11 March 2016 - Forum Rules

Main Menu

Color Changing in GBA ALTTP

Started by Brandon519, November 28, 2013, 03:06:09 PM

Previous topic - Next topic


Hi guys. I am new here. Sorry if this is in the wrong place.

I have always wanted to learn about ROM hacking and this place seems like a nice place to start/learn.

I have a question about palette hacking in GBA ROMs. I have done it before, but my usual way of doing this does not seem to be working. I am trying to change the colors of Link in ALTTP for GBA.

I used to use Hex Workshop back on Windows XP, had the same version for years, and editing colors in GBA games was easy. I recently upgraded my PC and lost everything on my hard drive, so I got Visual Boy Advance back, and this time I got HxD Hex editor.

Normally I would open the "Memory viewer" in Visual Boy Advance, select "Palette" at the top, scroll down to around the 05000200 area, and start changing numbers to zeroes to find which numbers effect the colors used for the character sprite. When the character turns black, I knew I had found it. I found the numbers which color Link in the game, I can set them to zeroes in the memory viewer and he turns black, but when I search them with my Hex editor, It finds nothing. The line in the memory viewer looks like this:

050002F0 | 3F 6E E9 4A EB 4F EF 12 94 1B FF 3E 16 1E BD 7E

When I open the game in HxD and search this, it comes up with nothing. I cant seem to figure out why. This was easy with the old version of Hex Workshop I used on my old PC and worked like a charm.

Anyone know why this line does not show up when I search it? Any help would be greatly appreciated.



Your slightly longer winded way would often work and you are doing nothing wrong as far it goes. However not all palettes are static and may one or more colours change in it (Mr Driller is a good example here), may be dynamic (usually the better made games like Summon Night 2), be generated in the binary (not unheard of) or be compressed (not common as they are so small but possible still).

For ALTTP I am going with compressed as I have toyed with the game before and the ALTTP side of things (four swords is quite hackable) is a pain. I lack the time to work it up right now but it is likely you are in for a fun time getting at it ( but aimed at the palette areas rather than VRAM). You could try searching for a slightly smaller fragment of the palette and that may come up but even if it does you may face further issues.


aLTTP has brightness settings, maybe a conversion algorithm is interfering with your search. You could try changing the brightness settings in case one of them represents the "base" palette. The hub for Zelda: Oracle of Ages and Seasons hacking. Join our discord for help & more information!