Author Topic: Certain Games not working  (Read 738 times)

Offline speedyjohnny

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Certain Games not working
« on: 07/Jan/2019 12:46:07 AM »
Hello all,

I've backed up nearly my entire catalogue of games. Three of my games however are not working:

Centurion, Defender of Rome (Sega Genesis)

Zaxxon 3D (Sega Master System)

Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memory (Game Boy Advance)

I seem to be getting a good ROM file with Centurion, but it is not loading in my Fusion emulator.

For Zaxxon 3D I am not getting a proper ROM file. I know it can't be due to the fact that it is a 3D game because my other 3D games (Space Harrier 3D and Missile Defence 3D) work just fine.

And for Kingdom Hearts, I get a ROM file that is 0kb in size.

Any suggestions? Thank you.
« Last Edit: 07/Jan/2019 12:50:29 AM by speedyjohnny »

Offline ssokolow

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Re: Certain Games not working
« Reply #1 on: 07/Jan/2019 01:29:23 AM »
The first thing I do in a situation like this is to soak cotton swabs in the purest alcohol I have and clean the contacts on the cartridge until the swab comes away clean.

It should say something like denatured alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, or rubbing alcohol and the ingredients should not contain anything beyond some form of alcohol, aqua (water), and a bittering/denaturing agent like denatonium benzoate. (Be wary of "rubbing compound", which will often list stuff you don't want, like camphor, in the ingredients.)

If you're having trouble finding any of those at your local pharmacy or dollar store or equivalent, and you're of age to buy liquor, you can also use the stuff intended for adding alcohol content to mixed drinks, which is known variously as "rectified spirit", "neutral spirit" or "grain alcohol". In that case, try to find the stuff that's around 95% alcohol by volume (190 proof. Alcohol purer than this will actually pull moisture from the air to reach that balance).

I'm told there are also automotive products which are just denatured alcohol, but I can't remember which ones they are.

Whatever alcohol you use, I'd never settle for anything less than 70% alcohol / 30% water by volume and the higher the concentration the better.

Next, check dat-o-matic. It'll tell you the size and MD5/SHA1/etc. hashes for a good dump, so you can tell whether it's a problem with your dump or a problem with your emulator.

For all of them, you can try looking up the correct size on dat-o-matic and then setting the "force system" and "force size" options in case it's the Retrode's detection routines that are messing up.

I just recently suggested that to someone who was having problems with an unlicensed Genesis cart and that solved the problem.

For Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, there are two things that come to mind:

1. GBA ROM headers don't specify the ROM size, so the Retrode has to guess. It could be you need to set the "force size" option to whatever dat-o-matic tells you, then truncate the file to get rid of garbage bytes at the end if it's between two sizes the Retrode will dump and you had to round up.

2. There are a lot of counterfeit GBA carts out there and they don't generally play nicely with the Retrode. If you've got a tri-wing screwdriver, the easiest way to identify them is usually to open them up and discover a battery in something that dat-o-matic doesn't list as using battery-backed SRAM. (And, in such a case, the game might be gone. Counterfeit GBA carts often store the game itself in the same battery-backed SRAM as the save data in order to cut costs.)

Here's a thread (with photos) on how to identify fake GBA carts. (Note that, though there's no corresponding photo, one reply points out that some fakes say AGB-004 on the back, which is a charger, not AGB-002, which is a GBA cartridge shell.)

I have no specific experience with SMS games, so I can't offer anything beyond the general advice for Zaxxon 3D.

P.S. To complete the set, here are my links for identifying fake GB/GBC, and fake SNES cartridges. (Sorry that some of the pics on the latter one are gone. The explanations of what they were showing should still be helpful though.)
« Last Edit: 07/Jan/2019 01:52:22 AM by ssokolow »

Offline MasterOfPuppets

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Re: Certain Games not working
« Reply #2 on: 07/Jan/2019 02:10:58 AM »
I just tried Kingdom Hearts and it also came up as a 0kb file. I forced it to 32MB and the checksum matched DAT-o-MATIC. So you could use that as a workaround until someone can hopefully fix it.

Offline speedyjohnny

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Re: Certain Games not working
« Reply #3 on: 19/Jan/2019 06:30:28 PM »
I just looked up DAT-o-MATIC on the internet. It's the first time I heard of it, actually.

Has anyone made a forum post to explain how to use it?

Offline MasterOfPuppets

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Re: Certain Games not working
« Reply #4 on: 20/Jan/2019 04:08:25 PM »
Select a system from the drop down, click search, type the game name and press enter, then compare your checksum to theirs.

Offline speedyjohnny

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Re: Certain Games not working
« Reply #5 on: 22/Jan/2019 06:58:10 AM »
I followed your instructions. I found this:

Type:    Trusted Dump
   Media Serial (1):    

AGB-B8CP-EUR

   Region:    Unknown
   Date:    2008-03-17
   Dumper:    hidden
   Affiliation:    No-Intro
   Datter:    root
   Format:    Default
   File:    
1964 - Kingdom Hearts - Chain of Memories (Europe) (En,Fr,De,Es,It).gba
     Size:    33554432
     CRC32:    772D97FB  [selected]
     MD5:    D369F791D86A969778D2C3A5278D544C
     SHA-1:    8DB73586CDB11B3795907EDEBF43228DBCD3E6B2
     Serial:    -


Which information would be the checksum? And once I verify that they do not match, how can do I fix the ROM?

Offline MasterOfPuppets

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Re: Certain Games not working
« Reply #6 on: 23/Jan/2019 12:53:30 AM »
The CRC32, MD5, SHA-1 listed are all checksums. Just have the retrode force the ROM size to be 32MB.