Connect a PC to a Commodore 1541/1571 drive

Did you ever want to transfer files from your old Commodore 1541/1571 drive between your computer and a real drive? Did you also want to use a real Commodore floppy drive with the VICE emulator? Me too! πŸ˜‰ Both of these things are possible with the zoomfloppy device being offered by Retro Innovations. You can download basically anything you want from arnold.c64.org (or any other commodore software source) and transfer it right to your floppy device so it can be used on a real Commodore 64 or Vic 20.

This device is unlike other solutions that only worked with specially built cables and DOS. You simply plug a USB cable between your zoomfloppy and your computer and then the serial cable between the zoomfloppy and the floppy drive. Once the physical connections are made, you simply run the OpenCBM software to transfer files or backup disks.
Here’s how to install a zoomfloppy device to your Ubuntu computer.

sudo apt-get install libusb-dev build-essential linux-headers-generic git

Install the CC64 Compiler:

cd ~
git clone https://github.com/cc65/cc65.git
cd cc65
make
sudo prefix=/usr make install

Compile and install OpenCBM

cd ~
git clone git://git.code.sf.net/p/opencbm/code opencbm
cd opencbm/opencbm
make -f LINUX/Makefile
sudo make -f LINUX/Makefile install install-all install-plugin-xum1541
sudo ln -s /usr/local/lib/libopencbm.so.0 /usr/lib/libopencbm.so.0

Add udev rules for the ZoomFloppy hardware itself:

sudo pico /etc/udev/rules.d/45-opencbm-parallel.rules

Add this to the bottom of the file, then save and quit:

SUBSYSTEM!="usb_device", ACTION!="add", MODE="0666", GOTO="opencbm_rules_end"
# zoom floppy
ATTRS{idVendor}=="16d0", ATTRS{idProduct}=="0504", GROUP="users", MODE="0666"
LABEL="opencbm_rules_end"

Restart udev:

sudo service udev restart

Check the ZoomFloppy and IEC device status:

cbmctrl detect

Bonus: Get VICE to use the zoomfloppy interface to utilize a real 1541 Commodore Floppy Drive!

1. Settings -> Peripheral Settings -> Device #8 -> Enable IEC Device
2. Settings -> Peripheral Settings -> Device #8 -> Device Type -> Real Device Access

8bitdo Sega Genesis Receiver Review

8bitdo Sega Genesis Receiver Review

The 8bitdo Genesis Receiver allows your Sega Genesis or Mega Drive to use a modern gamepad such as the PS4, PS3, XBox or Wii U (pictured) as well as a wide assortment of Bluetooth controllers. Also pictured on the right is another device used in a similar way for devices that accept USB such as the Nintendo Switch, the Mini Playstation, PCs, etc.

Podcast:

Youtube video:

Install Sony Playstation Now (PS Now) on Ubuntu

I’m always looking at ways to play video games on Ubuntu Linux. This one is a doozy. With Playstation Now, you can play over 700 real PS2, PS3 and PS4 games on your Ubuntu computer. The technology uses streaming from remote server where the gaming console exists. Sony typically will give you a couple weeks as a free trial though the deals vary. I was able to take advantage of a Black Friday sale with one full year of PS Now for only $70. Fantastic deal.

Here’s how to install PS Now on Ubuntu:

First install wine if it’s not already installed. Wine is a Linux program that helps us run Windows programs on the Linux platform.

sudo apt install wine-stable

Next, download winetricks into your downloads folder.

cd "${HOME}/Downloads"
wget  https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Winetricks/winetricks/master/src/winetricks
chmod +x winetricks

Now install some Windows apps with winetricks.

./winetricks corefonts
./winetricks vulkansdk
./winetricks dxvk
./winetricks vcrun2013

Now we are going to install Lutris, which is a program that helps you install games and other apps on your Wine Windows installation.

sudo apt-get install lutris

Once you find Lutris in your application menu and launch it.
Now visit the Lutris website and launch the PS Now installer.
https://lutris.net/games/playstation-now/
After you select ‘install’ you will see a Playstation Now icon in the Lutris application.

Here’s where I ran into trouble with this installation Mind you, I figured all this out by using directions cobbled together from many broken install methods I found on the web! When I tried to launch PS Now from Lutris, I was met with a message that said, “Vulkan is not installed” even though I installed it with winetricks (above).

Here’s the fix:

Right-click on the Playstation Now icon in Lutris.
Select “configure”.
Select the “runner options” tab.
Turn “Enable DXVK” off.
Save and relaunch. After poking on a couple dialog boxes, you should be good to go!

Sega Master System

Image result for sega master systemIf you are unfamiliar with the 8-Bit Sega Master System, the game system that Sega sold before the 16-Bit Sega Genesis – you are in for a treat. This third generation video game system debuted in 1985 in Japan as the Sega Mark III.Β  The name wasn’t very well revived so when it debuted in 1986 in North America, it was relabeled the Master System.Β The system competed with the Nintendo NES, which debuted a year earlier. In Japan and North America, the system was far less popular than it was in Europe and Brazil. The incredibly popular Sega Genesis followed in the market two years later, making the Master System a footnote outside of Europe and Brazil. Despite this, many great games were created. I put together a list of the best games, though there are many more. If you are interested in checking out what the system offered, check out the titles below. Also, just for fun check out this embeded youtube video with 25 popular Master System titles.

A Sega Master System console will run you around $50 on ebay. Just like any other retro game system, the game cartridges can run anywhere from $10 to $300 depending on the rarity, condition, desirability, and completeness (box, manual, etc.)

If you have a gen 1 or gen 2 Sega Genesis, you can use a “power base converter” (which ranges between $50-100 on ebay) to play Sega Master System games.

Another option is to buy a Mega EverDrive X7, which will allow you to load up Master System, 32X and Genesis cartridge roms. Don’t ask me for roms or where to find them!

Another interesting option is to emulate the system with a Raspberry Pi using RetroPie. There are plenty of youtube videos around to show you how to do this. Essentially, you are going to install an OS image onto a micro SD card, put it in your Raspberry Pi, then install your rom images to the rom directory. This is a great option and highly encourage!

Good luck and happy gaming!

Sega Master SystemGamegear portGenreMore Information
Alex Kidd in Miracle WorldPlatformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Kidd_in_Miracle_World
Alien SyndromeRun & gun shooterhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alien_Syndrome
Asterix2D action platformerhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asterix_(1991_video_game)
Astro Warriors
Shoot 'em uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astro_Warrior
Ayrton Senna's Super Monaco GP 2
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayrton_Senna%27s_Super_Monaco_GP_II
Baku Baku Animal
Puzzle gamehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baku_Baku_Animal
Bubble Bobble
βœ“Comical action platformerhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bubble_Bobble
Buggy Run
Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buggy_Run
California Games
Sportshttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Games
Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_of_Illusion_Starring_Mickey_Mouse
Choplifterβœ“Actionhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choplifter
Chuck Rock 2: Son of Chuckβœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_Rock_II:_Son_of_Chuck
Columns
βœ“Puzzlehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Columns_(video_game)
Cool Spot
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cool_Spot
Deep Duck Trouble Starring Donald Duck
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deep_Duck_Trouble_Starring_Donald_Duck
Desert Strike
βœ“Shoot 'em uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desert_Strike
Double Dragon
βœ“Beat-'em-uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Dragon
Dr Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine
βœ“Falling block puzzlehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dr._Robotnik%27s_Mean_Bean_Machine
Dynamite Dux
Beat-'em-uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamite_DΓΌx
Dynamite Headdy
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamite_Headdy
Earthworm Jim
Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earthworm_Jim
Ecco the Dolphin
βœ“Action-adventurehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecco_the_Dolphin
Ecco: Tides of Time
βœ“Action-adventurehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecco:_The_Tides_of_Time
F1
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F1_(video_game)
Fantasy Zone
βœ“Horizontally scrolling shoot 'em uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fantasy_Zone
Fantasy Zone 2: The Tears of Opa-Opa
Horizontally scrolling shoot 'em uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fantasy_Zone_II:_The_Tears_of_Opa-Opa
Ghouls 'n' Ghosts
Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ghouls_%27n_Ghosts
G-LOC: Air Battle
βœ“Arcade, Combat flight simulatorhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G-LOC:_Air_Battle
Golden Axe Warrior
Action-adventurehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Axe_Warrior
Golvellius: Valley of Doom
Role-playing gamehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golvellius
GP Rider
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GP_Rider
Hang-On
Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hang-On
Impossible Mission
Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impossible_Mission
James Pond 2: Codename Robocod
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Pond_2
Land of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Land_of_Illusion_Starring_Mickey_Mouse
Legend of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legend_of_Illusion_Starring_Mickey_Mouse
Marble Madness
βœ“Platform, Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marble_Madness
Master of Darkness
βœ“2D action platformerhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master_of_Darkness
Micro Machines
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micro_Machines_(video_game_series)
Ninja Gaiden
βœ“Action-adventure, hack and slashhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninja_Gaiden
Operation Wolf
Shooting galleryhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Wolf
OutRun
βœ“Arcade racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Out_Run
OutRun Europa
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Out_Run_Europa
Phantasy Star
βœ“ (Phantasy Star Adventure & Phantasy Star Gaiden)Role-playing gamehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phantasy_Star
Power Strike II
βœ“ (GG Aleste II: Lance Bird)Vertically scrolling shoot 'em uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power_Strike
Prince of Persia
Cinematic platformer
Action-adventure
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_of_Persia
Psycho Fox
2D action Platformerhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psycho_Fox
Quartet
2D action platformerhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quartet_(video_game)
Rainbow Islands
Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rainbow_Islands:_The_Story_of_Bubble_Bobble_2
Rampage
Actionhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rampage_(video_game)
Road Rash
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Road_Rash
R-Type
Side scrolling shoot-em-uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R-Type
Sensible Soccer
βœ“Sportshttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sensible_Soccer
Shinobi
βœ“Platform, hack and slashhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shinobi_(video_game)
Smash TV (Super Smash TV)
βœ“Multidirectional shooterhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smash_TV
Sonic Chaos
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonic_Chaos
Sonic Spinball
βœ“Action, Pinballhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonic_Spinball
Sonic the Hedgehog
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonic_the_Hedgehog
Sonic the Hedgehog 2
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonic_the_Hedgehog_2
Special Criminal Investigation
Racing, Actionhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special_Criminal_Investigation
Streets of Rage 2
βœ“Beat 'em uphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streets_of_Rage_2
Strider
βœ“ (Sequel as Strider II)Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strider_(arcade_game)
Super Monaco GP
βœ“First-person racing/Racing simulationhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Monaco_GP
Super Off Road
βœ“Racinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Off_Road
The Lion King
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lion_King_(video_game)
The Lucky Dime Caper Starring Donald Duck
βœ“Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucky_Dime_Caper
The New Zealand Story
Platformhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_NewZealand_Story
Thunder Blade
Scrolling shooter
Third-person rail shooter
Combat flight simulator
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thunder_Blade
Virtua Fighter Animation
βœ“Versus Fightinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtua_Fighter_Animation
Wonder Boy in Monster Worldβœ“ (Monster World II: Dragon no Wana)Platform/Action-adventure, Metroidvaniahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wonder_Boy_in_Monster_World
Ys: The Vanished OmensAction Role Playinghttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ys_I:_Ancient_Ys_Vanished
ZillionPlatform, action-adventurehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zillion_(video_game)

Gaming on the Raspberian Stretch Desktop

It really surprises me that there isn’t a Raspberry Pi gaming scene. I’m not talking about emulation. I’m talking about games that run native on the Pi in Raspbian. Old machines like the Atari 2600, Colecovision, ZX Spectrum and the Commodore 64 have an embarrassing wealth of new games coming out all the time. The Vic 20 still gets releases for God’s sake! So where is the love when it comes to our tiny Pi friend, which is much, much more capable?

Here’s a small list of games you can run on the Stretch Desktop. There are more but these seem to be the most popular. Let me know if you have any favorites you want added to the list!

For the 3D games, a Raspberry Pi 3 B+ is highly recommended!

Battleball – a 3D Tank arcade
sudo apt-get install battleball

Flare – Diablo-like RPG
sudo apt-get install flare-game

Freesweep – a console based Minesweeper
sudo apt-get install freesweep

Funny Boat – funny arcade game
sudo apt-get install funnyboat

Gnome Nibbles – a snake game
sudo apt-get install gnome-nibbles

Quake 3
-> Setup:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install quake3
game-data-packager quake3 -i

MinecraftΒ Pi editionΒ 

Open Arena – open source version of Quake with different maps
sudo apt-get install openarena

OpenTTD – based upon Transport Tycoon Deluxe sudo apt-get install openttd

TINT – a Tetris game
sudo apt-get install tint