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Author Topic: Final Fantasy IV: Combat Boost! (A Final Fantasy IV Hack) (88%) v0.19 Available!  (Read 45794 times)

Grimoire LD

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Re: Final Fantasy IV: Combat Boost! (A Final Fantasy IV Hack) 81% Complete
« Reply #20 on: March 05, 2014, 08:56:59 pm »
This update has been a bit of time coming. I always liked that The After Years made the Devil's Road (Serpent Road in this) into an actual area so I took my own interpretation of it.

The party of Palom/Porom/Tellah is highly unique in that there is a strong focus on magic moreso than anything, but the problem with the party formation is that it's only around for half of a pretty small area. I decided to let this crew tackle another area called the Serpent Road.

The unique enemies here are inescapable and each one has their own powerful tactics against the player.



The area is based around fake walls so there is a heavy element of trickery and because of this the place becomes labyrinthine with false leads and dashed hope (remember this Is a difficulty hack as well, hehe)

The enemies here are more geared towards this party, but I made one specific decision. Each enemy here would be resistant to Bio (Virus). Which will be the only spell in the game to be Immune Elemental. Which means that you may find it dealing 1 damage to some foes you might not expect it to.




You may find your weapons lacking in damage...



But there are ways around that! The unique enemies in the Serpent Road are mostly Mage types, which if Palom is sufficiently leveled or Tellah sufficiently geared he can cast the new spell Aura on Cecil and give him several Strong Against certain races of Foe.



This makes Cecil's damage go from that to this....

(Note: In this particular picture Cecil is using the Traveler's Knife which has a chance to cast Scan on hit which it did here, and that is why Scan is displayed as if Cast... because it was cast along with damage)

If you find your lack of strong damage against these foes as worrying, you may use Tellah's Piercing Sight spell to randomly change the elemental weakness of the foe!




Now it is weak to Fire which Tellah or Palom can exploit to the fullest!



With these new tools at your disposal the harrowing Serpent Road will still be a trek, but it is doable, make no mistake about it.

However this is the point in the game where the player should adapt to their new toys or else they will be outclassed by many manner of foes moving forward.

SirRob

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Wow, a lot of work has gone into this so far. Liking some of the changes and influences from FFIV TAY and the other ideas. Looking forward to playing through again with these changes, it looks like it will surely be the "Combat Boost" to change up the game's replayability,

Recklessly Impressionable

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I had to comment on how amazing your work is looking Grimoire. The Matrix Software version of FF IV may have increased the difficulty but everything else i think was done better in the SNES version, and with all the features in your hack, it would certainly be the new definitive version of the game.

Grimoire LD

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Thank you very much Recklessly Impressionable and SirRob. I've been tweaking some things. I noticed that while I made enemies more powerful the new abilities and equipment don't quite stack up, so I changed the entire Glove/Ring "system" Of FFIV and made them all accessories that people can equip in the style of FFVI's Relics (sort of, not really) so a smart and observant player can say... equip a Star Pendant when fighting Hydra's or the Germinas Ring to prevent being Stunned from Guards in the Waterway. Proper status defense may be important but if you plan accordingly you should come out fine. Though I should note that generally you will only get 1 of a variety of Accessory from a new joining character, you can Win additional accessories from certain monsters though, after all every Drop Table has been revamped with an emphasis on variety.

Grimoire LD

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It has been quite a while, but I am fully done with testing... up until the same point. I had to do multiple run throughs to make sure everything worked optimally and it does appear now as if that is the case.

So yes, I am still just at Kainazzo/Cagnazzo, but all of the new commands are now working optimally. Because of the vast amount of rare items that can be collected from lucky enemy drops (or purposeful grinding with the Item Seeker Knife) each playthrough (to this point) has been quite unique.

Of note I have also disabled the Defense Multipliers from Shield Bearers when they equip Shields. That was making it nightmarish to balance because I was balancing it against Shielded Cecil who I also wanted to take damage just like anyone else, but the original setup of the game is not so thoughtful in that regard.

Just a slight update on saying what the holdup has been. The Accessory system mentioned above works great, equipping the right thing (if you were lucky enough to get it) could at times mean the difference between victory and defeat.

In addition the Twins now have a third Twincast Spell called "Dark Holy" (FFT Reference) It is Dark and Holy Elemental, has high damage output and can Blind foes.


EDIT: Baigan and Cagnazzo are now done. Though on the surface they may seem a bit simple, they are quite dangerous foes with several different new tactics that they utilize while battling them, they will not be the simple affairs of the original game.

Also Cid is now fully tested and his abilities work in an ideal fashion. Coat Weapon works perfectly, Advance effects his Attack and Defense in the order I had hoped and Item Lord is looking good as always.



July 23, 2014, 09:40:41 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
The Overworld foes are now completely finished! The ones that you can get access to with the Airship are each challenging in their own respects.

Also instead of getting rid of Defense Multipliers (one every 16 Agility is not very plausible...) I changed the system entirely. Now instead of looking at every 16th Level and if you have a shield equipped Defense Multipliers are now One every 16 Vitality Period. So it increases the worth of Vitality as I had noticed that my system was sort of making Defense itself rather worthless on its own, but this increases the importance of Vitality by a ton.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2014, 09:40:51 pm by Grimoire LD »

Grimoire LD

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Alright, this mod is now complete up until the Dark Elf! While using Cid, I realized that he was not as useful as I had hoped. In some respects he'll be a late bloomer. His damage output at this point is... decent, but is helped immensely by his new ability Coat Hammer combined with the new item Homing Device. While testing out Coat Hammer (looks for a status inflicting item in the first slot, if it finds it then it applies the status that would be healed to Cid's weapon) For instance, if you use an Antidote - Poison would be applied to the weapon. I added two new functions to this command

If you use the former Gysahl Greens (completely worthless in this hack as Whistles are sold in every shop for a measly 10 Gold, making it so you don't have to worry too much about inventory space.) now called Homing Device (Accomplished by using, the now unused Wrench icon and writing "(Wrench) Homing".) Cid will have 255 Accuracy for the battle, which means that his other Coat Hammer Statuses will 100% apply to an enemy, if the enemy doesn't resist it.  They are available in every shop and  In addition Cid can use the Drain Item (VampFang in this hack) and apply that to his weapon to give himself Drain Elemental for the battle, giving him some much needed survivability, if you're lucky enough to have some (enemies throughout the game have a chance to drop it so finding them isn't that much out of the way). This should give him some of the early game versatility and make him different from Yang and Tellah enough to make him stand out.

Item Lord though really will shine late game. There are few items at the point in the game you get him that you would want to split (except status healing items when you're hit with an unlucky amount of statuses on the party at once). But late game Cid can use Hermes Shoes, Moon Veils, Elixirs, and Couerl Whiskers (Death) to change the tide of battle in a real and meaningful way (unfortunately I could not get Revives/Phoenix Downs to work with Item Lord unfortunately. That might have been a bit broken anyhow) but if you're willing to use one of those precious Drain Fangs you will likely be able to Drain back to full health as it hits all foes  (Kind of a reverse Sylph in some respects)

Also, I've changed the function of the Uncurse Potion (Cross in most other versions) to also remove Sleep and Stun. I got rid of the Eggtimer (Alarm Clock) early on and replaced it with a Frog-All item, but I've put in a fair amount of enemies that Sleep or Stun, and Panaceas (Unicorn Horns) are an expensive ware. This will be extremely useful with Cid's ItemLord ability early on, without a doubt.

Recklessly Impressionable

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Re: Final Fantasy IV: Combat Boost! (A Final Fantasy IV Hack) 85% Complete
« Reply #26 on: August 02, 2014, 01:42:45 am »
I'm always happy to see new updates; "Dark Holy" and the Cid changes all seem like neat ideas

Grimoire LD

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Re: Final Fantasy IV: Combat Boost! (A Final Fantasy IV Hack) 85% Complete
« Reply #27 on: August 19, 2014, 01:09:51 am »
Well, I am now finished all the way up to the End of the Overworld section. That's nearly half the game down! These last few weeks have been spent fine-tuning and testing every foe to make sure they were defeatable and to assure that the challenge was consistent, but fair to the player. The Tower of Zot ups the ante once more, but should be kept level with the levels gained in the Magnetic Cave. Status effects, status guards, proper equipment optimization and knowing the roles you want your characters to play will be essential to win now. (Granted you weren't exactly coasting by in earlier areas)

Cid will become an incredible asset during boss fights now with the ability to split items, especially in those unlucky turn of events where Sleep and Stun may abound. Just toss one Uncurse through Item Lord onto the party and recover. While Tellah may have had the oomph to stand alongside Cecil with a sword, it is quite likely from hereon he will be relegated to magic use. His Strength begins to lag behind and his other roles of Healer and Magic User become paramount to success.

But this is only from the Magnetic Cave to the Tower of Zot (And Eblan, by extension) that these tips apply to.

I think I am in a comfortable enough position to release a demo with "Overworld Complete" as its tag to gauge the reaction of interested players.


Now a couple of hints...

1. Always keep in mind that this is a challenge mod. While your new skills and equipment should keep pace with the game, do not fear to grind, after all, most enemies now have a rare or unique 1/32 drop that may help you on your way whether it be a new accessory or a rare weapon, you can be sure it is likely worth the effort, should you feel up to it.

2. The beginning of the game is brutal for those who don't utilize Dark Omen to its fullest potential. Remember, Dark Omen is a dark elemental spell with a good damage potential instantly killing much of the early game foes without the bat of an eyelash. It will be a lifeline in the early parts of the game.

3. Stock up on all kinds of status healing items, you can't be sure what the next foe will inflict upon you so always come prepared. With Whistles being 10 GP you will no longer have to worry too much about Item Space.

4. Make use of the new abilities. Though you really can't use Kain's Dragon Speech in your first outing with him (unless you grind to a ridiculous amount to stand on equal terms with the 1/64 enemy Mech Dragon outside of Baron...) Rydia's Geo, Edward's Bard Song, and Yang's new Gird (eventually) are helpful tools indeed. Also don't forget Rosa's entirely new skillset. Hunt will be the key to getting many unique and powerful items.

5. Be aware of the new stat bonuses. Many items that were in the original game give stat bonuses and you can be sure the new ones will too. There isn't an Item Description for them (Yet) so make sure to check on your own.

6. Take advantage of enemy types! The Traveler Knife, if you are lucky enough to obtain it deals heavy damage to Beast-type enemies

And that should be all the hints needed! I think... if you have any questions, complaints, bugs (not visual though, I'm aware of many of the in-battle graphical anomalies which may occur with my hacks) please, post them here.

(I would have attached it directly to this post, but it seems I'm unable to do thaat for some reason)

Final Fantasy IV-Combat Boost! (Overworld Complete) (Beta0.03)

WARNING: Must Be An Unheadered Rom!
« Last Edit: August 19, 2014, 08:53:01 am by Grimoire LD »

Recklessly Impressionable

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Grimoire..... you're killin' me man :D I'm excited to test out this beta and give you some feedback but all the rpgs i've been looking forward to all year are coming out now all at once (Tales of Xillia2, Wasteland2, etc.) so it might be a bit before i try this but i surely will before long. FF IV is one of my fav games, although i don't think anyone has got it right yet with the remakes and revisions i've seen so far, but the work you're doing here seems excellent, thanks

Grimoire LD

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Heh, no problem with timing. I'm just curious if I'm making a hack purely for myself and my tastes or if I'm making something some select others may also enjoy.

As for this "revision" I assure you it can't be considered as "getting it right". I gave nearly every character a bunch of new toys to play with and created scenarios of enemies where they can take full advantage of their new skills. I suspect the challenge will turn a lot of people off of it, if they were to give it a chance.

NinjaTurtle82

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Final Fantasy IV's my favorite game in the series because it was the first RPG I've beaten. Well, that and the story was good. And now I see this, and looks like to be yet another fun way to play what's already a masterpiece. Good work so far, GrimoireLD, and I hope the final product will be a blast to play.

Chickenlump

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I'm just curious if I'm making a hack purely for myself and my tastes or if I'm making something some select others may also enjoy.

Oh, no, I'd love to play your modification of this game. I'm going to wait until it's pretty much complete before getting too into it though.
I've read the thread a couple of different times, and love the changes you've made thus far.

Grimoire LD

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Thanks for the encouragement NinjaTurtle82 and Chickenlump and while I do appreciate the sentiment that people would like to try a finished product, it would be a little heartbreaking to build this mod up to that state of development and see that it is virtually incompatible with anybody else's taste. As the maker my changes come across as natural to me and so because I created them I adapt to them very easily, but I don't know if anyone else will follow through with that same mindset or if the ideas synthesize well for anyone else.

Well no matter, I'm still debating whether I want to put random encounters in Eblan Castle (so the player can't just waltz up (to the trapped chests) and take the goodies inside) and I'm on the fence of adding another mini-dungeon like section in order to get the Magma Stone or possibly after the airship has crashed to be able to have the extremely short lived party of Cid, Kain, Rosa, Yang, and Cecil be able to show their abilities together.

Also gives the Gaea Hammer more room to breathe than a single room in the Tower of Zot, because that's how you design games, right? You make a weapon that you get at the End of the dungeon for a character you're going to be losing after a half of an hour! I love FFIV, it's my favorite game of all time, but sometimes the design philosophies do make me shake my head.

KingMike

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Also gives the Gaea Hammer more room to breathe than a single room in the Tower of Zot, because that's how you design games, right? You make a weapon that you get at the End of the dungeon for a character you're going to be losing after a half of an hour! I love FFIV, it's my favorite game of all time, but sometimes the design philosophies do make me shake my head.
Never gotten Aeris' Level 4 Limit Break. Didn't she also get her ultimate weapon for only a short time too?
(then again her Healing Wind Limit Break was so useful I never really used anything else. Wasn't it like 50% HP recovery for the entire party?)
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Mauron

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Never gotten Aeris' Level 4 Limit Break. Didn't she also get her ultimate weapon for only a short time too?
(then again her Healing Wind Limit Break was so useful I never really used anything else. Wasn't it like 50% HP recovery for the entire party?)

Her level 4 limit break was stupidly powerful. It made the party invincible. I got it once.
Mauron wuz here.

chillyfeez

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Hey Grimoire LD,
I'm playing Combat Boost now.
Took me a couple of tries to figure out the patch should be applied to a nonheadered ROM  :o
Anyway. I'm only done with the Mist Cave thus far and I have a few bits of feedback...
1) seems both DK Cecil & Kain's special abilities are called "White." I'm thinking that's probably not what you had intended. My Kain doesn't have any abilities at all yet, but it definitely seems wrong for the Dark Knight to be using any ability called White, especially since the abilities therein are not spells but sword techniques.
2) as a habitual RPG grinder, I like that the rewards for doing so are tangible. I got the Cockatrice Summon orb unexpectedly, then I got two thief knives (from separate battles), and with a thief knife was able to obtain the Imp orb.
3) BUT... On the subject of the thief knife... Only Cecil seems to be stealing when using it. When Kain uses it, I get the first half of the Peep/Scan visual, but nothing else. Is this intentional? If so, what exactly is happening here? Because it's not really clear...

Anyway, I imagine this will take a while, so I'll check back in as more comes up.

:addendum: after Rydia summons Titan in Mist, the scene in the forest clearing takes place in the wrong x,y orientation.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2014, 01:23:33 am by chillyfeez »
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Grimoire LD

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Thanks for giving this a look Chillyfeez, please recall it is complete all the way up through the Overworld. Once the plot directs you to go to the Underworld the enemies and chests are unmodded from there.

Ah, yes that is intended *for the moment* the sword techniques are in the White Magic Spellbook (01-14) and you know the weirdness with trying to learn spells outside of their natural spellbook (doesn't seem to really work).

Kain's spellbook is White because he learns magic from wounded Dragons of which contains Dragon Magic and White Magic, there are no dragons in the first section with him (none that you would be able to actually fight without dying). There are two in the Overworld, one you'll likely come across. The other, you may need a Siren.

Yes, I tried to do my best to upgrade the drop charts to be useful, Imps drop Thief Knives and stealing is the best way to get several summons.

That Kain cannot use the Thief Knife (or any special command weapon correctly) is an unfortunate side effect of my Imbued Weapons routine only looking at the Right Hand. Palom has the same effect as well. I was very strapped for space so I couldn't include Left Handed functionality. I suppose I could just make Palom and Kain right-handed or not allow them to equip any Imbued Weapons. Or I could look at including left-handed functionality down the line.

The Forest cutscene being screwed up is an old bug in Vivify's Project II which I fixed... for Project II, I never got around to fixing it in Combat Boost since it was such a minor problem and didn't cause any adverse effects.

For basic hints on what some of the new commands do and the changes in battle system you may want to check out the Training Room, all of the text has been changed to accommodate the new player of this hack.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2014, 01:38:08 am by Grimoire LD »

chillyfeez

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You've done a great job , by the way, of making it just hard enough that I die if I stop paying attention.
I'm used to blowing through the game at least until Octomamm. Admittedly, I lost to the Mist Dragon the first time around, and got dangerously critical against the Baron soldiers in Kaipo. I may have to consult with you when the time comes to seriously balance the monsters in my own hack.
:edit: OK, trying to keep Rydia alive when you first get her is REALLY frustrating. One hit from anything kills her, and I don't really make enough gold from the battle to sleep in the inn to reviver her AND buy a revive potion for next time.

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That Kain cannot use the Thief Knife (or any special command weapon correctly) is an unfortunate side effect of my Imbued Weapons routine only looking at the Right Hand. Palom has the same effect as well. I was very strapped for space so I couldn't include Left Handed functionality. I suppose I could just make Palom and Kain right-handed or not allow them to equip any Imbued Weapons. Or I could look at including left-handed functionality down the line.
That sort of thing is kinda my specialty. I may be able to whip up a fix for that if you show me the disassembly of the imbued weapons code. If you want.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2014, 02:31:08 am by chillyfeez »
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Grimoire LD

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Thanks for the balancing bit, I'm not too sure how you'll feel when you get a little further though, heh.

Keeping Rydia alive is quite difficult, yes. I was wondering if I should just take the FFIV DS route and make her Level 5 or 10 by default, but it's all a matter of hitting the right amount of luck for the start. Dark Omen is your best friend though. If you can lower the enemy's stats with Curse you should eventually be able to take out the enemies from thereon while keeping Rydia alive.

If worst comes to worst you can run into the Old Waterway, grab Tellah, and use him as a buffer. While it may make leveling take a little longer (sort of, I balanced Exp. to be higher all around) it may be less frustrating in the long run.

Sure, I'll send you the routine, if you can make it work within the same amount of bytes that I have the current Imbued Weapons Routine in (since nearly all other free space is used up) that would be wonderful.

chillyfeez

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Yeah, I finally figured out I should be using Dark Omen early on. A suggestion - I won't be offended if you toss it right out - maybe increase Rydia's HP growth ever so slightly for the first few levels? It could even be balanced out by reducing it for the next few levels... Just something to get her more quickly past the ~45 HP hump so she can withstand at least one hit. The most frustrating part about the experience was that she remained a one-shot wonder for every enemy in the area until level 4 or 5. So the routine of Fight Battle, Use Dark Omen, GoBack to Kaipo to Rest, Repeat... dragged on a bit too long.

Question about Cecil's Sword Skills - is there any indication of success? I have not once had a visible reaction when using one. I'm not playing through on Geiger's (to discourage myself from cheating and thereby bastardizing my true reaction), so I can't just open the hex viewer to check the target's stats.

I'll take a look at that routine. What I'll probably end up doing is plugging in a "quick detour" out of the 3/0000 block into some empty space to do a "handedness" check, then decide which hand to check for weapon imbuement based on the result. It'll work. I ran out of space in the 3/0000 block in my own hack ages ago, so I've employed that method before. Won't take too long, but I probably won't be able to work on it until tomorrow.
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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