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Author Topic: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much  (Read 4539 times)

AaronT

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I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« on: September 23, 2014, 05:09:07 pm »
 :banghead:
I came here a few days ago but I've only now just signed up.
I tried downloading a few rom hacks to check them out they looked really fun and I wanted to play them on my ZSNES. I tried Mario World Deluxe and Megaman X3 where you can always play as Zero. Normally when I load roms I just load them as a ZIP file and it works. Even a few hacks or translations I have found on other sites on the net. When I tried to load these roms, they didn't work. I looked over the FAQ and stuff and really just left me a little confused.

So how come some Translated or Hacked roms on other sites seem to work fine, but not here. It seems overly complicated. But I'm really interested in playing and even making some hacks! There are so many here that look really fun. I just really want to play and leave some feedback for the site owners. I'm sure I'm not the only person that comes to your site for the first time, reads the FAQ and tries to download things that don't work out.

It'd be really nice if the roms worked without extra work but I'm willing to put some effort into playing them its just I feel its hard to get started I think you should add something to the FAQ called "How do I start playing?" or something like that.  I hope someone can help me out and I hope you understand I'm just trying to get a little help and also leave some constructive critisism.

snarfblam

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2014, 05:41:01 pm »
Due to copyright reasons, RHDN does not distribute ROMs. We distribute patches, which you apply to a copy of the original game. The FAQ addresses patching (soft patching and hard patching), although I'll admit the explanations are brief and outdated.

At any rate, the short version is that you need the original ROM the hack/translation is based on (you can verify you have the right version of the ROM with the ROM/ISO information listed on the hack/translation page using a utility like the one linked to in my signature), and then you can extract the patch from the archive and apply it to a copy of the ROM using an appropriate utility: Lunar IPS for .ips files, beat for .bps files, xdelta for .xdelta files, etc..

AaronT

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2014, 05:45:39 pm »
I see. But yeah they are a bit out-dated. I understand that you need to have the system and the game to play roms legally.

It would be really cool though if someone could find a way to legally host pre-hacked roms on a site and just let you download them without having to get all complicated. Thanks for the reply though that helped a little. They really should update those faqs. ^_^

puzzledude

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2014, 06:01:25 pm »
First of all. Do you know, what the IPS Patch is? I hope you do. If you don't know, what a patch is, then let me tell you. This site can not host any Roms (actual game). The site thus does not host actual games (since this would be illegal). So it owns patches (a thing which changes the original rom into the hacked rom).

Lets say you want to play one of the Super Mario World hacks for SNES. Lets say this one (your example).
http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/66/

By pressing download, you will get the zip file, which does Not contain the game. You can not play this. You must unzip this file! Inside is the IPS patch file and readme.

Now you need Lunar IPS program.
http://www.romhacking.net/utilities/240/

Then you need to search the Internet for the original Super Mario World SNES rom file (.smc file). (Nobody can get this for you, since roms are considered illegal to host on public sites). It must be Super Mario World (U) [!].smc with the CRC32: B19ED489 as suggested by the Rom/Iso info. On the left you have: Patching info: Headered. You thus need a headered game (patch will not work if you have a non headered one). By the way, the file must have 513KB.

You can use Tush for header verification (load your SMW original rom in it, if your game has a header, ie 513KB, it is ok)
http://www.romhacking.net/utilities/608/


And this super Hasher by snarfblam for CRC verification
http://www.romhacking.net/utilities/1002/
(load your SMW original rom in it, if your crc is B19ED489, it is ok. Note: rom-hash (CRC-32) for headered SMW is B19ED489, file-hash (CRC-32) for headered SMW is A31BEAD4. If you have this, then all is ok).


Once you know, you have the correct original SMW rom, open Lunar IPS and Apply patch (when asked for original rom, choose SMW original; when asked for ips patch, choose the ips file of SMW-hack). Voila.

Your original rom SMW has changed into the hacked rom. Rename it. Now you can play it with ZSNES or Snes9x emulators. Extension is .smc by default. You can zip it now if you wish (but why would you zip a Megabyte of data, it is small as it is).



Quote
It would be really cool though if someone could find a way to legally host pre-hacked roms on a site and just let you download them without having to get all complicated.
Not happening. Roms are and will be illegal.

I know the upper process may sound complicated for beginners, but you get used to it.

AaronT

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2014, 06:18:16 pm »
Where it starts to get confusing for me is when you brind up CRC32: B19ED489, headers, and CRC verification.

My first guess was that even roms from the same country or language can have several different version types. So I have to find the correct version to patch. But it sounds a bit more complicated than that. I'm super lost.  Where I'm at now is I understand how to patch, (Kind of)

But once you brought up headers and everything beyond it gets very confusing again.
I really do appretiate the help can you maybe explain this another way? If I can figure this out maybe we could create a simpler explanation that could help others too.

puzzledude

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2014, 07:12:16 pm »
Quote
My first guess was that even roms from the same country or language can have several different version types.
Yes. If SMW is 512KB, it is different from 513KB. Both are US. Can also be 512KB EU and 513KB EU. Same for Japan version. Those are 6 versions of the same rom already.

So which one is correct to patch to?

Simple: every file has an ID (identification number). Why not give a ID number to every rom. This is called a hash or CRC (cyclic redundancy check). This is a math calculation. But you can have different methods (CRC-32 is the most known one, you also have MD5 calculation and SHA calculation, and RHDN actually requires those too, as you can see in the rom/iso info, but you actually need only CRC).

Quote
I'm super lost.
Not really. Once you know, that you have the correct original rom, you don't need CRC or anything anymore.

Header thing.
Why has one file 512KB and the other 513KB? The one with 513KB is bigger, thus it has some more data (this is the same as with some audio CD-s at the beginning - you know that thing before the song, like 3 seconds of empty space).

This (almost empty) space is a header in a rom. A leftover from the copier machine, which "turned" the phisical cart (thing which you plug into the SNES machine) into the PC file.

This data is at the very beginning (mostly 00 bytes).

So how to calculate our ID? With this empty beginning data, or without it? Note: with it everything is shifted (as audio CD song is then 3 seconds longer, than its actual length).

So you see this:
CRC32: B19ED489

This is the ID of your SMW without the empty beginning= header (but the beginning must otherwise be in the file).

So with the empty beginning= header. A31BEAD4.
----------------------------


Let me load my SMW original rom in the Hasher program by snarfblam, and everything will be clear.





Now you have the correct rom. No more headers or id-s.


Patching
(make a copy of the original rom first)

apply patch, select IPS


select ROM


Success (note: it will still say success, even if you patch to wrong original rom)



Play


AaronT

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2014, 07:26:01 pm »
I figured it out! Got it! Your right thats not as bad as I thought. Its all about having the correct original rom version. Your explanation belongs in the FAQ for real.

puzzledude

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2014, 07:37:04 pm »
Yes, it is easy with SMW, since 99 percent are headered original roms, and 99 percent of all SMW hacks (ips) need headered original roms and are also themselves headered (after patching). So if you download SMW, you most likely have the correct rom.

Could be more complex with Super Metroid or Zelda A link to the past. You can get a headered rom here, but need to have unheadered.

Some Super Metroid hacks will load despite the fact you patch to headered or unheadered rom (but will bug later if you patched it wrong).

For instance try to patch my hack Zelda3 Goddess of Wisdom to US rom (the game will load, but bugged, and will crash when capturing a Fairy) since you need to use the EU rom (non headered). So if the game is bugged, it can be due to false patching.

And that's why I ask all the patch makers: people, use Ups patches (same as Ips, but has checksums to prevent patching to false original roms).

AaronT

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2014, 07:43:15 pm »
I got it! That makes sense. So I'll look out for that too.
I actually did stumble upon another site with pre-patched roms you can download or even play online, but they don't have nearly as much variety and quality as this site does. I won't repeat the site name but There is at least one site that I confirmed working thats already doing this.
So don't know how they got past the legal stuff (for now at least) But I prefer the patches here.

You were both very helpful. Let me know if I can do anything for anyone.
Like for example trying someone's game checking out a link or whatever.

Jorpho

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2014, 10:43:54 pm »
I actually did stumble upon another site with pre-patched roms you can download or even play online, but they don't have nearly as much variety and quality as this site does. I won't repeat the site name but There is at least one site that I confirmed working thats already doing this.
So don't know how they got past the legal stuff (for now at least) But I prefer the patches here.
In all likelihood they didn't "get past the legal stuff" and are operating in flagrant violation of the law.  It probably won't get them in any trouble, but not everyone wants to take that risk.

Besides, the big problem with pre-patched ROMs is that there's no easy way to remove the patch and apply a different patch, or even a newer, improved version of an existing patch.
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puzzledude

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Re: I'm brand new to the site. The FAQ's did not help me much
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2014, 07:14:02 am »
Yes, those sites didn't get past the legal stuff. And I don't think you will find such a big database anywhere for such a variety of games and consoles.

The sites that allow users to play prepatched roms are ironic (who plays a game online). And it is less likely that the roms will be hacks, they are usually original games.

PS
I think the FAQ actually explains everything about patching (without crc or headers though). For instance you can also use the Softpatching method (you don't patch, but rather rename the rom and the ips to the same name and put them in the same folder; when loading the game it will auto-patch it while playing).