Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Geno » April 22nd, 2012, 6:44 am

I'd really like an updated DKC3 Sprite viewer!
Great hacks!
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » April 22nd, 2012, 9:17 am

That's a good thing...
dkc3_spriteview2_00000.png
dkc3_spriteview2_00000.png (5.06 KiB) Viewed 25115 times
dkc3_spriteview2_00001.png
dkc3_spriteview2_00001.png (4.26 KiB) Viewed 25115 times
dkc3_spriteview2_00002.png
dkc3_spriteview2_00002.png (4.51 KiB) Viewed 25115 times
dkc3_spriteview2_00003.png
dkc3_spriteview2_00003.png (4.42 KiB) Viewed 25115 times
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Markster » April 22nd, 2012, 9:36 am

Awesome, when will this DKC3 sprite view come out?
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » April 22nd, 2012, 1:11 pm

Most likely a couple of weeks from now, when I don't have a final project and two exams hanging over my head. I would like to back-port a few of the new features of this one to the DKC1 and DKC2 sprite viewers (namely, the dual-palette functionality and the ability to view all sprites with their proper graphics; the latter of these is done with the exception of displaying the graphics locations for these sprites), and release all three updated versions simultaneously.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Markster » April 22nd, 2012, 1:16 pm

Okay then, I'll have to be patient.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Super Luigi! » April 22nd, 2012, 1:23 pm

Yep, don't mind us Mattrizzle. We don't want to rush you.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Geno » July 17th, 2012, 3:48 am

Sorry for the big bump, but
Updated DKC3 Sprite View? :(
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » July 17th, 2012, 9:19 am

geno wrote:Updated DKC3 Sprite View? :(

Here, along with the updated versions of the DKC and DKC2 Sprite Viewers.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » August 5th, 2012, 4:02 pm

Since there seems to be some demand for this, I've quickly slapped together a DKC2 Sound Test patch. This patch disables all music in the game, and hijacks the pause routine to have a Sound Test Menu.
dkc2_sound_test.png
dkc2_sound_test.png (26.41 KiB) Viewed 24927 times
Press L or R to cycle through the different music/sound banks (this takes time, as sound data and sample data have to be written to SPC RAM) Right or Left on the directional pad increments or decrements the sound value, respectively. The Y Button plays the sound effect with the selected value.

Here are what the bank values correspond to:
Code: Select all
00- None
01- Island Map
02- Main Theme
03- Swamp
04- Swanky         
05- Enchanted Wood
06- Ship Deck
07- Mine
08- Funky
09- Brambles
0A- Klubba
0B- Wasp Hive
0C- Wrinkly
0D- Lava
0E- Roller Coaster
0F- Bonus 1
10- Ship Hold
11- Fanfare
12- Ship Deck 2
13- Rescue Kong
14- Game Over
15- Big Boss 1 (Krow, Kudgel, Kreepy Krow)
16- Castle
17- Haunted
18- Select
19- Cranky
1A- Ice
1B- Jungle
1C- Lost World
1D- Rigging
1E- Credits
1F- K. Rool
20- Bonus 2 (Roller Coaster/Haunted)
21- Big Boss 2 (Kleever, King Zing)
22- Bonus 3 (Lava)
23- Bonus 4 (Ice)
24- Crocodile Isle sinks, K. Rool escapes
25- Bonus 5 (Ship Deck)


DKC2-Sound Test.ips
(2.05 KiB) Downloaded 257 times
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Gaz » August 5th, 2012, 4:03 pm

Give it up for... the genius and amazing Mattrizzle!
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Qyzbud » August 5th, 2012, 10:16 pm

Excellent, another handy utility!

You know, as you're popping out these useful and innovative patches left, right and centre, I'm beginning to picture an ultimate customisable trilogy of DKC(/2/3) hacks in the future, which contains all of the tweaks and options you're developing - all rolled into a single IPS for each game. They would essentially look and play exactly like the games we know and love, but would have subtle (but (probably) easily accessible) menus/toggles for all the features, settings and alternative modes you've been developing. I do wonder how many of your hacks are 'compatible' with one another - as in, they don't make conflicting changes to game data, etc... it could be really awesome to have a single hack for each game provide the original adventure, and so many different ways to explore and appreciate it. ;)

Inspirational stuff yet again. :)
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Markster » August 6th, 2012, 2:07 am

Mattrizzle you are the best Donkey Kong Country hacker in the world, you can even hack the 3rd game pretty well, I think you need to make a full Donkey Kong Country game hack, with custom objects, levels, etc., I bet it would be awesome.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Geno » August 6th, 2012, 9:52 pm

I fully expect someone to do a full DKC2 sound rip now.

Specifically sounds 03 ,and 55
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Simion32 » August 7th, 2012, 7:21 am

Leave this one to me. I'll get to ripping them out to files immediately (we need this for DKCLB)... ;)

Thank you, Mattrizzle!

EDIT: Thiiis could take a while to do. It's not just 7F SFX, but 7F for every single bank (duplicated or not, how the heck am I supposed to know?). :ugeek:

EDIT 2: Seems to be the same sounds but with a different set of source audio.

Mattrizzle, any insight into this?
I don't want to waste my time trying to record everything and find out I could have done things a faster way (don't worry about my recording setup, I have that covered. I'd just like to know what's going on with the SFX and whether they have the "same" sounds for each "bank").
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Geno » August 8th, 2012, 3:59 am

All I know is that the "Kremkoin Appear" sound, sounds weird on any sound bank except the "Bonus" one, and the "Swanky" one.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » March 4th, 2013, 1:35 pm

dkc-gang-plank_galleon-sunset.png
dkc-gang-plank_galleon-sunset.png (34.01 KiB) Viewed 24652 times

A custom level theme function for the Gang-Plank Galleon tileset, with a palette resembling the end of Gangplank Galley in DKC2.

I may actually have a use for this one...
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Qyzbud » March 4th, 2013, 9:21 pm

That looks beautiful, Matt.

I personally think this sunset aesthetic is a much more fitting 'end of the adventure' theme than the bright daylight look of the original Gang-Plank Galleon. I immediately noticed the Gangplank Galley palette similarities, and I think it works smashingly in this context!

Would love to see this as part of your magnificent and ever-evolving Boss Blitz. :funky:
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Raccoon Sam » March 6th, 2013, 5:32 am

Didn't want to create a new thread for this, thought this might be the most appropriate place to put this WIP...
Image
I was able to extract the path data from DKC2 as vectors! I think there's some unused paths there too..! I'm writing a technical specification as we speak.

And fantastic job, Matt! Really fits the theme. :swanky:
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Qyzbud » March 6th, 2013, 6:00 pm

Oh nice! Very cool... I don't think any of the paths in your Krem Quay image are unused, but still — awesome stuff. :swanky:

You could totally remove that image from the spoiler if you like... this development deserves exposure! :D
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » March 6th, 2013, 8:12 pm

When I was looking for data for DKC2: Brigand Barrage, I found one peculiarity in the level/world names. There's actually text for the "LOST WORLD", but you never get to see it in the game.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Raccoon Sam » March 6th, 2013, 9:41 pm

Thanks, both of you! I removed the spoiler :)
And Matt, you're right. It even has a point assigned to it in the coordinates, unless I'm mistaken.
If any of you guys have an SVG editor, here's the file so you can knock yourselves out. The first polyline is the first path in the path table and the second one after that, etc. They're all on top of each other, so you might have a hard time dismantling the spaghetti! :?
Spoiler!
Code: Select all
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
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</svg>


EDIT: Behold, all the paths overlaid to the maps I guessed they're supposed to go onto. Triangle means the beginning of a path, dot means a stop, respectively.
Spoiler!
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

Looks like I was wrong about the unused paths. Well, back to writing the spec I guess. Who knows what's next up ahead :angry:
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » March 14th, 2013, 9:24 am

Let it snow...
dkc-really_gnawty-snow-1.png
dkc-really_gnawty-snow-1.png (49.63 KiB) Viewed 24524 times
dkc-really_gnawty-snow-2.png
dkc-really_gnawty-snow-2.png (45.77 KiB) Viewed 24524 times

In order to be able to use the layer 3 snow, I had to shift the palette lines used by everything else... Fortunately, the boss lair archetype has an unused palette line.

I never understood why the GBA version added stalactites to this battle. There are clouds in the background, and none of the maps have a cave entrance where the boss level is. :huh:
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby EvangeliKong » March 16th, 2013, 2:27 am

They added those just to make boss harder and avoid all the logic, i guess some Necky dropped them or something.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Phyreburnz » March 16th, 2013, 3:19 am

Mattrizzle, that looks absolutely amazing! I LOVE how it actually matches the world type!
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Qyzbud » March 16th, 2013, 10:25 am

Mattrizzle wrote:Let it snow...


Magnificent! Looks really nice, and matches the theme of the world perfectly.

I never understood why the GBA version added stalactites to this battle. There are clouds in the background, and none of the maps have a cave entrance where the boss level is. :huh:


That's... a good point. :shock: I never noticed those clouds, and I figured the boss battles took place in caves — mainly due to them being so dark looking in otherwise (typically) well-lit environments... but it makes sense that the battles are outside, what with the piles of bananas being so visible on the world map...

I'd say there's a good chance that Rare's DKC GBA port team forgot/never knew that these 'lairs' weren't actually in caves. :roll:
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » April 7th, 2013, 2:12 pm

Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

Ever wanted to see what the DKL3 prototype would be like in color? Well, soon you will be able to! I took the Japanese version and ported the level layouts from the English prototype. I also changed the required time of Whiplash Dash to 45 seconds like it is in the prototype (it still isn't too hard to beat).

I'm not going to release this yet until it is finished, and currently there are some nasty bugs in the bonuses that are unique to this hack. I guess the bonus stages use different sprite tables from the rest of the game:

Image Image

So that will need fixing -- I'll work on it soon. I'll probably do a 103% test run of the game before releasing it, which I have also done for past DKL3 patches. There are some other things that I may or may not do:

- Add the map animations and the most recent time in Time Attack, which the English and Spanish patches currently do, since the official English versions all do this. (Maybe get Bear's animation working again, too...)
- Recreate the bug where extra live balloons freeze for a moment before popping. (Unfortunately, this may be difficult for me to do -- I'd have to figure out what causes the bug in the first place.)
- Merge this with the English patch, using the text strings that were present in the prototype (e.g. the various typos like KROOL in the cast list, and him referencing the watches when approaching him in K. Rool's Last Stand).

What do you all think?
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Gaz » April 8th, 2013, 1:01 am

Amazing! You never fail to impress, Blaziken. That DKL3 prototype might just be neglected if it weren't for you. Remember, I'm like your biggest fan Blaziken. I'm always excited for your projects and such. If I could one day experience ROM hacking to follow your footsteps... Anyways, I love it. I love the Japanese DKL3 GBC convert to English, I love the typo fixes in it, everything. Color hack from 2008. You are my favorite ROM hacker out of them all.

I can't wait for this new project. Good luck!
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » April 8th, 2013, 4:52 am

Thanks! While I do seem to get a few people more interested in DKL3, I doubt the prototype would be completely forgotten if I didn't spend my time hacking DKL3... Also, I fixed the bugs I caused in some of the bonus stages. It turns out that the bonus stages do use different sprite tables after all. Here are new screenshots:

Image Image

Now I just have to do a 103% test run and if all is well, I'll release it. Also, I forgot this in my last post, but I wonder if I should make the Time Attack data compatible with the prototype. The prototype and retail ROMs use slightly different Time Attack checksum mechanisms, so saves between the prototype and retail ROMs aren't compatible in this part of the game (without hacking). Right now, Time Attack data in this hack is compatible with the retail ROMs, but not the English prototype ROM. I can choose the former or the latter, but not both -- what do you all think?

EDIT (Apr. 15, 2013): I have finally finished the hack! Here is the download link:

http://www.mediafire.com/file/rbe6rzqr4 ... totype.zip

Enjoy playing the prototype in color! I also wonder if I should merge this with the English patch to make the text changes...
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Green beta zinger in DKC2 hacked

Postby Retrodkc » June 2nd, 2013, 4:11 pm

In another topic, someone talked about a zinger colour that belongs to a beta pallete, however, with the sdk2 editor i changed a value to restore it! look

:D
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Re: Green beta zinger in DKC2 hacked

Postby Qyzbud » June 2nd, 2013, 5:24 pm

I like the way DKC2's Zinger looks in green... nice work!

I'll embed the YouTube clip, and move this into the 'small hacks' topic. :)
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » January 19th, 2014, 8:15 am

Here's a small patch that fixes the backup file bug in the Japanese DKL3, as described here:

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1950

The patch itself is in the link below, and it is available in IPS format (for the time being):

http://www.mediafire.com/download/caodedoblb65cp2/DKL3J%20-%20Save%20backup%20fix.ips

Using this patch, if you have a corrupt save file, but working backup copies of the save file, the game will now load the working backup save file properly, as was originally intended by the developers. While this may not be needed much on an emulator, it could be helpful when playing on a real Game Boy, as cartridges are prone to data loss.

If you want to see this for yourself, open a hex editor and edit the data in offsets 0x00-0x4F (for file 1), 0x50-0x9F (for file 2), or 0xA0-0xEF (for file 3). With the patch, even after editing this data, you'll see that the save data will be what it was before you edited it (assuming that you don't mess around with the backup copies further down in the save file). Without the patch, you will see your changes to the save files when you play the game, which means that you're playing a corrupted save file.

While the bug exists in both DKL2 and DKL3, this patch will only work for the Japanese DKL3. I'll come up with separate patches for all other games eventually, and I'll eventually update the English GBC patch with this bugfix as well. (Coming up with patches for the other games will be harder, though, as all the DKL ROMs, except for the Japanese DKL3, are extremely tight on empty space, and I will likely have to expand the ROMs to be able to do this. But at least it will still be possible!)
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » March 3rd, 2015, 2:21 pm

So I downloaded Donkey Kong Land 2 on the Virtual Console the day it was released in North America (which wasn't too long ago), and I noticed a change in Lava Lagoon, Glimmer's Galleon, and Clapper's Cavern. In those levels, whenever there is any flashing going on (such as when the level is about to become completely dark in Glimmer's Galleon), it flashes noticeably more slowly on the 3DS than it does on the Game Boy. Here's a comparison in Glimmer's Galleon (it's similar in Lava Lagoon and Clapper's Cavern):

Spoiler!
Image


I know that not everybody here has a 3DS (and I don't think that everybody with a 3DS is going to play DKL2), so I decided to make a patch that replicates this change. You can find it here:
http://www.mediafire.com/download/3n6phmx2fpkbjg3/DKL2+-+Glimmer%27s+Galleon.ips ← (Old patch, only here for historical reasons)
http://www.mediafire.com/download/ub5eye7dr7q47a8/DKL2_-_3DS_VC.ips ← New patch! The previous patch only modified Glimmer's Galleon; now this one also modifies Lava Lagoon and Clapper's Cavern.

To be clear, I didn't extract the ROM from the 3DS (I don't know if that's possible); rather, I took a Game Boy version of the game and made the same change from scratch. I compared the behavior of this patch closely to the behavior I saw on the 3DS, so this should be accurate.

This should work on both the English version and the Japanese version, as the offsets for the ASM code changes are the same.

If anybody wants me to post the ASM changes I made, I can do that.

EDIT: I initially only noticed the change in Glimmer's Galleon, but I since noticed the change in Lava Lagoon and Clapper's Cavern as well. I updated the patch to reflect this. I also made a note that the patch works in both the English and Japanese versions, whereas I was previously uncertain that it worked on the Japanese version.
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Re: DKC2 Series Project

Postby Retrodkc » May 14th, 2015, 8:48 am

Donkey Kong Land 2 levels in Donkey Kong Country 2 Coming soon! 2% progress (with many features included :thumbs: )
Image
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My current DKC2 project and my earlier DKC1 project

Postby Diddyrocker39 » July 17th, 2015, 3:32 pm

I am currently working on a re-improved version of my old DKC2 hack called "Klash of the Kremlings"...I feel that my skills have improved greatly since I first begun hacking.This screenshot will tell you for certain... :nicework:
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Re: My current DKC2 project and my earlier DKC1 project

Postby JadeRose » July 17th, 2015, 5:29 pm

Duuuuuuuude, nice. It's like the Kremlings polluted the sea with radioactive gunk. Will their perverse conquests never cease???

(What's the plot for this one? Are the Kremlings in a civil war, or did stuff simply get real?)

Keep working at it. It looks really nice. I'd love to see more screenshots. ^_^
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby AneSDK » August 17th, 2015, 5:34 am

Someguy messed around with the credits after you beat King K. Rool the first time.

Here's the results:

Don't judge the spelling, english is not his primary language
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » October 25th, 2015, 1:30 pm

Here is a small hack for DKL2 and DKL3 that lets you keep the Banana Coins and Bear Coins you have collected, even after turning off the game. Normally, when you turn on either game and select a save file, your Banana/Bear Coin count resets to 0, but with this hack, the count will be whatever it was the last time you saved. This is similar to DKC3, as well as the GBA version of DKC2.

This is actually unused behavior (which was very recently discovered); when saving your game at Kong Kollege or Wrinkly Refuge, your current Banana Coin / Bear Coin count is actually saved to SRAM offset 0xA009 (file 1), 0xA059 (file 2), or 0xA0A9 (file 3). (When looking at a .sav file in a hex editor, these offsets would correspond to 0x0009, 0x0059, and 0x00A9.) And when you load a save file, this count is then written to HRAM offset 0xFFB3 (or 0xFFB2 in the Japanese version of DKL3). Sounds good so far... except that when the Krocodile Isle / Northern Kremisphere map is loaded afterwards, this byte (0xFFB2 or 0xFFB3, depending on the game) is then reset to 0, so you lose all your Banana/Bear Coins. This is part of a subroutine that sets a few bytes to 0. I am not sure if resetting your Banana/Bear Coin count to 0 was intentional or not. In any case, all this hack does is change two bytes to remove the code that resets HRAM offset 0xFFB2 or 0xFFB3 to 0.

And now for some links to some patches. Be sure to pick the right game and version!


(Now that this unused behavior was discovered in DKL2 and DKL3, I wonder if it's also unused in the SNES version of DKC2?)
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » November 4th, 2015, 2:54 pm

I've overhauled my Cranky level hint fix patch. Instead of an IPS patch, it is now an Asar ASM patch. Remaking it in this format allowed me to implement conditional statements in the patch, which means it now works on every version of DKC (except the competition cartridge, for obvious reasons)!

Download the new version here: dkc_cranky_lvlhint_fix_asm.zip

After spending some time analyzing the text, I've made a few interesting observations, most of them related to the hint for one particular level:
Image Image
Image Image
  • In the French translation (top right pic), the hint for Trick Track Trek (Trajet Toc Toc) was accidentally assigned to the incorrect world -- it appears in Gorilla Glacier (Glacier des Gorilles) instead of Kremkroc Industries Inc. (Kremkroc et Kompagnie). Given that these hints are unused anyway, it's no surprise this wasn't corrected for European version 1.1.
  • The German translation (bottom left pic) is the only one lacking a hint for Trick Track Trek (Trick Track Treck). In its place is an exclusive hint for Oil Drum Alley (Oelfaß Boulevard).
  • Not all of the languages have an equal number of hints. While English and Japanese each have 27, German is missing one for Orang-utan Gang (Gang Orangutan), and French is missing five -- Barrel Cannon Canyon (Canyon du Tonneau à Canon), Snow Barrel Blast (Bang Neigeux du Tonneau), Ice Age Alley (Allée de l'Ere Glaciaire), Croctopus Chase (Course de Kroctopus), and Elevator Antics (Ascenseurs Excentriques).

EDIT 9/9/2017: Fixed links in this post.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby VideoViking » November 4th, 2015, 5:45 pm

How does an ASM patch differ from an IPS patch? Are there other advantages to using ASM over IPS? Furthermore, is it possible to create an ASM patch?
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » November 4th, 2015, 11:14 pm

Asar is an assembler. ASM files are like source code files: they contain 65c816 code, which is the assembly language the SNES uses, and can also include comments, define statements (variables), and macros (shortcuts for sets of instructions), and conditional statements (e.g. if, else). When you run Asar, this source code is assembled into SNES machine code (binary).

In this case, I used conditionals to determine which version of DKC is being patched by checking the values of bytes in the ROM's internal header (NOT the copier header). Specifically, the country ($80:FFD9) and revision ($80:FFDB) bytes. Depending on the values here, I set certain variables to different values, so that the correct location in Cranky's text routine is hijacked for each version. For instance, in US version 1.0, $80:ED1F is the correct hijack location. In European version 1.1, the equivalent location is $80:ECC0.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby B.B.Link » November 6th, 2015, 10:34 am

Thanks for fixing that Mattrizzle. I always loved that patch but it froze on bosses. Are you still working on those Boss Rush hacks still?

EDIT;I'm getting errors: :shakehead:

Image

this is on a clean DKC 1.0 ROM
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Mattrizzle » November 6th, 2015, 12:11 pm

Is your ROM a headerless smc file? If so, change its extension to sfc.
If the ROM's extension is smc, Asar will assume it has a header. If it is sfc, Asar will assume it doesn't have a header.

(I tested this patch with headerless ROMs, but not headered ones! :facepalm:)
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby B.B.Link » November 6th, 2015, 5:57 pm

I got it working. Thanks again.
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » April 12th, 2016, 4:23 pm

Here's a little teaser for something that I am in the middle of working on... custom demos for Donkey Kong Land III! For now, I am providing an .ips patch which contains four custom demos in the GBC version, viewable on the title screen:

http://www.mediafire.com/download/o7rj3 ... +demos.ips

This patch should be applied to a clean Japanese GBC ROM. (It also contains English patch v1.2 as well, though I can make a separate patch that only has the demos if anybody wants.)

As in the original game, pressing Select, Left, Up, or Down will change the demo that you will see after waiting on the title screen. The new demos contain the following levels:

- 0 presses: Rocketeer Rally
- 1 press: Rainforest Rumble
- 2 presses: Black Ice Blitz
- 3 presses: Ugly Ducting

The demos in the original game are also here as well. They are unchanged, with the exception of Jetty Jitters to fix a desyncing issue in the vanilla GBC game:

- 4 presses: Jetty Jitters
- 5 presses: Rickety Rapids
- 6 presses: Whiplash Dash
- 7 presses: Deep Reef Grief

I created these custom demos with a separate ASM hack that records button presses while playing any level and saves this data to SRAM, but I haven't released it yet because I still need to iron this out (I've seen occasional desyncs). I'd also like to make a tool to extract this saved data and insert it into the ROM, but I haven't started this yet, and I don't know when I'll finish it (due to limited free time). But for now, you get to enjoy custom demos!

And eventually, I'd like to make this work with DKL2, and maybe even DKL as well. But I haven't started those games yet. Don't ask me when I'll be done with all of this!
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Cyclone » April 13th, 2016, 6:54 am

sounds intriguing! Could you provide a youtube video or something of your hack in action?
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » April 20th, 2016, 4:21 pm

I'm glad you're interested! I'd like to upload a video of it, but I gave up on YouTube years ago and have no intention of going back. Maybe if there's a better alternative to YouTube, I'll consider making a video of this hack...
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » December 4th, 2016, 10:40 am

Here's a small hack that I made for DKL3 GBC -- this one replicates the behavior in bonus stages in the SNES versions of DKC2 and DKC3, in that when you're running low on time in a bonus stage, the music will continually speed up.

Specifically, the music tempo will speed up once the timer reaches 10 seconds, and will speed up again once it reaches 5 seconds.

Here are some links to patches. The first one simply does what I described above, while the second one also contains my English patch (v1.2) as well. Both of the patches should be applied to a clean Japanese DKL3 ROM:


While I only briefly tested this in a bonus stage, it does work, and doesn't appear to break anything else.

Now for a more technical explanation below, for those who are interested:

Spoiler!
In every Game Boy/Game Boy Color and NES game by Rare that I've looked at, the music engine allows for the tempo to be dynamically changed at any time, which potentially allows for the music to speed up or slow down depending on the situation. This works because the current tempo is always stored in RAM, and changing it will instantly alter the tempo. If you've looked at this topic for my notes on music in DKL2 and DKL3, you're already aware of this, but it also applies to several other Rare games. Namely, all of the 8-bit Battletoads and Donkey Kong games that I know of work this way. In the case of several Battletoads games, the music speeds up as you approach a difficult section in a level (perhaps a boss, or some section where you need to rush), and it makes for a neat effect. Here are some examples in these videos:


There are other examples, but if you see those videos, you'll get the idea.

Now, the engines for the Donkey Kong Land games (as well as Donkey Kong Country for GBC) are based off the earlier Battletoads games for the Game Boy, and they borrowed the dynamic tempo functionality, in that the current tempo is stored in RAM. Here are RAM addresses of the current music tempo in the following games:

  • Battletoads (NES): 0x0033
  • Battletoads & Double Dragon (NES): 0x003A
  • Battletoads (GB): 0xCA9D
  • Battletoads in Ragnarok's World: 0xC7A3
  • Battletoads & Double Dragon (GB): 0xCB67
  • Donkey Kong Land: 0xCA05
  • Donkey Kong Land 2: 0xDAF7
  • Donkey Kong Land III: 0xDAF7
  • Donkey Kong Country (GBC): 0xC322

If you use an emulator with a memory editor (such as FCEUX for NES or BGB for GB/GBC), you can edit these values, and they will instantly alter the music tempo. Try it, it can be amusing!

Naturally, the Donkey Kong Land games (as well as DKC) could have had situations where the music would change tempo in certain situations, but it seems that Rare didn't really care about this at all in these games. So, it's a wasted opportunity. One obvious scenario would have been the bonus stages, which is where my hack comes in. Rare could also have made it so that the music speeds up as you deal more and more damage to a boss (like in the Battletoads games). There could have been other possibilites that I'm not thinking of. It's a shame that Rare didn't bother at all with this.

As you might guess, the custom ASM code I used to implement this wasn't very complicated -- it involves checking for the seconds remaining on the timer, and sets the tempo if it's less than a certain amount. Here is are the details:

Code in the vanilla Japanese ROM:
Code: Select all
# This code is executed every second, when the counter decrements. So, this is a good place for me
# to add a hook for new code.
ROM5:4FB1 77               ld   (hl),a   # Write the current second counter to RAM  (hl=C5EE)
ROM5:4FB2 18 25            jr   4FD9     # Jump to whatever needs to be executed next.


Custom code:
Code: Select all
# Replace this code with a jump to unused space in ROM.
ROM5:4FB1 C3 00 7E         jp   7E00


Code: Select all
# The start of unused space.
# Note that the tempo of the bonus music is normally CC.
ROM5:7E00 77               ld   (hl),a   # Write the current second counter to RAM  (hl=C5EE)
                                         # Since the jump replaces the instruction in 5:4FB1, it
                                         # goes here instead.
ROM5:7E01 FE 06            cp   a,06     # Are there less than 6 seconds left?
ROM5:7E03 38 07            jr   c,7E0C   # If so, then jump to 5:7E0C to set the tempo to FC
ROM5:7E05 FE 11            cp   a,11     # Are there less than 11 seconds left? (Note: This game
                                         # frequently uses binary-coded decimals for counters,
                                         # so this should be 11, NOT 0B.)
ROM5:7E07 38 0D            jr   c,7E16   # If so, then jump to 5:7E16 to set the tempo to E4
ROM5:7E09 C3 D9 4F         jp   4FD9     # There are at least 11 seconds left, so don't change the
                                         # tempo. We're done here.
ROM5:7E0C F5               push af
ROM5:7E0D 3E FC            ld   a,FC     # Change the tempo to FC
ROM5:7E0F EA F7 DA         ld   (DAF7),a
ROM5:7E12 F1               pop  af
ROM5:7E13 C3 D9 4F         jp   4FD9     # We're done, so exit out of this code.
ROM5:7E16 F5               push af
ROM5:7E17 3E E4            ld   a,E4     # Change the tempo to E4
ROM5:7E19 EA F7 DA         ld   (DAF7),a
ROM5:7E1C F1               pop  af
ROM5:7E1D C3 D9 4F         jp   4FD9     # We're done, so exit out of this code.


Needless to say, if you are interested in modifying this code yourself, use BGB, open the debugger, and set a breakpoint at 5:7E00. If you are more comfortable with a hex editor than a disassembler, and you feel that the tempos are too fast or too slow and you wish to adjust them, then you can go to offsets 0x17E0E and 0x17E18 and change these bytes.

Side note: I took a very brief look at the SNES version of DKC2, and the tempo doesn't seem to be implemented the same way as Rare's GB and NES games. I tried to use a RAM search in BizHawk when in a bonus stage, and kept running searches when the music sped up, but I couldn't find any byte in RAM that stores the current tempo. Granted, I've had very little experience in hacking SNES games, and none of it involves ASM, but I still find this surprising that I couldn't find the byte for the current music tempo there.


Finally, I plan to make a similar patch for DKL2, but most of Rare's games are more difficult to hack than DKL3 GBC or DKC GBC, because they're extremely tight on space, and adding anything new to these games requires expanding the ROM, and then repointing lots of code and data thanks to the Game Boy's 16KB banks. That's not to say that it's impossible, but it takes extra effort. By the way, this is largely why most of my hacks are focused on DKL3 GBC rather than the other games.

(I wonder if I should officially make this part of my English patch if I ever make more improvements to it, as opposed to a fork? Hmm.)
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby Blaziken257 » January 2nd, 2017, 4:15 pm

And now for a minor hack for the SNES version of DKC3: This fixes Kiddy's color palette in bonus screens when the COLOR cheat is used. Specifically, in the retail game, Dixie's color palette was properly adjusted to dark purple, but Kiddy's is still blue. This hack makes Kiddy's palette green as it should be. This change was backported from Japanese v1.1, the only known revision that assigns Kiddy's color palette properly.

Below is a link to the IPS patch. It works properly on both the vanilla American and European versions (since their palettes are stored in the same offsets).
http://www.mediafire.com/file/8pfvhmk0w ... or+fix.ips

This patch should be applied to a headerless ROM (which is exactly 4,194,304 bytes in size).

And here are screenshots for your pleasure:
Spoiler!
Image Image Image Image


For reference, here is what the palettes look like in the retail versions:
Spoiler!
American / European (Also Japanese v1.0, notwithstanding the English text)
Image Image Image Image
Japanese v1.1
Image Image Image Image

Finally, as you may have guessed, I'm slowing starting to learn ROM hacking for the SNES, because I'd like to focus on systems other than Game Boy sometimes. Mainly, I'd like to learn assembly for it, which will naturally take a while to do. I actually found the offsets for these palettes using a disassembler in bsnes-plus, though this isn't an ASM hack since no code was modified. Nevertheless, I plan on doing more with it. One fairly ambitious thing that I'd like to do is backport some of the bug fixes from the European and Japanese versions to the American version, which has the most bugs. I imagine that it will be difficult to do, but I can at least try it! And I am sure that learning assembly will be necessary for this...
And in case you're wondering, I haven't given up on Game Boy hacking completely, just taking a break from it for a while. So don't worry about that!
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Re: Minor DKC hacks & early works in progress

Postby VideoViking » January 3rd, 2017, 8:22 am

What assembly tricks did you learn from the Game Boy releases that we could see once you move on to the SNES? This would be a major breakthrough that would help DKCRE immensely as well as my dormant DKCX game.
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