Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Drive

Discussion and listing of Retron 5 cartridge compatibility.
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Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Drive

Postby the_importer » October 19th, 2016, 8:54 am

I bought this game along with many other RPGs. I buy the Japanese versions because they are cheaper and I can just create IPS patches to play them in English. This is the only game that I bought that simply doesn't play. It sees it as an unknown cart regardless of how many times I scrub it with cotton swap + robbing alcool or a cart cleaning stick with a rubber end. It plays just fine in my Genesis (using a GameGenie for cart conversion), but no deal on the RetroN 5.

If I try to start the game anyway, it locks up after the SEGA logo. I know the cart is official, I mean it's complete and everything and the seller is reputable:

Image

Is this game suppose to be compatible in the first place? I know the NA version is according to a fix back in 2014. I am using the latest firmware at the moment.
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Re: Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Dri

Postby R9delta » October 19th, 2016, 11:55 am

There's generally one of four reasons you're having this issue...the cartridge is really a repo and not legitimate (Retron has always had horrid support for repos), the cartridge is defective or damaged enough where the Retron 5 cannot read the complete rom, the emulation is not up to snuff, or the retron 5's pins themselves are damaged.

I would probably eliminate the last 2 possibilities as you claim this is the only Mega Drive/Genesis game that gives you problems, and if it were JUST an emulation issue the Retron 5 would still display the cartridge's name correctly instead of unknown cart...issues wouldn't crop until once you start the game. The jpn version of PSIV is in the Retron 5's database so it should be showing up properly barring other issues. So all in all It's likely one of the first 2 possibilities and I would place my bets on the 2nd (the cartridge being damaged beyond simply cleaning) as a real genesis reads a cartridge differently than a Retron 5 does.

On a Retron 5 the cartridge has to be clean/reliable enough that not a SINGLE byte of data is corrupted when it reads it as the rom in it's entirety is dumped to memory and then it's CRC is matched with the Retron 5's database...on a Genesis this is not the case as data is accessed from the cartridge/rom as it's needed and not needed to be dumped completely to ram first. So on your Genesis you may not notice there is any problems until you run into a part where the damaged data is called upon, or maybe so little is damaged that there's no perceivable problems at all.
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Re: Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Dri

Postby the_importer » October 19th, 2016, 11:27 pm

R9delta wrote:There's generally one of four reasons you're having this issue...the cartridge is really a repo and not legitimate (Retron has always had horrid support for repos), the cartridge is defective or damaged enough where the Retron 5 cannot read the complete rom, the emulation is not up to snuff, or the retron 5's pins themselves are damaged.

I would probably eliminate the last 2 possibilities as you claim this is the only Mega Drive/Genesis game that gives you problems, and if it were JUST an emulation issue the Retron 5 would still display the cartridge's name correctly instead of unknown cart...issues wouldn't crop until once you start the game. The jpn version of PSIV is in the Retron 5's database so it should be showing up properly barring other issues. So all in all It's likely one of the first 2 possibilities and I would place my bets on the 2nd (the cartridge being damaged beyond simply cleaning) as a real genesis reads a cartridge differently than a Retron 5 does.

On a Retron 5 the cartridge has to be clean/reliable enough that not a SINGLE byte of data is corrupted when it reads it as the rom in it's entirety is dumped to memory and then it's CRC is matched with the Retron 5's database...on a Genesis this is not the case as data is accessed from the cartridge/rom as it's needed and not needed to be dumped completely to ram first. So on your Genesis you may not notice there is any problems until you run into a part where the damaged data is called upon, or maybe so little is damaged that there's no perceivable problems at all.


Damage is probably more likely since I opened the game in order to have a final scrubbing using a Soap Pad, which usually makes any non-working game working, so it must be an issue on the board. Guess I'll buy a loose one just to prove this theory.

Thanks for the explanation.
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Re: Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Dri

Postby the_importer » November 14th, 2016, 8:00 pm

R9delta wrote:There's generally one of four reasons you're having this issue...the cartridge is really a repo and not legitimate (Retron has always had horrid support for repos), the cartridge is defective or damaged enough where the Retron 5 cannot read the complete rom, the emulation is not up to snuff, or the retron 5's pins themselves are damaged.

I would probably eliminate the last 2 possibilities as you claim this is the only Mega Drive/Genesis game that gives you problems, and if it were JUST an emulation issue the Retron 5 would still display the cartridge's name correctly instead of unknown cart...issues wouldn't crop until once you start the game. The jpn version of PSIV is in the Retron 5's database so it should be showing up properly barring other issues. So all in all It's likely one of the first 2 possibilities and I would place my bets on the 2nd (the cartridge being damaged beyond simply cleaning) as a real genesis reads a cartridge differently than a Retron 5 does.

On a Retron 5 the cartridge has to be clean/reliable enough that not a SINGLE byte of data is corrupted when it reads it as the rom in it's entirety is dumped to memory and then it's CRC is matched with the Retron 5's database...on a Genesis this is not the case as data is accessed from the cartridge/rom as it's needed and not needed to be dumped completely to ram first. So on your Genesis you may not notice there is any problems until you run into a part where the damaged data is called upon, or maybe so little is damaged that there's no perceivable problems at all.


Hi there,

Just a follow-up on this topic. Today, I received the loose cart of PS4 that I purchased. I cleaned it, tried it and got the exact same issue. I very much doubt that I got 2 defective carts, so that leaves the issue with the RetroN 5 in reading the ROM chip. I know it can run the game itself because I did the old IPS trick where it loads the Japanese Phantasy Star 4 when booting another cart, so the system is just incompatible with the Japanese PS4 cart.
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Re: Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Dri

Postby R9delta » November 14th, 2016, 10:27 pm

Hmm....strange. That sucks, sounds like the R5 just really doesn't like the jpn version of PSIV or there's something up with the pins. I'd probably hit up Hyperkin on this one. Maybe compatibility got botched with PSIV at some point.
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Re: Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Dri

Postby the_importer » November 15th, 2016, 2:10 am

R9delta wrote:Hmm....strange. That sucks, sounds like the R5 just really doesn't like the jpn version of PSIV or there's something up with the pins. I'd probably hit up Hyperkin on this one. Maybe compatibility got botched with PSIV at some point.


Already e-mailed them, let's see if they'll reply.
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Re: Phantasy Star The End of the Millennium for JPN Mega Dri

Postby the_importer » November 15th, 2016, 8:34 pm

Update from Hyperkin
Hello,
I will be sure that the Dev team Work on the issue as soon as they can.

Regards,

Customer Service Representative
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