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Akumajou Special: Boku Dracula-kun

24 January 2003 - Reflection by Kitsune Sniper

Reflection

I first started this project on June 17, 2000. I was still a newcomer to the whole translation business back then… and I had a firm grasp of the basics by then. This was the second project I officially announced at the then existing Sniperside Translations website.

Back then… as usual, I made a “TRANSLATE ME PLEASE” patch with a bit of progress I’d done. Which was just a bit of editing to the status bar and the “game over” screen. I kept working on the game itself until July 4, 2000, because I had to go work for a month in the US of A. I made 300 bucks! But my brother didn’t pay me the rest of the money. Ah well, I got a nice video card out of it. ;p

A little more than a year after the first version of the patch was released, I decided to finish up the game. So, I commissioned my friend Mattasaur [http://matt.sigh.org/] to whip me up a new title and “The End” screen. He agreed, and he sent me his designs on… September 21, 2001. So after converting the title screen to the NES format, and inserting it, and editing the PRG so the game would display it correctly… I was happy. That alone must’ve taken me like two days.

And so I set about adding the rest of the stuff… only to find out that the game CRASHED. I didn’t know why, but the game refused to run in certain emulators, and when it did run, every single enemy and platform in all stages after stage one would not show up. Mad, I quit working on the game, but didn’t really mention it to anyone. And so it stayed. I poked at the game every now and then, but didn’t really pay attention to it.

In October 2002, I decided to translate as much stuff as I could to the game and release a Halloween patch. So, I applied the last patch I’d publically released to a fresh rom and translated the bonus stage text. After that was done, I released it, with a plea for help hidden inside some comments that I needed ASM help to figure out what was causing the crashes in the game.

On December 30, 2002, the miracle happened. KingMike figured out what was causing the crashes in Kid Dracula! He gave me the info on the cause of the problems, and Deltaflame told me how to apply the changes that KingMike told me about. When I realized that the hack worked, I spent every waking minute [no, I'm not kidding] finishing up the patch. Everything was done… except two bits of text I couldn’t find. I -thought- that they were compressed, but a bit of luck proved otherwise. The encoding for the letters was completely different in the screens where the messages were displayed; I had to rewrite the table to compensate for those changes. And change the CHR mappings as well. But eventually, it was done.

I made the final changes on January 5… and played through the entire game, looking for any mistakes and try and fix them. So, considering the game finished, I uploaded it to my site and gave news of it in various places. But it seemed that the game over screen wasn’t done! A small mistake. :p I fixed it and uploaded the fixed patch to my site.

Many people contributed to the script’s translation; the problem is that I’m not sure who did what anymore, since it’s been so long. Akujin did the main translation, while D-Boy, Ian Kelley and Tomato did the rest. Maybe Shih Tzu did something else, I don’t know for certain.

And that’s how the fourth project finished by Kitsune Sniper came to be.