RPG Hack Showcase: Final Fantasy CII

Hack Showcases and RPG Hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. Some of these i may stream or play on my own.

Final Fantasy C2 was originally released in 2016 by Naka no Hito. This hack is special as it takes the Super Famicom Final Fantasy 4 and transforms it beautifully into an updated version of Final Fantasy 2, the black sheep of the FF games originally release don the NES, and later ported to PSX, GBA, and PSP. The Professional Japanese-to-English localizer Clyde “Tomato” Mandelin, who is known for making the fan English patch for the GBA Mother 3 who runs the Legends of Localization website, dropped an English patch for Final Fantasy C2 recently in 2 different flavors!

There is a version A and version B of this patch. Version A uses the original hack’s FF4’s graphics. Version B changes the enemies FF4 enemies into that of enemies in FF2 with upgraded graphics. Tomato even recommends most people to play version B (version B is the one I played for this review.) A readme file included shows how to patch the hack if you’re not familiar with using ips files, along with a number of other changes including: quality of life improvements, a 5 member party with party swapping late in the game, new spells and gear, a treasure tracker just for fun, and more! Links to a news article about this hack and the website to download this included at the end of this page.

So I was excited to play this spur of the moment! I love FF4 after playing Free Enterprise and the Ultima hack for the past month and wanted to see what this brought to the table. Plus i have little experience with FF2 so this would give me a chance to play without dealing with the wacky leveling system. I had been playing this long ago on PSX but gave up for some reason and was considering trying the PSP edition on stream.

So this review is going to be for the C2 hack itself, along with the English patch.
So how is it?
This was a lot of fun to play so far! The story is loosely based on the main story points of FF2, but some events occur within FF4 locations. Towns and castles tend to be base don those from FF4, or parts of them. Like Altair is based on Mysidia, but when you get to the war room area, you’re in the main hall of Fabul Castle, and then back to the Tower of Wishes from Mysidia! Some events from FF2 play out differently in the context of FF4 like instead of going with Josef to the ice caves you go to Mt Fabul instead, or you fight the CPU from the Giant of Bab-Il before destroying the Dreadnaught. The enhanced graphics for the FF2 enemies look great as do the sprites of the main and temporary heroes of FF2’s story, and you can find npc sprites from both FF2 and 4 running around town. Your temporary 5th character from the FF2 story beats are one of the heroes from FF4, like Josef is Yang, Gordon is Edward, etc. Additions were made to FF2’s heroes to make up for the loss of building your stats or buying magic in the orginial game. Firion has an incantation option in battle, Josef has Yang’s skills, and Maria starts with white, black, and summon magic like Kid Rydia in FF4. This hack is essentially a fanfic, but it’s so well done you’ll want to keep playing to see how much stuff from FF4 is incorporated into FF2’s story. The game does hit FF2’s story beats, but goes into a variation of FF4’s story elements at times especially near endgame. Because of FF4’s limitations, certain graphical elements such as destoryed cities can’t be shown, you’re just told.

Other items included from the original hack and when Tomato made his English patch are a treasure chest tracker to see how many treasure chests you opened just for fun. You can run using the B button, and secrets can be found from talking to the crystals, the chocobo forests will eventually have all the types of chocobos you all know and love! New spells besides Incant have been added and spells and skills have been reworked. The translation is quite good too! All music from this hack is FF4’s, so you’ll eventually come across your favorite turns from the game! Any tricks that can be done in FF4 are present in this hack too (like item duplication). If you have or haven’t played the original FF2 this is recommended, especially if you have a strong love for FF4! Think of this hack as FF4 but with FF2’s story beats.

I GIVE THIS HACK 4.5 OUT OF 5 CHOCOBOS!

Here’s the gameplay video:

LINKS:
https://www.nintendoenthusiast.com/final-fantasy-c2-an-ffiv-patch-that-remakes-it-as-famicom-final-fantasy-ii-now-in-english/ – news article
http://tomato.fobby.net/ffc2/ – The patch and screenshots
https://twitter.com/ClydeMandelin/status/1284261146866810880 – Twitter announcement

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Metroid mOTHER Hack Review

Hack Showcases and RPG hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. Some of these i may stream or play on my own.

Metroid was released for the NES in the US in 1987. The game followed the adventures of Samus Aran as she traveled through Zebes to eliminate the threat of Metroids and Mother Brain. The game featured a very large map and item collection where you cannot get to some areas without another item. The game had a password which saved your progress and item collection, and saved you at the starting spot where you last died in the different areas of the planet. I had this as a kid, but the yellow cart re-release. i loved it even though I had little clue what I was doing aside from random tidbits i could find from Nintendo Power issues. Metroid: Zero Mission is the same game, but with a more fleshed out backstory, and features added in later Metroid titles.

As of this writing this hack is at version 1.0 released April 23, 2014. This hack was released by dACE in 2014 which is a combination of a few other hacks which add numerous quality of life features to this old title:

Metroid + Saving (v 0.3) – snarfblam: http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/1186/

  • Minimap
  • Savefiles
  • Beamstacking
  • Better icebeam and bombs

MDbtroid – Infinity’s End: http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/1219/

  • Nicer titlescreen
  • Nicer endings
  • Updated run animation
  • Updated player sprite (suited and suitless)
  • Updated enemy sprites
  • Enlarged and updated Kraid and Ridley
  • Updated Mother Brain
  • Various updated tiles

‘Roidz – DemickXII: http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/1240/

  • Nicer background tiles
  • Animated lava, doors and elevators
  • Animated corridors
  • Animated Norfair (Ridley level)
  • Animated Tourian (Mother Brain level)
  • Various updated tiles

The Metroid + Saving Unoffical Update patch by DannyPlaysSomeGames adds more to this. If you plan to use both of these hacks, it’s suggested to patch your Metroid rom with the Saving Unoffical Update patch before mOTHER. As of this writing 0.5.2 was released on July 20, 2020.

  • Reductions in missile door cost (5 missiles to 1 with red doors and 10 to 5 with yellow/purple doors)
  • Manual saving via Up+A
  • Restored Japanese RNG
  • Sped-up door transitions
  • Morphball glitch initially not seen in original game fixed
  • Missile pickups now drop more frequently and give 5 missiles instead of 2.

So how is it? This hack is great and it really brings Metroid into a more modern age! The graphical improvements to the sprites and background look a lot more clear and the animations seem more fluid. Seeing the lava, water, and even moving lights on the door are a great touch! The saving feature and the quick saving (pause and hit up and a) is much needed and easier than writing down long complicated passwords (or just take a photo with your phone, your choice). Being able to restart at full energy like if you hit a refill station in the later games really cuts down on grind time and makes things faster to defeat the Metroid threat. The challenge of the original title is still there, so if you’re going into this blind, make a map and remember where gear and the bosses are! I kinda wish the mini-map when you’re playing and when you pause has a little more detail, like a dot where you found new gear, energy takes or more missiles. Being able to blow open the rocket doors with fewer rockets is a help and again cuts on the grind time since rng doesn’t always go the player’s way when trying to restock on energy or missiles. That and some graphical breakups are really my only nitpicks with this hack improvement (though some them might still be in the original due especially when there’s a lot of moving stuff on the screen). Saving will bring you to the opening area of where you died and saved last, either Brinstar, Kraid’s lair, Norfair or Tourian.

You can see my video showcasing this hack here:

I GIVE THIS 4.5 OUT OF 5 METROIDS!!

Get these rom patches here:
https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/1988/ – metroid mOTHER
https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/4471/ – metroid+ saving unofficial update

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Who Framed Roger Rabbit Gameboy & NES Review

The NES and Gameboy Who Framed Roger Rabbit games were released in 1989 and 1991 as tie-ins to the Disney Who Framed Roger Rabbit movie. Rare programmed the NES game and it was published by LJN, the Gameboy title was designed by Capcom. Both game play differently through the events of the movie. The NES game taking control of Eddie Valiant to solve the mystery of Roger Rabbit, the Gameboy title you take control of Roger himself to fight the Weasels and then confront Judge Doom. I’ve recently played and finished the Gameboy title for the first time and revisited the janky NES game after not playing it since I was a kid. Mistakes were made.

GAMEBOY ROGER RABBIT: The Gameboy Roger Rabbit has you playing as Roger trying to figure out who killed Marvin and get the deed to save Toontown from Judge Doom. Each chapter of the game has you solving a puzzle or 2 to get items to fight one of the 4 weasels. You’ll meet up with other people from the movie who help you out, and your life consists of 3 hearts. Losing all 3 hearts mean a game over and you start over at the start of the chapter again. Carrots are found around the overworld which will restore a heart, but they don’t regenerate until you game over and restart. Graphics in this game are very large and well-drawn and the music can be annoying at times. Controlling Roger can be janky sometimes, but other than that Roger will do what you instruct of him. This game is actually fun! Each chapter is a bit different with a puzzle or gameplay element, from shooting weasels with a toon gun to driving Benny the Taxi. Judge Doom’s warehouse is a maze to solve before fighting Judge Doom at the end. Graphics when you finish a chapter are vibrant and resemble a comic book or cartoon. It’s not very hard, but getting to the end of a chapter by finding the right person or item to get can be annoying and involve a lot of backtracking. A password is given when you finish a chapter for continuing your adventure. Losing to a weasel at the end of a chapter means restarting the chapter from the start, but each chapter isn’t very long but going from point a to b to fight the weasels can be annoying.

I GIVE GAMEBOY ROGER RABBIT 4 OUT OF 5 CARROTS!!

NES ROGER RABBIT: So this was programmed by Rare and published by LJN. This game is janky as hell and I’m surprised Rare created this. LJN being involved doesn’t surprise me at all. You control Eddie with Roger in tow and you need to find the 4 pieces of the deed to Toontown, then fight Judge Doom. The 4 pieces of the deed are random in each game between 1947 LA, the outskirts, and Toontown. I like the idea of the pieces of the deed being random in each game to go with the detective aspect of Eddie valiant, but the execution is quite poor. Items found around the world and the shop are random too, so there’s a chance you will have to hunt a lot to find an item that you need to make progress. Everything can kill Eddie from cats, dogs, snakes, flower pots, and being run over, and you lose a life if birds carry Roger away (wtf?). You got 3 lives and 2 continues and your progress is saved by a long password. You can lose a life if you get caught by the weasels and fail to make them laugh with the right punchline to their bad jokes. At first it’s easy to find the right one but as you make them laugh, Eddie gets stronger and the list gets longer. It doesn’t help that switching items and finding the right punchline takes hitting 2 buttons on the controller. Punching with Eddie is annoying too where you have to keep hitting the b button to charge up his punch. Having a whistle lets you call Benny the Cab to drive around places and take the tunnel to Toontown once you open it up. This game is also known for the phone number that Jessica Rabbit would give you to get clues, which was a real phone number at the time! Graphics are quite colorful though and everyone resembles who they’re supposed to from the movie and the music you may find yourself enjoying. LA, the outskirts and Toontown are quite large, but aside from Eddie’s office, the store, the Ink & Paint Club and Maroon Cartoons, all the buildings are the same in LA, as well as AToontonw. A Map would have been nice so you know where you’ve already been would have been wonderful. Don’t forget the Magic House in Toontown! Controlling Eddie is easy, selecting items or punchlines as i mentioned before, is a chore. This game is only kinda fun if you can deal with the fact that everything wants your dead and the randomness of each game.

I GIVE NES ROGER RABBIT 3 OUT OF 5 CARROTS!!

 

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Phantasy Star Retranslation by SMS Power

Hack Showcases and RPG hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. Some of these i may stream or play on my own.

Phantasy Star was the first in the series of Phantasy Star rpgs which had a wonderful blend of sci-fi and fantasy involved in the plot and gameplay. Released in 1987 for the Sega Master System in Japan, and in 1988 in the West, the Phantasy Star games were known for their mix of fantasy and sci-fi, along with magic and high end sci-fi ideas. The journey takes you across three planets of the Algol System on a quest of revenge for Alis Landale, one the few female protagonists at the time. One the concerts introduced in this series was evil being a sentient being, called Dark Force. You could of course save your game to return to it later via battery. Your party in this game consists of Alis, a talking cat named Myau, a warrior named Odin, and a wizard named Lutz. One big difference between this and Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior/Quest was the fact that the dungeons and towers consisted of 3d first person mazes, meaning you didn’t have the top-down view from outside, meaning you needed to map your way to find your way to finding treasures and traps. PS was later ported to other systems in the US and Japan, and later the Sega Ages collections for Playstation 2 in Japan, which improved the graphics and sound, quality of life features, and a mapping feature. As of this review, version 2.00 of this hack was released on May 25 2020.

Aside from this, I don’t have much experience with Phantasy Star. I fell in love with the series starting with 4, and dabbled around with 2 and 3 over the years. Currently is/was playing PS1 on the GBA Phantasy Star Collection port, currently (as of this writing) at the tower which I think(?) will lead me to the Air Castle for the endgame with Lassic.

How is it? So this hack improves a lot of quality of life features. A menu on the title screen lets you speed up the walking speed, change the music, Alis’ hair color and multiple the experience and mestea (money) you obtain from enemies from 2 to 4x. These improvements definitely save time grinding for money and xp, and makes going from point a to b faster and more streamlined. Grinding can be rough in this, especially at the start like most rpgs. The translation is a lot cleaner and makes more sense too, with names changed like Odin to Tylon and Noah to Lutz. The music is incredible and being able to listen to all of it on the title screen is great. Take a listen to the difference!

I GIVE THIS 4.5 OUT OF 5 MYAU TREATS!!
Get it here:
https://www.romhacking.net/translations/1069/
https://www.smspower.org/Translations/PhantasyStar-SMS-EN

You can watch my gameplay of this up to un-stoning Tylon here:

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Mega Man X SNES Review

Mega Man X was released by Capcom in January 1994 in America. This is a continuation of the Mega man series, taking place in the future of the classic series. X retains the basic gameplay of the classic series with a number of improvements, along with the 16 bit graphics and music upgrades. In X, Dr. Cain discovered mega Man X sealed in a capsule by the long deceased Dr. light. X was to be sealed to insure his programing of free will would work properly and he wouldn’t turn against humanity. Cain used the basis of X to created the Reploids, robots with free will. Life was good until some Reploids turned against humanity and went Maverick, which a group led by Sigma called the Maverick Hunters were forced to fight them. Sigma eventually went Maverick and Mega Man X, feeling responsible, went out to stop the Maverick War.

Besides the graphical and music improvements, X sports a number of new moves and features. One of them being the 8 bosses you fight being called Mavericks and their names being based upon different animals and plants and are humanoid in appearance, and of course Sigma replacing Dr. Wily as the final boss. X can still gain new weapons from defeating the 8 Mavericks just like in the classic series. Another change are the upgrades to X’s helmet, armor, boots and gun which are found hidden in capsules around the 8 levels. The spirit of Dr. Light will upgrade X, the gun upgrade giving you a more powered up shot for your X Buster and the weapons you receive from the bosses. X now sports a dash move when you upgrade his boots, along with a wall jump move letting the player jump up walls and slide down them, along with doing dashes off walls themselves. Other upgrades found in stages include heart tanks which increase X’s life bar and 4 sub-tanks which replace energy tanks from the classic series. Unlike the classic series, you can fill these with energy until max, and use as needed, and keep refilling them with energy when your life bar is full. A password system like the classic series, saves your progress on fought Mavericks and other upgrades.

I never had this game, though I may try to get it now, but I did rent this and play it with friends often. Never finished it until recently, now gonna try to finish it in the ps2 mega Man X Collection. I loved the new graphics and music (the prologue stage slaps!!), along with the new abilities.

REVIEW TIME: I loved this game as a teen and replaying it now, I still love it! Finishing it finally I’ve only finished X, X2, and I think X4. The gameplay is solid and the graphics are very pretty as per Capcom’s usual high quality. The music is incredible! The story of X fighting Sigma, losing his buddy Zero during the Maverick War (the 1st of many), and X seeking vengeance from Vile and later Sigma is classic.

GRAPHICS AND SOUND: The graphics are Capcom’s usual high standard that longtime gamers know of. Very colorful and detailed, and everything even has different shades of color in them if you look closely. X, the Mavericks and other enemies stand out from the solid and colorful backgrounds. I also really like the way explosions are depicted after defeating a Maverick or other enemies throughout the stages. The music, wow! The soundtrack is a combination of rock and techno-ish and it works. My favorite tracks being Storm Eagle and the prologue stage, both of which are still iconic to this day.

PLAY CONTROL: Play control is tight, like with previous Mega Man titles and other Capcom games of the era. Really only tricky things will be trying to do wall dashes after skipping or sliding up walls to dash to the other side, or trying to get to an area for a powerup. If you’re bad at fighting games (like me) if/when you find Ryu’s Hadoken powerup might be tricky to get off.

CHALLENGE: A lot of the challenge at the start will be staying alive with a small lifebar, especially during Maverick fights. The Maverick fights take more strategy than the Robot Masters did in the classic series, and same with some mini-bosses. Like the classic series, each Maverick is weak to another Maverick’s weapon so the key is finding the order. Again trying to wall dash might be a chore, even if you change your button configuration. You’ll have to think ahead sometimes to what new ability or weapon may unlock the path to a powerup or ability, but that’s half the fun. Final fights with Sigma can be hectic.

I GIVE MEGA MAN X 4 OUT OF 5 HEART TANKS!!

 

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Phantasy Star Generation: 4 – A Relocalization Hack

Hack Showcases and RPG Hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. Some of these i may stream or play on my own.

Phantasy Star was released by Sega and is the final entry in the sci-fi Phantasy Star rpg series. I got this as a teen and loved it even though i had never played a previous PS title. The story, the characters, the battles, music all took me in and I was flooded with emotion as I played it. Anything I was curious about regarding the PS backstory I just looked up in the early days of Wikipedia. I also loved the macro and combo system for certain skills and techniques combining into something even stronger. I had macros set up for building up my defense and ones for going all out with my strongest attacks during the deadliest of boss fights. Traveling and fighting by the three different vehicles was a blast! PS4 is still one my top 5 16bit rpgs along with FF6, Chrono Trigger, Super Mario RPG and Lufia 2.

This hack is by romhacking.net user GhaleonUnlimited. The goal of this hack was to bring the names, spells, etc closer to their Japanese counterparts, and what would have been used in a long canceled SEGA AGES release. There’s 2 different version sof this retranslation (as per romhacking.net):

1. “Generation 4 – “Working Designs”

  • Expands upon NPCs’ dialog.
  • Added comments from main character on the world of PSIV
  • A few modified/added lines of story dialog

If you’re a fan of Working Designs-style RPG writing (specifically Lunar and Lunar: EB on SEGA CD), you might best enjoy this. Or, if you’ve played PSIV before and would like an expanded look at the universe, try this.

2. Generation 4 – “Purist”

  • Removed most editorialization added to NPCs from WD script
  • Removed a few added dialog exchanges
  • Removed some dialog that fits the characters but isn’t in the Japanese script.

If you prefer a more straight-laced localization, this version removes most of the added color, leaving the naturalized English dialog, fixed PS references, more accurate story translation, and added PS background and story. This is closest to the literal, original Japanese script. The screenshots below are from the “Working Designs” patch, as is the review below. I did play “Purist” for awhile on my own to get a full view of the work done on this.

This writing was done using version 5.0 of this hack, released 6/6/2020.

SO HOW IS IT? Wow is this good! Right from the start when you begin a new game you can see the changes with Chaz renamed to Rudy. The bickering between Rudy and Rune is more intense, which i actually enjoyed. NPCs and other dialog has a more creative flavor and color to it, which I like. I did enjoy Working Designs work, so this hack feels great to me. The retranslated lore of previous PS games makes a little more sense now too. Nothing really new when it comes to battle scenes and navigating your menus or building macros. Some of the comments are out of place, like regarding coffee or tapping a keg, but to me, I could come up with an in-universe explanation and I never minded stuff like that in other rpgs and WD’s works. Oh and you may need Google translate for a certain NPC with a Pittsburgh dialect. 😉

If you want a more re-translated vanilla version of PS4, go for the Purist edition. Everything is more straight-laced. The added PS lore is still there, but the dialogue and NPCs are less colorful. In general, this patch is great and really adds to PS4, either with the Working Designs or the Purist patches. I can’t wait to see what this team does with the other Phantasy Star games next!

The video is a playthrough of a few parts of this PS4 hack, from the beginning to Tomoe, and later crashing on Dezolis and meeting Raja:

I GIVE THIS 4.5 OUT OF 5 STAR-DEWS!!
Get it here: https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/4171/
Website: https://gamesdonelegit.com/phantasy-star-iv-generation-4-psiv-romhack-relocalization/

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Castlevania 2 English Translation +Map Hack by Bisqwit

Hack Showcases and RPG Hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. Some of these i may stream or play on my own.

Castlevania 2, the black sheep of the original NES trilogy. Not a pure platformer like 1 and 3, but more of an adventure game with rpg elements like Zelda 2. Also made famous by the bad translation of clues and townspeople gossip which made figuring out progressing through the game harder then it should have been unless you had friends who knew what they were doing. Or Nintendo Power. And that infamous Nintendo Power cover that gave kids nightmares. I don’t have many memories of playing this as a kid except off and on renting or with friends. That said, never finished it either. lol Sometime ago after discovering romhacking.net I heard about the Castlevania 2: Redacted hack which was a vast improvement to the original game with a better translation, better day-night and night-day transition and so forth. Then discovered another improvement to Redacted by romhacking.net user Bisqwit. He took what was done in Redacted and improved it even more! CV2 was originally on the Famicom disk system, so of course there were elements lost from the transition to cartridge like a save system along with the password. he also added a map. A map! Bisqwit’s hack brings back the map feature along with the save (and password) and improved the translation even more (no more graveyard ducks!) Another change Bisqwit added was a faster transition to day and night minus the dialog box which is quite nice.

When I played this I added 2 other hacks to it: the Annoyance Fixes by tkempkes and the Game Over Penalty Reduction by NaOH hacks (links provided at the end of this post). The Game Over one reduces the amount of hearts lost at a game over to half instead of all of them. Annoyance Fixes gives a faster day and night transition, getting double hearts, and making the blocks that can be broken by holy water a different shade so you know which can be broken instead of throwing holy water around like it’s going out of style. A link will be later of the gameplay stream showing off this hack in action, along with links to get these hacks.

This writing was done using ver 2.9.8.19 of this hack released 5/6/2019.

SO HOW IS IT? So I gave it a shot and loved it on-stream and on my own! I combined this with an Annoyance Fixes hack which gave you more hearts upon defeating enemies for less grinding, and the false floors look different. That and one which allowed you to lose only half your hearts instead of all of them upon a game over. This is the version of CV2 that I wish came out when I was younger. The original still is enjoyable and has a lot of charm to it. The password system (which I’ve yet to try out honestly) and the save is wonderful, saving anywhere and restarting anywhere is great, I originally expected it to restart you at the nearest town.  Being able to figure out what the clues from villagers and the books in the mansions mean you don’t have to interpret wild and cryptic clues that could tear your hair out. In addition the better day-night transition, more hearts, and the floors that can break from holy water makes your journey to try to get one of the 3 endings easier. Loosing all your lives and continuing no longer means giving up all the hearts you gathered along the way! CV2 also has one my favorite versions of Bloody tears too.

Only downside I would really give is the fact that changing from the map back to the game itself will respawn all enemies in the area, leaving you to take damage you didn’t intend or want to. Not good when you’re trying to get from point A to point B to get to a church to heal. The difficulty itself of the game is still tough, even with the quality of life changes, so you’ll still find a challenge.

I GIVE THIS 4.5 OUT OF 5 GARLICS!!

So here’s the video of the showcase stream of me playing and discussing it as i went along:

Links:
Castlevania 2 English Re-translation (+Map): https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/4171/
Castlevania 2 Game Over Penalty Reduction: https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/4135/
Castlevania 2 Annoyance Fixes: https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/912/

 

 

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

Quick Famicom Reviews: Mad City, New Ghostbusters 2, Samurai Pizza Cats & The Goonies

So I’ve been playing a few Famicom games here and there on and off stream, found 4 I really enjoyed. I’ve been hoping to finish them at some point, and wanted to do some quick reviews of them instead full blown blog posts on them.

MAD CITY: Mad City is the Japanese version of Konami’s Adventures of bayou Billy. It’s a lot different, biggest change being the game is easier. When the game came out in America, the difficulty was kicked up a lot. You have beat-em-up stages, shooting and driving stages as you take a lovely adventure to save your girlfriend. mad City has 3 different endings. This game is great and i enjoy it more than bayou Billy. Graphics and music are so good! Fighting off enemies can be tricky in the later levels, resulting in you losing lives faster than you want, and has limited continues. I recommend this!

NEW GHOSTBUSTERS 2: This game was only released in Japan by Hal Labortories, while the US got a piece of crap Ghostbusters game from Activision. Chose one of the 4 Ghostbusters as your player (or Luis!) and your ai controlled Ghostbuster who will man the traps while you shoot the ghosts. The game is pretty easy and a lot of it is memorization of where enemies will appear and remembering how to dodge projectiles. The game can be janky at times with where enemies appear, resulting in unfair losing of lives and wasting of limited continues. Stage 3 is long and awful and can suck the momentum you’ve gained from the first 2 levels pretty fast. I recommend this!

SAMURAI PIZZA CATS: This game is based on the anime dubbed in the US and in Japan known as Kyatto Ninden Teyandee. Side-scrolling adventure where you pick one of the 3 Cats to journey across the levels and fight the forces of Bad Bird and Big Cheese. The graphics and music are very high quality and the challenge is enough for kids or someone just trying to blow off an afternoon. Except for the last 2 levels: levels 10 and 11, those are really tricky and loosing all your life restarts you from the beginning of the level, no checkpoints. Great cinema scenes and humor abound! You also have the 4 members of the Rescue Team to get past different obstacles like boulders, swimming, digging and flying sections of levels. I recommend this!

THE GOONIES: This game was only on the Famicom and is an adventure base don The Goonies film. Only US release of this was on Vs. Playchoice arcade machines, though you can find this on multicarts. Only US Goonies video game release was Konami’s Goonies 2. play as Mikey and travel different areas to rescue one of the Goonies per level, gain items and points, and find 3 keys to get to the next area. Hidden items are in each level to protect you from enemies or the environment that you have to find by kicking or shooting in certain spots. One hidden item will allow you to skip a level, but while skipping that level you can find one of the Goonies so you’re not missing any. Hidden diamonds are found the same way and will recharge your health when enough are found. Get bombs from enemies to open safes to find keys, items, or a Goonie. Rescue all the Goonies to get to the pirate ship final level. This game is a lot of fun and I’m glad i sat down with it recently and finished it. Most of the levels have a chiptune version of Cyndi Lauper’s “The Goonies R Good Enough” for the music on that level. I recommend this!

 

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

What is RPG & Game Hack Showcase?

So I’ve been playing jrpgs and some western rpgs most of my gaming career. When I got into retrogaming and emulation I loved being able to replay old favorites if I didn’t have the game anymore or system wasn’t hooked up. We all know there’s many changes we’ve discussed with friends that we wish were in some games, be it new plot ideas or quality of life improvements in 8 and 16bit rpgs.

Enter the rpg hacks. Romhacking.net has a large and wonderful collection of various hacks for all games including rpgs. Some the rpg ones include different plot elements introduced or a complete hack overhaul of said game, quality of life improvements and more! A few months ago i did a couple RPG Hack Showcases for 3 Final Fantasy 6 related hacks: Return of the Dark Sorcerer, A Complete Hack and Brave New World. Brave New World increases the difficulty some and cleans up plot elements and introduces a new way to learn magic from Espers. A Complete Hack overhauls the cast along with other elements including how magic is learned. Return of the Dark Sorcerer is a complete overhaul with the same(ish) plot, but new characters replacing our heroes, different way magic is learned from Espers and a completely different map! I had fun with them and I’ve recently gotten really into FF4 Ultima again, so I wanted to do some video showcasing different elements of some rpgs.

I have a small list of what rpgs I’d like to do include:
Phantasy Star 2
Phantasy Star 3
FF4 Ultima
FF4 Darkness Within
Secret of Mana
Chrono Trigger
7th Saga

So I’ve also extended it thanks to doing ones for Castlevania 2 and other non-rpgs to other games too. Same format as the rpg hack showcases, and sticking with ones that change the graphics and add new quality of life elements, saving instead of passwords, and so on. Format for these videos is me playing for like 30-40 minutes and showing off the changes to them, try to keep grinding to a minimum and so on. Video will still be on Twitch but also exported to my Youtube and linked to a review here on my blog. If/when I do play any of these for real on stream, I’ll still explain many of the changes, but play them as i would instead of trying to hurry from point a to b, grinding for rpgs, etc. I can add others over time if someone has suggestions. I’m sticking to ones that are more overhauls of the game with changes to the heroes, plot, equipment and such. I also want to do some with various quality of life improvements such as faster walking, cleaner menus and fonts, dialogue changes and such. Whenever I can, I’ll try to get a save state/save for later in said games to show off other changes. I’m considering adding any for the 2 SNES Breath of Fire titles and 7th Saga in the future. I’ll try to show off said hack for 20-40 minutes through the start to give an idea of what its all about, even with spoilers. Then do a blog review of said hack and embed the stream into the blog post.

So lemme know what you think!

 

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

TMNT of Rage: The Final Shell Shock Streets of Rage 2 Hack Review

Hack Showcases and RPG Hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. Some of these i may stream or play on my own.

TMNT of Rage is a successor to previous TMNT/Streets of Rage 2 mods TMNT of rage and TMNT Remix. Final Shell Shock adds more to these previous mods for a better experience. The Streets of Rage cast is replaced with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as they fight their way to save April and stop Mr X who enlisted the help of Shredder, Bebop and Rocksteady! This mod is a total throwback to the Streets of rage series and the TMNT Arcade Game and Turtles in Time. So for some of the changes, let’s take a look from the changelog:

  • A throwback to the old 90’s arcade splash screens starts off your gaming experience.
  • A six sequence ending specific to this game, the first for any SoR2 hack out there, incorporates redesigned images from the classic TMNT II and III NES games. These images also put some artistic spins on the palettes / color schemes for a bit of extra fun.
  • Those bumbling buffoons, those moronic mutants, Rocksteady and Bebop, have now joined the Syndicate! Dumber than advertised, but stronger than ever, get ready to go toe to toe with them, Bebop making his first appearance in a Genesis / Mega Drive game.
  • An updated story in attract mode complements the new ending sequence.
  • A new title screen takes greater advantage of the Genesis / Mega Drive’s palette options.
  • Thanks to Yoni, gone are road apples in favor of a nice slice! Try not to smile the first time you hear Mikey calling out “Pizza Time!” as he grabs some grub.
  • With the additional Re-Shelled patch, play the game on a Terraonion MegaSD (or with any emulator that supports MD+ functionality) to enjoy that sweet soundtrack from eskayelle’s TMNT MD+ Remix. Grab that soundtrack here!
  • Regardless of your region, the same tubular Final Shell Shock / Re-Shelled title screen and story intro will display.
  • SNES Turtles in Time portraits provide your starring cast on the player select screen.
  • Name sprite tiles on the player select screen call out Mike, Leo, Don, and Raph.
  • Are you used to Leo being the most well-rounded turtle? Raph being the strong one? Each reptile remains rebalanced!
  • Tired of getting your head stomped in by your “buddy”? Ti’s friendly fire patch has been applied, limiting the damage players can do to one another in story mode to throwing enemies and weapons.
  • Duplicate turtles in duel mode have alternate palettes, putting them that much closer to their ‘80s cartoon counterparts.
  • Galsia/Garcia and Donovan finally get their due! Play far enough into the game, and on the right difficulty setting, and you’ll have to contend with each of them once as a mini-boss.
  • Thanks to savok, now all players can run in all directions, as well as start a run when turning around. With the added speed, how many more air/juggle combos can you create with your favorite turtle?
  • Shiva’s on a leave of absence given his multiple failures to protect Mr. X. Backing X up this time is… the Shredder!
  • Continues remain removed to balance the lives options and allow for greater difficulty. Choose your turtle, and your lives count, wisely; you’ve only got one shot to take down the big man with the cigar.
  • SCD’s restorations from the original SoR2 remain: Garcia, Garuda, and Mosquito names; enemy knockouts counter; plus Mr. X’s cigar and cigar animation

This writing was a review of version 1.999 of this hack released 5/24/2020.

SO HOW IS IT?
This hack is FUN!! Final Shell Shock gives you no continues, but you have access to add up to 99 lives for your run, on any difficulty level. So you can make this as easy or hard as you want. All four turtles are open from the start and their animation and sprites look solid and fluid and blend perfectly into the SoR2 world. The Turtles have a basic slash attack, jump and special attack which takes a little life away. Suplex and grabs fill out your moveset and you can use them at any time fighting your way through the game. If you’ve played The Arcade Game or Turtles in Time, then the controls will be a breeze to learn and master. Health powerups are pizza slices, which prompts a “Pizza time!” cry from your player, and the large turkeys to fully restore health. Picking up a fallen weapon like a sword or steel rod changes your basic attack some.

If i had to say anything bad about it, it’s a few things but they’re mainly nitpicks anyway. I wish more of the SoR goons and some bosses changes to Foot Soldiers. Aside from Shredder, Bebop and Rocksteady it just seems like the TMNT were pasted into SoR2. I wish the turkeys were whole pizzas. Some of the SoR2 bosses could easily be changed (well as easy as changing the sprites and coding) to other TMNT related enemies, like the Stage 7 boss robots to Metalhead(s), and Zamza into Slash. Outside of that I haven’t found much wrong with this hack!

I did a Donatello run on Normal with 30 lives to give this a try on-stream a few days ago, if you wanna see how it plays:

TMNT: The Final Shell Shock can be found here:
http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/5169/

I GIVE THIS HACK 4.5 OUT OF 5 PIZZAS!!

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!