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5200 with very odd keypad / fire button issues

I've done a video on something similar to this but here is a rundown on what I was encountering: A 5200 sent in for services had a note stating that top fire button wouldn't work on the console. This is an issue I've run into before and in fact have created a video on it. It can be due to the controller having a broken trace of course on the flex circuit inside it. But... it can also very well be due to a faulty 4052 MUX chip inside the console located at U13 or A13 depending on the age of

Not all consoles are stock that I work on...

As part of a large project I've been working on for over a month now, one of the situations I encounter is when a console is sent in for services that has already had another tech's hands inside it. In most cases, it might be simple repairs like replacing an IC chip or some capacitors. But now and again, I get a console sent to me that I don't always know what to expect. In those cases, there can be undesired surprises waiting for me. Here is a 2600 that I would like to show as an example of wha

A 7800 that would only play 7800 games...?

I'm not going to provide a ton of pics on this one because it just isn't needed. But I had been fighting with a 7800 that I've been servicing for a total of just over 12 hours in trying to figure out why it would only play 7800 games? If you put in a 2600 game, it would only give a black screen and not much else. If I put in my Plus+ cart, I could barely make out the plus cart logo on the screen as it would flicker all over. This told me that the 7800 was in fact switching over to 2600

Lotus Esprit Turbo Challenge (Atari ST)

After all the life changes happening as of late I finally managed to sit down and play a video game on real hardware.  I decided to hook up my STe and the game I picked to play was Lotus Turbo Challenge.  Granted I have not seen this game since the Genesis days so it was nice to see it again.   The first thing I noticed were the graphics. To me they seemed to be better than those on the Genesis but on par with those IBM PCs equipped with EGA graphics adapters.  Those were the good ol'


YARS: RECHARGED (VCS) Published 2022 (Atari) Developer: Adamvision Studios, Sneakybox Retail: $9.99 YARS: RECHARGED is a modern take on Yars' Revenge, the 1982 smash hit for the Atari 2600.  Programmed by the incomparable Howard Scott Warshaw, Yars’ Revenge went on to become the best-selling original title for the platform.  This is quite a legacy to live up to. YARS: RECHARGED is available on multiple platforms, including VCS, Switch, XBOX Series X/S, XBOX One, PS4, PS5

Quick update on the ITC

Just wanted to give those that might be curious, an idea on part of what my project has been lately that has taken up much of my time as of late. These photos show 13 different 2600s that I recently serviced and installed UAVs into along with all the needed AV jacks installed as required by the client. An no...these do NOT have two sets of audio outputs. The red/white on the left rear next to the 4-pin s-video mini din, is actually separate chroma/luma connections. This is handy for co

Installing a UAV into a heavy sixer

The process to install the UAV into a heavy or light sixer is pretty well known and documented. In summary you basically set the jumpers on the UAV for the 2600 setup and then solder a socket ontop of the 4050 IC chip and header pins into the UAV and plug it into the socket. Job done...  However, there is a caveat to this method that doesn't become apparently until you find yourself moving consoles around a lot. And when I mean moving the consoles, I mean as in them being packed up, stacked

Gamebox Systems GBHD consolizer kit:- Playing Gameboy - Gameboy Advance games on a big screen!

I bought this kit a few months back as a pre-order and had to wait since I wanted a different colored shell. But the kit allows you to use a donor GBA mainboard from a standard GBA and essentially turn it into a small console to play your games on a modern big screen display using an SNES controller. Here are thoughts on this: The small ribbon cable that has to be soldered to the GBA CPU is tricky and requires a lot of patience to get soldered into place. The pitch of the soldering is quite

ITC Temporarily Suspending Services to the Public

So as the title states, I'm temporarily suspending my console services for repairs, refurbs, and upgrades until about the fall timeframe. This is to ensure I have plenty of time to work on a large project that has a strict timeline. Anyone that has already sent their systems to me will still receive their service requests and will take priority to get them done quickly. But for others, I'd rather hold off and have them wait because I'm not comfortable with my client's systems sitting at the ITC

Magneto Bugs (A8 Game)

Magneto Bugs is a one player, dot munching, maze game.  The objective of the game is to get as many of the white dots as possible while avoiding the bugs in the maze.  As you move you leave behind red dots that can attract the bugs.  This game is played with a joystick controller. I have spent my weekend trying out this game along with two others I picked up.  I kept coming back to this one.  While it might look like a Pac-Man clone it is far from that game.  The back of the package me

Star Raiders (360/PS3/Windows)

Oh man.  Where to start?  I reckon I should start at the beginning.  Star Raiders, as any Atari gamer would know, is the iconic first-person space action adventure game published by Atari in 1979 on their Atari 8-bit home computers and later porting it over to the 5200 and 2600 game consoles.  It is the game that defined that genre which others would follow.  Star Raiders II (the published one and the one that did not get released) took the basics and attempted to improve on them.  Solaris for t

My Summer Decided

I believe I have my summer gaming all figured out.  I plan to participate heavily in the forum's Pizza Party with what games I do have PLUS it will be nice to revisit Zelda again...a game I have not played in decades. Just tonight Microsoft, for whatever reason, gave me a $5.00 gift card on my account.  I wondered what $5 could do and browse the 360 game store first to see if there was anything of interest there.  My nephew informed me of 360 games that were now free including Crackdown 2,

First Steps

Hello and welcome for my first blog entry. I am going to discuss the rpgs I am currently playing and the progress I am making. Don't expect and complete walkthroughs or detailed step by step descriptions. I want to keep things a little more casual than that, and besides I'm not that good of a chronicler. The last thing I want to do is keep constant notes of every step of the process. I will also do reviews here including games that I have already finished. So, what am I focusing on at the moment

The First Co-Op Video Game?

I probably know what you are thinking.  Let me try to guess.  It's probably the first online multiplayer video game.  It's most likely on a computer of some sort.  It was either on disc, disk, or placed in an obscure place making it hard for people to find.  Am I close?  To answer those: no, no, and no.  And this game might be closer than you realize. Long story short my nephew and I decided to play a game together.  The problem was that he wanted to play split a screen on XBOX.  I wanted t

Decision In The Desert (A8)

When it comes to Microprose games I immediately think of those 386 PC days when I spent countless hours on Railroad Tycoon, Covert Action, and Lightspeed.  I never knew that Microprose really started with the C64 and Atari computers making tons of WWII based simulation/strategy games that I missed.  So I started collecting just Microprose games for my XEGS.  Today I write about one of those games called Decision In The Desert. I'm not familiar with any of Microprose Commander Series games. 

MY RETRO GAMING CORNER officially complete ! 😎🤟🧐

I consider my RETRO GAMING CORNER officially complete ! 😎🤟🧐includes 14inch TOSHIBA CRT / ColecoVision w/ AtariMax Flashcart / Retrobit SuperRetroTrio (nes, snes, genesis w/ Everdrives for each) / TG-16 w/Everdrive 😎👍as well, I can hook up the 2600 module to ColecoVision or even play Master System using the Everdrive on the RetroTrio. Happy covering 7 platforms with 3 consoles. Wanted to cover as many platforms with what I already have in the space I am limited to.  


Tonight I thought I would research applications in attempts of finding anything to allow writing programs for the Atari ST.  I do enjoy writing small programs every now and then.  I turned to some magazines to see what turned up before having to turn to Google.  Doing a Google searched turned up a recommendation for an app called Tempus.  The only one I have on hand is version 1.10 but there are other versions out there. What grab my interest right off the bat were the file types it support

ST Virus (Not a Review)

I thought about making this just a standard forum post but decided instead to make it a blog post.  This way I have a document on my findings while learning more about the ST.  And now...the rest of the story (I miss Paul Harvey). I was doing research trying to find out if Konami actually went through with releasing some games on the ST computers.  One issue of ST Action mentioned it but the next issue that was to continue the story was missing.  My research turned up something more and I l

Bombjack (ST Review)

Bombjack on the ST kind of reminds me of Bomberman Jack on the NES.  Whether they are one in the same or just share similar qualities I can't say but the arcade style game play is fun.  I was only able to accomplish a few rounds because, for me, the controls were wonky which I will get to in a minute. The graphics are arcade like as are the controls and sounds however the background music gets repetitive pretty quick.  Thankfully the developers were kind enough to give the player an option

F1 (Atari ST)

This review will be short because this is Vroom's younger brother.  If you haven't read it already I would suggest going and reading my review of Vroom, then come back here. F1 has new tracks and a few new menu items.  Missing is the lap timer.  It no longer tracks your lap times.  Tracks include Monaco, Spain, and many more that are part of the F1 World Championship...in 1993, making this an official FIA licensed game.  The animation is still as smooth as Vroom, sounds are the same, cars a

Hot Wheels (ST Review)

When I saw the name Hot Wheels pop up in the tons of ST images I found I thought, "Cool!  Hot Wheels has a racing game on the ST".  So I thought I would try it out.  Then the title screen appeared. Not the Hot Wheels I was expecting but looks good at least.  I grabbed the controller and tried it out.  It's another top down racer and it doesn't look half bad but it is a bit jittery.  And it has tons of settings you can perform.  But don't take my word for it...see for yourself

ST Conclusion (So Far)

I have tried many games.  Some with great success, some with not so great results.  Overall I have come to a conclusion on how I see the ST computers.  Close to the end of the ST production run I was heavy into the 386 computer scene.  Good old' MS-DOS commercial and shareware games kept my time occupied.  I never knew nor heard about Atari making ST computers at all.  Atari simply didn't exist. In hindsight that was a good thing.  I managed to learn the IBM PC side of computing.  Games I h

VROOM! Literally

While going through some ST game images I came across the words "Vroom".  No explanation. I have already seen some weird games on the ST so far so why not.  Couldn't be any worse than some I've tried so far, right?  In goes a blank disk, on it goes Vroom which I assumed was some sort of racing game with motorcycles.  Disk done and to the ST I go.  Insert disk, power on. Once I saw the title screen and heard the music my spidey senses started going off.  What did I just feed my ST?  Where di
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