I recently picked up the Turbo Everdrive Pro and EDFX, two new products from Krikzz that work with NEC’s Turbografx 16 & PC Engine gaming consoles. The Turbo Everdrive Pro is a flash cartridge that can load HuCard games but also CD-ROM based titles without the need for a CD add-on device. You can see my full review here.
The EDFX plugs into the back of PC Engine and Turbografx consoles, providing a super clean component RGB or composite video output along with stereo audio.
The US Turbografx lacked any built in A/V output but it does provide it through some of the pins on the rear that the EDFX connects to. On the US Turbografx 16 CD audio from the Turbo Everdrive Pro will not work without an A/V connection like the EDFX attached.
The EDFX’s video output connector follows the standard Genesis 2 pinout making it compatible with high quality cables like those from HD Retrovision (affiliate link).
One of the games I tested was the largest Hucard game ever released: Street Fighter 2 Champion Edition. This Japan-only release booted up without issue on my American hardware through the Everdrive. The video output was clean and the audio was pretty good, with only a slight bit of noise in the background when reading from the card.
The Turbo Everdrive Pro supports save states for card games which allows a system snapshot to be taken so you can return to the saved point at any time. Krikzz says that not all games are compatible with this feature but I didn’t come across any that didn’t work in my testing.
But where the Turbo Everdrive Pro truly shines is in its support for CD games. I loaded up Rondo of Blood, a Japanese-only CD-ROM game, and it worked flawlessly. The game loaded up quickly, and it can even saves games to the SD card. Each CD game gets its own memory space for save games.
Another game I tried was Sapphire, another Japanese-only game that required the Arcade Card, an add-on that added additional memory to the system. The Turbo Everdrive Pro handled this without any pre-configuration. It automatically let the game know that there was an arcade card in there for that RAM expansion, and the game loaded up quickly and played perfectly.
You can see some captured footage of the Turbo Everdrive Pro and EDFX in action from my Extra’s channel here.
The Turbo Everdrive Pro and EDFX have allowed me to explore a system that I didn’t appreciate back in its day. Although the PC Engine outsold the Sega Mega Drive by more than 2 to 1 in Japan its sales were weak against the Genesis and SNES here in the USA. As a result we didn’t get many ports of some the amazing Japanese titles that appeared on the PC Engine during its run.
The Turbo Everdrive Pro can help you explore these games on original hardware even if all you have is the American Turbografx 16. While it does carry a price premium vs. emulation or a MiSTer, there is something special about playing these games on the actual hardware they were written for.