I have some bad news for mod chip users, maybe everdrive too?

  1. 03-01-2021, 06:38 AM
    just a reminder with all this "should" talk, the beauty of track creation is we can all have our own opinions and have the tracks for what we want. a track where mods are allowed? cool you can have that. a track where things have to be completely oriiginal even if that means only 2 people can submit on it, cool we can have that too. the only thing track creation doesnt solve is people who wanna tell others how to play and want to remove/change/prevent other tracks.

    we've inheretied a complex system of precedents where things have to be "original" and "original" has its own special definition and exceptions. any new tracks by default inherit the old precedens, however the track can explicilty overwrite any such precedent. problem solved
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  2. 03-01-2021, 06:52 AM
    Yes, that's still just one game. I own every single original variation of Crazy Taxy out there, Dreamcast, Gamecube, Paystation, Xbox and PSP, all those count as one game. And last time when I said this, you said, "this isn't a pissing context, blah, blah, blah". But you make it look like it is, by saying things like "Don't be cheap, invest. If I can do it, anyone can".

    You have said in this post at least 5 times "maybe I just take this too seriously" and that is the absolute truth, you take it too serious and you want the rest of us to do the same.
    It's actually not, it's the same series granted but far from the same game but that's besides the point. I stand by that it certainly isn't a pissing contest at all but if you feel offended by me saying don't be cheap then we can just agree to disagree. If you are willing to put in the time to kick ass at a game then shelling out money for the original game and hardware is the easy part. Again though we can agree to disagree.

    If i take it too seriously then that's a good thing as i have Twin Galaxies best intentions at heart which frankly i feel i do. I am trying to uphold integrity of the scores kept on here which has been a pretty big push in recent times with the introduction of the dispute forum and so on. So I'm certainly doing nothing wrong.

    Call it what you want, apart from my house, videogames is the thing I have spent most money on. My whole life I have bought videogames and I've spent thousands upon thousands of dollars in videogames in 25 years of collecting so I don't feel the least guilty when I download a few games and I play them to submit scores here.
    I call it piracy because that is exactly what it is. Unless you own all the games you download and just use the 'roms' for ease of use in which case ignore my statement. It still doesn't help this issue though and to say because you have bought many other video games in your life it entitles you to steal from other publishers for other games? (again,assuming you don't own the actual game) I'm not trying to start a good old forum argument but that is really bad logic.

    If you don't see how submitting hundreds of scores is helping Twin Galaxies, fine, that's your opinion. LIke I said, I couldn't care less what purists think or say.
    Nope i see submitting as a great thing however, especially if you are doing hundreds as that's a lot of voting you've been doing to obtain those submission points so good on you, props to you for keeping the TG process going. But doing submissions yourself on modded consoles (again assuming, im not saying you do on all of your submissions) or using ROM's isn't helping given what I and others have proven it is only adding to the problem I am trying to get across here.

    Who knows at a later date TG may choose to check old submissions for this issue to uphold integrity of their database. In this case you would be doing yourself a disservice for all the hard work you have put in and also making that job harder in the long run for TG.

    Not saying that will ever happen but you never know.
  3. 03-01-2021, 06:58 AM
    just a reminder with all this "should" talk, the beauty of track creation is we can all have our own opinions and have the tracks for what we want. a track where mods are allowed? cool you can have that. a track where things have to be completely oriiginal even if that means only 2 people can submit on it, cool we can have that too. the only thing track creation doesnt solve is people who wanna tell others how to play and want to remove/change/prevent other tracks.

    we've inheretied a complex system of precedents where things have to be "original" and "original" has its own special definition and exceptions. any new tracks by default inherit the old precedens, however the track can explicilty overwrite any such precedent. problem solved
    I agree and I will clarify I'm talking about tracks which are i guess you could call legacy tracks whereby TG stated (and i believe still do state) that original hardware and original software must be used but controllers i believe were per track rules.

    This is the rule set I've gone by but admittedly i've been off TG for a while so this rule set may be obsolete and if it has changed since please let me know but even if it has this will still apply to those 'legacy' tracks.
    Last edited by rotunda; 03-01-2021 at 07:00 AM.
  4. 03-01-2021, 07:23 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post
    If i take it too seriously then that's a good thing as i have Twin Galaxies best intentions at heart which frankly i feel i do. I am trying to uphold integrity of the scores kept on here which has been a pretty big push in recent times with the introduction of the dispute forum and so on. So I'm certainly doing nothing wrong.
    I absolutely agree with you, I believe you have the best intentions but so do others that don't think like you. I have the best intentions for this site as well but I see nothing wrong with submitting scores on modded consoles.

    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    doing submissions yourself on modded consoles (again assuming, im not saying you do on all of your submissions) or using ROM's isn't helping given what I and others have proven it is only adding to the problem I am trying to get across here.
    If you have proven that there are problems with all modded consoles, why isn't Jace listening to you? doesn't he have the best intentions for his own website?

    I believe there have been problems with "some" submissions before, that doesn't mean it is all because of modding. One could submit by mistake or knowingly a NTSC score to a PAL leaderboard using only original hardware, so to me modding is not the problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    Who knows at a later date TG may choose to check old submissions for this issue to uphold integrity of their database. In this case you would be doing yourself a disservice for all the hard work you have put in and also making that job harder in the long run for TG.

    Not saying that will ever happen but you never know.
    "who knows" and "you never know" are the key phrases here. In my opinion things are not that bad here, and I would much rather find out that there are problems with some submissions and correct them later, than preventing people from submitting based on fear that something is going go wrong in the long run.
    Last edited by Pixe Sukola; 03-01-2021 at 07:26 AM.
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  5. 03-01-2021, 07:33 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post
    Although they are 60hz capable they do not run at correct speeds even on later consoles. if you look back at my posts in this thread I tested Ridge Racer V on a PAL console (running NTSC via FreeMCboot) and a real NTSC console and although the BIOS timer kept the two consoles in sync in terms of the ingame timer the game play speed was slower on PAL as RRV has a time out timer (kind of like a longer check point timer, it was around 7 minutes from memory) for races and i recorded both consoles side by side started at exactly the same time and the real NTSC console displayed the time out notice on screen FAR ahead of the PAL console running NTSC. I looked into it and in this case it is due to the video decoder and not the oscillator crystal like the older consoles. Newer consoles act differently it was too long ago now to remember but they don't depend on the oscillator crystal for in game speed its more down to the video rendering and timing. It's pretty technical which is why i support what i say below...
    I really hadn't picked up on your tests being the NTSC version of RRV running on a PAL console. I had always thought the PAL version of the game running on a PAL region console in 60Hz mode was your basis.

    Yeah, cross-region isn't original for consoles where there's a region lock. I would not expect that to function like-for-like as the games are often re-programmed per region to cater for the difference in refresh rates. For example, there's some PAL 8/16 bit Codemasters games which, at intensive game play times, run slower on NTSC region consoles than the original PAL because the game has been programmed to fit more game logic between vsyncs than there is time between the NTSC vsyncs - when running such a PAL game on the NTSC console the game logic spans two vsyncs making the game run at ~15-20FPS and not the 25FPS on PAL. That said, it's hard to argue that should be happening on your RRV example.
    Lots of 1sts to be surpassed: what are you waiting for? Play the game, submit the score...
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  6. 03-01-2021, 07:59 AM
    If you have proven that there are problems with all modded consoles, why isn't Jace listening to you? doesn't he have the best intentions for his own website?

    I believe there have been problems with "some" submissions before, that doesn't mean it is all because of modding. One could submit by mistake or knowingly a NTSC score to a PAL leaderboard using only original hardware, so to me modding is not the problem.
    Because it's a community decision on what happens regarding this sort of thing, at least thats what i was told back when i originally brought up this issue way back in 2016 with all the evidence to prove it. I spoke to Jace personally about it. Perhaps @Jace Hall can chime in as this may have changed now?

    No modding isn't a problem as such IF you are running correct ROM to the region of hardware in use but there is always the chance someone might not know about this, or download a ROM which has been altered or named incorrectly etc and submit a score unknowingly or worse to gain an advantage and cheat as i can tell from experience a modded PAL console playing NTSC games vs real NTSC console game play is shockingly different and if using direct capture for example you will never notice.

    PAL -> slow
    NTSC on PAL hardware -> faster
    NTSC -> Fast as hell

    You won't notice it unless you know the game mechanics very well for example, I could easily use it on my game of choice to slow the game play down and give myself an advantage with slower game play and as the in game timer for PS1 for lap times is not based on BIOS (real time) times but in game time the clock is off as well so will run slower and match the slower game play so still gives you the perception that the same lap time was achieved but in fact it was done so under much easier gaming conditions.

    It could easily be used to fool people or literally done just by accident. I'm not saying anyone has or will do it, but the chance is there. As mentioned earlier in this thread i nearly fell into this just this past week with a NTSC console i bought which someone had put a mod chip in. I only checked to be sure what repairs it had done to it. Not many people would and I don't know enough about programming or how the mod chip works well enough to know if it would even effect NTSC -> NTSC gaming as from what i understand the chip bombards the CPU constantly with every region code for the PS1 thus allowing the ability to play any region of PS1 game. It also stops the disc copy check at the BIOS so CD-R discs can be used. With this constant overhead on the CPU and the CPU being so slow (vs today's processors) i suspect there might be some effect but I've never tried it as this is the first NTSC console I've ever seen mod chipped.

    Ultimately what I'm saying is it gives a chance of either an accident or foul play, it has been proven and so, do we just let it carry on and hope it doesn't happen or do we do something to prevent it going forward. This is not my decision, its the communities decision. I'm merely bringing what I have found and know to the table so it can be discussed.

    The rules literally contradict themselves in their current state due to my findings so a proper rule needs to be set in place for it.

    This is the current TG policy:

    BELOW ARE THE GLOBAL RULES AND GUIDELINES THAT APPLY TO ALL SUBMISSIONS:

    Unless otherwise specified in a game leaderboard variation rule set, the general rule is that all games are to be played with original hardware, with original game software.

    Console games must be run on official hardware. However, modifications needed to support the use of external storage devices such as the PlayStation 2 HDD, PS2 HD Loader, Everdrive or other mechanisms are considered generally acceptable unless otherwise prohibited by track specific rules, or the discovery and documentation of definitive unfair advantage of use for that game track during an adjudicative score verification process. This section does not apply to PC games, as they have no stock hardware.
  7. 03-01-2021, 08:09 AM
    @Barthax Yes my later test was on RRV and the same results occured. My first test was on PS1 and the original RR. I couldn't work out why the timer was fine between PS2 but not PS1 then i learn't that the PS2 and most later consoles use the BIOS timer to set in game time. PS1 though uses in game time as it has a far less complex BIOS with no time and date. This is the original post about that from about 2016/2017? however sadly most of the actual good stuff is gone now. I wish i still had hardware to do a video of what I'm talking about as it's much easier to see it in a video than me rambling on.

    But ultimately, the RRV game on NTSC vs PAL NTSC did run faster as the check point timer which relies on in game time came up about much faster than on the PAL running NTSC. Confused i looked into this as i knew PS2, Dreamcast etc had 50/60Hz options back in the day for some games and i found out its not the oscillator crystal on these but the video decoder/render which causes it. It's too technical to remember now but the important thing is it was tested and we know it effects this console. So far PS1 (mod chip), SNES (everdrive) and PS2 (FreeMCboot) all showed issues with cross region play.

    Ok so moment of truth time... For PS2 at least...

    Attachment 25360


    I got my Japanese PS2 today so i decided to run a test like i did on the PS1. I recorded Ridge Racer 5 NTSC-J on the same disk image, same track, same settings etc. Only difference is the PAL console was soft modded (basically using a software mod chip) in order to run the NTSC game whereas obviously the NTSC-J console was legit and running it as intended from the factory.


    The result was surprising... and confusing!


    First frame on both consoles:


    https://s7.postimg.org/s07jg75iz/image.jpg


    First frame picked up by the camera and both consoles are roughly at the same speed/time (apart from a small different in ms due to the camera FPS picking up a different time per clip as it's not fast enough to get the exact same micro second time, each time). Towards the end they are still perfectly in sync (again aside from the small ms).


    https://s17.postimg.org/lzj3g6xlb/image.jpg


    Ultimately, this means as far as PS2 is concerned, games from different regions COULD be accepted... Right? well watch this video...



    The in game timer stays fine BUT the game on PAL IS running slower... Towards the end you will see the game time out warning show up on the NTSC-J console first, then the PAL console after. They also have different total run time duration.

    So if it is running at different speed, why do the counters remain in sync i hear you ask...

    Well, the PS2 has an actual clock in the console for the BIOS. The game pulls the time from this clock instead of a in game clock (like the PS1). So the actual time will be the same as obviously, time over in japan doesn't run faster than here in the UK.. a second is a second worldwide. It also explains why the game time out timer shows at different times as this will be prompted in game by the code or some other in game prompt and NOT the real time clock.

    So, ultimately, yes PS2 cross region is also effected like the PS1. Someone needs to test Ever Drive devices as I can see cross region being a problem with those too.
    Everdrive was later tested on SNES by another TG member and the result was the same, a large time difference like the PS1 (as SNES uses in game time too.)


    Yeah, cross-region isn't original for consoles where there's a region lock. I would not expect that to function like-for-like as the games are often re-programmed per region to cater for the difference in refresh rates. For example, there's some PAL 8/16 bit Codemasters games which, at intensive game play times, run slower on NTSC region consoles than the original PAL because the game has been programmed to fit more game logic between vsyncs than there is time between the NTSC vsyncs - when running such a PAL game on the NTSC console the game logic spans two vsyncs making the game run at ~15-20FPS and not the 25FPS on PAL. That said, it's hard to argue that should be happening on your RRV example.
    This is interesting I didn't know this and with that being said... this is even more reason for original hardware to be used as who knows what consoles have this sort of coding? I sure as hell don't and as a voter it doesn't give me confidence to vote on a modded submission as i don't know the ROM or where it came from nor the console (via direct capture especially)

    It's down to the community or @Jace Hall to decide. I can keep repeating myself but the evidence is there and hopefully we can reach a conclusion after all these years. Thanks to all for the discussion every little helps make TG better.
    Last edited by rotunda; 03-01-2021 at 08:17 AM.
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  8. 03-01-2021, 09:13 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post
    Because it's a community decision on what happens regarding this sort of thing,
    It's not a community desicion, Jace has the last word when it comes to this sort of things. 3 years ago Dave Hawksett said that after discussing it internally, it had been decided that modded consoles were ok.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    No modding isn't a problem as such IF you are running correct ROM to the region of hardware in use but there is always the chance someone might not know about this, or download a ROM which has been altered or named incorrectly etc and submit a score unknowingly or worse to gain an advantage and cheat as i can tell from experience a modded PAL console playing NTSC games vs real NTSC console game play is shockingly different and if using direct capture for example you will never notice.
    Ok so you agree that modding is not a problem if the correct rom is used. Are there any scores that you are suspicious of? Because as far as I know you are the only one worried about people cheating with this sort of stuff.

    And yes if you play a NTSC game and submit to a PAL leaderboard it would be unfair, but again, that can be done even if you are using only original hardware so what's your solution for that? To not allow direct capture?

    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    PAL -> slow
    NTSC on PAL hardware -> faster
    NTSC -> Fast as hell

    You won't notice it unless you know the game mechanics very well for example, I could easily use it on my game of choice to slow the game play down and give myself an advantage with slower game play and as the in game timer for PS1 for lap times is not based on BIOS (real time) times but in game time the clock is off as well so will run slower and match the slower game play so still gives you the perception that the same lap time was achieved but in fact it was done so under much easier gaming conditions.
    Yes and if you did and you get caught you'd be banned and your scores removed.

    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    It could easily be used to fool people or literally done just by accident. I'm not saying anyone has or will do it, but the chance is there.
    AGAIN, the chance is there even if one is using only original hardware, so I ask you yet again, whats your solution for this?

    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    i nearly fell into this just this past week with a NTSC console i bought which someone had put a mod chip in. I only checked to be sure what repairs it had done to it. Not many people would and I don't know enough about programming or how the mod chip works well enough to know if it would even effect NTSC -> NTSC gaming
    if you don't know if the chip affects gameplay, why assume it would?


    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda View Post

    Ultimately what I'm saying is it gives a chance of either an accident or foul play, it has been proven and so, do we just let it carry on and hope it doesn't happen or do we do something to prevent it going forward.
    What do you mean "do we let it carry on"? carry on what? you mentioned that you are not saying that any scores have been cheated but still want to stop it from continuing? what do you want to stop exactly? If you suspect any scores, the best idea is to dispute them, if you don't suspect any scores, then this is not a problem is it?
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  9. 03-01-2021, 09:23 AM
    i would point out i wasnt thrilled about this decision as in some ways it reminds me of when third party uploads were allowed. yes they were allowed but we were also warned we'd lose cred if they went missing, meaning voting "right" meant knowing the future and sure enough there are complaints now

    same with mods. we approve if no differences are known, yet if down the line differences are found, the score can be removed and the people who voted wrong can be penalized which i'm sure will lead to its own wave of complaints.

    i abstained on third party uploads and i abstain on mods i'm not confident are zero problem. since its allowed we cant decide to reject. we have to accept or abstain. accepters should keep in mind though the "its allowed" comes with "IF it leads to identical game play" and if there was some minor difference that the adjudictaor missed, thats on them and they will be eventualy pinged for it
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  10. 03-01-2021, 09:35 AM
    It's not a community desicion, Jace has the last word when it comes to this sort of things. 3 years ago Dave Hawksett said that after discussing it internally, it had been decided that modded consoles were ok.
    Yes, he does but the community as a whole discusses the options. That said, if there has been a internal talk about it and that is the outcome then there is nothing more to be said. I was not aware of this and i respect their decision. I can't say I agree with it as I have shown issues with this sort of thing but that's fine I'm glad, at last there is a final decision about this. May want to amend the rules though to make it more clear @Dave Hawksett as the current rules are confusing regarding this subject.

    i would point out i wasnt thrilled about this decision as in some ways it reminds me of when third party uploads were allowed. yes they were allowed but we were also warned we'd lose cred if they went missing, meaning voting "right" meant knowing the future and sure enough there are complaints now

    same with mods. we approve if no differences are known, yet if down the line differences are found, the score can be removed and the people who voted wrong can be penalized which i'm sure will lead to its own wave of complaints.
    Finally! Thank you, someone who understands what I am getting at. @Pixe Sukola to answer all your other questions, this is the point I'm making its not about if someone will cheat or has. It's about the possibility of doing so and even doing so without knowledge and the consequences later on. People could loose scores they worked very hard for, people loose cred, why let it MAYBE happen when we can sort the problem now as there is clear evidence to prove it. It's a known problem, why ignore it.

    i abstained on third party uploads and i abstain on mods i'm not confident are zero problem. since its allowed we cant decide to reject. we have to accept or abstain. accepters should keep in mind though the "its allowed" comes with "IF it leads to identical game play" and if there was some minor difference that the adjudictaor missed, thats on them and they will be eventualy pinged for it
    Exactly and with direct capture and roms and everdrives and mod chips being used... personally like you @Snowflake i don't vote on these submissions as i cannot be certain what console is used or if the rom or iso is legit, the right region, the list goes on and on.

    Look at the Donkey Kong scores and how much checking goes into that. Then look at some console submissions.. there is a huge discrepancy between them and in most cases its not track rule set.

    With that said though again, i was unaware an internal talk had happened and i respect the decision made and I'm glad it was discussed and people come to a conclusion. I may not agree and will continue to abstain from certain submissions (which is totally the voters choice) but i respect the decision so on that note... happy gaming everyone and good luck in your endeavors.
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