Questions tagged [nintendo]

For questions about the different versions and products released by Nintendo

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105
votes
5answers
24k views

How can tilting a N64 cartridge cause such subtle glitches?

When the N64 cartridge is tilted in Super Mario 64, it reliably produces glitches such as this. Mario's limbs disappear, he rotates 90° and sinks into the floor, and the music gets messed up (usually ...
58
votes
8answers
14k views

Could you reverse engineer silicon just by looking at it?

I was interested in a recent interview of Masayuki Uemura, one of the engineers who designed the Nintendo Famicom in the early 80s. During initial design phase of the Famicom, one of the first things ...
50
votes
3answers
12k views

What was Nintendo's Software Development Environment for NES Games?

(This question was inspired by my previous question What kind of software was used to develop Nintendo 64 titles?) The NES used a modified 6502 processor and most games were written in Assembly. ...
40
votes
2answers
10k views

Why does the original Donkey Kong update the screen in a curtain closing pattern?

For those of you who don't know, Billy Mitchell, the former Donkey Kong world record champion was caught cheating due to differences between the original Donkey Kong format, and MAME. In other words, ...
40
votes
1answer
6k views

How did Super Mario Bros. 3 create this tunnel vision effect?

In a certain section of World 8's map, the screen is black except for a small circle surrounding Mario (as seen below during this speedrun). After doing a little research, I discovered that the game'...
33
votes
3answers
4k views

Reconditioning and cleaning old Nintendo (and other) game cartridges

I used to blow the dust out of the cartridges but I heard that can actually damage the cartridge or the system itself. I am looking for the proper way to clean old Nintendo game cartridges (such as ...
31
votes
9answers
10k views

NES cartridge ROM emulation with Arduino or Pi?

I'm looking to buy or make an NES cartridge that can be controlled by a microcontroller or small computer like the Raspberry Pi. I don't want to gut an NES cart and put an NES emulator inside it (as ...
31
votes
2answers
36k views

GameBoy Color games do not save any more

I have a Nintendo GameBoy Color with some games that support saving your game status and also have a real-time clock, like Pokémon Red and Pokémon Silver. But recently the game does not save any more,...
29
votes
1answer
12k views

Why is a BIOS dump not required to emulate Nintendo 64 games in most modern emulators?

In order to emulate some home consoles (Playstation 1/2, Sega Saturn/CD/32x, etc.) a dump of the system's BIOS is required to emulate the console. Out of the Nintendo 64 emulators I have found online,...
28
votes
2answers
4k views

How does the NES Light Gun work?

Modern motion detection video game systems (Wii/Wii U, Xbox Kinect, PS Move, etc.) need sensors to read for motion and user input. However, when you play Duck Hunt (and some other games) on the NES, ...
23
votes
3answers
4k views

Main board of the original Game & Watch (Ball)

The Game and Watch was a series of single-title games consoles created by Nintendo from 1980 until 1991. Each machine contained a custom LCD screen (containing images related to the software), some ...
21
votes
1answer
3k views

How is memory allocated in Super Mario World?

Super Mario World (SMW) is known to have several bugs relating to re-use of memory for multiple purposes. For example some memory items are used for more than one type of item, and the designers are ...
20
votes
2answers
5k views

Why didn't SNES Doom use mode 7?

Doom was ported to the Super Nintendo using a Super FX 2 chip on the cartridge. It has most of the features of the full game, though with a few omissions, such as absence of sound propagation, ...
19
votes
1answer
4k views

What kind of software was used to develop Nintendo 64 titles?

There seems to be a lot of discussion online about the development hardware used to create Nintendo 64 titles: SGI Indy "pizza box" workstations, SGI's custom Ultra 64 development boards (aka "...
18
votes
2answers
18k views

What are the differences between the Japanese Famicom and American NES?

In Japan, Nintendo's first home console was sold as the Family Computer (Famicom), while in the US it was later sold as the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Other than the region lock out for ...
18
votes
2answers
7k views

How does one bypass the region lock on Japanese Super Famicom?

I recently bought a Super Famicom on my trip to Japan. However, the console is region locked so you can't play American SNES games. It seems to be that the plastic cartridge doesn't fit in the console ...
18
votes
1answer
4k views

How Did the 10NES lockout chip work?

One of the differences between the Japanese Famicom and the NES released outside of Japan is that the NES shipped with a lockout chip which prevented bootleg and imported games from working on the ...
17
votes
6answers
5k views

Can removing a cartridge from an NES (or any other cartridge-based game system) damage the hardware or software?

On some cartridge-based video game systems (NES, Game Boy Color, etc.) it is possible to remove the cartridge while the game system is still powered on. What kind of damage can this behavior do to ...
17
votes
1answer
1k views

Does anyone know the specific differences between the NES-001 (NTSC) motherboard revisions?

On each Motherboard of an NES-001 (NTSC) there is a code: NES-CPU-xx These range from 04 to 11 (I think) I would like to know if these are all of the revisions of the NES and what major differences ...
16
votes
4answers
6k views

Are NES turbo buttons internal to the controller?

As you may know, the classic NES controller was not the only NES controller that Nintedo released with the NES. These included the NES advantage, the NES Max, and the Dogbone. All of these new ...
16
votes
5answers
4k views

Was Family BASIC for the NES/Famicom powerful enough to create full games and applications?

"Family BASIC or Famicom BASIC is the consumer product for programming Nintendo's Family Computer video game console of Japan." wikipedia I can't seem to find much info about Family BASIC ...
14
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it possible to play Famicom games on the NES and utilize the extra sound channels?

I've seen there are adapters to convert Japanese Famicom games to work on the NES. You may have to remove the lockout chip, I can't remember. Anyway, many Famicom games included extra sound hardware ...
13
votes
2answers
4k views

Did Nintendo change its mind about 68000 SNES?

Compared to its main rival from Sega, the Super Nintendo has a weaker CPU but a more powerful graphics chip. According to http://web.archive.org/web/20080505070423/http://www.eidolons-inn.net/tiki-...
13
votes
1answer
3k views

What is this unused memory range in the Game Boy's memory map?

Here is a basic memory map of the Game Boy's 16bit address bus: 0000-3FFF 16KB ROM Bank 00 (in cartridge, fixed at bank 00) 4000-7FFF 16KB ROM Bank 01..NN (in cartridge, switchable bank number) 8000-...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I rejuvenate Game Boy contacts? [duplicate]

I've got an old Nintendo Game Boy, with a number of games for it. The problem is that most of these games don't load any more, and I suspect that's an issue with the contacts either in the unit, or in ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Did all NES "Black Box" games come in carts with five screws?

When the NES was released, there were a list of original titles from Nintendo such as Duck Hunt, Super Mario Bros. and Metroid. These titles came in a distinctive box that was mostly black. Plus, the ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

In Tetris on Game Boy, does the speed increase depend on time or on the number of points?

I always start at level 9, game mode A. At some point, whether it's based on time or the number of points, the blocks start falling so fast that the "down button" feature loses all meaning; ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is the N64 incapable of 2D graphics?

So as many fans are aware, the N64 era was a jump for many games into the third dimension. Games like Mario and Zelda were impacted in a positive way. Others... not so much. While it may seem odd that ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Were there any other peripherals that used the Nintendo 64's Memory Expansion Bay besides the Expansion Pak?

The Nintendo 64 shipped with a Memory Expansion Bay which contained a Jumper Pack. Some games such as Donkey Kong 64 and The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask required additional RAM to run, and shipped ...
11
votes
2answers
7k views

What did the Supercard "patch" program actually do to GBA and NDS ROMs to make them playable?

The Supercard is a flash cart for the Game Boy advance which can play ROMs and other files off of assorted flash memory. I recently found my Supercard SD and Superkey for NDS, which acts as a ...
11
votes
1answer
760 views

Did Nintendo pay WDC for their use of the 65816 core?

When Nintendo used the 6502 core in the NES (as part of the Ricoh 2A03/2A07 microprocessor and sound generator), they circumvented the 6502's patent protection by disabling the BCD arithmetic. As a ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

What ended the Sony console partnerships with Sega and Nintendo?

Sega and Nintendo were the dominant players in the console market at the end of the 1980s and into the 90s. By early in the next decade, Sony shipped the PlayStation 2, leading Sega to exit the ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Why are the PPU registers on the NES mirrored?

[Please see answers to this related question as well] The NES Picture Processing Unit has eight memory-mapped registers to the CPU in registers $2000 to $2007. The are incompletely decoded, so they ...
9
votes
2answers
3k views

Were any unlicensed games released for the Nintendo 64?

There haven't been many unlicensed games released for Nintendo consoles, partly due to the fact that Nintendo has locked down their development hardware and software. The most famous of Nintendo's ...
9
votes
2answers
484 views

Can 6502 programs be transliterated to the SPC700?

The SPC700's instruction set is derived from the 6502's, but moves the instructions around and adds a few. But is it fully backwards compatible? Assuming that the program fully separates data and ...
9
votes
1answer
321 views

Was the Japanese Super Mario Bros. 2 ever released in Europe?

The well-known story goes like this: When Nintendo had made Super Mario Bros. 2 in Japan, they for whatever reason decided to not release that game in the West. Instead, they reskinned an existing, ...
9
votes
1answer
177 views

Is there way to save the save state?

I found my Game Boy Advance in a box a few days ago, and I'm already playing good old Mario games. The problem is that I usually don't have time to finish the whole level at the same time (or I might ...
8
votes
2answers
5k views

What was the point of the label on the bottom of the NES? [closed]

The original NES has a label printed onto it that the device would not "cause harmful interference". Why would they write that? Did people think the NES might be dangerous? Is this some kind of legal ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Can I use a UK power adapter in NTSC NES

I have an old US (NTSC) NES system which we found in the garage. Sadly the power supply is missing. As I now live in the UK, I was wondering if it is possible to use a UK NES power supply with it. ...
8
votes
2answers
563 views

NES/Famicom CPU address range allowable for cartridges

The postulated address range for CPU ROM (so-called "PRG-ROM") in cartridges is $8000..$FFFF, that is pre-decoded in NES/Famicom and the chipselect is fed to the cartridge. However, it is quite ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I play Nintendo 64DD Games with sixtyforce (on Mac)?

64DD.org has some game dumps and information on how to play 64DD games in MAME or Project64. Is there any way to play 64DD dumps on a Mac using sixtyforce (my version is registered)? I was thinking ...
7
votes
1answer
702 views

Did any SNES games use the fast ROM?

According to the transcript at https://fabiensanglard.net/another_world_polygons_SNES/ ... I could get the software running again to run at about 30 frames per second if of course I'm using a fast ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the Famicom "Pulse Line" of games? How many games are part of this line?

(This question was inspired by Did all NES "Black Box" games come in carts with five screws?) I've heard of the Famicom "Pulse Line" of games released in Japan shortly after the launch of ...
6
votes
3answers
689 views

Was there anything about the "power of the NES" that made Super Mario Bros. have "realistic physics"?

If you look at older platformers, and even many later ones for other platforms and even the NES, there is typically no "momentum" and "realistic" physics for the main character ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Is the NES controller port identical to the port on a Wii remote?

I was recently playing on a friend's NES Classic, and noticed that the controller ports look similar to the ones on a Wii remote (where you can plug in the Numchuck or Class Controller). Keep in mind ...
6
votes
2answers
689 views

Do the cartridges lose your saved games without batteries?

I was watching a channel about living in China. And the host present a Jacky Chan Nintendo Fake. System looks like a Famicom. But when show the cartridge Video, looks they need batteries. Then it ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Dumping Nintendo 64 cartridges without a backup device

I've seen various posts online about Nintendo cartridge dumping. Two popular posts which come to mind are Thijs Alkemade's Game Boy cartridge dumping on a Raspberry Pi series and NintendoPlayer's ...
6
votes
1answer
372 views

Was the character in the Game & Watch series supposed to be his own unique character?

For those of you who don't know, the Game & Watch handhelds were a series of LCD handhelds released prior to the Gameboy that featured one (and sometimes two) player games. Some of these games (...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

How do N64 controller deadzones work?

For those of you who don't know, dead zones are a (usually) intentional effect with most controllers' analog sticks, where if the amount that it's being moved is too small, the controller doesn't ...
6
votes
1answer
550 views

Can the Nintendo 64 run code directly from ROM?

I've read that the usual way to execute code on the N64 is to use DMA to copy it from ROM into RAM, and then run from RAM. However, it seems that the contents of the ROM are directly visible to the ...