Author Topic: Gamate Discussion  (Read 24481 times)

Macaw

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Gamate Discussion
« on: October 09, 2012, 08:32:38 AM »
So I've been tracking down Gamate games for over a year now and thanks to some luck I've got a bunch of the rarer stuff, and just recently a collector sold all his stuff and I managed to pick up a good chunk of the Asian exclusive game releases. While the system is notorious for having a bunch of shitty clone games comparable to the Supervision, I cant express enough just how much better the later UMC game releases are. Of course they are so rare that most people have never played them or don't even know they exist.

Bottom line though is that the Gamate is the only game system left out there which has the largest amount of quality game releases that are completely unknown and undocumented on the net. No screenshots, barely any info, pretty much nothing beyond a couple of photo's of the cards/boxes for just some of the games. A good half or so of the game library is of course the total trash Bit Corp releases, but the UMC games are way better than the library of something like say the Lynx, and even lots of the games are cooler than a ton of the stuff on the gameboy due to the games being original and interesting, as opposed to the gameboy which for the most part got cut down ports of console games, or games based on licenses. Also the later Gamate games have a FUCKTON better graphics than the early shit, UMC actually hired proper artists to do the graphics and a bunch of the games look better than the majority of the Gameboy library.

So yeah, even more amazing is how the Gamate doesn't have an emulator, but the supervision does with its utterly useless library of games. Once again of course, this is just due to the rarity of the UMC Gamate games, especially outside of China/Taiwan.


Anyway, over this year I've slowly been adding more and more to a complete Gamate game database I've been compiling, filling it with details about every release, including all the original Chinese text titles for all the asian exclusive games and whatnot. The list renders the current lists posted around the internet completely useless, and thankfully there are only very few mysteries left regarding the Gamate game library.

Of course just as important as a definitive database are scans and screenshots of all the good later era Gamate games, which is the most important thing to 'exposing' the quality games on the system and make heaps of people a lot more interested in it. Its kinda similar to the situation with the Super A'can, but the Gamate thankfully had a lot more games released for it, and thats even after ignoring all the shitty Bit Corp releases.

So yeah I do plan to do box scans/card scans and screenshots to the stuff I have. Unlike a lot of the gamate 'collectors' who maybe have a few of the UMC games but practically never play them, I've actually played through and finished a bunch of the titles now. Hah, maybe I sound arrogant for saying that, but I mean come on its true a lot of the collectors in possession of these games have likely barely played them  ^_^  Anyway what this means is that when I get around to taking screenshots of the games I'll be able to take a whole bunch from areas all through the game instead of just 1 or 2 ghetto screens. Finishing a bunch of the games has also revealed lots of staff credits in the later games, so I've recorded those too in a text document.

I don't have a clue whether to start up a shitty little website to post my shit, or just maybe try collaborate with Taizou for neofuji/handheld undergound or whatever. Either way I've still got some games on their way, so i'll wait a bit longer before I decide to scan all the boxes/cards of everything, then after that I can start doing screenshots of the games themselves.


So yeah everyone feel free to discuss anything about this here or ask me questions about shit.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2012, 11:01:25 AM by Macaw »

taizou

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« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2012, 08:42:29 AM »
funny you should mention that - just last night I was digging through some of my Gamate stuff that I never got around to uploading, and I'm thinking of updating the whole section and moving it across to Handheld Underground. so, yeah, I'd be happy to collaborate with you if you'd like to. :D

i'm especially interested in the credits, it'd be interesting to find out what the staff got up to afterwards - the only one I know of really is Tommy Xie.

Barver

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« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2012, 02:09:04 PM »
I'm curious to see what these UMC games look like. I guess I'm biased by only seeing some of the junk Bitcorp did, but I never imagined this system having anything that qualifies as "good" =p

Macaw

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« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2012, 09:57:54 PM »
Haha I know what you mean. I literally only spent about 30 seconds on most of the bit corp titles before switching games. Total trash. To help show just how much of a shocking difference there is in graphics quality with the later UMC era games though heres an image of game c1-069 (寶藏之謎). This copy of the game originated with Difuno who then sold it to Jonathon Lux, who then sold it to me. Image is from difuno's photobucket because I haven't done proper scans yet. Apart from the fancy graphics its a rather intriguing action adventure game that I managed to finish some days back after a bunch of attempts, and the main character occasionally getting in crazy situations like the sumo match pictured on the back of the box is pretty damn cool.


Macaw

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« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2012, 03:24:02 AM »
Anyone have tips for getting game screenshots from handhelds? I just experimented for a while with different light and camera options but all photo's looked like shit. Maybe scanning is the only way to go?

taizou

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« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2012, 04:56:22 AM »
yeah that's the way I had to do it.. though I guess it depends on your camera. my phone camera seems to be quite good at taking screenshots of the Game Boy Color screen, whereas my actual camera isn't, so maybe my phone would work for the Gamate too. I'm not sure though, I don't have a Gamate with me to test at the moment.

Macaw

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« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2012, 05:20:58 AM »
I tried to do some scans but they looked like total crap, unlike your scans that are bright and clear mine turned out dark and muddled even at 1200 dpi. I spent some more time trying photo methods though and managed to figure out a way of taking decent clear shots. Just have to take the photo's with a light at the right angle and shooting the camera at a ridiculous position so that the camera shadow isn't on it at all, then cropping the screen out in photoshop. Not as sharp and clear as your screens for stuff like Cube-up, but better than the photo's provided for Famous on your site.

Also here are staff credits for 2 games. I've seen staff credits for 2 other games but they were written in Chinese, so cant exactly figure those ones out unless screenshots were taken.

Due to the extreme higher quality of these UMC releases I'm guessing the staff are totally different from anyone that worked on the Bit Corp stuff, likely more legit developers that possibly came from the rather large Taiwanese PC DOS scene at the time.



Punk Boy 龐克旋風 (Game number c1-049)

Director:
Yeh Chaung Ling

Designer:
Small Kain

Programmer:
You Ten-Der


--------------------

侠盗罗宾汉 Robin Hood (Game number c1-067)

Director:
Sheling QIU

Programmer:
JianPing GU
ZhengYu QIAO

Paint Designer:
Mei BAI
Li FENG

Music & Sound:
ShuoZhen BI
JianPing GU

Date:
1994.01.10

taizou

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« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2012, 08:02:50 AM »
I did have to jack the brightness and contrast way up on my scans to get the results I have, though.

anyway thanks for the credits! I don't recognise any names from anywhere else, but I guess they were probably the same team that went on to make Funtech's in-house Super A'can games.

Macaw

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« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2012, 01:08:50 PM »
I didnt even bother with brightness settings for the scanned images I did, the inside of my scanner is obviously far worse than I thought and the screens were covered in dirt and dust and crap. Photo's will be better anyway so I can take shots of more things instead of just static screens or areas you can pause the game in.

Also interesting to note that many of the later games have a 'date' in the credits, like how Robin Hood I posted above lists 1994.01.10. The credits to game 69 (the one I posted the box of above, which is also the highest numbered gamate release currently known) is one of the games with a Chinese written staff roll, but its 'date' is listed as July 1994. The UMC era for the gamate had a number of phases, in 1992 they released stuff like Punk Boy and GP Race which were a big jump in quality from the Bit games. Then there were a few 1993 releases which are slightly higher quality again, and then most of the games in the last phase of releases in 1994 which were exclusive to asia are the most advanced (especially in graphics) as can be seen once again from the box I posted above. Basically these games are the main reason why anyone should be interested in the Gamate and why the games deserve to be preserved.

Macaw

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« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2012, 11:56:33 AM »
Heres an example of the quality I was able to get by taking photo's. Any opinions of whether its good enough? This is the character selection screen to the asian only release c1-064, called Bao Qing Tian, rich is a cool final fight style beat em up with some of the most impressive graphics I've seen on the system so far (along with game c1-069 anyway), and graphically definitely blows away all similar genre games on the gameboy.

Also hilarious to note that the big guy on the left is indeed the legendary historical judge Bao Zheng, although according to this game his form of justice involved bashing the shit out of seemingly everyone he comes across  ^_^ . Some people probably also know about the couple of unlicensed Famicom games also called Bao Qing Tian based on the same character, one being a shithouse platformer and the other being a VS fighter.


taizou

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« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2012, 12:31:54 PM »
Yeah that's good enough quality for me :D I've never had a chance to play these later UMC games, its interesting to hear how much better they were than the earlier stuff.

Robyn

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« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2012, 12:46:46 PM »
I swear there's a pirate for famicom or gbc called Bao Qing Tian! :O

taizou

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« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2012, 01:19:37 PM »
RobGBA
Oct 13 2012, 12:46:46 PM
I swear there's a pirate for famicom or gbc called Bao Qing Tian! :O[/quote]
Macaw
 
Some people probably also know about the couple of unlicensed Famicom games also called Bao Qing Tian based on the same character, one being a shithouse platformer and the other being a VS fighter.[/quote]

:D

Macaw

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« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2012, 01:22:34 PM »
Quote:
 
I swear there's a pirate for famicom or gbc called Bao Qing Tian![/quote]

I mentioned the Famicom games in my previous post   ^_^  Bao Qing Tian was a name for Bao Zheng, so its quite a common name given to games/tv shows and such relating to the character.


Quote:
 
I've never had a chance to play these later UMC games, its interesting to hear how much better they were than the earlier stuff.[/quote]

Its bizzare how UMC decided to support the system and overhaul its image by producing proper high quality original games for it. This screenshot (from sickertus's photobucket) is a good example of the original era Gamate contrasting with the UMC era, with the original Gamate showing a screenshot of the piece of shit pacman clone Money Maze which was an early BIT Corp game, while the later era UMC Gamate is showing a screenshot of game c1-058 called 天羅煞 Heaven Clash, which is a VS fighting game and was the first UMC game release that was a Taiwan/Chinese exclusive. All games from c1-058 onwards were asian exclusive releases.



Macaw

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« Reply #14 on: October 18, 2012, 08:47:31 AM »
Hey Taizou, how long ago was it that you saw the Ruten auctions of the couple of Chinese games you have photo's of in your Gamate section? I've been browsing the taiwan auction sites for a year now and have never seen a single UMC era game come up, with the exception of Heaven Clash which was being sold alongside a Gamate system for a ludicrous price for months before disappearing at the end of last year. Dunno if I'm shit at searching properly, I'm just browsing with searches for either 'Gamate, '超級小子' or '超级神童'.

Also any shots of games from auctions that you never got around to uploading? Would be interested to see if there are any games or boxes I haven't seen yet.