Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

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Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » June 20th, 2008, 4:36 pm

I've been meaning to do this for quite some time now, and here is a color palette hack for the Game Boy Color version of Donkey Kong Land 3 (or Donkey Kong GB: Dinky Kong & Dixie Kong as the GBC version is called). Even though the Japanese version (the only GBC version out there) was a big improvement over the original version, and at times looks better than the GBA DKC games, there were some things that were very oddly colored. Most notably, a lot of neutral-colored things were PURPLE. Ellie, Karbine (including his fireballs!), Bleak, Lurchin, the Bear Coins, Squitter's webs, and a ton of other things were purple. So the main thing I improved was fixing the sprite colors, which I'll cover in just a second. I also managed to make some other color palettes more interesting as well.

So the first thing I did is modify the sprite palettes, which are always the same throughout the entire game (if you care, these bytes are located in 0x1BE60 to 0x1BE9F in the ROM):

Image

I left a lot of the palettes alone, but the most obvious change I made was change the dark purple to gray (the sixth row). This addresses many of the purple issues I mentioned above, and a lot of things (e.g. Ellie, Sneek, Bear Coins, Squitter's webs, etc.) are now gray. Of course, some of these things are better off different colors, so I changed a few things as well. I made Karbine's fireballs orange now (red looked too weird, but I may change my mind in a later patch). I made Lurchins green to arroximate what they looked like in DKC3 (though this isn't much better... I couldn't decide on a good color for it). And I made Minky orange as well. Also, it's weird that there are TWO purple palettes, so this change makes it so that there is only one purple palette, which is assigned to some enemies like Krimp and Kuchuka.

Also, you'll notice that I changed the bottom row from crimson to brown. Most sprites assigned to this palette were barrels, which make more sense when brown. Now they're wooden as opposed to metallic. Of course, this ended up changing a couple of enemies like Booty Bird and Bounty Bass to brown, so I assigned those to the OTHER red palette... on top. I also changed the top palette very slightly to a darker red (this isn't very noticable here, but if you compare the unpatched game with the patched one, it's more noticable).

One more thing: Has anybody ever wondered why Skiddas are green in this game? Well here's the answer: When Kobble and Skidda are defeated, they share the exact same sprite (not too surprising as they're essentially the same enemy). Since they share the same sprite, they share the same color as well. Therefore, when Kobble is defeated, his color becomes that of Skidda's. So if they made Skidda purple like in DKC3, then Kobble would turn from green to purple if he was defeated, which would look odd indeed. So Rare made Skidda green so that Kobble wouldn't change color when defeated. Why this only happens in DKL3 and not DKC3, however, is a mystery to me. (Therefore, I did not change Skidda's color when hacking.)

I also changed colors for a few other sprites as well: For example, Rekoil is now orange instead of yellow.

Now, I have also changed a couple of color palettes in levels. The most notable change is the river stages -- instead of the spring look that was there originally (looking like Riverside Race in DKC3), I hacked the palette to orange, so that it looks like autumn (like Bobbing Barrel Brawl). I think I did a good enough job on this that it looks like it was officially done. (If anybody cares, the location for the River color palette is at 0x8507B to 0x850BA in the ROM.) I also changed the waterfall levels slightly and made them even better -- the brown rocks are now red! Nice crimson look. I may change it back but that's just me. (For hackers, you can find the waterfall pallette in 0x851BB-0x851FA.)

One last change: In the file selection screen, I made each file have different text colors. The top is red (as before), the middle is green, and the bottom is blue. Makes it more colorful if you ask me.

Now for some screenshots! If you want to compare the original ROM with the hacked one, you can see them here (click for a larger view):

Image

And finally, THE PATCH! You can download it in the attachment! To use the patch, there are two ways:

1. If your emulator has "soft patching" (VisualBoyAdvance has it), name the file so that it's the same as the ROM, except instead of ".gbc" or ".zip" at the end, change it to ".ips". Then, enable IPS patching (in VisualBoyAdvance, go to Options -> Emulator -> Automatic IPS Patching):

Image

2. If you have a patching program (I use Lunar IPS), you can make a copy of the original ROM and patch it. It's different for every patcher, but generally you select the ROM to patch and you apply the IPS file on it.

---------------

Now, tell me what you think of it. Is it good so far? What should I do to improve? Did I make anything worse? I'd like to know!!! I spent hours trying to figure this all out! If you want to try to hack this yourself, I'll post hexadecimal locations for colors soon (even though I already posted a few) and I'll also post how to change colors with hex values soon (thankfully, every other game that I've tried color hacking is almost the same thing, so once you figure out how to color hack this game, you can color hack other games too!)

Oh, and HAPPY PLAYING!

UPDATE 7/5/08: NEW PATCH! Click the bottom link to download it!

DKL3j.ips
Donkey Kong Land III (GBC) color hack V1.0
(300 Bytes) Downloaded 422 times

DKL3j.ips
Donkey Kong Land III (GBC) color hack V1.1
(907 Bytes) Downloaded 566 times
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Kiddy14 » June 27th, 2008, 10:12 am

I haven't had a chance of downloading it, but from your screenshots, I might tell you this:

I don't really like that brown color you gave barrels. Is hard to look, I like the red one better. Maybe you can make that brown have a little more red and a little less white? =)
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » June 27th, 2008, 1:22 pm

It didn't have any white at all... anyway, I came up with a bunch of possible designs for all these barrels. I don't really know if any of them are any good, though. What do you think?

Image

Also, the first barrel is the original one (in other words, before I hacked it), and the second one is the current one. All the others are possible ones that I might change them to. I think I may choose the fourth one or the last one.

If you think they're all bad, then you can always make your own designs and upload them. I'm better at hex-editing the colors than coming up with colors that look good.
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Kiddy14 » June 27th, 2008, 1:28 pm

The last 4 and the 4th one look like some good posibilities. We just need to check how good they fit the levels =)
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » June 28th, 2008, 4:08 pm

I chose the fourth-to-last barrel. Hehe. I also very slightly changed some other sprite colors, too, mainly making all their shadows darker so it looks better. It's not THAT noticable but it was bugging me. The brown looks slightly washed now but at least it's easy to see. I also brightened up the gray too so that it's shinier.

Here's a comparison to the original, the first hack I did, and the current one:

Image

So basically the second column is darker, and you'll notice the brightest gray color is brighter now. And the brown is much brighter. And the orange is very slightly brighter...

Here are a few of the many sprites that I changed. The first column is before I hacked it, the second column is the current hack. Some changes are very, very slight (mainly shadow tweaks and other very slight changes), while others are obvious.

Image

Also, now for some screenshots:

Image
You'll notice a lot of different things. The rocks are red (though this was already in my original hack), and Ellie and the clouds (something that is unique to DKL and DKL3) are bright gray. Maybe a little TOO bright, though... that could use some fixing, but at least it's easy to see. And the DK barrel is a light brown now.

Image
Another shot of the new DK barrel in a different location.

Image
One thing that needs fixing is the rocket barrels. It's weird with a brown flame. It's possible for me to change to red, since I can change different barrel sprites independently and not affect the other barrels.

Image
Nice shiny steel barrel. Like before, the riverbanks are orange now. Yay.

Image
When I changed the color of DK barrels, it ended up changing the color of this barrel, which is just what I wanted. Awesome!

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Slightly brighter Krimps than before. Or maybe it was fine the way it was... O_o There's a balance between being easy to see and looking good... o_O

Image
Brown Nids.

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Brown elevators (ha ha -- they were originally the same color as the steel barrels, Ellie, Bear Coins, and some other things, but I now made it so it's the same color as the barrels! XD I did it by modifying byte 0x1BEAC from 05 to 07, if anybody cares.) Also, the No Animal Sign is brown too. Awesomeness.

Image
Nice shiny Bear coins too! And notice how I made Bear brown too. However, this place could DEFINITELY use some cleaning up... I'm definitely going to fix THAT up!

I'm not going to upload the new patch yet, though -- there are still some things that I want to improve (mainly the stilt stages -- that green water is kinda ugly, I want to make it a bluish gray -- thankfully, I know how to change the color of that). As well as the factory stages (that yellow is so damn ugly) and the tree stages (the sky is too bright when compared to the SNES version of DKC3). Tomorrow, I will upload some possible ideas for how I want the stilt stages to look.

One thing, though -- why did Rare make it so that all the levels of the same kind have the same color palette? For example, I have to make all the river stages the same. I have the same gripe with DKL2 as well. The Super Game Boy version of DKL3 let you have different color palettes for each level, so why not this? DKL didn't have this issue as much either. That takes away its uniqueness...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

EDIT: So I decided to come up with ideas for what the stilt stages should look like. Currently, they have this odd green water, which I don't like. I'm thinking about changing it to blue, but I also have some other wacky ideas. I took a screenshot of the unhacked ROM and edited it several times with Photoshop for different variations. Tell me what you think...

Image
The original color palette.

Image
The same one, but the water is darker blue.

Image
A nighttime look that would make it unique (after all, you don't see it in DKC3 except for Stormy Seas, which is only in the GBA version). The planks are also grayer too.

Image
A wacky one with a purple sky, and reflecting purple water.

Image
Here I go again with orange color schemes. This one looks like the sun is about to set.

Image
A crazy one. I got this idea off of a few levels in DKC2, like Rattle Battle and Slime Climb.
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Kiddy14 » June 29th, 2008, 2:21 am

I love the second and third dock levels! =D
You're doing an awesome job, I really like this =)
It would be cool if you could change the colors to only level dependant, as if Red-Wharf had the normal colors, and Jetty Jitters had the grey sky.
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » June 29th, 2008, 6:52 am

Thanks! However, I have no idea how to make them all level dependent. I think that requires ASM (assembly) hacking, which I've never done before and have no idea how to do. So unless I ever figure it out, which I doubt, then I'll have to stick to all the levels being the same color. Oh well... I'm just going to stick with the blue water for now, since that's the most "neutral" one.

Also, when hacking the bonus stages screens, I noticed that I'm limited to a certain space in each bonus screen. It's easier to understand if you see this image I made:

Image

Basically, I can only edit stuff in the white boxes that I drew. So the text (which is inconsistent with every screen due to laziness) is outside this box. I found that anything outside the box is set to the palette on the top row of each screen. Of course, I could always move the palettes around so that the white is on the top row, and then I could simply edit each tile so that it looks right. That way I can make the text white on all the screens. Not only does it make it more consistent, but it ends up looking better, too. Of course, that Krimp in the Bash the Baddies screen could also use some work... it looks ugly right now when the two shades of purple are so close together.

And I'll come up with designs for tree stages soon... they're way too bright. But now I'll take a break, as I've been spending WAY TOO LONG doing this and need to find something else to do... O_o
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Teeth » July 5th, 2008, 8:22 am

Good job, it's a really major improvement over the original colours. :mrgreen: Would you be able to make Dixie pink and Kiddy blue? Or at least, make them both purple, as it's halway between the two?
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » July 6th, 2008, 4:38 pm

Yep, I can make Dixie pink (well, sort of, more on that later) and Kiddy blue. Yep, I can color them separately. However, the problem lies in a few things. First of all, like I mentioned before, the game is limited to eight different sprite palettes which are the same throughout the game. One of them is purple, which is for some things like Krimps. Out of these color palettes, Dixie is closest to this purple, and if I make her pink, then Krimp and everything else that is purple will be pink too.

Also, Dixie and Kiddy look a bit awkward when I recolor them, but maybe it's because I'm too used to their original colors. Here is what they look like when I assign them to a different sprite palette:

Image Image

By the way, here's what Kiddy would look like when he's green (after all, the COLOR code in DKC3 rocks, so I wanted to see what he'd look like when he's green here):

Image

Also, like I said, I was going to improve some screens, such as the bonus screens, and the title screen (click for bigger view):

Image

The first column is the original color palettes, the second column is what I have now (the text is now white, and the Krimp looks better... also, Dixie is more purple than pink because she looks better that way in my opinion). The third is another idea of what I could do as well (a reference to the COLOR code in DKC3, where it turns Kiddy green -- by the way, even when you use the COLOR code, Kiddy's clothes remain blue in the bonus screens for some odd reason).

Also, another change I made since then was making the gray a bit darker, as my previous change made some things too shiny (Ellie, Sneeks, clouds to name a few, see above). So it looks more normal now, but I didn't think it was enough to warrant making tons of screenshots about them.

By the way, here's another possible redesign for river stages -- SNOW! I decided to keep the autumn one for now, though, mainly because there are already snow stages, but here's a screenshot of it anyway. Because snow is so pretty.

Image

And finally, I uploaded my new and improved patch. It's in the attachment of this post, and you can also find it in the first post as well. Read the instructions in the first post if you want to know how to apply patches.

And by the way, so far, I left Kiddy and Dixie's colors alone so far (except in the title/bonus screens). And I kept the orange river colors like I had before. Hehe.
Attachments
DKL3j.ips
Donkey Kong Land III (GBC) color hack V1.1
(907 Bytes) Downloaded 359 times
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » November 5th, 2008, 2:07 pm

Well... I have my new patch up! I haven't worked on this in a while because nobody seemed interested in this, so I spent my time hacking some other games for a while... anyway, I made a few changes to this patch.

- I tweaked the gray sprites AGAIN (to make them less shiny)
- I made Sheepy Shop looks slightly different... the "Teleport" sign looks a bit better, and barrels are brown instead of reddish purple.
- I made a slight improvement to the river stages to remove some annoying artifacts around the logs.
- I totally revamped the colors for most of the maps... see for yourself, a lot of them look awesome! I didn't change the Northern Kremisphere or Cape Codswallop ones, because they're the first ones in the game, but I changed the other ones.
- In the title screen, and all three bonus stage screens, I made Kiddy have green clothes, like the COLOR code in DKC3.
- In the Time Attack screen, the times are in gold with a red shadow now instead of plain white with a plain gray shadow.

I'll post screenshots soon... I don't have time to do that right now... sorry...

Here's the new patch below! I hope people like it...
DKL3j.ips
Donkey Kong Land III (GBC) color hack V1.2
(1.25 KiB) Downloaded 395 times
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Gaz » April 1st, 2012, 7:00 am

Sorry for bumping, but I noticed something you forgot. You forgot to make the Nintendo logo coloured blue. In Japan, Nintendo's old logo is blue. So I corrected it:

Donkey Kong GB 3 Colour Hack 2.png
Correction
Donkey Kong GB 3 Colour Hack 2.png (3.11 KiB) Viewed 13387 times



EDIT: I corrected the colour palette for Koco. It can be seen here;
Donkey Kong GB 3 Colour Hack V1.3_01.png
Koco's colour palette correction.
Donkey Kong GB 3 Colour Hack V1.3_01.png (4.95 KiB) Viewed 13082 times
. Blaziken257 gave me permission to help on this ROM. You can even ask him for proof.
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color hack!

Postby Blaziken257 » July 8th, 2012, 12:44 pm

One problem with editing Koco's palette is that the entire game uses a whopping eight sprite palettes that never change. So, changing Koco's palette is going to change loads of other sprites too. That problem also affects Dixie's and Kiddy's sprites, too, unfortunately. The only real way around this is to do assembly hacking so that you can have more than eight palettes (maybe the palettes can change based on the level, or maybe they can change based on the enemies that are on the screen at any given time -- the DKC games do the latter, which is why there are occasional color palette glitches in those games (like the golden boom box, etc.)). Unfortunately, that is difficult to do (although likely possible if you have lots of patience and assembly knowledge, which I only sorta have).

That change would be OK if that problem didn't exist, though. (And yes, you have my permission to work on this...)
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Re: Here it is: The Donkey Kong Land 3 (GBC version) color h

Postby Gaz » July 8th, 2012, 1:57 pm

Right. I'll revert it. My bad.

Here's the latest download (Version 1.2.5):
Donkey Kong GB 3 Colour Hack V1.2.5.ips
(1.22 KiB) Downloaded 377 times


CHANGES:
*Corrected spelling mistake from Dixiey to Dixie on the copyright screen (irrelevant, but still). (Wait, I did not...)
*Corrected the Nintendo logo from red to blue (blue is the Japanese colour).

Small update, but I need to know a quick guide to all colours the GBC supports and their colour codes (E.G. Red= 1F 00).
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