Author Topic: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread  (Read 45372 times)

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Offline RickyKustafason

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #15 on: February 28, 2013, 12:09 AM »
I appreciate SkinnyV doing this.  Props for the manual testing he is putting in.  This can only make compatibility better.  :)

Offline SkinnyV

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #16 on: February 28, 2013, 12:12 AM »
I'm glad it is useful to some peoples. I sure wished somebody had done it before me!

I tested over 40 games using mapper #206. Most were incorrectly assigned mapper #4. Most of them would not work properly on mapper #4 so I fixed the header of those specific game. Some seemed to work properly even on mapper #4 so for now I'm not going to add them to my No-Intro fix pack. Some surprisingly were working with the incorrect mapper assigned and wouldn't with the proper mapper #206. I find it very curious and will try to find the reason for this (different undocumented revision maybe) but I obviously didn't change anything for those specific games as to not break compatibility. I updated the fix pack for the No-Intro set and the following game are now playable:

Babel no Tou (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Family Jockey (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Family Mahjong (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Family Pinball (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Side Pocket (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Super Chinese (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Super Xevious - Gump no Nazo (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)
Valkyrie no Bouken - Toki no Kagi Densetsu (Japan)   (Incorrect mapper, mapper #4 instead of #206)

I also decided to switch to BPM patching instead using the aging IPS format. It is now possible to patch all the games at once to save time. You can still individually patch them also if you prefer to only patch what you plan on playing with.

New No-Intro fix pack
« Last Edit: March 04, 2013, 10:44 PM by SkinnyV »

Offline Majestic_Lizard

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #17 on: February 28, 2013, 01:58 AM »
{side discussion removed from post}

I greatly appreciate the work SkinnyV has done.

Just to be clear to those viewing this thread:

(1) This is a thread to report bugs to a community of users with a common interest about a device they all paid for.

(2) The object of this thread is to provide basic data to save more advanced users time in their troubleshooting. The will give people a place to go so that there will not be multiple threads about every obscure game that isn't working.

(3) Even users with little or no technical knowledge (such as myself) can participate by simply reporting if a rom is not working (as I did with Karnov, Star Tropics, and Zoda's Revenge). In the instance of Karnov this contributed to SkinnyV realizing that many games in the no-intro set had headers for the wrong mappers. I also have no real idea why the Star Tropics games don't work, but because I reported it several advanced users, including the developer, are now aware that there is an issue with the mapper support for that game. I'm sure these issues would have been known anyway, but the fact that it was pointed out saved everyone some time.

(4) In reporting errors, it is important to try to be polite and accurate. The idea is to give us a more concrete idea of compatibility, and also to hopefully improve compatibility in the future with that knowledge.

I am trying to learn how to edit headers to fix some of these games, but I'm coming from no understanding at all. Also, the main games that I want to work (Star Tropics 1 & 2) do not have a problem with headers, but with mapper implementation.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 09:26 PM by Majestic_Lizard »

Offline JimmyMz

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #18 on: February 28, 2013, 05:44 AM »
removed
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 06:14 PM by jimmyemunoz »
Nothing for sale right now, but more stuff coming soon. Message me on this forum by clicking the envelope icon under my name.

Offline stonie

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #19 on: February 28, 2013, 06:09 AM »
lol i get your frustraition there jimmy, i didn't think you ment it that way( and the metaphor about teaching a man to fish was your reminder that your aim was to help) . i will say this though. If you don't want to learn to fix the header to run it now, jsut keep posting problem games and at some point if they can be fixxed through mappers they probly will(and with startropics i know that loopys mapper for the powerpak fixxed this i don't know if it broke other games but if it was done there i bet it will happen for the everdrive at some point) . So ya, if you don't want to learn just continue reporting and has patience. jimmy here was trying to get you around patience though lol.
flashcarts- acecard 2i, everdrive md, everdrive n8, cyclo ievolution

Offline SkinnyV

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #20 on: February 28, 2013, 06:14 AM »
It's good that people learn how to do it them self, it's not like I'm the only one with the power of switching a few bytes around;D I'll continue to post new fix once I encounter game needing it or if people point out certain game that could be fixed that way. I'm not sure what's the issue. If a users want to do it, they either know how or can read jimmy's post explaining the basic behind it. If they do not feel like messing around with it, do not have the time or any other reason preventing them from figuring out the info needed to fix the header, they'll have the patch i'll post. All the info is there, you have Bootgods database that is packed with PCB and mapper detail for almost all the game and there's the unofficial compatibility list I compiled showing almost all the mapper that game are using (also compiled using Bootgod's database. So it's really a matter of choice.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 06:21 AM by SkinnyV »

Offline stonie

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #21 on: February 28, 2013, 06:17 AM »
pretty much i have yet to receive my n8 so i don't know if i am going to wait or take a shot at it, i've messed with hex editors in the past but i have a pretty slow learning curve for that kinda thing lol
flashcarts- acecard 2i, everdrive md, everdrive n8, cyclo ievolution

Offline SkinnyV

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #22 on: February 28, 2013, 06:20 AM »
No need for an hex editor, there's manyapplication available to edit the header info using easy to use GUI!

Offline Majestic_Lizard

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #23 on: February 28, 2013, 07:39 AM »
{side discussion removed from post}

Again, thanks to SkinnyV. Really the main games I'm interested in seeing working are the Star Tropics titles and it looks like we'll have to wait for feedback from Krizzk on that one. I only mentioned Karnov because I randomly found that it didn't work (and SkinnyV fixed it). I was more concerned with Star Tropics, and as SkinnyV mentioned, modifying the headers isn't going to fix that one.

I'm sorry I couldn't be of more help, as I'm not familiar with the software and concepts you have been discussing. I'll do what I can, even if that just means reporting that I found something didn't work. As we all know there is a difference between someone saying that they don't understand something and someone refusing to learn how to do something.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 09:12 PM by Majestic_Lizard »

Offline phoenixdownita

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #24 on: February 28, 2013, 08:27 AM »
I don't know if what I am doing is correct, probably not, but it seems to "fix" some troubled ROM at least partially (it may be due to the way the patch process works though and if the BPS is short [header only]).

I used SkinnyV patch on ROM "similar" to the target and although sometimes I get a patch failed it seems to work.
For example I found out issues with some of the games english translation and by applying the patch meant for the non translated game to the translation it seems to make it work too (example is Valkyrie no Bouken - Toki no Kagi Densetsu (Japan), the goodset has wrong mapper for both J and trEN, the patch appear to fix both although it returns a failure for the trEN version).

From the size of the BPS file maybe when it works it is because the patch is limited to the header itself, other games seems to have a much more extensive patch and I had mixed results with them (example is Akira, the good set has the correct mapper for J already but the trEN does not work, once patched [although an error comes out] it kind of work ... partially, it locks 10 seconds in).
For Akira I tried to manually patch just the header myslef of the trEN but there's a trainer block which I think is not working (itn may require the original dumper hardware), the unpatched or manually patched trEN simply locks (unpatched is mapper 4, patched I manually put 33 in the right nibbles, N8 info confirms the correctness of the intervention wrt the mapper number)

Anyway, one of the question is about the extensive patching required for some of the games in SkinnyV rar archive (for example Akira's patch is almost as big as the ROM). So did you just add/patched the header or there was some more extensive intervention? (I am referring to all the files that are longer than 1KB).

Thanks for any insight you may provide.

Offline SkinnyV

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #25 on: February 28, 2013, 09:32 AM »
You get patch failed because the CRC of your rom doesn't match. When the patch goal is to swap the currently assigned mapper for another, the patcher will just locate that byte and replace it with another while when the patch is to add extra data (IE a missing header), it create a much larger patch with a lot of the rom content. This could have easily been prevented if I wasn't so tired when I switched to the BPM patching system simply by generating delta mode patch instead of linear mode. Once I noticed it, I just had finished converting all the patch from IPS to BPM and figured it wasn't such a big deal for file that are never really bigger than 200 or 300 kb. But it's something I'll keep in mind in the future (maybe next time I do an update). As for your question about using using those patch for translated rom, if it's just a patch that swap the mapper assigned, it might work but the patch adding the 16bytes header might mess them up. Now that you made me think about it again, I can say there is good chance I'll redo them in delta mode.

Edit: Ok, it was annoying me so I re-generated all the patch with delta mode this time. It's much better now! It actually only took about 15 minutes because I kept all the patched and un-patched rom in my work folder from this morning update. I also corrected a error I made after re-doing the patch in BPM. The patch for Boulder Dash was supposed to be for the USA version, not the Japanese one. Also, Krikzz noticed a problem with the header of Ys3 so I just added it to the latest pack for those who had trouble with the game not saving.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 11:46 AM by SkinnyV »

Offline deksar

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #26 on: February 28, 2013, 01:42 PM »
Thank you so much SkinnyV for your No-Intro fixes.

Offline phoenixdownita

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #27 on: February 28, 2013, 06:50 PM »
Thanks SkinnyV I for sure appreciate being spoon fed the fixes.

It almost begs the question if we should build a "giant" patching base that contains all/most ROMS and can either automatically add the header if missing or fix it if present but wrong (it will have to deal with the sometime present "trainer block" that has nothing to do with the game itself or simply detect it for the moment and skip it)

I know it could be a titanic effort but given how many bad ROMs are out there and the fact that sometimes they partially work it's crazy.

I wonder if there's even a ready made executable that can check a given ROM against a DB and check if the header is right or wrong for the game. It would be already OK if I have to chose what game I think the ROM should contain and then let the code try the variants (like J/E/U if such things do exist).

<rant>Anyway I suspect that as a result of the N8 availability NEW and improved ROMSETs (nointro/goodset) will have to come out with the required fixes .... I wonder how were the emulator/other flash cart working so far. Given the kind of issues it seems like that even the original copier would fail on running these ROMs .... </rant>

Please understand that I tend to get mildly OCD on RomSets and although I would end up playing say less than 10% of any set if I know something doesn't work it bugs me .... but in the case of NES I better let it go as there is so much to do that I better focus on the few games I actually care about

Again some other gamer would care about some other games so in the end in a few months we probably would end up with a new, vastly improved, fixed set of ROMs.

In conclusion, thanks to SkinnyV to actually having pinpointed the cause (bad/missing headers) and taken the time to fix it and taken the time to do it at large for the rest of us.

Offline SkinnyV

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #28 on: February 28, 2013, 07:39 PM »
The thing is that No-Intro seem to be aware (at least for some roms) of missing header, you can look at this thread for example. But it doesn't seem they feel concerned about it. I get a sense from that specific thread that they are contacted regularly about that kind of headers issue and brush it off feeling that since the headers is not part of the original game code and get added for emulation purpose, it is not a prioritie or their responsibility. They also seem to think of going completely headerless for their set with a separate XML for header information which would render the set useless for most thing like flash cart. I saw some guy from the NES development scene try to talk to them but they seem to get ignored. If that ever happen, I can see a new set getting released for flash cart and original hardware but until then, it will be up to people in need to find and correct those thing. I saw an automatic header fixer (ines-header-fixer/) using bootgod's database that seem very promising but I have yet to try it as it seem to be a python script and I  rarely used python before..
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 10:00 PM by SkinnyV »

Offline butfluffy

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Re: Games Not Working / Bug Reporting Thread
« Reply #29 on: March 01, 2013, 02:32 AM »
a new set for flash carts would be an awesome idea thinking about it. it could be uploaded to most the naughty places :)