News: 11 March 2016 - Forum Rules

Author Topic: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon  (Read 20628 times)

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« on: August 29, 2018, 09:37:31 am »
Good morning!

UPDATED 7/30/19 : You can find the patch to play the game here:
 http://s000.tinyupload.com/index.php?file_id=26548398523708524102


This is for use with Final Fantasy II (U) (V1.1).smc


Over the past year I've been tinkering with an "extreme" difficulty hack for FF4, which eventually became known as Born of a Dragon.  :)

Born of a Dragon is primarily a difficulty hack, set to what I would consider the sweet spot, which is 4 out of 5 difficulty stars.  My direction was to make the game hard without committing any of the "big three" difficulty sins.  Namely, not a grind fest, not requiring omniscient knowledge of secret passageways with no hints as to their location, and no ridiculous luck required.

What the hack shaped up to be was extremely fun and a thinking person's version of FF4.

FEATURES:

- EXTREME difficulty!  You'll really have to use your head to figure out how to beat many bosses.  >:D
- A totally reworked leveling system!
- Multiple new spells for many characters!
- A totally reworked weapon/armor system!
- Multiple new side quests for powerful weapons and summons at the end game!
- Lots of new secrets!

If you are looking for less a brand new game, but a faithful re-balancing with a few pieces of additional content, then this is the hack for you.

If you're looking for a very difficult FF4 experience that is well balanced without being gimmicky, then this is the hack for you.

NOTES:
None of the primary plot has been altered.  Anyone in the game who originally spoke about plot related topics has been left intact.  However, many of the NPCs who said irrelevant stuff now have valuable tips and clues regarding weapons, secrets and side quests.

The bosses are the "bottlenecks" of the game.  Leveling up to bosses is intended to make you powerful enough to beat those bosses, however if you try to level past that intended "window", you'll find leveling becomes a bit stagnant.  Bosses can be strategy checks, gear checks, puzzles, combinations of all three, etc.

RUNNING

This is a very controversial change.  While inside dungeons in FF4:BoaD, you are not able to run whatsoever.  Why? First, it makes little sense that in a closed, confined, dark space chock full of monsters, you could just run the other way and not either run into more monsters or fall off a cliff or something.  Secondly, it resolves a ton of issues with balancing and pacing that the original game suffered from, due to it's lenient run mechanic.  Eblan, Cave Magnes, Sealed Cave, Feymarch (Land of Summoned Monsters) and Sylph Cave can all be tuned to a specific level window, whereas previously, one could simply chain-run through, grabbing treasures.  I was so pleased with the results, that I made all dungeons in the game like this.  You'll find yourself having to ration items more, look for save points and plan your battles and steps accordingly.  Finally, it ensures that all the new AI and scripting done to dungeon monsters gets seen and not simply run through and skipped.  If you absolutely hate this mechanic, I can understand, but I urge you to give it a try.  :-*


RELEASE:
This release is complete all the way to the end of the game, but there are several tiny bugs which I'm working on fixing.  I'd also like to resolve any of the original vanilla issues, like critical hit rates bugging out or elemental resistances.  Please stay tuned for 1.0



SCREENSHOTS:





LOOKING FOR BETA TESTERS!

Please try out the game and let me know what you think.  :woot!: :woot!:

August 29, 2018, 04:44:32 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
TO DO LIST

HACKING
- Make MP restoration a different color than green, preferably purple?
- Find a way to remove all equipment from a character who is leaving party into the Fat Chocobo
- Make Sleep status be removed on physical hit
- Add ATB bars (I know there is a utility that does this already, but it doesn't do only that, and some other things it does are undesirable for this hack)
- Fix any remaining Vanilla bugs (Immune/4x bug, Long Range bug)
- Fix intermittent bug where Kainazzo will leave water form due to any damage rather than only Lit damage
- Some dancers, though they are present in NPC list, are missing (Troia Dancer in Troia Cafe)


VALUE ALTERATION
- Rebalance moon monsters/bosses to be better/easier
- Change appearance of some spells to be slightly different than other used spells

GENERAL
- Rebalance in general
- Typos
- Add more references in-game to BOAD specific mechanics

August 29, 2018, 10:02:29 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
FF4 BOAD 1.01

-------------

- Applied chilyfeez's User Options, Grimoire LD's ImmuneFix and Dragoon ZERO's LongRange bug fix.  Will change the use of Whistle and "Sylkis" (Carrot).

August 30, 2018, 09:49:09 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
FF4BOAD 1.02
--------------

- Some typo fixes, added some dialogue pointers to new command functions, i.e., Pray, Sing, Mix, etc.

http://s000.tinyupload.com/index.php?file_id=89078943772040048659

August 31, 2018, 04:43:01 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
FFBOAD 1.03
----------

- Fixed an issue where Troia dancers were disappearing
- Made Dance collection quest make more sense, allude to reward
- Adjusted difficulty of Kainazzo
- Yang's claws no longer do massive, huge amounts of damage (racial bonus removed)
- Fixed various typos
- Credited chillyfeez and included instructions on how to use User Options



September 01, 2018, 11:05:01 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
1.04
-----

- Reduced difficulty of Golbez in DC by removing instant death touch, slowing him down a bit



September 05, 2018, 08:40:15 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
1.05
-----

- Dark Elf script was disrupted by Spectre script.  Fixed Dark Elf, will fix Spectre once I get that far in bug test play.
- Some items renamed for easier understanding of elemental properties.
- Adjusted difficulty of some Sylph Cave monsters, still  may need more buffing
- Adjusted difficulty of some Sealed Cave monsters

Pugs and Bomb summon have been tested for being overpowered, and seem okay.  Pugs should never work on bosses...  I tested a few, and it doesn't seem to, but I'm never quite sure with FF4kster.  Some things are hard coded with no indication.

I've been watching some videos of Final Fantasy Free Enterprise randomizer, and there are a bunch of neato features built into that.  I'm going to reach out to the developers and see if they'd be willing to share some of the code, especially the ability to discard treasure items upon opening chests and unequipping characters as they leave the party.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2019, 12:47:08 am by MGE »

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2019, 09:41:15 am »
Greetings!

This project is not defunct!  In fact, I just stopped updating this thread and my changelog (sadly...) but continued working on the hack.  It's almost done!

Zeromus needs a few tweaks, the moon needs slight rebalancing, and there are some additional dialogue entries I'd like to fix, but otherwise, it's ready to go!

http://s000.tinyupload.com/?file_id=00530563129891772298

If you're interested in testing (especially using odd status effects on random monsters to make sure they don't softlock or freeze the game) let me know, I could always use the help.

Thanks!

chillyfeez

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 836
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2019, 10:08:59 am »
Hello,

This hack seems to have flown under my radar up until now. Judging by your description, I don't think this is "the hack for me," because as a player I am a complete wuss.

But I am always interested in learning about "new" FF4 hacks.

Was this all done with FF4 hacking utilities (FF4kster, etc) or have you done some assembly hacking on your own?

If you're looking for play testers, it might be worth your while to join the FF4 speedrun discord. The folks over there are the hands-down masters of playing FF4, and the channel even has a #romhacks page.
https://discord.gg/2yykAV

BTW, a few years ago I was working on a (somewhat abandoned now) patch that would implement a PHS system into FF4. I never got there, but part of what I was doing involved dumping a departing character's equipment into the inventory. If the inventory was full, the "choose what to keep" screen would open up. I'm not 100% positive I still have my notes on that available, but if I can find them, they'd probably be very useful to you dumping equipment into the fat chocobo. Assuming that's still something you're working on...
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

Latest Demo

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2019, 03:22:41 pm »
Hello,

This hack seems to have flown under my radar up until now. Judging by your description, I don't think this is "the hack for me," because as a player I am a complete wuss.

But I am always interested in learning about "new" FF4 hacks.

Was this all done with FF4 hacking utilities (FF4kster, etc) or have you done some assembly hacking on your own?

If you're looking for play testers, it might be worth your while to join the FF4 speedrun discord. The folks over there are the hands-down masters of playing FF4, and the channel even has a #romhacks page.
https://discord.gg/2yykAV

BTW, a few years ago I was working on a (somewhat abandoned now) patch that would implement a PHS system into FF4. I never got there, but part of what I was doing involved dumping a departing character's equipment into the inventory. If the inventory was full, the "choose what to keep" screen would open up. I'm not 100% positive I still have my notes on that available, but if I can find them, they'd probably be very useful to you dumping equipment into the fat chocobo. Assuming that's still something you're working on...

chilly!  Actually, you helped me ages ago on a different forum solve a problem with this very hack.   :thumbsup:  Somehow, probably due to over editing, I messed up the Summoner orb items in game that teach Rydia the 4 extra summons.  You helped me fix the hex code. You are credited in game, as some of the stuff you've added to the community was used.

This hack was mostly done with FF4kster (incredible thanks to PinkPuff, who helped me via e-mail occasionally, as well), but some small stuff was done with Tile Layer Pro and YYCHR.

Regarding your PHS patch, the part where you dump inventory into the Fat Chocobo-  that would be INCREDIBLY useful for this hack.  I've wanted such a thing for a long time, but programming it was beyond me.

In addition to that, I have a small list of "creature comforts" I was going to ask the community for help on including making some items unusable in the menu/combat and figuring out some odd bugs (1.  When 1 character is wearing elemental resistance or immunity, it somehow "spreads" to other characters in the party, 2. some spells just don't work as planned, e.g., when Zeromus uses D.Knight ability "Dark" it instantly kills the entire party regardless of damage shown, etc.).

Glad to hear from you!

I really appreciate your help from before

Grimoire LD

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 455
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2019, 03:27:44 am »
I have two days to spare before I need to head back to class. Like Chillyfeez this project went completely by me, I was unaware that this existed. I would love to test this out and give you my thoughts. If you don't know several years ago I was working on my own FFIV challenge hack called FFIV-Combat Boost which balanced the difficulty with new weapons, items, commands, area, etc. Yet once I reached the Underworld I tried to do a full revamp which blew up in my face. While I still have that final release of Combat Boost just prior to the Underworld available, I lost the vast majority of my hacking notes with the loss of Slickproductions, so picking it back up and trying to finish it without notes does not seem plausible at this point in time.

However I am always looking forward to seeing what other people do with their take on a hardmode of FFIV, so it will be a pleasure to run through this and give you my thoughts!

EDIT: Alright, let's begin!

So, I see FloatEye's are now ParaEye's, an interesting introduction to the new foes... I also see that Cecil begins with 10 HP, I hope that's intended... The Raven or Zuu is called Aquila now, perhaps water based? I am interested to see where that goes.

Shadow Sword, Iron equipment and Strength Ring? Level 1, 2 (natural) Str, 2 Agi, 2 Vit, 0 Wis, 0 Wil, 10 HP... Poor Cecil has seen better days!

I see you used Chillyfeez's Cache option, which is wonderful (may want to remove the Big Chocobo Sprite though), you also included the Active/Wait modes, rather nice.

The Shadow Sword gives 3 Atk at 95% accuracy, this should be a curious start.

"Scan will work on most bosses, but may not tell the whole story", oh fun! I like the new text from the mages, even with a hint at a new spell in Life3.

The new text from the captive Mysidian mages is also a nice foreshadowing, a fine touch there.

...Nice to know that about racial gauntlets, though I could have guessed it, I'm glad I talked to everyone.

"Mysidia practices both Black and White magic but truly excels at White." Huh? Is this implying that Palom may not be as useful when you get him?

Hmm, so Kain starts with an Agility ring, giving him 6 Agility at the start.

First person in Baron mentions that dancers hold the key to great power... I'm always glad to see hacks that do more with these events.

I'm... not sure the child in the inn breaking the fourth wall and mentioning alcohol was such a good idea. The ad for Brave New World is nice though.

I liked Cid's reference to FFVII, cute touch. Also his daughter contradicts what the guard said "Use your GP and Items, its what they're there for." While she says to save GP. The changed books are good, have some useful info. for newcomers. Onto the Training Hall then.

I like this new Equipment system where each slot is meant to guard or enhance a specific attribute. So most weapons now have weapon spells, hmm?

"Paladin spells reflect the inner strength of the caster." Interesting...

Rare steals? Does that mean you implemented an alternative steal system different from the original game?

"Bars and inns hold valuable tips about side quests and powerful items!" A perfect use of those woefully underdeveloped places from the original game. I look forward to checking those out!

Was not expecting to find a Megalixir at game start!

It will take some time to get used to this battle system. I am so used to decent numbers at the start. So far of the handful of battles I've fought it seems to work well.

In the Chocobo Forest I found a Light Stone, I'm curious to see what that will do.

And made it to Misty Cave, I ran into an encounter with two StingRats and one actually landed Sting. I was going to originally comment that it never seems to hit, but its low accuracy has a reason, it will kill the target at this point. I'll post more when I make it to the Mist Dragon.

EDIT 2:

Well, I just wasted the Light Stone accidentally in the Mist Cave, but I have a feeling that run was going poorly anyhow, having to use my Life already.

Cecil sure takes a lot of punishment, but I like how Kain's Jump ability is massively useful here, it may be best to put them both in the backrow for now.

I seem to be getting a large number of 2 StingRat and 2 Imp fights again and again in Mist Cave. Sure there was one fight with Larva, but 1 out of... 8 or so. Maybe it's just odd RNG. In any event I noticed that 2 chests were also removed from the Mist Cave.

The Mist Dragon was... interesting. I got a lucky crit at the start, dealing 20 damage or so, but beyond that I could only deal 1/2 no matter what I used. Maybe I should have used a Molotov, but I didn't want to waste it. It seems I was at just the right level (level 4) as Ice-1 was dealing just below my max HP and I could recover with the Tonics I bought and the Lifes I was winning from the Imps on the way there.

I noticed that you changed Kain's early Will gains to 0, haha, fair enough. It seemed odd that he had such high Will in the original game, but was mind-controlled several times, but I assume that's because he was supposed to have White Magic at one point.

As far as I could tell there was nothing around Baron or in the Mist Cave that could blind me. I never ran into the moths that would normally do so. Next edit will cover up through to OctoMamm.

EDIT 3: I like the kid outside of Kaipo who will sell you Tonics before you go to fight the Baron Soldiers, excellent way to avoid softlocks.

The Baron Officer having counter-attacks is a smart idea, but one Molotov should probably still be used here to deal with at least one of the Soldiers.

...Oh! The Shadow Sword casts Blink! I was not expecting that. Here I was keeping Cecil in the Backrow.

Getting past the Officer's Fire 1 is difficult. I guess I should buy some more Tonics...

Phew, took a couple of attempts but I managed to beat the Officer, really it just comes down to getting to the front after defeating the Soldiers, casting Blink, and healing after each attack. Not too complicated, a bit long though, maybe I missed an easier solution.

Whoa, nice rewards for victory. Strength Ring, Vitae Gauntlets (I assume something with Stamina), and a couple of Tonics.

Nope, Vitae Gauntlets seems made for Rydia, +3 Agi, +3 Wisdom and a good amount of defense. Side note, I didn't know you could have 0 Agility.

I'm surprised to see the little girl Mage can equip an Iron Helm. So the Robe gives +3 Will, I'll have to remember that.


"Don't swing at OctoMamm, he'll grab you and won't let go!" Good to know. Evil Spell? Distant Mountain? I'll keep a lookout...

The Sandworms have buried relics, hmm... I guess not a bad idea to try and find one at some point.

Oh, the Detox Staff has 99% accuracy, great way to make it usable in battle, its pretty good at hitting even from the backrow.

I expected the Sandworms to be scarier, thankfully 1 Ice-1 and it went down.

Sleep only costs 1 MP eh? So it seems status effects will play a larger role, good.

Seems that Tellah lost a bit of his utility, he doesn't have enough MP to even cast Slow, I hope he still gains some. So it seems the only healer is Rydia, alright then.

Hmm, a slight glitch. If a character is revived outside of battle with higher Stamina (x5) than their maximum HP, they'll revive with more than their maximum HP.

Oh, Tellah learns magic now... I can't say I expected that.

Whoa! An Ice Shield from some Piranha's and EvilShell's! That's a nice find!

"We cannot defeat it using handheld weapons. We must defeat it using magic!" Nice break of expectations. Since in the original fight magic is hardly effective against OctoMamm, but here it looks to be the only way of dealing with it. I would complain about this being in an event scene where some people may not have been watching, but its hinted at in the Kaipo bar as well.

You get some nice rewards for fighting Jelly's! 3 Potions and a Life Potion is always good. And Ethers! It's best to hunt these things down!

LeatherGloves from MadToads, let's see here... +3 Stamina and Wisdom, looks like a nice upgrade for Tellah!

So the Darkness Sword, blinds foes, a nice idea.

So the fight with OctoMamm begins, everyone is around Level 7. First thing I do is requip Cecil with the Shadow Blade so he can cast Blink on Tellah and Rydia.

I see OctoMamm attacks eight times, but in the back row most of those attacks missed...

And OctoMamm was a relative joke. It went down in maybe... 5 turns. A ChocoBop did 213 damage, and a couple of Lits dealt anywhere from 50-90 damage each attack. Blind is a non-issue since that doesn't effect Magic Accuracy and we've already been warned not to physically attack. I was expecting something a bit more troublesome. I guess I avoided the worst of it by knowing what not to do.

Well, let's raid Damcyan. "Save the royal robes, everything else is worthless..." I'll keep a lookout.

Ah, the IronSilk robe? A nice +3 Stamina bonus at the loss of 3 Will.

Cure Staff? I wasn't expecting to see this for a very long time. And Edward joins at Level 5 (the first time that has ever been a respectable level in an FFIV romhack.) His stats aren't too bad, I gave him most of Tellah's old things, the Leather Gloves, Steel Helm, and the IronSilk Robe and he's got some respectable defenses now. I take it back, he has the Most defenses right now.

EDIT 4:

Hmm, Lull enemies to sleep, alright. Restore MP with Choir, eh? "Sing will cast a special spell if the Prince is under a status effect." In the original game this is only Frog Song, was this changed then? Protect, healing, and the Dreamer Harp when used as an Item casts Sleep, it makes sense.


A Heat Rod from the SandWorm, possibly? I'll take it!

Went to check out Mt. Hobbs to assure nothing game breaking happened early and ran into 2 Spirits. So it seems Spirits generally now have very high Defense, but the Cure Staff can deal with them quickly and they might have x4 weakness to Holy if the Cure Staff is considered Holy Elemental.

Bio-1 eh? I guess it's a new line of spells.

I like the Imp Captains start of battle abilities of casting buffs on all of its party, great touch!

I see, the Choir is a Harp which restores MP, alright.

Frost Rod, always nice. A Fire Shield? Hmm, I'll remember it...

Hmm, no hints as I recall to the Antlion, so this is going to be blind.

450 HP, but with a nasty Counter and a near-instant kill Sting every couple of turns, come in with plenty of Life, it took a number of turns of using Chocobop a Grenade and another Chocobop quite a few turns later to defeat it. A fast and frenetic battle that you need to use some strategy to stay alive with.

So Weepers are weak to Dark, good idea.

Well, since Rosa's joined the group there's no way to hide in the backrow with everyone, so Cecil needs to head to the front. Ah, the Choir Harp is Holy Elemental, I wish I had realized that some time ago...

Killed by MomBomb before I barely had the chance to plan. Well, I'll remember that then.

Alright, this time I have the Fire Shield equipped and a clearer idea of what I'm up against...


1600 HP, weak against Ice, alright... I like Yang's new healing skill, it reminds me of Chakra, which is nice. And killed by the Double Blaze/Fire 1 combo, thrice in a row.

I think I'm done for tonight.

Pray has a 50% chance of casting Life2, eh? That is wonderful to know!


« Last Edit: July 28, 2019, 11:33:16 pm by Grimoire LD »

Special

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 385
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2019, 09:47:49 am »
Lucky MGE, you got two FFIV legends/experts looking at your hack. :beer:

Grimoire LD

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 455
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2019, 11:35:28 pm »
Thanks for the kind words Special, if only I had put my notes somewhere that wasn't on an ailing site or a dead hard drive. There's still so much I would like to do but rewriting the years of lost notes is not too enjoyable, I feel.

Well, I apparently hit the character limit on my last post so I will continue here...



I felt forced to grind to deal with the MomBomb, trying to equip Agility rings to everyone did not work, nor did the Fire Shield turn the tides, moreso than just letting me survive. I was Level 9 with Rosa being Level 8 prior, now most of the party is Level 10 with Rosa being Level 9. In the grinding I got Ethereal Gauntlets, so maybe that will be useful at some point... Well, they raise Wis/Will by 3, so that's nice.

This time I will try to cast Slow as soon as it begins.

And... all but instant party wipe with Rosa, Rydia, and Yang dying just as I cast Slow, hrmm...

Well, I had a good run, I just let Yang and Rosa die after Rosa had cast Slow twice, and Edward managed to get Haste twice but even then the Burn eventually overtook Edward and it was over. It seems the strategy is to keep Rydia up at all costs, but Rydia needs the support. Also the game is not supposed to be very grind-heavy, but it seems you need to bring in a Lot of consumables if you want to stand any chance.

Well, after quite a few attempts I managed to whittle it down. I started with just getting everyone buffed, healing with Edward, Rosa, occassionally Yang and Blinking the team one by one with Cecil. I slowed MomBomb twice and got a lucky Haste with Sing, along with a bunch of Shell/Protect buffs. I then used the Frost Rod and Focus to deal some damage, but it felt as much damage as I was dealing it was nearly being healed. After quite a bit of stalling I finally got MomBomb to her limit and due to all the buffs I got the only person wiped out by Explosion was Rydia. I quickly revived her and Kicked the Bomb circle, only to be met with them casting Blaze on themselves. Thankfully I managed to cast Ice-1 on the lot, killing a couple of them and brought them down one by one. The Blink and the Shell buffs protected everyone from the damage basically. It was much easier going from there.

If I may make a suggestion... Yang doesn't come with any claws equipped which makes his accuracy 50 whenever he attacks, which makes him nigh-useless in the first phase because it seems you're going to miss your Focused attacks half the time. I would suggest increasing the hitrate of unarmed since most things in this hack had their hit-rate substantially increased.

Hmm, how curious... Yang starts with 5 Str and 11 Agility, but comes with the Agility Ring. If he were to come with a Strength Ring he would have a x2 damage multiplier, was this intended? I made it out of My. Hobbs and onto Fabul!

Wind Rock? Wind... Crystal from the Chocobo Forest? I'll try to remember these things...

Oh! A lot more people can use a Boomerang now, neat. A Zen staff, eh? I was not expecting this for Yang, but it's a wonderful touch!

Wow. The Zen Staff gives +5 to all of Yang's stats! That's quite an upgrade!

"You defeated MomBomb? I'm impressed!" Yeah, so am I, truthfully...

Ah yes, a Grenade is what I always keep next to my bed as well.

Well, I would complain that Yang left his Claws at home... but a Lava Claw doesn't seem like it would have been too useful against MomBomb.

Was that desk always there in Yang's home? If not, a nice touch to show that he's also a bit scholarly. I did notice the Left Tower lost a lot of its goods though.

Hmm, after raiding Fabul I have roughly 1300 GP... there's no guarantee I can buy Boomerang's elsewhere and it may be useful for Palom down the line. Eh, I'll buy it. It raises Agility and Strength by 3, that is a major point of consideration.

Let's see what the Fabul Siege has to offer...

Boomerang casts Aero?! Well, that's... neat!

So! The Zen Staff is this game's version of the Avenger? I cannot say I was expecting that! That explains the stat boosts then.

Well, Yang's a beast and made the entire Siege of Fabul a relative joke.

...More Grenades in places dealing with the King, I can't help but think this is intentional, haha.

"WWind will restore a third of current HP. This ain't Final Fantasy 7!" Haha!

That's odd... did the wounded guards lines changes from "G-...Golbez...!" To "We'll be fine"?

I have to say, its odd for the White Mage to think about aliens healing bodies after an attack. You'd think her main concern would be on her patients and not idle musing. However that thought might make more sense prior to the attack.

I am glad you kept the Shadow/Darkness/Black Sword line from the original translation and managed to implement each in a way that made sense for their nomenclature. I felt that was more thematically appropriate than Shadow/Darkness/Deathbringer. And the armor lines of Shadow/Hades/Demon.

An odd reference to Ogopogo this early, but I guess since we are about to meet Leviathan it's not too out of left field.

Everyone is stripped so time to head off to Mysidia. That will do for this edit though.

EDIT:

"Wise will increase your Black Magic Power while Hope will reduce enemy Black Magic Power!" What a smart idea on how to make Cry useful it also works so well thematically to have the Twins use the opposite effects for their special command.

Mysidia was changed significantly in terms of dialogue and many of the more unique events were removed (likely used elsewhere, I assume). Wasn't expecting the thanks to romhacking.net sign in the bar to start playing Zeromus' theme.

Crystal Shards? Ah! So those elemental rocks were Crystal Shards, I guess each one found in a Chocobo Forest corresponds with the kingdom it belongs to? Which means that Mysidia's Chocobo Forest might have the Water Crystal Shard then.

I like the reference to Tellah there, since he did come from Mysidia. But... wasn't Tellah Mysidia's most gifted Sage?

"Miracle, though proven to exist, is impossible to learn..." Hmm...

A world where Palom and Porom are only one level lower than Cecil in joining, haha.

Oh, both the kids can equip the Boomerang. Nice to know.

Scan monsters on Mt. Ordeals... gotcha.

"Life3 is less a spell than a long, involved ritual." Uh... okay? That gives me slight hope it may be about reviving the dead somehow, unless that was a comment on its cast time.

Whoa! The Black Sword *casts* Death?!

Looks like I was right about the Water Crystal Shard being on the Mysidian continent. I wonder what they're used for...

So Liliths are susceptible to Death, an interesting change.

Wow, the Adept Helm gives +5 to all stats as well?

Lich Gauntlets, I'll be sure to hold onto those.

Now that Tellah has gained a few levels his MP has skyrocketed! He can actually use some of his MP regularly without worry of running out.

Alright, let's see how difficult Scarmiglione will be then...

Ah, I handled this poorly. I think I see the way its meant to be done. His trick of reviving his allies is pretty neat and his Weak counter makes it a bad idea to use multi attacks for a while. I think I see the way he is meant to be handled though.

Well that was an interesting fight. I managed to use Tellah with the Heat Rod to slowly remove the Ghasts while I slowly powered up Palom with Wise and lowered Scarmiglione's magic attack with Hope (wonderful use of their abilities by the way!) Though Bio-2 really took me for a spin. The much lower MP means the extra 60 damage tick hurts a lot and keeping the mages up during that part is rather tricky to balance. In time though I managed to use a Fire-2, Ether, Fire-2 to take out Scarmiglione. Our levels were 12 Cecil, 12 Tellah, 11 Palom, 11 Porom. I'd noticed if I waited one more level, Palom would have had enough MP to use Fire-2 twice without an Ether, but ah well. I noticed the Ghasts could Paralyze, was that an FFI reference?

And of course the next fight Palom levels up, haha.


Well... I forgot to switch formation, and if you do that, you die instantly. Granted it seems he's killing one person all the same with Fire3.

So Milon-Z is an interesting fight. A similar strategy to the first is required. Break his Magic Attack and Bluff Palom to the moon. His Fire3 will always kill someone, but his Drain and Ice-2 quickly becomes manageable. Use the Shadow Sword to keep Image up to avoid his instant death physical and you're set. Once the stage is prepared two Fire-2's is enough to take him out, even with his White Wind healing spell. All in all an excellent boss fight that takes real strategy to win. The set of Milon battles were terrific.

Let's save before it turns out the Dark Knight battle puzzle has changed (as I did for my hack).

I must say it was so strange to have Dark Knight Cecil for the vast majority of the game so far play support. His physical attacks are occasionally useful, but his utility of a Blink-setter was too useful to ever really have him give up that role for long. It was neat to switch between the swords as the occasion demanded and this may be the first time in an FFIV hack where I am hesitant to give up the Dark Swords due to their abilities.

Ah, no puzzle boss fight. Alright! Well Cecil is a Paladin now!

Paladin Cecil's stats are looking great for Level 1! So it seems that the Legend Sword casts Shell when used? That is important to remember.

And made it out of Mt. Ordeals. Paladin Cecil is Level 6, far cry from the normal Level 20 he is on the return trip, hehe.

Light? When did Paladin Cecil learn that? A Will based power spell assume, ala Holy?

Ah, the Boomerang is the gift that keeps on giving. 1250 GP well spent.

Ah, I like that you referenced the Legend Sword's DS name "Mythgraven Blade".

"My grandfather was a sage for your government. He had a secret apartment in the castle basement." I'll keep a lookout, also nice bit of worldbuilding.

"Unlike all other black magic, Evil does not require great character, but the absence of it..." Hmm, I've been hearing a lot about the Evil spell in Mysidia and someone in Kaipo said it was located on a mountain. I guess return to Mt. Ordeals once I have Rydia back?

Alright, back to Baron it is. I'll take a quick tour of the town, head to Mist, get Yang then call it there for now.

"Some Paladin Spells can be missed!" Excuse me...!? I guess, I'll keep a close eye out...

"Sylphs respect character, I bet they'll know some Paladin magic." Okay, I'll bear that in mind.

Vox Helm, will block Mute, likely... ManaSilk, hmm, Ramuh Ring?! I guess that will block or absorb Lightning damage? ManaSilk raises Wis/Wil +5, very nice.

Pug? As in FFVI's Tonberry Pug? Wow. The Ramuh Ring raises Wisdom by 10! That's enormous!

A rather nice way to hide an Elixir there... and a Megalixir to boot! Hmm, maybe I should have bought the Dancing Dagger, but 10,000 GP is quite a large amount to spend, even if there was a 5000 GP chest there.

Hah, that's curious to have the Bartender be a Caller, but another nice piece of world connection, I am curious if this will come up later...

Okay, so the Guards are weak to Lightning, Break apparently does damage now too...

Oh, you restored the beta Yang scripts, interesting. Not much of a fight, but nice all the same.

2000 GP and some Volt claws, that will come in handy for the next area for sure. Alright, that's all for now. So far I am really enjoying that unique take on FFIV's system!

EDIT: 2

Well I have another update, but I can't post it here due to the 15000 character limit (which is honestly a little silly to have), so I guess I'll wait for a response and just store the response elsewhere.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2019, 08:09:46 am by Grimoire LD »

chillyfeez

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 836
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2019, 01:19:56 pm »
Mostly posting to put in a bump to let Grimoire continue...
Me getting involved isn't necessarily lucky - it's sort of par for the course at this stage.
Grimoire getting involved, though, is most certainly lucky. Beyond being a ffiv hacking legend in his own right, a hacker looking for a playtester couldn't possibly hope for more than him. And whereas he was as much of a lurker as I am five years ago or so, he's been much more scarce lately. So the timing is fortuitous.
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

Latest Demo

8.bit.fan

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 319
    • View Profile
    • 8-bit fan's Hacking Projects
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2019, 06:22:27 pm »
Hi MGE!

Thanks for sharing the link to your hack. I'll definitely be checking this out!
And like Special said, you've got Grimoire and chillyfeez checking this out for you, you're in good hands. :)

Always great to see more hacks for FF4(and 5/6)!

Cheers! :)

8-bit fan
In the year of 200X, a super robot named Mega Man...
http://www.8bitfan.info/
FF4 Ultima Discord: https://discord.gg/4MqjwJt

Grimoire LD

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 455
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2019, 07:09:07 pm »
Thanks Chillyfeez! Life has been... busy lately. I've graduated from college and I find myself swept away to Thailand to put my teaching skills to the test. My interests have been a bit all over the place, but I find it difficult to get back into FFIV hacking due to everything I've lost. While FF4kster has been revolutionary for FFIV hacking there was so much more that could be done, alas. However I still love the game to death and look to support any hack that I have time to go through. In any case, back to the commentary...

I just noticed that the Karate Gi has 80% Magic Evasion, that is insane!
Wow, and the Zen Staff has a chance to paralyze, eh? That was a well spent 5000 GP... and it can Sleep? What can't this thing do?

A Level 14 Palom learns Death and Porom learns Berserk? Well, its not as if they're in my party for much longer so I guess it makes sense that Palom and Porom would learn powerful spells like that.

Well, you find a Dancing Dagger in the Sewers anyhow, so no worries there. Oh, the Dancing Dagger is for Porom only? That's quite a change, but it makes sense since she has such low Strength she can only basically deal the 50 or so damage... unless you give her the Strength Ring or the Adept Helm which could increase her abilities from x2 to x3 50 damage.

Alright, let's see what Baigan is worth...

Starts off by killing Porom with a normal attack, wonderful. Proceeds to kill Tellah. And massacred... alright then.

Well, it took a couple of tries, but it basically became a matter of surviving and hoping the Zen Staff wielding Yang would eventually find his mark, which he did. I also got a lucky Comet early in the battle which hurt the left arm significantly and the body eventually crumbled to repeat hits from Yang, all while I tried to keep my head above water with potions and the like. Tellah and Porom went down and it was difficult to bring either back up. I also cast Blink where I could to keep Palom and Yang safe-ish. dealing with the elemental magic never got easier for those two. I could swap shields with Cecil though when I knew the patterns and counters.

Gold Armor for exploring eh? Sure, I'll take it.

Ah, so Dancing Dagger now charms the foe if it can, I guess that's why only ladies can equip it now.

Alright, so let's take on Cagnazzo!

So... I hit him with Lit to prevent Drown, he used Drown anyway and everyone was hit for over 250+ damage of their less than 120 Max HP, after I had used Hope on him, hrmm... It may be a damage race since BigWave can also use HP to decide its damage.

Oh, I guess I just hit him too late last time and he was already starting the Drown sequence.

Alright, I just let Zen Yang deal with a lot of it, I managed to keep everyone up. Cecil used the Legend Sword to cast Shell on various party members while Porom and Tellah got Slow on Cagnazzo which worked very well, it gave me ample time to get to Palom's turn to use the Shock Rod on him to stop Drown. Eventually he entered into his turtling phase. The first time he used Gush it hurt quite a bit, but Curse is useless to inflict from thereon out since it only effects physical atk/def rather than magical and since he doesn't physically attack from this point on it's a non issue. It took me a while to realize he was basically immune to all damage until he re-emerged. With that in mind I used Wise and Hope a good number of times and when he next came out I hit him with a boosted Lit-2 from Palom to end it.

Whoa, Cecil is learning spells for defeating the Four Fiends, neat!

Ah, so the Caller just tells you about the Pug summon from Rydia's house, ah well.

"Crystal Balls are like Shields for casters" Oh, good addition!

Well let's check out Silvera...
"Your armor looks heavy. Try our Mythril mail!" Finally! A hack remembers that Mythril is supposed to be weightless.

Hmm, if the Mythril Mail is weightless then I assume the Mythril Staff is as well?

Ah, so here is where the Bomb Summon is being sold. I will have to remember that before I leave the Overworld.

"Chocobos and Slimes are friends!" What...? I remember something about Chocobo Gauntlets earlier... is that a hint to it?

Ah, so Dragons have Adamant, I will remember that.

Nice Chrono Trigger reference in Professor Kory's home.

"A paladin? How quaint." Wha...? That's kind of a strange thing for a normal child to say, he did mention a Bless spell though, I guess I should look out for it.

Agart Axe? A nice bit of worldbuilding and it backs up what the guy said about Agart using Dwarven technology.

"The Earth Hammer was lost during a bloody war between Eblan and Agart!" Hmm, some interesting history there, not quite canon but it is neat to see the Earth Hammer mentioned in a town of Dwarven descendants.

Hmm, some mention of crashed alien ships closeby Agart... how curious, I wonder what that's referring to then.

Let's try to raid Eblan then...

Ah, very good! You put in enemies. I did the same for my hack to assure you can't just waltz in at any level.

Hmm, Dark Crystal in the Island Chocobo Forest and the Fire Crystal in the Lower Troia Chocobo Forest, I guess it couldn't be helped since Damcyan proper doesn't have a Chocobo Forest. Well, that leaves only the Earth Crystal Shard.

I almost forgot to read the new Baron Castle scripts!
It seems some NPC's are giving me hints to the order of using the Crystals, I should record those.

"Dragoons are elementalists." Um... I assume that means that Kain's weaponry will encompass the elements then.

I can't say I recall two officers standing by the throne who don't say anything, maybe I'm just forgetting.

Wait a second... "Black magic grows naturally from tormented hearts." "Heart of black" "Devoid of just character" "The Evil spell is a force of nature." Am I getting Golbez at some point?!

"Flash will grow stronger..." I wonder if its using the Counter formula then.

Ah, found the hidden room in the castle. Life Staff and Seraphim Ring, eh? Some good treasures, for sure! Life Staff raises Will by +15! Rather great for this point. And the Seraphim Ring increases Will +10, not a bad choice.

Onto Troia then...

Chocobo Eggs, something called Zaio that attracts Chocobo, hmm... I do like that when you talk to the fellow the music changes to the Chocobo theme, cute touch. "Chocobos and Crystals are spiritually linked." I guess that's why I've found the Crystal Shards in Chocobo Forests then.

Hmm! Giving something to the Black Chocobos at the farm?! I guess this might be that Zaio thing that was discussed earlier.

WarMech, eh? Glad to see another reference to FFI, I wonder when I can run into that then.

"Check out Kil6969's video on this room!" That might be the weirdest line I've read in a hack thus far. How ARG like, alright let's see what its about. Ah right, I recall this. It's referring to the NPC's you can't quite reach.

Well, since I don't have the Pass I can't reach the Troia dancers and the lady who normally sells it now sells other things...

Alright, with the Frog's hint I think I have the Chrono Cro- the Crystal Shards in the right order.

Hmm, aside from the Lit Shield those were disappointing treasures, but I guess that makes sense.

And I think I will call it here for now, I'm all set to go to the Lodestone Cavern and I'll make sure to comment about that next time.

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2019, 08:00:37 pm »
Man, so much feedback!  I'm ECSTATIC!  I'm going to sift through and reply to everything, take notes and hopefully make changes.  Stand by.

THANK YOU SO MUCH to everyone in this thread.  You're all legends; I'm honored you're taking the time to help me, especially Grimoire!

Alright-  let's get to work...

July 29, 2019, 08:45:37 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)

So, I see FloatEye's are now ParaEye's, an interesting introduction to the new foes... I also see that Cecil begins with 10 HP, I hope that's intended... The Raven or Zuu is called Aquila now, perhaps water based? I am interested to see where that goes.

This is just for the intro; as you most definitely know, the monsters in the intro are their own entries in the monster table.  I just wanted to spice them up, make them something unique.  Aquila is a vague reference to other Final Fantasies and ParaEye just sounded cool.

Shadow Sword, Iron equipment and Strength Ring? Level 1, 2 (natural) Str, 2 Agi, 2 Vit, 0 Wis, 0 Wil, 10 HP... Poor Cecil has seen better days!

Indeed lol.  As is mentioned in the training room, everything has been scaled back (especially apparent at the beginning) to use the full range of damage available later.  Hitting for 9999 is pretty easy in vanilla FF4; in this hack, it's very, very difficult.  As such, monsters with 65000 health are a big deal.

The Shadow Sword gives 3 Atk at 95% accuracy, this should be a curious start.

I hate misses, unless they're a large part of weaponry.  There are weapons with low miss rates, but outlying statistical RNG misses especially at critical moments don't sit too well with me.  As such, most weaponry has been bumped up to hit a lot more easily, but correspondingly the damage isn't as large as a ration of how many average hits it takes to kill an area-relevant monster.  Caster weapons hit a lot better now and they're Long Range so as to not totally be gimped by casters being in the back row (where they almost always are).



"Scan will work on most bosses, but may not tell the whole story", oh fun! I like the new text from the mages, even with a hint at a new spell in Life3.


This is more of me not having enough programming knowledge to deal directly with the code, a recurring theme you'll find in this hack lol.  What this means is most bosses and enemies' health isn't "get health to 0 and they die"; for example, MomBomb has gobs of health, but once you've gotten her to a certain milestone, she blows up just like in vanilla.  It would be possible to clean this up, but it was low on my list of priorities.

"Mysidia practices both Black and White magic but truly excels at White." Huh? Is this implying that Palom may not be as useful when you get him?

This is a very vague reference to something that will happen later.  I may clean this up a little to be more obvious.


First person in Baron mentions that dancers hold the key to great power... I'm always glad to see hacks that do more with these events.

Very important to talk to all the dancers, including before and after key story events when their dances "change".  This is going to be made more obvious.  Goes in my notes!

I'm... not sure the child in the inn breaking the fourth wall and mentioning alcohol was such a good idea. The ad for Brave New World is nice though.

So, originally, all bulletins in Inns/Pubs were going to break the 4th wall with references to the hacking community.  One of my very good friends and I have a beer night every month where we fire up Final Fantasy hacks on a Raspberry Pi.  This was a nod to him.  I may take it out, I agree a child talking about alcohol isn't very nice.


I liked Cid's reference to FFVII, cute touch. Also his daughter contradicts what the guard said "Use your GP and Items, its what they're there for." While she says to save GP. The changed books are good, have some useful info. for newcomers. Onto the Training Hall then.

Noted, I'll change that.  Cid's daughter's dialogue is a direct reference to Chrono Trigger (many such references are in this hack) where the 2300 A.D. shopkeeper states, "Save your money, it'll do you good, that's my motto."

I like this new Equipment system where each slot is meant to guard or enhance a specific attribute. So most weapons now have weapon spells, hmm?

Just about.  It was a way to stretch the early game combat options without handing the player permanent solutions.  Blink, Sleep and Death are *very* powerful spells but are only available during certain intended windows until later when the player deserves the right to cast them without dedicating an equipment slot (or after Cecil becomes a Paladin and loses access to them).


Rare steals? Does that mean you implemented an alternative steal system different from the original game?

If memory serves, Edge now steals the Mythic Rare item when stealing...  I might be wrong though, it's been a while since I changed that.

Was not expecting to find a Megalixir at game start!

This is a reference to FF6's Clock elixirs.  Megalixers are *very* powerful in this game and there is no way to get more of them once they're gone.  (Can't buy, steal or win them later).  As such, every town *should* have a Megalixer hidden somewhere (I may have forgotten one...  I'll have to double check).


It will take some time to get used to this battle system. I am so used to decent numbers at the start. So far of the handful of battles I've fought it seems to work well.

Yeah, at the beginning it's more reminiscent of Super Mario RPG battle numbers.  They quickly climb.


In the Chocobo Forest I found a Light Stone, I'm curious to see what that will do.

This is part of a bonus side quest.  At present, I don't know how to make all of them non-use outside of combat and inside of combat.  Some are usable, some are considered key items while others are not...  This needs to be fixed.  BUT the quest does work, provided you don't use them accidentally.


And made it to Misty Cave, I ran into an encounter with two StingRats and one actually landed Sting. I was going to originally comment that it never seems to hit, but its low accuracy has a reason, it will kill the target at this point. I'll post more when I make it to the Mist Dragon.

The original intention was that bosses are "bottlenecks" but each area has a spectrum of difficulty for the common enemies.  For example, in the Baron area, from levels 1-3, StingRats are very dangerous.  But for a level 4 Kain and Cecil, definitely defeatable, and they drop Life potions (a valuable commodity at the start).  I'm not sure this concept was implemented well game wide.


July 29, 2019, 09:02:28 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
Lots more to say, but the forum wants to "auto merge" my comments?

When can I post a new reply lol?
« Last Edit: July 29, 2019, 11:52:17 pm by MGE »

chillyfeez

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 836
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2019, 09:28:26 pm »
Either seven days, or when someone else comments.

... Go!
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

Latest Demo

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2019, 10:21:21 pm »

I seem to be getting a large number of 2 StingRat and 2 Imp fights again and again in Mist Cave. Sure there was one fight with Larva, but 1 out of... 8 or so. Maybe it's just odd RNG. In any event I noticed that 2 chests were also removed from the Mist Cave.

Some formations have been increased in frequency, others decreased.  The chests were removed because a) I couldn't think of anything but consumables to put in them and b) to save on memory.  I ran out of memory in almost every category of editable things lol.  I found myself looking through lists of chests and eliminating some of the less valuable ones, especially at the start.


The Mist Dragon was... interesting. I got a lucky crit at the start, dealing 20 damage or so, but beyond that I could only deal 1/2 no matter what I used. Maybe I should have used a Molotov, but I didn't want to waste it. It seems I was at just the right level (level 4) as Ice-1 was dealing just below my max HP and I could recover with the Tonics I bought and the Lifes I was winning from the Imps on the way there.

Very intentional.  The RNG crit was lucky, but the fight strategy I typically use is:  Cecil back row, Kain back row, swap their rings (Kain +STR, Cecil +AGI); Cecil doesn't attack, just there to heal Kain, and he typically dies to Ice-1 anyway.  Kain can indefinitely Jump being hit for just 1 by Mist D. and escaping the Ice-1 spell each time, if you time the Jump correctly.  The crit can trivialize the fight a bit, but I didn't want to remove the GOOD RNG that can happen, only the rather annoying stuff.


I noticed that you changed Kain's early Will gains to 0, haha, fair enough. It seemed odd that he had such high Will in the original game, but was mind-controlled several times, but I assume that's because he was supposed to have White Magic at one point.

This was an attempt to make Kain susceptible to magic attacks without gimping his WIS.  Kain is meant to have a variety of physical damage mitigation, but little magic damage mitigation.


As far as I could tell there was nothing around Baron or in the Mist Cave that could blind me. I never ran into the moths that would normally do so. Next edit will cover up through to OctoMamm.
The rare Moths can; it was lucky you never ran into them.

« Last Edit: July 30, 2019, 12:04:12 am by MGE »

chillyfeez

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 836
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2019, 10:37:57 pm »
Oh, so I went back and looked at what I had done with equipment dumping in the PHS hack.

The bad news: I don't seem to have ANY notes, so making a patch that will specifically dump equipment into the fat chocobo's storage would require more time than I have to give at the moment.
The good news: I have a patch already made that would add automatic equipment dumping into the normal inventory.  Specifically, when a character leaves the party, the patch automatically opens the "choose what to keep" screen, giving the player the option to keep any of the departing character's equipment they choose (as long as there is enough space in inventory). The screen opens seamlessly in the middle of whatever event is running at the time. Theoretically, you could apply this patch along with the "change to cache" patch that's included with User Options if you're concerned about the impact this would have on inventory space, but that's up to you.

This patch should be applied to an UNHEADERED ROM, and I would recommend creating a backup file, as I can't guarantee this won't conflict with anything else that's already been done to your hack.
If you do experience a conflict, though, let me know. I may be able to rearrange some things to make it compatible if necessary.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Wic6xDIcq_IBibmnILNWcpC5c8Yr1no6
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

Latest Demo

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #14 on: July 29, 2019, 11:33:53 pm »
EDIT 3: I like the kid outside of Kaipo who will sell you Tonics before you go to fight the Baron Soldiers, excellent way to avoid softlocks.

Exactly.


Getting past the Officer's Fire 1 is difficult. I guess I should buy some more Tonics...

Phew, took a couple of attempts but I managed to beat the Officer, really it just comes down to getting to the front after defeating the Soldiers, casting Blink, and healing after each attack. Not too complicated, a bit long though, maybe I missed an easier solution.

Exactly how I do it.  Back Row -> Blink -> slay the soldiers -> front row -> Keep Blink up -> Hit, Heal, Repeat


Whoa, nice rewards for victory. Strength Ring, Vitae Gauntlets (I assume something with Stamina), and a couple of Tonics.

Vitae gauntlets protect against "Humanoid" physical attacks; they are a racial gauntlet.  However, all the gauntlets grant a little stat boost to various stats to make them worthwhile outside of just racial applications.  Not as strong as Rings for single stats, but more variety.  It was great you found that; it makes the Watery Pass a lot easier.


I'm surprised to see the little girl Mage can equip an Iron Helm. So the Robe gives +3 Will, I'll have to remember that.

Though not mentioned by a training room person, helms are nearly universal.  Everyone can equip just about any helm.  They'll need to-  the caster's depend on that physical damage mitigation later.


Hmm, a slight glitch. If a character is revived outside of battle with higher Stamina (x5) than their maximum HP, they'll revive with more than their maximum HP.

Yes, not sure how to deal with that, but it appears to be simply graphical.  I made sure no one had 0 VIT so Life spells always work (there may be one exceptional character though...)


Oh, Tellah learns magic now... I can't say I expected that.

It always struck me as odd that Tellah never "progessively relearned" spells by fighting battles.


You get some nice rewards for fighting Jelly's! 3 Potions and a Life Potion is always good. And Ethers! It's best to hunt these things down!

This is a running trend; Slimes are their own race and play a significant role in a side quest later.


So the fight with OctoMamm begins, everyone is around Level 7. First thing I do is requip Cecil with the Shadow Blade so he can cast Blink on Tellah and Rydia.

Swapping equipment is how I do it, too.  Don't worry about Cecil being relegated to healer for too long; he gets his time to shine.

I see OctoMamm attacks eight times, but in the back row most of those attacks missed...


And OctoMamm was a relative joke. It went down in maybe... 5 turns. A ChocoBop did 213 damage, and a couple of Lits dealt anywhere from 50-90 damage each attack. Blind is a non-issue since that doesn't effect Magic Accuracy and we've already been warned not to physically attack. I was expecting something a bit more troublesome. I guess I avoided the worst of it by knowing what not to do.

I may have gimped him a bit much recently.  Prior he would hit for 2-4 on each hit, resulting in Tellah and Rydia being obliterated together.

This is an interested comment;  in my experience, Blind DOES affect magical accuracy in this game, at least it seems to when I play.  I may be wrong, though.


Hmm, Lull enemies to sleep, alright. Restore MP with Choir, eh? "Sing will cast a special spell if the Prince is under a status effect." In the original game this is only Frog Song, was this changed then? Protect, healing, and the Dreamer Harp when used as an Item casts Sleep, it makes sense.

Indeed; the prince will cast Esuna on the entire party if he's afflicted by a status effect.  This comes into play in the AntLion fight if you choose to use it.  Not necessary, though.

Went to check out Mt. Hobbs to assure nothing game breaking happened early and ran into 2 Spirits. So it seems Spirits generally now have very high Defense, but the Cure Staff can deal with them quickly and they might have x4 weakness to Holy if the Cure Staff is considered Holy Elemental.

Ah, good catch.  It might be possible to grind quickly to a big level before Antlion.  I may change the available formations for the first floor of Mt. Hobs.


Well, since Rosa's joined the group there's no way to hide in the backrow with everyone, so Cecil needs to head to the front. Ah, the Choir Harp is Holy Elemental, I wish I had realized that some time ago...

Noted, I should reference that.  Because of dialogue limitations, there is supposed to be an accompanying "instruction manual" for this hack which tells you all the +/- stats each item gives you, who can equip them and such.  Just haven't gotten to it, since the hack needs to be completed first.


THANK YOU FOR ALL OF THIS!  I'll move on to your other comments.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2019, 12:40:11 am by MGE »

Grimoire LD

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 455
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #15 on: July 30, 2019, 12:02:00 pm »
Thank you for the detailed responses! I wish I could respond back with my own comments, but I'm a bit pressed for time (bedtime, technically)

Alright, back to it then. I don't have much time tonight, but I will try to make it through the Lodestone Cavern. (Or at least make preparations for it)

Ah, so Flash uses the 1/10 of HP healing, fair enough.

Haunted arrows, eh? I assume they can inflict Curse then. Neat.

Ah, the Mythril Staff raises Stamina by 5, that's important to remember.

So that's all six of the Crystal Shards, I'll need to keep a lookout on where to use them, oh and another Megalixir.

Hmm... Tellah has enough MP to cast Meteo now... I'm not sure that's thematically appropriate. Granted it can be argued that he dies casting Meteo because he expended his MP already into the negative since he used the 3 elemental spells and Bio, pushing him over his limit... I guess its fine.

Thank goodness the Zen Staff isn't Metal, hmm, so Ogres are weak to Ice, I guess I should have bought that Blizzard Rod then...

Osmose is still pretty fantastic! Glad to see it's not been nerfed.

So the Ice Shield and the Mechanic's Hammer are also Metallic, fair enough. I'll need to head back to Troia to get a Crossbow for Cid, I guess that explains why he has Aim. Also may as well pick up a Mythril Mail...

Wow! The Mythril Mail gives +5 Agility and Vitality, that's pretty great and well worth the price! I'll pick another one up for Cid too. That should help with his low-ish Agility.

Alright, quiver full of Razor Arrows and a Crossbow, two suits of Mythril Mail, and Cecil equipped with the Mythril Staff, hopefully we should be ready now.

Um... new effect from using the Mythril Staff doesn't quite clue me in on what it does.

Thankfully Tellah can deal with the Ogres easily enough with Ice-2.

Oh, the Mythril Staff can also put enemies to sleep, great to know!

Tellah's MP is skyrocketing now! From 90 to 105 in just one level.

Oh, Gigas Gauntlets, wonderful! +3 Strength only and resistance to Giants (Humanoids?), eh, good enough.

Mages don't seem to have much staying power. Zen Yang ends them instantly and the Mythril Staff puts them to sleep easily enough.

Icicle Claws, that might help against the x4 weak to Ice Ogres, but Tellah and the Zen Staff's effects deal with them well enough.

I just realized, I probably let Porom leave with the Boomerang and forgot to get a new one. I doubt the Boomerang counts as metallic and a number of people could equip it possibly. It would likely help out against the Bats by casting Aero if nothing else.

A GreatBow, a little late into the dungeon, but ok. Still has the +3 Str. bonus.

So let's see what the Dark Elf can do...

Morph... oh that could be bad.

Hmm, the Dark Dragon seems to like Physical attacks so I should set an Image on Tellah, since it seems he might be aiming for him. The Shell buffs I can give at the start of the fight may be helping...? It's hard to tell. I also probably should have bought an Agart Axe so that Cid could hold a Shield. I never bought an Alert Helm, so I'm susceptible to Sleep as well.

Oh right! Tellah knows Reflect now, that should deal with some of the tricks that the Dark Dragon uses.

Whew, well I managed to win. I realized that this is not a battle of sustainability. If you let the Dark Dragon last, he will gain the upper hand. You have to strike fast and hard. But be aware that you can counter his dirtiest tricks with Reflect. The Legend Sword does tremendous damage to him, upwards of 700 and Zen Yang deals a strong amount of damage when Hasted. I managed to keep the whole party up through his Demis and various tricks and eventually took him down. Another satisfying boss fight. My levels were Tellah, Cid, Yang - 18, Cecil - 16.

You have done an amazing job with these stat and role rebalances. I even found myself using Cid's Scan! I was going to complain about you not changing it, but it is actually useful for once in... ever, since Tellah and Cecil normally have something more important to do than Scan.

All in all, I enjoyed the Lodestone Cavern. It felt a little easy, but I came in well prepared and was ready for the tricks that were thrown at me.

I just noticed that you changed Tents to act as Cabins, removes a little redundancy and makes Tents that much more useful, not a bad change.

I will have to call it here I'm afraid. Early day at work tomorrow, but I'm glad I had time to get through this.

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #16 on: July 30, 2019, 12:18:48 pm »
Alright, I have responses written for the other posts, I just can't post them because of forum rules  ::) 

I felt forced to grind to deal with the MomBomb, trying to equip Agility rings to everyone did not work, nor did the Fire Shield turn the tides, moreso than just letting me survive. I was Level 9 with Rosa being Level 8 prior, now most of the party is Level 10 with Rosa being Level 9. In the grinding I got Ethereal Gauntlets, so maybe that will be useful at some point... Well, they raise Wis/Will by 3, so that's nice.

Though I did want to eliminate grueling grinds, I've found that just a small amount is actually enjoyable as a break from fast paced storyline progression.  This is just to my tastes, though.  I know some people love big grinds and others hate anything other than going straight from plot point to plot point.  Tried to strike a happy medium.

This time I will try to cast Slow as soon as it begins.

And... all but instant party wipe with Rosa, Rydia, and Yang dying just as I cast Slow, hrmm...

Well, I had a good run, I just let Yang and Rosa die after Rosa had cast Slow twice, and Edward managed to get Haste twice but even then the Burn eventually overtook Edward and it was over. It seems the strategy is to keep Rydia up at all costs, but Rydia needs the support. Also the game is not supposed to be very grind-heavy, but it seems you need to bring in a Lot of consumables if you want to stand any chance.

Well, after quite a few attempts I managed to whittle it down. I started with just getting everyone buffed, healing with Edward, Rosa, occassionally Yang and Blinking the team one by one with Cecil. I slowed MomBomb twice and got a lucky Haste with Sing, along with a bunch of Shell/Protect buffs. I then used the Frost Rod and Focus to deal some damage, but it felt as much damage as I was dealing it was nearly being healed. After quite a bit of stalling I finally got MomBomb to her limit and due to all the buffs I got the only person wiped out by Explosion was Rydia. I quickly revived her and Kicked the Bomb circle, only to be met with them casting Blaze on themselves. Thankfully I managed to cast Ice-1 on the lot, killing a couple of them and brought them down one by one. The Blink and the Shell buffs protected everyone from the damage basically. It was much easier going from there.

Indeed, MomBomb is the first serious challenge in the game.  My strategy is this:  Cecil in front row, everyone else is back.  Slow ASAP.  If you found the Fire Shield, it's on Cecil.  Yang is mostly used for Palm, but if he gets the lucky focus attack in, it's a bonus.  Cecil iterates through the party with the Shadow sword getting weakest members Blinked ASAP.  Once Rosa has applied Slow, she's free to spam Cure1.  Rydia just sort of sits tight until the party is buffed.  Chocobo is her big hitter, but she needs support (MP restores) from Edward's Harp or items from others to keep the DPS high enough to outdamage MomBomb's "heals".  At low enough level, MomBomb's explosion kills everyone but Cecil, except Edward (since this is a boss battle) is able to Hide indefinitely and should do so.  Presuming they both have Blink charges left, they can get the party on it's feet to deliver the kill to the Bomb/GrayBombs reasonably quickly.

If I may make a suggestion... Yang doesn't come with any claws equipped which makes his accuracy 50 whenever he attacks, which makes him nigh-useless in the first phase because it seems you're going to miss your Focused attacks half the time. I would suggest increasing the hitrate of unarmed since most things in this hack had their hit-rate substantially increased.

This has always been an issue; how do I increase the hit rate of Unarmed?

Hmm, how curious... Yang starts with 5 Str and 11 Agility, but comes with the Agility Ring. If he were to come with a Strength Ring he would have a x2 damage multiplier, was this intended? I made it out of My. Hobbs and onto Fabul!

Yes, intended.  I was *very* careful about letting Yang get away with too many hits, but I didn't want to keep knowledgeable players from exploiting his Hit milestones (if they know the formula).  This becomes somewhat an issue later on when his elemental claws allow him to hit for huge amounts of damage--  as such, the monsters were tuned accordingly and one should be *expected* to hit that high.  For now, that's just you being good.   :laugh:  Enjoy.

Wow. The Zen Staff gives +5 to all of Yang's stats! That's quite an upgrade!

The Zen staff is a huuuuuge weapon for Yang and will be useful throughout the game when he eventually returns, HOWEVER if the staff is just left on you may find some monsters decimate your party with counter attacks.

Well, Yang's a beast and made the entire Siege of Fabul a relative joke.
The Zen staff is very expensive, but yes it trivializes that story encounter.


Mysidia was changed significantly in terms of dialogue and many of the more unique events were removed (likely used elsewhere, I assume). Wasn't expecting the thanks to romhacking.net sign in the bar to start playing Zeromus' theme.

It's a shame that one can't hear that great song on demand anywhere but having already committed to the Zeromus fight, so it's there in all it's glory.


I like the reference to Tellah there, since he did come from Mysidia. But... wasn't Tellah Mysidia's most gifted Sage?

Indeed; did I say otherwise?  I may need to tweak that dialogue.
So Liliths are susceptible to Death, an interesting change.

This was just a small common enemy concession.  Without a glaring weakness, they're quite strong and if they get lucky and charm the right person at the right time, it's game over.  This was to ensure that a smart, curious player (who knows that Liliths aren't undead and that the Black sword will cast Death) won't have no recourse other than RNG when facing them.

Wow, the Adept Helm gives +5 to all stats as well?

Quite a great helmet, but absolutely zero defense.  Wear at your discretion.  Honestly, I typically always have it equipped somewhere.

Alright, let's see how difficult Scarmiglione will be then...

Ah, I handled this poorly. I think I see the way its meant to be done. His trick of reviving his allies is pretty neat and his Weak counter makes it a bad idea to use multi attacks for a while. I think I see the way he is meant to be handled though.

Well that was an interesting fight. I managed to use Tellah with the Heat Rod to slowly remove the Ghasts while I slowly powered up Palom with Wise and lowered Scarmiglione's magic attack with Hope (wonderful use of their abilities by the way!) Though Bio-2 really took me for a spin. The much lower MP means the extra 60 damage tick hurts a lot and keeping the mages up during that part is rather tricky to balance. In time though I managed to use a Fire-2, Ether, Fire-2 to take out Scarmiglione. Our levels were 12 Cecil, 12 Tellah, 11 Palom, 11 Porom. I'd noticed if I waited one more level, Palom would have had enough MP to use Fire-2 twice without an Ether, but ah well. I noticed the Ghasts could Paralyze, was that an FFI reference?

That is almost identical to my strategy.  Grenades and Molotovs sort of have their last real use here; hereafter, they're just too weak to be worth hanging on to.  Palom and Porom's twin buff/debuff abilities are integral to almost all boss battles they're in.  Milon 1 makes it very obviously, however future bosses, such as Baigan, hopefully require it in addition to balancing other duties simultaneously.

Let's save before it turns out the Dark Knight battle puzzle has changed (as I did for my hack).

Sadly, there's just not enough Monster script memory for me to make very short Boss scripts into large, interesting ones.  I had to pass on the more "narrative driven" boss battles, like this, Kain in Fabul and Yang in Baron.

I must say it was so strange to have Dark Knight Cecil for the vast majority of the game so far play support. His physical attacks are occasionally useful, but his utility of a Blink-setter was too useful to ever really have him give up that role for long. It was neat to switch between the swords as the occasion demanded and this may be the first time in an FFIV hack where I am hesitant to give up the Dark Swords due to their abilities.

Indeed; the implication here was that his Dark Sword, while very powerful sometimes, was impotent against true evil and thus he was relegated to simple tasks.  Don't worry about abilities...  Cecil's going to start pulling his weight in spades now.   >:D


Light? When did Paladin Cecil learn that? A Will based power spell assume, ala Holy?

Light is the first Paladin spell.  He comes with that for becoming a Paladin.  Light is, perhaps, his best Paladin spell too, as it grows with him throughout the game and is useful even at the end.  All in all, there are 13 Paladin spells to "unlock".  Paladin spells are rewards for Cecil for improving his "character"; namely, beating big bosses, going through story events, plot twists, etc.  He learns regular white magic in tandem with them, but Paladin spells are never learned through levels.  Most are unavoidable, but a few are missable!  There are some portions of the game which normal players leave 'till later.  If you want those rare Paladin spells, you should challenge those side quests early, as completing them later might mean they're not "challenging" enough for Cecil to have his character truly tested...   hehe.

Ah, I like that you referenced the Legend Sword's DS name "Mythgraven Blade".
:woot!:

"My grandfather was a sage for your government. He had a secret apartment in the castle basement." I'll keep a lookout, also nice bit of worldbuilding.

Nice catch!

"Unlike all other black magic, Evil does not require great character, but the absence of it..." Hmm, I've been hearing a lot about the Evil spell in Mysidia and someone in Kaipo said it was located on a mountain. I guess return to Mt. Ordeals once I have Rydia back?

You're on to something, but not quite and I won't spoil it.

Grimoire LD

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 455
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2019, 12:05:59 pm »
Well, I left the cave, normally I just use Exit but... that's not in the game. Walking out is actually quite interesting as you get to fight the foes at full power, instead of being restricted.

So I went to Eblan to see if I could scavenge anything. The first treasure one can access is the Earth Hammer, I really should have at least tried to look around the area the first time. Though I don't know if it counted as Metal or not.

Wha...?! The Earth Hammer raises Cid's stats by +15 all around?! That's crazy!

Agnostic Shield? That might be the wierdest name for a shield I've ever heard... Oh, it's going to kill my Will isn't it?

It raises Magic Defense by... 3? Oh! It likely mitigates Holy damage.

The Titanium Armor does give 10 more defense than the Mythril Mail, but I think I'll stick with the Mythril Mail.

Fireball Rod, hrm... I've gotten lucky so far and not had a single encounter. I've taken my treasure and left, saved, and reentered. If I ever replay the mod, I'll need to remember this can be done. +5 Wisdom, not bad.

Well, I managed to luck out and got the Ghost Spear. Charm worked well enough, but Zen Yang was just too strong and Paralyze/Sleep on the BlackCats and Lamia eventually powered through. I thought I was dead on the way back, but you can run from some encounters in Eblan, so I made it out alive.

Alright, so I did make it to the basement. The Katana is useless right now and I'm not in any crucial need of the two Megalixirs. I stand no chance against the MadOgres as of now.

Going in the main castle I ran into two MadOgres, which I did luck through with only Cid surviving with 54 HP.
I can't say I know what the Fluffy Hat protects me from.

Well I just beat a pair of BlackCats and got a Golem Ring, neat! Also its curious to see some of the Rings have the name of Summons. - Raises Strength by 10, eh? Excellent find! Let's see if it helps out Yang...
Well, the Left side of the Throne Room has a couple of healing items, I'll pick those up later...
 
The Right side however has some real items of worth! The Elven Bow, the Sealed Helm, and the Crystal Ball. A shield for Mages? I can't walk away without this! +5 to all stats, excellent.

Wow! The Sealed Helm gives +20 Magic Defense, maybe Tellah can survive a magical blow now...

Whew, second treasure run done. I ran into a MadOgre and two BlackCats on the way out and thought I was done, but Tellah pulled through with a Berserked 78 damage slap to the cat, and the Paralyze/Sleep MadOgre was fodder. Onto the Left Tower.

Right... the Staleman/Skull fight is difficult enough in Vanilla. Let's see here..
.
Well! Back then we didn't have Meteo! Moonbeam Blade? Oh, wonderful name. It raises Wisdom and Will by 15, hmm... it does give a Magic Defense multiplier basically.

Cur2All, clarifies its purpose. At first I thought the Cure-All was a renamed Unicorn's Horn. 

Another Seraphim Ring, could be useful... and the Ragnarok Ring? I wonder what that does... Whoa! 15+ Str! That's enormous!

Ninja Star and... 30000 GP! That's 1/2 of the GP I had!

Eblan has never been more fruitful. There are still a couple of strong healing items to get there, as well as whatever the three Mad Ogres are guarding... I guess I'll try for it.

Right! Cid has the Gigas Gauntlets which lets him resist the MadOgres, I might be able to do this after all...
Oh, Moonbeam is Comet, excellent...

So on my way back I got a second Gigas Gauntlet from a Staleman, if I give that to Yang my victory should be all but guaranteed. Or... not, Yang still went down pretty fast. But I reinforced Cid with a Steel Helm and Titanium Armor and he was taking very little damage from the MadOgre, and survived easily. Now I just need to make it out...

Wow, the Palidor Ring raises Agility by 15! Another massive boost. We were Level 22 - Cid, Level 21 - Yang, Level 20 - Tellah, Level 19 - Cecil.

And just one more trip needed to get that X-Potion and Megalixir in the Left stairs from the throne room... if I don't run into Sorcerers and Blademen, since the Sorcerer apparently knows Storm and the Blademen know Dark Wave.

And Eblan has been fully raided! As far as I'm aware. I made out with a bunch of excellent treasure, but I wonder if it was too excellent... while this is nice for the bold player, is there perhaps too much good stuff put in one place? I can't help but think the Palidor Ring and the Ragnarok Ring, with those incredible buffs would have been their own reward for a sidequest or something. Unless there's even better stuff waiting for me in the future.

What exactly does a Sedative do? I would guess get rid of Berserk, but I'm not really sure. Also I may want to stock up on some Invis at only 500 GP for one.

...I forgot to pick up the Earth Crystal after defeating the Dark Elf, hahaha! Well as I am now it shouldn't be too difficult to saunter back there...

After that brief intermission I can now move on.

Eh... after Eblan the Troia treasures aren't very spectacular, that's to be expected though.

Oh! I'm glad I remembered the Edward scene, now that's a creative use to encourage optional scenes, and that's partially what you meant by missable spells.

I will have to call it here for tonight. The Eblan raiding took quite a bit time to get right and lucky enough to escape. Next time I'll ascend the Tower of Zot.

chillyfeez

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 836
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #18 on: August 01, 2019, 10:50:21 am »
Btw, MGE, I think it might have gotten lost in the mix of Grimoire's playthrough and your responses, but I post a link to an equipment dump patch. It's not exactly what you were hoping for  (read the post for details), but it may be close enough for your liking.
Ongoing project: "Final Fantasy IV: A Threat From Within"

Latest Demo

MGE

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
Re: Final Fantasy IV: Born of a Dragon
« Reply #19 on: August 01, 2019, 03:39:39 pm »
Btw, MGE, I think it might have gotten lost in the mix of Grimoire's playthrough and your responses, but I post a link to an equipment dump patch. It's not exactly what you were hoping for  (read the post for details), but it may be close enough for your liking.

Oh, cool!  Yeah, I missed that post  :-[

Let me apply it and see what happens...  I'll update soon.

Welp, tried to patch and a few seconds into the game it crashes.  My hack uses *extensive* amounts of extra memory for dialogue, monster scripts, etc.  It's likely your patch previously used large sections of blank memory which my hack has made use of?

I'd love to get this working, but please don't sweat it if it's a huge load of trouble.

« Last Edit: August 01, 2019, 03:47:36 pm by MGE »