1. Vague Rant

    OP Vague Rant Deceptively cute

    Aug 7, 2008
    The patch is now completed and available. See the attachments. The patching process is kind of a hassle: you need to add common-key.bin and StarbladeJP.wad to the "Starblade" directory, then run Apply Patch.bat. This will create StarbladeEN.wad in the same directory, which you can do with as you wish.

    | Starblade Virtual Console Arcade -- English Patch |
    This patch translates the Japan-only VCA release of 1991's Starblade, the
    early polygonal shooter by Namco. The game was reasonably playable in
    Japanese, with some trial and error and a bit of patience, but this should
    make things a little simpler.
    NB: Nothing region-related is changed by this patch: the game is still Japan
    region. Any standard method for launching out-of-region titles should work.
    | What's been translated? |
    The game itself really doesn't need a translation; it's all fully voiced, in
    English, so this patch only affects the menu: the various settings screens,
    the tooltips, all of the popup notices ("Are you sure you want to return to
    the title screen? All progress will be lost," etc.), the instructional
    graphic, the button prompts and a massive number of error messages.
    | What wasn't translated? |
    The banner, strap screen, home menu and the digital manual are all unmodified.
    None of them are necessary for playing the game--the manual doesn't even
    bother to explain any of the menu settings anyway, so the in-game
    instructional graphic is about equally useful.
    There were a couple of lines I was never able to find a context for: in with
    all the menu strings is an apparent option called "Works" which looks like it
    must have been removed. If it ever does appear, the translations will probably
    be poor, because I didn't understand their purpose. There were also a few
    lines like "Action is missing!" that I never saw in-game, so same deal there.
    | How do I apply this patch? |
    Due to the complexities of patching a Wii WAD, this patch bundles some tools
    to extract, patch and rebuild the WAD. In theory, a patch could be made that
    altered the WAD directly, but it would be huge and include most of the game's
    assets due to the patcher seeing the newly encrypted file as completely
    different to the original.
    However, not everything can be included here, so there's also a couple of
    files you need to add to the "Starblade" directory:
     - common-key.bin
     - an unmodified, regulation Starblade v257 WAD, renamed to "StarbladeJP.wad".
       According to No-Intro, it should have the following specifications:
         File:   Star Blade (Japan) (v257) (Arcade) (Virtual Console).wad
         Size:   18528512
         CRC32:  DA0559AD
         MD5:    DB62A9800550B8173BF5863A3FC13297
         SHA-1:  41DD1D161D47F89C0F5F94AFD58023C9492BD95A
    Don't ask me where to find them.
    Place both of these files in the "Starblade" directory, remembering to rename
    your Japanese WAD to "StarbladeJP.wad". Then, launch the following batch file:
         Apply Patch.bat
    This will do some behind the scenes grunt-work that will result in a new file
    in the "Starblade" directory: 
    This is your English-translated game. To play it, do whatever you usually do
    with your WADs; we're not getting into it here.
    If you want or need to perform the patch manually, e.g. because you're on a
    different OS, the details of what's going on here aren't anything too complex.
    You need to unpack the WAD so that 00000002.app is exposed. Patch this file
    with the "StarbladeENPatch.xdelta" file included here, using your xdelta
    patcher of choice. Then repack the WAD and you're done.
    | Licenses |
    This archive bundles apps from BFGR WadTools v0.39a, a GPLv2 package. Source
    for these tools can be found in the "src" directory.
    Also bundled is the xdelta3 v3.0.6 binary, a GPLv2 project with source
    available at Google Code:
       Vague Rant

    What follows is the thread as originally posted.

    I got tired of looking at all of this:


    So I did some of this:

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Starblade is an early polygonal rail shooter from Namco, predating Star Fox by several years and held by many to have inspired Nintendo and Argonaut's title. The game has been ported all over the place since its original arcade release, from Sega CD to 3DO to PSX, but the Wii Virtual Console Arcade port is unique in that it allows the game to be played like a light gun game using the Wii Remote. Have a video:

    (This video is not mine and does not depict this hack.)​

    Unfortunately, the Wii version was only released in Japan, and when I tried to play it, I got that mess of mojibake in the first shot. It was workable with some effort, but the hassle bothered me enough that I ended up translating the menu (the only things left in Japanese are the strap screen, the Home Menu and the digital manual). The translation was a simple enough job, and the game itself is all in English--with voice acting--the problem now is that I have no idea how to distribute this to anyone else who wants it. I just modified the files directly, so the TMD no longer matches my files.

    My plan was just to offer a patch from the Japanese to a translated English WAD, but due to the TMD issue, I'm not even able to pack a functioning one. I can play it as much as I like on the Wii where it's already installed, but I have no way to distribute it to anyone else who wants it. Hopefully, someone can help me get a patch out for others to (maybe) enjoy.

    Thanks for any assistance.

    EDIT: I managed to pack a functioning WAD, but the result is probably an even bigger dilemma. Because WAD contents are encrypted, even the smallest modification to a file means that it looks completely different once encrypted, so when I generate a patch I'm basically providing the entire game within the xdelta--the game ROM itself is in the same archive as the contents I translated. Short version: I don't see any convenient way to "legally" provide a patch for any WAD, since it naturally requires a bunch of irrelevant, copyrighted content be bundled.

    A possible solution would be to provide the xdelta for my modified archive only, leaving the user to do their own decrypting, before patching the file and rebuilding the WAD. This is a giant hassle though. Next solution: bundle some decrypting/encrypting tools and a batch file with the patch. Then you need to know you have the right to share someone else's tools, so bleh. I'm aware this is a peripherally interesting project, but easy WiiWare/VC patching is something that probably is worthwhile, so if I can find a setup for distributing this it'd at least be useful for others wanting to patch WADs.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by Vague Rant, Sep 4, 2015
    SaulFabre likes this.
  2. john_woo_3

    john_woo_3 Newbie

    Sep 17, 2013
    Hi Vague Rant
    Congratulation for all this work. But the patch is not anymore available for download... :-(
    I have just one question : how were you able to play starblade on your wii ? have you got a NTSC-J Wii ?
    I have the japanese WAD file, and a modded PAL Wii with homebrew channel etc.
    But each time i try to launch starblade, i only have a black screen... so frustrating !!!!
    Which options have we got to set in order to play this game ? (even on dolphin emulator ?)
    Best regards
  3. flamepanther

    flamepanther GBAtemp Regular

    Apr 16, 2011
    United States
    On North American NTSC systems, Japanese games don't give much trouble other than garbled text, even with VC and WiiWare. For some reason though, changing between PAL/NTSC for VC and WiiWare sometimes requires using *NEEK (I've never needed to do it for regular Wii games). In rare cases, you might even have to emulate a NAND from the same region as the game. I've got a couple of PAL games that won't work on my NTSC-U Wii unless I switch to UNEEK.
  4. Axelay

    Axelay Newbie

    Sep 17, 2014
    Hi :yaywii:

    I would like to try it.

    Please Update the download link

    Those menus annoy me as well =)
  5. Vague Rant

    OP Vague Rant Deceptively cute

    Aug 7, 2008

    Sorry everybody, I've been meaning to rehost this patch for literally years and never got around to it. You can now find the patch bundle attached to the topic post; it should be up for as long as GBATemp is. Again, you still need to provide your own common-key.bin and StarbladeJP.wad as described in the original post.

    Again, sorry for the massive delay, hopefully somebody's still interested in running this game ('s menu) in English.
    SaulFabre, Zorg1996 and gburgue like this.
  6. SaulFabre

    SaulFabre Wii scene/hacking & Wii VC well-known guy

    Feb 6, 2019
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