First things first, I don’t want this thread to be about piracy-talk. At the contrary, I’d like this thread to be a tool for anyone who’d like to tackle emulation with their own games. In many, if not all emulation threads there is the infamous piracy talks/accusations that fly off everywhere and essentially derails the main topic to being what could most probably be an avoidable debate. Off course, piracy is a thing, it exists and there’s not much to do about it, especially with the consoles related to this thread. My point is that all ROMs are easy to find on the internet if you want one, this thread is for emulation enthusiasts and newcomers who are looking for tools to build a ROM library they can feel entitled to play on any device of their choice because the file comes from a physical good they own. It is also very useful for preservation purposes as we’re seeing more and more cases of disc rotting, save batteries dying.
So this thread will cover pretty much all of my knowledge about how obtain the precious files from your cartridges/CDs/DVD to be able to play it on the device/emulators of your choice. I learned a lot since I started to collect video games and many times I shared the most I could in my previous thread but I thought that doing a main, overall go-to thread would be a fine idea as well. As I said, this covers my knowledge but I’m not perfect, while I try to explain everything as simply as possible, I welcome any additional inputs and methods you guys will offer and gladly add these to the OP.
Here we go!
NINTENDO ENTERTAINMENT SYSTEM
Ripping NES cartridges can be quite a difficult process, but rewarding in the end once you nail it. I made a thread and a tutorial about how to use the Kazzo, the device I used to rip my NES library. I’ll just take the text for there and quote it here.
I always was an emulation enthusiast and when I heard this thing existed a few weeks ago, I ordered one instantly! I always wanted a way to be able to rip our NES cartriges. I have a Retrode+Plug-ins for SNES/GEN/N64/GB and I was kind of losing hope for everything NES-wise because I heard the only way to rip an actual cartridge was to possess a copyNES, which is a NES modded with an USB port in the back and those are quite rare nowadays.
But now this problem is gone because we have the Kazzo NES Dumper-Programmer (but I’ll only be talking about the dumper part here.) and it is quite cheap for a minimum of 20$ (without shipping) for the device equipped with the 72-pin input, add 5$ and you’ll have a FC input, another 5$ and it’s an extra SNES input (though this one seems to be mostly for programming.). The Retrode alone is something around 75$ so the Kazzo, while it’s a bare bone board, is quite cheaper and does the job quite well.
Since ripping NES games with this thing (Well, ripping NES games itself never was an easy task.) ain’t so easy and I needed quite a bit of time yesterday to learn how to use it. I decided to make a tutorial for it since there doesn’t seems to be any on the whole internet, so it’ll make life easier for everyone that’s interested I guess.
Really, because if you don’t have this you won’t be able to do much since it’s not included with the device. You’ll need an A/B USB cable. Buy it while you’re waiting for the thing to reach your mailbox, you’ll be salty if you’re last minute.
You got your Kazzo, prepare your body for a long session of ripping and make sure the switch on the board is at RUN and not BL.
You’ll need the firmware/software package: Click here for download.
Plug your Kazzo in your PC (it won’t recognize at first, it’s totally normal) and start this file that will install the necessary drivers for your PC to recognize it. You’re supposed to see the Kazzo in the plugged device list and you only have to choose it and click ‘next’.
Now that it’s done, the Kazzo doesn’t work like the Retrode. It won’t get recognized as an external hard drive to only copy/paste the ROMs out of it. You have to run this program right here (anago_WX)
Equip your Kazzo with one of your favorite games, let’s say…Mega Man V!
The thing with NES games is that many of them are programmed differently and have different sets of chips that are in those. So you have to know which games have which scripts. At first I was going the try/error way but I found a complete list which is perfect.
So all you need to do is to find your game in this list and choose it’s corresponding script in anago_wx. Then all you need to do is to choose the folder where you want your ROM to be and give it a name.
Rip dat ROM mah man.
After this all you need to do is to test it with an emulator of your choice. If it doesn’t work, try to clean your cartridge’s contacts with a Q-tips and alcohol, it makes all the difference, even if it looks clean, count on me.
If all seems to work fine, rinse and repeat for all your other games!
Enjoy having your own library of digital NES games, you can now play those on your PC, smartphone, Ouya or modded console in the most legit way and in the best image quality possible!
Thanks to everyone at Infiniteneslives for making this possible! Here’s where you can buy it: http://www.infiniteneslives.com/aux3.php
SUPER NINTENDO/GENESIS/GAME BOY (COLOR/ADVANCE)/ NINTENDO 64
Now with a device that cover a lot of cartridge based consoles. The Retrode.
The Retrode basically allows you to rip both SNES and GEN cartridges, but later after its creation, add-ons for GB, SMS and N64 were developed for it. I only own the GB/N64 ones though. Here a few show of the thing and what it looks like with cartriges and add-ons snapped on it.
It works quite simply: All you have to do is to snap your cartridge in it, plug it in your computer via a Micro USB cable and take the ROM file from the Retrode as if you were taking a file from a USB dongle.
The Retrode also have GEN/SNES controller ports directly on it so you can play your freshly ripped games with the original contoller right away. The N64 add-on also have controller ports for the same purpose.
You can learn everything about it and where to buy the Retrode on https://www.retrode.com/
—GB/GBC Everdrive 64 method—
There is also an alternative to extract GB ROMs if you have the Transfer Pak and a Everdrive 64, you can find the tutorial right here: http://micro-64.com/features/gbromdumping.shtml
(Thanks to Rich! for adding this extra method to the bunch!)
—N64 Action Replay Pro method.—
You can rip N64 ROMs with an Action Replay Pro via its parallel port.
There are only two ways to rip your DC games:
Using a broadband adapter and transfer the disc’s data to your computer via internet. You don’t want to use the default line connection, it’ll go at 40k/sec and it’ll make your Dreamcast work for way too long (24h a game compared to 20 minutes with the BBA.).
-You’ll have to use a program httpd-ack (Click here to download) and burn the CDI file on a CD-ROM
-Burn the selfbooting .cdi
-Use the Broadband Passport disc (or any similar) to configure a STATIC IP address to your Dreamcast. No need to configure DNS, Gateway and stuff like that.
-Connect Dreamcast to the PC. If connection is not through router (ie if cable from Dreamcast goes directly to LAN port of PC), use a crossover cable.
-Fire up httpd-ack on your Dreamcast. If everything went fine, it will come to rest on a simple screen with some green text on black screen. At this point, remove the httpd-ack disc and replace with GD-ROM you want to dump.
-Fire up a web browser on the PC and at the address bar type http://XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX where the XXX represent the static IP address you gave to your Dreamcast before. For me it’s 10.0.1.2, but it depends on how you have your network setup.
-Tracks will appear as links on your browser screen. Click them one at a time to download. Don’t attempt to download more than one at a time, this is impossible and httpd-ack won’t allow you to. Of course you can queue 'em up if you like, using any download manager you prefer.
-Wait until everything has downloaded to the PC. Waiting time is about 20-25 mins for a complete GD-ROM.
You will also be able to get the DC_BOOT and DC_FLASH files you need to run NullDC with the BBA method. These are available to take from your console each time you’re ripping a game.
If your download of the disc’s image ends up failing, it probably is because it is damaged at some place, and DC discs are very sensitive, so it can be almost nothing that will make your download crash at the same place, everytime.
There is also the SD card ripping method, with which you will need an SD card adapter that will go in the back of the dreamcast.
Now introduce the SMS4
Not really complicated either, the thing comes with a software you need to install and then use it to extract the .NDS ROM files where you need to.
I think the more difficult thing is to actually find a trustable website to buy it. I found mine there…but don’t hold me responsible if anything happens to you as I took a chance buying from a chinese website like that. http://www.nds-card.com/ProShow.asp?ProID=440
If you have a more trustable source to buy it please let me know and I’ll add it to the OP.
This time I will let GAF handle it, because we already have a very detailed and helpful tutorial for these ones. Please look into this.
As for Gamecube games, after your Wii is homebrewed, you can download Cleanrip which will rip the ISO on your USB dongle just like USB-Loader does.
You can find Cleanrip here: https://code.google.com/archive/p/cleanrip/downloads
Dumping PC Engine/Turbografx-16 Games (Thanks to catabarez for this process!)
First, you need to buy the Tengu PC Engine ROM Dumper. I got mine from:
The purchase includes what is pictured here.
A flash cart to test the ROMs on an actual system
and a USB A to B cable.
Dumping a PC Engine game is very simple. All you need to do is
Connect the Tengu to your computer
Open up the new Removable Disk
Open the"DUMP" application
Name the ROM and choose where you want it to save
After your done, a window will pop-up that looks like this:
Now you can enjoy the game on your emulator of choice.
Dumping Turbografx-16 games is a little more involved, since the dumper cannot auto-detect the US ROMs.
You’ll need to download an application made by the creator of the Tengu. You can find it on his website:
Click the first link called “Tengu Project”, then click through until you see “pce/tg16”, open the folder and download pcelite2.
Open the application and this window will appear.
From here, it’ll be the same process as dumping a PC Engine game; dump the ROM then Save As.
Unfortunately, the ROM it generates will not work with RetroArch (at least that was the case for me). There is just one more step to get a Turbografx ROM to run properly.
In the pcelite2 window, click on “Tools” and this window will appear.
Make sure that “Format to PCE” is selected and click “Conversion”
Now you need to select the Turbografx ROM that you just dumped. It’s going to generate a new ROM, so you can name it something different if you want or just overwrite the old ROM completely.
And that’s it! Now the US ROM should work with RetroArch and even the TurboEverdrive.
To play your precious copy of Rondo of Blood on PC you will need an extra software that specifically rips PC ENGINE games, Turborip. The usual disc image software can’t deal with PCE discs.
You can find Turborip and how it works here: http://www.ysutopia.net/index.php?ind=downloads&op=entry_view&iden=8&down=5
As for these, you can simply get the ISO by placing your disc in your PC’s disc drive and rip the image via X software. As for me I use Imgburn which you can find here: http://www.imgburn.com/index.php?act=download
So that’s it as for what I know, like I said, if you have any idea to add in there, don’t hesitate to post it here and I’ll gladly add it to the OP.
Long live emulation.