Pseudo Saturn Kai official thread

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cafe-alpha

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Sorry for the delay.

Yeah, i wouldn't worry about trying to fix this single issue mate. I should have been a little bit more specific when i made that random comment. I don't know where i got this wildcat game pad from but it most likely came bundled with a second hand Saturn console i picked up somewhere in the last two decades.

I don't see any Saturns around these days in second hand shops anymore like i used too. If i do, i get it straight away! So don't worry my dear friend, i have no shortage of legit Saturn controllers here, believe me. What i was trying to say with my "off the cuff comment" is, Pseudo Saturn Kia is just totally awesome!! and, realistically, if the only problem im having so far is a crappy third party controller causing one issue, then you are doing very very well overall! =)
Ah, thank you, because supporting other projects is cool from time to time but becomes annoying after a certain extent. Especially when that's me doing software support for free vs hardware maker making cash from that.

There is nothing wrong with you being totally obsessed with getting you're Pseudo Saturn Kai "baby" just right as a legacy for humanity in general, or for us old school Saturn fans who truly appreciate what you and your dedicated team have done, i mean, i personally would give you a big man hug (closed fists-hold for 2.5 seconds-release) if i ever met you in person but please...PLEASE remember to stop and take a darn breath at least two days a week and play some Saturn games you love, i don't care which ones, just enjoy them in the "here and now" because life is short my man!!
I have not a lot a free time for hobbies, and prefer to dedicate it in developing new projects rather than playing. I'm actually not a good player so prefer to contribute in my specialty field (software/hardware development) and make people playing instead of me :)

More personally, Pseudo Saturn project became public was the moment I was told to have cancer and 50-60% survival chances at 5 years. I thought it would be good to contribute to the project (so at least something would remain from me) and timidly started to add a proper flasher utility which I coded and tested when I still was at the hospital ^^ After that, I added some new features to Pseudo Saturn itself, such as cheat codes, in-game USB connectivity, extended memory cartridge support, etc. All of that started 5 years ago and was good recreation during theses hard times for me :) For all theses reasons maybe I am a bot over-protective toward Pseudo Saturn Kai project but really don't want it to be spoiled.

In a lot of ways you are just like me and my DJ mix obsession. Im not a DJ pro but i seem to spend a lot of time goofing around making custom loops to mix up tunes with and all for what? I don't get paid for it? ...only other DJ's appreciate my work, the general public can not tell the difference, but i still do it anyway! When i was doing the odd DJ job years ago for Weddings and 21st party's, i used two Saturns along side my Technics SL 1200mk2 turntables to play CDs!! Got a pic of my old set up somewhere i will have to find for you now =O


Recently ive started to archive my work on youtube spanning 30 years. I hope this is not considered spam here because some sites it is, and i don't know what music your into but i've uploaded almost all of my mixes i made in my party years for anyone's ears to listen if they have the time @JDVHS



..and please don't click on my chainsaw ring tone...going by stats alone this will be my most popular upload before too long! lols
For being the most active GunGriffon player, sharing your other hobbies here shouldn't be considered as spam IMHO :)


Hello all, new to this forum :)


Does anyone know if the red all in one pseudo cartridges work with a model 1 Japanese Saturn? I’ve read a couple of comments saying that it doesn’t.
This is not a support thread for red cartridges, nor Action Replay cartridges, nor even any kind of retro gaming device in general, so if you want more accurate information please contact the manufacturer or seller of the cartridge you're interested in.

Regarding Pseudo Saturn Kai, it doesn't works correctly on some (not all) hardware revisions of grey (model 1) Japanese Saturns. This problem concerns few games (and unfortunately includes Panzer Dragoon Saga) that won't boot or freeze at a given time during playing. Except that, all the other games should work with similar compatibility as on other Saturn hardware revisions.
Approximate list of unsupported games can be found in "Games Requiring Patching" section of Pseudo Saturn Kai readme : https://ppcenter.webou.net/pskai/readme.txt

Please note however that when using old 0.832 version of Pseudo Saturn then it won't load any game (and in that case CD swap trick is required to install a more recent firmware) so please be sure that cartridge comes with latest version of Pseudo Saturn Kai pre-installed.


Thank you very much, i was having the same problem,my saturn only run original games after i followed his tip to slightly increase the laser intensity worked perfect ^^

You're welcome and thank you for fixing this common problem by yourself :)
(As I don't know if too generous tuning of that potentiometer would damage the laser or not, please tune it just enough to play CD-Rs rather than setting it to maximum value. As you "slightly increased" it, everything should be alright on your side, but I prefer to indicate that anyway for other users wanting to try this tweak on their CD drives)



Yello! I am new to Saturn M1 and Pseudo!



What's this! But on the DL page new version says good for all cartridge?


Any hope of make PAL run 60hz in the future?


EDIT: Also hope for a list for those titles that need, patch?

Game loader and cheat codes should work fine on any kind of cartridge providing 256 KB boot flash ROM = Action Replay, Gameshark, red cart etc.
Games requiring Pseudo patching are listed in Pseudo Saturn Kai readme and generally speaking, it's a good practice to take a look on Pseudo Saturn Kai compatibility page before copying game(s) to CD-R. Games not listed there should basically work without the need of patching or any kind of other tweaks.
- Pseudo Saturn Kai readme : https://ppcenter.webou.net/pskai/readme.txt
- Pseudo Saturn Kai compatibility list : PPCenter :: Pseudo Saturn Kai Compatibility List

PS : don't PM me with the same question. This won't make me answering faster ...
 

cafe-alpha

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I'm tolerant with PMs (but prefer this thread as it may help other users), but writing on both PM and here won't change anything :)
Good luck with the firmware installation and happy playing !
 

_JackDanielS_

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Hi Guys
I'm getting in touch for a question. I use saturn normally and I only use Pseudo for backup CDs, free region and ram cartridge option. I recently bought an Action replay Plus ems with Pesudo installed (Pseudo Saturn Kai LITE 6.074). Is there a big difference from current versions? Since I don't use SD card or Wireless Control?
Thanks for the Help
 

cafe-alpha

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Regarding lite version, there are two major enhancements between Pseudo Saturn Kai v6.074 and latest (v6.314) release :

- Simplified game loader : v6.074 was prompting user to select which loader to use in order to play a game. Default loader is OK for a majority of games but second one is mandatory for the remaining ones : typical example is Panzer Dragoon Saga, which wasn't supported on early Pseudo Saturn version.
On latest version, appropriate loader is automatically selected so that unexpected loading problems are reduced.

- Cheat codes support : cheat codes functionality is available and more user-friendly than on Action Replay lagacy firmares. Among others, it's not needed to manually select game from cheat codes list, cheats selection menu is (IMO) a bit better etc.
Here is an example with Radiant Silvergun and old Pseudo Saturn Kai beta version :

Additionally there's also builtin support for Rhea/Phoebe disc image selection, which is recommended if you're using one of theses ODEs but not of any use if you are using good old optical drive.
 

_JackDanielS_

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Thank you so much for the prompt, helpful and very thoughtful response.
Sorry to be so noob, of course the topic is about Pseudo Kai, but it was a doubt, the cheats are loaded by Pseudo through Action Replay or are run directly by the program?
Is it possible to backup saves on the * action replay * cartridge with pseudo installed?
I read about it, and some places mention that the cartridge loses this function with Pseudo installed

Again thanks in advance for the help;)



Regarding lite version, there are two major enhancements between Pseudo Saturn Kai v6.074 and latest (v6.314) release :

- Simplified game loader : v6.074 was prompting user to select which loader to use in order to play a game. Default loader is OK for a majority of games but second one is mandatory for the remaining ones : typical example is Panzer Dragoon Saga, which wasn't supported on early Pseudo Saturn version.
On latest version, appropriate loader is automatically selected so that unexpected loading problems are reduced.

- Cheat codes support : cheat codes functionality is available and more user-friendly than on Action Replay lagacy firmares. Among others, it's not needed to manually select game from cheat codes list, cheats selection menu is (IMO) a bit better etc.
Here is an example with Radiant Silvergun and old Pseudo Saturn Kai beta version :

Additionally there's also builtin support for Rhea/Phoebe disc image selection, which is recommended if you're using one of theses ODEs but not of any use if you are using good old optical drive.
 

Solitario

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Magic Knight Rayearth is not working with the red all-in-one cartridge, after fmv the game gets a black screen ... does this red cartridge have any deficiencies or would it be the game recording?
 
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Ponut

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Magic Knight Rayearth is not working with the red all-in-one cartridge, after fmv the game gets a black screen ... does this red cartridge have any deficiencies or would it be the game recording?
This is a CD-level issue, not an issue with PS Kai.
Well, I think it is. I also had a lot of trouble getting Magic Knight Rayearth to play on a burned CD.
Ah, another thing: ISO source can make a difference, too.
I had to switch CD vendors and patch the CD to get it to play properly.
You do need to patch the CD for that game I think. The PSKai CD patcher is usually not required, but it is available here PPCenter :: Pseudo Saturn Kai
 

privateye

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I've tested a burned unpatched copy of Magic Knight Rayearth with Pseudo Saturn Kai Lite v6.314 installed on an Action Replay, and it works just fine as indicated in the compatibility list; I was able to play a bit of the game after watching the opening FMV. However, there have been reports of the red all-in-one cart (with PSK v6.314 installed) being incompatible with Magic Knight Rayearth and a few other games:

[Reddit] Problems with Magic Knight Rayearth and Resident Evil with the latest Pseudo Saturn Kai Lite




EDIT: Even though it works fine on a flashed Action Replay, maybe it needs patching to get it working with the red all-in-one cart? But @Tappy79 reported that even an original copy of Magic Knight Rayearth doesn't work with the red all-in-one cart, so I'm sceptical that this will solve the issue.
 
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Solitario

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I recorded the Magic Knight Rayearth UJ UNDUB version that I found on Intenet and it works perfectly with all-in-one red cartridge with PSK v6.314IMG_20191114_131249.jpgIMG_20191114_131258.jpgIMG_20191114_131700.jpg
 

Solitario

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Guys I'm out of luck, after this part of the game he gets a black screen ..... sad
IMG_20191114_213748.jpg
 

cafe-alpha

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Sorry to be so noob, of course the topic is about Pseudo Kai, but it was a doubt, the cheats are loaded by Pseudo through Action Replay or are run directly by the program?
No problem, this is the right place to ask about Pseudo Saturn Kai :)
Cartridge is actually not necessary to run cheat codes : Pseudo Saturn Kai stores codes informations into RAM unused by game, tweak a bit the game to periodically upate cheat codes and finally boot the game.


Is it possible to backup saves on the * action replay * cartridge with pseudo installed?

I read about it, and some places mention that the cartridge loses this function with Pseudo installed
It's not possible : this feature is available on Action Replay stock firmware but as you could read, it not implemented in Pseudo Saturn Kai.
Reason is that using cartridge flash ROM to frequently erase/write data is not a good practise and may brick the cartridge sooner or later. That's especially the case with flash ROM chips used in Action Replay and "all-in-one" carts : thoses chips are officially no longer manufactured and consequently quality is questionable.
Additionally, this feature have limitations because it uses it uses only half of the cartridge flash ROM and also because it doesn't supports in-game cartridge access (saves can only be copied from the menu embedded into Action Replay firmware) which had the consequence of making some games using large save data (typically RPGs) being supported with several limitations such as only one save slot available at once, or not being allowed to save game progress etc.

As I was stubborn in not implementing this "as in Action Replay including limitations" save memory feature into Pseudo Saturn Kai, cartridge cloners reacted and added memory chip dedicated to store save data. This is a safer way of doing because even if that chip is damaged, Pseudo Saturn Kai still boots and at least game can be loaded.
It's funny to notice that all the chips used in "all-in-one" cart are old things that were already available at the beginning of Action Replay history : for around two decades, EMS was scrimping the cost of a couple of chips just because that "store save data on boot flash ROM" feature was a (flawed) standard.
I don't know exactly was triggered the development of this "all-in-one" cart, but I believe that my Pseudo Saturn Kai development guidelines contributed to a better standard for Action Replay-ish cartridges :)


TL;DR : not all Action Replay-ish carts are equal in term of features, so if you are about purchasing a Saturn cartridge please be sure to select one that matches your needs and your budget :
- Gameshark and cheap clones : doesn't support any game requiring cartridge
- Action Replay : same as above, plus support of games requiring 1MB/4MB expansion RAM
List of games requiring expansion RAM is available on satakore : List of Sega Saturn games that require an external cartridge - Satakore.com
- "all-in-one" cart : same as above, plus in-game availability of cartridge backup memory
I don't know any page extensively listing games requiring cartridge backup memory, but this basically concerns RPGs, racing games (racing ghost data takes a lot of space) and some few particular games such as Dezaemon 2.


@Solitario : Support of Magic Knight Rayearth already caused problems in previous page of this thread. But as this game was reported being compatible (compatibility page available here : PPCenter :: Pseudo Saturn Kai Compatibility List ), I don't consider Pseudo Saturn Kai being a problem.
Please give another try with different brand of CD-Rs from previous time. And if you have a screwdriver, you may also want to tune the potentiometer at the rear side of CD-ROM unit : it sometimes makes CD-Rs magically being compatible :)
 

_JackDanielS_

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Thanks for the reply...man...you are very kind...continue with the great work. ;)


No problem, this is the right place to ask about Pseudo Saturn Kai :)
Cartridge is actually not necessary to run cheat codes : Pseudo Saturn Kai stores codes informations into RAM unused by game, tweak a bit the game to periodically upate cheat codes and finally boot the game.




It's not possible : this feature is available on Action Replay stock firmware but as you could read, it not implemented in Pseudo Saturn Kai.
Reason is that using cartridge flash ROM to frequently erase/write data is not a good practise and may brick the cartridge sooner or later. That's especially the case with flash ROM chips used in Action Replay and "all-in-one" carts : thoses chips are officially no longer manufactured and consequently quality is questionable.
Additionally, this feature have limitations because it uses it uses only half of the cartridge flash ROM and also because it doesn't supports in-game cartridge access (saves can only be copied from the menu embedded into Action Replay firmware) which had the consequence of making some games using large save data (typically RPGs) being supported with several limitations such as only one save slot available at once, or not being allowed to save game progress etc.

As I was stubborn in not implementing this "as in Action Replay including limitations" save memory feature into Pseudo Saturn Kai, cartridge cloners reacted and added memory chip dedicated to store save data. This is a safer way of doing because even if that chip is damaged, Pseudo Saturn Kai still boots and at least game can be loaded.
It's funny to notice that all the chips used in "all-in-one" cart are old things that were already available at the beginning of Action Replay history : for around two decades, EMS was scrimping the cost of a couple of chips just because that "store save data on boot flash ROM" feature was a (flawed) standard.
I don't know exactly was triggered the development of this "all-in-one" cart, but I believe that my Pseudo Saturn Kai development guidelines contributed to a better standard for Action Replay-ish cartridges :)


TL;DR : not all Action Replay-ish carts are equal in term of features, so if you are about purchasing a Saturn cartridge please be sure to select one that matches your needs and your budget :
- Gameshark and cheap clones : doesn't support any game requiring cartridge
- Action Replay : same as above, plus support of games requiring 1MB/4MB expansion RAM
List of games requiring expansion RAM is available on satakore : List of Sega Saturn games that require an external cartridge - Satakore.com
- "all-in-one" cart : same as above, plus in-game availability of cartridge backup memory
I don't know any page extensively listing games requiring cartridge backup memory, but this basically concerns RPGs, racing games (racing ghost data takes a lot of space) and some few particular games such as Dezaemon 2.


@Solitario : Support of Magic Knight Rayearth already caused problems in previous page of this thread. But as this game was reported being compatible (compatibility page available here : PPCenter :: Pseudo Saturn Kai Compatibility List ), I don't consider Pseudo Saturn Kai being a problem.
Please give another try with different brand of CD-Rs from previous time. And if you have a screwdriver, you may also want to tune the potentiometer at the rear side of CD-ROM unit : it sometimes makes CD-Rs magically being compatible :)
 

Solitario

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The culprit is this red cartridge .... I will use it for now until I buy Satiator., continue with this great project ^^
 

Ponut

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Pretty odd what they must have done with those red carts. I have a brown all-in-one (really, just pseudo saturn, no other feature) from hat is most likely the exact same source.
 

fafling

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I have 2 red all-in-one Pseudo Saturn cartridges : the one with backup RAM (which stopped retaining saves after a few uses) has more CD reading issues than the one without.
 

privateye

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Guys I'm out of luck, after this part of the game he gets a black screen ..... sad
View attachment 4933
I managed to pass this part and enter the Forest of Silence when playing a burned copy with Pseudo Saturn Kai Lite v6.314 installed on an Action Replay, so it definitely seems that the red all-in-one cart causing the problem here.

I have 2 red all-in-one Pseudo Saturn cartridges : the one with backup RAM (which stopped retaining saves after a few uses) has more CD reading issues than the one without.
That's interesting. There have been reports that the all-in-one cart with backup memory is also incompatible with Dragon Force 1 & 2, Policenauts (discs 2 and 3), Torico, and X-Men Children of the Atom. Can you confirm that it is incompatible with these games? And have you found any other incompatible games that are not on this list?

I used to own an all-in-one cartridge for a short while, but I had problems with the backup memory like you did; it got corrupt on more than one occasion and I decided that I simply couldn't trust it. This is what motivated me to buy the excellent Gamer's Cartridge by @cafe-alpha :)
 
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Solitario

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I finished these 3 games using the red cartridge backup function, no corruption happened ^^

mega man 8
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