[Andrew] is developing a game for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Emulators are great for this, but [Andy] loves running on the real iron. To help, he’s created a dual port RAM interface for his NES. As the name implies, a dual port RAM is a memory with two separate data and address buses. The Cypress Semiconductor CY7C136 [Andy] used also includes arbitration logic to ensure that both ports don’t attempt to access the same memory cell and cause data corruption. In [Andy's] case the NES was on one side, oblivious to the new hardware. On the other side of the dual port RAM, [Andy] installed an ATmega164 running his own custom firmware.
The new hardware gives [Andy] a live view of what’s going on in the NES’s memory. He added a live memory view/edit screen similar to the FCEUX emulator. The window runs on a PC while the game itself is running on an NES. [Andy] was even able to add rudimentary break and step features by connecting his circuit to the Non Maskable Interrupt (NMI) line of the NES. By holding the NMI asserted, the ATmega can essentially freeze the game in progress.
[Andy] has even used his circuit to teach the NES some new tricks. By reading the timer and score memory locations on Ice Hockey, he was able to create a scoreboard and goal light. Similar techniques were used to give Contra a muzzle flash light which puts Ambilightsystems to shame.
We don’t know what [Andy] is planning next, but we hope it’s a source release so we can start hacking some some games ourselves!
Welcome to the DCEmu Homebrew and Gaming Network. This Network of sites is owned and ran by fans of the retro consoles and the latest next-gen consoles, we post news on all the consoles we cover about hardware aspects, gaming, modification, Hacking and Homebrew. Homebrew and Emulation are software thats made using free and legal tools to play on games consoles. This Network is the only worldwide network of sites where coders can upload and post news of their own releases and get the credit and comments they deserve for all their hardwork. We have a Network that currently supports PSvita, Nintendo 3DS, WiiU, PS4, Xbox720, Nintendo Wii, Xbox360,Pandora, Dingoo, Wiz, PS3, PS2, Xbox, Gamecube, Nintendo DS, PSP, GBA, Dreamcast, Sega Saturn, Android, Apple, Blackberry, GP32, GP2X, Nintendo 64, Snes, Gameboy, Nes, Virtual Boy, Apple iPhone, Ipad, Ipod Touch, Ipod, Windows Phone and also Mobile Phone Emulation. When new consoles appear we will expand to cover those consoles.
Please help DCEmu become stronger by posting on the forums every day and make our community larger.