News from RockinB – one of the last heros of the Sega Saturn homebrew scene.


It is time again for another episode of the annual SEGA Saturn Coding Contest. A few small changes compared to previous contests mean significant improvements for all contestants:

Your effort is directly rewarded with a prize. No more “I don’t have a chance to compete with contestant x”, because your prize does not depend on your rank. Instead the amount depends solely on your effort.

The goal to port games over to saturn lowers the amount of annoying debugging work, so you get more result out with less work and you can concentrate on the funny things of homebrew coding.

As Porting Party suggests, the objective is to take an existing game of your choice and port it over to SEGA Saturn! This implies that the source code of that game is available and written in C or C++. It’s totally up to you which game you choose! Choose your game carefully, try playing it yourself before starting to port it. You’ll be best off picking up a game that’s finished, very enjoyable to play and that doesn’t exceed the hardware capabilities of the SEGA Saturn console.

The contest is running during winter 2008/2009.

Meteorologically, this is the time from december 21st 2008 to march 20th 2009. So march 20th 2009 is the deadline for submitting your entries. To submit your entry: upload the Zip-compressed ISO CD image to a file hosting service like and submit the link via email to

All entries are rewarded, no matter which rank. The better your entry is, the more money you win. The more entries you submit, the more money you win.

Money: Every entry wins as much money, as it got points from the judges. So having achieved the maximum results in: 90 point = 90 euro. Even more if you collected extra points by using special saturn hardware features. Multiple entries means multiple times money! Money is transfered via paypal, contestants in the EU can alternatively use bank transfer.

USB Data Link v2: This device connects your Saturn with your PC and transfers game saves, bios and uploads homebrew games for testing. Version 2 is brand new and exclusive to contestants, it transfers data much faster than version 1, you can’t get it anywhere else. All contestants who haven’t got a one last year, will get one for free. Those who won such a device last year, can have it upgraded to v2 for free!

The entries are judged in the three categories: graphics, sound and gameplay. The judging is done by 5 to 6 judges in parallel. Every judge rates each entry in each category by giving a rating between 1 and 5 points. This means each entry can get up to 75/90 points regularly.

Additionally, extra points can be achieved by using special hardware features of the Saturn console.

So happy coding everyone. Porting is perfectly suited to submit multiple entries, because each single entry is being rewarded!

The Rockin’-B

Thanks to for the news.