Hello there! This is a new thread of mine to replace the Help Wanted thread, which is how I got into this project in the first place:http://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php?topic=27163.0
I figured Personal Projects is a better place to put this stuff.
I won't go into a great amount of detail at this stage because you can just read what I wrote in the other thread if you're interested in the work up to this point, but here's a couple of work-in-progress screenshots from that thread for you:
Now, the latest news. I was correct in my assumption that the decompression routine in the game would work in reverse if I made some minor modifications. I did a little test.
First I started the game in MEKA and left it up to the moment the first instruction in the decompression occurs, at which point I saved the state. Then I drew an 8x8 smiley face in Tile Molester and saved it as a file, then pasted the 32 bytes of the smiley face into the save state, in the position that the compressed graphics are put by the game. Then I opened MEKA again and told it to start at the end of those 32 bytes instead of the beginning. Then I just let the routine do its work and voila, I had my XORed graphics ready for compressing.
My work wasn't done, though. I had to make the four-byte header to go along with it, but fortunately it's quite simple: it's a 32-bit binary system (little-endian) that has a 0 if the byte is zero, and a 1 if it's not zero. This was as simple as making an OpenOffice Calc spreadsheet with the corresponding 32 bytes in a row, with some simple forumlae below that would be TRUE or FALSE if it's not equal to zero. Copy the results into Textpad, remove the spaces, convert the binary to hex, attach to the beginning of my 32 bytes, and finally remove all the zero bytes. At last, my 8x8 smiley face is ready!
I pasted it into the ROM in place of part of the title screen, and loaded the game. Sure enough, my smiley face looked fine. Sure, if I knew a bit about writing programs then I could write one to automate this whole process... but whatever, this works, and it's not too much effort. I'm just glad I've figured it out. Now I need to make a pretty title screen - which is not my forte at all, if you know my work.
Anyone who wants to contribute is welcome to have a go.
So, what now? Well, I have to finish inserting all the story text that Filler translated, though I'll expand on it a little. And no, I don't need any proofreading - Filler and I are perfectly capable.
The more I get into this project, the more challenges seem to emerge... but I think the end is in sight, so I'm gonna keep going.
More news coming soon!