I am abandoning my previous project--translating Kamen Rider Club, and moving onto this-- Kamen Rider SD: The Ambition of Granshocker. It's going much better and it's overall a better game anyway.
Basically the game is something of a board game RPG. You select a team of classic Riders, select a region of Japan taken over by a Shocker commander, and travel the board getting into (relatively unique) battles, visiting shops and casinos, purchasing items and upgrades, and visiting towns and famous landmarks. The goal is to find the Shocker hideout; I assume this happens when visiting a landmark (otherwise visiting them is literally just descriptive text and would this be useless). This gets you into a pretty cool-looking side-scrolling battle (not pictured, sorry!).
The battle system is fairly unique: it's a race, with your team against the enemy's. You can choose to boost forward, break, block enemies, that sort of thing. Civilian vehicles serve as obstacles.
At the main menu you can change your team, as well as upgrade their stats, as well as your motorcycle. You can freely go in and out of each map.
I would say the game is pretty much completely playable in the state of my current progress. Most of what still needs translating-- the descriptive text I mentioned-- appears to have no bearing on the gameplay, and I plan to translate that last. There is also some NPC dialogue (useless again--join me for some tea!, etc.) that I will do super duper last because a lot of it contains unique dialect, probably to the selected region (also my Japanese is a bit crummy in places). Most items are translated but it doesn't matter as descriptions for their use is found in the manual. I do have the manual however and I plan to draft an English version of it.
I'm not sure if this is common for Famicom ROMs (in my previous post, you'll recall I haven't hacked anything since like, 2002), but many common Japanese strings are tied to two-Hexidecimal combinations. This means, for example, 7D37 would give you ここわ (kokowa, "here"). This will (and has) make fitting longer words much easier, even though I've noticed it breaks the game sometimes. I plan to implement this LAST, after dialogue and descriptive text is translated, so that's why in one of the screenshots you see, for example, BLOC instead of BLOCK.
I'm trucking away! Not bad for not having touched this stuff since I was a little kid.
As a fun bonus, I'm also translating the Gameboy Kamen Rider SD game, which is a little top-down racing game where you can kick your opponents! It's almost entirely done (it took almost no time at all); I'm just having trouble finding the dialogue before each race.
Thanks for looking