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greymalkin16
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Attention The Sega CD/Neo-Geo CD FAQ Thread Reply to this Post Post Reply with Quote Edit/Delete Posts Report Post to a Moderator       Go to the top of this page

For those of you who may be experiencing problems with SEGA CD/MEGA CD emulation, here's a quick list of frequently asked questions and answers that we get most commonly here on the message boards.

**DISCLAIMER #1**
The instructions in this FAQ pertain to the Gens emulator, as it is currently the best Sega CD emulator in terms of compatibility, as well as ease of use. The latest version of Gens can be downloaded from their homepage: http://gens.consolemul.com


**DISCLAIMER #2**
This is an FAQ, not a general user's guide. It is meant to answer some of the more common questions that come up in regards to Sega CD emulation. If you are unfamiliar with the basic operation of Gens, or do not know what a BIOS or an ISO is...then read the documentation that comes with packaged with the emulator.


That being said...let's proceed.


Greymalkin's Quasi-Stress-Free Guide to Sega CD Emulation Version 1.2



Why are Sega CD games so big?

Remember that Sega CD games are images ripped from compact discs...compact discs that could hold 650mb of data a piece. That's a lot more information than you can fit on a rom chip. Also, keep in mind that many of these Sega CD games also had a lot of Full Motion Video (as crappy and low-res as it was), as well as 128kbps quality sound.




Is there any way you can make the Sega CD games smaller for downloading?

Unfortunately, the answer to this question is "no". We make sure the games are as small as we can get them before they are uploaded on to the server. We try to get all of our Sega CD games here at Romnation (with a few exceptions) into ISO/MP3 format, which is much smaller than BIN/CUE format.



I downloaded and unzipped the game, but all I got was a rar file. What's going on?

There are a few games that I double compressed before I uploaded them to the server. There are two reasons I did this: To make the games smaller and easier for subscribers to download, and to save server space. I've found that some games are dramatically smaller in rar format than zip, especially using maximum compression. For example, ESPN Baseball Tonight is only 48mb in rar format, however in zip format, it's around 179mb, and that is entirely unacceptable. So if you download a game, unzip it, and find a rar file, just use WinRAR to unrar that file and you'll have your ISO/MP3s.




Is it possible to burn Sega CD games onto a CD-R and play in a real Sega CD/Mega CD machine?

Yes it is possible. Sega CD game images can be burned onto a blank CD-R and played on the original Sega CD machines. No modchip is necessary. In order to do this you will need three things:

1. The game ISO and MP3 files (you'll have to convert the MP3s to WAVs)
2. A cue file. If you don't have one (and you probably don't) you need to make one using a program called Sega Cue Maker
3. A mounting program to burn the files to CD. The most popular programs out there are CDRWin, Alcohol 120% and Nero.


**IMPORTANT NOTE**
You must consider the region of the games that you are burning when attempting to play them in a real Sega CD/Mega CD player. Burned images of (U) games will (usually, see below) only play on US Sega CD players. Images of (E) games will not work on US machines, as the two regions use completely different video standards. Europe uses PAL, which runs at 50 frames-per-second, while the US and Japan use the NTSC standard which runs at 60 frames-per-second. Since the US and Japan both use the same video standard, it is possible to play US games on Japanese machines, and vice versa, however, the game iso must first be converted. This can be done with a program called ConvSCD.




When I try to load <insert name of game here>, the copyright screen with Sonic comes up, then the screen just goes to black and the game doesn't load. What's going on?

With some Sega CD games, especially the ones made by Wolfteam (Road Avenger, Time Gal, Revenge of the Ninja, Cobra Command, etc.), you have to enable the Perfect Synchro (SLOW) for them to load. In Gens, go to the CPU menu and make sure the Perfect Synchro (SLOW) option is checked. If not, then click on it to enable it. Alternatively, some games that were not meant to be run with Perfect Synchro will lock up if it is enabled. So if you experience a random lock-up (usually somewhere before the game's title screen), check to make sure Perfect Synchro is disabled. If it is not, uncheck it, and do a hard reset.




I am trying to play a Sega CD game in Gens, but the graphics look blocky and distorted. How can I correct this?

Go into the Graphics menu and select Render. Change it from Double (the default) to Normal. This will make Gens render the graphics in 320x240 mode, which is what the Sega CD console was originally designed to do. Rendering it in Double (640x480) will make it look blocky and more low-res, since it was never meant to be displayed that way. The downside to using 320x240 mode is that the screen is made smaller, but that's the price you pay for better graphics.




I keep getting an error message from Gens telling me that my BIOS files aren't correctly configured. How do I correct this?

First make sure you have downloaded the Sega CD BIOS files and have placed them in a folder within the Gens folder. Then set the location of your bios files through the Directories and Path Configuration in the Options Menu. While the Directories and Path Configuration window is still open you also need to set the default BRAM directory for Sega CD/Mega CD save games. Click on OK to save your settings.




I keep getting an "Initialize RAM cartridge" message when I try to play certain games. What do I do?

First make sure you've specified directories for both your BRAM and SRAM files in the Options->Directories menu in Gens. Then go to the Options menu, scroll down to the "Sega CD SRAM size" selection, and lower it from its present setting, or set it to None.




I'm trying to play an ISO of <insert name of game here>, but I'm not getting any music or sound at all.

Make sure your ISO and MP3 files are correctly named and numbered. Refer to the text file that comes with Gens for more info on correctly naming ISO/MP3s.




If I'm playing an ISO, what do I do when the game tells me to Insert Disc 2?

With multiple disc games like Night Trap, Ground Zero Texas, Dracula Unleashed, Supreme Warrior, etc., a separate disc image is ripped for each disc. So when the game tells you to insert a different disc, what you need to do is load the ISO for that disc. Usually with Gens, the Load ISO dialog box will automatically pop up when the game tells you to load the next CD. All you have to do is select the ISO file you want and click Open. If for some odd reason, Gens does not automatically pop up the dialog box, you will have to simulate the opening and closing of the disc tray in order to "trick" the emulator into thinking you are inserting a disc. Press Ctrl+V once to fake the opening of the CD tray, then press it again to fake closing it, and a new dialog box will appear to select the new ISO file.




Why do certain parts of some games have no sound?

This is a compatibility issue. Even with a great emu like Gens, there are certain games that are missing sound in a few places. The intros to Dune and Rise of the Dragon for example, are completely missing the sound. Hopefully the emulator developers are working on fixing these issues in a future version. In the meantime, just be thankful that the rest of the game plays ok.




When I'm playing Snatcher, the game locks up when I get inside the turbocycle. Is there any way around this?

This is another compatibility issue between the game and the emulator. Fortunately, you can get around it by downloading and using the save file attached below to bypass the lock-up spot. If you decide to burn the ISO onto a CD-R and play it on a real Sega CD player, you won't have this problem. It's purely an emulation issue.




Is Gens compatible with <insert name of game here>?

Here is the compatibility list for the current version of Gens (v 2.11).

http://xanathis.cherryroms.com/gens/gens.html

If you absolutely CANNOT get a certain game to run on Gens, always check this list to make sure that the emulator is even capable of playing the game to begin with. If a particular game is not listed on this list, it simply means that it wasn't tested by the Gens development team prior to the emulator's release. Therefore the game may work, or it may not. The odds are about 50/50. If the game does not work with Gens, try it on a different Sega CD emulator like Kega Fusion, Xega, or AGES.
Attachment:
unknown snatcher-save.zip ($posts[attachmentsize] KB, $posts[counter] downloads)


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This post has been edited $posts[editcount] time(s), it was last edited by $posts[editor] on 02-08-2004 19:33.

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greymalkin16
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When I try to load <insert name of game here>, the appropriate BIOS screen comes up, but instead of the game loading, the CD player comes up. How do I correct this?

I've noticed that with some games, you have to manually set the Region in order for them to use the correct BIOS (don't ask me why....it's a complete mystery to me). Click on the CPU menu, scroll down to the Country option and change the selection from Auto-detect to whatever BIOS you want to use. If the CD player still comes up instead of the game, you either have a corrupted ISO file/scratched disc, or the emulator is simply not capable of playing that particular game (see above).

*Important Note*
If you are trying to play a Japanese game (J), the emulator will always default to the CD player after the BIOS screen loads...which is apparently what the old Japanese Mega CD systems did. To play the game, move the cursor over to the tab labeled "CD-ROM" located just above the Play button and press Button A on your controller.




Dark Wizard freezes after I beat the Warlord at the end of the first battle, and Shining Force freezes at the end of Book 1. However, the Gens compatibility list reports flawless emulation for these games. Is my ISO/CD messed up?

No, more than likely, there is nothing wrong with your ISO/CD. The list is not quite accurate - there are compatibility issues with Gens and Dark Wizard. When the Gens development team was beta testing, they didn't play enough of it to catch the lock-up problems before the version was released...therefore, the compatibility list incorrectly states Dark Wizard is flawlessly emulated. With Shining Force, you need to have Perfect Synchro enabled in order to bypass the lock-up spot.




When I try to play Corpse Killer or Wondermega Collection, the game won't allow me to press the start button on the start screen. How do I get around this?

This is a problem we came across when we first got our hands on these two games. Here's is gman's solution:

First, go into options make sure Perfect Synchro is turned on. Then go to Set Config. Here choose Controllers and make sure that Port 2 is set to [Empty] from the dropdown. Be sure to select Apply. That should get you up and running.

*NOTE*
Wondermega Collection and Corpse Killer will only work with Kega FUSION. They DO NOT work with Gens because you can't set the second controller port to [Empty] in the Gens configuration menu.

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08-18-2004 21:24 greymalkin16 is offline Send an Email to greymalkin16 Homepage of greymalkin16 Search for Posts by greymalkin16 Add greymalkin16 to your Buddy List AIM Screen Name of greymalkin16: greymalkin16 View the MSN Profile for greymalkin16
greymalkin16
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Registration Date: 08-26-2003
Posts: 1,874
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Frequently Asked Questions for Neo Geo CD Games



What emulator do I use to play Neo Geo CD games?

One of the best and most underrated emulators ever made, in my opinion, is Nebula. Not only does it accurately emulate Neo Geo (in both MVS and Console modes), CPS-1, CPS-2, as well as several Konami, and PGM chipsets, but it is also the best Neo Geo CD emulator in terms of compatibility. All of the Neo Geo CD ISOs here at RomNation were thoroughly tested on Nebula to make sure they worked before they were uploaded. You can download Nebula for Windows from the MAME section of RomNation's emulator database, or get it from the official Nebula developer's homepage located here: http://nebula.emulatronia.com/index2.php




Do I need a special BIOS file to play Neo Geo CD games?

Yes. In addition to the standard Neo Geo BIOS file (neogeo.zip) that you need to play Neo Geo roms with Nebula, you will also need the Neo Geo CD BIOS file if you want to play Neo Geo CD games. The Neo Geo CD BIOS file is named neocd.bin, and should be zipped in a file named neocd.zip. This file is to be placed in the same folder as the neogeo.zip file.




How do I load and play Neo Geo CD ISOs using Nebula?

First, make sure you have both the Neo Geo and the Neo Geo CD BIOS files in the same directory.

Next, start Nebula and refresh the Games List. Then scroll down the Games List to "N", and you'll see a new entry that says "NeoGeo CD". Double click on that, and the Neo Geo CD BIOS screen will load.

Next, press the Tab key on your keyboard to bring up the in-game menu, and go down to "CD Settings", and press Enter. The next menu gives you the option of either loading a Neo Geo CD, or loading an ISO. To load an ISO, go down to "Select ISO Image" and press Enter, which will bring up your Desktop browser. Find the ISO or CUE sheet file you want to load, and click Open. Then press the Esc key to exit the in-game menu.

The ISO or CUE file is now loaded. Press the Start button on your controller to begin the game.




The Neo Geo CD games I downloaded have both CUE files and ISO files. Which one should I load?

It depends on wheter you want the games' music or not. In order to play the MP3 files that come with the ISOs, Nebula has to have a CUE sheet file to read for that particular game. If you select to load the ISO file rather than the CUE, Nebula will play the game fine, but without the music. There are, however, certain games that you will have to play using only the ISO files without music. See next question.




With a few games, when I load the CUE file, all I see is a bunch of garbled text and numbers instead of the graphics. Is the ISO corrupted?

No. This is an emulator compatibility issue. It means Nebula is unable (for whatever reason) to read the CUE sheet properly. The game is still playable, however, you'll just have to load the ISO and play it without the music.




What happened to all the games' intros?

In an attempt to cut down on CD loading times, SNK took out the flashy intros to many of their games, and moved them to their own section of the disc. When you start a game that had one of these intros, you'll see a new option on the title screen that says "Opening Demonstration" or "Demo Game". Selecting that option will play the intro sequence.

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11-25-2004 03:38 greymalkin16 is offline Send an Email to greymalkin16 Homepage of greymalkin16 Search for Posts by greymalkin16 Add greymalkin16 to your Buddy List AIM Screen Name of greymalkin16: greymalkin16 View the MSN Profile for greymalkin16
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