Thursday, March 24, 2011

Power Player 3D Station

After some sort of shipping problem and waiting an extra week or two, I finally received my Power Player 3D Station. The box is pretty bland. It's not nearly as hilarious as the one for Power Games, but at least it has some screenshots of games that in no way could ever run on a machine using bootleg Famicom hardware. If only there were some bootleg version of Dead or Alive made for this machine, I'd play that. Though it is the 3D Station, the system obviously does no 3D. The box also advertises stereo, which I would assume means stereo sound, but there is only one audio port for the composite cords, so I don't think it even has that. I guess it could do stereo sound through the RF output, but I couldn't even get that to work at all.

The hardware seems okay for a cheap Chinese Famiclone. The console and the controllers feel like they are mode from decent plastic and nothing appears to be falling apart or coming loose at the seems like the with parts of the penguinstation. The difference in plastic quality is most apparent when comparing the light-guns of each console. They seem to be from the same mold, but the one from the 3D Station just feels like it is higher quality. It has a few parts of translucent plastic with LEDs behind them, which I guess was an attempt to make the system look modern, but they all look weird because you can just see the LED sitting in there when they are off.

The controllers are a mixed bag. They general shape and feel are pretty good in the hand. My biggest problems are the button placement (the regular A and B buttons are not in the same place they would be on an SNES controller and almost anywhere else) and the crappy d-pad.  I never thought I'd find something that makes the original Xbox d-pad seem good, but here we are. Getting the four major directions out of it is simple, but getting the diagonals seems nearly impossible. How am I supposed to reach that hidden vine and get to my warp pipes if I can't crouch/jump?  There is also two shoulder buttons that function as another way to hit A or B, so that's weird.  Speaking of weird, the controllers have a built-in rumble function.  It's quite odd to have rumble in NES games, and on top of that, the rumble is way too powerful for the tiny controllers.

Aw, isn't the wittle contwolla so cuuute?
The sticker on the box informs you that this machine has 86 in 1, which means that there are 86 games built into the system. I've barely scratched the surface on the games, but from what I can tell they are all hacks of classic NES titles. The severity of the edits to the games vary. Super Mario Bros. had its music, sprites, and backgrounds butchered. Mario is now a frog when he's small, and when he gets a potion he turns into a Mr. Coolguy with shades. I really want to get a video capture card so that I can get screenshots and video of these games so I can do articles about them individually. Or if anybody knows where I can get a collection of roms of the sort of games you find on these things a link would be greatly appreciated.

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