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Messages - Nightcrawler

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ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: SA-1 register $2225?
« on: March 08, 2014, 04:03:44 pm »
If I understand correctly then the SA-1 can see the entire  BW-RAM (mapping both 40-4F/60-6F spaces) but the SNES only sees half (the 40-4F portion)?

Right on that. I think your general understanding of the points you mentioned are also correct.

Certainly the SA-1 has great potential to hombrew if it could be fully leveraged. As you know, there is a pretty big learning curve to really being able to take advantage of this setup. It's of little surprise that most commercial games utilizing the SA-1 didn't even take full potential of it either. It's probably the most advanced and versatile of all of the add-on chips.

Site Talk / Re: mteam's Translation Fixes
« on: March 07, 2014, 08:46:28 pm »
Absolutely. Different sources can generate different hashes for the same functional ROM depending on whether or not they included header information in the hash. Most people provide the hash from a given known database like NoIntro etc. and specify the source of the hash. This avoids any confusion and will be applicable to most older translations.

In other cases where a straight file hash is appropriate because no ROM database options exists, it is recommended to provide the file hash with no header (strip it entirely off) and note the hash was calculated as such. Regardless, the source of the hash is critical for others to come up with a match.

I don't believe zeroing out the header bytes is the same as stripping them off entirely for hash calculations. I think those algorithms differentiate between that that. A quick test seemed to generate different hashes with CRC32 for example. Can someone confirm?

That looks great to me! Nobody makes 'em like you do. :)

Front Page News / Re: ROM Hacks: New Hacks Added to the Database
« on: March 07, 2014, 06:45:49 pm »
Right. It's unplayable. Both snarfblam and mrrichard999 confirmed and it was flagged as non-compliant. One of these days we'll have a publicly available listing of all the flagged non-compliant material and reasons given to avoid confusion and attempts to re-add. Such information is being kept in the submission logs like the rest of the submissions. :)

EDIT: I should note this information IS already publicly available for the past 30 days in the change log (By clicking on Changes on the top bar site menu).

Site Talk / Re: mteam's Translation Fixes
« on: March 06, 2014, 08:12:04 pm »
No problem, I can resubmit them myself. Is this a recent policy change? My rationale behind submitting those fixes as hacks and not translations was that I haven't touched on any of their scripts and that the patches are useless without the original translations.

Thanks mziab. :) The Addendum category has been around for quite some time. The intention is Addendums to Translations belong in the Translations section and Addendums to Hacks belong in the Hacks section.

It might also be worthwhile to edit the descriptions of the originals translations to notify visitors that your fixed patch exists, otherwise people continue to find the original old translations and might not be aware of your patches.

Site Talk / mteam's Translation Fixes
« on: March 05, 2014, 08:14:45 pm »
One of mteam's translation fixes was flagged as non-compliant for removal because they are addendums to translations and thus belong in the Translation section rather than the Hacks section. There are a total of three of these:

There's no way possible to convert hacks to translations (or vice versa). Can somebody with some free time please submit these appropriately as Translations so they are not lost. The catch is, the system requires ROM/ISO Information on all new submissions, which was not previously provided on those entries.

These hacks fix some of the most notoriously broken translations in history. We don't want to loose them!

Site Talk / Re: Bizarre site connectivity issues
« on: February 20, 2014, 08:11:45 pm »
There was a DDoS attack on the DNS server (hosted separately from our server). It has been mitigated and normal service should return soon.

Our server is happy, working fine, and recently backed up. :)

Site Talk / Re: Anti-Piracy Circumvention Measures
« on: February 15, 2014, 01:41:24 pm »
I share Pennywise's sentiments. However, thinking in terms of policy and what has been said here, the only way something like this fits into the context of our site would be as an intended improvement for others to base their hack on, or potentially a bug fix as is the case for unreleased games. I don't think it justifies itself as an improvement, and I don't think we want to inadvertently pave the way for cracks or anti-piracy material for later systems which is a whole different world. We're left with Bug Fix, and that primarily lends itself to unreleased (or maybe satellite) games which is one of the only legitimate reasons to have such a thing here. Such games require such fixes to function at all.

So, how about keeping it simple and allowing such hacks only in the context of a Bug Fix, which really only applies to unreleased type games?

Under that:
1. I'd say remove that Datach entry as that would not fall under this rule.
2. The 40 Winks entry can stay as it is required for the game to function.
3. General anti-piracy submissions should be rejected.

Site Talk / Re: Homebrew Section?
« on: February 08, 2014, 04:41:27 pm »
Although a license section is not a bad idea at all, I don't think it's a worthwhile time investment the way things stand. Unfortunately I imagine somewhere in the range of 85% - 95% of material on this site has no distribution or license information. And 50% of those doesn't even have a readme! With such a small fraction of cases where it is even applicable, one can be referred to the readme (if that even exists). It could be argued that it could still help with awareness to try and turn the tides, but it has been an ugly uphill struggle with the ROM/ISO Information which was intended to do the same. I doubt the submission reviewers want another problematic field that the vast majority of our patrons are completely uneducated about.

While I also generally agree with demos and unfinished work being undesirable, I wonder with all of those excluded how much material is left? What about something like an HDMA demo on the SNES? I think a good chunk of homebrew is tech demos like that. Should they all be excluded? I think there is alot of educational value in such 'demos', especially if source code is included. So, there is still the question of whether there is enough homebrew material out there to make the section worthwhile if such things are excluded. Perhaps we should gather up a list here of what's out there that could potentially be added to the section upon launch. We can see what's out there and what we're dealing with. We'd also have a nice compiled list here in the meantime regardless of the section development.

Site Talk / Re: Homebrew Section?
« on: February 06, 2014, 06:13:10 pm »
If they are selling their software, it's not homebrew, it's commercial by definition. Commercial has no place in this section. If such material were to be uploaded, it could be flagged and removed as non-compliant with policy. The possibility of non-compliant uploads exists the same in this section as any other section. I don't see any distinction.

With that said, it might speed this section along if someone were to hash out what specific fields would be expected or needed in the form for such a section, and what you might want the guidelines to be. When I got around to it, I was just going to say take the Hacks form, remove non-applicable fields, keep the applicable ones, and add any that might be need to be added (none immediately came to mind). ROMs would of course be allowed for homebrew as they would be legal as far as I know. Otherwise, I imagine it wouldn't look much different than our Hack or Translation subpages.

Site Talk / Re: Homebrew Section?
« on: February 05, 2014, 07:54:15 pm »
I will probably go ahead with adding the homebrew section. It's probably quite a way off though.

It would probably be nice to link to RPGe's translation in the description so people unfamiliar with it will know what it is.

Thanks. This game does not make it easy, that's for sure. This thread reminded me to throw a quick update up over at TransCorp with a few more WIP screens on the direction it has been going. :)

For any Heracles III fans who don't know, Kay whom translated Heracles III, has also translated the TransCorp's script for Heracles IV. So, they will have some consistency and I imagine will sound similar in tone when finally complete. It's a nice luxury for fan translations when sequels are able to be done by the same people.

Site Talk / Re: My News Articles not listed on my Profile
« on: February 04, 2014, 03:29:39 pm »
There was still a lingering issue from listing the old news (from when the news was standalone) that was interfering with the new news (when it was integrated into general submissions). I think it's all sorted out now. :)

Me too. World premier WIP screenie to keep the Heracles fanfare alive! :beer:

Site Talk / Re: Ridiculously Long Usernames
« on: January 23, 2014, 08:01:54 pm »
Either a mod can chop it down to size or we can add overflow: hidden to the CSS to truncate it. Whichever.

Programming / Re: Getting Started on a VWF?
« on: January 20, 2014, 07:54:29 pm »
Yep, that's pretty much it. Now you're catching on. ;)

I hope I did not confuse you with the wrong idea about the ROM though. While all of this pre-rendered static data is in-fact in the ROM, you still must copy/DMA it all to available VRAM space and map the appropriate tiles to it so it shows up on screen. You can't display anything straight from the ROM. I'm sure you did just that with the example you've pictured though or it wouldn't have worked!

I can't comment on ToP or BL as I haven't played or looked at either in ages. There could be more than one reason why one would be speedier than the other. You'll have to dig deeper and see what's being done if you're interested.

Gaming Discussion / Re: Nintendo Admits Wii U Is A Flop? Interesting...
« on: January 20, 2014, 07:41:52 pm »
I agree that it's not the input method that's the problem, it's the implementation.  The stylus works very well for the things it was designed for, and not so well when it's trying to do things better accomplished with buttons.

I think what makes me the most upset is one method or the other is typically forced upon us. Why can't they just allow alternate input configurations as standard so you COULD use the stylus or motion controls if you want, or those same functions could be mapped via buttons (to an extent where possible). Then we could we could play many of those in between games with the control scheme that makes sense to the individual. Obviously there are some games which it isn't really feasible to replace the motion controls or stylus, but that usually means the game was smartly designed to take best advantage of said input. :)

I know some games do actually do this, but not nearly enough! On the PC, I can practically use anything I want to control my games from a touchscreen to a Wiimote and everything in between! :P I can map it all in whatever haphazard way makes sense to me if I choose. For everyone else, the default will do, but at least there are options.

Gaming Discussion / Re: Nintendo Admits Wii U Is A Flop? Interesting...
« on: January 19, 2014, 07:53:10 pm »
I think honestly the only reason it's mostly over is because no one figured out how to make new styles of games with motion controls. Mostly they tried to either adapt existing games to motion controls(See a lot of ports of games that also have PS2 versions on the Wii) or they tried to adapt existing genres without seriously rethinking them.

I think I might agree with this. The vast majority of Wii games were continually designed in such a way that they didn't need any motion controls to play equally as well. There simply wasn't many innovative titles that utilized the Wiimote in a new and exciting, game changing way. After the general public got tired of Wii Sports and realized it wasn't that great, they quickly moved on. ;D The rest of the fans got saddled with titles like New Super Mario Brothers requiring motions controls when it really didn't benefit in any way from motion controls. Thus the motion controls came as a tacked on 'waggle' gimmick to many games, similar to the stylus usage on the DS. There is just way to much poor usage of these additions that it overshadows any real smart innovative ones.

Programming / Re: Getting Started on a VWF?
« on: January 19, 2014, 07:44:29 pm »
That almost sounds like 'faking' a VWF by using the graphics tiles in ROM as different 8x8 blocks.

There's nothing fake about it. A proportional font is a proportional font whether it is pre-rendered and static or dynamically rendered and done in real time. Regardless of what you think about it, that's simply what the article is about. I'm just explaining it to you.

I didn't think you could store the data straight INTO ROM though and use it from there.

Of course you can. Render all of the menus and grab the resulting tiles. Render ALL of the items in the game and gather those results. Do whatever you need to do to pre-render the text to get the results. Then, assemble a new ROM and store them all in the ROM. That's precisely what static rendering implies for this. It's pre-rendered, it's static. You are no longer dynamically rendering the text. You're not drawing to RAM, you're not drawing to anything but the tilemap, and even that can be statically stored in the ROM too. This the way it is done in 2 frames as demonstrated by the article.

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