In March, Forest of Illusion, a Twitter account designed for “Preserving Nintendo’s History”, posted a tweet about a SA-1 demonstration cartridge being available on eBay. The cartridge was undumped at that time and showed two mysterious demos: The first suggested a comparison between S-CPU (SNES CPU) and C-CPU (SA-1 CPU) and the next suggested a software SA-1 graphics rotation system.
After seeing the tweet, romhacker Vitor Vilela expressed interest and thought the cart might be used for development purposes, as well as archiving an interesting piece of video game history. Lucky for us, an amazing member of the retro gaming community offered to buy the cart for Vitor’s research! Since the cart was in the US, I had it sent to me first, so I could dump the rom (and good thing I did; It was haphazardly packed with no static protection :/). I used an Analogue Super NT and the rom seemed to dump, but wouldn’t load on my FXPak Pro or MiSTer. I started to get nervous…
…but after sending it to Vitor, he was able to get it working and the screenshots you see above were taken from the headered ROM via a MiSTer! I’ve (properly!) packed up the original cartridge and sent that to him for further analysis.
For the full story and a technical analysis, check out Vitor’s post: https://www.patreon.com/posts/50834480/
The ROM can be downloaded here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1gX2cG1k70yg0Jbkn3tgCsPt3NW6UEIyH
Everything about this story is awesome. Thanks so much to Vitor, Forest of Illusion…and of course the anonymous donor who kept the cart out of scalpers hands and allowed the retro gaming world to benefit from it.
I'm been looking for this cartridge a while ago, for research purposes.
It's unfortunate there's not dump available. https://t.co/yh5TIoI07X
— Vitor Vilela (@HackerVilela) March 23, 2021