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October 9, 2014 Haze Categories: General News. 2 Comments on Arkanoid – Newest Japan Set

ShouTime dumped the newest (likely final) Japan set of Arkanoid, with program roms ’24’ and ’25’ and MCU ’26’

Previously the newest dumped Japan set used program roms ’21’ and ’22’ with MCU ’23’ so fits directly before this revision

Tournament Arkanoid use program roms ’27’ and ’28’ so sits directly after it.

Unfortunately the MCUs are read protected, so like the other Arkanoid sets I’ve had to fake the return data based on the location of various structures in the program rom, allowing the game to function. It is not known if the real MCU code is the same.

What’s most interesting about this set is that the first 5 levels differ from the older sets, it’s also strange to see that the Level Select, present in the previous build (21/22/23) has once again been removed / disabled in this newer version. It’s common for the bootlegs to have modified levels, but I did not expect to see an original Taito set with such changes.

The new set is shown on the left, the older set on the right.

Arkanoid Japan Newest Arkanoid Japan Older
Arkanoid Japan Newest Arkanoid Japan Older
Arkanoid Japan Newest Arkanoid Japan Older
Arkanoid Japan Newest Arkanoid Japan Older
Arkanoid Japan Newest Arkanoid Japan Older


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I can see why Taito decided to change the first five levels, it rebalances the game so some of the earlier levels (especially 5) aren’t as difficult as the later ones.

Here’s an interesting piece of Taito History..Had ShouTime not dug this up, I probably would have assumed all official sets went unchanged, save for Tournament Ark.

Based on the screenshots, I can vouch for the 24 / 25 Arkanoid set having been used on machines in Ireland as well as the 21 / 22 sets; I distinctly remember noticing the differences between levels when it was current. Further, some machines had level select, some didn’t – but it also seemed to apply to both sets of playfields.

That said, we had a *huge* number of bootlegs in circulation at the time, and I don’t know if the 24 / 25 set machines were official or not. The different levels are *definitely* sticking in my head, though; as for which ones did or did not have level select, I’m not totally certain on that.

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