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Author Topic: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)  (Read 17058 times)

KillerBob

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The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« on: July 10, 2015, 05:40:21 pm »
Hi there, I've been working on a simple relocalization of the original The Legend of Zelda where I'm mostly have taken use of Clyde "Mato" Mandelin's excellent translations. It has been more or less finished for quite some time but being quite new to the world of rom hacking I hit a wall on two things I wanted accomplished.  :banghead: So I'm posting here in the hope some of you great people could help me out.

My first problem is the Save Option Screen. The original Japanese options says Continue, Quit and Retry or Start Over I guess along with their English counterparts. The last option made a lot of sense on the FDS system as it brings you back to the Select Screen without the need to insert Side A then switch to Side B and then try again. NES owners could as well hit the reset on the actual console instead.

Anyway, I wanted to have it centered and expand the text but in doing so the flashing red palette seen when you select one of the options doesn't match the lenght of the text and its position and the heart cursor is obviously still in the original position. So my problem is, I havent't been able to find where the cursor and flashing red palette for the text is located in the rom. Anyone familiar with the rom who can please help me out with this. I guess I could drop the & Quit part but why make it easy for yourself.  ;)

Left: original Right: mockup

My second problem is the dialog of Zelda in the ending. Her lines were the only ones which weren't updated to be typed without additional spacing. The Japanese text is always written on two lines with additional space between the lines for readability and allocated for special characters I guess. The NES version used that space in order to fit one additional line of text except for this single line. I thought it would be nice to have some consistency but have been unable to solve this. Any idea if it's possible and where the pointer for that text is. Any help would be greatly appreciated. The rom I'm working with is the PRG0 version.


Btw, here's my text cleanup done on the opening screens:



I restored the foliage next to the title in the story which went missing when they added The to the title and restored the parchment paper that Link is holding from the Japanese original as I always thought the NES version looked poor in comparison. Not the best line breaks on it but I think it's an overall improvement. The story text is far from perfect but the color coding and limited time it's on the screen makes it a bitch working on. Any feedback is of course welcomed.

Also, any suggestion on what to name the last item on the list. In the Japanese game it literally says Hidden "Triforce" of Wisdom. Being just a piece of it I wondered if anyone have any suggestion. Just have it say Triforce isn't wrong as that's what the fragments also goes by in both the Japanese and English manuals sometimes but to make things more clear, perhaps Triforce Piece/Shard/Fragment would be an alternative. I don't know, would Piece of Triforce be correct English? Leave it as it is? Thoughts?

Doing the simple work on this game have really made me appreciate all the awesome work you guys are doing in rom hacking even more. Man, it was tougher than I thought. Thanks in advance.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 10:20:25 pm by KillerBob »

KingMike

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2015, 08:37:41 pm »
With the SAVE & QUIT thing, it's probably a simple attribute table change.
Attribute table (23C0-23FF in PPU RAM) is a table where every 2 bits represents the palette for a 16x16 tile of the screen (so 1 byte is a 2x2 square of 16x16 blocks, or 32x32 pixels and 8 bytes represents 32 full pixel lines).
You can probably use FCEUX debugger. Get to the screen before it flashes, turn on the debugger add a breakpoint for writes to PPU 23C0-23FF. It should tell you up a line where the data is coming from (a memory address) If it's ROM (8000-FFFF) then you can find the data in ROM. If it's RAM (anything else), then you have to repeat the process by adding a write breakpoint for CPU on the RAM address until it gets back to ROM.

With the cursor, is it a sprite or a tile?
If it's a sprite, very easy to tell as almost every NES game (due to technical limitation) uses a table somewhere in RAM (it'll be a full $100 bytes starting somewhere in RAM at $0x00, often $200)
Since it would be the only sprite on the screen, it should be the only one with a Y-coordinate (Y-cords will be every 4th byte in the table: such as $0200, $0204, $208, $20C... $2FC) that's not $F0+ (off the visible part of the screen). Then you can use the breakpoint function or a trace log to find how that RAM address got written to.
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SCD

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2015, 08:44:16 pm »
One thing you should fix in your hack is in the Japanese version, the book was called "Bible" instead of "Book of Magic". You should rename the book back to it's original name.

stuffgnome

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2015, 09:02:24 pm »
Warning: The following reply is from someone with no hacking experience and who has just been reading posts on this site for way to long and may be under the false assumption that they understand what they are talking about.

Ok, so counting down from item 3:

#3 - Wind Waker uses the term "Triforce shard" when referring to the individual broken triforce units.
#2 - This document, "http://www.romhacking.net/documents/90/" shows a table for letters that also serve the dual purpose of serving as
        a line break it is as follows:
A - 8A
B - 8B
C - 8C
D - 8D
E - 8E
F - 8F
H - 91
I - 92
J - 93
K - 94
L - 95
M - 96
N - 97
O - 98
P - 99
Q - 9A
R - 9B
S - 9C
T - 9D
U - 9E
V - 9F
W - A0
X - A1
Y - A2
, - A8(?)
! - E9(?)
(SPACE) - 9C(?)

     I hope that the answer is that simple.

#3 - Off hand I have no clue, personally I would hope it would be as simple as using a debugger to find more or less were this event takes places and start changing values that correspond to the number of characters that appear red or distance between the heart and the last red character and changing values hoping to stumble upon the magic value. edit: Nevermind, follow the wise words of KingMike.


Chpexo

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« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2015, 09:06:16 pm »
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« Last Edit: January 01, 2016, 08:13:16 am by Chpexo »

KillerBob

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2015, 10:12:58 pm »
Thanks, KingMike for your detailed response! Will follow your advice and see if I can solve it.  :) :thumbsup:

SCD, I first changed it back to Bible when I began on it as I'm being a purist but I actually find the Book of Magic to be a great localization so I kept it. I also doubt Nintendo of America changed this due to any strict policy which they were infamous for back in the early 90's, this game came out before their policy was in place IIRC. But if you guys absolutely think it should be Bible, I guess I could change it.

stuffgnome, unfortunately it's not that easy but good thinking. This particular ending text differ from the other lines in the game. And yes, I guess Triforce Shard is a good alternative.

Chpexo, I'm familiar with all the odd changes and weird decisions in the English localization. I forgot to mention it but this will be based on the original Japanese text as I don't think the localization brought anything good to the table when it came to its text, (except the name change of the Bible) despite their original intentions. Only the Pols Voice hint which is unique to the NES version will differ from the Japanese game in terms of the script.

Thanks for the response guys!  :thumbsup:
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 10:19:08 pm by KillerBob »

SCD

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2015, 10:40:57 pm »
SCD, I first changed it back to Bible when I began on it as I'm being a purist but I actually find the Book of Magic to be a great localization so I kept it. I also doubt Nintendo of America changed this due to any strict policy which they were infamous for back in the early 90's, this game came out before their policy was in place IIRC. But if you guys absolutely think it should be Bible, I guess I could change it.

They did changed it because of religious references, Nintendo of America introduce their strict censorship policy when they first brought the Famicom over here as the NES and that is one policy I wish they never introduced in the first place because it ruined a lot of great games in my opinion. Including games like Devil World were never release here because of that.

You can always make two versions of your hack, one with the "Bible" name and the other one with the "Book of Magic" name.

I'm glad you liked our responses, keep up the great work on your project.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 11:09:59 pm by SCD »

Grimoire LD

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2015, 11:35:10 pm »
Eh, the Bible is splitting hairs and it never made much sense to me. Why would a Magical Rod become more powerful with the Power of God, and why would it shoot fire? I've seen people say the "Rod of Aaron" and all of that, but I don't recall that shooting Fire anywhere in Exodus. Magical Book makes proper sense because... a book of magic being used to enhance the Magical Rod works. The Bible enhancing the powers of a Magical Rod never made sense, especially when you consider that it's all but been written out of Zelda lore about as early as Zelda 2 where a Goddess Statue was introduced and aside from some rogue crosses, there's no more mention of the stock religious symbols the series had been using (aside from that single piece of ALttP concept art, clearly made by someone who had no idea that the game was going to be called "Triforce of the Gods".)

KillerBob

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2015, 11:44:40 pm »
They did changed it because of religious references, Nintendo of America introduce their strict censorship policy when they first brought the Famicom over here as the NES and that is one policy I wish they never introduced in the first place because it ruined a lot of great games in my opinion. Including games like Devil World were never release here because of that.
They most certainly had their guidelines even in the early days but if what is seen on this page:http://www.jjmccullough.com/nintendo.php is true it wasn't until 1988 when their strict gudelines were fully enforced. It's hard to know the reason for the change when crosses on shields, tombstones and the actual book were left alone. Water of Life can also have a religious connotation but is also a classic fantasy trope.

I'm not that well versed in religion and history but was the holy bible thought of as a grimoire/book of magic in some cultures in ancient times?

GHANMI

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2015, 01:07:48 am »
The mythology lore in the Zelda series wasn't fully established early on, so Christian imagery was frequently used in Zelda 1 (bible, shield with cross) and Zelda 2 (graves with crosses).

But then they all but dropped this starting with the third game, Triforce of Gods. Instead there was an emphasis on more Shinto-influenced stuff, like parallel worlds in Mt. Fuji, the three sacred treasures (the mirror, the sword and the pendant, I think?), and the whole reincarnation thing (Ganon, and rabbit Link). While there are priests (the one protecting Zelda, and Aghanim), the Catholic references are all but gone.
There's a six-branched star but it's more associated with occultism than anything religious, and it was changed to something else in all subsequent releases - even in Japan.

And then there's Din/Farore/Nayru and Hylia as well.

Someone in the comment section for Tomato's Legends of Localization website even mentioned the 3DS Alttp sequel had Japanese miko nuns and quite a lot of religious subtext written out of the English release. It's not Christian-influenced by any means.

If anything, I don't really think the "bible" or the graves were exactly essential to their vision more than just a random keyword for the "heroic fantasy"-lore feel - as opposed to later games in the series introducing religious lore of their own.

Trax

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2015, 10:13:08 pm »
There are two things to consider to make good looking text in Zelda 1. Line changes, and leading spaces (or left padding). Here's the byte format for the text:

..xx xxxx   Letter Code
.x.. ....   Start third line of text (after letter)
x... ....   Start second line of text (after letter)

Text ends when a byte has bits 6-7 set.


For example, if the last letter of the first line is K (normal code 0x14), then the code becomes 0x94 (bit 7 set). If K is the last letter of the second line of text, the code changes to 0x54 (bit 6 set). If you want the letter K to end the entire text sequence, the code becomes 0xD4 (bits 6-7 set). That's how line changes work...

The next thing is leading spaces. When any line of text does not start from the leftmost tile, it should be padded with the character 0x25. Character 0x24 is a normal space. The difference between 0x24 and 0x25 is that 0x24 is considered a character like any other, and a sound is heard when the letter is "typed" on screen. Character 0x25 simply advances one tile to the right without delay and no sound, which effectively makes the line start farther to the right without delay. You can use as many consecutive 0x25 characters as you want...

To think about it, leading space may not be the appropriate term for this. Nothing says you can't use character 0x25 in the middle of a sentence (this should be tested, though). It's just that the original game never does that...

KillerBob

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2015, 02:14:27 am »
Thanks, Trax. I'm familiar with how most of the text works in the game, all lines of dialog are already done except for Zelda's line in the ending which is handled a bit different.

The text "Thanks Link..." uses a different value for the last letter before the line break as to begin typing on the second line like every other dialog text in the game (despite typing it on the third line in this case) but after the last letter on the first line at $A96B is another value '64' which I haven't figured out the purpose of. I first thought this was due to the way the Japanese version treated the line breaks but that's not the case. The Japanese version just uses a different value for the last character. Would also like to expand this text but haven't been able to find the pointer for it yet. Any idea, Trax?

As for the cursor and palette mapping for the Save Option screen, I followed KingMike's advice but I have been unsuccessful in finding the code. Think I'll need to improve my ASM knowledge (which is only a bit above zero) before I can tackle those. Probably simple changes if you know what to look for but looking at the code in the debugger made my head hurt. :(

You can always make two versions of your hack, one with the "Bible" name and the other one with the "Book of Magic" name.
Didn't notice that you had edited your post... yes, I could do that. I was thinking of having the option between original and altered Zora sprite anyway.

EDIT: Well, I found out that if you just ignore the '64' hex value at the end of the first line, the text works like any other dialog in the game and begin typing on the second line. Now, I just need to find the pointer and what control its placement on screen.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2015, 03:01:44 am by KillerBob »

Midna

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2015, 04:21:58 pm »
Curious: Are you going to do anything about "Destroy the topmost boundary"? It's one of the few exceptions to the Japanese clues being less vague than the English ones. The best guess most people have is that it's talking about where to find the Red Ring...

KillerBob

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #13 on: July 20, 2015, 03:21:52 am »
Curious: Are you going to do anything about "Destroy the topmost boundary"? It's one of the few exceptions to the Japanese clues being less vague than the English ones. The best guess most people have is that it's talking about where to find the Red Ring...
I guess you meant to say the other way around as the English one that replaced it is pretty clear-cut "Patra has the map." But it's also a quite stupid replacement. I guess it can be nice to know that a Patra holds the map but like Mato said in his article, at this point in the game it’s common knowledge that major enemies sometimes drop key items. A hint that says that you should bomb the topmost wall on the map is by far more useful. IMO it's pretty clear it's a hint for the hidden room that holds the Red Ring. Various Japanese sites also agree and what else could it refer to? But I admit that the Japanese hint is vague and doesn't make full sense until you have found the map. Still, it's a valid question as you could treat a localization of this game in various different ways but my answer is that in this patch I restore the original Japanese hints.

Some would perhaps prefer a cleaned up script of the English original, a combination or maybe suggest you should not bother with it at all as it's one of the most played games ever. And after almost thirty years people knows this game inside and out anyway and the Engrish lines have become iconic and well liked, so what's the point? Well, whenever I return I see a still fantastic masterpiece of a game that is somewhat diminished by the poor presentation (Engrish). IMO it deserves better. Nintendo's own attempt back in 2003 was half-assed.

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2015, 04:27:33 pm »
No, I meant what I typed.

People who just want a cleaned-up version of the original English script are wearing nostalgia goggles, to be honest. The crummy translation has its charm, but even "destroy the topmost boundary" is easier to understand than stuff like "10th enemy has the bomb" (which replaced a hint that was actually useful).

Trax

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2015, 12:48:30 pm »
On the subject of translation, I can see two possibles avenues. Either your goal is to make a clear, direct translation from Japanese, without trying to change the meaning of the text. That, I would call a straight translation. Or, you want to modify the hints to make them look logical according to the game. In that case, you are doing more of an adaptation. I think both avenues are legitimate, as long as you keep it consistent throughout the game...

As for the technicality of Zelda's last lines of text, it is likely that the line change is simply hard-coded, since the text is a one-shot event. I've decoded quite a lot of the ROM, but I may be lacking in the ending scene department. I'll take a look and see what I can find...

As for the palette mappings of the Retry/Save/Continue screen, it may not be as trivial. I remember some time ago, someone was working on a Spanish translation of the game, and the Intro scrolling part had a similar problem with palettes, specifically the "All Treasures" line. As far as I can remember, the game simply changed a few bytes arbitrarily, and any further change had to be done through ASM...

Chpexo

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« Reply #16 on: July 26, 2015, 02:25:03 pm »
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« Last Edit: January 01, 2016, 07:58:47 am by Chpexo »

KillerBob

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #17 on: July 26, 2015, 05:16:56 pm »
No, I meant what I typed.

People who just want a cleaned-up version of the original English script are wearing nostalgia goggles, to be honest. The crummy translation has its charm, but even "destroy the topmost boundary" is easier to understand than stuff like "10th enemy has the bomb" (which replaced a hint that was actually useful).
Oh, sorry. I misunderstood you then. And yes, the hints are pretty straightforward in the Japanese original, at least on the first quest. There's one hint given in the second quest which I still don't understand the reasoning behind and its very odd placement within the game. Would be interesting to see what Japanese guidebooks said about it but very few covered the second quest.

The hint in question is: ミズウミノ キタ ニハ ヒミツガ アル "There's a secret north of a lake."
It was replaced in the NES version with "South of arrow mark hides a secret." which was a hint for finding Level 8. The only thing I can think of is that the Japanese line was meant as a hint for finding the Power Bracelet. There's only two lakes (if you count the smaller one west of the eastern forest) the other ones are fairy fountains.

The only problem with that is that the location of the item is the same in both quests. Why have a hint for it this late in the game? Sure, the Bracelet is an entirely optional item in the first quest (makes travel easier) but in the second quest it's an necessary item. But, the biggest problem with it is that the hint is encountered in Level 6 and you need the Bracelet to enter Level 4. So, I really don't know what to think of that hint. Haven't found anything on Japanese sites either. Still, I'll keep the original Japanese hint.

As for the technicality of Zelda's last lines of text, it is likely that the line change is simply hard-coded, since the text is a one-shot event. I've decoded quite a lot of the ROM, but I may be lacking in the ending scene department. I'll take a look and see what I can find...
Thanks, would be awesome if you could have a look. Probably a stupid thought but perhaps the 0x64 is a 0x24 space (bit 7set) if that's even possible? Well, I cannot make any sense of it. The value found at $A94B (A4) seems to control the horizontal position of the text, but it only affect the 1st line of the text. The following lines and credits were no problem for me but this one I haven't solved. Perhaps I'll need to move a big chunk of code in order to expand and get the line centered...

As for the palette mappings of the Retry/Save/Continue screen, it may not be as trivial. I remember some time ago, someone was working on a Spanish translation of the game, and the Intro scrolling part had a similar problem with palettes, specifically the "All Treasures" line. As far as I can remember, the game simply changed a few bytes arbitrarily, and any further change had to be done through ASM...
That's what scares me, the "Treasures" line gave me a huge headache, I had to move the whole intro part just in order to fix that single line of text. And only after looking at a document I found online.

By the way, have you ever considered renaming "elimination mode" to "delete file"? The first time I played the game I accidentally deleted my save file because I thought it would lead me to multiplayer elimination mode!  :laugh:
Ouch! :laugh:  No problem, I've left no text in the game untouched, it says Erase Data.


I also replaced the period in the Name Registration with a question mark (which has been touched up to match the rest of the English font better, the original was too thin) as there is two periods available in the character box when there's no need for it.

Trax

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2015, 05:58:19 pm »
Quote
Thanks, would be awesome if you could have a look. Probably a stupid thought but perhaps the 0x64 is a 0x24 space (bit 7set) if that's even possible? Well, I cannot make any sense of it. The value found at $A94B (A4) seems to control the horizontal position of the text, but it only affect the 1st line of the text. The following lines and credits were no problem for me but this one I haven't solved. Perhaps I'll need to move a big chunk of code in order to expand and get the line centered...

Well, KillerBob, your idea is not stupid at all. I checked the code for the ending, which starts straight from A900, bank 2. The text data for Zelda at the end follows the same rules as any text during the game. Last letter with bit 6, go to second line. Last letter with bit 7 set, go to third line. Bits 6-7 set, end of sequence. The only difference is that the lines have no space between them (in the US version). There's a table with 2 bytes at A992, which sets the offset (into the name table, most likely) for each new line, either 2nd or 3rd. Values are C4 and E4...

The 64 value is simply a Space character (24) with bit 6 set. So the second line is made of only a space character. Stupid like that...

If you take advantage of unused space (and there's a lot in Bank 2), you could add more text to that part. There's FC0 bytes of unused space starting from AF90. Finding a way to make text begin higher on screen would be nice as well...

KillerBob

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Re: The Legend of Zelda - relocalized (help needed)
« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2015, 11:50:20 am »
Thank you, Trax. You're awesome. :) Before having a look at my Save Screen issue again I was thinking about the minor bugs/glitches in the game... Not exactly a bug but I wanted to remove the secret staircases under the Armos statues outside Level 5 & 6 as they are clearly leftovers the developers forgot to remove, (the limitation of one entrance per screen forces them to be just a secondary entrance to the labyrinth, and if you exit the labyrinth after you have entered through the secondary entrance, the walking on stairs animation is absent like when you exit a secret staircase) they don't serve any purpose at all and might only confuse a first-time player. 

Anyway, is there a value that terminate them? The way I removed them was to place the secret entrance over the entrance to the labyrinth...

10CB2: 24 0B 1C 22 34 3D 4E   Screen
10CB9: E0 B0 B0 30 40 90 A0   Location of Secret

by changing the bolded values to 70, seems to work fine but I just wanted to be sure my approach doesn't cause any potential issues?

Also, is there a way to fix the "magically disappearing locked door" in Level 1?

A few notes from my last playthrough:

On the 1st Quest, no ghosts comes out of the grave where you get a Heart Container on the 2nd Quest. Similarly on the 2nd quest, no ghosts comes out of the grave where you get the Magical Sword in the 1st Quest. Might confuse a first-time player but is most likely a limitation of the two quest setup.

Objects that share the same palette and gets affected when Link's tunic changes color:

Sword
Boomerang
Bow and Arrows
Raft
Merchants and Zelda
Pols Voice

The heart cursor and the Magical Sword on the File Select Screens share palette (Makes the hilt on the sword white on the Erase Screen)

The game's prologue uses a different brighter palette for Link's skin color which in turn makes all those items that share palette with Link, looking a bit different compared to in-game as well. The reason for the difference is of course the palette used on the overworld - Link would blend with the background otherwise. However, I noticed that the game uses the prologue palette on Link inside Level-3 (1st Quest) and Level-2 (2nd Quest), which in turn makes the items and Pols Voice look different in the latter. Either they forgot to change the palette for these labyrinths or they kept it in order to not make Link blend with the background (sand in boss room). But that didn't stop them elsewhere, there's sand filled rooms in many other labyrinths.

A very minor difference in the Japanese re-release on cartridge is that it has smoother transitions when you enter or exit a cave compared to the FDS and NES versions where the hud (bottom of the subscreen) briefly blinks between transitions.

I don't think I will try to tackle any of these, just random observations of mine.

EDIT: On the 1st Quest you'll enter an unwinnable situation if you enter Ganon's chamber without Silver Arrows (and Rupees). In the 2nd Quest, besides Ganon's room, there's two rooms in Level 4 where you can get stuck if you're out of bombs. And if you do dungeons out of order there's a chance to get stuck in both Level 6 and 7. It's never a big deal as you can always bring up the Save Screen and choose continue to start from the entrance of the dungeon. Old and evil game design or simply developer oversights? Tough question. Ganon's room was clearly deliberate evil design. Those in Level 4 might be oversights but the other ones are hard to tell, I guess the labyrinths are numbered for a reason.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2015, 09:06:33 am by KillerBob »