Update: Cartridge or NES

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Alucard1191
Posts: 91
Joined: November 16th, 2016, 12:55 pm

Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby Alucard1191 » September 2nd, 2017, 12:55 pm

Hello forum world,

A while ago an NES came in with 2 games, and I couldn't get anything to work. You guys gave me some suggestions, and it's taken me awhile... but I have an update, and it unfortunately isn't a good one.

I now have 3 cartridges, Urban Champion, Dusty's Softball, and Mickey Mousecapades. Urban Champion and Dusty's 'read.' I get sound and I can kind of select things, but the graphics are all kinds of screwed up. Non-playable. At the advice of this site I ordered a new cartridge reader for the NES, took it apart, replaced it, and other than not really having to blow or reset a cartridge for it to 'stabilize' nothing has changed.

I ordered Urban Champion on ebay, (my wife loves that game) and the seller says it is tested... and since now 3 cartridges won't work on this NES with a new part, I'm thinking it has to be something else.

Should I just save some money and buy a new NES on ebay or are there other maintenance things that can be done that might fix this?

Thanks in advance, I'd really love to have a working NES again.

mbd36
Posts: 150
Joined: April 18th, 2015, 10:32 am

Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby mbd36 » September 2nd, 2017, 3:12 pm

Alucard1191 wrote:Hello forum world,

A while ago an NES came in with 2 games, and I couldn't get anything to work. You guys gave me some suggestions, and it's taken me awhile... but I have an update, and it unfortunately isn't a good one.

I now have 3 cartridges, Urban Champion, Dusty's Softball, and Mickey Mousecapades. Urban Champion and Dusty's 'read.' I get sound and I can kind of select things, but the graphics are all kinds of screwed up. Non-playable. At the advice of this site I ordered a new cartridge reader for the NES, took it apart, replaced it, and other than not really having to blow or reset a cartridge for it to 'stabilize' nothing has changed.

I ordered Urban Champion on ebay, (my wife loves that game) and the seller says it is tested... and since now 3 cartridges won't work on this NES with a new part, I'm thinking it has to be something else.

Should I just save some money and buy a new NES on ebay or are there other maintenance things that can be done that might fix this?

Thanks in advance, I'd really love to have a working NES again.


Did you clean all games thoroughly with rubbing alcohol?

Never blow into carts.

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Rev
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Joined: April 7th, 2015, 7:31 pm

Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby Rev » September 2nd, 2017, 3:39 pm

First of all, do you know of anyone or of a game shop that could test your current games for you? If someone has an NES that is fully operational you can test whether it is your games or if it is the console. Almost all NES games that you buy, the games will be filthy unless owned by a die hard collector. The games really do need to be cleaned very heavily. In fact, with a fully functional NES, I have never had a game not work after fully cleaning it (I have almost 300 NES games). Sometimes you may need to resort to sand paper or something to get the game fully cleaned but if you know of someone who has a fully functional NES, this would be a good way to troubleshoot what the problem is. Most of the time, NES games are so filthy in the wild that you really need to clean it for the game to load on the first try.

If the games work elsewhere just fine, then you know it is your console. At that point. if you haven't cleaned the contacts on the console then I would recommend doing that, but if you've already done that (or they are new) you probably need a replacement NES. The NES toploader would by my recommendation except it only has a cable line. The console simply plays games better than the original NES and is less harmed by dirty games. If you get a fully functional nes, always clean every single game before putting it in the console so they don't contaminate your console. Filthy games are going to dirty the contacts on the console.

Edit: also, on the NES I have had quite a few games where the contacts of the game get loose because a plastic piece inside the cartridge breaks. If you hear a loose sound in the game when you shake it this might be the problem as well. If the contacts aren't straight they won't fit in and nothing will play. If you open up most cartridges there is a way to screw down the cartridge to the plastic case which solves this problem, otherwise you have to use gorilla glue to glue back the plastic piece.

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scotland
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Joined: April 7th, 2015, 7:33 pm

Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby scotland » September 2nd, 2017, 3:54 pm

Revs advice is solid.

You may not be able to open a NES cart without the appropriate bit. Also, if you opt for a new NES, there are modern reproductions.You can get a Retron 1 with 720p HDMI output for $40 on Amazon, free shipping with Prime.

Alucard1191
Posts: 91
Joined: November 16th, 2016, 12:55 pm

Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby Alucard1191 » September 8th, 2017, 12:13 am

I have heard mixed things about the retcon consoles, so I'd prefer to go old school. And to answer the question on the cartridges, yes, I've cleaned them all, and the NES also now has a new slot reader in it. Yet still no change in performance from before.

When I ordered the new cartridge reader it came with the special screwdriver to take apart the nintendo cartridges, so taking them apart and cleaning them is really easy.

I might possibly have someone local with a working NES, there is a retro gamer that comes into our store, (my wife and I run a thrift store, where the system/games came from originally) so I could ask him to test them, but I'm really, REALLY getting the idea that there is something else that has died. Is there some sort of chip or something in the NES that handles mainly graphics? Maybe that is dead and if I know what I'm looking for I can actually assess it.

You guys linked me a site a few months ago that explained how to clean everything really well, and I've done that. Other than the NES "reading" and "stabilizing" immediately, (it doesn't auto reset at all.) the performance hasn't changed. Sound and limited controls on Dusty's and now Urban Champion, no graphics. Mickey Mouscapade won't read at all, no sound or anything. So I'm thinking that one might be genuinely dead.

I just have a hard time believing that 3 cartridges, one which I just ordered that the seller says works and was tested, aren't reading and it isn't the system itself.

Thanks for any and all suggestions.

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Rev
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Joined: April 7th, 2015, 7:31 pm

Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby Rev » September 9th, 2017, 12:16 pm

Hmm.. That I do not know. At this point I'd just get a new nes then. It probably isn't worth the hassle trying to Frankenstein the nes back to life. Get a toploader, they are built like tanks.

Alucard1191
Posts: 91
Joined: November 16th, 2016, 12:55 pm

Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby Alucard1191 » September 12th, 2017, 12:09 pm

Rev wrote:Hmm.. That I do not know. At this point I'd just get a new nes then. It probably isn't worth the hassle trying to Frankenstein the nes back to life. Get a toploader, they are built like tanks.



Thanks, I'm going to do that. From the looks of it, top loaders are actually cheaper than the originals, and if they are built as well as my SNES, I'll be very happy.

It's probably going to wait a few months before I can drop ~80 dollars on something like that, but I'm excited to do so. Expect some sort of update later in the year, lol. (Unless an NES comes into the store... but only the one has all year.)

Speaking of systems that come in, people seem to be throwing out 360's, (that are broken) or Wii's (that work) the most at the moment. So those systems might be cheaper than normal at thrift shops if you can find them. (I sold a Wii for 20 bucks last month.)

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Retro STrife
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Re: Update: Cartridge or NES

Postby Retro STrife » September 14th, 2017, 5:55 pm

Alucard1191 wrote:Thanks, I'm going to do that. From the looks of it, top loaders are actually cheaper than the originals, and if they are built as well as my SNES, I'll be very happy.

It's probably going to wait a few months before I can drop ~80 dollars on something like that, but I'm excited to do so. Expect some sort of update later in the year, lol. (Unless an NES comes into the store... but only the one has all year.)

Speaking of systems that come in, people seem to be throwing out 360's, (that are broken) or Wii's (that work) the most at the moment. So those systems might be cheaper than normal at thrift shops if you can find them. (I sold a Wii for 20 bucks last month.)


As I mentioned last time, Dusty's Softball is a rare game. It's worth at least $50. You could sell it and put it toward a replacement NES. Or trade it with an NES collector who has an extra console lying around.

I've noticed that 360s and Wiis are easy to find too...I remember the Genesis and Playstation 1 being the same way. Nobody wanted them and you could get them dirt cheap. They're still relatively cheap, but they've definitely gained some value back over the past several years. Probably the same will happen with these last-gen consoles, so it's a good time to buy them.


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