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Author Topic: [Technical, debugging][PS2]Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne - Hardtype  (Read 307 times)

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This ad is in reference to this hack https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/3299/

Ever since it's release in 2017, there has been a Game Breaking bug which exclusively effected those of us playing on Original Ps2 Hardware, that being the game crashes upon the start of the Enemy's Turn in battles; While I circumvented this issue by playing on my Hacked Ps4, this is not a viable solution for most players, and it's always been a shame for such a well made romhack to not be enjoyed by as many players as possible, Thus I have set out to pinpoint the cause of this Game Breaking bug to rectify this dilemma once and for all.

It is my hope that whomever takes on this ad will be able to run the PCSX2 Debugger (My Computer is too weak) to at the very least pinpoint the issue so that either Zombero (The Creator of this hack)can handle the fix with minimal headache, or perhaps we can make the fix ourselves to so this hack can get the further recognition it deserves =).

Without further ado, here are the materials I will be referencing,

1. The original .Pnach file for this patch (not needed for this ad, but would be useful to refer to)
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1tDW4QFJEmy0lK3AsvHpU28GuNaLOopAi/view

To confirm the above link is genuine, you can get it on this reddit thread from the user who made the aforementioned .Pnach file, the link above will be found under "Download pnach file for Maniax edition"

https://www.reddit.com/r/Megaten/comments/cc6bjo/shin_megami_tensei_nocturne_hardtpe_pnach_file/

2. My altered copy of the .Pnach file which contains the relevant lines only)
https://pastebin.com/X3VFZTY8


I confirmed that whatever is causing this problem appears to be isolated within lines 4-2086 of my Pastebin link ( 66-2148 of the pnach file); I base my assertion on the fact that when I removed those lines from the original .pnach file, the game was finally playable (As far as I could tell), random battles no longer crashed the game when running on Actual Ps2 Hardware and even New Skills were retained!

However, when I tried to apply only lines 66-2148 of the Original .Pnach file to a fresh copy of the game, it did not appear to have any obvious changes to the game although battles continued to crash upon enemy turn. Diving deeper, when I split these lines into two .Pnach files, the 1st half (Lines 4-1066 of my pastebin link OR Lines 66-1128 of the .PNACH file) was completely unplayable (upon loading a save the system crashed consistently after multiple attempts); The second half (Lines 1067-2086 of my Pastebin link OR lines 1129-2148 of the .PNACH file) on the other hand appeared to load normally but would crash upon enemies turn!


Lastly, here are some final observations I made which might help our debugging efforts even further. When I used the debug menu (Gameshark Code) to change enemy demons into unique Bosses such as Lucifer, the game did not crash upon the enemy turn, yet when I reverted the changes it would crash upon their turn. I took this a step further and tried changing enemy demons into boss variants of demons (Surt, Thor, Black Frost, Forneus etc), and was pleased to discover their turns would not crash the game either... However, when I tried the same with Forneus (Random Encounter version), the game crashed (same for the compendium variants of the other bosses, Including Black Frost & Thor which are both impossible to encounter unlike Surt & Forneus). Why boss's turns do not crash the game is a mystery to me, but I have no doubt that the key to solving the issue is within this disparity.

To reiterate, when I tried splitting all 37,307 lines in three ways, it was only the first third (Roughly 12,500 lines) where the battle's would crash, which is why I kept splitting the lines of that segment until only lines 66-2148 remained the common denominator (of which any splits that contained those lines would crash while others would not).

I look forward to your responses and hope we can put this Game Breaking bug to rest once and for all.