Thursday, December 31, 2009

A message from Yuji Naka

Hello beloved Nomad Junkyard readers! I hope the holidays brought portable Sega goodness to you all. I wish I had had a stronger Sega Christmas, but the new year looks to offer great things. On the console side we have Bayonetta, Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, and Project Needlemouse, while on the portable side we have the Sonic Classic Collection, Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games, some additional mini-games for Super Monkey Ball 2 and maybe (just maybe) some bigger portable announcements from Sega. Come on Sega, Sonic CD for the iPhone!

Speaking of iPhone games, I've recently completed Let's Tap: Tap Runner and have to say that it is an awesome game! Not as good as the Wii version, but the controls and variety of courses make it rather addicting. Once one completes the game with all gold medals (first place in each course) they're greeted to this happy certificate:

Aw Yuji, you shouldn't have! I promise to aim for higher records, but only because you asked.
Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

One Year of the Nomad 'Yard!

On December 12th, 2008 I posted the first article for The Nomad Junkyard (I missed it by ten days, but I'm remembering it nonetheless). Much has changed since TNJ debuted; visits have quintupled, I've been invited to write for Sega Memories, The Saturn 'Yard and The Dreamcast 'Yard and thanks to my spending addiction my Sega collection has nearly doubled!

A special thanks to all the readers, I'm excited to see what the second year of portable Sega gaming coverage will bring.

As a special holiday gift, here's a Sega holiday recipe:

Ice Cap Night Cap
1 Genesis or Mega Drive handheld
1 Sonic 3 Cartridge
1 Headphones
6 oz Eggnog
2 oz Spiced Rum

Mix the rum and eggnog in a medium glass and sprinkle nutmeg on top. Insert the Sonic 3 cartridge into the handheld and plug in and put on headphones. Boot up game. After Sega logo appears, press Up(x2), Down(x2), and Up(x4). The sound of a ring will confirm correct code entry. Hold A and press Start to enter the level select menu. Select Act 1 of Ice Cap Zone. Enjoy!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Sonic and NO Mario at the Olympic Winter Games on the iPhone

Sega has just revealed that the popular Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games will be hitting the iPhone, but there's a catch! It seems Sonic pulled a Tonya Harding and shattered Mario's kneecaps, causing him to sit this one out (Olympic reference, though the real Tonya Harding failed to take out her competition). The game will feature zero Mario, with the title simply being Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games.

The reason for the lack of Mario is, of course, because the iPhone is a direct competitor in the world of online gaming with the Nintendo DS. No worries, the game looks to be packed full of Sonic characters, ten are available with two of them locked, and four events are featured: curling, figure skating, snowboard cross and something called skeleton. Rings, chaos and old school animal friends are littered throughout the stadiums and the graphics seem on par with the DS release. Of course, this isn't the full game, but at the presumed $9.99 price tag it looks to be worth it.

The game hits early 2010.

By the way:

[source: TouchArcade]

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Mobile Sega News Roundup

Hey gang! I feel so dirty when I go a week without making a post. I intend to rectify that right now!

Super Monkey Ball 2 for the iPhone Released
Just last week those monkeys in hamster balls returned to the iPhone and iPod touch. So far, reactions to the game have been mixed, but lean in the positive direction. The controls are much more responsive, the Wi-fi multiplayer is a welcome addition and the mini-games, while represented by "coming soon" messages, are promised to be released in a early 2010 update. As long as that update is free (which it will be) then I'm not complaining. The game is currently on sale for $9.99 at Apple's app store.

Thanks to the TouchArcade for the image and gameplay video:

Sonic Classics Collection officially announced
While I usually don't cover DS or PSP news, the Nomad Junkyard has a history of covering rereleases of Sonic the Hedgehog. This time, Sonic 1-3 & Knuckles are arriving on the Nintendo DS. What makes this rerelease unique is that it is the first time all four games have been rereleased together on a mobile platform. What more, they could very well be near-perfect versions of the Genesis classics (here's hoping).

SoA's press release:
Sonic Classic Collection™ allows fans both old and new to speed through the much loved zones of the four original Mega Drive adventures, in a bid to collect the chaos emeralds and save the world. Optimized to take full advantage of the Nintendo DS™ system, Sonic Classic Collection will feature a new save anywhere feature, a first in this original series, meaning that the games can be enjoyed anywhere, anytime! Gamers will also be given the chance to expand their knowledge with a wealth of extras including video and collectable pictures that are sure to be fan favorites.

Sonic Classic Collection™ gathers together the first four Sonic The Hedgehog adventures - Sonic The Hedgehog, Sonic The Hedgehog 2, Sonic The Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles - introducing some of the most influential Sonic titles to a whole new generation of gamers exclusively for the DS.
The American box art (bright and happy!):

The European box art (sleek and blue, hindered by the ugly gigantic "U" rating symbol):

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A Worthy Nomad Mod

While many of the Nomad mods that I've seen are little more than bizarre case modifications, Racketboy user hailrazer created a mod worthy of respect. If you're going to alter a Nomad, the best method is to alter it for the better. hailrazer picked up on two of the Nomad's weaker points and succeeded in improving them; those two points being the dated Led screen and short battery life.

hailrazer explains his process for replacing the screen:

First things first. Get rid of the old Lcd.
Open up the Nomad. You will need a security bit for the bottom/middle screw. After you open the Nomad , pull the circuit board up and you will see the Lcd. Pull it of and then pull of the lcd cable attached to the main board.

Now you just ruined your Nomad. Just kidding :)

Here is the new Lcd we will be using :
It is $50 shipped.

When we take it apart it will look like this :

Now what you want to do is get out your hot glue gun and glue the new Lcd into place. Make sure you get it centered. be aware the Lcd hole on the Nomad is slightly slanted so the Lcd will be slightly slanted when mounted.

Now it's time to solder the wires necessary to power the screen and get video to it.
You will be soldering 4 wires. 2 grounds, power, and video. the 2 ground wires go to the same spot on the Lcd's board.

Here is where the wires will be soldered to the Nomad's board :

After it is wired you will want to mount the Lcd's board on top of the Lcd. I put a small piece of paper between them to protect against shorts. You can then hot glue the 4 corners to hold it in place. :

Now put the Nomad back together. Make sure the wires are crimped anywhere, or in the way of the buttons.

Plug it in and see the new Lcd in all it's glory.

Here's a pic of what the old screen looked like:

hailrazer's images and walkthrough has been borrowed from his original post at Racketboy. I'm reposting it here out of respect for his awesome achievement. Check out the original posting for how he upgraded the battery for a life of 8.5 hours compared to the original 5.5 hours. Really impressive stuff!