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Messages - Chaos Rush

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281
Programming / Re: NES equivalent for VBA's disassembler?
« on: September 19, 2015, 07:36:36 pm »
Thank you, that is really helpful. Am I right in assuming that NES pointers can only reference data within the ROM bank it's located in?

282
Programming / NES equivalent for VBA's disassembler?
« on: September 19, 2015, 05:28:57 pm »
So for GBA games, VBA has an ASM decompiler that lets you type in a ROM offset and attempts to interpret it as ASM code. This makes hacking stuff like menus a lot easier, as you could just find the pointer to a text string shown in a menu, and then use VBA's decompiler to try and find the ASM code that references that pointer. I am wondering if there is an NES emulator with a similar function. I would like to alter the size of the menus in Final Fantasy II, and I am also wondering how Grond did it for Final Fantasy I. I think Fceux has a decompiler but the way it displays NES offsets are confusing to me, and I couldn't find any info on how to decompile ASM code at a specific offset.

283
Personal Projects / Re: (WIP) Final Fantasy II: Refurbished
« on: September 18, 2015, 12:07:24 pm »
Awesome news! This has been a project I've wanted to see happen ever since I first played through the Neo DemiForce translation back in the day! I attempted this myself, but Jade's bugginess screw over my work. I commend you for being dedicated to it and I'll give any input I can that might be of help to you. I'm sure you've seen quite a bit so far, so I'm eagar for this to be completed!

Also, from your last picture with the non-squish tile spells. Using li il and ll will help and will not look terrible at least for the time being.
I would definitely like a beta tester of sorts. While I don't want to release any patch until the main translation is done, it would be nice to have someone to check through the script and make suggestions as the project is being worked on, besides me. Would you like to be a beta tester?

284
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 18, 2015, 02:37:40 am »
The other problem is, that I recall, each character in FF2 can only learn 16 spells, so the menu was designed to show all spells on screen at once with no scrolling. So unless the author has plans to add scrolling (which is probably a significant amount of work), it would probably be more feasible to reduce it to single-spaced menus with 2 columns of 8 each.
2 columns of 8? I hadn't thought of that. Until I can find the code that generates these menus, I'm settling with:


It's not perfect, but it's a lot more aesthetically pleasing than those abominations of squish tiles I posted earlier. But I'll definitely have 2 columns of 8 as a goal.

Also I do not wish to take credit for the font, as it is from Tomato's Mother 1 GBA translation: http://mother12.earthboundcentral.com/

And lastly, due to the amount of discussion my screenshots have generated, I have decided to simply start my own topic instead rather than crowding up this thread. So here we go: http://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php/topic,20400.0.html

285
Personal Projects / Final Fantasy II: Refurbished
« on: September 18, 2015, 01:46:49 am »
First things first, to avoid confusion: This is a hack of Final Fantasy II for the NES, the second Final Fantasy game, not Final Fantasy IV for the SNES.

Brief history of FFII (skip if you already know):
Spoiler:
As we all may or may not know, this game was first released only in Japan for the Famicom (Japan's equivalent of the NES). It was meant to be released in the US and Square began work on translating it, but ultimately scrapped it, and the US didn't get another Final Fantasy game until Final Fantasy IV. Anyhow there exists a prototype of Square's English Final Fantasy II for the NES with a very broken translation (Hilda: "How is he MingWu?", MingWu:"Yes..I sense great vitality", Hilda: "Oh please"). In the late 90's, Neo Demiforce made their own translation of Final Fantasy II for the NES, and it was rather decent for its time, though it has its issues, which I will get into later. In 2002 Square released the Final Fantasy Origins compilation in the US for the PS1, which is the first time the US got an official release of Final Fantasy II. An updated port for the GBA was released in 2003, and all subsequent ports on the PSP and mobile devices are based off the GBA release.

Anyhow, despite all these fancy updated ports we now have, some people like me want to play the original with 8-bit graphics, but at the same time would like an updated translation as well as modern item and spell names used by Square Enix, but for Final Fantasy II there really aren't any options. The prototype ROM has laughable grammar, and the Neo Demiforce translation, while great for its time, has a lot of mistranslated lines and names inconsistent with the official releases.

Because the Key Terms in FFII can be referenced in FFII's text with just two bytes, and because the names of FFII's items/characters/key terms differ between the Neo Demiforce translation and Square Enix's modern releases, I can't simply change the respective names in the text to the modern ones, as the lengths are different, which means a lot of reformatting and repointing would have to be done. Not to mention, the translation itself has some inaccuracies here and there and rather than combing through the entire script searching for them, it's just better to redo it completely. So I have decided to redo the entire script altogether. And thus, I present to you, Final Fantasy II: Refurbished.

As of January 16th, 2016, this project is complete!

* All characters, items, enemies, location names, and key terms are the same as they are in the GBA/PSP/mobile versions of Final Fantasy II (with some abbreviations)

* completely new script made using the GBA version (Dawn of Souls) as a guide. However, Dawn of Souls contained extra lines of text that weren't in the original, and this was not the translators adding stuff for fun, but rather these extra lines were in the Japanese Dawn of Souls as well (which is why Square didn't use the PS1 script for DoS, since DoS added new lines). These extra lines are not included in FFII: Refurbished, and the only text content in the game will be the content that was present in the original Famicom release (and I guess the PS1 release, since the PS1's text content is identical to the original as well. The new stuff wasn't added until the GBA version). So basically what I'm doing is, look at the GBA script, compare it to the PS1 script, and also look at the original Japanese script (I'm not fluent enough to actually translate on my own but I do know a little Japanese, which helps somewhat) to decipher what was added in Dawn of Souls, and remove that line. Then I paraphrase wherever possible just to save space (for instance, "I'm Gordon" instead of, "My name is Gordon"). To insert the text, I have developed a new FF2 text editor specifically for this game that allows for dynamic text compiling.

* better use of icon text. The Diamond Armor and the Diamond Cuirass will actually be distinguishable.

* I wrote a new text editing tool specifically for this project (in fact I wrote two, but I've abandoned the former as the second one I wrote is a lot more versatile). My tool, CastleFynn, is capable of dynamic text recompiling, which means that it can recompile all the text at once so that they're all packed together and will handle the repointing for me. This ensures that I will have the most efficient use of space in the ROM.

Screenshots:
 



Progress:
NPC & cutscene text - 100%
Item names - 100% (expanded to nine characters)
Enemy names - 100%
Key terms - 100%
Battle text - 100%

Tools used:
* GoldFinger Hex Editor
* Free Space Finder (even though it's meant for GBA lol)
* TileMolester Alternate
* CastleFynn (FF2 Text editor made by me)

Credits:
* Square Enix - for making this game and remaking this game
* NeoDemiforce - for translating this game in 1998
* HackMew - for making Free Space Finder
* whoever made TileMolester
* whoever made TileMolester Alternate
* Vanya - stat name suggestions
* Rodimus Primal - intro text and general support
* vivify93 - formatting inspiration, as well as some item name suggestions
* SpiderDave - B-button dash

Q&A:
Q: Which translation is this based off of?
A: The GBA FF2 translation (Dawn of Souls), but any lines that weren't present in the original Famicom version are removed, and then the text is further paraphrased for space reasons. Any lines that were in the Famicom version but were changed in the GBA version, I am retranslating from scratch (as I know enough Japanese to translate simple lines, and I double and triple check to make sure they're the correct meaning).

Q: When do you think you will be finished with this?
A: I have no idea. I have a busy life. It's finished now :)

Q: Will you do the same for Final Fantasy I?
A: No lol, cause there's already plenty of definitive Final Fantasy I hacks for the NES, such as Final Fantasy Restored, or Grond's Final Fantasy.

Q: Will you do the same for Final Fantasy III?
A: Maybe... Yes, and here is the FFIII project thread: https://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php?topic=28719.0

Q: Why don't you just play the GBA/PSP/iOS version?
A: shut up lol

Q: Do you know any Japanese?
A: Yes. I was born in Japan but have lived in America since 2001. I am not fluent in Japanese, but I went to Japan's equivalent of pre-school/kindergarten (called 'youchien') in Japan, so I can read hiragana and katakana perfectly and I understand basic Japanese sentence structure. However, my vocabulary is very limited (it is the same as that of a Japanese pre-schooler), but I am working to improve it. Knowing Japanese does help with figuring out the differences between FF2j's text and FF2GBAj's text.

Q: When will you release your FF2 text editors?
A: CastleFynn can be downloaded here: http://www.romhacking.net/translations/2656/

Q: Will there be any gameplay enhancements?
A: Yes, but as a separate patch. Coming someday...

===============================

RELEASE PAGE:
http://www.romhacking.net/translations/2656/

The entire game is playable from start to finish. This is not a gameplay alteration patch, this patch acts purely as a translation/localization of the original game. (However, a B-Button dash has been added)

Patch this to a CLEAN, UNMODIFIED, JAPANESE Final Fantasy II ROM.

286
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 17, 2015, 05:14:51 pm »
A VWF would probably help a great deal, wouldn't it? Could you mock that up?
It's pretty much impossible for NES games to have a VWF, they just don't have enough RAM. Any NES game that does is sacrificing a lot to get it to work.

EDIT: also just I tried seeing if FF2's menu format was the same as FF1's, and believe me, I've tried every possible tile position that I could think of, and I've come to the conclusion that FF2's battle menu's are hardcoded, especially since they use sliding menu's that move around as opposed to FF1 simply generating a menu for a message.

287
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 17, 2015, 01:21:07 pm »
So for updating FF2 to modern standards I thought, "I know! I'll just use squish tiles to display the full spell names!" What a stupid, stupid idea.

It looks really, really ugly. Looks like I'm going to have to do some ASM hacking if I want to do an aesthetically-pleasing English version of FF2.

Ideally, this mockup is what I would like to have it look like:


I've been looking around on Google trying to see if Grond ever provided any notes on how he shifted the menus in FF1, and I'm wondering if I can do the same with FF2. As for finding it myself, I don't know where to start :( I've done GBA ASM hacking before, but that was a lot easier because VBA has its own ASM decompiler.

On the bright side I've inserted all of the NPC text for Altair and Gatrea:

288
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 11, 2015, 04:56:03 am »


This is the font work I did when I was working on it. I dropped it when I found how BAD Jade messed up my work.
I'll definitely use the item icons, as yours are a bit easier to see what they are as opposed to the Demiforce ones. I still don't like the FF1 font though, but that's just me. When I'm done with my translation hack, I hope others will use it as a base for their own English FF2 hacks (so feel free to make a font patch if I ever finish this).

I decided to use the font that was in Tomato's Mother 1 GBA translation patch, I think it looks very nice:

I've also switched to the Demiforce ROM since it has built-in DTE. The script is essentially Dawn of Souls (European version) but truncated so that it only has content that's present in the original Famicom game (really I'm just looking at the PS1 translation and removing new stuff), and then paraphrased when necessary, but I can assure you that no meaning is lost between FF2J and this.

I'll make my own thread if I make somewhat decent progress...

289
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 10, 2015, 02:11:42 pm »
From my experience with that game, the DTE tables weren't optimized with the Neo Demiforce translation, but they helped considerably. However, for space reasons I would paraphrase where you need to for space. The Dawn of Souls translation was fluffed quite a bit since they had the space to do so.

I'll take a screenshot of the font work I did when I was working on the game when I get home from work. I changed the Demiforce font to be a little more like the NES Proto cart, and added squish tiles as well. It might help you fit what you want to in game.
It turns out that the Dawn of Souls translation wasn't the one adding the fluff, the added fluff originated from the Japanese Dawn of Souls. For instance, Hilda's line when you first get to her in the throne room in the Famicom version is, "げんきになったのですね。よかった", which is basically, "So you've regained your strength? Very good." But in the GBA Japanese DoS, the line is expanded too, "げんきになったのですね。よかった。 ほんとうね つよい せいめいりょくを もっているのですね。", which was translated to, "So you've regained your strength? Very good. Your life force is strong indeed."

However, the FFOrigins line seems to be a translation of the original Famicom script, and it was translated as, "I see you have regained your strength." Idk what the Japanese FFOrigins script is, but I'm assuming it's identical to the Famicom one based on the translation.

So I guess what I'll do is use the Dawn of Souls translation (and paraphrase when possible) but omit all content that was first added in the Japanese Dawn of Souls.

290
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 10, 2015, 11:11:59 am »
That looks amazing. You made the tool? I was using Jade but it was buggy and was attempting something similar. Personally I like the original font used but if you can update the script to that game and have an editor handy, that would rock!
Yep, tool was made by me with Microsoft Visual Studio! It's the first ROM hacking program I've ever made. My incentive to make the tool was due to how buggy Jade was. However, unlike Jade, this tool will solely focus on text, and will not be a map editor. I will release the tool once I work out some bugs with compiling text with DTE tables when using the Demiforce translation.

Also technically there is no 'original font', because I'm working from a Japanese ROM :P but yeah I know what you mean (FF1 vanilla, and FF2 Demiforce). Personally I want to have a thin font for two reason: 1) the Japanese font is also thin 2) a thinner font means more letters can be fit in 'squish tiles'.

Because I am working straight from a Japanese ROM though, I don't have access to the DTE text bytes (a single byte that can represent two characters of text). I am wondering if I should just switch to the Demiforce ROM as a base, and maybe that might be enough to fit the entire GBA script in the ROM by using the DTE tables.

And lastly, should the script be based off of US Dawn of Souls, or European Dawn of Souls? For some reason they are slightly different, and while I know the European one is more recent, I don't know if changes were made simply to improve the script, or if it was done to make it more suitable to European culture. And seeing as you've got some Final Fantasy hacks under your belt, would you recommend paraphrasing the script for space reasons, or should I try and get the GBA script in word-for-word?

291
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 10, 2015, 04:06:13 am »

This is all done from scratch on an unmodified Japanese FF2 ROM. What I did:
* changed some font characters to English, using the font gfx from FF Restored (but I removed the shadow because I think it looks better that way)

* over the past week I've been working on a tool in Visual Studio that's a text editor for FF2, that way I don't have to manually calculate NES pointers (I'll release the tool when I iron out all the bugs)

* While I'm not fluent in Japanese, I can read hiragana and katakana (but not kanji) and went to pre-school in Japan (I was born there), so all I'm saying is that I'm not translating blindly.

* dialogue is directly taken from the GBA version. I plan on making this as close to the GBA version as much as possible.

Let's see how much of the GBA English script I can port over before running out of space...

EDIT:
also here's the tool I've been working on with VS 2013:

292
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 03, 2015, 03:22:40 pm »
Quite worth finishing.
I love it! :) Can't stand those overbrightened/oversaturated colors of the GBA Final Fantasy ports!
Well replacing the overworld, town, and enemy colors are actually rather easy, but I'm having an issue with the battle backgrounds, as they use compressed palettes which are a bitch to edit... I'm trying to see if maybe I can re-insert the backgrounds from scratch though, but that's easier said than done.

293
ROM Hacking Discussion / Re: Screenshots
« on: September 01, 2015, 04:30:57 pm »

(WIP) Final Fantasy 1 GBA color restoration, using the PS1 and WonderSwan colors. Worth finishing?

(Don't worry guys, this is done on a European ROM so it can be played in multiple languages)

294
ROM Hacking Discussion / Reposition HUD on Super Mario Bros.?
« on: June 20, 2015, 03:36:31 pm »
Would anyone knowledgeable on SMB hacking for NES know how exactly the rendering area is determined? I know that in SMB, the HUD portion is a background, hence why no sprites ever appear behind the letters (such as clouds or vines). I've figured out how to alter the position of the text in the HUD, but the problem is that in-game it won't show up if I position the text in an area that's normally covered by sprites (i.e. Mario, obstacles, enemies), but I know that I've repositioned it properly because it shows up in the pre-level screen with the black background.

Problem is, I have basically zero knowledge of NES hacking, but I know plenty of GBA hacking so I at least know my way around a hex editor. The SMB ROM map on Data Crystal (http://datacrystal.romhacking.net/wiki/Super_Mario_Bros.:ROM_map) doesn't have anything on the rendered viewport. I would like to decrease the vertical size of the rendered viewport in order to increase the size of the HUD background layer, so then I can reposition the HUD at a lower position.

Now why would I want to do such a thing? Because I want to create a version of Super Mario Bros. that is optimized for use on the PocketNES emulator for GBA when viewed with 1:1 scaling.

The left screen is vanilla SMB for NES, the middle screen is the desired hack I would like to do (it's a mockup!!!). The right screen is what the desired outcome would look like on PocketNES with 1:1 scaling.



Any help is appreciated! (again I have experience with GBA hacking, even some ASM, so there's no need to explain things like I'm five, HOWEVER, I know basically nothing about NES hacking)

295
Personal Projects / Re: Mother 1 GBA Color Restoration [completed]
« on: June 18, 2015, 07:55:59 pm »
Ideally a hacked version of EB0/EBB would be definitive IMO because as far as I know it's the most updated codebase (not counting the GBA port) but it also boasts superior music. And yeah, I wouldn't mind a NES hack containing Mato's full script (even DPP said he would if he could), but I do understand why it would be ridiculous (believe me, I've tried). Though I suppose it wouldn't be too hard to fix the item and enemy names, though when I looked into it I couldn't quite grasp how NES pointers worked, I'm only knowledgeable on GBA pointers. I'm not even bothered that much by Phil Sandhop's translation, it's the lack of consistency that I'm bothered by (item and enemy names that are different between EB0 and EB despite being the same in M1 and M2 Japanese), and I understand that this doesn't bother everyone because it doesn't affect game play at all. I think the GBA version + Mato's translation is the closest we'll ever get to an English definitive version, but one reason why it would still be nice to have it on NES is because of the superior music on the NES version. Someday I'll try to look into fixing the music on the GBA port, problem is the M1 GBA port doesn't use the Sappy engine that most GBA games do (but the M2 port and the 'game select menu' does).

296
Personal Projects / Re: Mother 1 GBA Color Restoration [completed]
« on: June 18, 2015, 06:09:58 pm »
your best bet is to just settle for 25th Anniversary or the GBA version with Mato's translation.
That's exactly what I'm doing...?

Also while the definitive version of Mother 2 and 3 are definitely the Japanese versions (if you can understand it), I don't think that's the case in the Famicom version of Mother, which has an incomplete ending (though it could be argued that it's not in complete, it's just spookier), and something is different about getting the final melody (don't exactly remember what though).

297
Personal Projects / Re: Mother 1 GBA Color Restoration [completed]
« on: June 18, 2015, 12:58:04 am »
Nice work.

Unless this is the hack you're thinking of, there is a patch that fully uses Mato's translation in the NES version. It also updates the graphics too. http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/2211/
Actually "Mother: 25th Anniversary Edition" uses an abridged version of Mato's translation in order to fit in the NES ROM without doing major text repointing (source: https://forum.starmen.net/forum/Community/PKHack/Mother-Earthbound-for-NES-with-tomato-s-translation/page/1#post2069733). And not all enemy and item names are identical, it appears that DragonDePlatino only changed enemy/item names if it fit within the character limit of the EB0 enemy/item name (hence why the Redneck enemy is still 'Wally' in that hack), and that hack uses "Giegue" as the final boss name instead of "Giygas", despite the fact that they have the same name in Japanese and Shigesato Itoi himself has said that the final boss of Mother 1 and Mother 2 are the same entity (but of course, that could easily be remedied with simple search+replace hex editing). I'm not trying to sound rude in any way and I apologize if I come across as that, I'm just explaining why I cannot view 'Mother: 25th Anniversary Edition' as the definitive version of Mother 1.

Dear god, does the Virtual Console version really look THAT dark?? I prefer the washed-out, ugly GBA scheme over the muted dark colors on the VC.

Though, of course, the mock NTSC NES palette is the best.
Yeah, that's the actual palette that Nintendo uses on their NES VC games, as someone over at GBAtemp ripped the exact palette and I just inserted that into M1 GBA's palette. In the Mother1+2 ROM, at 0xF6441C are 128 bytes (64 colors) that the entire game uses as its palette data, and this palette is 'imitating' the NES's 64 color slots. Using a color tool (Advanced Palette Editor) you can modify the palette to whatever NES palette you want, and that's how I made these patches. I decided to include the VC palette anyway despite how dark it looks on most displays because it's the closest we'll ever get to an 'official' NES palette. I'm tinkering with that palette though and might make a third patch that looks like the VC colors, but brightened so that the 'white' color is actually white.

EDIT: updated the link which now contains an extra patch that is basically VC colors but brightened, screenshots in the first post also.

298
Personal Projects / Mother 1 GBA Color Restoration [completed]
« on: June 17, 2015, 04:54:40 pm »
As some of you may know, a lot of GBA games have brightened, washed out colors in order to make it easier to see on an unlit GBA. This is a patch for *Mother 1+2* for GBA that restores the colors back to what they were on NES (just the Mother 1 side of the ROM, I have not bothered with the Mother 2 side and don't have any plans to)

...except I've made several patches. Because there are no true NES colors because of the way it handles colors. To my knowledge, NES games don't have any palette data, they just have 'color assignments' choosing from the NES's 64 different color 'slots'. But the way these colors appear can be different from one TV to another, whether it's between NTSC and PAL, or RF/AV cables... so really there are no 'true' NES palettes, hence why I've included several palette options from various sources.

When they ported Mother 1 to the GBA, they adapted the NES 64 color limit to it, and came up with their own unique color palette that was clearly optimized for the original model GBA and nothing else. Unfortunately that palette they used makes trees look neon-green on backlit displays.

Screenshots/Comparison:
(Yes, oddly enough the original GBA palette is the darkest for Magicant)

Mother 1 + 2:


Smooth(FBX):


NES Classic Edition:


Wii U Virtual Console:


These patches can be used in conjunction to any of the translation patches out there. You can patch it to a clean ROM (which means you'll play it in Japanese), or you can patch it to an already-patched translated ROM, either way it doesn't matter, as the only data these patches touch is the 64 colors that the game uses as its palette data.

I recommend using the standard Smooth(FBX) patch. Only use the Virtual Console color patch if you're playing it on a really bright display.

Link to patches: https://www.mediafire.com/file/ai3xr14iefm30js/MotherColorRestorationPatches.zip/file

The .zip file contains:
1. "M1 Color Restoration - Smooth(FBX).ips" (RECOMMENDED)
-makes color palette look like the accurate one made by FirebrandX,who went through great efforts to reverse-engineer an accurate NES palette.

2. "M1 Color Restoration - NES Classic.ips"
-makes color palette look like the one used by the NES Classic Edition.

3. "M1 Color Restoration - VC Official.ips"
-makes color palette look like the one that Nintendo uses on their Virtual Console releases for NES games on Wii and Wii U.

4. "BootToM1.ips"
-the game will immediately boot to Mother 1, and will skip the 'choose game' menu entirely. It essentially turns "Mother 1+2" into just "Mother 1".

5. "SkipSplashScreen.ips"
-ONLY USE THIS ONE IF YOU HAVE ALREADY APPLIED MATO'S TRANSLATION PATCH. What this patch does is it removes the splash info screen from Mato's translation patch. I wanted to remove it because in order to make a standalone Mother 1 for GBA, and Mato's splash screen mentions his Mother 2 hacks which is redundant if you're also going to use the 'BootToM1' patch.

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