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Messages - DragonSpikeXIII

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Oh boy this font thing isn't gonna be that simple is it?

I'm looking into it, will make two versions of the edited text for in-game testing if that's ok.

This damn picasa thing, new albums default to private.....  Try again, should work now

And you're right, Antonio is clearly the best, I've performed a quick test to see how it looks at half-height and it looks right. It's the best one yet as it saves even more space. I'll only know for sure when I get to see it in-game but for now we can definitely go with that if it's good for your editor.

Tonight I'm going to edit of the first TIMs and get them ready for reinsertion.

DragonSpike, the tool I used for uncompressing the ULZ files that get spit out from the BPB is custom code I wrote : (In case anyone is curious).  CUE wrote the tool to extract out the files from the BPB itself (appreciate that CUE!).  I can create a compressor and inserter, just might be a bit :)  Course if someone wants to do it I have no objections at all.

Far as insertion for the TIMs and viewing them I recommend this :  This util is the one I've had the best results far as viewing as I've tried it with other games and it works great while other TIM programs failed.  I think this one can convert to TIM as well but I could be wrong...  And I recall that someone passed me a doc (hope he won't mind me sharing) that if I can find it may help with this too...

Dashman, I think that'll work fine as I think a good TIM program could convert it fine and use what palette is used for the original.  I could be wrong though as I've never had a need to try (usually I've only dealt with custom graphic formats).

That TIM viewer will be handy, much better than the one I was using. I too would like to thank CUE for making it possible extract the BPB!

A compressor+inserter will be necessary sooner or later, not necessarily right now as I'm still early in the editing process, figuring technical things out with Dashman and doing my first editing tests. As I haven't seen anyone else offering to help out, I might have to rely on your programming skill one day.

I'm already researching topics related to this project, such as image editing, translation and using the command-prompt (for the BPB) but I doubt I can reach the skill I see here and in other projects.

Ah, I always forget Netbeans' tendency to not keep the jar in the dist folder updated unless you explicitly ask for it, sorry about that... The link should work now.

I admit I got a bit confused with all this talk about sizes (mainly because I haven't taken a look at the BPB dump), I take it there's a "medium" size? If you need it, send an example of it and I'll add it to the next version. I'll add the font you sent as well, definitely better than Sans.
I haven't tried anything with TIM before, but my experience with TIM2 wasn't very good, mostly because the latest versions of GIMP do something really wrong with palletes of indexed images and the most I could do was royally mess up ingame graphics... I hope you're right, though.

Dashman I'm sorry for my last post, I guess it was a stream of consciousness thing. I'll do it right this time, with images.

Overall Disc 1 looks like this->

After BrAWAKENING until white-on-black (included), it's all the same size BIG font, only color pairing changes. That's about 300 something folders, but a few numbers aren't present, but that's ok for now.

Quick explanation note: black on pastel yellow are either briefings or menu communications, same colors/size BIG
                                      black on teal are debriefings   color is different but size is the same BIG
     from 400 onwards    white on black can be a variety of things, always white on black, size BIG

All in all, I've determined there are three sizes, SMALL used by your 1.0 text editor, SMALLEST for the strips, and BIG for most of the TIMs (font size 6-8). These are the names I'd use if you agree.

About the font: I've been perusing my AC3 stuff for fonts and I THINK I've found the one the devs actually used, it's an almost perfect match except it looks like it's been horizontally squashed at first though I think height gets resized to half the original value. Font+image comparison

About the size: the white-on-black images with the smaller font are the exception. Those that I first uploaded are not resized in any way for in-game display. Your 1.0 editor is tailor-made for these, so it is useful as it is in this case.

The ones from the BPB dump all have the same size larger size font. I'd like to point out that they're vertically squashed to about 256x128 for in-game display. From the looks of it the strips get resized too from 256x18 to half-height but I'm still trying to figure out the font size for those. You can see how the original font in the image dump is too tall and slim. We need to consider this fact as (with1.0) replacing stretched text with already normal (proportion) text will surely get us text about 1/4 size in-game, as if it were 256x64.

From the tests I've made I recommend you try between 6 or 8 (max.) font size for the "larger" and more prominent images. Keep the smaller on for the few that require it.

Regarding bit depth, I've found ways to convert it back and forth for editing and re-insertion so I hope that isn't a problem. As far as palettes go, I've only seen two out of hundreds that use it, if I understood this correctly. I wouldn't worry about that for now, but then again this is my first time messing with this kind of stuff.

By the way, I don't know what happened but your link for the 1.1 download seems to be for the 1.0 version still. Wrong upload maybe?

I haven't touched TIM files (although I've fiddled with TIM2 with poor results) and have never use jPSXdec, but I'm guessing you can go TIM -> PNG -> editor -> PNG -> TIM -> reinsert with no problem at all.

The editor outputs png files with the size of the original image. If you open a 256 x 256 texture, it will generate a 256 x 256 one; if you take a 256 x 400 one, that's what it will generate (not tested, please confirm), and so on. Once you've finished converting everything, send me one of each colour combination, so that I can update the program to support those.

It would be good if you tried reinserting one of each kind of those textures for the first stage when you can, to see if the text is displayed properly (and to figure out what is wrong if it doesn't).

It's been a happy coincidence that I had worked on a very similar program before. I hope it proves useful to you.

I've just checked the generated file sizes for 256x90, 256x300 and 256x400 input images. The translated file is always 256x256. These, I should point out, are the ones out. All others from esperknight's .rar are 95% 256x256, while a few folders contain the so-called little strips, but they're not that many actually. Those are 256x18, they seem to be used for titles,  sub-titles (not for actual dialogue though) and acronyms.

Here are the different combinations you asked for: I can confirm the sizes for each kind of combination you see here are as you see in the .rar, no exceptions.

BTW, last minute edit here, bit-depth is always 4 bit, so we're almost always dealing with 256x256x4

Oh and I forgot to say, I'm still trying to reinsert images to no avail. Now that I have the TIMs and a converter I'll try again. Will report back soon I hope.

February 08, 2014, 12:47:14 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
Been trying to reinsert through programs other than jPSXdec as it won't be of any help with 99% of the TIMs anyway. Found TIMmay, tried it to use it to extract TIM just to see what it can do and all it does is extract TIMs as weird tiny images, just like jPSXdec.
I have the file ready for replacement (1st mission briefing ) if you want to try it on your end. What program are you using to extract the BPB esperknight? I really need that if I'm to test these TIMs in-game.

Just got the tim pack you've uploaded esperknight, thanks for that. Took a look at the first few folders and, well, this is going to take some time but lucky me, I have that in spades. With a little bit of assistance regarding Japanese lingo here and there from BRPXQZME, and support from you guys for the more technical side of this project, I'll be able to do the grunt-work all by myself. As long as technical obstacles can be overcome, I can take care of painstakingly rewriting the text files. All 52 missions have been fully translated, the only things missing are the "search files" (in-game "wiki") which weren't included in the source for our English script, but I'll worry about that later.

I'm using an old-ass TIM viewer and converter I found on Zophar (, doens't look to be command-line though but it does reconvert back to tim and it's got a GUI which to me is better as I'm still getting used to command-line. I agree that we should try to get as much of this as automated as possible.

It was only a hunch but to finally see the extracted text look exactly as I had predicted is both good and bad. White-on-black from in-game and inter-mission cut-scenes, black-on-pastel yellow from a lot of stuff, namely pre-mission and in-game encyclopedia, and black-on-blue debriefing. I'm still converting each folder as I type this, from the looks of it it's pretty nicely organized, mission by mission. Some are single-line strips but pre-mission and post-mission are just one normal size image just like the (only) ones I initially found with jPSXdec. Still no sign of in-game green-on-black, but I haven't finished yet.

Let me see if I'm getting this right: TIM->BMP->PNG->text editor->png to bmp again then TIM then recompression and insertion. Is this the way this works?

Dashman,  I'm seeing a lot of 256x256, which is reassuring. Seems palettes won't be a problem, but I have yet to see more cases where palettes apply to our workload, only the two initial png's had as far as I can tell, but I'll need confirmation on that from someone more knowledgeable later. I have yet to see if the bit-depth in your AC3 text editor needs adjustment.

The text editor you prepared for us really is great, this will make text replacement and the required editing a much better process. Outstanding!

Quick update here, I have just converted all the TIMs, they're organized as follows:
Initial menus
Pictures, like character portraits in color and mission thumbnails
Mission briefings and debriefings
What I assume are the pre/post-mission TV broadcast and/or video-messages from characters
Finally, the last few are white-on-black. They don't really look like subtitles for the aforementioned messages, could these be the ones that get recolored to green for the actual in-mission chatter and other communications?

I need to take a closer look at them, and see where they fit in the timeline.

Wow, had no idea jPSXdec could do that, reading the manual as I type.

Will post results ASAP

February 05, 2014, 09:59:23 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
Ok, I've been trying to replace the file but it hasn't worked out for me yet.

After having read the manual I think these three points could be a problem, I hope not but here's the copy-paste anyway.

1)"the image file is the same dimensions as the TIM image
2)• the TIM image has only 1 palette
3)• the input image can be successfully converted to the same bit depth as the
TIM image it is replacing"

1) Is the size of the .bmp/ .png (a couple can only be taken out as png's by jpsxdec) after extraction the same as the size on the game iso? from bmp to png they're radically different, as it is to be expected.

2) I had to work with a png converted from a bmp as the two png text files have two palettes.

3) I don't even know if I should be worrying about this.

Anyone who has experience with this willing to help a newbie, please?


Thanks to BRPXQZME I've found the first lines and translated them. Now how do I put this file back in so that I can test it in-game?

Okay, give this a try:

It only works with png files, but I've noticed you can extract the TIM files as png, so you shouldn't have much trouble with that.

I think it's pretty self-explanatory, but here's some basic instructions:

1) Browse for the original image file (png) that you want to translate
2) Write the translation in the text area, choosing the appropriate font and background color
3) Browse for the folder where you want to save the translated texture (don't use the same as the original!)
4) Change the filename if you want to (which I think you don't) and click on "GENERATE".

The text in the preview is gonna look like text for ants, but I only put it there to check if you had room left for writing, so you'll have to bear with it.

Thanks, it's pretty late here right now ( 5AM) dropped by to say I'll try it first thing tomorrow!

Thanks a lot, that'd be great. I hope I can put together a proof of concept that way.

Okay, I have some questions:

1) Are all the images you plan on editing this size (256x256)?
2) I'm surprised the image is a jpg file, is this what you got originally? Does the program have to output images like this one (black background) or png images with transparency?
3) I've checked a video on youtube and I've noticed most of the lines are displayed in black over white bg, did you get anything like that or is the text color converted by the game somehow?

It looks like the game displays lines of text as the dialogue advances, so we have to respect the line height and the number of lines per image.

1) Not always, actually, from the few images I do get with jPSXdec they're always 256 in height but not width, that one varies from image to image.

2) It's not a proper rip or anything but a simple TIM viewer and extractor can find these same files and extract them no problem.

Regarding transparency, I doubt the in-game cut-scenes need it as the game cuts the top and bottom of the frame for these segments, and the subtitles are displayed only in the black area without overlapping the game-play area of the frame. As long the text is white on black, there shouldn't be any problem.

Another thing that makes me think that that the black-on-white text images don't use transparency is how with some enhanced emulators you can see how each line of text is its own rectangular image, each with its own foreground (black text) and background (a color very close to the one used by the area where these subs are superimposed on).

However transparency might be used by text which appears on top of the actual gameplay area, usually communications from other characters. I don't have hard evidence for this as I haven't found a way to view these lines or the images where Jp characters are stored.

3) I just can't find these black over white lines, my best results to date are with jPSXdec and what I see is what looks a lot like the in-game white-on-black subtitles.

So in the case of the white-on-black, it seems to be as you say, as long as we respect the height lines and number of lines, those shouldn't prove problematic.

But until someone finds a way to get the two other types of subtitles (in-game green-on-black and pre-/post- mission black-on-white), there's no way I can work on replacing the text. I've tried a lot of programs, to no avail. I'm just a newbie after all.

Hm... wait, what you want is a program to create images containing the text? That's what we've been doing in the SRW GC translation project. I can modify one of the Java applets to do what you need if you give me some examples of the format you want.

Converting the images to TIM, extracting and reinserting them would be on your hands, though.

Here's an example of what I think are subtitles for the in-game cut-scenes.

There's about 5 or 6 of these TIM files. No idea how to find the hundreds of lines during the pre-mission and post-mission segments though, maybe someone more knowledgeable can help with that.

Hey all :)  I apologize as I forgot about this... well... I remembered sometimes and then forgot again... what happens when you jump from project to project and easily distracted...

I've thought about it off and on though and my idea was we come up with a format (either individually named text files named after what image you want it used for or possibly a largish text file which denotes what block it's used for) and then a program would read it in and spit out images based off that.  My idea was to create a C# program that would just use whatever font was designated and then just put text on a BMP and be done with it.  Then if there's a command line TIM file creator, just feed it into that.  And then just recompress it and all that good stuff.  I know my decompressor still seemed to miss a few so I'm sure we'd have to track it down but at least 99% of it's known with what I did so a recompressor shouldn't be too hard (I say this now...).  This can be something I can look into but just don't let me forget :)  But if someone would like to do it I wouldn't mind assisting them in anyway I can.

Thank you for replying, please do look into it when you can, I'll stay in touch!

What we have found, thanks to esperknight, is that a lot (all?) of the in-game text is in images. So, any ability to make text look good at small sizes would be helpful, and being able to program something that’d put the text into those small sizes in the proper formats and all that would also be very good (there are at least hundreds of lines; you do not want to be doing this in Photoshop, I think).

I’d also be the first to admit that my first pass translation was pretty dull and possibly incorrect in spots, if passable (it was like four or five years ago, and double translation was a goal; throw me a bone, here!). I haven’t had the motivation to go back and spice it up, but the text could really use editing for style... most probably space, too.

Is writing such a program feasible? If someone could make one for us then we could do the rest ourselves. If not then I'd at least like to try editing the images themselves, which I understand is the hard way.

The general idea I get is that we need is some assistance from someone who can see where the text for each mission is and be able to extract it. The editing itself I hope I can do myself with some help from you as you already know the subject and where each part belongs. Then it's just a matter of putting it back in.

Regarding your translation, there's nothing really wrong with it, my plan was to revise it with you when the time came to actually patch the game. BTW I don't know if it interests you or not, but I've included all three existing translations for the first mission here ->  One of which is a demo made by a professional back in 1999 (I think), I think this could be a useful resource for translators such as you.

Well, theoretically I suppose you could replace all the images with a blank template and put normal text over it. At least that eliminate the need for an image editor, but still a lot of work nonetheless.

Well, at this point, entering the fifth year of our little project, I'm up for anything really . And it just so happens that I have a lot of free time now.

Hey guys of!

I'm trying to get this PS1 ace combat game translated but our team hasn't been very successful in replacing the original japanese text. We have the translation ready for a final pass before patching. (ty again BRPXQZME!!!)

Our project needs people skilled in the programming language used by the PS1 and in particular the way this particular game handles text.

This is pretty much the only place I could think of right off the bat but if you know of other such hubs dedicated to fan-subbing, please do tell me how to find them or just point me to people who're more resourceful for this kind of thing, I'm kinda lost right now. I'm pretty much a salesman trying to sell his project around right now, but it's the only chance I've got if we want to get this done!

[EDIT: I've just read the rules regarding this kind of request, really sorry I posted in the wrong forum guys, I've been so swamped with stuff lately I didn't take the time to do this properly. Personal projects, right?]


Hello everyone,

 I have a translation project for a 32-bit era gem for the PSX, Ace Combat 3: Electrosphere (website, blog I was working in tandem with a translator on some text interviews with the developers (found here but he went AWOL soon after the first release.
  There are 23 pages/files left to go, with the next one (#2) being the shortest at just one page. If anyone could help us with these, we'd be very grateful!
『エースコンバット2』は“ミリタリー系リアル”を追求しましたが、 「もっと多くの方々に遊んでもらいたい!」という願いから、 「とにかく新しいモノを作ろう!」と意気込んで、スタートしました。


キャラクターを登場させたのも、HUDのデザインを変更したのも、悩みに悩んだあげく、そういった期待を込めて開発していました。 …というわけで、ホントに新しいコトに、いっぱいチャレンジしました。

気が付いたら、もう後戻りは出来ない内容になっていました。 (笑)





 The translated text will be fully credited and published on our blog,

Thank you for reading,

BRPXQZME's latest translation pack has just been released , you can find it on our website!


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