SaturnDave (Sega Saturn, SHIRO!)

NEW SAROO Firmware V0.5 Brings BIG Changes

On May 15, 2024, TPUnix released new firmware update V0.5 for the SAROO Sega Saturn Flashcart, bringing some much needed features and improvements.

Firm V0.5 Changes

  • Menu screen resolution changed to 320×240, to allow 12 menu items to be displayed.
  • A Spanish language option has been added to the menu.
  • Support for animated background images (<380k) has been added.
  • Support for PCM background music has been added.
  • Game ‘category’ classification has been added, allowing for sorting up to 12 folders.
  • Support for alphabetical sorting has been added.
  • In-Game Soft Reset back to SAROO menu has been added.
  • Game compatibility has been improved *(approx. 95% commercial game compatibility reported).
  • Supports booting from CD-ROM or alternate ODE.
  • SAROO may be used as a Backup Memory Cart when booting from CD or alternate ODE.
  • Heart of Darkness proto-build is running on SAROO with extended RAM support.

Finally, the stock firmware has alphabetical auto-sort, which comes as a huge relief, as the lack of this feature was the primary reason that many folks have gone with third-party modified firmwares that support for this feature. Unfortunately, those third-party firmwares were never quite as snappy performance-wise, so it’s very nice to see it supported in this new ‘vanilla’ release.

Features like in-game reset are an absolute MUST for any flash or ODE device, so it’s nice to see they’ve found a work around, whereby you press START + A B C in game to go back to the Saturn CD Player, and from there you press START to get back to the SAROO menu.

One feature that many folks have been excited about going all the way back to the WASCA cart and early previews of the SAROO, was its ability to provide the extended RAM support needed in order to run the un-optimized prototype build of Heart of Darkness that was shown at the 1996 Tokyo Toy Show.

Folks who wish to make their own SAROO menu themes can do so by following the instructions below from TZMWX:

Here are some SAROO menu themes that SHIRO! put together for folks to use and enjoy:

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