Digital archaeology, game disassemblies and more

Debug Leftovers in Dark Seal 2 / Wizard Fire

I'm still alive! It's the busy season at my job, so between that and working on other projects, I haven't been doing much digital archaeology. Tonight I spent some time doing just that.

So! Dark Seal 2 (known as Wizard Fire in the west) is a fantasy themed beat-em-up. And apparently it is a variety of debug functions remaining...

Panel & Variety Akamaru Q - All sorts of test options!

Life is finally returning to normalcy (whatever that is) after moving into my new house. And that means back to hacking old games in my spare time! Today we'll look at Akamaru Q Joushou, a game you probably haven't bothered with unless your Japanese is pretty good. At its heart, it's a quiz game but has a variety of simple action and word games as well to make things interesting. It has a heck of a set of debugging tools... and a very interesting developer easter egg!

Object menu, debug tools and more in Kyukyoku Sentai Dadandaan (Monster Maulers)! - Part 2

In Part 1 we took a look at the removed Tool Menu, and now we'll look at the variety of debugging tools left in and a couple mysteries. And then I'll finally be done with this game... for now.

Object menu, debug tools and more in Kyukyoku Sentai Dadandaan (Monster Maulers)! - Part 1

Kyukyoku Sentai Dadandarn, meaning Ultimate Battle Squad Dadandarn and called Monster Maulers in the West, is Konami's homage to the sentai genre of TV shows, movies and comics. It's a solid game and pretty fun; Hardcore Gaming 101 has a good review. And I got way more than I bargained for when I started taking the game apart: so much more that I'll be making splitting this into two posts. Here we go...

Hidden Menu in Miyasu Nonki no Quiz 18kin

Yet another adult arcade quiz game, but this one has some pretty well-drawn and amusing artwork by eromanga artist Miyasu Nonki! A while back I found the text for an alternate test menu, with object and background checks. I could never really track it down properly with the standard MAME disassembly. Maybe I just wasn't trying hard enough, because when I gave it another go yesterday, this time in IDA, I was finally able to find the routine as well as the non-hacked method for activating it.

English Text in Koutetsu Yousai Strahl

I'm pretty burnt out on tackling Super Gem Fighter / Pocket Fighter right now. I took a little break and did some more research on something quite interesting I had found a while back: English text in Koutetsu Yousai Strahl, a horizontal shooter and a favorite among shmup fans.