Forgotten Old Games * Special – Sega Saturn Action Replay 4M Plus
Hi everyone! Today is a very special day! I´ve received an awesome package last week and in this package was… A brand new Sega Saturn Action Replay Cartridge!!!
I was very excited so I decided to review it, after all it´s an important accessory that every Sega Saturn owner must have!
First I´ll talk about Sega Saturn´s expansion cartridges.
Some Sega Saturn owners probably have done this question “What is this cartridge port in my Sega Saturn!?” That port is in fact an expansion port for the Saturn and it has multiple functionalities.
Memory Expansion Cartridges
The Sega Saturn doesn´t has any kind of memory card like the Sony´s Playstation so all save date is stored in an internal battery. This battery has some vantage over the Playstation memory card, as you don´t need to buy it separately from the console and the access time is very fast. However, it do have some disadvantages too. This battery don´t have a large amount of space to store data and some Saturn games needs a large amount of space to store its save data. Nights into the Dreams is a good example, this game requires a large amount of space for its save data. Another known problem is that when the battery becomes depleted you´ll lost all your save data. In order to fix those issues Sega made cartridges that can back up data from the internal battery allowing players to simply backup old save data and delete it from the internal battery. This can be very useful to regain free space on Saturn internal battery.
Ram Expansion Cartridges
The Sega Saturn has 2MB of internal ram memory and many games, specially 2D fighting games from Arcade like Neo Geo and CPS2 boards, requires much more than that to run decently. So many Saturn games has the option of using RAM cartridges to enhance it´s performance drastically improving loading times, animation frames and even frame rate. Other games simply doesn´t run without the ram upgrade such as X-men vs Street Fighter. There was two types of cartridges, the 2MB and 4MB RAM ones. Thanks to those cartridges, the Sega Saturn was able to reproduce flawlessly most of the Arcade games from it´s time.
Here you can check a list of Sega Saturn games that use some kind of RAM expansion. If you are still not fully convinced, you can see in this video the difference that the extra RAM can make in games that support it as an add-on.
These where the two “official” functions of the Sega Saturn expansion port. However, Action Replay guys thought this duality wasn’t enough and did the ultimate Cartridge… The Action Replay 4M Plus!!!
The Action Replay 4M Plus allow players to:
• Backup save data from Sega Saturn internal battery.
• Provide de 2-4MB RAM cartridge function.
• Enable a list of cheat codes for every single game of Sega Saturn´s library, something very similar to the Playstation´s Game Shark.
• Disables the region lock so NTSC-U, NTSC-J and even PAL games to be played on any Saturn!
The only game that I couldn´t play on my Action Replay 4M Plus was “The King of Fighters 95” because that game needs a special ROM cartridge. This awesome piece of hardware is essential to anyone who has a Sega Saturn and it´s relativity cheap, I found one of those for 30 bucks on e-bay.
So if you has a Sega Saturn and dosen´t have an Action Replay 4M Plus what are you waiting for!?