Modern rom-hacking guides?

Discussion in 'Computer Programming, Emulation, and Game Modding' started by Nerdtendo, Apr 14, 2017.

  1. Nerdtendo
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    Nerdtendo GBAtemp Regular

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    I tried learning how to rom hack and I didn't get much further than sprite editing before realizing that the guide I was using was outdated. Nearly all of the utilities it used didn't work on my computer and none of its guides made any sense. If someone could link me to an up to date rom hacking guide and some utilities, that would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Pacheko17
    This message by Pacheko17 has been removed from public view by Issac, Apr 14, 2017, Reason: please don't..
    Apr 14, 2017
  3. Nerdtendo
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    Nerdtendo GBAtemp Regular

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    Joke's on you. It linked me to this thread and the same thread I was using XD
     
  4. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    I wrote one and updated things as recently as last year
    http://gbatemp.net/threads/gbatemp-rom-hacking-documentation-project-new-2016-edition-out.73394/

    That said all the "old" stuff on http://www.romhacking.net/start/ still plays. If you must use another tool then adapting a guide to another tool will mean you get what is happening and that is no bad thing.

    With regards to tools not working then you might need to install the visual basic runtimes as that is the usual problem with modern windows and many tools, unless you mean a black window flashes up and closes quickly and in that case you might need to learn to use the command line.
     
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  5. Nerdtendo
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    Nerdtendo GBAtemp Regular

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    That looks great! I ended up finding a game specific guide (Earthbound), but it has a bunch of fancy, specific tools that won't do much good for other games.

    As for the programs not working, whenever I try to run the ones that romhacking.net suggests, I get a banner saying something along the lines of "Windows does not support this file". I never even make it to the command line! My theory is that it's just a version built for an older windows but I can't find an updated version anywhere.

    Does your guide teach tables well? I understand the concept of hexadecimals well enough but I couldn't understand how they played into tables and text editing.
     
  6. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Tables are not really that complex.
    The way I usually describe it is when you are kids you tend to make a "code" like A=1 B=2 C=3 and so on. For various reasons different games have their own versions of that. A table file is merely a list of that. If you want to get more complex some people have proposed more complex formats like http://transcorp.romhacking.net/scratchpad/Table File Format.txt but for the most part anything you hack will be a long list of hex numbers and what the character comes out as in UTF8 or something.

    If you meant figuring out the encoding a game uses so as to then make a table then yes, I went into some detail there and showcased many techniques and oddities from GBA and DS games.
     
  7. jDSX

    jDSX LUEicide

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    Don't mean to hikack this thread but how does one rom hack a PS1 game? How come is it "not worth it"?
     
  8. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Whoever said PS1 games were not worth it? It can be annoying and emulation is fiddly enough (the most I have to config the average 16 bit or older emulator is my controls of choice, the PS1 stuff might take a bit more, still plenty doable but people like fire and forget) that some don't look so much into it but that only means there is more out there to look at which nobody has managed to do.

    It can get a lot more complex but as a start the PS1 used a CD format and copied the standard iso9660 which means you can look at most games with... everything really. Pick an iso manipulation tool and it will probably get you somewhere. Various devs (though often Square Enix) can do things a bit differently but cross that bridge as and when. Problem is there were no scene standards in the PS1 days so if you stick to old scene releases you will have about 10 different formats in heavy rotation and many more outside it. Again though most modern general iso bothering tools can handle most things here.

    There is a common graphics format called TIM (the PS2 getting TIM2), many viewers and editors exist.

    Being a CD then many games used CD audio, though of course there are other options.

    3d is a pain on the PS1 owing to it being so different to most other things before or since, however it is still 3d in the end so meh..

    The executable format is based on ELF you might have seen in many other places, the processor is an earlier MIPS device. ARMIPS is a good assembler https://github.com/Kingcom/armips . I am not sure what we are linking for hardware specifications these days so in the absence of a more informed choice I will go with http://problemkaputt.de/psx-spx.htm

    Everything else is pretty standard ROM hacking.
     
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