Author Topic: Which version of a game should you play, by port quality, bugs, enhancements etc  (Read 6126 times)

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Offline Kerr Avon

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This thread is intended to list which version of a game is the best if, for example, some versions are bugged, or when one or more versions of a game are inferior to other version(s). Please post any more than you think are important.

Please note: This is not a thread for N64 compatibility (that's at http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=147.0)






Beast Wars: Transmetals

Retro Junkie (http://s9.zetaboards.com/Nintendo_64_Forever/topic/9008616/) says: "Beast Wars: Transmetals. For some reason they made drastic changes to the NTSC release. The Japan version is so much different in feel and gameplay than its US counterpart, (My Daughter owns the NTSC version and I the Japan version). And I believe the Japan version to be the better game. The original Japan version causes you to use strategy against your opponents. Having a very big playing field, something that the US version does not have, the need to maneuver your character, adds to the fighting. The further away from your opponent, the more the camera pulls back. Fly in, hit your opponent, and then out across the field turn and fire back at them. You can stay up close, fight, or you can pull away across the field of play and make pot shots. In the NTSC version you are basically locked up close."





Beetle Adventure Racing

Not a bug, but the PAL version of this game is inferior to the NTSC version, having a black border around the screen, so if you're a PAL user but your TV can display the NTSC version of the game, then it's recommended that you use the NTSC version instead. See Note 1 at the bottom of this post.






Body Harvest

The PAL version of Body Harvest can't be beaten on the easy difficulty as once you beat the fourth level you are forced to restart the game on Hero difficulty. On the NTSC version, you can complete the game in easy mode.






Bomberman the Second Attack

Shellshocker18 says the NTSC version is probably better to play than the JAP version, as "Basically, the Japanese version is a bit harder, but most of that comes down to having tediously slow walking speed, losing power ups upon any death, and relatively hard to avoid 1 hit KO attacks from a few bosses."

For more information, and a link to an informative video, see: http://s9.zetaboards.com/Nintendo_64_Forever/single/?p=10006997&t=9008616






Chameleon Twist

The Japanese version of the game has more content than the NTSC and PAL versions, for some reason, so it's recommended that you play that one. If you don't speak Japanese, then you can patch the game to be in English (http://www.shootersforever.com/forums_message_boards/viewtopic.php?t=7046).






International Superstar Soccer 2000

Sogun (http://www.shootersforever.com/forums_message_boards/viewtopic.php?t=7122) says: "Contributing to the topic. One interesting game is ISS 2000, especially for Spanish users. You have Spanish comentators (I don't know if text too, maybe some of it is translated) in the NTSC US version, but not in PAL (there's English, German, French and I think Italian). But the PAL version has an extra game mode that lets you create a player from scratch, train him and improve his abilities in a RPG Japanese conversation novel kind of thing. It's very addicting. Luckily you get a password with your player's data and I think you can transfer it to the NTSC game.

The Japanese version also had this career mode, but if was in a different fashion and I don't understand the language, lol.
"






Legend of Zelda: Master Quest

The Legend of Zelda: Master Quest, is a commercially modified version of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, released by Nintendo on the Gamecube. It is basically Ocarina of Time, but with altered dungeons and a higher difficulty level, and is intended to be played by fans of the original game. And it has been hacked and made to work on the N64, with bug-fixes, and other things (for example, Aroenai's patched versions make use of the N64's expansion pak to speed up the game).

To quote from Ozidual's guide, "If you are completely new to [Master Quest] or if you aren't looking for a specific version (1.0 vs 1.1 vs etc), play Aroenai's patched version (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5161.0).  If you are an old-timer who eats at the same place every time because they get it just right, play the GCto1.0 patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5281.0).  If you are a minimalist who wants to experience the GameCube games or a closer to NTSC 1.2/PAL version, play the GCtoN64 patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5281.0).  My future replays will be on Aroenai's patches."

For a very detailed comparion, go to:

http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=6179.msg48192#msg48192





Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Ocarina of Time was an N64 exclusive, but it was later released on the Gamecube, albeit in emulated form. And the Gamecube version has been hacked and made to work on the N64, with bug-fixes, and other things (for example, Aroenai's patched versions make use of the N64's expansion pak to speed up the game).

To quote from Ozidual's guide, "If you are completely new to Ocarina of Time or if you aren't looking for a specific version (1.0 vs 1.1 vs etc), play Aroenai's patched version (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5161.0).  If you are an old-timer who eats at the same place every time because they get it just right, play the GCto1.0 patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5281.0).  If you are a minimalist who wants to experience the GameCube games or a closer to NTSC 1.2/PAL version, play the GCtoN64 patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5281.0).  My future replays will be on Aroenai's patches."

For a very detailed comparion, go to:

http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=6179.msg48192#msg48192





Mario Kart 64

Not a bug, but the PAL version of this game is noticeably inferior to the NTSC version, being slower than the NTSC version, and having a black border around the screen, so if you're a PAL user but your TV can display the NTSC version of the game, then it's recommended that you use the NTSC version. See Note 1 at the bottom of this post.


ReliantLion adds "The Japanese version is preferred by speed runners using skips. I believe it is because on Luigi's Raceway, there is a way to shoot yourself with a shell and land out of bounds, when you're dropped back on the coarse, you are a whole lap ahead. The US version does not have this bug/feature/skip."







Pilotwings 64

Not a bug, but the PAL version of this game is noticeably inferior to the NTSC version, being slower than the NTSC version, and having a black border around the screen, so if you're a PAL user but your TV can display the NTSC version of the game, then it's recommended that you use the NTSC version. See Note 1 at the bottom of this post.






Rakuga Kids

Shellshocker18 (http://s9.zetaboards.com/Nintendo_64_Forever/topic/9008616) says "The PAL version of Rakuga Kids generally loads much slower than the Japanese version. I've been playing with the Japanese version and the PAL version converted to ntsc format on my everdrive. While they both play just as smoothly with no noticeabe gameplay differences, the load times before matches sometimes last around 7-8 seconds longer in the PAL version. "





Space Station Silicon Valley

The NTSC version had a major bug, it would crash if the N64 had an expansion pak present. This was fixed in the PAL version. I've not been able to discover if the NTSC version was fixed, so if you're an NTSC user then try the NTSC version, and if it crashes, then use the PAL version. PAL users can of course just use the PAL version as usual.






Super Mario 64

Not a bug, but the PAL version of this game is noticeably inferior to the NTSC version, being slower than the NTSC version, and having a black border around the screen, so if you're a PAL user but your TV can display the NTSC version of the game, then it's recommended that you use the NTSC version. See Note 1 at the bottom of this post.






Super Smash Bros.

There's a detailed write up of the differences between the NTSC and JAP versions, at: http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=6179.msg48291#msg48291





Wave Race 64

Not a bug, but the PAL version of this game is noticeably inferior to the NTSC version, being slower than the NTSC version, and having a black border around the screen, so if you're a PAL user but your TV can display the NTSC version of the game, then it's recommended that you use the NTSC version. See Note 1 at the bottom of this post.

The Japanese versions have Fanta advertisement rather than N64 logos in banners and also features Rumble Pack support and ghosts in Time Trial. They remixed Sunny Beach and Southern Island tracks and it has Japanese text and female voice, so a patch replacing those would be fantastic!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6q-AI-p_ASU





WWF No Mercy

The game was released first in America (the NTSC version of the game), then later in Europe (the PAL version). The PAL release had a serious bug where the game-save was randomly deleted, so a revised (fixed) version of the PAL version was released that fixed the bug, though the fixed version also had added censorship (the blood effects were removed).

I don't know if the NTSC version had the save-game bug (I've found conflicting information on the net) but there was a revised version of the NTSC version released, so it seems probable that the revised NTSC version fixes at least one bug in the game, perhaps the same save-game bug. It's recommended that you play the fixed versions of the game, just incase.

The fixed versions typically have 'Rev A', or '1.1' in their filenames, such as:

WWF No Mercy (Europe) (Rev A).zip







Note 1

Super Mario 64, Mario Kart 64, Pilotwings 64, and Wave Race 64 were amongst the very first games released for the N64, and they were first released in Japan and then North America. At the time of the Nintendo 64, there were three main formats of TV signal data. These are NTSC (which is the one used mainly by North America), JAP (used mainly by Japan), and PAL (used by Great Britain, Australia, and much of Europe).

NTSC and JAP are almost identical, and the require almost no alterations to make a game from one of these types (known as 'regions') to work with the other. But PAL is rather different, and it takes a little effort to port (convert) a game well, when porting if from NTSC to PAL, or vice versa.

Unfortunately, the PAL versions of the above four games, which were released after the NTSC versions, were badly ported (badly converted), resulting in their being slower and having black borders on the screen. The lack of speed was because the NTSC versions were timed according to the NTSC's 60Hz frame-rate, and when ported the PAL versions kept the same timing routines, which resulted in the games running slower since they now timed themselves by the PAL frame-rate, which is 50Hz. Why the timing routines weren't altered to compensate for PAL's lower frame-rate, I don't know. It can only have been either laziness, or that the company's didn't want to spend time or money on the work necessary to port the games properly.

Whatever the reason, it resulted in the games running slower, and robbed Mario Kart 64 PAL users of the ability to compete (via their in-game race times) with NTSC users, since the PAL version's slower Karts resulted in longer race completion times. It meant that magazines and web sites that kept track of players' times had to keep two lists for the game, one for NTSC and one for PAL.

The black borders are in the PAL versions because of the difference between the visible resolutions of the NTSC and PAL picture formats. NTSC has a visible resolution of 480 lines, whereas PAL has a visible resolution of 576 lines. So of course if an NTSC game tried to run on a PAL screen, then unless the game or the TV stretches the image, then there will be unused lines on the screen, which will appear blank, as there will only be 480 lines of data displayed on the 576 line PAL screen.

Fortunately, after these four games, every other N64 game that was ported from NTSC (or JAP) to PAL seems to have been ported well, at least as far as I can recall. The only exception is Beetle Adventure Racing, where the PAL version sadly has black borders because the NTSC display wasn't enlarged to fit the PAL display. So for these five games, it's recommended for any PAL user to play the NTSC versions, if your TV will allow this (not all PAL TVs can play NTSC games).

« Last Edit: May 01, 2017, 03:51 PM by Kerr Avon »

Offline Romi64

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I like the idea of this. A step closer to making the experience optimal. However, I wish you could elaborate a bit more on some entries rather than just saying the PAL version is inferior to the NTSC version.

Offline ozidual

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Converting a game from NTSC (USA and Japan) to PAL requires changing all of the video and audio timings in a game, and sometimes even the programming of the game.  If the game designer just didn't care or if they hired someone else to convert it who really didn't care, you end up with all sorts of problems.  The video and/or audio can have slowdowns that cause syncing problems or can cause video/audio to end early.  Even if they did all of that correctly, the programming may require special timing for the video or audio for certain events (timing which may now be changed to match PAL speeds).  If this isn't fixed properly, you get all sorts of glitches.

In Zelda (which was done correctly for all releases, but PAL was changed to 60Hz for GC releases), you have the usual video and audio timings, you have jumping timing, you have crawling timing, etc. etc.  There is programming based on all of those timings too.  It would be a HUGE headache to convert the timing of the GC releases back to 50Hz, and could cause more problems.  One glitch I've read about is if you mess with the crawling timing, the game will just crash when you get to a crawling scene.
Projects: Zelda OoT GCtoN64, Doshin the Giant, SSSV, Sim City 64, Getter Love, Shiren
Flash Carts: EverDrive64 2.5, EverDrive N8, SD2SNES

Offline Kerr Avon

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I like the idea of this. A step closer to making the experience optimal. However, I wish you could elaborate a bit more on some entries rather than just saying the PAL version is inferior to the NTSC version.

Sorry, I thought I'd replied to this, I mustn't have clicked POST (I tend to post here when I'm at work).

Anyway, you're right of course, and I've now updated the thread with more details.



Offline Kerr Avon

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A comparison of the various versions/hacks of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and The Master Quest (The Master Quest is basically Ocarina of Time, but with altered dungeons and a harder difficulty overall, it was never published officially on the N64, but has been made to run on the N64 by fans of the game).

Thanks to Ozidual for this very helpful comparison and advice. Everything that follows this sentence are his words:


Fix
| NTSC GCtoN64
| PAL GCtoN64
| NTSC GCto1.0
| PAL GCto1.0
| NTSC Aroenai
| PAL Aroenai
| NTSC 1.0/1.1
| NTSC 1.2
| PAL 1.0/1.1
HUD Color Correction
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
L replaced with Z
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
C stick replaced with C buttons
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
Ozidual Text fix*
x
x
x
x
_
_
x
x
x
Aroenai Text fix*
_
_
_
_
x
x
x
x
x
Game Ending Fix
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
Game Ending Timing Fix
_
x
_
x
_
x
x
x
x
Options Language Select Restore
_
x
_
x
_
x
_
_
x
1st Time Language Select
_
_
_
_
_
_
_
_
x
Game Saved Screen Restore
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
Intro Logo Restored
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
MQ Water Temple Door fix
_
_
x
x
x
x
N/A
N/A
N/A
Gerudo Symbols Restored
_
_
x
x
x
x
x
_
_
Fire Temple Music Restored
_
_
x
x
x
x
x
_
_
Ganon(dorf's) Blood Restored
_
_
x
x
x
x
x
_
_
NTSC 1.0 English Text Timing
_
_
x
x
_
_
(1.0)
_
_
2x international text speed
_
_
_
_
x
x
(J)
(J)
_
S of Agony finds all hid chests
_
_
_
_
x
x
_
_
_
Cow Nose Ring restored
_
_
_
_
x
x
_
_
_
Expanded Name Entry Screen
_
_
_
_
_
x
_
_
_
Map Select Translated
_
_
_
_
x
x
_
_
_
Blurry Comma Fix
_
_
_
_
x
x
_
_
_
Utilize Expansion Pak
_
_
_
_
x
x
_
_
_
Anti-Aliasing Patch
_
_
_
_
x
x
_
_
_

* Aroenai and I have slightly different text fixes, but they are essentially the same.
** Does not affect the original Ocarina of Time (just Master Quest)

It isn't exactly what you asked for, but here's a table :)

Which version to play
If you are completely new to Ocarina of Time or if you aren't looking for a specific version (1.0 vs 1.1 vs etc), play Aroenai's patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5161.0).  If you are an old-timer who eats at the same place every time because they get it just right, play the GCto1.0 patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5281.0).  If you are a minimalist who wants to experience the GameCube games or a closer to NTSC 1.2/PAL version, play the GCtoN64 patches (http://krikzz.com/forum/index.php?topic=5281.0).  My future replays will be on Aroenai's patches.

PAL vs NTSC
The PAL and NTSC versions should be fully playable on all systems (some older PAL TVs might have an issue).  If you want to switch languages ever (non-Japanese/Arabic languages), I would use the PAL version.  If you ever want to transfer your game over to the Debug ROM, I would use the PAL version.  You cannot easily transfer a save file between NTSC and PAL.  We tried to make the two versions as close as possible, though there might be slight timing differences between PAL and NTSC cutscenes.

If you are curious about differences between different versions of Ocarina of Time (https://tcrf.net/The_Legend_of_Zelda:_Ocarina_of_Time/Program_Revision_Differences) has a lot of them.

Offline Kerr Avon

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Super Smash Bros:



Well there's major debate on which version is "better" (seriously, there was like some debate earlier where people were saying "we should just play the Japanese version instead"), but the competitive Smash 64 community has done a good job outlining the differences between the Japanese and USA versions of said game (not sure about PAL). Besides the sound differences and Jigglypuff's name, there were quite a few buffs and nerfs.

Here's what I was able to find off Smashboards if you like the technical stuff :)


General Differences

DI is 40% weaker and 1 less frame in DI window
1 less frame of hitlag
Attacker and one being attacked have the same hitlag.
Sounds for body hits are different and very cartoony (think BIFF, SWOP, etc)
Jigglypuff is called Purin
Name is 'All Star! Dairantou Smash Brothers'
FFA is called Battle Royal (not Royale)
Title announcement is 'Dairantou Smash Brothers' and has a duller logo


Luigi

Higher jump and double jump
Shorter height
Lower Up-B
Fireball has more hitstun but is 1% weaker
Up-B sends opponent slightly higher and sends opponents further to the side
Fireball goes farther
Shorter roll
F-throw does 12% damage and has his (U) B-Throw knockback
B-throw does 16% damage and has his (U) F-Throw knockback


Mario

Shorter height
Lower Up-B
Fireball has more hitstun but is 1% weaker
Fireball goes farther
Shorter roll


Donkey Kong

Can do Japanese turning slide


Link

U-Tilt is 5% stronger and has greater knockback
D-Air is 2% stronger
U-Smash is 2% stronger all-up (24% instead of 22%)
Higher jump and double jump
Up-B goes higher
Boomerang goes farther
Bomb doesn't flinch opponent unless they are at 100%+
Up-B and F-Air do 1% more damage sometimes
Bomb is 2% stronger when thrown except from above
Bomb is 1% stronger when thrown from above
N-Air has weaker knockback but a flatter knockback trajectory
First kick of B-Air is 1 frame faster
Second kick of B-Air has flatter knockback trajectory
His sword looks a little longer


Samus

Up-b has 11 frames of invincibility as opposed to 3 frames in (U)
When standing next to and facing towards larger characters, U-Smash only hits with one flame, as opposed to two in (U)


Falcon

Higher jump and double jump
Up-B goes higher
F-Tilt is 1% stronger
Running speed is slower


Ness

Less lag after landing with PK Thunder 2
PK Thunder 2's hitbox lasts longer and is 5% stronger
U-Tilt is 1% stronger but has lower knockback
U-Air is 2% stronger
PK Fire is 9% weaker total
All smash attacks are 2% stronger at all points


Yoshi

First jump is slightly higher
Slower horizontal air movement
D-Smash is 1% weaker
Can do special Japanese turning slide


Kirby

F-Throw has flatter knockback trajectory
Up-B goes slightly higher
D-Smash is 2% stronger
U-Smash is 2% stronger
U-Air is 2% stronger for the beginning frames, 1% stronger midway into the attack, same strength for the ending of the attack
Down-B is 2% stronger
Roll is slightly longer.
Can do Japanese turning slide


Fox

D-Tilt is 2% weaker
Up-B has invincibility frames in the beginning
Up-B is 3% weaker and has far more horizontal knockback
Laser is 1% weaker but has greater knockback
D-smash has a horizontal knockback trajectory like (U) U-Tilt
Reflected attacks do different amounts of damage
Reflector pushes opponents away faster and futher downwards
Can do Japanese turning slide


Pikachu

Thunderjolt goes farther
F-Smash has shorter hitbox
Dash-A has less knockback.
:jigglypuff64: Jigglypuff
Down-B is 6% weaker
D-Smash has a shorter hitbox (both sides)
Can do Japanese turning slide

tl'dr
Link and Ness are a LOT better (+1 or +2 tiers)
Falcon and Fox have better recovery
Fox's D-Smash is weird and his lasers are quite different
Kirby is more amazing by a far amount
Mario and Luigi have better fireballs
Jigglypuff's Rest is weak
DK and Samus are essentially unchanged
Pika's F-Smash was nerfed

Answering the question of what you're attempting to do, find the "best" of each version, I'd say the differences make the games unique enough to have one copy of each. Link is one of my favorite characters so I like that he's better in JPN, but I believe USA was intended to be balanced better because it came second.



Thanks to ItalianBaptist (http://s9.zetaboards.com/Nintendo_64_Forever/topic/9008616) for such a detailed post.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2017, 06:08 PM by Kerr Avon »

Offline Galron

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One thing I think might be worth listing is Castlevania 64. The Japanese version saves to the cartridge rather than controller paks. The Pal version adds extra voice actor narration towards the end of the game with the boss fight with Gilles de Raise. It honestly would be pretty cool if someone could hack a rom to include the japanese save feature, with the extra voice over from the Pal version, but running in NTSC compatiblity (and proper screen position). Playing converted Pal version to NTSC, the seems to be shifted off screen to the bottom a couple of inches.

Offline Shadow_Zero

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A friend of mine had Fighter's Destiny which also was a horrible PAL port. A nice video of that even on YT: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hVgVWEJPOQ4