Atarimax Colecovision Ultimate SD Multi-Cart
Advanced SD Multi-Cart for Colecovision Game Systems
©2015 Steven J Tucker
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Chapter 4: Using the Colecovision On-Screen Menu
On-Screen Menu Basics
The Title Bar
The title bar appears at the top line of the SD directory listing. The default title is 'Atarimax Colecovision Ultimate' and can be personalized by setting a new title in the menu INI file.
The SD Card Directory Listing
The contents of the currently selected directory on your SD card are shown here.
The selection light bar always highlights the currently selected item and can be moved up or down by using either Colecovision game controller.
Directories on your SD card are prefixed in the display with the path character '/'. Files are displayed without any prefix character.
The SD Card Directory listing window is 20 lines tall. If your directory contains more than 20 items, you can view them by moving the selection light bar up, down, right or left to scroll through the directory contents.
Moving the controller UP or DOWN will scroll the directory listing UP or DOWN by one line. Moving the controller RIGHT or LEFT will move the selection light bar to the top or bottom of the current display.
You can move through the directory listing more quickly by moving the controller LEFT or RIGHT, which will cause the directory listing to scroll an entire page UP or DOWN.
Current Path & Error Messages
The SD card directory currently being viewed is displayed on the last line on the menu software.
If any errors occur using the menu software, for example if you try to load an invalid ROM image, the current path shown at the bottom will temporarily be replaced with text describing the error in detail.
To change directories, just highlight the desired directory with the light bar using the Colecovision game controller and press FIRE.
To change to the previous (parent) directory, select the entry named '\..'. If there is no parent directory entry named '\..', then you are already at the root directory of the SD card.
Loading a ROM Image
To load a ROM image, select it with the light bar and press FIRE on the Colecovision controller.
ROM Images may have extensions other than '.ROM'. Some other possibilities are '.COL', '.BIN', '.STO' and '.HYB'.
If the display of ROM image file extensions is disabled in the options menu then ROM images will not show any extension on the menu.
If any errors occur, look for a detailed explanation at the bottom of the screen.
Loading a Screenshot
The Ultimate SD menu software also supports the display of Colecovision screenshots stored in Coleco Paint PATCOL format.
To load a screen shot directly, highlight the screenshot file (it should have a '.PC' file extension) and press FIRE on the Colecovision game controller.
When viewing the screenshot, press FIRE again to return to the menu software where you left off.
Loading a Manual
The Ultimate SD menu software supports the display of ASCII text files and game manuals.
To load a manual directly, highlight the text file (it should have a '.TXT' file extension) and press FIRE on the Colecovision game controller.
Once loaded, follow the on-screen directions to navigate the text file.
Text files of up to 256KB in size can be loaded and displayed by the menu software.
The Colecovision display in the character mode used by the menu software is 32 characters wide. Formatting your manuals for display on a 30 or 32 character wide display with a text editor will result in a much more appealing and easy to read file.
Some users may be using a 'narrow' display version of the menu software which is restricted to to using only 30 characters, due to the limitation of some television screens.
Setting up Automatic Loading of Associated Materials
The Ultimate SD Menu Software supports automatic display of screenshots, game manuals and box art without leaving the directory browser.
To achieve this, your manuals, screenshots and box art should have the exact same filename as the associated ROM image, except for the file extension.
For example, if you have a ROM image named 'Zenji.ROM', the screenshot and/or box art should be named 'Zenji.PC' and the manual named 'Zenji.TXT'.
To enable automatic display of these associated materials, place them in the appropriate subdirectories within the '\COLECO' folder on your SD card.
For game manuals, place the associated '.TXT' file in the '\COLECO\Manuals' directory.
For screenshots, place the associated '.PC' file in the '\COLECO\Images' directory.
For box art, place the associated '.PC' file in the '\COLECO\Boxes' directory.
If these directories do not already exist on your SD card, be sure to create them within the existing '\COLECO' folder, not in the root directory of your SD card.
Automatic Loading of Screenshots, Manuals and Box Art
Once organized as described above, the Ultimate SD Menu software can find and display the materials associated with your ROM images automatically.
To display the screenshot for a game, just highlight the ROM image for that game and press '1' on the Colecovision game controller.
To display the manual for a game, just highlight the ROM image for that game and press '3' on the Colecovision game controller.
To display the box art for a game, just highlight the ROM image and press '7' on the Colecovision game controller.
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