Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Collection Milestone

Earlier I blogged about reaching 1000 total gaming items, but it was disputed by my friend Paul, as it included stuff belonging to my good lady. Today I have reached the 1000 mark on my own. :)

My new 1000th item was Manic Miner for the Dragon 32

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Donkey Kong 64 Update

I've been playing my way through now for about 5 days, and I've clocked about 16 hours game time. The completion stats tell me I've done 24%, which isn't bad. The game is still holding my interest, but there's a lot, and by that I mean 2 out of 3 words, of swearing at it. It would be even better if the developers had paid a bit of attention to the user side. For example I've been trying to complete the arcade version of DK that's in the game. This gives me a gold banana for the first completion, and the Nintendo coin for the second. Now it's not beyond the realms of possibility that I might fail on my first attempt, so to get to retry it I have to reposition DK on the lever, press they pull button, watch the cut scene of the zoom in to the machine, sit through donkey kong stealing Pauline, and then I can start playing. And if I die in the game I have to sit through it all again. How hard would it have been to include a retry option, so I could do it in seconds, with the push of one button? As I'm a programmer I can tell you - really bloody easy. In the programming language I use in my day job it could have been done in

Msgbox "Retry" "You failed" Question YesNo
If mbResult = mbYes Call DONKEY_ARCADE

2 lines. Gits! So no, I have to sit through 5 mins of crap because a developer insists that I have to watch his cutscene.

You wouldn't necessarily believe it from this post, but I'm really enjoying the game

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Treasure Hunt

Not much yesterday:
World Grand Prix, Master System, £1.99
Alien Resurrection, PS1, £1.50

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tomb Raider: Underworld


I know I promised I wouldn't, but Argh! and Grr! Goddammit! Bunch of useless tossers. I think I've said that before.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Currently Playing: Donkey Kong 64

I've finally gotten around to playing some games again, consequently I've chosen something from my backlog list. Donkey Kong 64 has not stood the test of time very well, the camera is all over the bloody place, needing frequent corrections, and the graphics are about what you'd expect for N64 era 3D, i.e. eye bleeding colours and blurred like it's all out of focus. Game play is actually pretty good, jump around, shoot things, find bananas.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Gaming collection

Today I have reached a total of 1000 items - this doesn't include books, toys or figures, just systems, games and peripherals, and excludes duplicated items.

The Ket Trilogy for the Dragon 32 was my 1000th item

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Treasure Hunt

Did quite well today, 6 games for the PSX, for £1.99 each.

Destruction Derby
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Rogue Spear
Music 2000
Theme Park
Speed Freaks

Monday, December 8, 2008

Dragon 32 PSX interface

Not much else done, but I've cleaned up the box and added some authentic early 80's style labels

Treasure Hunt

Not much today, but I did pick up a couple of Playstation dancing games for the kids.

Dancing Stage Euromix
Superstar Dance Club

for £1.99 each

Hiking This Weekend - Sherwood Forest

We did about 7 miles around Sherwood Forest this weekend. The weather was below freezing when we set out, but that didn't really bother us, we've got all the kit. We took a little under 3 hours, and that included a stop for lunch.

Along the way we took in the Major Oak ...

... and Centre Tree. Would have liked to get to Parliament Oak too, but that would have made the whole walk about 12 miles

Friday, December 5, 2008

Treasure Hunt

Today was quite successful

Headhunter Redemption
Deus Ex Invisible War

£1.99 each

Game Cube
Lost Kingdoms, £2.99

Grand total £10.95

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Dragon PSX Pad

I've managed to get my boards into a project box now, and wire up the analogue on/off switch. This is all built from parts I had lying around, and whilst the box is a bit on the big side it does mean that I can add another board and sockets and have 2 joysticks. Or add an interface for something else.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Cocktail Cabinet Update

I've managed to complete some more of the cabinet over the last couple of days. I've added a nice trim to the inner and outer edges of the top, and fitted a plastic top. The lack of the latter was beginning to worry me as it left the monitor face up and exposed.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

'Doctor Who is a man and should stay that bloody way' says Ga5ket

'Doctor Who should be a woman' say female scientists - Telegraph

Goddammit! Why the bloody hell does this shite keep coming up. Doctor Who is a bloody man. End of bloody story. Now can we get on with running around and saving the universe?

PSX Dragon 32 Joypad

Some time ago I blogged about modding a Dragon 32 controller to take PSX internals so that I can use it on my emulator. I've spent a couple of hours working on it, and this is my progress to date.

Removed the circuit boards from the PSX pad, a Woolworths branded knock off.
Using a Dremmel I cut out the section of the pad that holds the right nubbin.

Removed the potentiometer from the Dragon joystick, and unsoldered the connections to the fire button. This button will directly activate the PSX pad circuit board. No damage to the controller, so I can always return the controller to it's pre-modded state. These things may not have a soul, but I do.

I tidied up the nubbin casing, and glued it into the Dragon joystick case. This will give me a secure mounting point for the actual analog control later.

Sawed the nubbin circuit board in two, one to fit inside the Dragon joystick, the other to be hidden away in a project box. I've got tons of old pc cables lying around, so I cut up an old RS232 cable, and salvaged a com port from my parts bin. I soldered the cable to the joystick end,

and the com port to the main PSX circuit board.

After testing all the connections for continuity I plugged it all together, retested and found that I'd swapped the connections between the plug and the socket, so I had to redo the socket end. Once I'd done that and retested it everything looked ok, so it was time for a test on the emulator.

Bugger me, it all worked! Ok, so it wasn't rocket science, but this is my first project in about 20 years, and I did expect some major problems along the way. I've still to add a proper joystick to the controller instead of the nubbin, but this is how it looks so far