How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Talk about Diddy Kong Racing for the Nintendo 64 and Nintendo DS.

How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 4th, 2023, 10:11 am

I don’t have a rumble pack with the n64 console I play on, and I constantly keep losing all of my work. I haven’t been able to find a clear way to save without a rumble pack. It seems that with it, it saves automatically. Any ideas or help here? Thanks! :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Mattrizzle » January 4th, 2023, 10:09 pm

I've never heard of needing a Rumble Pak to save in Diddy Kong Racing. I have never owned one for my Nintendo 64, but could always save just fine.

DKR does require a Controller Pak (a.k.a. a Memory Pak or Memory Card) to save Time Trial ghost data, but progress is saved in the cartridge itself.

Unfortunately, it sounds to me like the battery in your DKR cart has run dry. If it has, you won't be able to save until you open up the cart and replace it (something I haven't done yet). It's unfortunately something that will eventually happen to all cartridge-based games with battery-backed memory, and I'm regretting it for my own collection. But it wasn't in Nintendo's interest to design these things to last for 25+ years. Even more modern consoles with hard drive-based storage and disc-based consoles with moving parts will fall victim to hardware failure (and some already have)... :dixiecry: :kiddysad:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 5th, 2023, 7:20 am

This was a new game I just got for Christmas. At first it worked and then I erased the game and started a new adventure. It works fine on the emulator, but it’s fun playing with other people on the console. I have the memory extension, is that the memory pak? I can’t save a ghost, but it used to save t.t data. Not anymore. Is this just a dud that just failed? :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Simion32 » January 5th, 2023, 7:30 am

As Mattrizzle says you may be looking at a cart with a dead backup battery.

You'll need the special game bit to open the cart along with the proper battery, though I don't remember which battery the cart takes (was it CR2016?).
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 5th, 2023, 5:01 pm

Thanks! I finally understand! Thanks for the help here! :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Mattrizzle » January 6th, 2023, 1:16 am

Simion32 wrote:I don't remember which battery the cart takes (was it CR2016?).


Many sources say CR2032.

WesternTanager, It may benefit you to get a battery with pre-soldered tabs. Either way, there will still be some soldering to be done, but that's one less step you'll have to do. Note: I'm not speaking from experience, as I haven't soldered a single thing in my life... :?

The only cart-based game with battery-backed memory I've played lately was DK64, a few months ago. At the risk of jinxing myself, that battery still worked after around 23 years, and I managed to complete the game over the course of a couple of weeks.

The oldest cart with battery backup I have is Kirby's Adventure for NES, which first released in 1993 (I have games that first released before this with battery backup, but I'm not sure how long those sat on store shelves/in inventory before my family purchased them in 1994. They don't have Player's Choice Million Seller labels).

My Memory Paks (which were third-party versions) all stopped reliably retaining data after a year or so of owning them, and the first one was even purchased brand new!
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 6th, 2023, 10:49 am

Thanks for all the help, both of you. I’m probably going to have it returned and to get a different one. :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 12th, 2023, 8:56 am

Updates! Since DKR has been used, it cannot be returned. Now the backup plan is ready to be initiated! I’m going to replace the backup battery! Thanks for the help here! :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Sledgehammer44 » January 12th, 2023, 12:43 pm

Good luck, but take caution with the soldering iron. They can give you some nasty burns if you're not careful!
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 12th, 2023, 2:05 pm

Thank you, Sledge! My neighbor is a welder and he offered to help me! :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 23rd, 2023, 10:43 am

So, I forgot to post about this. My brother loves playing DKR with me and despite the issues, we decided to go for it. I decided to go to save options and deleted the information in the game pak. Now it seems to work. We beat all the races in the Dino Domain and we pressed quit game and then ok and we saw that it saved! this was really odd. We haven’t powered it on since, but would it be gone now? :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 24th, 2023, 4:01 pm

Very odd, I experimented with it for hours and it seemed to wipe all of the saves past 18 balloons or something. I assume that is what triggers it. But even after all of that, I'm not exactly sure. :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Mattrizzle » January 25th, 2023, 2:16 am

I don't mean to crush your hopes, but sometimes a failing battery can still work briefly. It just means it hasn't gone completely kaput. In this case, if you save, power off, then return to it a few minutes later, there's a chance (but no guarantee) your progress will still be there. I witnessed this phenomenon with my previously mentioned Memory Paks, as well as Pokémon Silver (which is infamous for having a battery life of only 5 years or so due to the real-time clock, which has to be retained when the game isn't played).

The save data will still be retained as long as the console is powered on, as the SRAM chip is receiving power from the console. The battery is only there as a power source to retain the data when the console is off.
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby rainbowsprinklez » January 25th, 2023, 12:10 pm

Mattrizzle wrote:The save data will still be retained as long as the console is powered on, as the SRAM chip is receiving power from the console. The battery is only there as a power source to retain the data when the console is off.


So EZ! Never urn off your console again! I'm sure there are no adverse side effects in that scenario!
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Mattrizzle » January 25th, 2023, 12:44 pm

rainbowsprinklez wrote:So EZ! Never urn off your console again! I'm sure there are no adverse side effects in that scenario!

This. You won't lose your DKR save data, but you'll never be able to play a different N64 game ever again! :twisted:

(Honestly though, this can't be good for the health of a game console.)

During the days of the NES before games had battery-backed saves, it was a more common occurrence for some people to leave their consoles running until they completed a game. I wonder if anyone ever left one on for an entire year...

Modern consoles have a sleep mode, but that doesn't really count.

Edit: Wait, kiosk demos exist, and those run during all hours that a retail store is open. Then again, games in these kiosks would often crash in Toys 'R' Us. Usually, the disc-based consoles were the ones that always broke down, which makes sense because of their moving parts.
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 25th, 2023, 3:27 pm

I'll keep that in mind. I'll have to do that until I get Banjo-Kazooie! Then I lose all of my DKR work forever! :dixiehappy: :thumbs:

Thanks for the assistance, Mattrizzle. It's been a big help! Also, It would be interesting to find adverse side-effects in such a case! Would it save if I beat Adventure 1 in a few sittings? :parry:
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby Mattrizzle » January 26th, 2023, 3:08 am

Rainbowsprinklez and I were joking in the two replies before yours. As my subtle text in parentheses indicates, I don't really recommend leaving your console running for that long.

It's hard to tell how a failing battery might behave (other than the fact that it will inevitably cease to work altogether at some point in the very near future), so replacing it with a new one is still the best option.
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Re: How to Save in DKR without a Rumble Pack

Postby WesternTanager794 » January 26th, 2023, 10:53 am

Ok! Thanks for the help! I did assume you were joking, though. :parry:
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