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Author Topic: Final Fantasy IV Heroes of Light & Dark  (Read 6118 times)

linkncb16

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Final Fantasy IV Heroes of Light & Dark
« on: August 28, 2016, 12:00:47 pm »
-Introduction-
So I've started on a new long term project I'm calling Final Fantasy IV Heroes of Light & Dark and I was looking for some feedback. This hack is going to provide a completely new story with new characters, and will take place in an alternate universe of the FF IV world. The game alternates between 2 parties, one of light and one of darkness, which each are on a quest to save the Crystals and recover their lost friends. It is worth noting that this hack is meant to have a brutal difficulty that will provide a challenge even for veteran FF IV players. It would be greatly appreciated if you would check out the demo and let me know what you think of this idea! Thanks :)


-Story-
In a world where evil threatens the power of the Crystals once again, children from another land are summoned to rise against it. Confused as to what is happening before them, they soon learn of the ancient Mysidian prophecy which foretold their quest long ago. They then set out to find their lost allies and to save this new world they now call reality.

-Characters-

Coming Soon

-Screenshots-
« Last Edit: March 09, 2017, 06:54:26 pm by linkncb16 »
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2016, 12:51:31 pm »
Sounds like a fun idea, and I'm always excited to see stuff done with FFIV.

I assume you're using FF4kster for edits. Do you plan on sticking to what can be done with that, or will you be editing ASM a bit as well?

Will the characters eventually not look like Cecil, Rydia, et al?

Any idea about how long the eventual final product will be (as in, total gameplay time)?
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2016, 01:20:04 pm »
Sounds like a fun idea, and I'm always excited to see stuff done with FFIV.

I assume you're using FF4kster for edits. Do you plan on sticking to what can be done with that, or will you be editing ASM a bit as well?

Will the characters eventually not look like Cecil, Rydia, et al?

Any idea about how long the eventual final product will be (as in, total gameplay time)?
Yup. I'm using FF4kster (it's a lot of work by the way!). I don't trust my abilities outside of the editor so I won't be doing anything with ASM right now. I would really like to have custom sprites, but I don't think I'm skilled enough in pixel art to do it myself haha. As far as the final product goes, I'm hoping the it will be roughly how long the original is. Right now I'm trying to plan out a flow chart of the order of events, story elements, etc. And I am also trying to think about if there is anything outside of the limits for what I can do using the editor. I also cannot find the coordinates for the world map which is a bit problematic at the moment.
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2016, 02:29:22 pm »
Yeah, even with FF4kster, which might have ascended to the position of best game-specific editor out there, the process can be arduous.

For world map coordinates, I usually open up yousei's ff4ed:
http://www.romhacking.net/utilities/191/
It only works with a version 1.0 ROM (the version that ff4kster does not work with), so you'll have to get your hands on a copy of that, but the coordinates it shows you will be right.

If you haven't discovered the forum at slickproductions.org yet, I suggest you check it out. It's a great source of knowledge for the game, with a pretty active idea mill. Problem is, it's down currently, but one of the Adkins is working on getting it back up and running. Most of what's been contributed there has been archived here:
http://web.archive.org/web/20160331080848/http://slickproductions.org/forum/index.php?PHPSESSID=ojue37569m6sr9lof35n4khes5&board=13.0

I've got quite a bit of experience with FFIV - working on a full hack myself - so if you have any questions, feel free to ask.
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2016, 02:51:01 pm »
Thanks for your help! I've checked out your project as well and to be honest it looks so good I'm actually jealous! I'm curious, how did you implement custom graphics / make sprite modifications? Also do you know how to make names and job classes longer than 6 characters? Oh and for whatever reason when I add/remove a character from the party during a cutscene then bring up the naming screen the sprites disappear until the dialogue is finished. Any remedy for that?
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2016, 05:42:57 pm »
Don't be jealous - I've been working on it since 2012, and I still have a lot of work to do on it.
 ;)

For sprite modifications, I use Tile Layer, but I know Bahamut ZERO, who also works on FFIV and does more sprite editing than I do, uses YY-CHR. Regardless of which program you use, you need to know where in the ROM the graphics are stored, and what "mode" they're encoded in. Most FFIV graphics are in SNES 3BPP format, but battle character sprites are in SNES 4BPP. As for where they are. I don't have that written down. I usually just go to a page on slickproductions.org that I have bookmarked, but that won't work right now. Best I can tell you is to open the ROM in one of those editors and scroll down almost to the end. That's where most of the graphics are. When you see stuff that looks familiar, there you are.
Regarding the last question - which sprites are disappearing? And when? Even without knowing the answer to those questions, my suggestion would be to insert a "Pause 1 cycle" either after the add/remove character, or just before the dialogue appears. Sometimes the graphics take a quick moment to "catch up" to everything else, and a 1 cycle pause (which is almost indistinguishable to us) gives them the time they need.
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2016, 07:50:36 pm »
So I'm having this weird glitch with Adult Rydia where adding her to the party makes her level 0 with 0 HP/MP... Any idea what that's about?
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2016, 08:08:33 pm »
Yeah - adult rydia loads with child rydia's stored stats. So if you've never added AND removed child rydia from your party, then adult rydia won't load right. If you want to jump right to adult, just make the event do the following:
Add Child Rydia
Remove Child Rydia
Add Adult Rydia

The player will never notice the first two instructions executing, but they will enable Adult Rydia to enter as a fully valid character.
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2016, 08:42:53 pm »
Wow it works great now! Thanks for your help! Still can't get that editor to work for some reason though. I've tried versions 1.0 and 1.1, but neither will work so I'm a bit stuck on coordinates right now.
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2016, 09:23:13 pm »
Oh, FF4ed also requires the ROM to have a header. Do you know how to check for that?
Simple method: Check the file info in Windows. If it's 1025 KB, then the ROM has a header. If it's 1024 KB, then it has no header, and you'll have to add one.
There are a bunch of programs that can do that, I think, but I use this one:
http://www.romhacking.net/utilities/18/
When it asks if it's a HiROM file, say no.
When it asks if you want to disable static RAM, say no.
That'll do it.
If the header is not the issue, then can you give me a little more detail about what's happening when you try to run the program?
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2016, 10:31:55 pm »
Works perfectly now! As far as sprite editing goes, I think I could do it, but only if I could see the correct colors in the sprite editor and I don't know if you can do that. I'm using yychr.
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2016, 12:38:00 am »
I don't use YY-CHR, but the palettes must work pretty much the same. First, set the first color to white, or gray, or some other mute color. The first color is never used. That's the "invisible" color. The second color should be black. That's always the outline color. Once you do that you should be able to see the sprites for what they are. From theatre, I usually just eyeball the rest of the colors to something close enough. There are more exact and scientific ways to do it, but they're also considerably more complicated and time-consuming.

I almost forgot, BTW, that you asked about expanding class names. You can, in fact, expand them by one character. Doing so requires resizing all of the windows that the class name shows up in, too, so that the word doesn't bleed through the window frame. I worked on compiling all of the necessary steps to do that for Project II and Namingway Edition (two ffiv localizations), but I don't have it all written down in one place. If you search for the Project II thread in this board, it's all there somewhere. I think it was sometime in early to mid 2015... it's late now, but maybe sometime I'll see about digging all that info up. I should note that doing that will mess up the way all those class names (as well as command names, which come right after in the ROM and need to be shifted) look in FF4kster, because the editor doesn't know to look for those changes.
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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #12 on: August 29, 2016, 08:34:40 am »
Is http://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php/topic,17302.0.html the thread where the information is? Also does it apply to class,character,command, and spell names? Another thing I'd like to do is give Edge more Ninjutsu but it doesn't look like there is anymore room...

Today I'm going to see if I can figure out how to change GP to Gil. I'm also going to try to edit sprites so I can get some FF5 sprites in the game as well as trying to edit the title screen if possible. Oh and I'll be trying to figure out how events and triggers work...

August 29, 2016, 09:00:41 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
And one other thing, how do you add a B button dash?
« Last Edit: August 29, 2016, 09:00:41 am by linkncb16 »
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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2016, 10:19:08 am »
Yeah, that's the thread. Jump to page 24. Find my post from February 13 that starts with "Well, folks, bad news/good news..." That's the beginning of the pertinent info, but after that post, I discovered other things that need to be changed to make it all work, so read all the way through to the stuff that I posted on page 27 of the thread. At some point I may compile all of that ino into one pace, but I tend to keep a lot of balls in the air between ROM hacking and real life, so I don't think I have the time at the moment...
Also, that only applies to expanding class names. character names, command names and spell names (and you didn't ask, but item names, too) are all pretty fixed at their current lengths for various reasons.
Another thing I'd like to do is give Edge more Ninjutsu but it doesn't look like there is anymore room...
... Sorta right. FF4kster does allow you to extend the list of six-letter spells, essentially increasing the amound of spells that can be added to character spell sets without messing the names up. But you won't be able to have characters learn those spells (the ones beyond the last Ninja spell) by levelling up. You can add them via event instructions, though (which is how Edge learns Flood and Blitz in the original game, anyway, so you could make it work, for sure).

Quote
Today I'm going to see if I can figure out how to change GP to Gil.
Certainly do-able. I think Rodimus Primal did it in Namingway Edition. The best method would be to create a "squish tile" for "il" (a single tile that combines the letters "i" and "l," which are narrow enough to fit fully in a single tile), because then you souldn't have to worry about requiring extra space in all of the places "GP" shows up. It might be a bit difficult finding all of the instances of "GP" in the ROM, though. Have you ever edited text in a ROM using a hex editor? A project like this one would certainly be considered possible for a beginner, but requires a bit of learning and is slightly more difficult than opening FF4kster and making changes.
Quote
I'm also going to try to edit sprites so I can get some FF5 sprites in the game
If you're talking about battle sprites, that's certainly possible, though it's painstaking because of the amount of tiles used for each character in battle, and the fact that their arrangement can be a bit confusing at times. It would be a good way to teach yourself about sprite editing, though, so it's probably a good thing to try.
As for "map character" sprites, you won't be able to just copy and paste them from V into IV, because in V they're 4BPP but in IV they're 3BPP (esentially, they use 16 colors in V but only 8 in IV), so you'll essentially have to re-draw them into IV while using V as a guide only. Same story for most monster sprites. Monsters in IV (the one exception being Zeromus's final form) are 3BPP, but most monsters in V are 4BPP (there are a few that are 3BPP in V, but I'm not exactly sure which ones. Bahamut ZERO could probably tell you, he's the person who told me that).
Quote
as well as trying to edit the title screen if possible.
Not recommended for a beginning project. Get a little more graphics editing under your belt first. You'll be able to find the title screen graphics pretty easily in a graphics editing program, but beyond editing the existing tiles while having them stay in the same place when the game runs, making significant changes is (at least) an intermediate-level task. It is possible, mind you... see the "Final Fantasy IV" title screen used in Project II for what I would consider an intermediate-level edit, or the "animated" title screens I designed for my project and for Namingway Edition for examples of some more advanced edits. What makes things more difficult is when, in addition to editing tiles, you edit tile arrangements, that is, the order in which the tiles show up (left to right, top to bottom) on the screen. So anyway, my recommendation would be to at least get comfortable with character sprite editing first before tackling something like the title screen.
Quote
Oh and I'll be trying to figure out how events and triggers work...
That should be considerably easier than everything mentioned above, because FF4kster completely facilitates the process for you.
Quote
And one other thing, how do you add a B button dash?
;D
This is a topic I've delved into ad nauseam. A (seemingly) standard B-button dash is pretty much impossible in FFIV, or at least making it happen is well beyond my capabilities.
the good news I have for you on this front is that I have published a patch called FFIV User Options, which includes the following:
*Active/Wait battle mode select in the options menu
*Turn Deferment with the X-button in battle
*Toggling between Max HP and ATB Meter by pressing Select in battle
*Toggling normal walking speed and Dash walking speed by pressing the L-button (the readme file contains intructions on how to switch it to B if you prefer, but it must be a toggle - no "hold to dash, release to walk")

August 29, 2016, 11:39:51 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
It looks like slickproductions.org is back online now.
I recommend creating a forum account there and starting a thread about your project there as well. We're a small community compared to this one, but you'll be able to connect directly with more folks who are specifically interested in hacking ffiv.
 :thumbsup:
« Last Edit: August 29, 2016, 11:39:51 am by chillyfeez »
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2016, 06:51:30 pm »
Thank you so much for all your help so far! I do have a few more questions though if that's alright.
1.How would one increase the number of six letter spells?
2.I'm very familiar with editing hex as I have worked a lot with FF III (NES). So give me instruction and I can make it happen :)
3.No luck on sprites/ title screen. Messed around with palettes but couldn't get it to work. What sprite editor do you use?
4.Will your patch with for my hack without messing anything up?
5.Is there any way to setup custom equip indexes for weapons/armor?

And by the way I've been playing around with your hack demo. It's really great so far :) I can tell you've put a lot of time into it!

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chillyfeez

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #15 on: August 29, 2016, 10:50:42 pm »
1. It's either in the Features editor or in the Spell Sets editor in FF4kster. I don't remember which, but if it's not one, then it's the other.
2. I'll come back to this one...
3. I use Tile Layer Pro. Bear in mind, though, no matter which program you use, the graphics won't look like much because the tiles will be laid out linearly, or in the case of battle sprites, completely mixed up. Now that slick is back up, though, I can link you to this thread. Phoenix provided the location of all of the character sprites there, so now you know where to look.
4. Yup!
5. Yeah, in FF4kster, when you're selecting an equip index, hit Tab. The finger will move to the character list, and you can hit enter to turn on or off any character on the list. Bear in mind that you're editing the index, though, so any other equipment that uses that same index will also be affected.
2 revisited: first thing you'll have to do is find the font in your graphics editor. Switch the editor graphics mode to "game boy." Then scroll down slowly until you see all the letters and numbers and whatnot. You'll see a bunch of empty tiles. Pick one and make a squish tile "il." Save changes.
Next, open your ROM in a hex editor, one that allows loading tables. You'll need to make a ffiv font table. You can use this as a reference. It'll get a bit dicey from here. You're gonna want to do a text search for "GP," but because it's just two bytes, there will be some instances that are not relevant. Look for the ones that seem to be surrounded by other stuff that is definitely text. Back up your ROM before saving, just to be on the safe side. When you think you've found a relevant "GP," switch the "P" with whatever value represents your "il."
Hopefully that makes sense...
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

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linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #16 on: August 31, 2016, 07:23:55 pm »
The first alpha release of the project is out now! Everything you see in the video is what has been completed thus far. I will try to have an update out every Friday so expect more to come soon!

Footage #1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9Jlpl2nHFw

Download link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/27onrh0u5mn87iu/Final%20Fantasy%20IV%20Redacted%20%5B0.1.1%5D.zip?dl=0
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bleedingapathy

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2016, 04:50:35 am »
one major gripe I have with the game so far is ryda gets one shotted alot -.-

linkncb16

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2016, 06:02:21 am »
one major gripe I have with the game so far is ryda gets one shotted alot -.-
Front or back row? And there is armor for her in Mysidia. : )
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bleedingapathy

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Re: Final Fantasy IV A New Beginning
« Reply #19 on: September 03, 2016, 06:23:22 am »
back row with a leather helm and her toilet paper armor. at level 5 she can still get on shotted. she should at least start with some armor on instead of just cloth armor nothing else -.-