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Author Topic: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)  (Read 3740 times)

GuardianRandy

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Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« on: May 15, 2014, 03:32:33 pm »
Hey guys,

I've been working on translation hacking this game off and on over the past couple of years, but despite finding 95% of the game's text I can't seem to find where the game's scrolling text intro is being stored. I've scoured the data in WinHex32 and even browsed through the tiles in Tile Layer Pro without any luck of finding the full string.

I managed to find the entire block using VBA's GB Map Viewer, but I'm not sure if it's telling me the correct location (I checked hex location 000098A2 and came up with a dead end of garbled symbols with no pattern).

At first I thought maybe it was stored as a sprite or something in the tiles, but I disproved that already by changing one of the kana characters and noticed that it changed that one particular character all throughout the block of text.

Any ideas or help would be greatly appreciated!

Pennywise

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2014, 03:41:42 pm »
That address isn't a ROM address, it's a VRAM address, the memory area of the CPU that displays the graphics etc.

Either you can try relative searching or you can debug it if you know a thing or two.

GuardianRandy

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2014, 04:01:13 pm »
Gotcha. I had a feeling it was just a kind of RAM display rather than ROM, but I figured I'd check with someone who actually knows better than I do to confirm that.

I've had no luck with relative searches, kana searches, you name it. I'm sure the way I'm translating the game in general is pretty inefficient, but as long as it works, right? Haha

Thanks for the tips. I may just hold off until the very end and post a help wanted topic to bring in someone who's skilled at finding these things since I'm pretty clueless when it comes to the higher degrees of hacking. I was lucky enough to be able to make a table and figure out the hex codes used for face graphics.

Bob Liu

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2014, 04:11:33 pm »
Your gonna want to build a table for the game so you can find the text, start off by finding english text in the game and do a relative search for that. There should be some english on the title screen, get the hex's for those and use that offset to change the hex's and build an entire table of both english and japanese. You then just get the hex's for the japanese text on screen, put that into a hex editor and it should come up the offset.

Gideon Zhi

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2014, 04:13:44 pm »
Your gonna want to build a table for the game so you can find the text, start off by finding english text in the game and do a relative search for that. There should be some english on the title screen, get the hex's for those and use that offset to change the hex's and build an entire table of both english and japanese. You then just get the hex's for the japanese text on screen, put that into a hex editor and it should come up the offset.

If you'd, you know, actually read the guy's post, you'd realize that he's already found most of the text in the game, just not this stuff. I'd say he already knows all this.

GuardianRandy

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2014, 04:17:24 pm »
Your gonna want to build a table for the game so you can find the text, start off by finding english text in the game and do a relative search for that. There should be some english on the title screen, get the hex's for those and use that offset to change the hex's and build an entire table of both english and japanese. You then just get the hex's for the japanese text on screen, put that into a hex editor and it should come up the offset.

I've already made a table and translated a good 75% of the game. It's just this scrolling intro that isn't showing up for me in WinHex32. It must be input in the code differently than the rest of the text in the game.

If you'd, you know, actually read the guy's post, you'd realize that he's already found most of the text in the game, just not this stuff. I'd say he already knows all this.

Haha. Thanks. I'm glad you picked up on that.  ;)

Gideon Zhi

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2014, 04:56:34 pm »
Have you considered that the text in question might be stored across more than 8 bits? If you can find a hex editor that will let you, try searching with wildcard bytes between each character.

GuardianRandy

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2014, 05:14:56 pm »
Have you considered that the text in question might be stored across more than 8 bits? If you can find a hex editor that will let you, try searching with wildcard bytes between each character.

I've tried a relative hex search for one of the words in that string.
For example, "yutakana" is a word that isn't used very often in the game but happens to be in this intro. I know according to my table that "yu ta ka na" should be "D5 C0 B6 C5" in the hex. I've tried searching for "D5C0**", "D5**C0", and "D5****C0" and only got two exact matches for "yutakana," both of which are not part of that intro.

It's completely stumped me as to where this stupid thing could be hiding. You may be onto something with it being more than 8 bits, but I assumed that one of those wildcard searches would find it.

Pennywise

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2014, 05:54:09 pm »
*waves magic wand*

7B45F

There's nothing special about the text, the tile values are the exact same as what's in VRAM. All you need to find it is a VRAM viewer.

GuardianRandy

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2014, 06:19:32 pm »
*waves magic wand*

7B45F

There's nothing special about the text, the tile values are the exact same as what's in VRAM. All you need to find it is a VRAM viewer.

That got me closer! I noticed the block of text above the value you sent was MOSTLY all of it, but for some reason pieces are missing. And there are no spaces between any of the words like there are in the emulation. Like it should say "utsukushii kuni (うつくしい くに)" but instead says "utsukui(うつくい)" without any spaces or a "shi(し)" and "kuni(くに)." Am I running into some weird pointer issues where parts of it are being called from somewhere else?




May 15, 2014, 06:38:32 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
...and I've answered my own question.

I changed some of the values just to see if that was the text in question, and it was. Unfortunately, in order to save space, they decided to encode it to reuse tiles that had already been used. So every instance of a "yu" was replaced with my swapped character of "Y," every "ta" turned into a "T," and so on. What a mess.

I encountered this elsewhere in the game, and it's super frustrating. I think this one may be out of my league. It sounds like I'd have to code in the intro in (what I would assume to be) an empty part of the rom and use pointers to redirect the game to that section and then back again.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2014, 06:38:32 pm by GuardianRandy »

Pennywise

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2014, 08:31:15 pm »
Well, that does sound annoying.

But it might also be the perfect thing to do delve into the assembly side of things. The GB/C is one of the simplest systems to hack in my opinion and it features one of the best debugging emulators in BGB. If you're willing to invest the time and effort into learning how to use a debugger, hardware specific stuff, the assembly side of things isn't so impossible. Time and patience is the key; and asking intelligent questions.

GuardianRandy

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Re: Need help locating scrolling text in Sweet Ange (GBC)
« Reply #11 on: May 16, 2014, 08:44:50 pm »
Well, that does sound annoying.

But it might also be the perfect thing to do delve into the assembly side of things. The GB/C is one of the simplest systems to hack in my opinion and it features one of the best debugging emulators in BGB. If you're willing to invest the time and effort into learning how to use a debugger, hardware specific stuff, the assembly side of things isn't so impossible. Time and patience is the key; and asking intelligent questions.
I'll probably go ahead and translate everything else in the meantime and come back to this at the very end. Teaching myself something like that is likely going to prove difficult. I mean, I majored in media arts & animation in college to put things in perspective here, so my interests usually fall on the art side of things and less on the technical. Haha.

Thanks for the encouragement, though! I'm glad to hear GBC assembly is pretty easy. Maybe when I get around to it, all those help documents will finally make more sense.