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!
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...
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.
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.
I noticed this menu a while back in Magical Error wo Sagase, a puzzle game where you search for differences between two images. In the past I was able to load the routine, but I guess the stack wasn't set up properly, and it would reset the game immediately after the text appeared. I took a second look at the disassembly tonight and had much better success.