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Old 01-03-2011, 04:29 AM   #1
Deathrider
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Default ROM hacking process

I plan on hacking an NES rom that will feature new and/or additional music and/or sound effects, modified graphics, new story, and possibly modified gameplay and additional levels. I was wondering, what order are these normally done?
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Old 01-03-2011, 04:34 PM   #2
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I don't know that such massive hacks are done often enough for there to be a "normal order".

How much ROM hacking experience do you have? Several of the things you listed may require massive amounts of difficult work. Music hacking has only been successfully done in a small number of games. Adding levels will likely be quite difficult in a majority of games.

Changing the graphics will likely be relatively simple, assuming you're working on a game that's not compressed, same with changing the story. If it were me, I'd likely do the graphics first as that would probably be the simplest step and it will be easier to redesign levels once you can see the new graphics.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:35 PM   #3
Deathrider
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Unfortunately, I do not possess a lot of experience in the field. The only experience would be a little bit of graphics editing and minute hex editing for palette changes. Even if it will require difficult work, I will not be discouraged as this is for fun. I want to only put my best work into it because I don't want a half ass hack and I will do my best to research each aspect and find way to complete it.

I figured adding levels would be difficult. Is there any documentation on it? As for the music hacking, why has music hacking been unsuccessful? Lack of interest, tutorials, or both? Could I use Famitracker for it or is there no program that will import the data?

I will work on the graphics first. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 01-04-2011, 04:30 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deathrider View Post
I figured adding levels would be difficult. Is there any documentation on it?
There is no standard to how levels are stored, so each game is different. If someone hasn't documented level storage on the game already, you'll have to figure it out yourself.
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Old 01-05-2011, 08:01 PM   #5
InVerse
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Originally Posted by Deathrider View Post
As for the music hacking, why has music hacking been unsuccessful? Lack of interest, tutorials, or both? Could I use Famitracker for it or is there no program that will import the data?
As with levels, the music in each game is stored differently. You can try perusing the music hacking tutorials over on RHDN to see if you can figure anything out but there hasn't been much time spent on music hacking outside of Super Mario Bros. You definitely won't be able to import music, unless you write a custom importer for your game.
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Old 01-06-2011, 01:50 AM   #6
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Thanks for the help. I will look into the process for the popular games. Other than that I will just worry about music and level adding when I come to it.
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