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 Post subject: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2019 6:41 pm 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
For the life of me I can't get the Dreamcast USA light gun to work on ANY CRT monitor/TV, with any degree of accuracy, on any game, via any connection method, in either 480p or 480i. Are the Mad Catz Dream Blaster light guns (the defacto licensed gun for DC in USA) simply defective? To show you what lengths I've gone to get this to work:

I've tried 3x Dreamcasts (1x GDEMU, 1x w/ real/actual discs, 1x burned discs). 3x Mad Catz Dream Blaster lightguns (1x brand new sealed in box). I've tried in 480p on 2x Sony CRT PC monitors via VGA through Toro, and RGBS on several pro multiformat CRT monitors: BVM-D20, PVM-20L5, PVM-14L5, and Panasonic DT-M3050W. Tried 2x 4:3 HD consumer CRT's (via RGBHV to YPbPr converter which works with PS2 light gun games perfectly) - want to say Sony HS420 models. About a dozen standard definition PVM and consumer TV's over official and aftermarket composite cables. Tried all different brightness levels. Still HORRIBLE accuracy (makes games VERY hard to play).

Videos of the type of problems I've been having (and again, I've tried this on literally 20 different CRT's, this is just a couple examples):

YouTube Video on 480p CRT monitor, showing "out of screen" error and horrible shaky crosshairs.

YouTube Video trying the same in 480i, shaky AND inverted aim

YouTube video showing composite (480i) on a SD CRT, completely shaky crosshairs.

YouTube video showing how stable Guncon2 is on PS2 (I also have 2-3/each of these other light guns which also work flawless: NES zapper, PS1 Nyko, PS1 Namco Guncon, PS1 Konami, Saturn Virtual Gun, OG Xbox Pelican, OG Xbox Mad Catz light guns).


What the heck am I missing? Only think I can think of is the Mad Catz Dream Blasters, which Sega licensed, are all defective and never really worked properly. A sample size of 3 is pretty decent so at least 1 should work... If I'm not missing something stupid, what other guns can I try? Aren't the Sega made ones from EU/Japan region locked? Can I bypass that on a NTSC console with GDEMU? Is this accuracy just how it is on the DC? (REALLY hope not...).


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:33 pm 


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There 2 or more revisions of the Madcatz lightgun pcb.

One uses a crappy design, 2 leg diode instead of 3.
That might be your issue, I could never get that board to work right when i tried modding them.

This is the good board for reference.

Spoiler: show
Image


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:40 pm 


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Location: Australia
If someone was smart enough they could hex edit the DC NA titles that dont allow Jap guns to work and make them work.
Much easier than intercepting the controllers identity im sure. Would be nice to use official guns on everything.

Say someone did want to intercept and modify the guns regions heres something that may help.

Code:
Table 7-2 

Setting bits for destination

Destination   Setting bit
North American region   DES0=‘1’
Japan region   DES1=‘1’
Asia region   DES2=‘1’
European region   DES3=‘1’
Reserved region 1   DES4=‘1’
Reserved region 2   DES5=‘1’
Reserved region 3   DES6=‘1’
Reserved region 4   DES7=‘1’


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2019 10:30 pm 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
I'll check out the board in these if I get some spare time. I take it the boards will be easily identifiable as being different from your pic if they're the bad type? (or any specific areas to pay attention to?)/

And if I was going to use the EU/JP style gun I was thinking something similar to the Sega Saturn Region Patcher Gold program I used to use might come in handy...if there's a Dreamcast version of something like that. Even hex editing like I do to change OG Xbox games from 4:3 to 16:9 would be doable if somebody could figure out what exactly to change for the region (which is above my pay grade).


More over though, I'm just trying to see if other peoples experiences mirror mine. I mean, in one of those videos the crosshairs are going in the opposite direction from the gun....and I've tried multiples of consoles, guns, and CRT's so it's just uncanny how crappy these are. I could understand if you need a bonafide VGA PC Monitor for 480p (as I've been trying on multiformat 480p-compatible PVM/BVM's as well), but it makes no sense that even over composite in 480i 3x guns aren't working correctly either, on multiple consoles...


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2019 11:01 pm 


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That Madcatz gun of mine works sweet on a multi sync Sony PC CRT.

The other one jittered and took off left or right if you twisted your wrist.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 2:29 am 


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I heard the JP gun is better (but most US gun games blocked it), but the actual Naomi machines in the arcade require calibration and still seemed inaccurate. MadCatz gun seemed to be ok for me, aside from the odd aiming reticle, though.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 6:50 am 



Joined: 14 Feb 2005
Posts: 693
Location: Los Angeles, CA
I had two MadCatz guns back in the day and they worked just fine - obviously didn't have the extra hardware and accuracy of the GunCon, but they seemed pretty comparable to the Saturn Virtua Gun. Like many, I was beyond pissed when the Japanese DC guns didn't come to America, and the MadCatz design was distinctly worse and less comfortable, but performance seemed similar.

I don't remember if the guns worked correctly on progressive-scan or HD sets. Wasn't that a limitation of basic lightgun design? My use was all on SD sets.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 2:19 pm 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
Syntax wrote:
There 2 or more revisions of the Madcatz lightgun pcb.

One uses a crappy design, 2 leg diode instead of 3.


I opened up 2x of mine (3rd my friend has) which seem to be identical to each other, and the board does seem to be different than yours (the writing at least), and only 2 legs on the diode:

https://i.imgur.com/ZyDMhBM.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/AtLLvM6.jpg


I ordered a NOS Interact Starfire Lightblaster for $20 which a couple forum people said they like - we'll see if that works properly. Still hesitant about ordering the Sega made one since there's those limitations on which games it can play (and don't know if there's anything I can do on the GDEMU to hack the rom or whatnot).


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:45 pm 


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Yep that's the one, the diode wrapped in a white plastic shroud, had that much trouble with it i kind of stopped my conversion project.
Atleast the other good model works with a ps2 diode.

To me the cases seem identical so its really hard to tell which revision youll end up with when buying Madcatz


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 7:13 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 870
My understanding is that you can use the official Sega Japan light gun on the American dreamcast as long as you use (burned) Japanese ISO's. i.e. it's the software that locks out the jap light gun, not the console itself.

I own a lot of light guns and I have yet to find a single 3rd party gun that is accurate enough to enjoy using. They all seem to suffer from shakey crosshair syndrome while all my Namco guns are perfect.

The differences I can see between the official Namco guns and everything else are small. These are:
Lens quality, sensor grounding and Namco boards seem to have an extra resistor (on arcade models).

I have the newer design Namco sensor board for my Time Crisis arcade gun and it uses a 2 leg sensor. It still has a 3rd ground wire though. But, 2 leg sensors are not necessarily an issue.

I have seen the issue with some (otherwise accurate) arcade guns recently too. This made me think that aging caps or physical damage is the cause.

Has anyone here successfully fixed a lightgun with shakey crosshairs to make it as accurate as the official Guncon 2? If so, how?


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 8:22 pm 


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See that chip on the sensor board? the other (better) revision doesnt use that it just uses some resistors/transistors.
For the most part the rest of the gun PCB is the same.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:03 am 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
Thought I would update. Got that BNIB Interact Starfire Lightblaster in today, and SAME EXACT issues as before. Tried HoTD 2 this time, and Death Crimson OX, in both 480p and 480i, and during calibration couldn't even get the 2nd bottom right target to hit no matter what I did (shooting dozens of times aiming all around the place usually lets me go for the 3rd, center target...where it's still off target, wobbles around, and says 'gun pointed off screen' all the time still...).

Also got a THIRD Dreamcast in a trade this week...same problems with that one as well (tried original Virtua Cop disk and official Composite cables on a consumer SD TV).

Here's a video if anybody cares (which happens to be with the Madcatz, but same issues, as always, with the new Interact one too): https://youtu.be/pqk2IjHs6_A

And caption: Let's see...I'm at 3x DC's (1x w/ GDEMU, 1x actual disc, 1x burned CD-R), 4x lightguns (2x BNIB, 2x different types), 3x different cables (TORO w/ SCART and VGA, 2x Composite), both in 480i and 480p, on over a DOZEN different CRT's (both consumer and professional, SD and HD)... STILL can't get light gun games to work on Dreamcast....what am I doing wrong?

Image



**EDIT**** And I just ordered the official, like really official, Sega made Japan light gun...off to download all these light gun games in Japanese (unless somebody knows how to region mod them as they say the software is what locks you from using the JP light gun).


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:45 pm 


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Dochartaigh wrote:
**EDIT**** And I just ordered the official, like really official, Sega made Japan light gun...off to download all these light gun games in Japanese (unless somebody knows how to region mod them as they say the software is what locks you from using the JP light gun).

The official Dreamcast light gun also works fine with the European PAL releases, since the official gun was also released in Europe (Although you may have to 'force' PAL House of the Dead 2 to run in 60Hz mode)

<EDIT> Have you tried adjusting the brightness and contrast before calibrating? Some forum posts suggest that may help with calibration issues.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 3:14 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 870
Increasing the brightness and contrast on screen will help a light gun register but it will do nothing to help accuracy issues.

I bought so many third party recoil guns trying to find one that was accurate enough to tolerate but they all suck. The official Namco guns on the PS1 and PS2 are the only accurate light guns for home use.

My Guncon 2 is more accurate than my Time Crisis arcade gun. They really are superb. I love light gun games but I didn't even bother buying a gun for my Dreamcast because no decent ones are available.

The best bet, IMO, is to copy the Syntax mod to use an official Namco gun with the Dreamcast.

With wingun drivers the GC2 can also be used in Windows with HOD4 in Teknoparrot.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 3:32 pm 


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My mod for the DC gun is only as good as the original gun itself. All im doing is switching up the receptor diodes really.
Plus it gets expensive trying to find the right gun that works with it, I only have one working so far but its fine on a PC CRT.

DC lightgun gaming is laggy in general and I gave up on it.
Probably something to do with the fact the gun doesn't have direct access to sync it just plugs into the controller port.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 10:24 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 870
Syntax wrote:
My mod for the DC gun is only as good as the original gun itself. All im doing is switching up the receptor diodes really.
Plus it gets expensive trying to find the right gun that works with it, I only have one working so far but its fine on a PC CRT.

DC lightgun gaming is laggy in general and I gave up on it.
Probably something to do with the fact the gun doesn't have direct access to sync it just plugs into the controller port.


That's good to know. I'll stick to the PS2 and PC for light gun gaming.

It's interesting that using the Namco GC2 sensor board with the DC light gun pcb makes no difference to the accuracy. It suggests that light gun accuracy has less to do with the sensor / diode quality and more to do with the electronics and circuit design for everything else.

I doubt the direct sync connection with the Namco guns is the answer either. All 3rd party PS2 and PS1 light guns connect to the same composite video line and they all suck. So, Namco's secret source is either in the GC2 chip or the game software (as there is nothing else on the board).

It's a shame Sega put in so little effort. They make at least as many arcade light gun games as Namco and yet they were incapable of making a semi decent home light gun. Perhaps it's because most of their arcade titles used a CCD / IR gun with sensors around the screen. They never learned to make a decent real light gun.

Maybe the answer to to play HOD3 on the DC or Naomi emulator with an official Namco GC2 and Wingun drivers. Or even an Act Labs gun.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:47 am 



Joined: 19 Jul 2017
Posts: 1483
Classicgamer wrote:
Maybe the answer to to play HOD3 on the DC or Naomi emulator with an official Namco GC2 and Wingun drivers. Or even an Act Labs gun.

You could always try HotD 2 and/or 3 on Xbox.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 1:15 am 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
HotD 2 and 3 is covered on OG Xbox (and works great)
Death Crimson OX I just found out there's a PS2 JP-only version I can download and will have to try (no 480p though)
Virtua Cop 2 I can play on Saturn

I don't think there's any other option for Death Crimson 2 or Confidential Mission though (console-wise at least).


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:18 am 


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So Silent Scope is the only horrible game on OGXbox and the HOTD series works fine?

Knowing how crap SilentScope works is the one thing holding me back from getting a set of guns.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 3:14 am 



Joined: 14 Feb 2005
Posts: 693
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Pretty sure the gun for Silent Scope was a one-off and unrelated to the other games on the system anyway. If you're interested in HotD and whatever else was on there, go for it.

The nice thing on the Xbox is that the guns were all sketchy third-party, with varying designs. You could get some real nice-looking arcade style guns, black ones, realistic ones, whatever - none of the usual censorship for the US market. And all the ones I've tried worked fine.

The real treat, if you go for it, is that a modded Xbox will run Virtua Cop 3 - never otherwise released. Now that is definitely worthwhile.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 3:31 am 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
Syntax wrote:
So Silent Scope is the only horrible game on OGXbox and the HOTD series works fine?

Knowing how crap SilentScope works is the one thing holding me back from getting a set of guns.


Silent Scope is a POS - plain and simple. HoTD 3 (which when you beat it unlocks HoTD 2) is completely playable, very accurate, and just a lot of fun to play (i mean, it's corny as hell, but most of these light gun game are anyway). I have a pair of the green Mad Catz guns which are rock solid all the way around.

Sidenote: somebody on this forum (forget who) swears left and right that you can play the OG Xbox light gun games in 480p, and I don't know if they're smoking crack or what, but I've never, ever gotten that to work myself (even took a video to prove it lol).


Bummer is there's only like ONE other light gun game for the OG Xbox - Starsky and Hutch, so it's otherwise a waste light-gun wise (never modded my Xbox to play Virtua Cop 3).


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 4:15 am 


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You can only play half of vcop3 with guns and they have to be sensor type I'm pretty sure.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 3:46 pm 



Joined: 19 Jul 2017
Posts: 1483
Dochartaigh wrote:
Sidenote: somebody on this forum (forget who) swears left and right that you can play the OG Xbox light gun games in 480p, and I don't know if they're smoking crack or what, but I've never, ever gotten that to work myself (even took a video to prove it lol).

Xbox light gun games should be perfectly playable in 480p, because the fifth wire on the controller ports is a 15kHz composite sync line (and always 15kHz, regardless of output resolution) specifically for light guns.

Dochartaigh wrote:
Bummer is there's only like ONE other light gun game for the OG Xbox - Starsky and Hutch, so it's otherwise a waste light-gun wise (never modded my Xbox to play Virtua Cop 3).

I haven't yet played Starsky and Hutch, but the concept of co-op where one person drives while the other person shoots with the light gun seems interesting.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 4:55 pm 


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nmalinoski wrote:
Xbox light gun games should be perfectly playable in 480p, because the fifth wire on the controller ports is a 15kHz composite sync line (and always 15kHz, regardless of output resolution) specifically for light guns.

I have heard this mentioned a few times now, but has anyone actually checked with a scope to confirm that the composite sync on the Xbox controller ports is always 15kHz, regardless of the video mode?


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:50 pm 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
Link83 wrote:
nmalinoski wrote:
Xbox light gun games should be perfectly playable in 480p, because the fifth wire on the controller ports is a 15kHz composite sync line (and always 15kHz, regardless of output resolution) specifically for light guns.

I have heard this mentioned a few times now, but has anyone actually checked with a scope to confirm that the composite sync on the Xbox controller ports is always 15kHz, regardless of the video mode?


I think people can check all they want...but just try it out in person and see if it ACTUALLY works. This was pretty much the same deal as the Dreamcast for me – i.e. I tried multiple OG Xbox's, multiple connection types, multiple guns, multiple CRT 480p tv's and monitors and I've still never gotten it to work....would LOVE it to...but so far no-go.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 7:00 pm 


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Umm why would it work at all? A forced 15k signal to the guns and a 31k signal on screen?

DC works a treat on a multiscan Sony VGA CRT monitor.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 8:36 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 870
Dochartaigh wrote:
HotD 2 and 3 is covered on OG Xbox (and works great)
Death Crimson OX I just found out there's a PS2 JP-only version I can download and will have to try (no 480p though)
Virtua Cop 2 I can play on Saturn

I don't think there's any other option for Death Crimson 2 or Confidential Mission though (console-wise at least).


I have a Japanese Virtua Cop 1 and 2 disc for my PS2. It's far better than the Saturn version because of how great the GC2 gun is. Saturn light guns are almost as disappointing as the DC variants.

You can play Death Crimson OX (which I believe is DC3) on the PS2.

For anything that was exclusive to the Dreamcast you can usually play the emulated Naomi (or DC) version on a PC. I know some people here don't like emulation but when it comes to light gun games, it's worth it to use an accurate gun. They are no fun without one.

Check out how well the arcade HOD2 works with a PC and Demul:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCvRt-uApQo

I keep getting tempted to try the original Xbox light gun but there are so few gun games on that system. Does the Xbox have any accurate light gun controllers or is it the same issue as with
the Dreamcast?


Last edited by Classicgamer on Sun Aug 18, 2019 8:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 8:47 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 870
Dochartaigh wrote:
Syntax wrote:
So Silent Scope is the only horrible game on OGXbox and the HOTD series works fine?

Knowing how crap SilentScope works is the one thing holding me back from getting a set of guns.


Silent Scope is a POS - plain and simple. HoTD 3 (which when you beat it unlocks HoTD 2) is completely playable, very accurate, and just a lot of fun to play (i mean, it's corny as hell, but most of these light gun game are anyway). I have a pair of the green Mad Catz guns which are rock solid all the way around.

Sidenote: somebody on this forum (forget who) swears left and right that you can play the OG Xbox light gun games in 480p, and I don't know if they're smoking crack or what, but I've never, ever gotten that to work myself (even took a video to prove it lol).


Bummer is there's only like ONE other light gun game for the OG Xbox - Starsky and Hutch, so it's otherwise a waste light-gun wise (never modded my Xbox to play Virtua Cop 3).



Silent Scope was never that great in the arcades either. It just had that cool lcd scope which had novelty value. The arcade wasn't even a light gun game. It used a directional gun. I think they could have done a lot better with the home version. I like to use the right type of gun where possible and a couple of pots doesn't cost much.

Also, little LCD screens for the scope are easily cheap enough for a consumer gun. They could have made something awesome and then used the gun scope for lots of other games but... we got a pile of sh*t instead, as usual...


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 9:07 pm 



Joined: 14 Feb 2005
Posts: 693
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Classicgamer wrote:
Also, little LCD screens for the scope are easily cheap enough for a consumer gun.


Not back in 2000 they wouldn't have been.


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 Post subject: Re: Dreamcast LightGuns HORRIBLE ACCURACY
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:31 pm 



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 997
Classicgamer wrote:
I have a Japanese Virtua Cop 1 and 2 disc for my PS2. It's far better than the Saturn version because of how great the GC2 gun is. Saturn light guns are almost as disappointing as the DC variants.


I forgot I had that EU rom of 'Virtua Cop: Elite Edition' loaded on my PS2 for Virtua Cop 1 and 2. How does EU/PAL PS2 games work? Are they all in 50Hz instead if NTSC/60?

OR, am I better off trying to find the JP 'Virtua Cop Rebirth' version which would be 60 fps? --is it in English though?




Classicgamer wrote:
You can play Death Crimson OX (which I believe is DC3) on the PS2.


Yeah, it's "Death Crimson OX+", or in Japan "Guncom 2". Mentioned above I downloaded it but haven't tried it yet. Death Crimson 2 is the one which doesn't exist on another system from what I can tell.




Classicgamer wrote:
For anything that was exclusive to the Dreamcast you can usually play the emulated Naomi (or DC) version on a PC. I know some people here don't like emulation but when it comes to light gun games, it's worth it to use an accurate gun. They are no fun without one.


You're talking about the Ultimarc AimTrak, right? I dropped $156 on a complete one with the 12v recoil kit and all – they are a FAR cry from a real light gun. Move like 10" front or back (or even slouch down in your chair a little bit) from where you calibrated it and the aim is off. It was an absolute nightmare for me to setup in GroovyMAME on Win10 as well.

I honestly find every other light gun (including these messed-up DC ones) to be better than the AimTrak. Since I've only used it for GrovyMAME, maybe it's better when used with emulating consoles?




Classicgamer wrote:
I keep getting tempted to try the original Xbox light gun but there are so few gun games on that system. Does the Xbox have any accurate light gun controllers or is it the same issue as with the Dreamcast?


I replied above how I LOVE HoTD 3 (and unlockable 2) on my Xbox with the Mad Catz light guns - really can't fault them for anything and seem very well made even.


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