Turbografx 16 Controller Repair

Turbografx 16 Controller Repair

Here’s a quick and simple repair for those of you that find your Turbografx 16 or PCEngine controllers to be worn out or too stiff.

I have found over the last while that the d-pads and buttons are extraordinarily stiff on most TG16 controllers I’ve used. I’ve had a NES controller like that too. They become really painful on the thumbs after playing for a few minutes. I’m not sure if this is the same with all TG16 controllers, or I’ve just got unlucky with stiff ones.

Turns out the NES silicone pads fit almost perfectly into the TG16 controllers, so you can swap some official NES ones in, or if you don’t feel like modifying authentic NES pads, just pick some up cheap replacements on eBay.

I bought some for $1 a set, with free shipping.

The TG16 dpad silicone is split into two pieces from the factory, but is almost exactly the same as the NES one.

Replacement NES silicone on top of the TG16 silicone
TG16 silicone on top, and a good demonstration of the modification you need to do. Two tiny cuts with an exacto knife around the hole, and it fits perfectly.
The buttons side by side. These are a drop-in replacement, without modification.
All back together and feeling much nicer!

I hope this helps! This is the ebay ad I bought the pads from, and I am very satisfied with them.

Good luck!

Choice Paralysis

Choice Paralysis

If you’re anything like me, then you enjoy buying games with the intent of playing them now or later. A common result of that, is that you end up with a large library of games to play, and often are unsure of what to play next.

“So what is it?”

Overchoice or Choice Overload is a cognitive process in which people have a difficult time making a decision when faced with many options. Overchoice takes place when the advantages of diversity and individualization are canceled by the complexity of buyer’s decision-making process.

Here are my tips on staying focused and making decisions about what to play next. Please add your own in the comments!

  1. Adopt a “Finishing Games” mentality. If you’re enjoying a game, work on finishing it before moving on. I enjoy the feeling of “going back to work” on a particularly tough game to do some more attempts at finishing it. Looking at you, retro 8-bit games. Obviously this shouldn’t be a hard and fast rule, but I find that once a game is officially completed, it really helps me to move on. You can put the game away, and look towards a new title to get engrossed in. This is a great prevention method for the problem of being half-way through a ton of different games.

  2. Keep a category in your spreadsheet (or other method of game/backlog tracking) for “Upcoming Games”. If you’re particularly excited to play a game you have, but don’t want it to get lost in the masses of your backlog, put it in a special category created for games you want to play soon. This greatly helps with paralysis of choice when you’re looking at 10 or 20, versus a couple hundred.

  3. When faced with Choice Overload, try having a friend choose for you. The funny thing about Choice Overload is: the effect is actually reversed when making a decision for someone else. Having a friend choose from your “Upcoming Games” list will ensure they pick something you’re already interested in. Your friend will also likely choose something they enjoy, or have completed themselves. This will have the added benefit of giving you a good conversation topic while you play through the game.

  4. Start using a good tracking or backlog tool to keep track of your completed games. Adding to that number of completed games becomes it’s own thing, and you’ll want to go back to certain games to check them off the list. I use backloggery, but there are tons of alternatives as well.

  5. Use a competitive multiplayer game as filler. Find a great multiplayer game that’s “never ending” to fill in gaps in your single player gameplay. This also works great with open ended games like Minecraft or Cities: Skylines etc. I try to keep to one competitive game at a time, so I can focus on getting better at one game instead of many. This keeps it interesting for longer, as there’s always a new rank to try and attain. My current game is Rocket League, and I’ve put in over 1500 hours!

  6. Play something that puts you out of your comfort zone. Sometimes what you need is a change of pace. If you find yourself looking at the list of 40 platformers you own, and wondering why you can’t make a choice, it may help to play something you’ve never gotten into. Try a rhythm game, or a genre-mix game, or maybe an art game like Mario Paint. Devil’s Crush on TG16 is a great example here. Break up that monotony.
That’s all I have for now. Good luck out there, and please add your thoughts and tips!
Amiga Buying Guide in 2019

Amiga Buying Guide in 2019

Here are some general issues to look for when buying an Amiga in 2019. Hopefully someone will find this information useful when looking for Amiga systems.

  1. Some Amigas have a clock battery that is prone to leakage, spilling acid on your precious system. Make sure you get a good photo of the area around the clock battery to assess the damage before you buy. All of these systems will have leaked by now, so it’s a matter of how bad the corrosion is.
    • A1000 = No battery
    • A500 = No battery
    • A500+ = Bad clock battery
    • A600 = Bad Clock battery
    • A1200 = Bad Clock battery
    • A2000 = Bad Clock battery
    • A3000 = Bad Clock battery
    • A4000 = Bad Clock battery

  2. RAM expansions are also a concern, as they are VERY common, and often have clock batteries that you need to know about. Typically if the clock battery on the RAM expansion has leaked, you can just take out the expansion, and the system will be fine. Whether that expansion can be fixed or not depends on how far gone it is.

  3. Some Amiga systems have newer SMD style capacitors that are prone to leakage. These will not be as large of an issue as the clock batteries, but they will leak, and they will cause damage. These systems are getting to the age now, that’s it’s near impossible to find one that has not leaked.
    • A1000 = Good capacitors
    • A500 = Good capacitors
    • A500+ = Good capacitors
    • A600 = Bad SMD style capacitors
    • A1200 = Bad SMD style capacitors
    • A2000 = Good capacitors
    • A3000 = Good capacitors
    • A4000 = Bad SMD style capacitors
Here are some photos I’ve taken of some issues with the systems myself or friends have bought.
No-name Amiga 500 RAM expansion - The worst I’ve seen. I didn’t even try to revive this guy. You can see that the PCB is actually bulging from all the corrosion.
Commodore A501 RAM expansion for the Amiga 500 - This looks like it will work once it’s cleaned up.
Amiga 2000 Battery Leakage - Looks bad, but turned out good.
Amiga 2000 Battery Leakage - Very nice shape on this one, as little leaking as I’ve seen.
Amiga 2000 Battery Replacement - Cleaned up nicely, removed the 68000 and cleaned the green corrosion off the pins, and installed a new button-style battery.
Amiga 2000 Battery Leakage - Destroyed 68000 socket, pin sockets completely missing. Replacement socket needed. See all the green corrosion spread all over.

Hope this helps, happy hunting everyone!