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Retro Freak - 11 in 1 system Japanese console


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I've only just stumbled accross this being mentioned in this months Edge. It sounds pretty good on paper:

Consoles supported:

Famicom

SNES/Super Famicom

Mega Drive/Genesis

PC Engine

TurboGrafx-16

Supergrafx

Game Boy

Game Boy Advance

Game Boy Color

It's certainly not the most beautiful console ever made...

retrofreakP10.jpg

retro-freak-2.jpg

It can also run ROMs as well as original cartridges, and has HDMI output with 720p upscaling as well as save states and screen filters. It requires an adaptor to run original controllers.

The PCE support makes is instantly better than the Retron 5 although the extra outlay for original controller support is a shame. Apparently it supports Duelshock 3 and 4's though which is nice.

Earlier this year it was announced that Cyber Gadget would be releasing a feature packed alternative to Hyperkin’s RetroN5 console. Set to offer support for eleven different systems of yesteryear, those who are yet to own an all-in-one console need look no further than the Retro Freak.

Priced up at $169.99 for the standalone system, you may be wondering what exactly this offers over the aforementioned unit. Simply put the Retro Freak’s added features are a TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine card slot and game compatibility, the ability to save game ROMs to an SD card, and the fantastic addition of support for Dualshock 3 and 4 control pads.

Furthermore Play Asia have confirmed that the Retro Freak’s system menu’s can be changed into English, and a multi-regional power supply will be included in the console’s box.

Thoughts?
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I'd be interested in seeing a side-by-side with the Retron. Hopefully someone will do one. Even though I have a retro room full of original machines, I'd still quite like to have something like this set up on my main home cinema system in the lounge. It'd be ace for having mates over and playing in the comfort of the front room.

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I'd be interested in seeing a side-by-side with the Retron. Hopefully someone will do one. Even though I have a retro room full of original machines, I'd still quite like to have something like this set up on my main home cinema system in the lounge. It'd be ace for having mates over and playing in the comfort of the front room.

It won't run carts but I'm having fun with a Retropie/Emulationstation powered Raspberry Pi 2.

Cheaper too.

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I'd be interested in seeing a side-by-side with the Retron. Hopefully someone will do one. Even though I have a retro room full of original machines, I'd still quite like to have something like this set up on my main home cinema system in the lounge. It'd be ace for having mates over and playing in the comfort of the front room.

I did a review of the Retron recently, will most likely to do one for this as well:

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They are all over the place in Japan but are stupidly expensive IMO. Cheapest I saw was about £110 including tax. It is actually really small, which is an advantage. I'm tempted but will wait for the price to drop unless I can grab one cheaply in duty free today.

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I think they're neat things in principle. They fill a nice niche for people that can't accomodate a collection of genuine hardware but who also want that feeling of playing on a console rather than sitting at a PC running emulators. I've never been a fan of the latter, even before I'd put a decent retro collection together.

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I think they're neat things in principle. They fill a nice niche for people that can't accomodate a collection of genuine hardware but who also want that feeling of playing on a console rather than sitting at a PC running emulators. I've never been a fan of the latter, even before I'd put a decent retro collection together.

They definitely have their place and if the industry was smart enough to sell official SD card game compilations or small micro transactions they would make decent money IMO. For me personally emulation via PC is just too fiddly and too much effort, which is why I like original hardware. This is a good middle ground.

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Yeah but don't forget that doing something like modding a console doesn't even exist to a great many people. This is a gaming forum where we're aware of the options and none of us are really phased by something like that, or tinkering with an emulator. These things could have a far broader appeal if they were marketed at "normal" people who just want a taste of the retro bug. The ones that get it right in that sense are the machines like the Blaze Mega Drive handhelds. If they had the marketing budget to push these in a similar way I bet they could print cash.

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So, do these things just run games via software emulation?

If so, I'm not sure I see the point.

A few people in this thread have mentioned the inconvenience of messing around with pc emulation as if that is the alternative to this thing, but let's remember this isn't 1998 and the retro systems in question run perfectly fine on any number of small, cheap devices these days. I have a softmodded wii that does the trick. The wii cost me 1000 yen here in Japan, whereas this thing goes for close to 20 times that much. The official snes controller for the wii is also a lot better than the thing that comes with this, I'm sure. I also have an nvidia shield, but that was more expensive. I'm sure any cheap modern android device would run these systems just fine though.

I have a lot of original hardware and games too and I honestly can't understand who would want this thing. Surely anybody who cares enough to buy retro cartridges is going to want to run them on the actual hardware and not as a glorified rom in some emulator. I cannot understand the mindset that would want to pay for proper carts but then run them on an emulator..

I have a handheld snes that is based around cloned hardware or something and I think it's excellent and feels a lot better than software emulation to me. These software emulation devices are basically just gimped android devices with cartridge slots though.

Pretty much every year someone says that emulation is much improved so I give it a go, again. Every year since about 2000, it is still as much of a pain as it always has been. First you have to find a good, genuine emulator that won't put viruses on your PC. Then you have to make sure it is the right version. Then you have to search for ROMs on dodgy sites and again hope that you don't get a virus. Then you have to find the right batch file or some ahit like that. It is a massive pain for anyone but the reckless or tech savvy.

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Emulation is annoying compared to plug and play hardware, but I successfully installed epsxe and played through mega man x4 with no fuss. And zsnes is a doddle to install and play games on. I've used fusion a few times for Mega Drive stuff too. The only emu that is complicated is mame, which these new systems don't cover anyway.

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Yeah sure...

16 bit and below emulators are an absolute breeze to get running. I believe that anyone with the most basic ability to use a computer could get up and running easily if they wanted to. A person who can't load a rom on one of the more popular 8/16 bit console emulators would be unable to run basically any program going/open a video file etc I reckon.

Also, about the roms, it's more like "go to one of the well known sites that have every rom for the retro systems and either download the particular game or a full romset in a few minutes".

This thing is also running emulators as far as i know, so basically, instead of going to the trouble of clicking file/load rom you are buying an expensive cart in order to extract the data and run the rom on an emulator.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of original hardware as opposed to emulators but these things which combine software emulation and the use of original carts make no sense to me. I can see that some like the idea though.

Please point me to a reputable site where I can download a full romset in minutes, I've been after that for years. MD and MS will do.

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I think it's really fucking stupid we still can't talk about this on this site. There's clearly hardware for sale now specifically designed for playing 'roms' and like children we're not allowed to talk about where to get them.

These days, I wouldn't know where to start. It doesn't make me any less of a gamer.

For the record, I'd pick one of these up to play games on, if I knew of a good place to get the games from.

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Yes it is a bit silly but it's not legit or legal so exactly the same reason why we aren't allowed to post links to Torrent sites. Could go against the forum if it ever kicked off, companies have had sites taken down for less so forums aren't free from it. Best to be safe than sorry.

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Yeah I would be 100% behind any idea to get rid of the stupid "no ROM talk" rule. It goes on practically everywhere else on the internet, some forums I use (English Amiga Board springs to mind) even have dedicated upload areas so people can share files and then all talk about them. It's easy to say "better safe than sorry" and get people to nod along in agreement, because that's the sort of thing wise old grandmothers say. But it totally ignores the point that in this case being "safe" restricts our ability to talk openly about something that's clearly worth discussing (how to find and get ROMS to run). And the "sorry" part ... we're really running very little risk. Has anyone heard of a gaming forum getting into trouble for allowing discussion of ROMs, ever? In the whole 20+ years we've been doing this now? I think we can take it for granted that there is very little to no actual risk.

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Yeah I think it's COOL to talk about ROMS

I used to think that myself a few years ago. It used to be a really good site - or so I heard *massive wink* - but last time I used it a year or so back it had become a nightmare of adverts, pop-ups and you could only download one ROM at a time if you wanted to do something horribly illegal like that which I couldn't possibly condone because it directly supports the international drug and human trafficing trade.

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Anyone who managed to find rllmuk and can't find a ROM of Sonic 2 is rather unique, I would suspect.

It's literally the easiest thing in the universe. The only complicated bit is when you try and set up massive suites to do everything in a pretty fashion. Playing actual individual games is double click, set up controls, done.

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