Guide: Timespinner on Retro Handhelds (PortMaster)

Guide: Timespinner on Retro Handhelds (PortMaster)

The indie classic game Timespinner has recently been ported to various handheld devices, thanks to community developers and the awesome PortMaster tool. Here are the systems that can run the game as of making this guide:

Anbernic RG351P (ArkOS final, TheRA, AmberELEC, JELOS)
Anbernic RG351M (ArkOS final, TheRA, AmberELEC, JELOS)
Anbernic RG351V (ArkOS, TheRA, AmberELEC, JELOS)
Anbernic RG351MP (ArkOS, TheRA, AmberELEC, JELOS)
Anbernic RG552 (AmberELEC, JELOS)
PowKiddy RGB10 (ArkOS)
GameForce Chi (ArkOS)
RK2020 (ArkOS)
ODROID Go Advance (ArkOS)
ODROID Go Super (The RetroArena, RetroOZ)
PowKiddy RGB10 Max (The Retro Arena, RetroOZ)

Setting up this game is similar to other ports such as Shovel Knight, Undertale, and Iconoclasts. Big thanks to developer JohnnyOnFlame for getting this port up and running; please consider buying him a coffee for his hard work.

Note that you will need to have PortMaster installed and updated on your device. Here is my PortMaster guide.

Continue reading “Guide: Timespinner on Retro Handhelds (PortMaster)”

Stardew Valley on Retro Handhelds

Stardew Valley on Retro Handhelds

Last updated: 20JAN2022 (see Changelog for details)

The beloved farming simulator Stardew Valley has now been ported to RK3326 devices such as the Anbernic RG351 series, PowKiddy RGB10 series, ODROID Go Advance/Super, and the GameForce Chi. This game also works on the RG552 running 351ELEC beta. Setting up this game is similar to other ports such as Shovel Knight, Undertale, and Iconoclasts. Mad props to developer JohnnyOnFlame for getting this port running; please consider buying him a coffee for his hard work.

IMPORTANT NOTE: since making my installation video below, the game has been updated which affects that installation. From now on, it’s important to download the “Compatibility” version of the game in order for the process to work. The written instructions below will walk you through that process.

Continue reading “Stardew Valley on Retro Handhelds”

PowKiddy RGB10 Max (and Max 2) Starter Guide

PowKiddy RGB10 Max (and Max 2) Starter Guide

Last updated: 02MAR2022 (see Changelog for details)

The PowKiddy RGB10 Max is my favorite of the current “budget” (sub-$150) retro handheld devices. Most of that has to do with its lovely 5″ display, plastic shell, and internal WiFi. There are some definitely flaws with the device (underwhelming quality assurance, mono speaker, a weird rubber coating), but it ticks enough boxes that I recommend it as a good starting device for anyone looking to play retro games on a handheld device.

So in this guide I’m going to walk you through the entire process of buying the device, getting oriented with its user experience, and customizing the firmware to suit your needs. Note that the video guide was made before the RGB10 Max 2 was announced, but the process will be the same.

Continue reading “PowKiddy RGB10 Max (and Max 2) Starter Guide”

Final Review: Anbernic RG351MP

Final Review: Anbernic RG351MP

The Anbernic RG351MP is the latest in a line of RK3326-powered handheld gaming devices. In this video, we’ll take a final look at this console within four different use cases to determine whether the RG351MP is a good fit for you.

Buy an RG351MP here
TP Link AC600 5GHz WiFi dongle

Other devices worth considering:
Anbernic RG351V
PowKiddy RGB10 Max
Anbernic RG351P
Anbernic RG350M
Anbernic RG280V
PowKiddy V90

Continue reading “Final Review: Anbernic RG351MP”

Guide: Moonlight on Retro Handhelds

Guide: Moonlight on Retro Handhelds

Last updated: 28NOV2021

Moonlight is a game streaming tool designed to allow you to stream your screen (and games) from a PC to a connected device. This means you can stream games that wouldn’t normally run on your device, such as GameCube, PS2, PC games, and so on. This is an excellent option if you want to play a few games while in bed, or on the couch, or maybe at the dinner table.

For this guide, we will focus on Moonlight support for ArkOS and RetroOZ firmwares on the following handheld devices:

Anbernic RG351P (ArkOS final, 351ELEC) — requires WiFi dongle
Anbernic RG351M (ArkOS final, 351ELEC)
Anbernic RG351V (ArkOS, 351ELEC)
Anbernic RG351MP (ArkOS, 351ELEC)
PowKiddy RGB10 (ArkOS) — requires WiFi dongle
PowKiddy RGB10 Max (RetroOZ) — requires WiFi dongle for 5GHz
GameForce Chi (ArkOS)
RK2020 (ArkOS) — requires WiFi dongle
ODROID Go Advance (ArkOS) — may require WiFi dongle
ODROID Go Super (RetroOZ) — requires WiFi dongle

UPDATE! As of 28NOV2021, Moonlight streaming is now working on 351ELEC firmware via PortMaster!

Continue reading “Guide: Moonlight on Retro Handhelds”

Quick Guide: File Transfer Options on Retro Handheld Devices

Quick Guide: File Transfer Options on Retro Handheld Devices

Let’s look at the four ways you can transfer files to and from your device. This guide applies to all RK3326-based devices, like the Anbernic RG351 series, PowKiddy RGB10/20, ODROID Go Advance/Super devices, and so on.

Continue reading “Quick Guide: File Transfer Options on Retro Handheld Devices”

Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove on Retro Handheld Devices

Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove on Retro Handheld Devices

Last updated: 30NOV2021 (see Changelog for details)

Let’s figure out how to play Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove on various retro handheld devices. We will primarily focus the install guide on the RG351P and RG351M, but additional instructions for other RK3326 devices are also found below.

Anbernic RG351P (ArkOS final, TheRA, 351ELEC)
Anbernic RG351M (ArkOS final, TheRA, 351ELEC)
Anbernic RG351V (ArkOS, TheRA, 351ELEC)
Anbernic RG351MP (ArkOS, TheRA, 351ELEC)
PowKiddy RGB10 (ArkOS)
GameForce Chi (ArkOS)
RK2020 (ArkOS)
ODROID Go Advance (ArkOS)
ODROID Go Super (The RetroArena, RetroOZ)
PowKiddy RGB10 Max (The Retro Arena, RetroOZ)

I’ve been playing this game for a few days now and I really love it. It reminds me of a cross between the Duck Tales and Mega Man NES games, with some lite RPG elements. Fair warning, the games are pretty difficult, but there are cheat codes available if that’s your thing.

Big shoutout to developer JohnnyonFlame for getting this port up and running on these devices. He’s also the developer who made all of those awesome Super Mario 64 ports possible! If you have the means to do so, please consider donating a coffee to show your support for his work.

Table of Contents
Purchase and download the game
GOG-specific instructions
Steam-specific instructions
Load the game onto your device
A note on controls
Changelog

Purchase and download the game

In order to play Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove, you will need the game files from the Linux version of this game. I recommend buying the game from the Humble Store, since the games will already be in the appropriate file system. Be sure to watch for sales, since the MSRP for this game ($40) is pretty steep. However, bear in mind that by purchasing this game, you are getting four games in one, and you can also play it on your home PC or Mac, too.

If you already own the game via GOG.com or Steam, see the instructions below on how to extract the game files.

Once you have purchased the game, download the Linux version onto your computer. Extract the .tar file twice using 7Zip (or Archive Utility if you are on a Mac), and you should have a folder named and organized as such:

shovelknight
> 64 (folder)
> 32 (folder)
> data (folder)
> shovelknight (binary file)
> softwarelicense.txt

GOG-specific instructions

If you happen to already own the game via GOG.com, it’s easy to extract the Linux data files. Once you have purchased the game from GOG.com, it will show up in your library. Go into the Games section on your profile, and click the arrow at the bottom-right of your Shovel Knight game, and select “View Downloads”. Change the system to Linux, and then click on the link under “Download Game Installers”. 

The downloaded file will be in .sh format. All you have to do is change the file extension from .sh to .gz, and then open it with 7zip. Inside you will find all of the game data files you need, organized as such:

shovelknight
> 64 (folder)
> 32 (folder)
> data (folder)
> shovelknight (binary file)
> softwarelicense.txt

Steam-specific instructions

If you happen to already own the game via Steam, here are instructions on how to download the Linux version of Shovel Knight via a Windows PC. Thanks to dhimdi and yalsi86 on Reddit for figuring out the method:

  • Press Win+R and open “steam://open/console” (Steam will now show console command)
  • Enter “download_depot 250760 250764” (It will eventually show download location)
    You will end up with having: 32 (folder), 64 (folder), data (folder)
  • You don’t need the shovelknight (binary) and softwarelicense.txt in the main folder, the Steam Linux version is already set.

Note: The game will prompt you that it doesn’t find the Steam client (duh!) each time you go back to the main menu of the game.. a bit annoying!

This method can be done when trying to download the Linux version of other games via Steam. The App ID and Depot ID of the game can be found on the site steamdb.info. When you search for a game on this site you’ll immediately see the App ID. Scroll down a bit and click on Depots. Here you’ll find all the available OS versions of the game and the corresponding Depot ID. The download command in the steam console is: download_depot <appid> <depotid>

Load the game onto your device

Update: as of 30NOV 2021, Shovel Knight is working via PortMaster, which simplifies the experience significantly.

Here are the instructions from PortMaster to get the game up and running. In short, install PortMaster, then move the shovelknight game data files into the shovelknight/gamedata folder.

A note on controls

In my testing, the most important part for me was to confirm that all buttons were registering on the various devices. That being said, some of the buttons may not correspond to what you prefer on your specific device. Luckily, the Shovel Knight options menu lets you remap the entire controller to your liking, so it just takes a few moments to set up the controls on your device.

ODROID Go Super and RGB10 Max instructions (RetroOZ)

You can play this game in stunning widescreen with the ODROID Go Super running the latest (0.45b and higher) version of RetroOZ.

The .045b version will come with everything you need other than the shovelknight data file itself. So to install, just copy the shovelknight folder from your purchased Linux version of the game into the “ports” folder on your RetroOZ SD card. Just like magic, it works! This should work for the RGB10 Max as well, as long as it’s running the correct version of RetroOZ.


Changelog

30NOV2021
– changed to PortMaster instructions

13MAY2021
– added link to cheats database
– added GOG instructions

12MAY2021
– added OGS and RGB10 Max instructions

10MAY2021
– added Steam instructions
– updated zip file with licenses
– added info about ArkOS pre-load on RG351V

09MAY2021
– published guide

PowKiddy RGB10 Custom Upgrades: Shell, Battery, Screen, and more!

PowKiddy RGB10 Custom Upgrades: Shell, Battery, Screen, and more!

In today’s video I’m going to show you how I upgraded my PowKiddy RGB10 with a metal case, OCA-laminated screen, bigger battery, PS Vita analog stick, and an upgraded iPhone 8 speaker.

Buy your upgrade kit or custom-made console here.
Check out Always Be Fun’s YouTube channel for more modding adventures!

Continue reading “PowKiddy RGB10 Custom Upgrades: Shell, Battery, Screen, and more!”