PC-FXGA – Homebrew – Made in Japan

Hey Folks,

As you may have seen, I’ve been updating gradually a number of pages on the PC-FXGA for you to find out a little more about what it is and what it can do. As you may know there weren’t many pieces of software and games released for it officially outside of SameGameFX, Nnyu and a few demos. These have been covered at length on Youtube and by yours truly.

Back in the days… in the mid-90s/early00s, there was a fairly active scene of homebrew developers for the PC-FXGA in Japan. Many of these developers had webpages hosting their demos, games and sometimes source code. Unfortunately most of these webpages have now disappeared, thanks in part to the demise of Yahoo Japan Geocities.

At the time, I did download a few of these demos/games and kept them in a folder, fast forward to 2019, I did a bit of research on archive.org and found a few more of these pieces of software and put together a little showcase.

The video below is the result of an afternoon trying to get these demo/games to load  onto the real hardware. About 8 of them worked beautifully but unfortunately a couple wouldn’t load or function properly. I might try these working in the future but for now, enjoy the following 8 homebrews made in Japan in action 🙂

In Order Of Appearance

#1 Sprite by Yoshinori Adachi

#2 Panel25fx by Yoshinori Adachi

#3 PSX Demo by HyperClub

#4 Maze2D by HyperClub

#5 Ren 001 by Ruon

#6 Ren 003 by Ruon

#7 Mudai 1.00 by Yggsoft

#8 Pilele by Team Ignition


You can download (most) of the above demos and try them out by following the links below. Some of these are still downloadable at their original location but most are now living at archive.org:

Panel25fx, Sprite & Pazle (not working) by Yoshinori Adachi:            http://alf-s-room.main.jp/computer/pcfxga.htm

PSX Demo by HyperClub: https://web.archive.org/web/20040223123419fw_/http://homepage1.nifty.com/hyperclub/download/fxga/psxdemo.lzh

Maze2D by HyperClub: https://web.archive.org/web/20040223123419fw_/http://homepage1.nifty.com/hyperclub/download/fxga/Maze2D.lzh

Ren 001 by Ruon: http://web.archive.org/web/19991111112132/http://www.nttl-net.ne.jp:80/ruon/download/Ren001.lzh

Ren 003 by Ruon: http://web.archive.org/web/19991011154504/http://www.nttl-net.ne.jp:80/ruon/download/ren003.lzh

Mudai 1.00 by Yggsoft: https://web.archive.org/web/20001028081449/http://www.cute.to/~itoyan/yggdore/game/mudai1_0.lzh

Music used in this video:

Track 1 – reCreation by airtone (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/airtone/59721

Track 2 – nightRain by airtone (c) copyright 2017 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/airtone/55887

Track 3 – seachange by airtone (c) copyright 2016 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/airtone/53762

Track 4 – nightWalk by airtone (c) copyright 2017 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/airtone/56520

Track 5 – Battle Heat – Everlasting Dance (c) copyright 1994 Hudson Soft

Thank you for watching.

Broken Thunder – PC

Hey Folks,

For many of us shmups fan, Thunder Force is a staple of the genre, Thunder Force II was my first shmup on the Megadrive and needless to say I was quickly hooked and dove without any hesitations into all subsequent episodes.

As we know, Tecnosoft folded into the Twenty-One Company in 2001, Thunder Force VI for Dreamcast got canned. Tecnosoft is now referred as Twenty-One Tecnosoft Division and primarily sells OSTs of past games. SEGA bought the Technosoft IP and brand rights but we’re yet to see anything substantial coming out of that.

The cancellation of Thunder Force VI on Dreamcast coincided with the demise of the Dreamcast and SEGA’s re-orientation as a business, this is has been well documented so I won’t dwell too much into that.

In a previous post, we covered the mini game “R720 with Syrinx” from Segagaga which kind of acts as a love song to the aborted Thunder Force VI on Dreamcast. I’m not sure if any code from TFVI was re-used for this but I’m pretty convinced the Syrinx ship model used there is the real deal.

While we may never (ever?) get Thunder Force VI on DC, the actual soundtrack (or at least what was recorded up to its cancellation) was released, twice, actually:

– In 2001 as Noise Image Soundtrack Vol.3 Broken Thunder


– In 2005 as Broken Thunder – project Thunder Force VI


Official page for this disc here.

Both OSTs are composed for the most part by Hyakutaro Tsukumo (the man behind the soundtrack for Thunder Force V for example) and guests. Both were released by Noise Factory & AG. These soundtracks are pure Tecnosoft sonic bliss. If you haven’t listened to these, I’d highly recommend you do. The CDs are not so hard to find, if you have a proxy in Japan but you can easily listen to them on YouTube.

So what about Broken Thunder the game?

Well, it has a short and sad history I’m afraid… Back in 2005-2006, rumours were starting to circulate that Tecnosoft was to resume operation and hire new staff to work on Thunder Force VI for an unspecified platform. I was sceptical at the time, since the Twenty One Company is mostly focused on pachinko, it made little sense for them to resurrect Tecnosoft just for one game.

It turned out later that Factory Noise & AG (a music company) were in fact the ones developing a Doujin game based on the Thunder Force franchise, unsurprisingly under the name Broken Thunder…

Initially, Factory Noise & AG, released a Preview CD to wet our appetite. The CD contains the opening movie, about some wallpapers and MP3 tracks. A friend of mine in Japan (also a TF fan) bought a copy for me and we both agreed that actually the content of the CD looked really good. I had high hopes for Broken Thunder until it got released…

Broken Thunder was released on Friday, May 3, 2007 by Factory Noise & AG for Windows PC only. 2 editions were available at launch:

– a limited edition that includes the game soundtrack on CD sold for 5,250 yen

– a regular edition was released simultaneously sold for 2,940 yen.


Upon release the game turned out to be fairly Broken… Reviews were really bad for the few that bought it, personally I passed on the purchase… The main problem is that the game  was very incomplete, it feels more like an alpha/beta than a proper game. Even the creators admitted via a text file on the game cd and on their website that the game doesn’t even contain 1/3 of the elements designed for the game. FNA planned to release the rest of the contents as a free patch, unfortunately due to poor sales and limited resources, the patch never materialised, the game got pulled out of the shelves and FNA folded soon after.

I believe the other reason for Broken Thunder’s demise is that the Twenty One Company didn’t like their IP to be used without permission and so clearly plagiarised. Around August 2007 the following update appeared on the Tecnosoft website (the real first update since 2001):


Less than a year later we learned that Thunder Force VI was being developed for the PS2 and Broken Thunder fell very quickly into oblivion:


So why bother writing so much about a crap game?

Fast forward to 2016, out of curiosity I bought a copy of Broken Thunder from Japan, I had seen gameplay videos on YouTube and it looked underwhelming. However, as an avid Thunder Force fan, since the release of TFVI on PS2 nothing much has happened with my beloved franchise. So I needed a fix…

After a short installation procedure and a lengthy tuning of the settings to get it to run on Windows 10, I was ready…

Needless to say, the review from back in 2007 were right, this game is a total mess, compared to any Thunder Force games released in the past. The movies for the intro, between level 4&5 and the ending are all well done but I don’t know what FNA were thinking at the time when they released Broken Thunder.

The graphics are very generic and any lack details, the background are static and empty, the animation of the main ship and some of the enemies are ok but the bosses are laughable, they lack any sort of interesting animation. They look like a single block of polygons flying around aimlessly, firing a few bullets here and there for a good measure. The boss of the first level is particularly amusing.

The game is fairly short and the difficulty goes from easy during the levels to nearly impossible during the boss fights, unless you manage well and have 3 claws fully charged before each fight. Even then, the boss of the 4th level is actually pretty vicious, taking inspiration from A3 from Thunder Force V without any of its class…

Despite many many flaws, I still enjoyed Broken Thunder, yes it’s far from being a proper Thunder Force and it’s very unfinished but the soundtrack is so awesome that I mainly play the game over and over just for that 🙂

As most of the gameplay videos on YouTube are fairly old, I decided to make a new one in high resolution, it’s not a full walkthrough but at least you can have a taste of the first 4 levels. I’m planning to do a full run through of the game in the future as well, so stay tuned.

Enjoy the broken Broken Thunder in all its glory and horror:

Also did a speedrun video, with Broken Thunder plugged into Cheat Engine 6.7, here the game runs at 5x speed with infinite lives and over weapon enabled. I don’t generally having cheats enabled but I was messing around with Cheat Engine to find any possible hidden content and I thought just running it at 5x was hilarious but I wanted to see how quickly the game could be completed 🙂

MSX – Tales of Popolon – Gameplay

“For many centuries, the world had been at peace. Lands were prosperous, and people reached old age. However, all of that was about to change…

Suddenly, towns started being attacked by beasts, killing many. Storms started sinking ships into the ocean and ruined crops. People started to think that they had lost the favor of the Gods of Olympus…

In response, one night, Thanatos, the God of peaceful death, appeared in the dreams of the mighty hero Popolon.

Popolon, I am Thanatos! The Gods of Olympus need your help! An Evil fortress has been built in Olympus against our will… Someone is causing people to die, and their souls are being sent to be trapped in the fortress, preventing them from reaching Hades!

You are our only hope Popolon! Only mortal souls can enter the fortress. Please go and stop the source of evil!” (source: ToP Github page)

31 years after the release of Knightmare by Konami on the MSX, we get a fourth episode in the Popolon saga courtesy of Santiago Ontañón Villar. Santiago is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Drexel University, who’s actually done quite a bit on the MSX and on remaking MSX games for PCs & Macs (See: Braingames’ page) Smart cookie!

There are a ton of new games getting released on the MSX nowadays thanks to the amazing community built around our beloved 8-bit boxes. This particular one caught my attention because:

  • it’s related to the Knightmare series/Konami and
  • it’s got a nice physical release done by Matranet.
  • but more importantly, the game uses ray-casting, yes, ray-casting on the MSX, who knew right?

For the uninitiated, “Ray-casting is the use of ray–surface intersection tests to solve a variety of problems in computer graphics and computational geometry.” (Source: Wikipedia).

If you’ve played Wolfenstein 3D then you’re familiar with the technique of ray-casting. Tales of Popolon plays in the same manner and if you know what the hardware the MSX is based on, you know it’s absolutely not 3D friendly. In fact, the game minimum’s specs are MSX1 with 16kb of RAM and it still runs smoothly.

Unsurprisingly: “In Tales of Popolon you play as Popolon, an ancient Greek hero tasked with a mission from Thanatos. He must discover who is trapping souls of people in an evil fortress built at the base of Mount Olympus and stopping them! You will have to find your way around the labyrinthic fortress, defeating monsters that inhabit it while collecting weapons and other power-ups that are spread over the fortress.” (source: ToP Github page)

In a nutshell, the game is a classic dungeon crawler where you move through small corridors fighting enemies with your fist and various other weapons like a sword. So far I’ve seen keys being required to move from one area to the next. However, I haven’t been able to spend much time playing it, just yet. In this day and age of super realistic 3D graphics, I’m very surprised how neat it is and how well it plays.

As you can see Matra did a really good job with the physical release, the box is actually quite small but gorgeous and it also comes with a manual.

Here is a little gameplay video, I used my Panasonic MSX2 FS-A1 MkII through the Framemeister for this one:

If you are an MSX & Knightmare fan it’s definitely worth picking up, it is an impressive technical feat, even just on that basis it’s worth looking at.

There are several ways to get hold of this game:


Kid Klown in Crazy Chase (Sample/Beta/Prototype)

Hey Folks,

A long long looonnng time ago, I bought this sample/beta/prototype cart from a mate in Japan, the game is Kid Klown in Crazy Chase for the Super Famicom.

This game is probably one of the most frustrating games I’ve ever get to play in my life.  You can find a detailed review here on Nintendo Life.

Pretty much everything in this game is out to get you… and it gets you frequently, very frequently. Secondly you need to collect items (four playing-card suit symbols) while you are running down in the game (you can only run down the levels) in order to get the key that unlocks the next level…

I recently bought a new capture/streaming device so I thought I’d dust off this old cart and play a little.

What’s interesting about this cart is that it only contains 2 levels (the first 2 levels of the final game) and 1 bonus level, after that it gives you a nice Mode 7 animated Coming Soon message and goes back to the game title.

This cart was most likely sent to a magazine or even a store for preview/review purpose, although it seems quite custom with 2 large eproms coming off the back of the cart, perhaps it contain development code who knows?

There is an exact same cart or perhaps this exact card mentioned on SNES Central. Although this cart here doesn’t have a sticker at the back on top of the eproms or any staining, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kemco made more than one of these if not many, crafty!

Here are a few pictures of the cart:

I haven’t seen major differences (if any) compared to the final game, I’ll try to do a side by side comparison video of this version and retail in the future for posterity.

For now just enjoy some gameplay in 720p60:

Bye for now…



R720 with Syrinx – Gameplay

Hey Folks,

As a die hard Thunder Force fan, anything remotely related to this game series is of great (extreme) interest.

Everybody I’m sure have heard of Segagaga a quirky simulation of … well saving Sega from its own demise! I bought the game many moons ago but never really played it, mostly because my Japanese skills are limited 😦 And obviously without decent japanese knowledge it’s almost impossible to play.

Many of you may know that Segagaga contains a number of mini-games, one of interest for today is R720 with Syrinx.


R720 with Syrinx is kind of a spoof shmup where you have to defeat Sega characters and Sega consoles as bosses.


It’s a fairly short game but the interesting thing from a Thunder Force point of view is that one of the ships you can pilot is Syrinx which was gonna to be the main ship for Thunder Force VI on the Dreamcast. Now we’ve all seen the Thunder Force VI trailer for the Dreamcast but surprisingly it  is also included as an video introduction to Syrinx and co before you get to play R720.

We also all know that Thunder Force VI for Dreamcast was sadly cancelled in 2001 and that a struggling Tecnosoft was bought by Pachinko maker Twenty One Company. Ultimately Thunder Force VI was (re-made?) released on the PS2 on October 30, 2008.

Hyakutaro Tsukumo

An interesting fact is that the game contains music from Hyakutaro Tsukumo who composed music for a number of Tecnosoft games and Thunder Force VI for Dreamcast. The OST for TFVI DC came out in 2001 under the title Broken Thunder. This music was also re-used in the Doujin shmup Broken Thunder released back in 2007.


Segagaga was released on March 29, 2001 along with R720 with Syrinx so around the time Thunder Force VI was cancelled and 2 days before Sega decided to discontinue the Dreamcast. So here we have a ship and a partial OST from Thunder Force VI Dreamcast, the mistery deepens. Given the events and dates it’s safe to assume that R720 with Syrinx is more of a tribute rather than a preview of Thunder Force VI DC right?

Anyway today, I decided to take matter into hands and play this alleged tribute to a game I was so looking forward to on the Dreamcast. Don’t get me wrong I love Thunder Force VI on PS2 but it doesn’t have the finesse or the Tecnosoft touch of previous episodes.

So after a little bit of tinkering with Dreamcast saves downloaded on the internet, here I am playing R720 with Syrinx 🙂


Here is the outcome of my playing session in glorious 1080p, the game is in 4:3 but the video should be clear enough for you to appreciate this little gem, obviously a lot of videos on this have been made in the past but I really wanted to do my own 🙂

Enjoy and see you next time!

Retro Core – PC Engine, Megadrive & Rise of the Tomb Raider loses the plot…

Hey Folks,

Yakumo from SegagagaDomain has put together a great Retro Core episode on the NEC PC Engine. In this issue some hardware presentation and HuCards game reviews. Well worth watching 🙂

In this show we take a look at the many different forms of hardware as well as the following games.

Hana Taaka Daka (はなたっかだか)
City Hunter (シティーハンター)
Ninja Spirit (最後の忍道)
Knight Rider (ナイトライダー)
Doraemon: Meikyū Daisakusen ( ドラえもん迷宮大作戦)
Son Son 2 (ソンソンⅡ)
Override (オーバーライド)
Valkyrie no Densetsu (ワルキューレの伝説)
Gomola Speed (ゴモラスピード)
Dragon Egg (ドラゴン エッグ)
Metal Stoker (メタルストーカー)
Parasol Stars (パラソルスター)

Yakumo has been doing Retro Core and Battle of the Ports videos since… well the dawn of time 😉 You can, if you wish support him here on Patreon.

Also, the previous episode on the Megadrive is also excellent, well worth watching:

Finally, I recently started playing Rise of the Tomb Raider on PC, great game, I had a funny bug moment, last night… I threw one of these handmade cluster grenades by mistake into what looks like a pallet, seems like the grenade didn’t appreciate getting stuck in a piece of wood and started to act… well weird:

That’s all for now, see you next time…

Castlevania: Dracula X Chronicles – PSP Preview Demo

Hey folks,

An interesting piece of Castlevania history popped up recently on the Assemblergames.com forums 🙂

Courtesy of member Getta Robo, we now have a preview demo of Castlevania: Dracula X Chronicles on the PSP.

Dracula X being my all time favorite Castlevania, I had to have a try!

The demo only contains the first level of the game, both routes and bosses available. Quite a few differences compared to the release, no cinematic, different background music and graphical details.

The game came from a developer DVD and was likely used to show the title to the world.

Here’s a game play video, enjoy!

Unknown Neo Geo Fighting Game Prototype (Gameplay)

Hey Folks,

I’m sure you’ve heard about the recent release of an unknown NeoGeo fighting prototype. While there are a lot of talks and debates about its origins on NeoGeo.com, I’ve been quite eager to try it…

Looking at the Mame development page it seems that the support for this game isn’t coming out until Mame 0.173 is released which is at the end of this month.

Patience isn’t a virtue I always possess so I decided, after a little research to compile my own version of Mame 🙂 And here is the result of an hour of compilation:

The game really is at the prototype/beta stage… There is no sound for starters, although I’m not sure whether it is an emulation issue or an issue the game itself. Some of the sprites are unfinished or missing and there is no single player mode so it’s really player vs dummy… But that’s expected with this sort of material.

It is quite incredible to see prototypes released into the wild albeit a NeoGeo one. Thank you mucho to NeoTurfMasta for releasing this piece of history.

Enjoy the video!


Godzilla (PS4) Gameplay

Hey Folks,

First post in a very long time, today let’s play a little bit of Godzilla on the PS4.

I’ve always had a strange attraction to non-AAA titles… I like big productions, big stories, jaw dropping graphics… But I can’t help loving the likes of EDF and co, just because they are tons of fun.

I read a few reviews about Godzilla and all were fairly underwhelming but who cares really?

Godzilla Roars!!!
King of the Monsters!!!

The premise of the game is simple, destroy stuff and kill other kaijus to get bigger and meaner. There are quite a few game modes and loads of monsters to unlock & control that makes the game quite enjoyable and maximizes the replay value.

The controls are fairly erm… horrible? But once one gets past the initial awkwardness good fun is a ahead!!! If like me you need a break from MGSV, GTA V et al then grab this game, for the price it’s well worth it!!!

Enjoy the video 🙂


Gameplay: Ultra Seven – Chikyū Bōei Sakusen – Bandai Playdia

Hey Folks,

Time for some little obscure gameplay 🙂 I’ve had a Playdia for a long time but I never really used it. Why would I anyway? 😉 I wanted to test my EZCap 148 dongle on Windows 8.1 and it seems to be working just fine.

The game I’m playing today is Ultra Seven – Chikyū Bōei Sakusen a game based on the Ultraman series sequel, Ultra Seven. Like most Playdia games, Ultra Seven is some kind of interactive movie, however this one also has a few action sequences.

My japanese being a bit rusty, I didn’t really know what I was doing most of the time. I only played for a short period  of time so there might be more to this game than what is showed on the video…