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User:Abaxa

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This is my user page. I'm a person who finds ripping games apart and figuring out where the programming breaks down to be rather fun. I have a penchant for old, obscure games.

The To-Do List

This is my to-do list in no particular order.

  • Beyond the Beyond Some music went unused and a preliminary glance over the game's item list shows what might be dummied out equipment.
  • Chaos Legion This doesn't seem to have anything else unused except maybe a couple stray TIM files and text string left in as part of the port to the PC. There is likely a debug menu based on ASCII text in the main executable but I don't have the hacking knowledge to find out if it does or how to get it running in game.
  • Dark Wizard I've already pulled some graphics and spell affects but spell labels and a thorough scouring of the game's long list of items is still on the backburner. There's a chunk of items in the plot coupons section that have no description other than name, can be sold (a big red-flag for plot coupons), and aren't listed in online guides. Due to the game's spotty translation I can't be certain until I've had a chance to run through with all four characters again.
I did dump most of the game's text although it is from RAM and there's still stuff the tables I have cannot read. Going through all that is going to take some time as there are lots of branching variables. Most of the game's graphics are not compressed and there is text for two debuggers in the game. The first has text for a character generator and stage select. It loads when New Game is selected and is partially overwritten when a character is chosen. The second exists in every town file on the disc and has commands for an event flag changer and "Hassy's Win," Hassy being one of the game's programmers.
  • Langrisser II No one seems to know just how to access Secret Scenario 4 without using the stage select cheat but I haven't eliminated all variables just yet. The description for Alhazard is definitely unused though. I also need to check the class/portrait mod codes on GSHI for any of those unused.
  • Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium No, it's not done and probably won't be for some time. I'm a hacking newbie so hacking in enemy and vehicle stuff is really slow. Map assembly is my next priority although I did some preliminary tests trying to hack the Feeve spell into enemy action lists. So far the spell performs exactly as it would for the player... by doing nothing but that enemy's "default" action. There are also some default enemy attacks to comb through. Sa Lews, for example, fires an attack animation from his fourth sphere when given a spell he doesn't usually cast, probably because the animation that would be needed isn't in memory. There's no way for Sa Lews to activate that specific sphere without hacking so there's definitely some sort of default fallback that prevents a game crash. Lashiec, as another example, uses Another Gate as his default animation but it never actually does anything.
  • Shining Force SF Central posts indicate that button codes work in the Japanese version but were dummied out later however I can't get such codes to work. There's also battle 31; a partially coded but dummied out bonus battle that cannot be accessed via the Battle Test. The data for it is still there in the ROM but trying to force the Battle Test menu to load the stage just crashes the game (savestate with the menu open, edit the value at 0x80 to $1E, reload savestate in the emulator, hit C).
  • Shining Force CD As a direct port of SF2's code there's a few things that came along for the ride like the light/dark jewel icons that got re-purposed as icons for enemy-only abilities (including new icons which cannot be seen unless the Control Enemies code is activated). I also need to replay Book 3 because last time I was in a hurry and didn't search as thoroughly as I should have for hidden items and droppables.
  • Shining Force II There's a bunch of text left over from the first game: a duplicated sprite, some unused items, spell effects like Laser which might technically be used but in an indirect manner (no enemy actually knows Laser and it does nothing as a spell on its own) and an animated tile that might be unused along with some stuff loaded into memory but not used - maybe. I know there are prototype versions floating around but I haven't looked at any of them yet. Like SF1 some debug button codes were apparently dummied out after the Japanese release.
The game has more debugging stuff based on what's in the text banks including a sound test and AI level switcher. I know SF Central has codes to get some of this stuff working but I haven't gone digging for it.
  • Space Griffon: VF-9 A ton of stuff was scrapped that still exists buried in the game's TIM archives. The North American release also apparently messed up at least one conversation by setting it to start at the wrong line. There's debug menu elements in the game but I have no idea if any debug functions remain.
  • Vandal Hearts Text for what is obviously a debug mode still exists at 0x3530 in file SLUS_004.47.