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Dan 7.1

6502 in 2009

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I've heard that systems like that are available all over the developing world, particularly in Africa and the poorer parts of India. I'm guessing that the main apeal of these machines is "free" (as in pirated) software since it really ought to be possible to make much more powerful systems at the same price point.

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I bought a similar system when I worked in China. The key selling point was indeed that it came with a bunch of pirated software - one cartridge was advertised as containing 50,000 games. But what was really interesting was that most of the games were pirated games edited with a sprite editor to insert other copyrighted content. Thus, the "Pokémon" game was really the 8-bit NES version of Donkey Kong, with a crudely drawn Pikachu in place of Mario. Unfortunately, some 10% of the 50,000 games were all versions of Donkey Kong with a different character edited in for Mario - thus Sonic quickly lost its appeal, as well.

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This thing is known in other circles as a "NOAC" device, which stands for Nintendo on a Chip. It's also known as an FC Computer, or FamiClone since it's a clone of the Nintendo Famicom. These are quite common, but for almost $50 you're getting ripped off. Yes, it's a pirate device, and no it's not really a computer and has no computer like functions unless you have the Famicom Basic cartridge. On the Benheck.com forums which I frequent people like to use these and gut the parts out to make a portable Nintendo.

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I oonce had a pirate NES clone, stuffed into an n64 controller case. It's million games were really just 100's of unedited copies of the same games.

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but for almost $50 you're getting ripped off.
Agreed - except that part proceeds go towards the Playpower project, which is developing educational software and hardware for this platform. Plus you have to factor in shipping to the US, if you can even find one online.

 

Still, next time I'm in India I plan to pick up a handful of these for hacking porpoises.

 

has no computer like functions unless you have the Famicom Basic cartridge.

BASIC (in English) and a GUI (in Chinese) are included

 

it really ought to be possible to make much more powerful systems at the same price point.

If you can deliver anything for US$12 with video out, a keyboard, cart slot and bundled controllers, even with 3rd world labour and free IP, I will congratulate you.

 

I'm buying one - will tell you all how it turns out.

 

Awesome - I look forward to your report.

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All of the patents on the original NES have expired, worldwide. It is now 100% legal to clone an NES. The *ROMs*, however, still fall under copyright. But making a piece of hardware that can play NES games is perfectly legal now. (I remember reading about the patents expiring recently, in '07 or '08, IIRC. I know they expired in some countries before others as well, so NES clones became legal some places before others.)

 

edit: Indeed, here is one that is for sale throughout the US: Generation NEX. I've seen it at multiple local game shops.

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Indeed, here is one that is for sale throughout the US: Generation NEX. I've seen it at multiple local game shops.

 

Beware the Gen NEX; I believe the company's compatibility list misrepresents its true capabilities.

The Famicom slot is cool, but since I have yet to embark upon my PowerBook 550 / Famicom cartridge round-up in Japan, it's fairly useless.

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