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Spikeman

English

Description:

Spikeman discovered ROM Hacking around 2004 while randomly browsing. He was very interested and immediately looked for some useful tools. He found ROMHacking.com and downloaded some tools and documents from there and began hacking Final Fantasy I. Although what he had been reading made it seem like hacking games with DTE should be hard for beginners, he figured it out before even finding out what DTE meant. It was then he knew that he could learn to be a fairly decent ROM Hacker. He then discovered Zophar’s Domain and started posting on the message board there. He didn’t really post much, but he gained some valuable skills there, including ASM hacking.

He started my first real ROMHacking project sometime in 2005. It was a translation of Rockman EXE 4.5 for GBA. He started off with some simple graphics hacks and eventually inserted an English font and translated the battlechips. Since the game was lacking space he posted on Zophar and it was suggested that he implement a DTE hack. He was pointed to a tutorial by KingMike on implementing DTE for the NES, but this was the GBA. He learned some basic GBA assembly by reading the document on the ARM processor that he downloaded from GBADev and happened upon the correct routine pretty much by luck, because then he didn’t know about breakpoints, tracing, and the like at all. He actually coded a DTE routine and assembled it by hand (typing the opcodes into Windows Calculator in binary and typing the hex into the game), and to his surprise, it worked! This event is what he marks as the beginning of his major ROMHacking interest.

His Rockman EXE 4.5 Translation project is still in progress today, and is a good deal further than it was before. A few months after he finished the aforementioned DTE hack, he lost his hard drive (and my entire computer) to a power surge. He didn’t get a new computer until several months later, after winning it in a contest. He started the hack again from scratch. This time he learned how to do ASM hacks the right way, with an assembler, and redid his DTE hack. He coded a utility to dump and insert strings from the game. The dumper/inserter currently can dump any block of text from the game, but needs an option to dump the game’s entire script. Currently he’s having a bit of “hacker’s block” and hasn’t touched the game in several months.

As far as other hacking goes, EXE4.5 has held most of his focus, but he has worked on a few other projects. One of these projects is coding a VWF for Cardcaptor Sakura, for Rhys on RHDN. The game uses OAM sprites for the text, so it wasn’t as complicated as a “true” VWF, but it was a good test of his ASM expertise. EXE4.5 already had a VWF, so he hadn’t had a chance to actually code a VWF, but he hopes to in the near future. Another project, that he’s kept largely secret, is Zelda: The Minish Cap. He’s taken some pretty extensive notes on the game, and hopes to eventually make an editor for it. Making a game editor has been one of his goals for awhile, to test his programming skills, as well as his hacking skills. He’s also been working on a hack for the game to make the Ocarina actually play songs instead of just working as a trigger for the teleports, but that hack is still in it’s beta stages. Another project which he hope’s to finish eventually, is an editor for Zelda: Link’s Awakening (Jigglysaint made one, but he could never get it to work), and a hack for the game. He’s had some pretty good ideas for ASM hacks for it as well, which would be a good segway into the world of Gameboy hacking.

In recent months, Spikeman’s been working on a translation of Shin Bokura no Taiyou (Boktai 3), and has made quite a bit of progress.

Links:

Releases:


4 Utilities
TitlePlatformCategoryDate
DTECountN/AMiscellaneous07 Dec 2007
LogicGuruGBALevel Editors04 Dec 2007
SaveConvertGBASavestate Hacking09 Jan 2007
PaletteEdGBAGBAPalettes07 Jan 2007

2 Translations
TitlePlatformCategoryDate
Shin Bokura no Taiyou: Gyakushuu no Sabata (EN)GBAUnfinished21 Nov 2007
Rockman EXE 4.5: Real Operation (EN)GBAUnfinished02 Jan 2007

2 Hacks
TitlePlatformCategoryDate
Metroid II DXGBImprovement07 Mar 2013
Super Mario Land ColourGBImprovement25 Feb 2013

Contributions:


2 Translations
TitleRoleCredit
Shin Bokura no Taiyou: Gyakushuu no Sabata (EN)Hackinghacking, graphics, and utilities
Rockman EXE 4.5: Real Operation (EN)Hacking

2 Hacks
TitleRoleCredit
Metroid II DXHackingVersion 2 Hacking & Improvements
Super Mario Land ColourHackingLead Programmer