Ushio & Tora: Great Demon of the Abyss (v1.0 Released!)

Started by BlackPaladin, September 03, 2021, 03:05:00 AM

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BlackPaladin

Might as well make it official.

Yes, I'm reviving my ancient "Ushio & Tora: Shinen no Daiyou" NES project.  As of now, I'm going over whatever info I can glean over the game.  When I started this 20 years ago, I didn't have any thoughts of stuff like control codes and dictionary terms, so that old patch was just... well... I don't think there's a work in the English language I can think of to describe it.

Anyway, I already typed up table files (one in English and one in Japanese) for the game as well as figured out this game's pointer system (This one is really odd.  In one aread, it's just standard pointers, another area had Setoff 4000, and another had Setoff 8000.  Also, I think there might be a pointer or two INSIDE the script itself!  Holy *CENSORED!!*

As of now, I came up with some images of some very rudimentary hacking work I've done so far.  (When it comes to the character names, those squished-looking character names are a temporary fix.  In the fighting menus, there's only room for 4-char names up there at most so Ushio in the menus will have to be displayed as "Ushi".

Small spoiler alert:  This will affect four of the six playable characters in the game.  (Two of the six's playable characters names are four chars max.)

Anyway, now for the images...






I also designed a possible new logo for the title screen... only I haven't figured out how to insert it into the game at the moment.  Here's a preliminary design...



It may go in the game in the future.  It might not.  It might need some work.  And if someone wants to help out, any help would be greatly appreciated.

A translator may have been procured as well. (crosses fingers)

I just gotta see what he/she does with the script dumps made by filler.  (Big thanks to him for dumping the game's text, BTW!)

BlackPaladin



I wanted to showcase the new title screen I worked on along with other progress I've made so far in this game.

As of now, I managed to identify almost all control codes and areas where the game's script is located, so I can insert translated text whenever that I receive it.  So that's no longer an issue.

Most monster names will have to be truncated as in the battle menus, there's room for, at most, six characters per monster name.  This means for monsters like "Hakumen", I'll have to display it as simply "Haku".

Of course, I managed to insert my shiny new title screen graphic into the ROM and simply changed the subtitle to "The Abyss of the Great Demon".  I might have to change the palette on the last three characters in the subtitle as the text there is displayed as white instead of gray.  (Only, I'm not sure if I change the palette on that area, it'll change the palette for other sprites all across the game.  Somebody clear me up on this issue, please!)

The hardest part, hacking-wise, will be changing the 16x16 text shown in-game... especially, the text shown with the spear in the background.  I'm not sure if that will require someone to work some ASM wizardry, but I'll try to work on that on my end for the time being.

Also, I still need help with the ending credits.  I have them translated, but inserting them in the game will be much harder.  That area may require someone to do some ASM wizardry or whatever hacking necessary that's beyond the scope of what I can do.

Well, that's all I have to share for now.  Thank you to the precious few who's been following my personal project!

P.S.:  In case anyone is wondering where I picked up the design for the title screen, it was from the English release on DVD/Blu-Ray and on Hulu.


aqualung

That intro screen looks GREAT! Here's looking forward to this project, this game looks quite nice for a famicom rpg. I take it it's from this system's later years.

ED: Yes, I see it was stated on the splash screen itself: 1993

Midna

Looks nice, but you have your title backwards. It should be "Great Demon of the Abyss".

BlackPaladin

picasso72:  Thank you!

aqualung:  Thank you as well!  And yes, this game was released back in 1993.

Midna:  I thought it was translated as "The Abyss of the Great Demon" or "The Great Demon's Abyss".  Anyway, I did a quick check on a spreadsheet, and seeing that it fits in just two lines, I made the change on the title screen.



This also saved me from researching pallette hacking as well, so that's a double bonus!  Thanks for the suggestion!  :D

Edit:  In case anyone was wondering, the font used in the title screen came directly from Castlevania III.  Your mileage may vary, but I like how it looks!  ^^

cccmar

Oh, this one was on my and my buddies' radar at one point, but we never did anything with it. I know the series, and it seems that this game is basically a general retelling of the old OVA/manga, of course being much more concise and less verbose. Still, the battle scenes and the music are quite cool; it seems to be one of few pretty good Famicom JRPGs left to translate at this point. Good luck to you, and if you end up needing proofreaders or testers, I'd be glad to help! :)

BlackPaladin




I thought I'd share these screenshots from my Ushio & Tora NES project.  (Which is still ongoing, BTW.)  As of now, I managed to tackle the chapter cards in-game.  They're all displayed as 16x16 text.  After performing some hexadecimal wizardry, I managed to change all four chapter cards.  However, I had to make a couple of changes.

For the three cards that would've read "First Chapter", "Second Chapter", and "Third Chapter"... I had to switch some stuff around as all three cards using the same tiles.  At first, I wanted to change them to "Chapter 1", "Chapter 2", and "Chapter 3" respectively, but the same issue came up on the right end just like the left.  Instead, I have to change all three to "Next Chapter".  As a result, the cards are read as followed...

Prologue
Ushio and Tora

Next Chapter
Touno Youkai Battlefield

Next Chapter
The Chosen Ones

Next Chapter
Hakumen no Mono

With that out of the way, what's next to be done is more beta testing on my end, changing the 16x16 text that appears when the game boots up.  (The one with the spear in the background... which I'm still in need of its translation from Japanese to English, BTW.)  Of course, there's that issue with the ending credits... but that's for MUCH later.

Edit:  I can see that the color needs to be changed in the "Prologue" card.  I just need to find the values and change them accordingly.


December 27, 2021, 12:02:24 AM - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)



Finally... I cracked the code on how to display the characters on the intro screen (with the spear).  Now that I have a translation for that area of text, I had to arrange the 16x16 tiles in two 3x8 rectangular patterns.  Inside each rectangle, I inserted the text as 8x8 characters.  To do this, I had to follow the pattern therein:

Tile 1 | Tile 3 | Tile 1 | Tile 2
---------------------------------
Tile 3 | Tile 4 | Tile 3 | Tile 4

I'm sure you get the idea.

One thing I also had to do was change the pallette on the "spear intro' as the light grey text was blending a little too well with the spear in the background.  I had to change the color to white to make it stand out more even with the spear in the background.

Now that I managed to figure that out, the only problem left to fix is the ending text and how to have it all displayed in-game.  I may need help with that one...

And yes, I did use the font from Castlevania III for the chapter cards and "spear intro".  I like how it looks with the game, but your mileage may vary.

BlackPaladin



Thanks to some ASM wizardry by phonymike (Thanks again!), the ending credits have been inserted, and the ending seems to be working as intended.  This couldn't have been possible without your skills, phonymike!

"So what's next?", some of you might be thinking?

Well... BETA TESTING!!!

First things first, I'll be beta testing the game from beginning to end (AGAIN) and then to find a lucky individual or two who can assist with testing the translation.  I'll see what happens from there when that line gets crossed.  Looks like my translation patch for "Ushio & Tora: Shin'en no Daiyou" will be released -SOON-.  (Don't ask me how soon.  I cannot predict the future.   :P)

January 09, 2022, 04:06:29 AM - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)

Beta testing on my end has concluded, and while I did see a couple of minor issues with the script (will be tweaked before release) I didn't see any major issues.  Time to ask for beta testers!     ;D

Googie

This is what I'm talking about, I'm really digging how this is coming together.  :D 8)

BlackPaladin

One more update to go with this project.  After some beta testing, bug reporting, and script refinements, the game is finally ready for release.  (Now, awaiting approval...)  It's finally released!  Hooray!!!

For anyone who might have any further questions about my game, here's the following.  (Not complete, of course...)

--Hey!  How come only the character names in the menus are showing only 4 letters?

Possibly, it's a limitation in the ROM itself.  If it can be fixed in the future, it will in a future update.

--Where did you get that title screen design?!

I lifted straight from the 2015 Ushio & Tora DVD release.  Sentai Filmworks licensed it.  I suggest checking it out.  It's really good.

--Who is this "Great Demon of the Abyss"?

You'd either have to play the game, read the manga, or watch the anime TV series to find out.

--There's some stuff missing!  Weren't characters like the "Gamin" or "Ayakashi" in the manga as well?

Yes, there is the "Gamin" head family in the manga and the "Ayakashi" as well.  Those were apparently omitted when the NES game was made.  I can only assume it was because of time restraints and/or game limitations.

--What is this "Meikai" thing in the game?

I haven't figured out what that does either.  The game doesn't tell me.  I'll revise the game patch when I figured that mystery out.

--There's a bug in this game!  I need to report it!

Well, you could contact me about it.  I'm fairly active on the RMHD.net message boards.  As for e-mail, I have set up an e-mail address specifically for my ROM Hacking projects.  You can find it in my profile.  If you want, you can use it to send me bug reports, praise, insults, monetary offerings (lol), or whatever.

--Dude, you suck!  This game patch bites!

Well, you are entitled to your own opinion.

--Are there any updates when it comes to this patch coming?

It could happen.  Nothing is written in stone.

--What did you use to make this patch in the first place?

The tools I used?  I used the following...

FCE Ultra (Hex Editor)
Mesen (Hex Editor)
Tile Player Pro (Graphic Editor
Hex Workshop (Hex Editor)
WindHex (Hex Editor)
FLips (Game Patching Program)

--And the translation?  Who did that?

Midori did the translation of the game's items, menus, title screen, "spear intro".  You should thank this person.

--And the dialogue?

For now, I had to use Google Translator (please don't hold that against me), 10ten (a Microsoft Edge addon that works like Rikaichan), and DeepL to go over the dialogue script.  Whenever I get updates on the game's dialogue, they will be added in a future patch.

--Who else worked on this patch?  Was it just you and the translator alone?

Nope, other people played some part in the game patch's creation.

filler (This person dumped the script in the first place.  He deserves many thanks for that!)

cccnar (He beta tested the heck out of the game as well.  He found a bunch of errors that I missed.  Thank him, too!)

phonymike (This kind soul helped a lot with some ASM Hacking, particularly with the ending.  *thanks again!*

Cyneprepou4uk (He gave me a little hacking help in the past.  So, thank you, too!)

Zynk, Anonymouse & Bunkai (they helped with the "spear intro")

Midori (It was mentioned already, but this one majorly helped with translating the game's menus, character names, item names, "spear intro", chapter cards, etc.  Major thanks to you!)

There are most likely others whom I forgot to thank, so if that's you... sorry for forgetting you, and thank you for helping me!

--I want to translate this game into -INSERT LANGUAGE HERE- , using your patch as a base.  Can I?

All you have to ask is ask me.  I'll most likely say "yes" if you ask me nicely.  All I ask is to give credit where credit is due.

--Do you have any notes I can follow to help with my translation?  It could really help to translate your game patch from English to -INSERT LANGUAGE HERE- .

Again, just ask me nicely.  And 11 times out of 10, I'll say "yes" and share my notes with you.

Green Jerry

I guess the translation wasn't actually ready for release, since you've requesting it to be removed.
My latest Portuguese translation: Popeye (NES)
New English translation! Gardman (NES)

Linktree

BlackPaladin

Quote from: Green Jerry on March 27, 2022, 04:06:16 PM
I guess the translation wasn't actually ready for release, since you've requesting it to be removed.

I was requesting the old release patch from 2001 which was made under "Neophyte Productions" to be removed, not the one I released today.

ponlork

I remember watching the anime of this a long time ago. Looks cool I'll definitely give it a try. Do u have a estimate on how long it'll take to complete the game?

BlackPaladin

Quote from: ponlork on March 27, 2022, 04:51:52 PM
I remember watching the anime of this a long time ago. Looks cool I'll definitely give it a try. Do u have a estimate on how long it'll take to complete the game?

I don't normally do estimates on time played because that can be subjective.  For some, it could take a long time.  For others, it could be a much shorter amount of time.  All I can say is that you'll enjoy the game you keep playing it.