Learn How to Perform the Sega Saturn Swap Trick

For those of you who want to play backups of some of your classic Sega Saturn games, but don’t want to mod your machine, you need to learn how to perform the swap trick. This involves using an original copy of any Saturn game and then swapping in the backup disk before the machine knows what’s going on. For more details, check out these helpful links.

Swap Trick Overview
Additional Swap Info with Model 2 Saturn
Swap with Pro Action Replay
Swap with Model 2 Video

I must admit, the swap trick isn’t especially easy. If you have a model 2 Saturn (round buttons) it is a major pain. If you are only going to be doing it a few times on a Model 1 (oval buttons) it’s bearable. However, if you’re going to be playing burned discs on normal basis, save yourself some grief and get a mod chip.

8 Comments

  1. Synthetic 8 says:

    Double Swap technique for Sega Saturn Model one with an Ultra Madness 4M Cart(to play cdr imports duh) by Synthetic 8:

    1
    Put in the CDR of the game you want to play and turn on your Saturn.

    2
    watch the drivelight blink once and quickly swap it with an original saturn cd.

    3
    Wait until the drivelight flashes 3x quickly, then put in the CDR again.

    4
    press the button for play game.

    5
    Repeat steps 1,2, and 3.

    The game should work like the real deal.

  2. PaulinhoX says:

    Yes, Hello! Thanks for narrowing down the trick to few easy steps. Haven’t tried the x2 swap tech. but i dont understand what you mean by pressing the start button >< … do you mean on the saturn dashboard? Anyhow, the single techc works great although just when you think its too good to be true, it stalls on a loading screen with music still playing… specifically speaking of “Shining the Holy Ark” burned CD… which works perfectly on a PC emulator such as SSF or Satourne… /sigh. Any who can set this matter straight, or possibily devise a solution for me would be deeply appreciated!

  3. Anonymous says:

    I also get a crash while playing my burned virtual on, it will let you play from anywhere in game from 20 seconds to 45 seconds and then lock up

  4. racketboy says:

    Are you sure the ISO isn’t just bad?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Hello racketboy. Thanks for this tutorial, but I had a problem with it.

    I have 3 Sega Saturn games, 1 PAL and 2 JAP Import. My Saturn is model 2, PAL version. I always use Action Replay 4MB with it.

    Ok, the problem I have is loading some games. I do the swap trick as you say, but some games just stuck at the SEGA screen. As far as I know, there’s nothing I can do but to try other original games than the ones I have, that’s why I ask a person like you, with lot of experience about this. What games are best to load the most number of games by using them?. A friend has a game called Evangelion Digital Card Library (JAP) which loads everything he has, and he has more than 50 games of all kind, JAP USA and PAL. I tried to search it, but never found it, so I have to find a PAL game which is equal to it. By the way, how many games have you got? I think we all can make a list of games that boot with other games and so on, so all of us can make a 100% working list, would be great. Well, thanks for helping!

  6. Leo says:

    is possible damaged console with swap trick?

  7. racketboy says:

    It can cause some damage — especially if you don’t do it well — it often tugs at your CD drive motor. You may want to consider a modchip if you wish to preserve your Saturn.

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