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Can't save my games and my PS1, N64, SNES and GBA games don't work.



  • Raspberry Pi 3 B+
    A microSD of 16GB with NOOBS pre-installed
    RetroPie version 4.5
    Power supply: 2.5A
    USB Device: an HDD (Blueendless) with 930GB of space
    Controller used: PS4 controller

    I’m new to the Raspberry Pi and my only goal is to make it as good of an emulator as it can get without overclocking it. I’m mostly interested in playing PS1, N64 and SNES games. I’m planning to log all troubles I run into in this post as I go along.
    So I’m running into a few problems trying to emulate games, particularly with the PS1, N64, SNES and GBA games. I also can’t save my games. So here’s the deal:

    NES games play mostly fine, although the colors seem to be “brighter or more saturated” or “using less colors” than usual on some games. Like for example, when starting Castlevania and seeing the intro scene play out: the gates to Dracula’s castle are bright red and so are the clothes on Belmont and the ground he walks on at the first screen of the game. Anyways, I’m suspecting this could be the ROM-related problem and I can still play most of them just fine so this isn’t a big problem. But it would be nice to get confirmation from someone who knows this.
    Megadrive games also play fine it seems.

    Now the problems start:
    GBA games show up, but most of them don’t work. The only ones I got to work are a Moemon Hack of Pokemon Fire Red and Emerald, Phantasy Star Collection and Dokapon Monster Hunter. I can’t play any of the Mario games, for example.

    So when playing pokemon, saving via the ingame menu doesn’t work. Saving via the Save state hotkey doesn’t work either with the error: “Task failed: save state”.
    PS1 and SNES games don’t show up at all, not even their menus in the RetroPie menu.

    So here’s what I’m thinking went wrong: I’ve put too much roms/ISO’s on my HDD. Do these get put over to the microSD and am I running into trouble, because there’s over 60G of data on the HDD and only 16G of space on the SD? Do you guys recommend me to just start fresh and format the SD and HDD again and to get a bigger microSD for my Pi?

    Any insights are most welcome!


  • Global Moderator

    @Epic_Jezzman [...]

    NES games play mostly fine, although the colors seem to be “brighter or more saturated” or “using less colors” than usual on some games. Like for example, when starting Castlevania and seeing the intro scene play out: the gates to Dracula’s castle are bright red and so are the clothes on Belmont and the ground he walks on at the first screen of the game. Anyways, I’m suspecting this could be the ROM-related problem and I can still play most of them just fine so this isn’t a big problem. But it would be nice to get confirmation from someone who knows this.

    Are you comparing the colors to .. ? I think NES emulators (lr-fceumm or lr-nestopia) have a settings to change the color palette - try changing it from the core options in the emulator.

    Megadrive games also play fine it seems.

    Now the problems start:
    GBA games show up, but most of them don’t work. The only ones I got to work are a Moemon Hack of Pokemon Fire Red and Emerald, Phantasy Star Collection and Dokapon Monster Hunter. I can’t play any of the Mario games, for example.

    Depending on the emulators used, you might need the GBA BIOS - see the docs. What emulator are you using for GBA ?

    So when playing pokemon, saving via the ingame menu doesn’t work. Saving via the Save state hotkey doesn’t work either with the error: “Task failed: save state”.
    PS1 and SNES games don’t show up at all, not even their menus in the RetroPie menu.

    I trust you transferred the ROMs to the corresponding folders - make sure the ROMs/CD Images have the right file extension - see the docs on each emulator on the format needed.

    For the saving part - make sure the ROM folders have the proper permissions and the pi user can write to them. If in doubt reset the permissions from the RetroPie-Setup script.

    So here’s what I’m thinking went wrong: I’ve put too much roms/ISO’s on my HDD. Do these get put over to the microSD and am I running into trouble, because there’s over 60G of data on the HDD and only 16G of space on the SD? Do you guys recommend me to just start fresh and format the SD and HDD again and to get a bigger microSD for my Pi?

    You need to give some clue about how you're using your HDD - is it to store the ROMs only, or you installed the whole system on the disc ?

    Any insights are most welcome!



  • @mitu
    The N64-rom files all end on .Z64 with only a couple ending on .N64
    The GBA files all end on .GBA
    The PSX folder is full of .BIN + .ECM + .CUE + .SUB files
    The SNES files should be fine too, because I already put those on my SNES Classic and they work.

    The HDD is just for storing roms and savefiles or that's what I'm trying to accomplish.
    I just wrote RetroPie to the 16G microSD using Etcher. Then I put it in the Pi and hooked up my HDD to the Pi to get the folders (configs, bios and roms).

    As to the emulator i use for gba, it should be the standard one that comes with RetroPie. I haven't added any emulators or anything like that.

    I've put the following BIOS in the BIOS map:

    gba_bios.bin
    scph1001.bin
    scph5000.bin
    scph5500.bin
    scph5501.bin
    scph5502.bin


  • Global Moderator

    @Epic_Jezzman said in Can't save my games and my PS1, N64, SNES and GBA games don't work.:

    I just wrote RetroPie to the 16G microSD using Etcher. Then I put it in the Pi and hooked up my HDD to the Pi to get the folders (configs, bios and roms).

    There are 2 modes of operation w.r.t. USB connected to the Pi - transfer and running ROMs - which one did you use ? Did you create a retropie-mount folder on the disc ?

    As to the emulator i use for gba, it should be the standard one that comes with RetroPie. I haven't added any emulators or anything like that.

    I think that's lr-mgba - it's shown when you launch the game on the Runcommand launch screen. Are you sure the ROM is ok ? Get the log file (/dev/shm/runcommand.log) after you launch the game, then post its contents here, surrounded by code blocks (```).



  • Hi there,

    So I left my Raspberry Pi alone for a month and when I came back to it I started fresh. I think the problem was with my HDD.

    So I think my HDD was previously formatted to exFAT file system. The only options I had were NTFS and exFAT. I found this person on youtube called Eta Prime and his videos were a big help, especially this one:

    It explains how to format your drive to FAT32

    I flashed the image to the SD again and formatted my HDD to FAT32 and added the "retropie-mount" folder as shown in the video.

    Then I searched some more videos on his channel of which bios were needed for the different emulators and how to add the games.

    I found out how to "unECM" the ECM files from my PlayStation games and I'd say at the moment about 90% of the games work and I can save using the save state feature + via the in-game save mechanics.

    The emulators I have used up to this point are: GB, GBC, GBA, NES, SNES, N64, Megadrive and PS1.

    So yes, I'd say the problems are now solved. Maybe one more thing I'd like to try is activating my RetroAchievements account so I can earn achievements on some of the games. I got it to work previously, but I don't know how anymore because it's been over a month ago.

    Big shout out to Eta Prime. Check his channel here:

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_0CVCfC_3iuHqmyClu59Uw



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