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Tails Adventure - SMS Deluxe (Update - v1.5)
Post Posted: Tue Jul 19, 2016 10:48 pm
Last edited by freezingicekirby on Fri Aug 25, 2017 2:41 pm; edited 11 times in total
EDIT~ I decided to retype the description in order to spruce things up. My previous write-up can be found in the quote below.

===================

The purpose of this project is to try and improve the GG2SMS patch and make the game look as authentic as possible. When the game is converted to a Master System rom, you see things you were never meant to see before, and as such the game will look glitchy, messed up, or incomplete at times. This patch fixes all (if not, most) of these instances, so it looks like this was how the game was meant to be played all along.

Some examples as to what I mean, as well as my changes to make things look better.





I also took the liberty to try and fix up other things within the game, to improve the player experience as much as possible. For example, I changed the iffy-looking Remote Robot to resemble the T-Pup from the comics...



Improved the water in Cavern Island so it's no longer ugly and inconsistent with the rest of the game.



Changed the colors of certain enemies to improve their look...



And other general improvements to make the game look the best it can. Other note-worthy changes include some bug fixes, the removal of the Password system in-favor of using saves (you now save the game by choosing "Save" within Tails' House), among other things.

A big thanks to those whose additional efforts went into improve this patch further, including NextVolume (GG2SMS 1.0), Revo (GG2SMS 1.1), Vingazole (GG2SMS 1.2), and Supper, for creating the Tails Adventure Level Editor Suite (none of this would've been possible without it), and for helping me with a few other things to improve my patch in ways I never thought possible. And a big thanks to everyone else who chipped in with their input and suggestions in order to help me improve this patch even further!

To use this patch, download the ZIP file attached to this post. Instructions on how to patch your rom is included in the zip.

Enjoy!

===================

FOR EVERDRIVE USERS

BcnAbel76 was kind enough to provide a modified patch that supports the Genesis/Mega Drive controller. Upon startup, it will detect automatically what you're using, so now this can be used on something like an Everdrive flash cart. The file below has been updated to include it.

===================

Quote
OLD DESCRIPTION~

Hey everyone! Apologies for a lack of introduction, but I've never been good with that sort of thing so I figured I'd just jump straight into what I came here to show off.

Basically, I've been working on a romhack to improve the Master System version of Tails Adventure. Using the Tails Adventure Level Editor Suite (TALES), I tried to eliminate most (if not, all) of the issues regarding the camera showing things on the edge of the map you were never intended to see before (which often lead to the map looking messed up or incomplete). The idea's to correct this so the stages appear perfectly normal. A few example pictures of what I mean are included below ("Map FIxing")

I tried to fix every single stage that had this issue, so now all the stages look pretty authentic (at my opinion, anyway). Granted, I did have to use certain tricks to accomplish this at times, like shortening or adjusting the terrain in a few parts and whatnot... but overall, these changes are minor, nor do they affect the overall feel of the game.

I also tried to improve other things, too; the world map is finally complete and reaches the whole screen (example shown below), the menu when at Tails' House has a brick border to make things look nice (also shown below), and a few other improvements to the graphics here and there (mostly minor things, so I've no example for that). I also redesigned the Remote Robot to somewhat resemble the T-Pup, though this was mostly done because I felt the original graphics for the Remote Robot were kinda "off", in a manner of speaking.

The romhack is pretty much complete, unless I decide to go in and make other changes or improvements. In any case, the patch is attached to this post and ready for anyone to use (just follow the readme instructions and you're good to go). Just make sure you use an unpatched Tails Adventure Game Gear rom.

And by all means, please tell me what you guys think of it! Does it get the job done well enough? Is there anything I can improve? Have any suggestions? By all means, please let me know.

Also, I'm calling it "SMS Deluxe" simply because I thought it sounded cool (I'm secretly five-years old).

For now, I hope you all enjoy~

(Special thanks to NextVolume, Revo, and Vingazole for the SMS patches that went into this. Also big thanks to Supper for creating Tales, as this would've never been possible without it.)

One thing to note (this is mentioned in the change log, but I'll go ahead and post it here, anyway) is that this patch includes the other SMS patches inside it... but only up to version 1.2. 1.3 wasn't used because it messes up the Sea Fox menu at Tails' House, so I figured I'd just go ahead and leave it out

==============
EDIT~

I probably should've mentioned this earlier, so I'll just put it here.

Inside the ZIP folder are five items; Lunar IPS (inside the folder "items"), the patch (also inside the items folder), the changelog text file, Patcher.bat, and the ReadMe.

To make things easier, I created the Patcher.bat to automatically rename the Game Gear rom (assuming it's in the folder) to "TA.sms", as well as open up Lunar IPS with the patch already selected. You just need to click on TA.sms when it asks you to and then you're done!

I did this for those who might not have file extensions turned on (because if you don't change it to .sms, the colors will be horribly screwed up). To any mods out there, let me know if I should just post the patch itself and not all the other stuff.


===================

A full list of most, if not all of the changes can be found here. You can also find this in the Change Log.txt included in the zip.

Quote

=================================================
Tails Adventure Change Log
=================================================

(*) indicates notes which can be found at the end of the document.

---------------------------

General changes and patches

- "Raido" was changed to "Radio"

- "Rocket Booter" was changed to "Rocket Booster" in both the item selection menu and pop-up item window when you find it.

- Text in the item windows were centered.

- Remote Robot received a graphical overhaul. He now looks more canine-like, inspired by the T-Pup from the comics. He is still referred to by the same name, however.

- The items "Sonic", "Knuckles", and "Fang" were given new graphics and name changes. They are now "Spin Dash", "Super Punch", and "Lucky Charm".

- The graphical error which made Tails look like he had a third shoe when throwing a bomb while jumping in the air has been fixed.

- Tails' shoes no longer wiggle when flying at full power.

- Various minor graphical edits to Tails to keep consistency between frames.

- Minor graphical fix for the Sea Fox (literally two pixels).

- The flight guage turns red when Tails starts to get worn out.

- The game no longer uses passwords. It now uses a save feature to record your progresses. You must hit "Save" at Tails' House in order to save your progress.

---------------------------

Sega Logo Screen

- New Sega Logo to replace the (at my opinion) ugly one.

- "TM" was removed because I had to use its space for the new logo.

---------------------------

Intro Cutscene

- Added additional tiles to the top of the screen.

- Changed the palette of the forest-burning robot from green to purple. (*1)

---------------------------

Title Screen

- "SMS Deluxe 1.4" was added to the title screen.

- "TM" and a few other map tiles were removed and then changed to make way for the above.

- "Continue" was changed to "Load".


---------------------------

World Map

- Water was extended across the entire screen.

- Green Island and Cavern Island were pushed out so things aren't so cluttered anymore.

- The dolphin on the right side of the screen was moved to a new location.

- Text box was repositioned.

- A few added bits of detail here and there to spruce things up a bit.


---------------------------

Tails' House/Sea Fox/Password menu

- Added a brick border.

- Palette was repaired to match the original as much as possible.

- "Cont." was changed to "Save".

- When entering a subscreen, all options except "Exit" are blacked out.

- Password menu no longer exists. Hitting "Save" keeps you on the same screen but saves your progress.


---------------------------

Poloy Forest

Area 1

- Shortened the small room (the one you push the spring into) to fix the issue of seeing looping map tiles outside of the intended vieweing space. (*2)

- Finished the top of the screen to add more tree detail.

- Fixed one tile so it matches better with its surroundings.


Area 2

- The rock steps right before entering 1-3 were altered.


Area 3

- Entrance was lowered to hide a "Fix" for the right side of the screen.

- An invisible ceiling prevents you from flying up the large gap right above the entrance.

- Boss palette was changed (from green to purple) to match his look in the intro cutscene. (*1)

- Music cue was changed to the exact moment the screen begins scrolling when you approach the boss.

---------------------------

Caron Forest

- Changed the music of this area to the theme heard in Polly Mt. 1. (*3)


Area 1

- The area around the pushable rock and the entrance to area 2 were moved to the left slightly to help hide looping map tiles.


Area 2

- Added more tiles to the bottom of the stage to make things look more complete.

---------------------------

Volcanic Tunnel

- Enemy palette for Bomber Mouse and Bat were changed from green to purple.


Area 1

- Minor graphical edits to the top right of the screen.


Area 2

- Slight altercation to the exit.


Area 3

- Reduced the breakable bricks (the ones that require the Large Bomb) from seven to four.

- Boss' palette for the head was altered to more closely resemble the body.

---------------------------

Polly Mt. 1


Area 1

- Altered the entrance slightly.

- Removed the small gap under the elevator to help hide unfixable graphical errors on the bottom-right of the screen.

- Area to the left of the middle exit was altered slightly to hide another fix for the right side of the screen.

- Added an extra tile on the roof of the area with the final three jumping ducks (right below the spikes). (*4)


Area 2 (path to the boss)

- Altered a small portion of the stage (above the entrance) to hide another fix for the right-most exit of the stage.


Area 3 (The boss)

- Added a wall to the right of the entrance to make it look like that side of the area is closed off.

- Fixed the horizon so the colors mesh better.

- Speedy's position was changed so he goes off the screen during the cutscene again.

- Tails' position was changed so he more closely follows Speedy's movement during the cutscene mentioned above.


Area 4

- Moved a big portion of the left side of the stage layout to help fix looping map tiles on the far right side of the map.

---------------------------

Polly Mt. 2

Area 1

- Moved the entrance to the right slightly to, yet again, hide a fix for the right side of the screen.


Area 2

- Nothing major. Just moved the bottom warp trigger a bit.

---------------------------

Lake Rocky

Area 1

- Moved both entrances on the right side to the left a bit to hide the usual looping map tiles.


Area 2

- Changed the camera boundary on the bottom, and altered the graphics on the right entrance a bit.


Area 3 (Boss)

- Changed both the left, top, and bottom camera boundaries to hide another fix for the right side of the screen, and to prevent the camera from moving up and down during the boss fight.

- Removed the ocean floor (it's all water now).


Area 4 (Path to Coco Island 1)

- Moved the exit slightly.

- Added onto the bottom of the floor (one of the rare instances I could do that instead of changing camera boundaries and warp triggers).


Area 5 (Path to Coco Island 2)

- Changed the entrance slightly and adjusted the camera boundary to hide another fix for the right side of the screen.

- Miniboss was moved forward a tiny bit to compensate for camera boundary/warp trigger edits.


Area 6 (Path to Coco Island 3)

- Added more tiles onto the bottom of the screen.


Area 7

- Moved the warp triggers.


Area 8 (Path to Lake Crystal 1)

- Added more tiles to the bottom of the stage

- Edited the layout of the left side of the stage slightly to fix more screen wrapping issues on the right side.

- Removed those mine hazard dispensers and replaced them with just normal mines.

- Altered the exit on the very top to be more consistent with the next area.


Area 9 (Path to Lake Crystal 2)

- An unseeable change at the top left to fix looping tiles on the right near the exit.

---------------------------

Lake Crystal

Area 1

- Shortened the final jump before the exit to the next area by one tile (16 pixels).


Area 2

- Fixed a couple of wrong tile placements.

- Moved the final warp trigger to the left slightly.

---------------------------

Green Island

- Music was changed to what would normally be heard in Caron Forest. (*3)


Area 1

- Moved the right map trigger to the left slightly (just to reiterate, whenever I do this, it's to help hide the usual looping map tiles from the player's view).


Area 2

- Altered the stage layout around the Chaos Emerald. (*5)

- The tunnel the Remote Robot goes through to get the aforementioned item was changed slightly (because of camera boundary changes and hiding looping map tiles once again).

- Also regarding the above, the layout was slightly changed to accomodate this. And of course, the small enemy and beehive were moved, too.

---------------------------

Cavern Island

- Palettes for the Bomber Mouse and Bat enemies were changed from green to purple.

- Water has been completely reworked to be more consistent with the rest of the game. It also has a checkered effect whenever Tails jumps into any bodies of water to simulate him actually being underwater.


Area 1

- Nothing major, outside of the usual camera boundary change and warp trigger adjustment.


Area 2

- Nothing major again except a slight camera boundary adjustment.


Area 3 (Boss)

- Added tiles on the bottom of the screen.

- Camera boundaries were altered so the screen can't scroll up or down now.

- Warp Tile was added to the very end of the room so you no longer have to backtrack.

---------------------------

Coco Island


Area 1

- The exit was changed so you "Drop" into the next area now.


Area 2

- Warp trigger at the beginning was altered slightly.

- More camera boundary changes to hide a fix for the right side of the screen.


Area 3 (Boss)

- Altered the camera boundaries to hide more looping tiles on the right again.

- Changed the rock above the boss to a previously-unused metal object graphic.

---------------------------

Battle Fortress 1

Area 1

- More Camera boundary altering. Camera can't scroll up or down as much anymore (couldn't be helped).


Area 2

- Added some extra tiles on the bottom of the screen.

- Changed the top-left portion of the ship to fix the right side (thankfully it doesn't matter this time if it's hidden or not).

---------------------------

Battle Fortress 2

Area 1

- Mostly just camera boundary changes.


Area 2

- The crouching duck enemies and the layout around them were changed. (*6)

- The crouching duck enemy to the bottom-right of the stage was repositoned elsewhere, and the hole he was in was removed completely. (*7)

- The top-right area was changed to fix more looping map tiles.

- The exit was changed so you now have to fly up.


Area 3 (Boss)

- The outside of the tower was changed slightly so it no longer appears on the right side of the screen (map looping and all) when Tails beats the final boss and exits the stage.

---------------------------

Credits Screen

- "Credits Robot" was redesigned to match the new Remote Robot.

- Shortened the "Special Thanks" section so I could squeeze in some of my own credits. All the names are still present, however (they just use two lines now instead of one).

- Credits listing everyone who helped in the making of this patch, including those who worked on the 1.0, 1.1, and 1.2 SMS patch, and the person who created the Tales Adventure Level Editor Suite. Also a credit to myself for changing the levels/graphics.


---------------------------

Original Game Gear 2 Sega Myster System Patch

- 1.0, which allowed the game to be played as a Master System game. Credit for this goes to nextvolume.

- 1.1, which I believed changed some button mappings while on the world map and title screen. Credit goes to Revo.

- 1.2, which moved the UI (coins, weapon, and fly meter) to the top-left corner. Credit goes to Vingazole

----------------------------

My Wishlist (or "Things I'd like to do, but can't because I'm too dumb to figure out these things on my own")

- Use the new "Hotswap" item system. It works great when the rom is Game Gear, but when converted to Master System, it breaks the game by denying you to enter the pause menu, thus rendering the game impossible to finish. It's been determined that the GG2SMS patch might be what's interfering with it, and if that's true, then there's nothing that can be done.

----------------------------

NOTES

(*1)
To me, the original green palette didn't look proper, while the purple palette made him look much better (at my opinion, anyway). This change was also applied to a few other enemies I felt also looked improper.


(*2)
Because the screen viewing space was increased after converting the Game Gear rom to a Master System rom, you now see things outside of the map you weren't supposed to before. The map loops around, so tiles on the far left appear on the far right side, making things look messed up as a result (the same happens to the bottom... but not the top or left sides, oddly enough). To correct this, I changed the camera boundaries so the game knows not to move the camera too far, hiding this from your view now. Unfortunately, sometimes this messes with the stage layout, so occasionally the stage itself had to be altered to compensate. For the most part, these changes are incredibly minor and do not affect the overall experience of the game.


(*3)
This was done because not much happens in Caron Forest, so I felt its unique (and rather great) track was wasted on it. There's more going on in Green Island, so I felt it was more appropriate there.


(*4)
Jumping up to this area before the change would make Tails grab an invisible ledge, getting you stuck in the geometry and forcing you to reset the game (unless you used the Remote Robot glitch to get you out of it).


(*5)
In the original Game Gear version, you couldn't see the item chest containing the Chaos Emerald unless you panned the screen up. When changed into a Master System game and the vieweing area was expanded, it could be seen as plain as day, making it too obvious there were more items to be found here. To fix this, I altered that small area so you yet again have to pan the camera up in order to see it. Some spikes were left where they were to be barely visible, to at least give the player a hint that something might be up there...


(*6)
The crouching duck enemies on the bottom literally couldn't shoot you at all from where they were previously standing. They were brought up to make them an actual threat. The rest of the layout had to be changed as a result.


(*7)
Much like the two enemies in note *5, this crouching duck enemy couldn't hit you at all, either. He was moved elsewhere to make him an obstacle you'll have to deal with if you fall down into the bottom-right area. Also, his little hole-in-the-wall was removed to hide the usual looping map tiles.


======================

Version 1.1

- Adjusted the camera boundary and/or warp triggers in...
- Poloy Forest (Map 1 and 2)
- Caron Forest (Map 1)
- Volcanic Tunnel (Map 2)
- Lake Rocky (Map 1, 4, and 7)
- Lake Crystal (Map 1 and 2)
- Green Island (Map 1)
- Coco Island (Map 1)

- Added extra tree tiles on the top of the screen in...
- Caron Forest (Map 2)
- Green Island (Map 1)

- Adjusted the spawn point in Coco Island Map 2.

- Minor adjustment to the large Sega logo at the beginning of the game.

- Updated the Changelog to include something I forgot to mention I changed (Lake Rocky, map 8).

======================

Version 1.2

- Junk successfully removed from the bottom of the menu at Tails' House, as well as the junk on the credits screen.

- Boss fight against the birds on that boat (the one before Green Island) was fixed so the left side doesn't appear all screwy anymore.

- Slight edit to Tails' graphics when in full flight mode.

- Updated the graphics for the Remote Robot you see when it's about to transform into the Sea Fox.

- Fixed a broken warp trigger in Lake Rocky Map 8 (caused by me, actually... oops!)

- Fixed some graphics in Lake Rocky that would flicker for some reason.

=======================

Version 1.3

- Reworked the water in Cavern Islands. It's now solid, darker, and has a checkered effect when Tails moves around in it.

- Fixed the camera boundary at the end of the long area where you fight the boss. I also added a warp tile at the end, so you no longer have to trek all the way back just to get to the world map.

=======================

Version 1.4

- Green Island and Cavern Island were moved outwards a bit.

- The text box on the world map has been repositioned.

- One dolphin on the world map has been relocated.

- The palette and some of the graphics inside Tails' House were improved.

- The HUD can now be seen at all times when pressing the Pause button, correcting an issue unintentionally caused by the GG2SMS patch.

- THe horizon in Polly Mountain 1-3 (Boss Room) has been fixed.

- The items "Sonic", "Knuckles", and "Fang" have been renamed to "Spin Dash", "Super Punch", and "Lucky Charm". Their graphics were also changed, but they function exactly as before.

- The credits were updated.

========================

Version 1.5

- The Flicky on the right side of the screen during the intro has been relocated to fix another goof unintentionally caused by the GG2SMS patch.

- Some of the terrain during the intro has also been altered to accommodate the above change.

- The credits screen itself was altered to hide the characters when they walk/fly off camera.

- Credits graphic was widened one tile.

- The text during the credits was updated once again.

- Tails' graphics were altered slightly.

=========================

Version 1.5c

- BcnAbel76 created new code which allows the game to detect on start-up whether or not you're using a Master System or Genesis/Mega Drive controller. This will prove useful if you're using something like an Everdrive flash cart. Big thanks to him for this one!


=========================
Tails Adventure SMS Deluxe v1.5c.zip (182.8 KB)
Tails Adventure SMS Deluxe v.1.5c

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Post Posted: Wed Jul 20, 2016 8:15 am
Wow, this is awesome! Since I know the game I wished for something like this :)
Will definitely give this a shot as soon as I find the time.
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 20, 2016 4:29 pm
Thank you! Let me know what you think of it when you do!

By the way, for you or anyone else who might visit this topic, I do have a question for all of ya. I mentioned in my original post I redesigned the Remote Robot to be more canine-like, but after thinking about it, do you guys think I should've left it alone? Admittedly, it started out as changing it to make it look better and resemble its icon, but then I went crazy and decide to go T-Pup inspired.

I attached a GIF to this post with the image of all three versions of the Remote Robot. Left is the original, middle is the canine-version, while the one of the right resembles the item icon. Let me know what you guys think.
All.gif (177.86 KB)
Remote Robot comparisons
All.gif

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Post Posted: Wed Jul 20, 2016 8:37 pm
Patch has been updated to version 1.1. Mostly minor stuff, but things I felt needed to be done. The updated patch can be found on the original post.

List of changes include...

- Adjusted the camera boundary and/or warp triggers in...
* Poloy Forest (Map 1 and 2)
* Caron Forest (Map 1)
* Volcanic Tunnel (Map 2)
* Lake Rocky (Map 1, 4, and 7)
* Lake Crystal (Map 1 and 2)
* Green Island (Map 1)
* Coco Island (Map 1)

- Added extra tree tiles on the top of the screen in...
* Caron Forest (Map 2)
* Green Island (Map 1)

- Adjusted the spawn point in Coco Island Map 2.

- Minor adjustment to the large Sega logo at the beginning of the game.
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 20, 2016 9:46 pm
I won't be able to test the game until you might have finished it, so I hope someone knowing the game better not spending the summer days at the beach will give you some input and feedback. Still very pleased by your work :)
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Post Posted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:38 pm
This looks cool! Tested and working on both SMS & Genesis via Everdrives.
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Post Posted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 5:29 pm
@ Badsector

It is supposed to be a finished patch. It's just that when I went looking over the files again last night, I noticed a few things I kinda goofed up on. All those camera boundary/warp trigger changes were things I changed before, but I noticed I moved them a little too far (probably back when I was still learning the program) so I decided to correct that. As for the tree tiles, that's something I did in all the other forest stages, but I accidentally missed them in these two areas. Hopefully this'll be the final time I update the patch, unless I or someone else reports another oversight.

@RetroRGB

I'm glad you like it! If you run into any issues, by all means please let me know.
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Post Posted: Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:42 am
Wow, great work! You've got an eye for details and a lot of patience. I did a quick playthrough of the whole game, and I hope you'll take it as a compliment that I didn't notice most of the changes ;)

I did spot a few issues, most of which originate from the GG->SMS patch:
* A couple of bosses reveal some HUD sprites that are supposed to be "hidden" in the corner of the screen. This is caused by the brute-force method the conversion patch uses to turn on left column blanking, which doesn't work when line interrupts are enabled. If you hex edit address 0x1C7F in the ROM to 0x26 (instead of 0x06), it should fix this without causing other issues, although I didn't test much.
* The row of garbage in Tails' House is caused by one of the tilemaps being set to the wrong height, causing the game to draw the top of the next one in the list. Fix it by changing 0x2C4D1 to 0x12.
* The garbage on the credits is caused by the same issue. Fix by changing 0x764B to 0x12.
* When you pause the game, the HUD is supposed to appear in front of any foreground tiles that have covered it up during gameplay. However, the conversion patch moved the HUD, so the game doesn't change the priority of the right tiles and it stays covered. Probably easy to fix; I'll look into it later.
* I get occasional flickering that I've never had occur on the original game (at least in MEKA). This might be related to the patch's brute-force video mode stuff I mentioned, but I'm not sure.
* In Coco Island, when I picked up the Chaos Emerald and Teleport Device, the graphic for the Large Bomb displayed instead of the appropriate icons. This might be a bug with Tales, but I've never seen it happen before so I'm not sure.
* In Tails' max-power flying animation, one of his socks is still a little twitchy.

Most of these fixes should get incorporated into a future version of the SMS->GG patch. I know I fixed a couple of them for 1.3, but I see that caused some problems I didn't know about. It's always something :(

Regarding some of the stuff on your wishlist:
Quote
- Find a way to increase the amount of squares I can use when updating graphics.

This is completely possible and I'm pretty sure I coded it, but I never added an option for it to the GUI. Will put it in the next release, whenever that is. (Forgive the lack of updates, I'm trying and failing to juggle Tales with several other projects...)

Quote
- Fix the debree graphic when blowing up a breakable rock in Polly Mt. 2. It doesn't seem to want to change, even when I replace the graphic in the editor.

The game keeps a special list of which debris piece goes with which area. I didn't realize this until fairly late in development and never got around to adding support for it. I'll see if I can bodge something in in the near future. If you'd like to try to fix it yourself in the meanwhile, the relevant list is at 0x38FD8-0x38FFF. It's just an array of two-byte addresses of the debris graphic for each area, ordered by internal area ID; I think PM2's entry is at 0x38FE2-0x38FE3. I'm not sure which graphic you want to replace it with, but overwriting those bytes with any of the surrounding entries should change things.

Quote
- Use the new "Hotswap" item system. It works great when the rom is Game Gear, but when converted to Master System, it breaks the game and renders it impossible to finish.

Haven't checked at all, but since IIRC the hotswap patch takes up almost all of the unused space in one of the banks, my guess would be that the conversion patch's extra code tries to go in the same spot and ends up crashing the game. If that's the case, it may or may not be an easy fix, but I'm guessing not.

Quote
- Correct the colors when entering into the dock menu at Tails' House.

Not sure what you're referring to here -- it seems fine to me?

Quote
- Similar to the above, a color gets removed on the world map for some reason (light blue).

Did you adjust the cycling palette? I'm afraid I don't really know much about how the conversion patch handles the colors.

Personally, I think the new Remote Robot sprites are great, but if you decide to use the less-modified version instead, I'd suggest you take some pixels off the bottom of the muzzle -- to me it looks a bit more "beard" than "jaw". Maybe erase the black line, or move it up a row?

All in all, excellent job. Thanks for putting so much effort into this! It's very gratifying to see this game has some fans after all :)
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Post Posted: Sat Jul 23, 2016 7:03 pm
@Supper

First off, thanks for your very detailed input on my hack! I really appreciate it! And of course, since we're here, I want to give thanks to you for making TALES in the first place. It's put together so well and really easy to use, which is probably why I had such a fun time working on this (that, and this is a favorite game of mine, so I was inspired to try once I found your editor).

Quote
Hex editing stuff

I'll admit, I've never hex edited stuff like this before, so I had to look up how to do it so I could try it out for myself. Amazingly, it was easier than I thought, and when I changed the numbers you told me to fix, it seems to have worked without any issues at all! I'll definitely apply this in my next update to this patch.

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When you pause the game, the HUD is supposed to appear in front of any foreground tiles that have covered it up during gameplay. However, the conversion patch moved the HUD, so the game doesn't change the priority of the right tiles and it stays covered. Probably easy to fix; I'll look into it later.

Ahh, I didn't know that. To be honest, I thought it was just an emulator issue. Wish I could help, but unfortunately this hex editing stuff is pretty much over my head... I wouldn't even know where to begin to look. Good luck on that one~

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In Coco Island, when I picked up the Chaos Emerald and Teleport Device, the graphic for the Large Bomb displayed instead of the appropriate icons. This might be a bug with Tales, but I've never seen it happen before so I'm not sure.

Really? That's odd. I just tried it myself, and the proper graphics show up for me (both in the edited Game Gear rom and converted Master System rom). Not sure what I could do to fix this, I'm afraid. Sorry about that. :(

Quote
* In Tails' max-power flying animation, one of his socks is still a little twitchy.

Yeah, I seen that one. I initially decided to keep it, since I felt that one made sense (along with the fur & hair on his face)... but looking back, I should probably change it, too.

Quote
This is completely possible and I'm pretty sure I coded it, but I never added an option for it to the GUI. Will put it in the next release, whenever that is. (Forgive the lack of updates, I'm trying and failing to juggle Tales with several other projects...)

Hey, no worries! Like I said above, I'm more than appreciative of the effort you've put into Tales so far. Besides, when it comes to the changes I made to the Sega logo and world map screen, I managed to just barely squeeze in the things I wanted to do or include while still keeping them looking natural (I'm stubborn, so I wasn't about to let that stop me -lol-). I've got no complaints. :)

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Haven't checked at all, but since IIRC the hotswap patch takes up almost all of the unused space in one of the banks, my guess would be that the conversion patch's extra code tries to go in the same spot and ends up crashing the game. If that's the case, it may or may not be an easy fix, but I'm guessing not.

It doesn't necessarily crash so much that it actually just makes Tails flicker once when you press start, but then nothing shows up and the game doesn't pause (almost like you never pressed the start button at all). I just assumed it had something to do with the GG-to-SMS patch that repositioned the hud.

Quote
Did you adjust the cycling palette? I'm afraid I don't really know much about how the conversion patch handles the colors.

Nahh, I didn't touch that one at all (I did change one palette, but it had nothing to do with the World Map palette). I think it does have to do with the Master System conversion. If anything, I can always toy around with some different colors and see if I can change it to something that at least closely resembles it.


I'll apply these changes to my version of the hack and hopefully get it out here soon. Good luck with your own projects, and yet again, thanks for the input!
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 24, 2016 4:16 pm
Another awesome addition to the GG2SMS hacks. I wish there were more!
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:01 pm
I've updated the patch to version 1.2! Big thanks to Supper for giving me the information to improve the patch.

Changes include...

- Junk successfully removed from the bottom of the menu at Tails' House, as well as the junk on the credits screen.

- Boss fight against the birds on that boat (the one before Green Island) was fixed so the left side doesn't appear all screwy anymore.

- Slight edit to Tails' graphics when in full flight mode.

- Updated the graphics for the Remote Robot you see when it's about to transform into the Sea Fox.

- Fixed a broken warp trigger in Lake Rocky Map 8 (caused by me, actually... oops!)

- Fixed some graphics in Lake Rocky that would "Flicker" for some reason.


NOTE - A glitch seems to occur when finding certain items (particularly the ones in Coco Island). It seems that when obtaining the Chaos Emerald and/or the Teleport item, sometimes their icon will get replaced by the one used for the Giant Bomb. It seems to be random, as I tried it once and the icon appeared normal, yet when I tried it the second time, it happened. I've no idea how to fix this, so please accept my apologies. With that said, this just mixed up the icons; the items themselves will still work as-intended, and the right icon will show up in the menu at Tails House and when you have it equipped on the field.


1.2 can be found in both this and the original post.
compare.png (16.23 KB)
Menu comparison (1.1 to 1.2)
compare.png
Tails Adventure SMS Deluxe (1.2).zip (181.06 KB)
SMS Deluxe Patch 1.2

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Post Posted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 7:59 pm
Do you have any other GG conversions you're thinking about fixing up or do you just like Tails Adventure that much?
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Post Posted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:49 pm
Last edited by freezingicekirby on Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:05 pm; edited 2 times in total
Unfortunately, I can't say that I do, mostly for two good reasons;

1) The only reason I managed to pull this off in the first place was because of the editor Supper made. Without TALES, there's no way I could've managed it at all since romhacking with hex editors and whatnot is waaaaay over my head. (For that matter, I don't even remotely understand how he or the other GG2SMS contributors figured out half the stuff that went into their patches... they certainly have more patience and brain power than me.)

2) A lot of it does have to do with the fact that not only is Tails Adventure one of my favorite games, but ol' Tails himself is also on my list of favorite characters, too. So I guess it was a labor of love, in a manner of speaking.

Granted, this ain't the first time I went to some great lengths to do something for other favorite characters of mine (like patching them into games they were originally never a part of in the first place)~

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mf1G2f7EPcU
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Post Posted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:51 pm
Wow! It's so hard coding patches.

Good Job! Many thanks ;)
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 3:26 am
Awesome work!!
btw, I really like the middle remote robot the best. :)
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 8:24 pm
Quote
* When you pause the game, the HUD is supposed to appear in front of any foreground tiles that have covered it up during gameplay. However, the conversion patch moved the HUD, so the game doesn't change the priority of the right tiles and it stays covered.


I decided to try and look into fixing this issue myself, even though I'm not anywhere near remotely qualified to do such a thing... but I thought I'd give it a shot, just so I could (in some way) contribute to the official GG2SMS patch if I managed to succeed. Using the hex editor, I compared versions of the said patch (1.1 and 1.2) to see what was changed and where things were located, then used MEKA to apply particular changes to the game in real time, to hopefully get the results I was looking for.

And after about five hours later, I.... uh.... made absolutely no progress whatsoever!

Well, that's not true... I did actually manage to do the following; crash the game, cause the graphics to completely bug out (often crashing the game, too), teleport Tails to the Return-to-Dock map (which played the usual animation then softlocked), Game Over screen, and Sega Logo intro, cause Tails to repeatedly short jump with no way of stopping him, cause the floor to have no collision, make the Flight Gauge bar constantly scroll to the left (looping around whenever it reached the edge), and somehow managed to reduce the framerate to 15!

(Most of you are probably wondering "How the heck did you manage ALL of that!?" And the answer is simple; it's what happens when an idiot tries to do something way out of his league. -lol-)

So... I think I have an announcement to make; unless I made a boo-boo somewhere and I go back in and fix it, or I decide to edit the graphics again in some way, this hack is to be considered complete. As I found out, I'm not capable of hacking the game myself with my utter lack of experience, so in the future if the official GG2SMS patch fixes the HUD, then I'll happily add it to mine. Otherwise, it's all way over my head, so my little "SMS Deluxe" unofficial patch is about as good as it's going to get.

Hey, can't damn me for trying, right?

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Post Posted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 8:40 pm
Hex editing is a disastrous, yet bizarrely popular, way to hack a game. You need to go to the code and reverse engineer how it adjusts the priorities, then modify it. The end result may end up being a few bytes to modify the range of tiles it alters, ot it may be much more involved. Either way, it's probably a few hours' work for someone experienced. So don't get disheartened that you weren't successful...
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Post Posted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 11:20 pm
I've been thinking about making another change to the game again. This time, to the water inside Cavern Island. Personally, I've never really cared for how they handled the graphics for Tails going into the water and moving around it, so I thought about trying to fix it, if possible

I decided to go with a solid color, similar to how Lake Rocky does it. After messing around with it for a while, I'm a bit on the fence regarding whether or not I should go with it. On one hand, I think it looks nicer... but on the other hand, I think it kinda looks a little too flat and takes away from the overall design of the stage.

What do you guys think?

(Old)


(New)


(Demonstration)


Any input would be greatly appreciated!

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Post Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 11:24 am
The original water is super ugly, but it seems a shame to go completely flat - could you add in some texture?
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Post Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 1:07 pm
Yeah, the original style is really not impressive, and even flat it looks a lot better. But i think it's possible to improve a little bit more.
Try adding some lighter blue spots on the tiles.
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Post Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 8:17 pm
Thanks for your input! I have been experimenting with different ways to spruce it up a bit, because you're both right, it definitely needs something to go along with it. Even Lake Rocky had certain things in the background so you weren't just looking at plain blue water the whole time.

Though I'm still on the drawing board regarding what I want to go with, I have come up with a few things I kinda like. One involves what I'd sorta describe as an underwater fence, just to have something to look at while moving. (In hindsight, I should probably remove the brighter color on the ''fence'', since it does make things look a bit too bright.)



The other I thought about having pixels scattered around to sorta resemble tiny bubbles, to show that there's movement in the water or something. I think I like this one more, though if I go with it I'll probably try to make the surface of the water more defined (as it is now, it meshes a little too much, imo).



I'm still thinking about other possibilities, but let me know what you guys think of these so far.

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Post Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 11:13 pm
Last edited by TinchoDJ on Wed Aug 03, 2016 8:41 am; edited 1 time in total
What about a checkered, translucent design? Something like the water in Sonic The Hedgehog's Jungle Zone. That is, leaving every other pixel transparent and creating a checkered pattern.
extralife9.png (3.95 KB)
extralife9.png

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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 12:32 am
@TinchoDJ

I've seen that sort of technique before, but admittedly I never really thought about trying it. I decided to give it a go, and I'll admit I actually kinda like it! It makes the water darker, so it looks more appropriate to the environment, and putting it in the foreground (as opposed to the other examples) makes it all the more like what it was before, but much more visually appealing.

I'm not sure if I'll go with it yet, but I'll definitely keep it in mind. Thanks!





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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 6:33 am
The first time I've ever seen the technique being used was in Taz-Mania for the Master System. Yes, it's easily noticeable that it's not alpha transparency (impossible on such limited system) but just a checkered pattern. But still it gives the illusion of translucency and looks amazing IMHO.
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 7:43 am
I like the checkered water and the one with the bubbles most :)
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 9:14 am
you could use a different pattern instead a checkered 50% and animate the tiles too, thus making that 'less darkening' while still retaining the effect...

edit: also, on a real CRT screen, this looks much nicer... see the blocks' shadows on my MARKanoIIId demo...
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 4:10 pm
I quite like the dithered version.

Speaking of CRTs, though, be aware that larger areas with 1 by 1 pixel dithering can produce strange-looking diagonal lines of artifacts when someone connects the console to a CRT via RF cable. So it might be better to have a dither pattern with each square being 2 pixels wide (but still 1 pixel high).
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 4:27 pm
A lot of Mega Drive games (at almost the same resolution) went with vertical lines rather than checkerboard to avoid the artifacts, but the emulated result suffers. I'd go for the checkerboard pseudo-transparency, it seems like a big improvement worth back porting to the GG version.
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 5:40 pm
The checkered pattern is the best one.
Especially because it gives the idea that the character is submerged in water, instead of in front of it.

Does any game animates these kinds of tiles? It should give a very cool effect, to have the waving of checkered pattern in the tiles.
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 5:46 pm
Last edited by freezingicekirby on Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:34 am; edited 1 time in total
I think I understand what you guys are saying. To be honest, things like what it'd look like on a CRT never crossed my mind before.

Using Kagesan's advice, I improved the checkerboard water by going 2x1 for the pixels, instead of one blank, one solid throughout..



I also added different colors to it, so it has the appearance of actual movement, instead of it being completely stationary like before.



Personally, I think this is the best one yet. It resembles how the game did it before, but looks a lot nicer. You guys think this one will work?

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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 8:56 pm
I think this one has too much movement. it looks like all the water is flowing down the screen like a water fall.
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 10:39 pm
I'm afraid I'm at a bit of a loss then. I'll think on it and tinker around with it some more, then perhaps get back to it in a few days or so.
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 10:59 pm
The stretched grid probably ought to be the other way round (vertical gaps) to get the best blending effect on a CRT/RF signal. Do you have any control over the palette effect - the number of colours used, the speed? It might look better a bit slower.
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Post Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:09 pm
Hello, I've never played this game before.

I try your patched game, and It's awesome.
I saw on youtube the first patched version.

I found last water effect really good.
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 12:56 am
Maxim wrote
The stretched grid probably ought to be the other way round (vertical gaps) to get the best blending effect on a CRT/RF signal. Do you have any control over the palette effect - the number of colours used, the speed? It might look better a bit slower.

I can control the palette, but because the Master System doesn't have as many colors as the Game Gear, it doesn't always work out. Basically, it's the problem I have with the world map; when it's a Game Gear rom, it looks normal... but as a Master System rom, one color seems to disappear because it's too close to another, so they end up looking the same in the end. Even when I tried to change it, it just didn't work and ended up looking way too bright... I'm afraid blue, dark blue, and bright blue might just have to be what we have to live with, I'm afraid. :(

As for the speed, TALES doesn't have that option, so I'd have to use a hex editor to change that... and considering how well my last hacking attempt went, let's just say that's probably not going to get changed with me behind the wheel.

In any case, I rotated the water tile by 90 degrees, so they're vertical lines now. I also altered the surface of the water a bit, just so it's more slimmer. Here's an example of what it looks like now.




Also, glad to hear you enjoyed this, BcnAbel76!
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:26 am
I liked this one better, not too busy, the horizontal ones looked a bit too much, imho.
Sonic's Jungle Zone, also use different tiles for the floor underwater, and the water fall.
If you could add that, it would look even better.

Take a look here:
https://youtu.be/SQPvA0OvR24?t=18m18s

around 18:15~18:21

I'll see if i have time to test it on a crt during the weekend.
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:33 am
I think it might actually be possible to come up with something that makes the water look like it actually has currents. I'll try looking more into it later.

The patch above has the old water in it, so don't use that one. I'll post the right patch in this post. I'd appreciate any input you give me on it, so thanks in advance!
Cavern Island New Water.ips (205.64 KB)
Cavern Island Water Patch

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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 8:37 am
I actually liked the 50% checkerboard version better, but that's me ;)

I would be really curious to see how it looks on a CRT when you've got that 50% checkerboard pattern 'swap' the transparent and the opaque pixels at 30 fps... I'm quite sure on my CRT it would generate a not-so-flickering color blend effect, so it would really look like you're behind a semitransparent surface.

Or you could leave the water tiles behind the sprite and change Tails palette when he enters/leaves the water... ok, that's crazy ;)
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 9:03 am
To be honest, the 50% checkerboard was my favourite, too. For some reason, I think it looks better if it's not animated, it's less confusing.
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:43 am
Alternating which pixels are transparent requires a tile load, whereas the existing animation is just a palette change. I'm not sure I've seen a game try it...
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:26 pm
I seem to remember that Sik tried something like that in his homebrew game, "Project MD" (for the Mega Drive / Genesis, hence the "MD"), though I can't confirm that since I don't have the ROM anymore, and the Youtube videos are too bad to use as a reference. For example... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jjA2as4U630
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:38 pm
Better water color/effect, IMHO:



By the way, really impressive all the fixes! Really, really fantastic!
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:43 pm
Just want to state that I also prefer the static dither pattern to the animated one.
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Post Posted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:04 pm
freezingicekirby wrote
Is it too late to say that the original water doesn't look bad and that changing it may alter the intended feel of the level?

I mean, it's not like you're making Tails green because you don't like orange, but... these guys knew what they were doing, and drew the water like that with a purpose.
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Post Posted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:12 pm
ICEknight wrote
freezingicekirby wrote
Is it too late to say that the original water doesn't look bad and that changing it may alter the intended feel of the level?

I mean, it's not like you're making Tails green because you don't like orange, but... these guys knew what they were doing, and drew the water like that with a purpose.


I respect your opinion. I agree they knew what they were doing, and that was a GG version. In a big screen, everything is different. I really like the Sonic 1 like water.
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 01, 2016 6:10 am
Howdy there, folks! This project ain't dead or anything... it's just that I put it off for a while as I was looking into trying to start another big project of mine (one I've been trying to work up the nerve to try for the last six years... and currently still failing to do so), but then ultimately ended up forgetting about this project as a result. I meant to post a comment about this, but looking through the replies in this topic, it seems like I forgot that, too. So, I apologize for that.

In any case, just today I came up with a new way I thought about handling the water. It's sort of a mixture of both solid colors AND the whole checkerboard idea one of you suggested to me.



It might be a little hard to see, (or maybe that's just my monitor), but the water here is, yet again, one solid color. You might be thinking I simply reverted back to one of the ways I did it before... but this water holds a secret this time around!

Since I can't have transparency, I decided to have the next best thing; imitation transparency! Manipulating the colors and pretty much every single graphic you see here, I changed the default transparent black to blue, then placed the checkered water graphic over it. The results?



The water appears solid, but when you jump into it, the checkered effect comes into play, making it look like Tails is actually underwater! Unfortunately, this did cause some slight issues, but I managed to iron them out as best as I could (doing this effect really screwed with the palette, so the waterfall graphics got messed up as a result).

Now, I know some of you probably don't like the solid color here, but I ultimately decided to go with that because that's pretty much how the rest of the game handles the water in the other stages. When you go into Lake Rocky or you look at the water on the world map, it's a single color. The only difference is that it has some detail here and there so it doesn't look boring, which, I'll admit, I'm looking into adding some detail here to the Cavern Island water so it doesn't look so boring, either. That's going to be a bit more tricky to pull off and will undoubtedly take me some more time to figure out... but I'll see what I can do.

Also, in case anyone asks, I went with a dark color for the water because the cavern itself isn't very well lit. I figured it fits in quite well.

Once or if I decide to apply this new water to the patch, I'll see if I can get it uploaded for you folks to use.... and let's hope I don't forget about it again this time. :(
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:02 pm
Looks good on your gif.
Good compromise of both getting a consistent look through the game and a nice effect for when Tails is actually underwater.

Good job.
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:07 pm
I'm between this and the Sonic water effect. Both are great! Hope you release this soon! Nice work!
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 01, 2016 1:42 pm
I quite enjoy that effect, if I dare say-so myself. :)
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:20 pm
Nice solution. I like it.
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