Project Stuff Archive

Final Fantasy IV: The Save File Maintenance Years

This week I’ve been doing some organization-related work for my upcoming book about Funky Fantasy IV. I’ve got an early chapter already mostly done but I wanted to make sure I wasn’t forgetting anything good/funny so I’ve been scouring through text files and jumping around in the game to get things I missed before.

It’s a bit of a hassle since FFIV/FFII don’t really have debug menus, so I’ve been relying on an old save file archive I put together for my FF4 comparison site. The problem is that I never really documented where each save file is so it’s always taken me 10+ minutes just to find a save file where I need it to be. So now I’m finally going through and documenting that stuff for future time savings.

Unfortunately it looks like one of my saves is missing entirely so I’ll have to play a good chunk of the game to re-create it. It’s also a bit of a hassle when using different save files on different versions of the game, as it means the characters’ names get messed up each time. But it’s a small hassle when I stop to realize I’m playing Final Fantasy IV for a career – kid me would be so shocked hear about this 😛

LoL Corner in the Fangamer Office

Tucked away in the corner of Fangamer’s photo studio / archive room is the Legends of Localization corner (in that cabinet).

It’s usually filled to the brim when we’re working on a big book project, but right now it’s pretty tame inside~

You can see there’s some leftover EarthBound stuff that I still need to return to their owners!

Vroom in the Buggy Sky

I’ve been playing through the Japanese version of “Vroom in the night sky” to screenshot all of the lines of text in the game. That means I have to spend a lot of time in levels racking up the points. In doing so, I’ve discovered a few funny bugs:

  • I clipped through the floor in the sunset beach level
  • Myself and the purple witch sometimes get stuck in the palm trees
  • The purple witch started bouncing up and down, and then got stuck when she landed on top of my head (pictured above)

Despite all the horrible reviews it’s gotten, this is one of my favorite games on the Switch~

FF6T Script Difference Checking

A distant goal is to create a script for my custom emulator project that will allow fans to play the Japanese Final Fantasy VI T-Edition hack in English. The hack is incredibly complex and thorny, enough that a full translation patch is considered to be impossible. Personally, I say it’s possible but just excessively work-intensive to do a patch. In any case, I started laying the groundwork for a non-patch translation project (which uses my custom emulator sidebar stuff as a base) a few weeks back but I needed to determine some info ahead of time in order to save myself a ton of work later.

First, the original FF6 script contained about 3000 lines of text. The FF6T script clearly has many more, and after doing the necessary reverse engineering, I learned that it’s around 4600 lines of text. Most of the original script was left intact, though, so I decided to run a comparison to see which of the original FF6 lines matched the FF6T lines. In these cases, since nothing was changed, I simply display the equivalent line from the SNES English translation. This alone will save me a lot of time – otherwise I’d be retranslating the entire original game from scratch (which has already been done to death) AND the entire new hack!

But I soon discovered that many of the changed lines simply had kana words changed into kanji – in other words, no meaning was changed. So I wanted to find a way to identify these lines too and avoid having to manually translate them. So I made a big HTML file of text lines that were different in FF6 and FF6T, which you can see here if you’re interested:

diffs

Using this file, I then manually made a list of the line #s that were essentially the same despite kanji differences. In all, about 440 original lines were changed, and adding in the number of completely brand new lines, I have about 1600 lines of text to translate. Oh man. That’s on top of all the other programming, enemy/item/spells/technique names, and whatever else I’m forgetting. But I think it’ll be worth it in the end… whenever that comes.

I’m currently using FF6T version 2.5 as a base, but it gets updated often enough that by the time I finish it’ll be beyond 3.0. Hopefully not TOO much will change between those versions, or we’ll just be stuck using 2.5.

New and Current Legends of Localization!

The past few days/weeks have been filled with some interesting and unexpected things for me and Legends of Localization, so I thought I’d share of them! I’ve forgotten about half of them now, so here are just the ones I can remember:


Academic Journal

That’s right – apparently I was mentioned and quoted in an academic journal called The Journal of Internationalisation and Localisation 😯 This was actually from many years ago too, so it’s surprising that I’ve only now heard about it. You can check it out here and you can find the stuff about me by searching for my name.

You know, sometimes when I think back on some of my projects, I just remember, “Oh, that’s the game where I had to translate poop jokes,” so it’s a pretty crazy feeling to be a quotable source for academic writing, heh.


Retro Gamer

I’m also in the latest issue of Retro Gamer magazine! I swear, every time I see pictures of this magazine it makes me want to buy every issue ever. So it’s an honor to be within its pages! You can actually see a quick video preview of the issue here:

Haha, I just realized that the Japanese text next to “Key Figures” means that I’m an “important number” 😛


New Project in the Works

For the past many weeks I’ve been putting together a new project – a comparison of the latest Zelda game for the 3DS. Late last year I finally sat down to play through A Link Between Worlds and started thinking – since I’ve already taken a detailed look at the first Zelda game’s localization, it would be cool to look at the very latest game’s localization too to see how things have changed in all these years. So I’ve been doing just that, and it’s actually turning out to be a lot more fascinating than I expected!

Anyway, I don’t have a timeline for this project yet, but it’s coming along nicely. I originally wasn’t even going to mention it until it was ready, but the main reason is this: if you have any questions or suggestions for stuff I should look into, lemme know! I don’t want to miss anything if I can help it, since it won’t always be easy to go back and check things.

In fact, while playing through both versions of the game and gathering screenshots, I also decided to record video for future reference and to supplement any screenshots I miss. I also decided to start uploading them to YouTube, so if you’re interested in checking out videos of the Japanese and English version of A Link Between Worlds, I’ve started slowly posting them on my YouTube channel here!

When the time comes I’ll be adding these to the appropriate comparison pages too. Be sure to let me know if I’ve missed anything or if I should try not to miss certain things – as of writing this I’m about to get the Master Sword.


Final Fantasy IV

My Final Fantasy IV comparison section has turned into a huge monster over time! But my recent decision to try to do one update a month has made it a lot easier for me to handle, so I’ll probably keep doing it that way for a while. The next update is going to be the Tower of Zot… which means some serious stuff’s about to go down!


AVGN Section Stuff

The other week I posted a new section about Angry Video Game Nerd-related stuff, and it’s actually been one of the most-viewed section of the site since 😯 My aim is to do a new article every couple of weeks; the ones that don’t involve creating comparison videos are surprisingly quick for me to write up, so it’s pretty easy and fun. Next up will be Who Framed Roger Rabbit… ugh.


Xenoblade for Fun, Research, and Health!

Last year I played through Xenoblade, and after some initial frustration it went on to become one of my all-time favorite games. I spent about 150+ hours on it, and about half of those were actually while I was on my exercise bike. I actually mentioned this to some friends and they were like, “Holy crap that’s a great idea, I’m gonna do it too!”

Anyway, I wanted to get back in the swing of things, so I decided the other day to start a new game of Xenoblade. Then I realized, you know, maybe I should record my gameplay for future reference if I ever want to do a comparison project, or if I just want to do tiny mini-articles like this one. So I’ve started recording Xenoblade videos and uploading them too, in what I call a “Let’s Workout” 😛

It’s not especially exciting stuff to watch, but if you’re interested, it’s on my YouTube channel too. Eventually I hope to move on to the Japanese version and record it too, but that won’t be for a while I’m sure. But, again, if you have any suggestions on what I should look out for or what I should try not to miss, let me know!

(Just to be clear, I’m not announcing a Xenoblade comparison, but I’d love to do one someday, which is why I’m recording these videos.)


Man, I know there’s a lot more that I ought to mention, but I can’t remember it right now. But anyway, if you have any info or suggestions or whatever, please share them with me~

Also, after writing all this up, I’m amazed at how I rarely play games how they’re meant to be played anymore – I play them for research purposes and workouts now? Man, what a weirdo.

– Clyde

Legends of Localization Getting Noticed!

As I’ve been slowly putting the Legends of Localization site together over the past few weeks, it’s actually started to get noticed by some people in the gaming press, which is pretty exciting. For example, Gametrailers’ Pop Fiction series featured the 256 worlds of Super Mario Bros. 1 trick that I posted about a while ago:

The guy behind Pop Fiction actually got in contact with me a few weeks beforehand and I provided more info, pics, and such. So it was really cool not only getting mentioned in something, but also playing a tiny part in it 😀

Legends of Localization’s also gotten a few big mentions on Kotaku in the last few weeks, particularly thanks to Jason Schreir’s “Random Encounters” series. One post involved JRPG censorship:

And another article featured the “Mistwalker trick” that I’d posted over on the Final Fantasy IV section:

It’s a lot of work putting together these localization thingies, so it’s cool to see the word slowly getting out little by little. Hopefully I can keep digging up more neat stuff like this as time goes on too 😀

– Clyde