I've come across a difficulty romhack for SotN. It's only, as far as I can tell the second romhack for the game. The first being a translation of the JP version. I'm more interested in the concept of broader SotN romhacking than this specific romhack. I am sharing this here so perhaps people can use it and learn more about the game, and how to romhack it. I'd love to see more tools and projects tackle the game.
SNEER is a nice start but it hasn't been updated in ages. Nor do I think it's open source so I don't think anyone else is going to pick it up.
As for the romhack itself, I hear that it doesn't work in accurate emualtors like Mednafen PSX, but I have not confirmed this myself. But presumably if he was able to change the stats of all or most of the weapons and enemies, that means that tools could be created which do the same thing in an easier fashion. That could be a start.
I feel that time is sorta running out rom SotN romhacking. The game is only 3 years older than Super Metroid. The fanbase is getting old, and they're going to move on. So there's going to be fewer and fewer people interested in the game. With a smaller and smaller pool of people, the chance of anything getting done becomes less and less. I dream for the day of having the same kind of robust tools that Super Metroid has for SotN. A map editor would be so glorious.
Also, personally I'd make romhacks for the JP version which build upon the translation of the game. I don't care about the voice acting, the main reason is that I like the font more, and I like the more accurate item names and descriptions.
I don't have anything to contribute here content-wise, but I'm glad you made this post. Hopefully it'll stir a little more interest in hacking SotN. As popular as this game is within the series it's really surprising that more hasn't been done with it. If a good editor was made available I'd probably be working on this game right now.
I am a huge Super Metroid fan and an even bigger Castlevania fan. Around the time I was in middle school I did a bunch of work over summer vacation and Super Metroid was one of the only games I bought brand new and with my own money as a kid/young teen. When I finally got to play SotN I thought to myself "Wow. This is just Super Metroid with Castlevania music and graphics. This is so cool!!!". I stayed glued to it for weeks and I still bust it out occasionally. I even held on to my copy of SotN long after I sold all of my PS games and console. It sat around for a few years, but as soon as I got a PS2 it was one of the first games I played on it.
I guess that's all I had to say for now.
I think making a SOTN editor would be the best since we could make:
- Castlevania 3 Dracula's Curse REMAKE
- Castlevania 2 Simon's Guest REMAKE
- Castlevania Aria of Sorrow REMAKE
- And whatever we can imagine....
I wonder if people could bring the Saturn version's content into the PSX version. Or even transfer the PSP voice acting into the PSX.
There would be a lot of possibilities if someone went the full mile into hacking the game.
I'd play the Saturn content or an Aria hack if it was done well enough. Lord knows that all the portable Igavanias could use upscaled "HD" retreads.
If there were a good editor I'd probably do a Metroidvania remake (of sorts) of Castlevania Legends since, Sonia's character is rather neglected and I like hacks that add female characters. The graphics would be fun since I'm used to working in 16-bit. PSX graphics would be so much less restrictive. I suppose with the proper tools PSX hacking would be worlds easier.
The problem with this game is that it's compiled in a way that makes any change a real ordeal. If you actually wanted to make extensive changes you'd have to disassemble the stage files (IDA scripts can help), put them in a way that recompilation works, split all data banks into individual files, identify redundancies (this has tons of dupe code & assets). Once you do all that you can start reassembling stage files to allow any actual changes, otherwise you're stuck with same enemies in the same area and you won't be able to do a whole lot of expansion.
I love the idea of modding this game. If i remember correctly 'most' of the level/enemy data is well understood in that doc that is available here. the only trouble is the way the game handles backgrounds (3d stuff) if you cut that out the game files make much more sense for editing.
There's a guy named Esco who's been doing a SOTN fangame for a while. It started out as a direct hack of the PS1 version but has since moved onto a stand alone game first using Game Maker Studio and then moved onto Unity most recently.
That is the wrong way to go about changing the game. First, it's not even legal. Second, it's too much work. It's been in development, for what 8 years? It consists of remaking the entire game in a new engine. It's like Duke Nukem Forever. KISS.
If he's doing that much work, he should just get some artists to create new sprites and just make a new game and sell it as an indie game.
I'd definitely make a SotN hack were there a fully featured editor for it. Or even a HoD or AoS hack (what about DoS or PoR?), should editors be released (and I assume editors for GBA games are easier to make; they'd be closer perhaps to SNES game editors like SMILE).
The problem I fear is that it's missing that one key guy like Jathys for SMILE, who is willing and able to go all in on the extremely hard task of making the editor. Nyxojaele did a lot of preliminary work and got his work to viewer level but seems to have stopped.
Perhaps a part of that problem is that making an editor for a PS1 game is harder than making one for a SNES game. Fans of the GBA or DS games may feel like SotN is overshadowing those games and that SotN would be the CV Metroidvania to make an editor for. This might be putting someone off from making an editor for the GBA games even though it might be easier and would likely still garner interest.
Furthermore, we know now that there won't be any more Metroidvania CVs coming out of Konami (if they even care to make any more CVs period given their recent mobile obsession). IGA went independent and is working on a 2.5D CVlike which looks like it could scratch the itch but is another point removed from an actual CV game, so pretty much the only type of experiences closer to SotN and its children (for those of us for whom "rehash" is a good word and not a bad one when it comes to these) would be hacks.
This was the only topic dedicated to the SOTN HardType hack, so thought I'd post rather than start a new topic.
Did anyone play it much?
I'm going through it, and enjoying it a lot, because the higher difficulty means you need to use the equipment, spells, items, etc. in interesting ways to overcome enemies. Whereas before you could just ignore all the tactics available to you and steamroll through. A good example is that fast knife attacks are more useful than slower higher damage sword attacks, at least early in the game, especially when coupled with the time stop item.
However, I feel this hack went too far, since it disabled the ability to use shield spells. This is very disappointing since because the game is tougher, I was looking forward to having a reason to experiment with all the shield spells.
A few other things were removed too.
I'm just curious if anyone looked into hacking SOTN. The game definitely needs rebalancing, but I would like a bit more choice in what kind of patch or hack I use. This is OK, but I don't like how it's gone beyond mere stat rebalancing, into flat out removal of cool stuff like shield spells. :(
I did some years ago while working on the Italian translation. Working out enemy stats is rather easy, I even have an editor with GUI for that task. The rest of it isn't as straightforward tho.
I cheated and used a GameShark to give myself the Mablung, thereby allowing shield spells again. Which is kind of annoying, because the weapon itself is overpowered, but I honestly cannot understand why the Shield Rod was changed to a two-handed weapon. :(
The other workaround is that saves from an unpatched version work. So you can load that, equip rod and shield, save, then reload the harder game and you will be holding both. But you cannot unequip and then requip them, sadly.