| paleface [sys=NGP; cat=Hardware; loc=NA] |
|It's a NGP, without the C! Some observations inside.|
Today turned out to be a surprisingly good day: I wound up with two new consoles, rather unexpectedly. Of course, I haven't touched the PS2 yet because I had to run my new (well okay, $30 used) NGP (that's the black and white one :p) though its paces. Some observations (most of these are old news to many, of course, but I like making observations so nyaa):
- When the screen is off, it's black! Black as her cheatin' heart! Err... I mean, the screen is dark when the unit is off, instead of light grey like the NGPC.
- When I first turned it on to check the utilities the screen was so dark I could barely see anything. Nooo! It broke! Oh wait, its got a Contrast nob down on the bottom. Ahh, much better! And you can twiddle the nob to alternately wash out or black out the picture. Whee! Okay, it isn't that fun. Still, its quite different from the always-adjusted NGPC, and a bit of fun to fiddle with. Sure you can beat R-1 with the knob at the middle setting but what about when some evildoer turns it... ALL THE WAY UP?!?!? Now there's a challenge...
- The utilities (horoscope, calendar, etc) look and sound exactly like the ones on the NGPC except that they're in black and white of course.
- The physical unit is an interesting amalgamation of the NGPC and the NNGPC: it has the exact same height as the NNGPC but with the slightly blockier corners of the old NGPC. It uses 2 AAA batteries instead of 2 AA batteries but the main battery and watch battery hatches are pretty much identical between the NGP and the NGPC. Oh, the serial number is 0045135. :)
- Dimension comparison: about half a centimeter narrower than the NNGPC, but the exact same height. Its about two or three millimeters thinner front to back than the NNGPC which actually makes a significant difference. The thickness from the front back to the point where the cartridge is housed is the same between the two, but the rest of the back of the NGP is flush with that central panel, whereas the NGPC and NNGPC have thicker sort of handles on either side. Also, the screen is flush with the rest of the front of the unit rather than recessed like on the NGPC. So you have two perfectly smooth sides and a slimmer profile--rather nice for slipping in your pocket! Not as easy to grip for a long period of game playing though, I would think.
- Weight comparison: measurably lighter than the NNGPC (an ounce less? heck I don't know), and of course much lighter than the NGPC.
- The buttons are shiny silver, oOoo! Mine's a Platinum Blue model, by the way.
- It doesn't have anything printed above the top of the screen, whereas the NGPC has screen specs printed there.
- Lots of screen blur in KoF R-1, instead of the crystal-sharp NGPC screen. This produces a rather cool sort of anti-aliasing/motion-blur effect, so the picture and movement look smoother but small details and quick motions are MUCH harder to distinguish. For instance, when the screen pans back and forth over the stage background before a fight in R-1, the background image pretty much becomes a column of lumpy horizontal streaks.
- Let's see what happens to my games when they go in:
KOF R-1 (entry 362): well, same as in the NGPC since this is a B&W game
Ganbare Neo-Poke Kun (entry 407): you hear Ganbare shriek, then see a nice full-tone rendering of the dude saying a 1/2 screen-size bubble full of Japanese characters. You go, boy!
Pac-Man (entry 336): plays just fine but looks weird since Pac-Man and the ghosts and dots are black, and the maze background is white (well, the lightest grey the screen can generate). It's Nega-Pac-Man!
MotM (entry 421): Hah! It's a picture of an embarrased Jubei in a business suit saying "This soft is only for NEOGEO POCKET COLOR. It cannot be used with the NEOGEO POCKET." Genjuro looks at him with a concerned expression from behind.
KoF R-2 (entry 415): Plays fine in greyscale.
Puzzle Link 2 (entry 398): Holy $@#$@! The first time I powered this one up, it shut the power down after the NGP logo. Powered back on and found the system memory cleared, so I had to re-enter the language, time and date. After that, get a screen with a big ! in the background saying "THIS GAME CAN ONLY BE USED WITH THE NEOGEO COLOR UNIT." Hmm. I wonder if I had the cartridge in loose or something... you wouldn't think that would reset the memory though.
SRM (entry 395): A picture of all the girls smiling (just their heads on screen) with Japanese characters printed across the bottom.
Dynamite Slugger (entry 393): black screen with music, says "Warning DYNAMITE SLUGGER IS NEOGEO POCKET-COLOR ONLY GAME-SOFT." Stupid game-soft!
CFC2 (entry 425): white screen with two lines of little Japanese characters. What a rip.
CFC (entry 424): appears to play fine in greyscale. Cool!
Metal Slug 2nd Mission (entry 410): white screen saying "METAL SLUG 2ND MISSION Sorry. This cartridge works exclusively with NEOGEO POCKET COLOR. This cartridge is NOT for use with the NEOGEO POCKET." Stupid game-soft!
Neo-Geo Cup '98 Plus (entry 399): plays fine in greyscale (well, blurry).
Fatal Fury 1st Contact (entry 422): plays fine in greyscale.
Shanghai Mini (entry 396): plays fine in greyscale, though telling the pieces apart isn't as easy without the color differences.
Metal Slug 1st Mission (entry 409): plays in greyscale, hard to see the little bullets.
Faselei! (entry 406): whoa, didn't expect this later game to play in greyscale. Looks pretty nice, too.
Mahjong Anywhere (entry 397): plays in greyscale but really hard to scan the tiles quickly.
Puyo Pop (entry 394): REALLY hard to tell the two middle shades of puyos apart, especially since they blur as they drop fast on higher difficulty levels. Blindingly difficult.
Neo 21 (entry 404): not much stuff animating around the screen so it actually works well, and that dealer's voice is as sexy as ever.
Sonic Pocket whatever (entry 408): dark grey screen saying "THIS SOFTWARE CARTRIDGE IS AVAILABLE ONLY FOR NEOGEO POCKET COLOR".
Pocket Tennis Color (entry 402): lots of blur on the ball but you can actually see the ball's dark shadow pretty well.
Gals Fighters (entry 401): "THIS IS FOR "NEOGEO POCKET COLOR" ONLY".
Rockman B&F (entry 419): very difficult to see your bullets against the grey backgrounds. Well let's just say it: you can't see 'em, effectively.
Last Blade (UK) (entry 423): Akari on a black background saying "THIS SOFTWARE CARTRIDGE IS AVAILABLE ONLY FOR NEOGEO POCKET COLOR" while music plays and several characters take turns appearing on the screen and using several frames of their sprite animations to appear tired.
Big Bang Pro Wrestling (entry 420): Jazzy music with big black lettering on a white background saying "This Soft is only for NEOGEO POCKET COLOR." Silly soft!
As you can see, its a non-stop party when you add a NGP to the mix.