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elettronica:arcade:varie:alteredbeast

Altered Beast/ (Sega, 1988)

Lately, I've had the occasion to see three different versions of SEGA System 16 Altered Beast PCBs. The differences among those PCBs tickled my curiosity so now I'm trying to find more info about them.

Altered Beast (set 4) (MC-8123B 317-0066)

This is the first board, a PCB that a friend sent to me, directly from the UK, to repair:
alteredbeast_pcb_1.jpg alteredbeast_pcb_2.jpg

This board is pretty well known and is already documented in mame sources (mame/drivers/segas16b.cpp).

Both PCB labels and ROM dump match and are relative to: Altered Beast (set 4) (MC-8123B 317-0066, World)

//             CPU: 68000 + MC-8123B 317-0066
//    Sega game ID: 833-6660-06 (supposed, missing label)
// Main Board type: 171-5357
//   Main board ID: 837-6662-06 (supposed, I've not took it)
//  ROM Board type: 171-5521
//    ROM board ID: 834-6661-06

The sound CPU code is protected with an MC-8123B marked with the ID 317-0066, the CPU code is not protected
alteredbeast_mc8123b.jpg

The EPROM Board is a 171-5521 and is configured to have program ROM size set to 1M (S2 shorted) and object ROM size to 512K/1M (S3, S6, S7 shorted)

171-5521 (SYSTEM16B TYPE)
|-------------------------------|
|16    SCR03      SCR13         |
|                               |
|15    SCR02      SCR12         |
|  CN3                     CN1  |
|14|-| SCR01      SCR11    |-|  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|13| | *          OBJ7-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|12| | SPEECH1    OBJ6-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|11| | SPEECH0    OBJ5-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|10|-| S-PROG     OBJ4-E   |-|  |
|            S2          74LS138|
|9   74F139  S1   315-5298    S6|
|                             S5|
|8     ROM1-E     OBJ3-E      S4|
|                             S3|
|7 CN4 ROM0-E     OBJ2-E   CN2  |
|  |-|                     |-|  |
|6 | | ROM1-O     OBJ1-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|5 | | ROM0-O     OBJ0-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|4 | | OBJ7-O     OBJ3-O   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|3 | | OBJ6-O     OBJ2-O   | |  |
|  |-|                     |-|  |
|2     OBJ5-O     OBJ1-O        |
|                            S7 |
|1     OBJ4-O     OBJ0-O        |
|        A          B         C |
|-------------------------------|
Notes:
            * - Empty position, no socket
        S1/S2 - Jumpers to configure 68k program ROM size
                S2 shorted = 1M

     S3/4/5/6 - Jumpers to configure object ROM size
                S3 + S6 + S7 shorted = 512K or 1M

     315-5298 - Signetics PLS153F Field Programmable Logic Array stamped '315-5298' (DIP20)


-----------------|--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
Altered Beast    |A1       A2       A3       A4       A5       A6       A7       A8       A10      A11      A12               A14      A15      A16     |
CPU   - 68000    |--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
8751  -          |OPR11717 OPR11718 OPR11719 -        EPR11739 -        EPR11740 -        EPR11686 OPR11672 OPR11673          OPR11722 OPR11723 OPR11724|
SOUND - MC-8123B |--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
        317-0066 |                                                                                                                                      |
                 |B1       B2       B3       B4       B5       B6       B7       B8       B10      B11      B12      B13      B14      B15      B16     |
                 |--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
                 |OPR11725 OPR11726 OPR11727 OPR11728 OPR11729 OPR11730 OPR11731 OPR11732 OPR11733 OPR11734 OPR11735 -        OPR11736 OPR11737 OPR11738|
-----------------|--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
ROM_REGION( 0x40000, "maincpu", 0 ) // 68000 code
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11740.a7", 0x000000, 0x20000, CRC(ce227542) SHA1(54adcc1246943360bb68498e971809a0d4f9fe0c) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11739.a5", 0x000001, 0x20000, CRC(e466eb65) SHA1(c9bb57818eb81a43abdf2ad2a79a0bd45c25d208) )
ROM_REGION( 0xc0000, "gfx1", 0 ) // tiles
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11722.a14", 0x00000, 0x10000,  CRC(adaa8db5) SHA1(3262c98d13d08c333d16052cac841f44d2f99743) ) // plane 1
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11736.b14", 0x20000, 0x10000,  CRC(e9ad5e89) SHA1(769628eee6e194a84aa8a3729f4e7d07dd3ba25c) )
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11723.a15", 0x40000, 0x10000,  CRC(131a3f9a) SHA1(8182c3b8ce7a2f02b226cfa2081187593c9d0d0b) ) // plane 2
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11737.b15", 0x60000, 0x10000,  CRC(2e420023) SHA1(3aa2c3b6fccafb4d53b6ab99b95181d3eed7c77f) )
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11724.a16", 0x80000, 0x10000,  CRC(6f2ed50a) SHA1(55d0c4299e7240b0ef5316b48db7a158145c76ab) ) // plane 3
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11738.b16", 0xa0000, 0x10000,  CRC(de3d6d02) SHA1(428811f21c68761022521a17fc4716f6e7214b20) )
ROM_REGION16_BE( 0x200000, "sprites", 0 ) // sprites
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11725.b1",  0x000001, 0x010000, CRC(f8b3684e) SHA1(3de2685cae5fb3c954b8440fafce313072747469) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11729.b5",  0x000000, 0x010000, CRC(ae3c2793) SHA1(c4f46861ea63ffa3c038a1ef931479b94e5382df) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11726.b2",  0x040001, 0x010000, CRC(3cce5419) SHA1(fccdbd6d05f5927272e7d6e5f997418d4fa2baf5) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11730.b6",  0x040000, 0x010000, CRC(3af62b55) SHA1(9f079af88aaf2447948c9ac01c6cbd1e79539704) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11727.b3",  0x080001, 0x010000, CRC(b0390078) SHA1(9035d9f45c67bdc802710018722943f5b63e8b5d) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11731.b7",  0x080000, 0x010000, CRC(2a87744a) SHA1(421b3926de046ddeddad05f65fc6b5078af28dbd) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11728.b4",  0x0c0001, 0x010000, CRC(f3a43fd8) SHA1(d42833ecd0c1920f1a6904d32c096f12d8622141) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11732.b8",  0x0c0000, 0x010000, CRC(2fb3e355) SHA1(960e0a66b23f79833b011ea35a5a412dffb47083) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11717.a1",  0x100001, 0x010000, CRC(676be0cb) SHA1(1e7d4c5f231992f111cc7885e97bc5a7267a5e89) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11733.b10", 0x100000, 0x010000, CRC(802cac94) SHA1(24e5aa74ce8b6c53c78cc33a41a473df3fbce639) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11718.a2",  0x140001, 0x010000, CRC(882864c2) SHA1(bd44bbdc13e5fd1b5c31c343da00a75b9dd90478) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11734.b11", 0x140000, 0x010000, CRC(76c704d2) SHA1(35b393071e29b8d122d3f904b923689a7dddc808) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11719.a3",  0x180001, 0x010000, CRC(339987f7) SHA1(b5650f8bdbd44510e84686b20daf70bc4a564f28) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11735.b12", 0x180000, 0x010000, CRC(4fe406aa) SHA1(7f068b81f35be4cc4785824ed524d28f201ff0a5) )
ROM_REGION( 0x50000, "soundcpu", 0 ) // sound CPU
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11686.a10", 0x00000, 0x08000, CRC(828a45b3) SHA1(df921701b411afac1b6716b6798a1bffc2180133) ) // encrypted
ROM_LOAD( "opr-11672.a11", 0x10000, 0x20000, CRC(bbd7f460) SHA1(bbc5c2219cb3a827d84062b19affd9780da2a3cf) )
ROM_LOAD( "opr-11673.a12", 0x30000, 0x20000, CRC(400c4a36) SHA1(de4bdfa91734410e0a7f6a16bf8336db172f458a) )
ROM_REGION( 0x2000, "soundcpu:key", 0 ) // MC8123 key
ROM_LOAD( "317-0066.key",  0x0000, 0x2000, CRC(ed85a054) SHA1(dcc84ec077a8a489f45abfd2bf4a9ba377da28a5) )

Altered Beast (set 6) (8751 317-0076)

This other board is a PCB I've bought on eBay:
alteredbeast_pcb_3.jpg

alteredbeast_game_id.jpg alteredbeast_mb_id.jpg alteredbeast_label.jpg alteredbeast_rb_id.jpg

The content of the EPROMs is the same of Altered Beast (set 6) (8751 317-0076)

//             CPU: 68000 + i8751 (handwritten label with 0076)
// Main Board type: 171-5357
//    Sega game ID: 833-6660-08
//      Main board: 837-6662-06
//  Rom Board type: 171-5521
//       ROM board: 834-6661-08

The sound CPU code is not protected, the CPU code is obfuscated and need to be decoded by the Intel 8751 in B2
alteredbeast_i8751.jpg

The EPROM Board is a 171-5521 and is configured to have program ROM size set to 1M (S2 shorted) and object ROM size to 512K/1M (S3, S6, S7 shorted)

171-5521 (SYSTEM16B TYPE)
|-------------------------------|
|16    SCR03      SCR13         |
|                               |
|15    SCR02      SCR12         |
|  CN3                     CN1  |
|14|-| SCR01      SCR11    |-|  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|13| | *          OBJ7-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|12| | SPEECH1    OBJ6-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|11| | SPEECH0    OBJ5-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|10|-| S-PROG     OBJ4-E   |-|  |
|            S2          74LS138|
|9   74F139  S1   315-5298    S6|
|                             S5|
|8     ROM1-E     OBJ3-E      S4|
|                             S3|
|7 CN4 ROM0-E     OBJ2-E   CN2  |
|  |-|                     |-|  |
|6 | | ROM1-O     OBJ1-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|5 | | ROM0-O     OBJ0-E   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|4 | | OBJ7-O     OBJ3-O   | |  |
|  | |                     | |  |
|3 | | OBJ6-O     OBJ2-O   | |  |
|  |-|                     |-|  |
|2     OBJ5-O     OBJ1-O        |
|                            S7 |
|1     OBJ4-O     OBJ0-O        |
|        A          B         C |
|-------------------------------|
Notes:
            * - Empty position, no socket
        S1/S2 - Jumpers to configure 68k program ROM size
                S2 shorted = 1M

     S3/4/5/6 - Jumpers to configure object ROM size
                S3 + S6 + S7 shorted = 512K or 1M

     315-5298 - Signetics PLS153F Field Programmable Logic Array stamped '315-5298' (DIP20)

-----------------|--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
Altered Beast    |A1       A2       A3       A4       A5       A6       A7       A8       A10      A11      A12               A14      A15      A16     |
CPU  - 68000     |--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
8751 - 317-0076  |EPR11717 EPR11718 EPR11719 -        EPR11882 -        EPR11883 -        EPR11671 OPR11672 OPR11673          EPR11722 EPR11723 EPR11724|
                 |--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
                 |                                                                                                                                      |
                 |B1       B2       B3       B4       B5       B6       B7       B8       B10      B11      B12      B13      B14      B15      B16     |
                 |--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
                 |EPR11725 EPR11726 EPR11727 EPR11728 EPR11729 EPR11730 EPR11731 EPR11732 EPR11733 EPR11734 EPR11735 -        EPR11736 EPR11737 EPR11738|
-----------------|--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
ROM_REGION( 0x40000, "maincpu", 0 ) // 68000 code
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11883.a7", 0x000000, 0x20000, CRC(c5b3e8f7) SHA1(06c59d38093330b74f685cb02f8c7311e4a7b38c) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11882.a5", 0x000001, 0x20000, CRC(9c01170b) SHA1(7651f791e5488ce1143eeb4ad01eb924d1460170) )
ROM_REGION( 0xc0000, "gfx1", 0 ) // tiles
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11722.a14", 0x00000, 0x10000,  CRC(adaa8db5) SHA1(3262c98d13d08c333d16052cac841f44d2f99743) ) // plane 1
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11736.b14", 0x20000, 0x10000,  CRC(e9ad5e89) SHA1(769628eee6e194a84aa8a3729f4e7d07dd3ba25c) )
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11723.a15", 0x40000, 0x10000,  CRC(131a3f9a) SHA1(8182c3b8ce7a2f02b226cfa2081187593c9d0d0b) ) // plane 2
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11737.b15", 0x60000, 0x10000,  CRC(2e420023) SHA1(3aa2c3b6fccafb4d53b6ab99b95181d3eed7c77f) )
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11724.a16", 0x80000, 0x10000,  CRC(6f2ed50a) SHA1(55d0c4299e7240b0ef5316b48db7a158145c76ab) ) // plane 3
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11738.b16", 0xa0000, 0x10000,  CRC(de3d6d02) SHA1(428811f21c68761022521a17fc4716f6e7214b20) )
ROM_REGION16_BE( 0x200000, "sprites", 0 ) // sprites
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11725.b1",  0x000001, 0x010000, CRC(f8b3684e) SHA1(3de2685cae5fb3c954b8440fafce313072747469) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11729.b5",  0x000000, 0x010000, CRC(ae3c2793) SHA1(c4f46861ea63ffa3c038a1ef931479b94e5382df) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11726.b2",  0x040001, 0x010000, CRC(3cce5419) SHA1(fccdbd6d05f5927272e7d6e5f997418d4fa2baf5) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11730.b6",  0x040000, 0x010000, CRC(3af62b55) SHA1(9f079af88aaf2447948c9ac01c6cbd1e79539704) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11727.b3",  0x080001, 0x010000, CRC(b0390078) SHA1(9035d9f45c67bdc802710018722943f5b63e8b5d) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11731.b7",  0x080000, 0x010000, CRC(2a87744a) SHA1(421b3926de046ddeddad05f65fc6b5078af28dbd) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11728.b4",  0x0c0001, 0x010000, CRC(f3a43fd8) SHA1(d42833ecd0c1920f1a6904d32c096f12d8622141) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11732.b8",  0x0c0000, 0x010000, CRC(2fb3e355) SHA1(960e0a66b23f79833b011ea35a5a412dffb47083) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11717.a1",  0x100001, 0x010000, CRC(676be0cb) SHA1(1e7d4c5f231992f111cc7885e97bc5a7267a5e89) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11733.b10", 0x100000, 0x010000, CRC(802cac94) SHA1(24e5aa74ce8b6c53c78cc33a41a473df3fbce639) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11718.a2",  0x140001, 0x010000, CRC(882864c2) SHA1(bd44bbdc13e5fd1b5c31c343da00a75b9dd90478) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11734.b11", 0x140000, 0x010000, CRC(76c704d2) SHA1(35b393071e29b8d122d3f904b923689a7dddc808) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11719.a3",  0x180001, 0x010000, CRC(339987f7) SHA1(b5650f8bdbd44510e84686b20daf70bc4a564f28) )
ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "epr-11735.b12", 0x180000, 0x010000, CRC(4fe406aa) SHA1(7f068b81f35be4cc4785824ed524d28f201ff0a5) )
ROM_REGION( 0x50000, "soundcpu", 0 ) // sound CPU
ROM_LOAD( "epr-11671.a10", 0x00000, 0x08000, CRC(2b71343b) SHA1(8a657f787de2b9d5161ed2c109642a148348af09) )
ROM_LOAD( "opr-11672.a11", 0x10000, 0x20000, CRC(bbd7f460) SHA1(bbc5c2219cb3a827d84062b19affd9780da2a3cf) )
ROM_LOAD( "opr-11673.a12", 0x30000, 0x20000, CRC(400c4a36) SHA1(de4bdfa91734410e0a7f6a16bf8336db172f458a) )
ROM_REGION( 0x1000, "mcu", 0 )  // Intel i8751 protection MCU
ROM_LOAD( "317-0076.c2", 0x00000, 0x1000, NO_DUMP )

Unknown (conversion/bootleg?)

The third and more interesting board came on the repair bench delivered by another friend of mine (from Italy). At the beginning, I can't understand if this is a mixed original/bootleg converted board or if it's some kind of prototype board. Anyway, it has some really interesting (IMHO) differenced between the other Altered beast boards I've seen.
alteredbeast_pcb_4.jpg

First of all the EPROMS are not labeled with standard SEGA labels, in fact, all labels only show the EPROM number from 1 to 27: alteredbeast_labels_1.jpg alteredbeast_labels_2.jpg

The fact that these labels have the same shape and font of those of Datstu bootleg let me think, as a first impression, that this is a conversion from some other system16B game and that the ROM Board is a bootleg.
alteredbeast_datsubootleg_1.jpg alteredbeast_datsubootleg_2.jpg

The ROMset dump analysis with mame0188b gave me these results:

The sprite ROMs are identical with those from the others Altered Beast ROMsets (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7 and Datsu, set 3, set 5 and Mutant Warrior bootlegs)

Sprites:
01_b1.BIN           = epr-11725.b1          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 18.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 20.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

02_b2.BIN           = epr-11726.b2          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 17.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 19.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

03_b3.BIN           = epr-11727.b3          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 16.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 18.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

04_b4.BIN           = epr-11728.b4          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 15.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 17.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

05_b5.BIN           = epr-11729.b5          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 22.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 10.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

06_b6.BIN           = epr-11730.b6          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 21.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 9.bin                 Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

07_b7.BIN           = epr-11731.b7          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 20.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 8.bin                 Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

08_b8.BIN           = epr-11732.b8          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 19.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 7.bin                 Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

09_b10.BIN          = epr-11733.b10         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 25.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg), Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)

10_b11.BIN          = epr-11734.b11         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 26.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg), Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)

11_b12.BIN          = epr-11735.b12         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 14.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 24.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

12_a1.BIN           = epr-11717.a1          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 23.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 22.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

13_a2.BIN           = epr-11718.a2          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 24.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 23.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                    

14_a3.BIN           = epr-11719.a3          Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)
                    = 13.bin                Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
                    = 21.bin                Mutant Warrior (Altered Beast - Datsu bootleg)                                        

gfx1 ROMs are identical with those from Altered Beast set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7 and set 3, set 5 bootlegs (but are different by those dumped from the Datsu bootleg)

Gfx1:
15_a14.BIN          = epr-11722.a14         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

16_a15.BIN          = epr-11723.a15         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

21_a16.BIN          = epr-11724.a16         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

22_b14.BIN          = epr-11736.b14         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

23_b15.BIN          = epr-11737.b15         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

24_b16.BIN          = epr-11738.b16         Altered Beast (set3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

The sound CPU code is identical to the code used in Altered Beast/Juuouki original boards (basically the game versions without sound code protection)

Sound CPU code:
25_a10.BIN          = epr-11671.a10         Altered Beast/Juuouki (set 1, set 3, set 5, set 6, set 7, set 8, bootleg of FD1094 317-0068 set, bootleg of FD1094 317-0069 set)

To have a complete ROMset we have yet to provide sound data and the 68k CPU code:

Sound data has no match from any known mame ROMset.

26_a11.bin          NO MATCH
27_a12.BIN          NO MATCH 

Some bootleg has a different hardware and so the code was accordingly updated, but in this case, the main board is an original System16b board so I expected the sound data EPROMs to be the same as the others (Sound data are the same for all non-bootleg versions of Altered Beast). Both EPROMs have overall three different bytes in the very first addresses of the EPROMs. I don't know if this is simply a glitch or if they were deliberately changed by the PCB makers.

26_a11.bin vs opr-11672.a11
26_a11.bin vs opr-11672.a11

27_a12.bin vs opr-11673.a12
27_a12.bin vs opr-11673.a12

CPU code:

17_a5.BIN           NO MATCH
18_a6.BIN           = 5.bin                 Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)
19_a7.BIN           NO MATCH
20_a8.BIN           = 3.bin                 Altered Beast (Datsu bootleg)

Looking into the mame driver for the Datsu bootleg (mame/drivers/system16.cpp) I can see that the upper part of the code (Addresses from 0x020000-0x040000) is the same of the Datsu bootleg while lower half of the memory space is different (Note that the identical part is the same shared between Datsu bootleg and the original Sega code).

ROM_START( altbeastbl )
	ROM_REGION( 0xc0000, "maincpu", 0 ) // 68000 code
	ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "4.bin", 0x000000, 0x10000, CRC(790b4b3a) SHA1(04ba18dc0117c472082f11561fb577ef6c441dfe) )
	ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "6.bin", 0x000001, 0x10000, CRC(0f65f25d) SHA1(2de6a4d7fe0e24d7b9605b67d0246884ff29191e) )
	ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "3.bin", 0x020000, 0x10000, CRC(65cdd72b) SHA1(1b120e0d509c05fd1aab9b609d4ff994a926ce92) )
	ROM_LOAD16_BYTE( "5.bin", 0x020001, 0x10000, CRC(3393fbc4) SHA1(38be2dc0dd7f8f0ee3bc9f290dcc87b94a52957f) )
romcmp.exe -d altbeastbl.zip unknown.zip
4 and 4 files
3.bin                   20_a8.BIN               IDENTICAL
5.bin                   18_a6.BIN               IDENTICAL
4.bin        [even 2/2] 19_a7.BIN    [odd 2/2]  41.601563%
6.bin        [even 2/2] 17_a5.BIN    [odd 2/2]  34.320068%
4.bin        [odd 2/2]  19_a7.BIN    [even 2/2] 25.708008%
4.bin        [even 1/2] 19_a7.BIN    [even 1/2] 21.087646%
4.bin        [odd 1/2]  19_a7.BIN    [odd 1/2]  19.726563%
6.bin        [odd 2/2]  17_a5.BIN    [even 2/2] 14.617920%
6.bin        [even 1/2] 17_a5.BIN    [even 1/2] 14.447021%
6.bin        [odd 1/2]  17_a5.BIN    [odd 1/2]  12.835693%


romcmp.exe -d altbeast.zip unknown.zip
2 and 4 files
epr-11906.a5 [2/2]      18_a6.BIN               IDENTICAL
epr-11907.a7 [2/2]      20_a8.BIN               IDENTICAL
epr-11907.a7 [1/2]      19_a7.BIN               30.079651%
epr-11906.a5 [1/2]      17_a5.BIN               19.575500%

Now two options showed in my mind:

  1. That board is an old (labels and EPROMs are clearly old) bootleg conversion based on an original board, that used a modified version of Datsu bootleg CPU code (maybe because SEGA hadn't yet released the unprotected versions or they're rare and hard to find)
  2. That's board is some kind of prototype that was leaked and used as a source to make the Datsu bootleg

But let's continue, because I've not yet considered the most interesting thing (IMHO) of that board: The little PCB board plugged into the CN5 slot:
alteredbeast_cn5_1.jpg

Actually, I know that system16b boards could be manufactured with three different protection schemes:

  1. They can protect the 68K main CPU code: FD1094 with encrypted code EPROMs
  2. They can protect the 68K main CPU code: i8751 MCU with obfuscated code EPROMs
  3. They can protect the Z80 sound CPU code: MC-8123B with encrypted/obfuscated sound EPROM

For sure that little strange board, that fits in CN5 with the IC markings sanded off, is part of a protection scheme. In fact, if I remove it the board refuses to start.

It didn't have any SEGA markings but:
alteredbeast_cn5_2.jpg alteredbeast_cn5_3.jpg

Component side:

  • LC

Solder side:

  • LS
  • 23 03 88 B

The markings LC and LS reminds me the initials letters for “Lato Componenti” and “Lato Saldature”, the Italian translations of “Component Side” and “Solder Side” respectively and this fact drives me to embrace the bootleg thesis. The third label 23 09 88 B is probably a date: September 23th, 1988. Accordingly, to the mame description, Altered Beast was released in August 1988, so it's really unlikely that this board is a prototype (What's the sense to make a prototype after the game is yet released?). Lastly, the label layout is way too similar to that present in the Datsu bootleg PCB:
alteredbeast_datsubootleg_3.jpg
so I presume that definitively this is a conversion made by some bootleggers using an original System16B game.

Here there's the schematic of the CN5 adapter for reference. U1 and U2 are unknown and are sanded, but I suppose that they're some kind of CPLD:

  |   A   |   B   |
--|-------|-------|  
 1|  VCC  |  VCC  |
 2|  GND  |  GND  |
 3|   NC  |   NC  |
 4|  AD1  |  AD2  |
 5|  AD3  |  AD4  |
 6|  AD5  |  DB0  |
 7|  DB1  |  DB2  |
 8|  DB3  |  DB4  |
 9|  DB5  |  DB6  |
10|  DB7  |  \RD  |
11| \LWR  | \UWR  |
12|\RESET | \EXCS |
13|   NC  |   NC  |
14|  GND  |  GND  |
15|  VCC  |  VCC  |
--|-------|-------|

alteredbeast_cn5_schematic.jpg

To make matters worse, S1-S7 are missing/not marked and there're some graphical differences about that ROM board PCB and a standard 171-5521 board (despite the fact that this board is marked as 171-5521):
alteredbeast_bootrb_4.jpg

The same date of CN5 PCB (23 09 88 A):
alteredbeast_bootrb_1.jpg

SEGA has a little different font:
alteredbeast_bootrb_2.jpg alteredbeast_originalrb_1.jpg

Different coordinates font and wrong PCB cutting:
alteredbeast_bootrb_3.jpg alteredbeast_originalrb_2.jpg

Dumped ROMset

elettronica/arcade/varie/alteredbeast.txt · Last modified: 2017/08/06 01:14 by janniz