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Author Topic: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project  (Read 246559 times)

PunkFrog

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #140 on: January 17, 2017, 08:42:57 pm »
I'm talking about flashcards. Flashcard is a special cartridge where you put the game in an SD card, for example. This way you can play in the real console.

SNES consoles (as in, the one I still have in my room dating back to 1993) could play these flashcards?

Again, sorry if my questions sound dumb. :(

mz

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #141 on: January 17, 2017, 08:59:37 pm »
That's exactly what they were made for...
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DougRPG

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #142 on: January 17, 2017, 09:01:25 pm »
I don't believe it is necessary. I proposed a mapping that would be compatible with the original cart, as well as already work with existing emulators back in 2012. But, byuu shot it down and insisted on doing things the BSNES locked-in way instead on grounds of needing more space for some super secret translation feature that never took place.

As it stands now, no flash carts, or emulators will play this. Only BSNES/higan (and probably only certain versions that are compatible with that particular version of the manifest file).  :'(

Hi Nightcrawler... I understand your concern but Tom gives the shots here, not Byuu.

Byuu and LostTemplar did the right thing about the expansion. There is no secret here. The game only has 1MB of "cpu rom" so it was expanded to 2MB, and in the right way.
We can expand the SPC7110 data block too, and there is only one way to do that. And the expansion was needed because the new script size.

And there is no such thing like "BSNES locked-in way". Bsnes is the emulator that gives you the most freedom among all Snes emulators. The philosophy is just contrary to "lock-in" implementation. This manifest feature is amazing because gives you complete control over the Snes memory map. You can do whatever you want.

People complains about the folder method used by Bsnes/Higan, but this is another amazing feature after you look at it. It's even better for debugging. I use the v086 debugger and this folder stuff is just amazing. All debugging files are completely organized and keep saved among debugging sessions. Far ahead other debuggers.
And it's all open source, with very good code. So you can add any features you want easilly just implementing directly in the code. I did a lot of modifications and added some new features in the debugger while working in Feoez.

Bsnes/Higan doesn't have a lot of features like other emulators, like video recorder, video filters, etc, but for debugging, testing, etc, it's the best choice (to me).

I'm not advocating in Byuu's favor, but I think I got used to how Bsnes works. Today I think it's impossible to me to work with Geiger again. But it's only me, other people may think Bsnes is shitty. No problem with that.

Quote
As it stands now, no flash carts, or emulators will play this. Only BSNES/higan (and probably only certain versions that are compatible with that particular version of the manifest file).

Yes, but the problem here is the SPC7110. The expansion is very simple, like the expansion of any other game, but because we have the SPC7110 the emulators will need some patch. Snes9x for example checks for the SPC7110 and uses a custom map if it's found, so we don't have control to make it to work, so we need to release a new version.

If you have another method to map new space please let us know. But I think the game is already expanded in the right way, but who knows? But only using the original size is out of question, because the translation really needs extra space.
I think the most important thing for a translation is to be 100% compatible with the real hardware, and currently the game is. If it needs to change a lot of software to be able to play this translation, so be it, because it's a price to pay to play the game in english.

Like I said if you have suggestions please let us know. I think we are all willing to receive suggestions and implement it if it's worth of it. I think Tom's intention is to release the best translation possible. Like I said Tom gives the shots here (not Byuu) and he is very open to suggestions.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2017, 09:21:20 pm by DougRPG »

PunkFrog

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #143 on: January 17, 2017, 10:06:59 pm »
That's exactly what they were made for...

I'm guessing this is a response to me?

I can't tell.

KingMike

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #144 on: January 17, 2017, 10:37:01 pm »
I don't believe it is necessary. I proposed a mapping that would be compatible with the original cart, as well as already work with existing emulators back in 2012. But, byuu shot it down and insisted on doing things the BSNES locked-in way instead on grounds of needing more space for some super secret translation feature that never took place.
I assumed his "super secret" was using pre-rendering the VWF item names, etc. as graphics instead of rendering them at runtime.
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DougRPG

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #145 on: January 17, 2017, 10:55:01 pm »
I assumed his "super secret" was using pre-rendering the VWF item names, etc. as graphics instead of rendering them at runtime.

It's not a secret. He even released an article talking about this:

https://web.archive.org/web/20130121234738/http://byuu.org/articles/hacking/proportional-fonts

Edit: Ah, sorry, it's not about Vwf. But good reading anyways  :happy:

Merr Man

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #146 on: January 17, 2017, 11:33:52 pm »
To Tom,

OK, I figured that out about Apocalypse, considering it spoofs the US. Just read about Fuun Kabukiden, so I wonder what they do with England in that game. Interesting.

The way you describe Zero's playstyle and ranking on your list....it makes a lot of sense that you're working on this one. I've even read somebody say, sometime ago, that they actually liked Zero over FFVI which boggles the mind, and FFVI is no.2 or 3 in my favorite games of all time! And more Apocalypse hype! I can't wait to play these games for the very first time, though I do wonder which version of Manjimaru may get fan translated down the line....ponderances, what ponderances.

Being always interested in traditionalist JRPGs, especially for the Super Famicom/SNES, I don't mind not reinventing the wheel.

In closing, so that I don't derail this thread, I've always found it interesting the projects that you all pick out. It's not always what is "popular" or what is "cool" but really is more like "you've got to play this!" which is awesome! Even if it doesn't become a huge thing, if I talk to anyone about video games, this game may come up in some way, shape or form and it may lead a few people to try it out.

Anyways, I feel like I have many more questions, but I don't want to interfere with your work, and I am grateful that you've responded to me.


Tom

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #147 on: January 18, 2017, 03:49:46 am »
I was a little sad to find this out, but Apocalypse is not all that popular in Japan. A lot of people in Japan complain that the heroine is too plain-looking, and the battle system is boring, and it's not like the classic Tengai series games, and all of that.

I read a Japanese review that said something about Zero that stayed with me... It said, "You'll enjoy the whole experience, but when you sit back and ask yourself, 'What made this game so good?' you'll be unable to say why."

I can't really say why Zero's a great game. Certainly, it has unique things about it, like the real time clock and such, but those things aren't WHY the game is great. In the end, I think the world is just really unique and charming. That's the closest I can come to an answer.

Will people like it more than FF6? That's a matter of tastes. Maybe people who are into stats, leveling, equipment and such will like FF6 more since the battles are more involved. In comparison, you can pretty easily turn off your brain in Zero. There's even a very effective "strategy" system where you can set four customizable auto-battle strategies and easily swap between them in battle, letting you win most battles pushing a button only a couple of times.

Of course, if you don't play RPGs for the battle system, but rather the story and world, it's perfectly okay to prefer Zero. As much praise as Kefka gets, I found him to lack any real motivation as a villain. He had personality in spades, but in the end, they just passed his evilness off as "he just went crazy," which feels a little lazy to me. Zero's villains, with maybe the exception of the first boss, are relatively complex. There's often a level of sympathy and depth given to them.

When it comes to Manjimaru, there's only one answer as to which version should be translated. The PC Engine original. It's the only uncensored release. Even the PC Engine PSN port was censored. They rendered the Kinu's rage scene nearly nonsensical, when it used to be shocking. It is relatively tame in every re-release.

Whatever questions you have, feel free to ask. I'm making progress with the game every day, regardless of these posts. They're not taking time away from the game.

mziab

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #148 on: January 18, 2017, 04:11:40 am »
Really psyched to see this project alive and kicking again! I've been interested in playing this title since the initial emulation using the graphics packs was implemented, so basically for the last... 16 years. A lot has changed since then, but I'm still looking forward to playing this gem. This and G.O.D. are probably the last two SNES rpgs that have me genuinely intrigued and wanting to play them. Keep up the good work, everyone!

SNES consoles (as in, the one I still have in my room dating back to 1993) could play these flashcards?

Again, sorry if my questions sound dumb. :(

A flashcard is essentially a special cartridge which enables you to play roms from a memory card on a real console. As far as the console is concerned, it's just another game, so no extra support is needed from the original hardware. You just need to put your roms on an SD card, insert it into the flashcard, then use that with your console. With most games it's as simple as that.

That being said, Tengai Makyou Zero is a special case. The translation uses a special memory map, which won't be supported out-of-the-box. However, a bigger issue is that the original cartridge had a special chip called the SPC7110, used for decompressing in-game graphics and the real-time clock. Most flashcards simply don't have the means to support it. Just about the only one that could support it is the sd2snes, according to an earlier post. However, the support isn't there yet. Another option would be to replace the memory chip on the original cartridge and do some rewiring for the expansion to work. However, this would require destroying an original Tengai Makyou Zero cart and those aren't exactly cheap or easy to come by.

PunkFrog

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #149 on: January 18, 2017, 05:54:14 am »
A flashcard is essentially a special cartridge which enables you to play roms from a memory card on a real console. As far as the console is concerned, it's just another game, so no extra support is needed from the original hardware. You just need to put your roms on an SD card, insert it into the flashcard, then use that with your console. With most games it's as simple as that.

That being said, Tengai Makyou Zero is a special case. The translation uses a special memory map, which won't be supported out-of-the-box. However, a bigger issue is that the original cartridge had a special chip called the SPC7110, used for decompressing in-game graphics and the real-time clock. Most flashcards simply don't have the means to support it. Just about the only one that could support it is the sd2snes, according to an earlier post. However, the support isn't there yet. Another option would be to replace the memory chip on the original cartridge and do some rewiring for the expansion to work. However, this would require destroying an original Tengai Makyou Zero cart and those aren't exactly cheap or easy to come by.

That deflates my hopes somewhat.

What are the chances that this will eventually work on a reproduction cart?

mziab

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #150 on: January 18, 2017, 07:19:25 am »
As you can read in the old post I've linked to, a repro cart is feasible. It's just it might be a bit hard to find donor carts due to the special chip inside. Maybe someone will do it or maybe sd2snes will receive SPC7110 support once the translation is released. You'll just have to wait and see. Playing using emulation seems like the only feasible choice in the short term.

ginbunbun

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #151 on: January 18, 2017, 09:29:44 am »
As you can read in the old post I've linked to, a repro cart is feasible. It's just it might be a bit hard to find donor carts due to the special chip inside. Maybe someone will do it or maybe sd2snes will receive SPC7110 support once the translation is released. You'll just have to wait and see. Playing using emulation seems like the only feasible choice in the short term.
I have asked Ikari the person who makes the firmware for the SD2SNES about this game if it will be supported. Funny enough the real time clock the sd2snes uses is based on the code for the spc7110. So yeah support for this game on sd2snes is pretty much guaranteed.

mziab

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #152 on: January 18, 2017, 09:47:11 am »
I have asked Ikari the person who makes the firmware for the SD2SNES about this game if it will be supported. Funny enough the real time clock the sd2snes uses is based on the code for the spc7110. So yeah support for this game on sd2snes is pretty much guaranteed.

Good to know. However, the real-time clock is only one part of the puzzle. The decompression feature of the SPC7110 is the other crucial part. Since the inner workings of the chip are pretty well documented, it all boils down to whether the FPGA can handle it.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2017, 11:51:29 am by mziab »

PunkFrog

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #153 on: January 18, 2017, 11:38:44 am »
I hope we can play it on regular repro carts too, since SD2SNES is way out of my price range at the moment.

Although maybe that will change by the time the translation is done. :D

Cargodin

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #154 on: January 18, 2017, 05:55:07 pm »
I was a little sad to find this out, but Apocalypse is not all that popular in Japan. A lot of people in Japan complain that the heroine is too plain-looking, and the battle system is boring, and it's not like the classic Tengai series games, and all of that.

[...]

When it comes to Manjimaru, there's only one answer as to which version should be translated. The PC Engine original. It's the only uncensored release.

I was surprised by the lukewarm reaction to Apocalypse as well. Im speaking out of my ass here, but I think when looking at how America is poked at and interpreted, I think it simply clicks better with Western fans because of that curiosity and that pre-established connection with the locale. Its an exotic enough setting for Japanese fans I bet like World Masterpiece Theater stuff is, but they probably cling more to the ol' Umashikanojo jokes and ehat theyre familiar with too. In a way I think thats why Zengo is by far the most developed character in the game than any other character.

I do gotta disagree with the pc engine being the only reasonable port. I agree that censorship is a nono, but the NDS version is the most playable option as it comes with all the subtitles during the cutscenes which to my knowledge no other available version has. Uncensoring it might be a stretch given how the port was made, but even as a tool for comparison I think its a viable option.

Merr Man

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #155 on: January 18, 2017, 06:18:58 pm »
Tom,

I think that in this post-Earthbound phase, I wouldn't be surprised if an available version of "Apocalypse" in English actually can get a greater cult following in the west. It's so uncommon, though not rare, to play a game that has such a strange sense of humor, and may actually make me chuckle at moments, which is maybe why Vic Ireland was interested in the game.

OK, thank you for the response. Does P.H. Chada ever appear in the series, or is referenced to like peeling back an imaginary fourth wall? Also how would you rate Kabuki as a hero? He's one of the most present characters in the series, right?

Sometimes, I like just jumping into a RPG, especially if I'm in the middle of it and it's not story heavy, and just grinding through battles over and over while something else is playing in the background, it's like a task that requires you to lose your brain as you escape. Nice to also hear about the villains, I loved Kefka and Luca Blight but just because someone has more character doesn't make them bad, so I'll be looking forward to them.

Personally, I'd prefer the DS version as it would be the easiest to play with a fan translation, if the quality is still high, than I would vouch for that one.

Nightcrawler

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #156 on: January 18, 2017, 06:46:50 pm »
But in any case, it's not true that no other emulators will be able to play it. DougRPG just showed the translation working on SNES9X with modification already. It would probably just take one small update to the official release.

There was about 4 years between the latest release of SNES9x (1.54) and the previous release, (1.53), and about 2 years between 1.53 and 1.52. Even if you somehow succeed with a timely SNES9x official release, that's still just 2 emulators and a single flavor nonetheless (there are many versions of SNES9x). Knowing this, I would have done it in a compatible manner so it works with the existing emulators. I like to reach as wide an audience as possible, and give people options with my releases. That's just me I guess. *shrug*


Byuu and LostTemplar did the right thing about the expansion. There is no secret here. The game only has 1MB of "cpu rom" so it was expanded to 2MB, and in the right way.
We can expand the SPC7110 data block too, and there is only one way to do that. And the expansion was needed because the new script size.

The existing mapping already allows for a meg expansion (half is accessible) that also works on the original cart and SNES9x already. It probably works on other emulators too, but I don't have notes on that.  Do it however you'd like. No skin off my back. It's just a shame to have no way to run on real hardware nor run on any other official emulators when not necessary. So, I figured I'd offer another option.

Quote
Yes, but the problem here is the SPC7110. The expansion is very simple, like the expansion of any other game, but because we have the SPC7110 the emulators will need some patch. Snes9x for example checks for the SPC7110 and uses a custom map if it's found, so we don't have control to make it to work, so we need to release a new version.

As mentioned, the existing SNES9x already maps the additional free space that is also compatible with the real cart adding two wires. 90-9f:8000-FFFF.

I have asked Ikari the person who makes the firmware for the SD2SNES about this game if it will be supported. Funny enough the real time clock the sd2snes uses is based on the code for the spc7110. So yeah support for this game on sd2snes is pretty much guaranteed.

While Ikari did a great thing with designing the SD2SNES, unfortunately he has not been able to add any new special chip support in the past several years. SuperFX for instance has been in progress for years now. I don't see adding the SPC7110 decompression engine in the foreseeable future. Hopefully I'm wrong though.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2017, 07:01:48 pm by Nightcrawler »
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Cargodin

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #157 on: January 18, 2017, 08:28:45 pm »
Vic Ireland

Between the hamfisted Bill Clinton jokes and randomly farting NPCs present in the game, he would have his work cut out for him.

DougRPG

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #158 on: January 18, 2017, 08:32:09 pm »
Quote
The existing mapping already allows for a meg expansion (half is accessible) that also works on the original cart and SNES9x already. It probably works on other emulators too, but I don't have notes on that.  Do it however you'd like. No skin off my back. It's just a shame to have no way to run on real hardware nor run on any other official emulators when not necessary. So, I figured I'd offer another option.

Nightcrawaler, could you check that again? I think you are mistaken, but you could please tell what this "meg expansion" in Snes9x is? The game maps the 1M cpu data to c0-cf. At d0-ff we have the SPC7110 rom data mapped, so we cannot use an extra MB there. 50-5f is used by the SPC7110, so we cannot use that too.
We have 11.9MB to use in the Snes memory map, and the games already uses 5MB (c0-cf, d0-ff and 50-5f). So we still have 6,9MB to use: 00h-3Fh:8000h-FFFFh (2MB), 40h-4Fh:0000h-FFFFh (1MB), 60h-7Dh:0000h-FFFFh (1,9MB) and 80h-BFh:8000h-FFFFh (2MB).
So what region Snes9x is using for this extra MB?

I read Snes9x code and seems that it's only using the c0-cf region for the cpu rom:

Code: [Select]
void CMemory::Map_SPC7110HiROMMap (void)
{
printf("Map_SPC7110HiROMMap\n");
map_System();

map_index(0x00, 0x00, 0x6000, 0x7fff, MAP_HIROM_SRAM, MAP_TYPE_RAM);
map_hirom(0x00, 0x0f, 0x8000, 0xffff, CalculatedSize);
map_index(0x30, 0x30, 0x6000, 0x7fff, MAP_HIROM_SRAM, MAP_TYPE_RAM);
map_index(0x50, 0x50, 0x0000, 0xffff, MAP_SPC7110_DRAM, MAP_TYPE_ROM);
map_hirom(0x80, 0x8f, 0x8000, 0xffff, CalculatedSize);
map_hirom_offset(0xc0, 0xcf, 0x0000, 0xffff, CalculatedSize, 0);
map_index(0xd0, 0xff, 0x0000, 0xffff, MAP_SPC7110_ROM,  MAP_TYPE_ROM);

map_WRAM();

map_WriteProtectROM();
}

Are you talking about these 00h-0fh:8000h-FFFFh and 80h-8fh:8000h-FFFFh?
I think it's not doing what you are saying. It's only mapping the first 512KB to 00-0f and 80-8f.

By the way, you only need to add one line in this function to make this translation to work.

Quote
It's just a shame to have no way to run on real hardware nor run on any other official emulators when not necessary. So, I figured I'd offer another option.

Again, I said several times that the translation is 100% compatible with the real hardware. So you can play in any emulatior (adding the cartridge mapping), any flashcard compatible with Feoez (and the new cartridge mapping) and even do a repro cart, like LostTemplar said in the post linked by Mziab.

Expanding a rom doesn't make a game incompatible with real hardware. You can expand a Snes cart to 1TB if you want, assuming the cartridge has the correct mapping hardware, and it still will be 100% compatible with console hardware.

Cartridge hardware and console hardware are two separate things. You can do whatever you want in the cartridge hardware, like Nintendo did several times, with several enhanced chips.
What makes a game not compatible with hardware is something that the console hardware doesn't support, like a Super Mario Hack trying to write to Vram outside the Vblank. It's only work in Zsnes because it's not emulation the console hardware correctly.




Tom

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Re: Tengai Makyou Zero translation project
« Reply #159 on: January 18, 2017, 08:55:41 pm »
When it comes to DS/GC/PS2/PSN ports of Manjimaru, I can't approve of the censored versions at all. Certainly subtitles can be hacked into the PC Engine release? The smart thing to do would be to extract the subs from the DS release, translate those, and then have the hacker add them to the uncensored PC Engine release.

Regarding the "easiest to play" comment, I have to disagree there as well. Playing a patched rom of a DS game requires either a flashcart or a VERY powerful computer for DS emulation, and I have neither of those.

The PC Engine release, on the other hand, can very easily be patched into the Tengai Makyou Collection PSP release (actually, ANY PC Engine game can). PSP emulation runs at much lower specs than the DS , and it's easier to play on a real PSP - you don't even need a flashcart. More people will be able to play it that way... And they'd be playing the uncensored version!

(In fact, my goal is to translate all of the Tengai Makyou PC Engine releases and put them into the PSP Collection for the ultimate Tengai Makyou experience!)

Merr Man: P.H. Chada only appears in the manuals of the games. He appears in every manual, and even has a guest comment in the Saturn manual for Apocalypse saying that he's happy to see a Japanese interpretation of America, his own country. (I believe that the PSP manual for Apocalypse doesn't feature any comments from him, but I'd have to go through my closet to check on that.)

As a hero, Kabuki is very memorable, but he's also selfish and a little stupid. He's not entirely reliable, and seems more interested in living it up with the ladies. I think that's why people love him so much. (That and his cool hair.)