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The Saturn Appreciation Thread


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8 hours ago, pastry said:

Guess one of these might be the go? (HORI Fighting Commander OCTA)



71vLSRJRCSL._AC_SX679_.jpg

I have just bought one of these as it appears to be the natural follow up the Saturn pad that I always hoped the Dreamcast would give us. I am hoping to give it a try on my Series S which is mainly used as a Saturn Emulation machine after work today. I'm hoping the analogue will be great for Nights, Burning Rangers, Manx TT etc etc, while the D pad and 6 buttons great for Alpha 3, Xmen etc..

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On 18/05/2021 at 10:36, bplus said:

Thanks. I was looking at Saturns on eBay. The grey jap version looks really nice but are pricer. Is there anything i should avoid or look for? NTSC or 60hz mod I'm guessing is the only must?

It depends what you plan to do with it. If you would like to install a Fenrir, bear in mind that only 20pin versions are currently available. It always used to be hit and miss but now if there is a picture of the back of the Saturn you can enter the serial number on the website and it will tell you if that model is compatible or not. 

 

https://shop.fenrir-ode.fr/en/products/fenrir

 

Fenrir installation is a doddle by the way, no soldering required. 

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2 minutes ago, chipsgravy said:

It depends what you plan to do with it. If you would like to install a Fenrir, bear in mind that only 20pin versions are currently available. It always used to be hit and miss but now if there is a picture of the back of the Saturn you can enter the serial number on the website and it will tell you if that model is compatible or not. 

 

https://shop.fenrir-ode.fr/en/products/fenrir

 

Fenrir installation is a doddle by the way, no soldering required. 

 

The 21 pin version of the Fenrir is going up for sale on the 28th May according to Ced, so not long to wait if you've got or are getting a later revision of the Saturn.

 

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1 hour ago, chipsgravy said:

I'm wondering whether the Wingman SD will allow it to be used on real hardware as well.  As I have one of those I shall update the firmware and give that a try later too. 

OK I tried this and while it does work as a digital pad but the analogue stick is also picked up as a digital pad. Yes I can steer in Sega Rally but it lacks the finesse of true analogue. I don't know if this is because of the way the Saturn 3D pad originally worked (Switchable) and if this is something patchable by Brooke, or if I just need to hold down a secret combination of buttons when turning on. So its only OK and not worth buying as a nice analogue Saturn controller. 

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OK I have the plus version and the error I was making was not switching the Brooke into 3D pad mode correctly by pressing View/Y. Once this has been done it works great. The only caveat now is that accelerate is on RT. Which isn't by default a shoulder button. Which is fine.  None of the shoulder buttons are analogue. So I guess the takeaway is it's probably better with just a regular Xbox pad, for Sega Rally if you have the Wingman SD. 

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Saturn doesn’t fare well on big screens so the best thing you can do for the looks is to play on a smaller one. Good games for me, bearing in mind some of them look really rough regardless, are (checks game drawer):

 

Daytona USA (original)

Shining Force 3 + translations of the second and third parts, best games on the platform IMO,

Panzer Dragoon

Radiant Silvergun

Burning Rangers as long as you have an English version

Nights

Street Fighter Zero 2

Baku Baku

Puyo Puyo Sun

Athlete Kings/Decathlete

Virtua Fighter Remix

Manx TT

 

Ive never been much of a fan of the original Sega Rally but it does make good use of the hardware, see also Virtua Fighter 2 and Dead or Alive. 

 

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3 hours ago, pastry said:

Yeah it seems a very good option, micro-switched etc so should be quality. Let us know how you get on!

So I set the brook into Arcade Mode and fired up SFZ3 to give the D Pad a bit of a work out. And its just OK. It doesn't feel as good as a Saturn Model 2 pad nor any of the 8bitdo recreations. I found diagonals difficult to pull off consistently. Especially jump right (When facing right). But most of the moves came out about the same as on other pads. I did find it rubbing my thumb though, maybe due to its smaller size. So the OCTA pad, overall a bit Meh. 

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1 hour ago, carlospie said:

Is there a recommended game list for the Saturn? Il be honest all the ones I have played so far have been appalling 

What kind of games do you like? If you like 90's arcade style titles then there probably is no better console. Yes you could emulate using the actual arcade roms these days but it goes back to the "best version of a game" thread. And I prefer ports with all the extras they bring. 

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3 hours ago, carlospie said:

Is there a recommended game list for the Saturn? Il be honest all the ones I have played so far have been appalling 

 

Currently on a Saturn binge thanks to my RHEA board, and there's a ton of great games which are still good today - I'm mostly playing stuff I never played back in the day. Not all are shmups either. I kinda like the dirty look of 3D polygons on the system... :unsure:

 

What did you find appalling, so as to gauge what you might like?

 

Some lesser mentioned games I find to be still worthwhile:

Bulk Slash (two chubsters enter an arena and try to cut each other with butter knives)

Shinrei Jusatsushi Taroumaru

Three Dirty Dwarves

Keio Flying Squadron 2

Power Slave / Exhumed

Ninja Penguin

Astal

Virtua Cop 1 + 2 (with gun, natch)

Lode Runner (the tiny sprites are GORGEOUS)

Elevator Action Returns

SCUD

Heir of Zendor (weird strategy game set in the sky)

Shinobi (I liked the photo sprites)

Dark Saviour (possibly the greatest game on Earth?)

Deep Fear (Resi cheese horror)

Baku Baku Animal (great puzzler)

Saturn Bomberman (the best 1 player campaign in the entire Bomberman series - 10 player multiplayer!!)

Leynos 2 (2D mecha action!)

Panzer Dragoon Saga (everyone mentions this, but it bears repeating)

 

That's a partial curated list from my first SD card. I've left a lot of weird jank out, and I'm too lazy to check my second SD card. Go forth and explore.

 

I will leave everyone with this video of Bulk Slash:

 

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2 hours ago, chipsgravy said:

What kind of games do you like? If you like 90's arcade style titles then there probably is no better console. Yes you could emulate using the actual arcade roms these days but it goes back to the "best version of a game" thread. And I prefer ports with all the extras they bring. 

Where's that thread? I can't find it !

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Due to a change of circumstance,I may be forced to sell my beloved grey Saturn setup with satiator and wireless pads etc. Thought I'd mention here in case anyone here fancies it (in which case PM me) before I have to list it. Spent £300 getting the blooming satiator here! Bur for anyone looking for a complete setup ready for your big screen modern TV my package is unbeatable. As I say, PM me if interested

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1 hour ago, Camel said:

Three Dirty Dwarves is an excellent shout but so unforgiving.

 

I managed to finish it on original hardware (not emulated). I found that since you could revive a fallen Dwarf by touching it, technically you kinda had infinite health/lives. Did you complete it?  It was made by the same company as Ecco on mega Drive I think...?

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12 hours ago, strider said:

Shame on you @SketchAstal is dull as ditchwater.

 

True, but it gives a great first impression. I don't know what @carlospie has tried and disliked. Maybe all he loaded up was Clockwork Knight, hoping for some Donkey Kong Country style CG platforming, only to see how hideous it is. Maybe all he's played is Dragon Heart! At least Astal looks decent for the first few minutes.

 

Should we swap in another platformer, maybe Silhouette Mirage? Or should we just list Keio 2 as a fine 2D platformer?

 

I had a look on my second SD card and forgot to add some obvious choices:

Gun Griffon games (FPS mecha)

Legend of Oasis (Zelda style platform action-RPG)

Dragon Force (finely balanced tactical strategy)

 

Interestingly, I do not have Guardian heroes anywhere, since I have that on the X360. Same with Radiant Silvergun. Man, I wish someone would re-release Dark Saviour. I'd rate that my #1 Saturn game.

 

ALso, there are a whole bunch of completed Sega Saturn fan-translations, including Sakura Wars! And a fan-dub of Bulk Slash!

 

CHECK OUT THE REDDIT ON SATURN FAN-TRANSLATIONS

 

Completed projects:

Cotton 2: Magical Night Dreams

Dragon Force II

Linkle Liver Story

Policenauts

Revolutionary Girl Utena

Sakura Wars

Sega Ages: Castle of Illusion & QuackShot

Valhollian

Vandal Hearts

 

Ongoing projects:

Akumajou Dracula X

Bulk Slash

Fire Pro Wrestling S: 6Men Scramble

Grandia

Langrisser III - Currently being worked on by CyberWarriorX who is also involved with the Princess Crown translation project. An alpha build is available here.

Lunar: Silver Star Story

Lunar: Silver Star Story MPEG-ban

Magical School Lunar

Nanatsu Kaze no Shima Monogatari

Ninpen Manmaru - Playable from start to finish but the ending is untranslated. Latest patch is available here and requires Sega Saturn Patcher.

Princess Crown

Shining Force III Scenarios 1-3 and Premium Disc - Still being polished up but all discs are fully playable from start to finish.

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I think most of the twitch/arcade-style and original titles (1st party in particular) have stood up really well. Some of my favourites: 


Burning Rangers

NiGHTS

Radiant Silvergun

Panzer Dragoon Saga

Sega Rally

VF2 / Fighters Megamix

Exhumed/Powerslave

SF Alpha/Zero 2

Elevator Action 2

Battle Garegga

SEGA Ages Outrun

Saturn Bomberman

Virtual On

 

There’s a lot of stuff I wouldn’t touch today, games that have simply not survived being “of their day”. I wouldn’t bother to play Thunderhawk 2, for example.

 

Saturn is an amazing system for deep games that don’t take too much time investment. No grinding, no busywork.. great era for games, just pick and choose wisely and play the styles of game you like. 
 

I would never get the full ROM dump, some people like the idea of having them all but.. no.

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