YouTuber Shows Off Rare Konami Q-Ta Adapter and Game

Getting the game running required emulation, a difficult task for these Q-Ta games, but the hope is it will help others do the same and keep these pieces of history alive.

Chances are most people don't remember Konami's Q-Ta adapter and educational games, but that might change as a rare piece of video game history was recently found and uploaded online for all to see.

In the 1980s, Konami developed an adapter for the Famicom called the Q-Ta. It was specially designed to play cartridges Konami made in partnership with Japan's national broadcasting company NHK.

These Q-Ta games were meant to be educational — not like Ys Typing Tutor or no one's favorite game Mario's Early Years: Fun with Letters. Instead, these were meant to introduce children to concepts like space and astronomy.

Some were even geared toward adults, like The Gentle Physics and Science of Hazardous Materials Kotaku reported on last year, which was developed for the Idemitsu Kosan petroleum company as a way to train employees.

As one would expect, these Q-Ta games aren't easy to find — and they tend to be very expensive when they go up for auction, not unlike other rare retro titles. However, Russian YouTuber "Russian Geek" purchased the Q-Ta adapter and a game in the Space School series, then documented the process of getting it playable on an emulator. 

Other games for the Q-Ta have had their ROMs dumped online in previous years, though the process of running them on emulators wasn't widely known.

Now, there an adapter out in the wild for all to see working. The hope is that Russian Geek's finds will help make it easier for others to emulate Q-Ta games in the future and keep this aspect of gaming history alive for a long time to come.


Josh Broadwell started gaming in the early '90s. But it wasn't until 2017 he started writing about them, after finishing two history degrees and deciding a career in academia just wasn't the best way forward. You'll usually find him playing RPGs, strategy games, or platformers, but he's up for almost anything that seems interesting.

Published Aug. 29th 2019

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