quarta-feira, 8 de abril de 2015

Gotek Floppy Amiga Emulator Review - It's a Pixel THING - Ep.#44

As everyone knows, the Amiga 600 was intended to be the replacement for the long running and best seller Commodore 64, and it was supposed to be called A300. It was also considered one of the brand’s worst marketing and strategic errors. You can check my retrospective on this theme clicking on the rectangle shown on your screen.

Personally I really like the compact design of the Amiga 600 and the specs are a step up from its older brother, the Amiga 500.

First we need to get to the floppy drive disconnecting two cables and a few screws.

Now it’s time get the Gotek floppy emulator into place, pluggin’ in both cables, that came with the unit, and screws. Placing it isn’t as plug’n’play as I’ve thought that it would be. I had to make two extra holes on the Gotek so that the ones on the back of the Amiga could match. Also, and in order to get the flash drive well placed and connected to the Gotek unit, I had to break a small and thin piece of plastic. I can live with that!

Finally, about half an hour later, I was ready to test this baby! Everything seems to be connected and in place.

Next step is to download a firmware file hosted on this blog: cortexamigafloppydrive.wordpress.com

Just scroll down the main page and you’ll find a docx file that, when downloaded, you’ll have to change its extension to zip to be able to extract the SELECTOR.ADF file. The Gotek unit has already the firmware installed by the vendor on ebay from where I’ve purchased it, so, next step is to get a FAT32 formatted flash drive and copy the SELECTOR.ADF file along with some games also in ADF format.

Nowadays I just use the A600 to play games, so, I think that this solution is perfect for me and for everyone that just wants to use the Amiga as a kind of a games console. And it looks kind of awesome and futuristic, don’t you think?

Now, let’s get right into the good stuff! Games!!!

This is how we get to the main list of all files that we’ve copied to the flash drive. One advice that I can give is to rename those long files. The Gotek firmware doesn’t scroll long names. This is a problem if there’s various ADF files for one game. For example, Indiana Jones and The Fate of Atlantis the Graphic Adventure has 11 disks, 11 ADF files, I mean, and we need to shorten them up to be able to identify them and place them in the exact order in those virtual floppy drives that the Gotek emulates. So, in that particular case, we could simply rename the files to Indy Atlantis disk 1of 11 and so forth.

This game right here, Viage al Centro de la Tierra, from the Spanish developer Topo Soft, was one of my big addictions on my ZED X Spectrum back in the summer of 1989. I just love these exploration and adventure type of games.
Just before we launch another game, we need to check the Gotek’s display and place it in the DF0 position just by pressing one of the two buttons available. Then, simply reset the Amiga by pressing Control and the two Amiga keys simultaneously and we’ll get into the menu.

Now, time for a go on one of my favorite games ever, Batman the Movie.

Loading times are exactly the same. It’s just like using floppy disks, but without the hassle of changing them and completely error free.
This doesn't mean that I'll stop collecting physical Amiga games on those gorgeous big boxes. I simply want to preserve those on my shelves and avoid bad handling.

Shadow Warriors is one of the best beat-em-ups on the Amiga, an extremely well done arcade conversion.

And, who doesn’t know Shinobi? In late 80s these martial arts type of games were really popular, due to the also well received movies American Ninja, Bloodsport and Kickboxer.

Another great classic, Turrican 2. Amazing sound, amazing graphics.. what else could you ask from a videogame?

I’ve never watched the movie, but played a ton The Adams Family on the Amiga back when it was out! Such an entertaining game!

And what about Apidya? Have you played it? No? You should! It’s one of the greatest shoot’em’ups ever made and exclusive to the Amiga!

One great thing about retrogaming is that you can play games that, back then, when they were released, you’ve never had the chance to try. This is one of those examples: Ballistix! The first time I saw its cover was on a Computer & Video Games magazine, back in 1989, and I stood there, just looking at that amazing cover art. This was the first time that I’ve played it, and I enjoyed it a lot!.. I’ll certainly make a review in the future!

So, guys, what do you think of the Gotek floppy emulator? Is it worth it? Or do you prefer using floppies? Well, in my case, and as I said before, it’s great to have a flash drive filled with all my favorite Amiga games, spite continue to collect physical copies. I approve! Tell me what you think in the comments section bellow!

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