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NEC PC-Engine/SuperGrafx => PC Engine/SuperGrafx Discussion => Topic started by: Androsynth on November 25, 2019, 11:15:48 AM

Title: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Androsynth on November 25, 2019, 11:15:48 AM
So getting back into this system again has been fun. Currently, for the near future, my Duo R is down for the count, so I'm limited to Hucard games at the moment. I have a modest collection of good stuff: the usual suspects like Gradius, Salamander, Image Fight, Zipang, New Zealand, Final Soldier, Daisenpu, Download, Xevious and the like. I was just getting into the imports when I moved up north and packed it all away.

Problem is, I lost my list of titles to get, and it's been ages since I've looked into the Japanese portion of the library. I've forgotten what's even available. I'm a rabid shmup fan, but I also like most other genres.

Any titles you fine folks would care to recommend? Not looking for CIB, loose is fine, affordable is even better (I do plan on getting a few of the pricier shooters like Tatsujin at some point). I'll be diving through the PC Engine bible again to kind of learn the library, but I figured you folks could steer me in the right direction. Thanks!

Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: nectarsis on November 25, 2019, 10:50:16 PM
One of my favorite games I suggest to everybody... great music, colorful, great fun:

http://www.pcengine.co.uk/HTML_Games/Genji_Tsushin_Agedama.htm

super fun:

http://www.pcengine.co.uk/HTML_Games/Son_Son_II.htm

underappreciated:

http://www.pcengine.co.uk/HTML_Games/Silent_Debuggers.htm

superb music:

http://www.pcengine.co.uk/HTML_Games/Benkei_Gaiden.htm


Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Necromancer on November 26, 2019, 12:27:19 AM
These aren't exclusive to JP, but they're all games I love: all 3 Bonks, all 3 Bomberman (they're rather cheap), Battle Load Runner, Skweek, Dead Moon, Dungeon Explorer, Air Zonk, Cadash, Galaga, Time Cruise, both Neutopias, Ninja Spirit, Parasol Stars, Splatterhouse, and of course Hatris.

If you don't have a flashcart yet, I'd start there.  Then you can sample before buying and play sweet hacks and translations like those for Energy, Bubblegum Crash, Shada, etc. and fun homebrews like Atlantean, Island Adventure, Flappy Bird, Nantatette (sp?), etc.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: AkumajoTonyX on November 26, 2019, 02:46:05 AM
You can't justify being alive until you've experienced Blazing Lazers (or Gunhed in Jap).
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Androsynth on November 26, 2019, 10:44:37 AM
Thanks for the suggestions! To be clear, I'm only missing about 6 games for the US hucard set, so I have most definitely played and appreciated stuff like Blazing Lazers, Silent Debuggers, Bonk, Dead Moon, Cadash etc. And I agree, those games are amazing, particularly blazing lazers/gunhed, Silent Debuggers, and Galaga 88.

It's specifically the PCE import stuff that I'm unfamiliar with. Genshi Tsushin Agedama and Son Son II look very fun, I will add those to the list for sure.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: majors on November 26, 2019, 01:07:21 PM
I had a busted CD drive for a while and got back into HuCard games for a spell. I enjoyed Dragon Saber, Parodius, Xevious, Twin Tiger, Final Soldgier, Momo Katsugeki and Zipang(for imports) along with what others have mentioned already.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Androsynth on November 27, 2019, 12:37:17 PM
I had a busted CD drive for a while and got back into HuCard games for a spell. I enjoyed Dragon Saber, Parodius, Xevious, Twin Tiger, Final Soldgier, Momo Katsugeki and Zipang(for imports) along with what others have mentioned already.

Thanks. Twin Tiger I have heard of, but I missed Dragon Saber and Momo. Adding those.

I love Zipang. Was always a huge Solomon's Key fan back in the day, and was delighted to find a spiritual (better) sequel on the PCE.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Punch on December 16, 2019, 08:42:14 AM
The easy way to get good PCE hucards is to go after shooters. Tired of a roided out NES game hucard? Buy R-Type. That game you bought sucks? Buy Raiden.

etc. etc. They're the ones that more represent the console as a 16-bit machine
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: _joshuaTurbo on December 20, 2019, 03:09:21 PM
sidearms.


 :icon_cat_derpy:
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: majors on December 23, 2019, 12:11:19 PM
sidearms.

Troll early, troll often.

Ordyne.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Gypsy on December 23, 2019, 04:52:00 PM
Ordyne and Sidearms are fine!

Been enjoying Super Volleyball.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Punch on December 24, 2019, 02:50:22 PM
Sidearms is one of the proper 16bitish games, and it's fun. Nothing wrong with it
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Gredler on December 24, 2019, 07:59:30 PM
Sidearms is one of the proper 16bitish games, and it's fun. Nothing wrong with it

Can you explain further how it is more 16bitish ?
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Necromancer on December 24, 2019, 08:52:10 PM
Well, it's clearly more than 15 bitish, but it's hard to say that it's all the way up to 17 bitish.   :cook:
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Black Tiger on December 27, 2019, 11:36:01 PM
Sidearms is one of the proper 16bitish games, and it's fun. Nothing wrong with it

Can you explain further how it is more 16bitish ?

Arcade quality pixelart & shading, higher resolution than Genesis or SNES can do, arcade-superior sound, action that would cause slowdown in many Genesis shooter game engines and would melt the SNES. :boom:
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: AkumajoTonyX on December 28, 2019, 12:04:16 AM
Sidearms is one of the proper 16bitish games, and it's fun. Nothing wrong with it

Can you explain further how it is more 16bitish ?

Arcade quality pixelart & shading, higher resolution than Genesis or SNES can do, arcade-superior sound, action that would cause slowdown in many Genesis shooter game engines and would melt the SNES. :boom:

The PC Engine / Turbo GrafX-16 has two 8-bit processors running in parallel, does it not? That is why it is considered 16-bit, yes?

(https://retroresolution.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/pc-engine_alpha_204w.png)
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Black Tiger on December 28, 2019, 03:38:33 PM
The PC Engine / Turbo GrafX-16 has two 8-bit processors running in parallel, does it not? That is why it is considered 16-bit, yes?

(https://retroresolution.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/pc-engine_alpha_204w.png)

That's a myth as old as the console wars.

The "16-bit" generation got its name from Sega putting a large 16-BIT decoration on the Mega Drive. Before that, no one talked about bits at all.

The "bits" of a cpu isn't a measure of its performance, but even if it was it is still only one part of a console's hardware. The PC Engine's single cpu is "8-bit", but it handles 2D games better than competing 16-bit generation consoles.

The 16-bit graphics chip and the overall hardware design of the PC Engine also makes it the best at animating background tiles and especially sprites. A game like Sapphire shows how the cpu can handle Neo Geo game levels of sprites/action/animation, even with 2-player co-op, without slowing down. You'll notice that PC Engine games tend to have a variety of shapes and sizes of sprites, while SNES games have oddly proportioned sprites and minimal variety, similar to NES games.

The PC Engine has the most potential for color/shading/detail by having 8 times as many palettes as Genesis and twice as many as SNES, but this is the most underused hardware strength in the existing library.

Overall, the Genesis and PC Engine are comparable at handling a lot of action and variety, with the SNES far behind and closer to Sega Master System/Game Gear. Each console has strengths/weakness and trade-offs, with the SNES being the one with the most trade-offs.

In the end the PC Engine and its games are closest to other consoles that are grouped under the moniker of the "16-bit generation".
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: turboxray on December 28, 2019, 06:33:04 PM
Sidearms is one of the proper 16bitish games, and it's fun. Nothing wrong with it

Can you explain further how it is more 16bitish ?

Arcade quality pixelart & shading, higher resolution than Genesis or SNES can do, arcade-superior sound, action that would cause slowdown in many Genesis shooter game engines and would melt the SNES. :boom:

The PC Engine / Turbo GrafX-16 has two 8-bit processors running in parallel, does it not? That is why it is considered 16-bit, yes?

(https://retroresolution.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/pc-engine_alpha_204w.png)
Ohh man, I'm sooo glad it did not have that setup. Especially if it was something like 2 x 3.57mhz like some magazines reported haha.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: AkumajoTonyX on December 29, 2019, 01:11:30 PM
The PC Engine / Turbo GrafX-16 has two 8-bit processors running in parallel, does it not? That is why it is considered 16-bit, yes?

(https://retroresolution.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/pc-engine_alpha_204w.png)

That's a myth as old as the console wars.

The "16-bit" generation got its name from Sega putting a large 16-BIT decoration on the Mega Drive. Before that, no one talked about bits at all.

The "bits" of a cpu isn't a measure of its performance, but even if it was it is still only one part of a console's hardware. The PC Engine's single cpu is "8-bit", but it handles 2D games better than competing 16-bit generation consoles.

The 16-bit graphics chip and the overall hardware design of the PC Engine also makes it the best at animating background tiles and especially sprites. A game like Sapphire shows how the cpu can handle Neo Geo game levels of sprites/action/animation, even with 2-player co-op, without slowing down. You'll notice that PC Engine games tend to have a variety of shapes and sizes of sprites, while SNES games have oddly proportioned sprites and minimal variety, similar to NES games.

The PC Engine has the most potential for color/shading/detail by having 8 times as many palettes as Genesis and twice as many as SNES, but this is the most underused hardware strength in the existing library.

Overall, the Genesis and PC Engine are comparable at handling a lot of action and variety, with the SNES far behind and closer to Sega Master System/Game Gear. Each console has strengths/weakness and trade-offs, with the SNES being the one with the most trade-offs.

In the end the PC Engine and its games are closest to other consoles that are grouped under the moniker of the "16-bit generation".

Excellent response. It is a tragedy that TTi didn't know how to market the Turbo GrafX-16 here in the States. I always knew that it was the better machine than Nintendo's and Sega's. Imagine what could have been, had the team really pushed through the biased magazines of the day.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: turboxray on December 29, 2019, 04:54:49 PM
The whole bit thing came from computer culture, even in Japan. CPU's have a much more of an impact in the small home computers, especially ones that lack much hardware acceleration like gaming consoles had.

The Atari ST, the ST stands for 16|32 (Sixteen Thirty two). Meaning 16bit data bus, 32bit CPU. And that's the original 68000! And from a software developer standpoint, the 68000 is a 32bit CPU. So by extension the Genesis/MD is too. That makes the PCE even MORE impressive haha.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Punch on December 30, 2019, 12:22:16 PM
The PC Engine / Turbo GrafX-16 has two 8-bit processors running in parallel, does it not? That is why it is considered 16-bit, yes?

(https://retroresolution.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/pc-engine_alpha_204w.png)

That's a myth as old as the console wars.

The "16-bit" generation got its name from Sega putting a large 16-BIT decoration on the Mega Drive. Before that, no one talked about bits at all.

The "bits" of a cpu isn't a measure of its performance, but even if it was it is still only one part of a console's hardware. The PC Engine's single cpu is "8-bit", but it handles 2D games better than competing 16-bit generation consoles.

The 16-bit graphics chip and the overall hardware design of the PC Engine also makes it the best at animating background tiles and especially sprites. A game like Sapphire shows how the cpu can handle Neo Geo game levels of sprites/action/animation, even with 2-player co-op, without slowing down. You'll notice that PC Engine games tend to have a variety of shapes and sizes of sprites, while SNES games have oddly proportioned sprites and minimal variety, similar to NES games.

The PC Engine has the most potential for color/shading/detail by having 8 times as many palettes as Genesis and twice as many as SNES, but this is the most underused hardware strength in the existing library.

Overall, the Genesis and PC Engine are comparable at handling a lot of action and variety, with the SNES far behind and closer to Sega Master System/Game Gear. Each console has strengths/weakness and trade-offs, with the SNES being the one with the most trade-offs.

In the end the PC Engine and its games are closest to other consoles that are grouped under the moniker of the "16-bit generation".

BT summed up my thoughts perfectly, but the PCE "not being 16-bit", or rather the processor being a custom 6502 meant that any hope of having advance 3D shenanigans like the genesis EA sims and later "mode 7" efforts is all but lost (even though theoretically the PCE's video hardware is much more suited for the task, as it's the only console that can access Video RAM at any time -- and trust me, this is a big deal in the console world!). Doing 3D math is slow if you have to juggle 8 bits at a time.

I feel like not only was NEC marketing terrible but also they tended to highlight only the low budget JP games... nothing wrong with most of them, but it's a fact that those games tend to look like "roided out famicom games" as I usually say to Lukester, both in art and gameplay mechanics. There's plenty of great, "arcade feel" software on HuCards and the CD addon is chock full of them, but alas we got a lot of "8-bit-ish" games on the US side and that tends to poison the well in internet discussions quite a bit, and that's not to say of the crappy US exclusive output.

The NAMCO PCE games are pretty good examples of what I mean by "8-bitish" but I'm sure you can think of plenty more on your own, both US and JP only soft.

(https://www.mobygames.com/images/shots/l/110669-final-lap-twin-turbografx-16-screenshot-the-over-world.png)

(http://www.honestgamers.com/images/games/24/W/7130/1.jpg)

(https://www.vizzed.com/vizzedboard/retro/user_screenshots/saves33/333799/TURBOGRAFX16--PacLand_Jan19%207_30_49.png)

It's a miracle that somehow we got arcade ports and some solid original works alongside those lame games (visually and sometimes mechanically too), because I don't think anyone in the US would have cared about this console at the time if all releases were Final Court Tennis, War of the Dead and Energy.

We can only imagine what could have been if the PCE was released one or two years earlier (since they spent so much time thinking about the US form factor and had to fight with the genny despite being on the JP market 3 years earlier). It's a cool console, NEC licensing was nowhere as bad as Nintendo, and devs would be happy to oblige and jump ship from Nintendo to PCE.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: majors on December 30, 2019, 01:58:30 PM
That makes the PCE even MORE impressive haha.

When people get in to the "Turbo is 8-bits, blah" arguments, I use the tactic of saying exactly what you said, "Isn't it even more impressive then?".

Of course we are an echo chamber of obey love here...
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Necromancer on December 30, 2019, 02:22:18 PM
Intellivision is 16 bit, and Jaguar is 64 bits.

Bits means shit.  Do the math!   :mrgreen:
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Black Tiger on December 30, 2019, 02:56:44 PM
Even though the PC Engine isn't suited for realtime rendering of scaling/rotation/3D, it can do them. Meanwhile the Neo Geo can't calculate anything in realtime at all, although it has hardware support for a specific type of scaling.

But no one feels that they're missing out on crude 3D effects in Neo Geo games. It's the 2D games that make the 16-bit generation and the PC Engine has a lot of timeless "16-bit" games.

Many of the "8-bit" style PCE games are still cool, but most don't represent the library's signature feel(s) that sets it apart from the other 16-bit consoles.

It's also cool that the main 16-bit generation consoles each have a different kind of chip sound. Imagine how boring it would be if each console didn't have a distinct "voice".
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: turboxray on December 31, 2019, 09:46:17 PM

BT summed up my thoughts perfectly, but the PCE "not being 16-bit", or rather the processor being a custom 6502 meant that any hope of having advance 3D shenanigans like the genesis EA sims and later "mode 7" efforts is all but lost (even though theoretically the PCE's video hardware is much more suited for the task, as it's the only console that can access Video RAM at any time -- and trust me, this is a big deal in the console world!). Doing 3D math is slow if you have to juggle 8 bits at a time.

Can you expand on that? Unclear what EA sims. Do you mean Road Rash? If so, if the slower-than-NES Master system z80 can pull it off then surely the PCE can too. Not sure what mode 7 stuff you're talking about. Unless it's the recent stuff in the past 5 years, and that's simply because of Genesis linear pixel mode for tiles. Planar is a bitch for anything pixel related. I've done realtime scaling on the PCE, and it was slower to convert the scaled linear graphics to planar than it was to do the scaling itself! 3D stuff was extremely limited for era, outside of F-zero and Mario Kart. But if 3D really mattered, something like an SVP or FX2 chip would have served that purpose on the PCE (I mean outside of MUL the SNES has it worse than the PCE; 16bit, 24bit, and 32bit math is faster on the PCE than the SNES haha).
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Punch on January 01, 2020, 12:33:22 PM

BT summed up my thoughts perfectly, but the PCE "not being 16-bit", or rather the processor being a custom 6502 meant that any hope of having advance 3D shenanigans like the genesis EA sims and later "mode 7" efforts is all but lost (even though theoretically the PCE's video hardware is much more suited for the task, as it's the only console that can access Video RAM at any time -- and trust me, this is a big deal in the console world!). Doing 3D math is slow if you have to juggle 8 bits at a time.

Can you expand on that? Unclear what EA sims. Do you mean Road Rash? If so, if the slower-than-NES Master system z80 can pull it off then surely the PCE can too. Not sure what mode 7 stuff you're talking about. Unless it's the recent stuff in the past 5 years, and that's simply because of Genesis linear pixel mode for tiles. Planar is a bitch for anything pixel related. I've done realtime scaling on the PCE, and it was slower to convert the scaled linear graphics to planar than it was to do the scaling itself! 3D stuff was extremely limited for era, outside of F-zero and Mario Kart. But if 3D really mattered, something like an SVP or FX2 chip would have served that purpose on the PCE (I mean outside of MUL the SNES has it worse than the PCE; 16bit, 24bit, and 32bit math is faster on the PCE than the SNES haha).

Yeah for Mode 7 I meant homebrew.

There are plenty of aircraft sims on the Genesis and Falcon doesn't touch the graphical complexity of those (even though framerates are just as bad...)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYfHh62JEdE

It was way faster in my memory though. In the words of Detective Cole Phelps, "I guess I made a mistake..."
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: AkumajoTonyX on January 02, 2020, 01:28:36 AM
I always thought it was cheesy how the artists would draw half of a person's head/face, and then just copy and paste it for the other side. Such a lazy move, and makes the characters look goofy.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: turboxray on January 03, 2020, 05:48:14 PM
I always thought it was cheesy how the artists would draw half of a person's head/face, and then just copy and paste it for the other side. Such a lazy move, and makes the characters look goofy.

Yeah but saves rom (and vram on other systems) space because cell flipping.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: turboxray on January 03, 2020, 05:52:52 PM

BT summed up my thoughts perfectly, but the PCE "not being 16-bit", or rather the processor being a custom 6502 meant that any hope of having advance 3D shenanigans like the genesis EA sims and later "mode 7" efforts is all but lost (even though theoretically the PCE's video hardware is much more suited for the task, as it's the only console that can access Video RAM at any time -- and trust me, this is a big deal in the console world!). Doing 3D math is slow if you have to juggle 8 bits at a time.

Can you expand on that? Unclear what EA sims. Do you mean Road Rash? If so, if the slower-than-NES Master system z80 can pull it off then surely the PCE can too. Not sure what mode 7 stuff you're talking about. Unless it's the recent stuff in the past 5 years, and that's simply because of Genesis linear pixel mode for tiles. Planar is a bitch for anything pixel related. I've done realtime scaling on the PCE, and it was slower to convert the scaled linear graphics to planar than it was to do the scaling itself! 3D stuff was extremely limited for era, outside of F-zero and Mario Kart. But if 3D really mattered, something like an SVP or FX2 chip would have served that purpose on the PCE (I mean outside of MUL the SNES has it worse than the PCE; 16bit, 24bit, and 32bit math is faster on the PCE than the SNES haha).

Yeah for Mode 7 I meant homebrew.

There are plenty of aircraft sims on the Genesis and Falcon doesn't touch the graphical complexity of those (even though framerates are just as bad...)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYfHh62JEdE

It was way faster in my memory though. In the words of Detective Cole Phelps, "I guess I made a mistake..."

 I can't speak to Falcon's code, but only having 8k of system ram probably contributes to it. A polygon filler isn't that quick on planar graphics either. Considering both Falcon and Gunboat are small roms, probably don't have nice LUTs for faster acceleration. There's a 3D raytracer (wolf-3D 2D ray caster) game on the Genesis (blood something), and 768k of it is basically pre-compiled code path! Screw LUTs, that's the next level haha.
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: AkumajoTonyX on January 03, 2020, 08:10:05 PM
I always thought it was cheesy how the artists would draw half of a person's head/face, and then just copy and paste it for the other side. Such a lazy move, and makes the characters look goofy.

Yeah but saves rom (and vram on other systems) space because cell flipping.

Interesting. I hadn't thought that it would have been rom-draining to do so. Thanks!
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: lukester 3.0 on April 17, 2020, 06:23:06 PM
So getting back into this system again has been fun. Currently, for the near future, my Duo R is down for the count, so I'm limited to Hucard games at the moment. I have a modest collection of good stuff: the usual suspects like Gradius, Salamander, Image Fight, Zipang, New Zealand, Final Soldier, Daisenpu, Download, Xevious and the like. I was just getting into the imports when I moved up north and packed it all away.

Problem is, I lost my list of titles to get, and it's been ages since I've looked into the Japanese portion of the library. I've forgotten what's even available. I'm a rabid shmup fan, but I also like most other genres.

Any titles you fine folks would care to recommend? Not looking for CIB, loose is fine, affordable is even better (I do plan on getting a few of the pricier shooters like Tatsujin at some point). I'll be diving through the PC Engine bible again to kind of learn the library, but I figured you folks could steer me in the right direction. Thanks!

Platformers are my favorite genre, and PCE has some pretty good ones. I'll recommend a bunch (you probably know rondo already). Most of the good ones are on Hucard

Bonk 2 (and of course the first one...Bonk 3 is decent but not must play imo)
New Adventure Island
Liquid Kids
SonSon II
Ninja Gaiden
Momotaro Katsugeki
Parasol Stars
Wonder Boy III Dragon Trap
Aoi Blink
Chiki Chiki Boys
Samurai Ghost
Strider (second rate port with serious issues but still one of the best games ever)
Jackie Chan
Ninja spirit, Tonma and Gekisha Boy
Legendary Axe I and II

I'm not a big Valis fan but you might want to try 3, 4, and 1. Pac-Land is a fun diversion
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: Strider77 on November 08, 2020, 12:16:01 AM
"action that would cause slowdown in many Genesis shooter"

LOL... 
Title: Re: Recommend me some PCE Hucards
Post by: HuDuo on November 15, 2020, 02:57:53 PM
Yeah, thatís a good one.

Itís hard to go wrong with splatterhouse.