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Atari 2600+ Beta Update 1.1


Ben from Plaion

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On 12/28/2023 at 4:04 PM, suspicious_milk said:

I'm a Linux user, not a zealot ūüėÖ

 

Everyone has different wants/needs & that's fine.

 

WINE is wonderful when used as intended with reasonable expectations.  It'd be pretty weird (and unprofessional) to have an app that's flashing hardware depend on it. I don't think we'll see that anyways.  It can be a good band-aid in desperate times though.

Agree. If one is on Linux, the more pragmatic approach may be a windows virtual machine with USB pass-through. I seem to recall this was possible with software like virtual box. I wouldn't rely on WINE to run hardware flash tools.  

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27 minutes ago, undefinedopcode said:

Agree. If one is on Linux, the more pragmatic approach may be a windows virtual machine with USB pass-through. I seem to recall this was possible with software like virtual box. I wouldn't rely on WINE to run hardware flash tools.  

I used Linux for several years. I was a full fledged zealot and everything. I switched back to Windows a few years ago for software compatibility. (mainly games and some CGI software that I used to use) I understand the desire to use Linux and to be rid of Windows. I actually took a sword to my Windows 7 installation disc. ūü§£ (like I said, a zealot) However, even excluding game compatibility, I realized somewhere along the way that a lot of proprietary utilities to do very specific things made by small companies will usually only work on Windows. Sometimes you can get Mac compatibility, but Linux is usually out of the question. Linux-based operating systems just don't have enough of a user base to warrant people taking extra steps. And WINE is a crap shoot. Your suggestion of creating a VM running Windows is very smart and would require little effort. The VM could be used for one thing and then deleted. Windows installation media is free these days. You can create a Windows installation drive in Linux, I did it when I switched back to Windows.

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15 hours ago, swlovinist said:

Updated my orginal post but have been given an updated file and hombrew support is getting there!   Here are my findings

 

What is now working on this beta update:

7800 Alpha Race

Armor Attack II

Asteroids Deluxe

Astro Blaster

Astro Fighter

Baby Pac Man

Beef Drop

Blockem Sockem(Using DragonFly Cart)

B*nk

Combat 1990

Crazy Brix(only working with joystick control)

Crazy Otto

Crystal Quest(control with CX 40 only, not working with 2 button)

Donkey Kong PX

Donkey Kong XM

Dungeon Stalker

Fail Safe

Fat Axl

Frenzy

Froggie

K.C. Munchkin

Kessel Attack

Klax

Knight Guy in Low Res World Castle Days

Lava Lamps and 8 Track Theatre

Meteor Shower

Missing in Action(Prototype)

Moon Cresta

Pac Man Collection

Pac Man 40th Anniversary with XM Sound!

Pac Man Jr.

Pineapple

Pit Fighter(Prototype)

Plutos

Popeye

Rip Off

Santa Simon

Scramble

Sentinel

Serpentine

Sirius

Space Duel

Space Invaders Collection

Star Wars(Xevious Hack)

Super Circus Atariage

Super Cobra

Super Pac Man

T:me Salvo

Tubes

Venture

Wasp

Wizards Dungeon

Worm

 

2600 Working

Circus Convoy

Tunnel Runner

 

7800 still not working

8 in 1 Multicarts

Attack of the Petscii Robots

Rikki and Vikki

 

2600 Not Working

Omega Race(controller)

Mountain King

 

When's the museum coming, John Hancock?

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On 12/28/2023 at 4:21 PM, DEANJIMMY said:

I would like to try V1.1ūü§ó

 

I have a Windows laptop and all non working PAL 7800 carts plus some 7800 homebrews ūü§ô

I have 2600 PAL Enduro and Pole Position to test z26 and Mountain King CBS Ram plus...ūüėä

I would also like to try V1.1 if possible. I bought 12 7800 games to use on the 2600+. 

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Hi Ben,

 

Id be happy to test the 1.1 firmware for you. I’ve been a member here for 12 years and have quite a massive list of original 2600 games and a selection of 7800 games.

 

As a job, I help test and roll out mobile software on behalf of salesforce to a fleet of lift engineers across the globe and am used to using various testing scripts.

 

If I don’t get chosen, good luck with future versions and we love what you gifs are doing.

 

Lee

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1 hour ago, Ben from Plaion said:

Yes, I'll send out instructions shortly

Thank you. Looking forward to it.

The 2600+ is the product I have been looking for. I thought R77 would be the one that would give me that cartridge swapping experience that I remember from 1978;) Sadly no. 

Don't get me wrong, the Retron77 is a great way to get the scratch for that Atari itch, but not with cartridge play. It is however a great way to play Atari with Stella on a console on an HD TV, utilizing roms on a SD card.

(That is once you have upgraded the OS to the pure Stella experience)

Anyways, thanks for the work you are putting into the firmware. It is moocho, greatly appreciated!

Edited by Obadiah64
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There's something about tracking down the carts that's sooo much fun too. Even as people look on with bemused eyes. What a nutter they probably think. 

 

But yeah just finding out about new carts and wanting them, trying not to pay the crazy ebay prices... finding hidden gems people don't value that are better than some of the several hundred dollar carts... 

 

It's really made the christmas of 2023 a great one for me. And for anyone who'll listen lol

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On 12/29/2023 at 3:17 AM, JetmanUK said:

I have a 7800 Asteroids cart in the post, it's taking a while to arrive. I'll test it when it does, but I may be on the new firmware by then. 

I'd be interested!  Thanks for checking, if you can.  I'd still be interested to see your results with the new firmware too, since that'll ultimately be where we end up.

 

Thanks!

Edited by Mi1ez
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Hello all, 

 

Thanks for all the offers to try out the 1.1 beta software. More people have offered then I thought so probably best if I just provide the instructions and files here.

 

How to Update

Dumper:

 

With Power Switch off on the 2600+ connect the USB lead from the 2600+ to a Windows Laptop/PC. 

 

TV TYPE lever in B W

 

Hold down GAME SELECT lever and power on the 2600+, You should hear a windows connection jingle from your Laptop/PC

 

Open AtariDumper1.1.0.2.exe, You should see the status as Detected in green text

 

image.png.4368aae169312a8ab7001390e3108968.png

Press Download and it takes about 5 seconds to flash the dumper chip. The status then goes to red not detected and thats it the dumper chip is updated.

 

How to Update

Emulator Part 1:

 

The machine needs to add a driver to your Laptop/PC to talk to the 2600+. You only need to do this once.

 

With Power Switch off on the 2600+ connect the USB lead from the 2600+ to a Windows Laptop/PC. 

 

TV TYPE lever in COLOR

 

Hold down GAME RESET lever and power on the 2600+, You should hear a windows connection jingle from your Laptop/PC

 

Goto Device Manager on your PC and click on the Unknown Device.

image.thumb.png.95dcfc372f0bde19a275ebbe7eec1765.png

 

Browse your PC and click on the DriverAssitant_v5.12 (unzipped) and press Open.

image.thumb.png.1cadfbb5cd3bf93dd2e26079e634b2c1.png

 

A confirmation message should pop up showing a successful driver update. 

image.thumb.png.ae1eecde305fa3a535eaed6b77f06579.png

 

Should take you no more then two minutes to do this.

 

Emulator Part 2:

 

Now for the actual emulator firmware update. 

 

With Power Switch off on the 2600+ connect the USB lead from the 2600+ to a Windows Laptop/PC. 

 

TV TYPE lever in COLOR

 

Hold down GAME RESET lever and power on the 2600+, You should hear a windows connection jingle from your Laptop/PC

 

Open up RKDevTool_Release_v2.74 folder (unzipped) and click on RKDevTool.exe.

image.thumb.png.c8bc894042c9c79107687ffec761ac6c.png

 

You should see the application window open and a status message of 'Found one MASKROM device'.

image.thumb.png.7d4b8365291b26704123a9d1a8f1e41e.png

 

Press the tab Upgrade Firmware.

image.thumb.png.768d83ae0320428c7097104d74481341.png

 

Press the Firmware button.

image.thumb.png.90040c339790263fc556c3e2ac77f558.png

 

Find Update-1225.img and press Open.

image.thumb.png.1fbf52f8fb42700a943499559ede8ace.png

 

You should see the IMG prepped in the window. Press Upgrade.

image.thumb.png.904bc44a52ec10cf824f1f25f69bac40.png

 

The update uploads in about 30 seconds. The whole process should again take about 2 minutes.

 

And thats everything done. Time to plug your carts in! 

 

John Hancock has already provided a list of working 7800 homebrews, so unless you just want to play those games for fun I'm more interested in receiving feedback for games he didnt test and anything else of note.

 

Bear in mind this is a beta and the purpose of offering this out on Atari Age is because of the breadth of cartridges out there that we internally just dont have easy access to - such a massive amount of carts with all their variations. I'm confident that this update will please, but some things may not work still and others havent been looked at like video touch pad, driver controller support as well as 2600 homebrew, a few odd carts and that one tricky official release Pitfall II. But we will as soon as the 1.1 is locked.

 

Thanks Ben

AtariDumper1.1.0.2.exe update-1225.img DriverAssitant_v5.12.zip RKDevTool_Release_v2.74.zip

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I'm assuming this would work with Windows 11?

 

It's not working with Windows 11 under Parallels on a Mac. It can see the console when trying to install the drivers under "Emulator Part 1", but it can't find any compatible drivers.

 

Just thought I'd mention this in case anyone else was wondering, but I do realise this isn't the primary intention of releasing the beta, so I'm not expecting this to be addressed as an issue!

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Thanks @Ben from Plaion for sharing the 1.1 beta!

 

1.1 beta initial feedback...  all NTSC...

 

GOOD:

2600 Omega Race works (minus booster grip, which renders the game unplayable)

2600 Circus Convoy works (VERY COOL!)

7800 Asteroids didn't have the phantom hyperspace happen for me anymore but need more playtime to be sure.

 

BAD/NO CHANGE:

2600 Robot Tank still not working (no difference from 1.00, screen scrolls)

2600 Spike's Peak not working (no difference from 1.00, game loads and starts but joystick is not working)

2600 Burgertime not working (no difference from 1.00)

2600 Masters Of The Universe not working (no difference from 1.00)

2600 white shelled Coleco Donkey Kong Junior not working (no difference from 1.00, this is the issue discovered where many different Coleco games are not working if they have a specific circuit board)

2600 Super Breakout (no difference from 1.00, still has jumpy/coarse paddle control)

 

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Update installed fine and tested the following so far

 

PAL 2600 TITLES

Pole Position - track now the grey colour

Pac Man - I think the ghosts look easier to identify when you can eat them now...

Battlezone - Only just got it but I remember people saying the colours were dark, the new palette fixes that fine.

 

PAL 7800 

Pole Position II - fire buttons now swapped round the correct way so you can play it with the one fire button to accelerate

 

Thanks to Ben and all the people who have put so much time and effort in to this beta so far!

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38 minutes ago, infinite.pies said:

I'm assuming this would work with Windows 11?

I am running Windows 11, V.23H2.  Everything worked great, exactly as outlined in Ben's detailed instructions.  The entire process took less than 8 or 10 minutes from beginning to end.  Now when I see the Atari fuji, instead of V1.0, it instead says V1.1, Stella 6.7

 

I popped in 7800 Pole Position II.  It worked great with the stock CX-40+ joystick; the accelerator is now tied correctly to the lone fire button.

 

I then tried 2600 Asteroids; I can verify that the Difficulty Switches are now correct, and Position A (as labelled) causes the saucers to appear.

 

I also hoped that Robot Tank and BurgerTime might be working now, but they are the same as before - Robot Tank has a badly rolling screen and BurgerTime generates a bunch of color vertical bars.

 

Thanks to Ben for making this update available!

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Ok, my computer showed the device as an Evercade Handheld.  I'm assuming this is because they use the same chipset.  Once I figured that out, the update process went smoothly.

 

It's cool to see Circus Convoy working. 

 

Neither Rampage (7800) or Double Dragon (7800) work.  For Rampage, I get audio and a scrambled screen.  For DD, nothing (black screen).  They both have been repeatedly cleaned and work on my 7800.

 

 

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15 minutes ago, chad5200 said:

 BAD/NO CHANGE:

2600 Robot Tank still not working (no difference from 1.00, screen scrolls)

2600 Spike's Peak not working (no difference from 1.00, game loads and starts but joystick is not working)

2600 Burgertime not working (no difference from 1.00)

2600 Masters Of The Universe not working (no difference from 1.00)

2600 white shelled Coleco Donkey Kong Junior not working (no difference from 1.00, this is the issue discovered where many different Coleco games are not working if they have a specific circuit board)

2600 Super Breakout (no difference from 1.00, still has jumpy/coarse paddle control)

 

Most of these carts are on the way to the developer at the moment for a fix

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I attempted this update on two Windows 10 machines, and I could not get past step 1.  On both machines, the Dumper update utility refused to recognize the 2600+.  Does this utility require Windows 11 to function properly? 

 

Update:  The Dumper utility would only recognize the 2600+ when it was plugged into a USB 2.0 port.  It would not recognize it when plugged into a USB 3.0 port.  So, I was indeed able to get past step 1.

Edited by Handy DG
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1 minute ago, Handy DG said:

I attempted this update on two Windows 10 machines, and I could not get past step 1.  On both machines, the Dumper update utility refused to recognize the 2600+.  Does this utility require Windows 11 to function properly? 

Worked on Windows 10 64bit.

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