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spectre
04-30-2018 at 02:19 AM
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Submit NTSC scores on PAL Dreamcast?

Usually it's not possible, on other consoles like NES, SNES etc., to submit scores for NTSC on a PAL console as they run at the wrong refreshrate. 50hz in PAL and 60hz in NTSC. Sometimes there's differences in the games too.

BUT!

What about the Dreamcast? Just like with Everdrives, there's questionable ways to obtain and run a game from any region you want and run that region on whatever region consoles you have WITHOUT modifications.

For example, you can get, let's say, Jet Set Radio (NTSC) and run it at 60hz on a PAL region Dreamcast.

Is it allowed to do this as long as you prove that the software is NTSC and that it does in fact run at 60hz?
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  1. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar
    @Barthax you’re my Euro A/V appeal. Have any thoughts?

    I personally think that if it can be PROVEN to run the same it should be okay. Don Atreides did this on Xbox for Fusion Frenzy (really great game) and after doing it incorrectly once he was able to submit PAL on NTSC console with converter/adapter and get them accepted. One of his submissions is here https://www.twingalaxies.com/showthread.php/153961
  2. Barthax's Avatar
    LOL, this is the problem with the labels "NTSC" and "PAL". The correct classification is "60Hz" and "50Hz". Many, many scores in the database under "NTSC" are PAL-60 runs - including native, unmodified PAL-region Dreamcast runs of PAL-region games run at 60Hz. If the console was natively capable of running at 60Hz, it was classed as an "NTSC" run because the reason for the split is because of timing differences - not because of region.

    Note 1: Don Atriedes used a PAL-region Xbox and submitted to PAL-classification tracks. The converter that was used was external to the Xbox to make the 50Hz SD signal compatible with his HD TV.

    Note 2: NTSC-region games must be played on NTSC-region consoles. PAL-region games must be played on PAL-region consoles.
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    Updated 04-30-2018 at 03:45 AM by Barthax
  3. spectre's Avatar
    If I bought a Dreamcast with no label I would have no idea what region it was as it would play both PAL and NTSC titles, which was obtained in a questionable manner.

    Why does a Dreamcast region code matter if it plays the correct software at the correct framerate?
  4. rotunda's Avatar
    It would be the same as with the PlayStation, it will have different timing even though it displays a 60Hz signal. It will run at 60Hz but due to the oscillator crystal on PAL systems it will still run ever so slightly slower.

    I debunked this for my own submissions awhile back: https://www.twingalaxies.com/showthr...439#post817439

    It's the same reason I never vote on Everdrive submissions as you can never tell if the ROM is PAL or NTSC or if they are running it on the right system. But that's another argument entirely.

    It is frustrating for sure for us PAL users but the only way to go is to import proper NTSC hardware.
  5. spectre's Avatar
    Good point, I will have to look into that to see if that's the case with the Dreamcast too.
    The thing is, the Dreamcast is not modified in any way and does not require a bootdisc or chip.
  6. Barthax's Avatar
    Dreamcast regions are very easy: blue boot-up = PAL, orange boot up = NTSC.
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  7. rotunda's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by spectre
    Good point, I will have to look into that to see if that's the case with the Dreamcast too.
    The thing is, the Dreamcast is not modified in any way and does not require a bootdisc or chip.
    Indeed, I recall my old PAL Dreamcast being able to run many titles at 60Hz with a compatible CRT back in the day. Used to have test screens to test your CRT at the start of the game.

    I'm 99% sure it will run slower though. Only reason i don't say 100% is because I've never tested it myself. I did the test on a PAL PS2 (running FreeMCboot to allow NTSC/60Hz games) vs a real Japanese NTSC console on Ridge Racer V and it ran slower. I can't imagine the Dreamcast being any different.

    It won't matter if it's modified or not as it's the actual boards oscillator frequency which causes the slow down. It happens on every console I've ever tested or seen other people test. It sucks but it's the reality sadly.
    Updated 04-30-2018 at 09:14 AM by rotunda
  8. Barthax's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda
    I'm 99% sure it will run slower though. Only reason i don't say 100% is because I've never tested it myself. I did the test on a PAL PS2 (running FreeMCboot to allow NTSC/60Hz games) vs a real Japanese NTSC console on Ridge Racer V and it ran slower. I can't imagine the Dreamcast being any different.
    That does not mean a PAL-region 60Hz game will run slower than the same NTSC-region 60Hz game on an NTSC-region console. It's a logical leap you've made but it's a leap none-the-less. Games need only be programmed slightly differently to behave differently. To put none too fine a point on it, you have a tendancy to be a one-track pony when it comes to game selection. ;)
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  9. rotunda's Avatar
    This is true actually... I have only tested the Ridge Racer series of games myself but someone on the thread i posted above did test Mario Kart on SNES with the same result as me.

    That said, you do have a point. I'm certainly not an expert and I didn't know programmers could do that but I guess it may be possible as it actually gives you the option in game rather than using mod chips and 3rd party methods to achieve the same result.

    It's an interesting proposal actually which I would be interested to see results on.
    @spectre, perhaps get someone to record Crazy Taxi or some other game with a timer and compare it frame by frame, PAL at 60Hz vs NTSC.
  10. Barthax's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by rotunda
    This is true actually... I have only tested the Ridge Racer series of games myself but someone on the thread i posted above did test Mario Kart on SNES with the same result as me.
    If you're going to include the SNES or NES then you're comparing Apples with Oranges. The SNES & NES PAL region consoles have slower CPUs (not just the oscillator).

    Ignoring SNES & NES...
    The oscillator is used for multiple things but primarily it's job is just to create a timing sync between one thing and another thing. In consoles the oft-referred to oscillator is the video sync because NTSC vs. PAL creates an experience divide. However, don't forget that PCs are universal - they play at the same rate regardless of region. Consoles amount to nothing more than specialised PCs in a specialised shell. So the fundamental differences for speed to be a factor are how they are programmed. If the same components (except oscillator) are in the NTSC & PAL set of consoles, then the only difference is why the oscillator is used. For multiple machines, it's used by the graphics output device only to synchronise with the VDU - that process is separate from the running of the machine. Then add in the program that is running & if that is artificially inducing a wait-state (waiting for the vertical sync of the VDU being the classic wait-point in games).

    Multiple components, multiple measurements, multiple answers. There's no single blanket-answer to NTSC vs. PAL. Otherwise, we'd still be separating the modern systems the same because the PAL region versions still cater for SD output at 50Hz...
  11. spectre's Avatar
    yes, NES and SNES, well everything predating the Dreamcast can't be merged.

    I did some googling yesterday and the only difference I could find between NTSC-U, NTSC-J and PAL was the BIOS. The BIOS holds the region encryption. If you aquire the selfbootable discs off of the internet the software circumvents the BIOS check allowing for a NTSC-U or NTSC-J game to be executed on a PAL consoles at 60hz.
  12. rotunda's Avatar
    But has anyone tested a timer on NTSC vs PAL running at 60Hz on Dreamcast? That's the only way to know for sure. Just record the same level with the same timer at 60 FPS on both the PAL system set at 60hz and then the same on the genuine NTSC and then use premier or something to see how far out (if at all) the timer is after say a minute or so. I did this exact test on Ridge Racer V on PlayStation 2 and it was way out after a minute.

    It happens on PS2 and that is the same generation as Dreamcast so it's certainly not just relevant to consoles which predate Dreamcast.
  13. sdwyer138's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by spectre
    I did some googling yesterday and the only difference I could find between NTSC-U, NTSC-J and PAL was the BIOS. The BIOS holds the region encryption. If you aquire the selfbootable discs off of the internet the software circumvents the BIOS check allowing for a NTSC-U or NTSC-J game to be executed on a PAL consoles at 60hz.
    That's good info. I'm also interested in if playing NTSC-J disc on a NTSC-U system by way of a boot disc (action replay) would be acceptable. I have a couple JP games I want to submit for, but I really don't want to buy a JP DC.
  14. EVN's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by sdwyer138
    That's good info. I'm also interested in if playing NTSC-J disc on a NTSC-U system by way of a boot disc (action replay) would be acceptable. I have a couple JP games I want to submit for, but I really don't want to buy a JP DC.
    This has already been done and accepted here. I think it was Capcom vs SNK 2.
  15. sdwyer138's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by EVN
    This has already been done and accepted here. I think it was Capcom vs SNK 2.
    Looking at Chris's submission, he mentions "bios swap". I'm not sure what exactly that means, but there is no boot disc present. All the same, good info.
  16. EVN's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by sdwyer138
    Looking at Chris's submission, he mentions "bios swap". I'm not sure what exactly that means, but there is no boot disc present. All the same, good info.
    Either method... its just bypassing the region check so the game will run.
  17. sdwyer138's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by EVN
    Either method... its just bypassing the region check so the game will run.
    Cool, well maybe I'll submit using a boot disc here at some point and see what happens.
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