Random Project

›› Super Robot Wars Alpha Gaiden

Japanese Name ›› Super Robot Taisen Alpha Gaiden
Developed by ›› Banpresto
Published by ›› Banpresto
Published on ›› March 29th, '01
Platform ›› PS1
Genre ›› Strategy/RPG
First Release ›› December 26th, '08
Current Version ›› 0.95
Released on ›› December 26th, '08

Super Robot Wars Alpha Gaiden

Major Release ~ Ancient Magic is out. Ancient Magic
# Posted on December 19th, 2010 01:31 AM by Gideon Zhi
Ancient Magic is a fairly generic little RPG for the SNES by the much-maligned Hot-B. See if you can spot their advert for another of their products in the game! Despite its rather pedestrian roots, the game takes several surprising twists towards the end, and is generally worth sticking it out even if the wrap-up (or lack thereof) is a bit of a let down. As a note, there´s more game past "THE END." Also as a note, do set your window speed to "fast" in the in-game options menus - it´ll improve your experience dramatically.

A godawful amount of work went into this, probably more than was worth it. If I can find the time sometime in the next week or so, I´ll put up some kind of postmortem showing off before-and-afters of a bunch of the interface rearrangements. Fun fact, in the original Japanese version, you couldn´t see your max HP or MP in battle! You can in mine, though!

And now I´m going to bed.
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Progress ~ Announcing The Great Holiday Release Gambit# Posted on December 18th, 2010 06:21 PM by Gideon ZhiSo, in two weeks´ time, it will be the new year. Time flies! And unfortunately, Aeon Genesis STILL only has one release this year. This simply will not do! As such, I´m announcing The Great Holiday Release Gambit. It´s like an advent calendar, except there are only three doors and they open much less frequently.

I have three things I want to release by the end of the year. The first is Ancient Magic. Its playtest ended within the last few days, and I´m just now fixing up the last of the issues. I´m hoping to have it out in the next five hours or so.

The second game has just entered betatesting, and I´m hoping to have it out in a week´s time, give or take. The third, in another week. This last one I can´t make any concrete promises on; I still have about half the script to edit and a bunch more hacking to do before it´s done, but it doesn´t look like it´s anywhere near as beastly as the last few games have been.

Tonight´s clue is not so much "Something old, something new" as it is "Something old, something really old, and something waaaay older than even that last one, no, seriously." All three games are substantially beefy, and I don´t think many people will be disappointed with the results should the Great Gambit succeed.

See you in a few hours, hopefully, after the last Ancient Magic fixes are implemented! (Note: Screenshots unrelated.)
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Progress ~ Ancient Magic betatest wrapping up Ancient Magic
# Posted on December 16th, 2010 01:53 AM by Gideon Zhi
Release is imminent. Like, within-the-next-24-ish-hours imminent. I hope. I´m still hoping to get three more patches out this year, and this is one of ´em! There´s still time!

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Miscellaneous ~ It´s been a dry year# Posted on October 11th, 2010 10:28 AM by Gideon ZhiYes, I realize it´s been a pretty dry year. Looking back, Tactics Ogre is really the only thing I´ve released, which makes me sad. However, I´m expecting to release at least three more projects by year´s end - hopefully four, and maybe even more. One of these is Laplace´s Demon, which I´d wanted to get out for Halloween but I´ve been really busy and haven´t had time to finish its script edit. Another is Super Nazo Puyo 2, which has been placed on the backburner while I work on more important stuff but really only needs a week or two of hard work before it´s ready to be playtested. Of course there´s also Ancient Magic, whose betatest is progressing smoothly, and I´ve got at least one or two other things baking quickly in the oven.

I´ve also gone back to school. I´m happy with my degrees but they´re not making me any money, so I´m going to spend a few years and get a BS in computer science, which is probably what I should have done in the first place. The two classes I´ve been taking this semester and the 40-hour work week I´m doing over the weekend have put a vicegrip on my free time of late, but somehow I still find time for the hobby. I´m not going to promise a Christmas run-up like several years back, when I released a new translation every two weeks for two or three months straight, and now that I think of it I haven´t even *considered* a Christmas release. I have something I´d certainly like to launch on the big 12-25, but I don´t know if it´d be possible to get it ready in time... We´ll see. Whether or not I have a Christmas release for you all, the rest of the year promises to be fruitful, and again, I apologize for the recent drought.
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Progress ~ And now for a blast from the past. Super Puzzle Puyo, Too!
# Posted on September 3rd, 2010 03:39 AM by Gideon Zhi
So here´s one there hasn´t been any news on in a while! Years, in fact! Tonight, I did some tinkering with Super Nazo Puyu Tsuu (or, as we´ll probably be calling it, "Super Puzzle Puyo, Too!") I´d say that progress is astounding enough to warrant a full site update, and not just a twitter post. The full main dialog script has been inserted, whereas before only about two thirds of it had found its way into the game. The project has been brought up to date with current tools (instead of tools from, say, 2003 or earlier) and roughly half of the script has been edited. No work on the menu systems yet, though they shouldn´t pose too much of a problem. I´ve also added 23 new screenshots to the game´s project page, a link to which you can find at the top of this post. As usual I can´t say when it´ll be done, other than "soon, I hope."
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Progress ~ Ancient Magic finally reaches beta Ancient Magic
# Posted on August 24th, 2010 09:43 PM by Gideon Zhi
Ugh, this game´s programming is one horrible spaghetti mess! But it´s finally in playtesting, which means that the end is in sight. Have a copy of the new title screen, and of one of the tougher issues (fade-in sprite text stored nine times in the rom! Ugh.)
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Miscellaneous ~ And now for something completely different.# Posted on May 22nd, 2010 08:16 PM by Gideon ZhiI was browsing YouTube a month or so ago for silly House of the Dead 2 stuff when I came across a band named after the game´s infamous "Suffer, like G did" line. The recordings were shaky cams of live performances and weren´t of very good quality, but the band has since released a three-track EP which you can download on their website. I´ve been taken completely aback by their stuff, as it´s actually really good! Very jazzy. So yeah, this is a plug. Grab the EP (it´s free) and if you like them, then spread the word.

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Progress ~ Ancient Magic: Script Fully Inserted Ancient Magic
# Posted on May 1st, 2010 03:35 PM by Gideon Zhi
A few days ago I finally managed to get Ancient Magic´s auto-format routine working nearly 100%. What this means, in effect, is that I add a single control code at the start of a string, and the game itself adds line breaks where appropriate. This is complicated by Ancient Magic´s text system for two reasons. First, there is no standard "line break" command like most games have; instead, the game has a "print cursor position" command, which takes X and Y parameter bytes. Second, the routine likes to recursively call itself, most notably to differentiate between the speech patterns of the male and female main characters. These have been fully retained in the text translation, and the routine is currently navigating said recursive jumps with about 98% accuracy. Of course we need 100%, but it´s really cool to see nonetheless.

The *nice* thing about the super annoying Cursor Position command is that it lets me tweak menus like crazy, and take advantage of the double-spacing that ten-ten marks usually occupy. I´ve also managed to add max hp and max mp indicators to the battle window, which the original game did not have!

I don´t know how much longer this will take, but I´d like to have it being playtested in a week or two. No guarantees on that, of course.
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Major Release ~ Tactics Ogre, For Real This Time Tactics Ogre ~ Let Us Cling Together
# Posted on April 8th, 2010 02:16 AM by Gideon Zhi
Yes, the actual English version is available now. Enjoy!
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Miscellaneous ~ Pop! Goes The Weasel Tactics Ogre ~ Let Us Cling Together
# Posted on April 2nd, 2010 01:45 AM by Gideon Zhi
Well, as I´m sure most people have realized by now, the Tactics Ogre patch translates the game into Al Bhed and not English. Happy April Fool´s Day, everyone! Consider this my way of getting back at all the are-we-there-yet whiners I´ve had to deal with over the years. If I truly intended to delay the patch two weeks for every person who asked when it´d be done, well, you´d probably be getting it on Christmas instead.

What´s no joke, however, is the very real amount work that went into this. The actual translation patch - which will be coming in a few days, don´t worry - will be nearly identical to the one available now. The Al Bhed version contains the full English text, sort of - I just used a different table file to insert it into the rom. In fact, if I didn´t have to get up for my crazy weekend work schedule in the morning, I´d probably get things ready to go right now! But them´s the breaks, and a few more days won´t kill you. And for those of you who are curious, yes, the Al Bhed version of the patch will be moved to the Tactics Ogre page´s "Extras" subsection, where it will be preserved for all who care to try it.

See you in a few days!

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