KingMike's Translations
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Author:  filler [ Mon Feb 19, 2018 7:01 am ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

KingMike wrote:
filler wrote:
By the way, are you still working on Ghost Sweeper Mikami, and/or that Gameboy game related to a couple of releases we have planned for the near future?

Mikami yes I should get to doing that as I don't think it should be too much to start up again.

Aretha GB, that I recall is a fairly complex game from what I recall of the script dump I made.
It's quite some time since I looked at that, but I recall something in it making me kind of doubting, maybe doable after my experience now. I would have to look again to see what that was.
(I do recall the level-up base stats on Aretha GB is a rollercoaster. They go up and down all over, the only thing that consistently increases is HP.)
I actually did make it through about half of that Aretha script for the Gameboy. It's just kind of tedious and I feel like GB scripts are especially shorthand, so I'm a little less confidant when translating them. However, if you're still interested in it, I can finish up the script. I meant to one of these days.

Author:  KingMike [ Fri May 11, 2018 3:04 am ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

Right now I've been making a commitment to look at the handful of Game Boy games I've been playing for reading practice and hope to eventually get hacked.
(I'd like to start with a "solo" effort and get sort of a "MY" patch, get everything done hacking-wise (I guess as one person on RHDN called it "a playability patch") so then I can of course once that phase is done check on interest in an experienced person to turn out something CORRECT.
Could be a sort of interesting thing to see in comparison.)

Dragon Slayer Gaiden: just a few towns in but so far it's looking it might be alright for a first solo translation. Text is so far looking simple enough even I can mostly follow it. (from Hardcore Gaming, I believe it was said this game was a fairly generic game created solely by Epoch with the license slapped on, so I'll just expect something "okay".)

Gegege no Kitarou: well, two chapters down. This is the game I have the least expectations of being "good", but more of a curiosity as being one of the quickest Pokemon-inspired games to market (released about six months later)

Those two I think I will progress the most quickly.


Soul Getter: a little intrigued after playing through just the introductory portion of the game. This was one of the few Gideon officially dropped, so I asked if I should make my own project and he said he didn't mind.

Masakari Densetsu RPG: I think this franchise was Tonkinhouse's effort at an original manga-like creation, probably some basis on real Japanese historical figures.

Once I get more caught up on these proportionally, will probably get back to my previous Monster Maker and Jungle Wars work.

Though one project I noticed sitting around that I had a script dumper for was Lasalle Ishi no Child's Quest for Famicom which I wrote a script dumper for when I had spoken to Tomato about it but he couldn't go further than that. (as we had come to know it as "The Diaper RPG" after he played some of it on his stream as when for a time he ran a "Famicom Exorcism" program, where he played through random carts of out the 200+ he has that were sold/abandoned by their original owners to eventually end up in the hands of a wholesaler he purchased the lot from.)

Author:  MariusB [ Fri May 11, 2018 6:37 am ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

Jungle Wars could be interesting; kurisu mentioned that Jungle Wars 2 was one of the best RPGs from the early SFC period, and apparently the first game has a pretty good reputation in Japan as well. They're mostly just seem to be related by theme though, the plot of each game is likely separate from that of the other.

That Lasalle Ishi game is also pretty unique - I recall trying it out, and it does have some twists on the usual RPG formula, with the "idol" theme to it and the modern setting.

By the way, are you still working on Ginga no Sannin? Our hacker was really interested in that one, but from what I recall you had the script, so we didn't really look into it; after all, doing the same thing twice wouldn't be all that productive in the end. :)

Author:  KingMike [ Sun May 13, 2018 6:04 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

The one thing that is slightly annoying about Jungle Wars is that one character is like a Gau. He attacks consuming various fruits which RNG selects and replenishing them requires searching trees on the overworld. It requires I recall 10 inputs to search one tree, yet the save function (which has less of a need for immediate access) gets a dedicated button. I suppose maybe there was a technical concern (it seems that on the overworld, only certain font tiles are loaded, for the command menu, save menu and few lines of overworld dialogue). A small flaw.

Author:  kurisu [ Sun May 13, 2018 9:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

You must be talking about JW1; in JW2 it's a simple command to search trees, and he can also search for nuts/fruits during battle.

Author:  KingMike [ Thu May 17, 2018 7:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

I had mentioned working on a MSX2 RPG last year called Crimson (a kind of eh game but a relatively small game in text volume).
The biggest issue I had was that I couldn't find the graphics in order to add a few needed characters to the game's font.

Well, after some digging a Disassembly log made with bluemsx, I managed to find the code that initially dumps the graphics into VRAM.
And it was simple to write a decompressor.

The problem is that I don't think there's a tile editor for MSX graphics.
(and it might even depend on which of the VDP graphics modes the game is using)
This game at least in running in what is effectively a 16-color bitmap mode. (I'd imagine the VDP's tile modes use a different format. Possibly a planar format like consoles, except the bit planes cover the entire tilemap instead of a tile-by-tile plane?)
So a hack around that problem was to convert the graphics rips to Genesis, and then convert back. A bit of bugfixing left to do, but it's just about there. (I had the idea but it took quite awhile to figure out the right way to swap the Address bits so the bytes get swapped the right way.)
(at least in said bitmap mode, the graphics are stored as 4bpp linear 256 pixels (128 bytes) wide.

I probably could edit the MSX tiles directly in Tile Molestor but as great as TM is I don't want to let Java clog up my PC just so I can run it (it was a decade ago when Java was actually regularly used. I guess it's kind of like Adobe Flash, once we installed it and updated regularly. Now I haven't updated in awhile and I'm not even noticing it.)

I think I have the graphics compression and conversion programs working. Had some issue with the recompressed data not verifying matching to the ROM but it turned out to be a dumping error. Fixed and it checks out. So graphics issues should be solved.
(it seemed kind of odd that the game would have an RLE run of 0 bytes. I understand 1 is needed to encode a byte of a literal value matching the RLE keys. And that it occurred in a block I was already sketchy on made me double-check. What was bad is that the block turned out to be the ending graphics, so I'm glad I had a savestate to check it quickly. :) )

One thing I am thinking of doing is to make an optional extra patch to this game:
remember the Casey Bat from EarthBound which is very powerful but has a 3 in 4 miss rate?
Well how it would it be like to play a game where that hit rate is pretty normal?
I suspect it has to do with the enemy's DEX compared to the player, as I seem to rarely miss against weak enemies but regularly miss (at least as often as I hit) against comparative enemies. I'm thinking of making a patch to curve that down and see if it improves. Considering damage is already extremely random (and enemies have like a 7 to 3 party size advantage), I don't think reducing the miss rate is an unfair move.

Author:  selodaoc [ Sat Jun 16, 2018 9:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations


Just wondering if you ever got aroudn to translating Battle Zeque Den or Zig zag cat?

Author:  KingMike [ Fri Aug 31, 2018 5:09 am ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

Zeque: Translated but I have been terribly terribly bad at testing it up.
Zigzag: I can't recall if I ever really got far with it.

The good is that in the last month or so I made good work on Crimson.
I'm hopefully getting close to done with the assembly work needed on the game.
Graphics dumping/insertion (no tile editors for MSX as far as I'm aware of. Could possibly be a game-specific thing, seemed like tilemap modes use planar graphics where the plane is the entire tileset rather than tile-by-tile. Whereas bitmap mode, like this game uses, is 16-color linear so Tile Molestor could probably handle it, if I wanted to install Java just to run TM. So instead I had to write tools to convert the dumps to/from Genesis format as a median. The problem being that VRAM data is stored as a 256-pixel wide graphic rather than 8. So the MSX graphics don't actually even need to be a nice even height either, something I needed to account for in the reinsertion). The compression itself was really simple (that is, once I read enough about how the MSX2 works to locate the decompression routine in the ROM), it was the conversion that was the killer.
Naming screen (fortunately after spending enough time staring at a disassembly rip of the first 32K of the ROM, which seems to be where much of the interesting engine stuff is, I was able to recode this screen to trim it down to just what English needed, and free up a good amount of ROM space for much-needed ASM hacks for the rest of the work)
DTE implemented (just waiting for me to get a sample script written so I can insert an actual table over the dummy code-testing table)
VWF half-completed (the fact this game runs in bitmap mode is what makes VWF pretty reasonable to add. Why I say I half-done is how this game handles colored text: text in this game is internally drawn in white (palette color 15 or 1111) and right after it draws a letter, the game reads back the pixels it just wrote to VRAM and then switches the bits to turn those pixels into the desired alternate color) Writing the text in the first place probably works because it is using BIOS functions that I assume had to be written to draw any amount of pixels to any position, but the palette doctoring is a game function that was written to draw an even number of pixels to an even location on the screen.

This game does an effect where it draws a laser line across the screen then replaces it with text. I could go either way with fixing the laser routine to draw the correct length or just remove it entirely (why it is the last thing I care about fixing).

The other thing I have been working on is RPG Maker 2. I got the VWF font inserted, dumped the string table (my tool I route to scan for references to each string was so slow it took like 20 minutes to dump the dictionary but since it only needed to be done once, that's pretty moot).
Thing about changing the font (made by using a tool I wrote to dump/insert the font to/from a 1bpp 16x16 font) is that I had the same problem I did with RPGM1 where inserted characters sometimes disappeared, but I have now confirmed it is a reproducible WindHex bug (or at least wherever version I have running, I remember speaking on RHDN about it and we basically only have filedates to go by for identifying WindHex versions). Sorry Bongo.
That is: in the Tile Editor, making the ROM window tile height 16 and changing the tile selection size 16x16, it seems that pasting any tile in the bottom row of the ROM data window will make whatever tile was directly underneath it disappear. (that is, edit a tile on the bottom row, then scroll down one line, and the tile below the one just edited will be wiped blank). Can be worked around by scrolling the ROM window before pasting so that the tile to be pasted into is not on the bottom row.

Author:  tcaud [ Mon Sep 03, 2018 9:01 am ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

Why the choice of DTE for compression? Why compress at all, for an MSX2 title?

Author:  DoubleDvideogames [ Mon Sep 03, 2018 3:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: KingMike's Translations

Any current snes projects in the works?

I know you have done some amazing work on more obscure snes games in the past, like Dream Maze and Magna Braban.

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