Missile Defense 3D: fbe5cfbb
Rescue Mission: 79ac8e7f
Space Gun: a908cff5
Wanted: 5359762d
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 10:44 pm
Thanks for the response!

Calindro wrote
The patches you didn't mention work flawlessly?

Correct: Gangster Town, Laser Ghost, Operation Wolf, Rambo 3, Safari Hunt, Shooting Gallery and Trap Shooting all worked perfect.

I have a rom that's three games in one: Marksman Shooting & Trap Shooting & Safari Hunt. Is there a way to patch that one rom to have all three games use the light gun in the second port? Maybe that's easier overall for people, since it's only one rom to worry about?


Calindro wrote
All the issues you've described can be caused by applying the patch to the wrong rom.

That's what I figured. I'll try and download a new romset and see if that helps. Also, I'm using an MK-2000 Japanese SMS and the Gender Adapter I purchased from this site. I tested the games with the other adapter (the one that plugs into the top cartridge slot) and the problem didn't seem to change. Do you think that could make a difference?
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Post Posted: Tue May 26, 2015 11:02 pm
RetroRGB wrote
Thanks for the response!

Calindro wrote
The patches you didn't mention work flawlessly?

Correct: Gangster Town, Laser Ghost, Operation Wolf, Rambo 3, Safari Hunt, Shooting Gallery and Trap Shooting all worked perfect.

I have a rom that's three games in one: Marksman Shooting & Trap Shooting & Safari Hunt. Is there a way to patch that one rom to have all three games use the light gun in the second port? Maybe that's easier overall for people, since it's only one rom to worry about?

Read here:
http://www.smspower.org/forums/15523-LightPhaserPlayer2HacksWasSMSProgrammingRequest#87201
You need to apply the Trap Shooting P2 patch to your rom if the checksum matches.


RetroRGB wrote
Calindro wrote
All the issues you've described can be caused by applying the patch to the wrong rom.

That's what I figured. I'll try and download a new romset and see if that helps. Also, I'm using an MK-2000 Japanese SMS and the Gender Adapter I purchased from this site. I tested the games with the other adapter (the one that plugs into the top cartridge slot) and the problem didn't seem to change. Do you think that could make a difference?

The patches don't make major changes to the roms (if applied to the correct roms). They just change a few bits in a few instructions. So if the unpatched game works the patched game should work as well. But if you're applying the patch to a wrong rom an instruction might be replaced by a completely different instruction instead. For example a jump could be turned into something else probably causing data to be executed as instructions. That can obviously lead to any behavior you can imagine.
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Post Posted: Wed May 27, 2015 7:00 am
Quote
have a rom that's three games in one: Marksman Shooting & Trap Shooting & Safari Hunt. Is there a way to patch that one rom to have all three games use the light gun in the second port? Maybe that's easier overall for people, since it's only one rom to worry about?


Great idea, I think. Though Calindro has already earned their weight in gold ;) This will make using the flash cart more convenient - I hadn't thought about that!

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Post Posted: Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:39 pm
Calindro wrote
I've attached patches for the rest of the games except Spacegun. I'm working on it right now.


hello,

I believe I found a problem with the Laser Ghost patch. Although it does allow you to use the light phaser in the player 2 controller input, I believe that the "special shot" button, which is supposed to be triggered by the opposite controller's buttons, has not been remapped to the player 1 controller input.

The reason I say this is that when you discover a "S" icon, it's immediately used by simply pressing the gun trigger, which it should not do. It's supposed to be saved and triggered by the left-hand player's control pad.

Any chance this could be fixed?

Thanks a lot, Carl
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Post Posted: Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:52 pm
carljr17 wrote
Calindro wrote
I've attached patches for the rest of the games except Spacegun. I'm working on it right now.


hello,

I believe I found a problem with the Laser Ghost patch. Although it does allow you to use the light phaser in the player 2 controller input, I believe that the "special shot" button, which is supposed to be triggered by the opposite controller's buttons, has not been remapped to the player 1 controller input.

The reason I say this is that when you discover a "S" icon, it's immediately used by simply pressing the gun trigger, which it should not do. It's supposed to be saved and triggered by the left-hand player's control pad.

Any chance this could be fixed?

Thanks a lot, Carl

Hi Carl,

thanks for reporting.
I've uploaded a new version that fixes this issue.
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Post Posted: Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:55 pm
Calindro wrote
carljr17 wrote
Calindro wrote
I've attached patches for the rest of the games except Spacegun. I'm working on it right now.


hello,

I believe I found a problem with the Laser Ghost patch. Although it does allow you to use the light phaser in the player 2 controller input, I believe that the "special shot" button, which is supposed to be triggered by the opposite controller's buttons, has not been remapped to the player 1 controller input.

The reason I say this is that when you discover a "S" icon, it's immediately used by simply pressing the gun trigger, which it should not do. It's supposed to be saved and triggered by the left-hand player's control pad.

Any chance this could be fixed?

Thanks a lot, Carl

Hi Carl,

thanks for reporting.
I've uploaded a new version that fixes this issue.


I can confirm that this has been fixed and works if you apply it to the original ROM (not one that is already been patched, of course).

Thanks for the immediate feedback quick fix!

Now, I was wondering is there are more controller hacks, not like these exactly, but ones that might take advantage of the Sega Genesis controller hooked into the Master System (i.e. remapping the pause feature of each game to the Genesis's START button) -- I've heard it talked about but never seen the patch.

I guess I will start poking around myself to see if I can manage it.

Thanks again, Carl
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 8:44 pm
I've been trying these out on my own modded game gear like segasonicfan made and for the most part they've been working great. I had some issues with a few games until I cranked up my TV brightness and/or used composite instead of RGB, while other games worked perfect.

I know it's been a while, but thanks for making these Calindro!

I noticed someone pointed out a control issue with laser ghost, and I might have another small one I've noticed. In operation wolf, when you lose it says to press 1 to quit and 2 to continue, but only button 2 on the player 2 port seems to continue the game. to continue you have to unplug the gun and plug in a controller to press 2 to continue. Is this how the original works but with player 1 or did that button press not get swapped?

It also looks like the last game patch Calindro made for "Space Gun" didn't get put into the "controller hacks" section of the site. I missed it initially when I converted my roms until I read through this thread.

One final thing - I'm also having the issue with "Wanted" coming out to be a red screen like mentioned by retroRGB, until I realized the original rom did not work either. However I tested the same roms on a different game gear and they loaded up fine. that one didn't have a TV out so I couldn't test it, but for some reason the one game gear would only display a red screen. This game gear does have an FM mod, so I wonder if the FM is interfering with the game in some way since retroRGB mentions he's using a japanese MK-2000? anyone ever played "Wanted" on a MK-2000?
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 11, 2021 11:14 am
asdfqwer426 wrote
I've been trying these out on my own modded game gear like segasonicfan made and for the most part they've been working great. I had some issues with a few games until I cranked up my TV brightness and/or used composite instead of RGB, while other games worked perfect.

I know it's been a while, but thanks for making these Calindro!

I noticed someone pointed out a control issue with laser ghost, and I might have another small one I've noticed. In operation wolf, when you lose it says to press 1 to quit and 2 to continue, but only button 2 on the player 2 port seems to continue the game. to continue you have to unplug the gun and plug in a controller to press 2 to continue. Is this how the original works but with player 1 or did that button press not get swapped?

It also looks like the last game patch Calindro made for "Space Gun" didn't get put into the "controller hacks" section of the site. I missed it initially when I converted my roms until I read through this thread.

One final thing - I'm also having the issue with "Wanted" coming out to be a red screen like mentioned by retroRGB, until I realized the original rom did not work either. However I tested the same roms on a different game gear and they loaded up fine. that one didn't have a TV out so I couldn't test it, but for some reason the one game gear would only display a red screen. This game gear does have an FM mod, so I wonder if the FM is interfering with the game in some way since retroRGB mentions he's using a japanese MK-2000? anyone ever played "Wanted" on a MK-2000?


This is outstanding info -- thank you!

This project never seem to get enough love back in the day, so I'm glad to see someone making use of it. I was especially annoyed to see people on youtube sharing this hack without giving any credit to myself or calindro.

Anyway, it's a fun and easy hack to get light gun support. Note, the Light Phaser is very finicky and sensitive to screen brightness, which is not something specific to the Game Gear.

Hopefully somebody edits the ROMs for these final tweaks sometime :)

-SSF
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DIY USB powered adapter slotting between Master Gear cable and Phaser to provide 5v to Phaser?
Post Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2021 7:22 pm
Sorry to revive this thread. I really love the idea of lightgun games from my GameGear. I'm trying to get lightguns working on my own McWill modded gamegear with TV out. I'm trying to go add the 5V for the Sega Phaser lightgun via USB power instead. I'm fairly new to making things off the top of my head without a tutorial.

I'm trying to make a USB powered adapter cable that slots between the male DB9 end of the "Master Gear" link cable, and female DB9 of the Phaser lightgun.

I wanted to check if I've got the correct idea for wiring my adapter:

Basically I'll solder the red USB power lead onto pin 5 of my DIY adapter's male end DB9 only (the end that the light phaser will end up pluggin into). For the female end (which plugs into the Master Gear link cable) I'll leave pin 5 completely free and disconnected. 

For ground, I'll connect the USB ground black wire connected to pin 8 (ground) on both ends in my DIY adapter.

In my DIY adapter, I'll connect every pin between the male and female DB9's  EXCEPT pin 5 (which receives 5v from USB to pin 5 of the male end only). Is this correct?

Is leaving  the USB 5v connected to only one end (and leaving the other end empty) the correct way? Do I need to add any other components anywhere in this method?

My McWill + VGA-out gamegear is my pride and joy and took me a lot of time, money and effort to mod - I don't want to destroy it with a potentially hazardous mod.

(Diagram to hopefully demonstrate my point)
Gamegear USB lightgun adapter idea_1.jpg (287.4 KB)
Usb powered Gamegear DIY adapter
Gamegear USB lightgun adapter idea_1.jpg

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Post Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2021 8:27 pm
Everything sounds right, in fact one of the few videos I found on YouTube of someone doing this used an in line adapter just like that.

I just want to confirm however that you're using rgb out through the vga port, then on to SCART, not actual VGA output right? My understanding is that VGA is a 31khz signal that won't work with the light gun.

Also just a heads up that a lot of my games really struggled to pick up anything but composite output when I do this. RGB like in SCART worked but I had to max out the brightness.

I personally found that the master link end of that cable could be disassembled, so I moved a pin from button 2 pin to 5v and cut the stock db9 port off to wire in my own. I'm thinking of buying another just to steal a pin out of to make the master link cable actually have all 9 pins, but your solution should work if the video signal is compatible and the screen is bright enough though.

Edit: quick found that video. His adapter at about 4:50.
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Post Posted: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:31 am
>>Sorry to revive this thread.>>

Thanks for posting! That's exactly what this thread is here for.
As I tell people frequently (https://segasonicfan.wixsite.com/retro/links), if you want to get advice for repairs, this is the way to go :)

>>I'm trying to go add the 5V for the Sega Phaser lightgun via USB power instead. >>

I'd actually recommend against this. Using multiple power supplies can lead to additional headaches. There's no reason you can't use the built in 5V of the GG, is there?

>> I found on YouTube of someone doing this used an in line adapter just like that. >>

That guy ripped me and Calindro off - took credit for our work and makes no mention of us :( Also, didn't do a great job with the mod.

>>Also just a heads up that a lot of my games really struggled to pick up anything but composite output when I do this. RGB like in SCART worked but I had to max out the brightness. >>

This is an issue with the light phaser, not with the mod. The light phaser is very sensitive to brightness on your television. It's older technology, and I think it was a trade-off for the high precision of the phototransistor.

>>I personally found that the master link end of that cable could be disassembled, so I moved a pin from button 2 pin to 5v and cut the stock db9 port off to wire in my own. I'm thinking of buying another just to steal a pin out of to make the master link cable actually have all 9 pins,>>

Please dont destroy vintage cables for this mod. Consider just installing a DB-9 or JST-PH-09 connector or similar. This stuff is all getting increasingly rare and expensive, and there's no need to destroy vintage gaming items for upgrades. Lots of other options available :)


And last, due to a previous request on this forum, I made a detailed video for how to do this mod:

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Post Posted: Fri Apr 02, 2021 2:42 pm
Thanks for chiming in, you know a lot more about hardware than I do, so I'm sure you'd know if the USB thing could cause issues.

I watched that video at one point, although I wasn't paying much attention to what he was saying at times, I didn't get the impression he was taking credit for the patches. In fact, I think that's how I found this thread since he links right here in his comments. Of course mentioning those who did the coding for the patches would have been in good taste for sure. I really just took his video as more of a "show off my own game gear and how I did it" kind of thing that just happened to include a light phaser mod. I never once thought he was involved at all, just showing off something he enjoyed making. He goes over lots of his other mods and how he does them too.

Your video is definitely superior for anything attempting to do the specific mod themselves, you go over schematics and points and where things are. Just seems like two very different videos with different intents and audiences, but similar topics.

>>This is an issue with the light phaser, not with the mod. The light phaser is very sensitive to brightness on your television. It's older technology, and I think it was a trade-off for the high precision of the phototransistor. >>

I didn't mean to imply it was an issue with the patches, you're absolutely right, it's just how light guns and the phaser works.

>>Please dont destroy vintage cables for this mod. Consider just installing a DB-9 or JST-PH-09 connector or similar. This stuff is all getting increasingly rare and expensive, and there's no need to destroy vintage gaming items for upgrades. Lots of other options available :) >>

I suspect the current person requesting was trying to avoid cutting another controller port into their game gear, and just wasn't sure where to get 5v power from without it. it's also why I chose to modify a cable. The line between "modern upgrades" and "destroying vintage hardware" is a bit of a moving target in my opinion, but least destructive options are always best. I would love for some of the retro stores that are popping up more and more to find or have made some solderable link cable connectors so I could just build my own, but as far as
I know the only ways to get that connector are the VS cable and the Master Link cable. The master link is MUCH cheaper. For now.
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5V from built in source looking tricky/unlikely
Post Posted: Fri Apr 02, 2021 8:08 pm
Thanks for the help guys. Loving the fact I'm getting solid advice about this so quickly!

So I'll add some background about my gamegear (European 2 asic: 837-7996). I've already added 2 additional ports on the rear shell myself:
- a 15 pin dsub for the McWill VGA. (I connect this to a CRT using an RGB scart cable from videogameperfection - see below)
- a DB9 port for player 1 megadrive/genesis controller input (using the Pxlmod game gear controller kit).

.
.


>>There's no reason you can't use the built in 5V of the GG, is there? >>


@Segasonicfan I'm not looking to cut any more extra ports in my Game Gear at this stage (pretty much as asdfqwer426 mentioned). I'm not sure if I could feasibly add another port for player 2 due to space. I'm also not keen on repurposing the current player 1 DB9 port on my gamegear as a player 2 port as I wanted the player 1 controller option when using my Gamegear as a console.

I made it a point to ensure that all ports I add are flush to the shell and that the vga and DB9 ports use JST connectors to allow easier detatchment of the rear case (see photo) -  so I'll find it trickier with inner space and wire routing.

I also don't know how much more I can rework my setup to obtain the 5v and other relevant signals internally especially with my pxlmod board in place (which sadly lacks the TH signal).

I can get player 2 easily for now by using a Master Gear link cable, so I'm not intending to go all out for an internal player 2 solution. In fact, I think with how my gamegear is set up currently, the Master Gear cable is likely the only way I'll get player 2. Interestingly, the Pxlmod board does have solder points for player 2 - which I assume uses points from the extention port to make it work (but I don't know if there's a way to work the TH signal onto this kit board)

When powering through a wall outlet, I'm currently using the JellyBelly customs 9v USB cable to power my GameGear via a UK Amazon Basics multi port USB charging hub. I thought I'd simply use that hub or a power bank to provide the 5v required by the phaser via USB. (I suppose an alternate external source for 5V could be from the DB9 player 1 port I've linked to my PXLmod board - though that adapter idea looks like it'll become really messy!)

Hence, I'm looking more into external options such as USB instead. Is there a safer way to get external power from the idea I had? Would I need to add any other components if using USB (ie for protection or anything)? If I make my own adapter, I'm not keen on using the mono adapter idea from Terence Chan's youtube video, so I assume there's no need to use a voltage regulator (as I'd consider using an unmodified 5v from USB, rather than converting 9v down to 5v for the adapter idea)

.
.

As for rarity of the Master Link cable, I'll agree with Segasonicfan as I had to get mine imported from USA, I don't think they're readily available in UK. So I'm also hesitant to mod that cable internally (plus I don't know if doing so would break compatibility with other controllers and peripherals or cause them damage)

.
.


>> I just want to confirm however that you're using rgb out through the vga port, then on to SCART, not actual VGA output right? >>


Yes @asdfqwer426, I'm using RGB via the vga port. Or at least that's what it sounds like on the product description of my cable from videogameperfection which says the following:

"A quality, shielded and grounded RGB SCART cable for use with the McWill Game Gear LCD and RGB out mod kits.

Fully compatible with 15khz CRTs and upscalers. Can be used with most SCART equipped HDTVs too. Carries both audio and video.

Note – Does not support 31khz modes"
20210402_184151.jpg (2.32 MB)
My extra gamegear ports
20210402_184151.jpg

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Post Posted: Fri Apr 02, 2021 8:43 pm
Naliboi, it sounds like our game gears are quite similar!

I too am using the PXLmod controller adapter in mine and ran into the same issues you have, however I managed to find room to cram in the second port since my video out is located elsewhere. You are correct that the second player side just ties into the expansion port pins, however you cannot tie the TH line used for light phaser into this controller port because the PXLmod adapter uses the TH line itself to get compatibility for genesis controllers and the start button. I tried wiring it a few different ways myself and I either had to lose start button use on the second controller, or lose light phaser support.

I decided to get around this issue by using the master link adapter just like you, but since I have that second port I didn't really need the master link adapter for regular controller use. it will just be for my phaser (and maybe paddle), so I didn't mind altering the cable. I'm also in the states, so ordering another (as long as they're available) isn't too bad. I honestly thought about just adding the link port plug to the phaser cable as I don't actually have a master system to use it on - only the game gear.

That said, if you have a first controller port installed you already have a line to the 5v signal. maybe you could use the same idea you have but power it through a DB9 plug plugged into the controller port? it would be a bit more work but if you really wanted to use a controller and the phaser you could maybe use something like a controller extension cable and just tie into the 5v wire on that? if that makes sense...

By the way, nice job on those flush ports, they look great!
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Revised adapter idea - 5V from PXLmod DB9 player1 port instead.
Post Posted: Sat Apr 03, 2021 3:24 pm
Quote
By the way, nice job on those flush ports, they look great!


Thanks! Also realised exactly who you were after your reddit comment and wanted to say exactly the same! Low-key feeling starstruck getting advice from people on this forum that have made some incredible projects and amazing developments!

Quote
That said, if you have a first controller port installed you already have a line to the 5v signal. maybe you could use the same idea you have but power it through a DB9 plug plugged into the controller port?


Yes, that's an idea I ran across, but previously wasn't thinking of pursuing.

Quote
(I suppose an alternate external source for 5V could be from the DB9 player 1 port I've linked to my PXLmod board - though that adapter idea looks like it'll become really messy!)


I gave it a little more thought and made another diagram for a db9 powered variant I may produce in the future (see below). It should work to give 5v to the master link via my PXLmod Player 1 port (whilst maintaining PXLmod player 1 function for simultaneous use if needed). If I was to make this cable, is there any need to route Gnd across both DIY cable modules? (or would just the 5v lead suffice?).

I'd also ideally want to make a tidy enclosure for each cable module, and maybe even make the breakaway 5v (and Gnd?) lead detachable.
PXLmod DB9 lightgun adapter_210403_154856_2.jpg (326.79 KB)
5v to supply master gear via PXLmod - diagram
PXLmod DB9 lightgun adapter_210403_154856_2.jpg

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USB power for P2 lightgun over Master Gear cable works!!!!
Post Posted: Sat Apr 03, 2021 11:18 pm
I went with the USB method of externally powering my lightgun using the DIY adapter idea I posted earlier.

Works beautifully! I've only got the p2 hacked Gangster Town loaded for now, but I'm still more than happy. Thanks so much for the help, discoveries and resources on this forum. You guys are awesome!

This doesn't work using my power bank as it automatically keeps cutting off power to my cable, but I can live with that.

As per asdfqwer426's suggestion, I'm going to try making another adapter powered via my GameGear's PXLmod DB9 port at a later time (I'm still not 100% keen on modifying my Master Gear link cable). This should hopefully negate the need to have an external source of 5v (as it technically comes from my own GG's modified port). This should also fall slightly more in line with SegaSonicFan's suggestion of sourcing 5v within the system (but I understand its not the most elegant)


Video demonstrating

https://www.reddit.com/r/game_gear/comments/mjjmwh/master_system_lightgun_games_...
20210404_001739.jpg (992.78 KB)
20210404_001739.jpg

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