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Donkey Kong Original Edition
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KingMike



Joined: 04 Nov 2003
Posts: 870

PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The original is mapper 0 (no bankswapping) with 16KB PRG-ROM and 8KB CHR-ROM.
The "Original Edition" is CNROM (mapper 3) with 32KB PRG-ROM and 32KB CHR-ROM.
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Xkeeper



Joined: 04 Nov 2005
Posts: 326
Location: Henderson, NV

PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 10:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

KingMike wrote:
The original is mapper 0 (no bankswapping) with 16KB PRG-ROM and 8KB CHR-ROM.
The "Original Edition" is CNROM (mapper 3) with 32KB PRG-ROM and 32KB CHR-ROM.


The oddest thing is that about 80% of the first bank unused data. I would be kind of surprised if Nintendo couldn't somehow squish the rest of that in there, somehow.


I would also be really wary of saying this is 32K CHR-ROM, since it almost seems like an overdump (the CHR banks are all repeated).



Here's my mirror of the ROM, as well as 100 fun corruptions of it (some of which are funny as hell)

http://xkeeper.net/private/pacman/

(There's also 300 corruptions of Pac-Man but nobody cares about that)
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KingMike



Joined: 04 Nov 2003
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 12:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CNROM can only switch the entire 8KB CHR.
So, even if only a few tiles differ (as is the case with the sprites), the entire 8KB block must be repeated.
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 254
Location: Neenah, WI

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fascinating find, KM! Thanks for the info!
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Kiddo



Joined: 11 Jul 2008
Posts: 86

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This reminds me of when I pulled out the stops to get the previously-Sega-Channel-Japan-Exclusive Dyna Brothers 2 Special from the VC.

Are there any other unique editions worth checking out? I think I heard one rumor that the Nazo no Murasamejo VC pack is not an FDS image, which sounds weird... I'm not sure what else to go on though.

As for the DK Arcade in DK64, that was just a really good port job IIRC - it most certainly resembles the arcade version the most closely out of any other port, but from what I could tell the way it handles the game's difficulty curve is what makes it "not" the arcade version, in a sense.
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BMF54123
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 5:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Guys, I don't think this is a prototype at all, but an official Nintendo ROM hack. Shocked

The first half of the PRG ROM contains all the new data for the cement factory level, a copy of the title screen with the updated 2010 copyright, and a lot of code patches. The second half is identical to the US PRG1 ROM, except various routines have been hijacked to point to the new patches. A lot of them do really hackish things, like manually copying the entire sprite data page to unused RAM and shuffling it around (so the cement pies don't disappear), checking Mario's current animation frame to see if he's climbing (for the moving ladders?), and shoehorning in new data if the current level number is 02. It's also coded pretty sloppily in places, jumping to the same subroutine 5 times in a row, for example. This might explain why it glitches occasionally.

A true prototype would have certainly been built on the original source code, as Mario Bros. Classic was, not split into a bunch of patches. Whoever did this either didn't have access to the original source, or no longer had the necessary tools/knowledge to compile it.
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Lupin



Joined: 29 Nov 2010
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 6:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I realize this is slightly off-topic, but I'm having a hard time finding out more about this "expanded Mario Bros. with the arcade scenes put back in" ROM I keep stumbling across in discussions about DK Original Edition. Is this just the Euro/PAL ROM of "Mario Bros." for NES, or are we talking about the FDS "Return of Mario Bros." or even something else entirely?

Also, BMF, excellent detective work. This is some really neat information. Even if it's no longer considered an "unreleased" game, hope you guys enjoyed checking it out!

EDIT: This makes perfect sense, too, seeing as the Japanese red Wii bonus was an NES ROM-hack. It's logical that the ROM is just a hack of the NES game instead of some unreleased prototype because it "magically appeared" at the same time as this obvious-hack Super Mario Bros. variant. Wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't done by the same staff. Heck, maybe Iwata himself gave out some pointers on how to do it.

EDIT2: I see now that there was a 1993 Europe NES release called "Mario Bros." that everyone's calling "Mario Bros. Classic." Thanks!
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 254
Location: Neenah, WI

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is getting weirder every day. BMF: Why would NCL go through all the trouble only to release it in Europe, and how could Donkey Kong for NES/Famicom be built on the original code source, unless it was done before the lawsuit. I read recently that NCL doesn't own rights to the Donkey Kong code because they got sued be the ghost developer in Japan. It's why they haven't put it on VC arcade. I can see how the sloppy hacks would indicate amateur style hackery, but who does NCL have on staff that can still code this competently for NES? Poor bastard is probably locked in come cubicle somewhere. Some old fart from the 80's? Maybe the 2010 copyright used to be a 1993 copyright with the date changed?

How does this compare to the Mario Bros PAL re-release? is that as sloppy in comparison to the original Famicom release? Or does that share a bunch of FDS Kaettekita Mario data?

Lupin: "Mario Bros Classic" is called such because it was the lone entry in a Europe only series called "Classic Series." It was released late in the NES life over there, and has significant changes to the game, including new sprites, animation, and between level screens showing new enemies and how to fight them, as the arcade version had. These things, like the new "Donkey Kong" were cut due to ROM size and, likely for 1983-5, available memory mappers.

Maybe someday, we will see an NTSC patch for that PAL game to run in proper NTSC. The sped up music and gameplay when running in NTSC always bugs me. It's easily the definitive console port of that game.
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A few more things to consider; Why didn't they add in the intro, where DK climbs the center ladders and stomp around, creating the first level, and when Nintendo did DK for Game Boy, they added the cement factory to that edition.

And in the "new" cement factory, the top level that DK stands on doesn't slide him back and forth, as it did in the arcade and GB versions. Perhaps a detail that couldn't be hacked in? Is DK a fixed sprite in the NES version? Is he even considered a foreground object, or is he background tiles on the NES?
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 5:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yet another tidbit of trivia: Nintendo HAS hacked their own games in the recent past. The GBA Famicom Mini/Classic NES Series games have graphic hacks to make the sprites more visually tolerable on the 16:10 resolution GBA screen. The backgrounds run in a squashed mode, while the sprites have all had a layer blanked out.

The same trick was used prior on the e-Reader emulations, and it is a scaling option on the GBA emulator PocketNES.

Oh,and the e-Reader versions have all had their 2 Player options dummied out, and according to Wikipedia, the ultimate tool of truth (riiiight), Xevious has an apparent added auto shoot feature. I've never played Xevious on NES, so I can't confirm it.

I'm getting way too into this BS mystery. Release the files, Nintendo! LAUGHING OUT LOUD
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LocalH



Joined: 15 May 2004
Posts: 160

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pemdawg wrote:
Yet another tidbit of trivia: Nintendo HAS hacked their own games in the recent past. The GBA Famicom Mini/Classic NES Series games have graphic hacks to make the sprites more visually tolerable on the 16:10 resolution GBA screen. The backgrounds run in a squashed mode, while the sprites have all had a layer blanked out.

The same trick was used prior on the e-Reader emulations, and it is a scaling option on the GBA emulator PocketNES.

Oh,and the e-Reader versions have all had their 2 Player options dummied out, and according to Wikipedia, the ultimate tool of truth (riiiight), Xevious has an apparent added auto shoot feature. I've never played Xevious on NES, so I can't confirm it.

I'm getting way too into this BS mystery. Release the files, Nintendo! LAUGHING OUT LOUD

Don't forget the retranslation of dialogue in The Legend of Zelda, or the removal of fast-blinking colors (like when you die in Zelda II).
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Jurai



Joined: 07 Jun 2006
Posts: 118

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it's interesting that nintendo has kept on people proficient enough to perform these hacks. (that or they've outsourced them to known romhackers who are stuck under NDAs)
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Xkeeper



Joined: 04 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would imagine that they have some people skilled in knowledge of 6502/SNES.

There are a lot of little hacks in most games... I would be pretty grateful to be hooked up with copies of all the VC ROMs for comparisons to the normal ones, but alas.



As for the title screen, it's a copy of the one from the original relase, just expanded to include room for -2010.
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Lupin



Joined: 29 Nov 2010
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Curiouser and curiouser:
http://www.intsys.co.jp/english/software/index.html
Intelligent Systems takes credit for development of several of those early NES ports, including Donkey Kong. Would I.S., a company still very much involved with Nintendo, really not have access to their own source code? I realize this is early on in Nintendo's video game business, and DK's source code could have been lost, but perhaps if they DID have the NES source code, it really was just easier to patch in a couple fixes instead of reworking the source.
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ICEknight



Joined: 15 Dec 2003
Posts: 550

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lupin wrote:
Curiouser and curiouser:
http://www.intsys.co.jp/english/software/index.html
Intelligent Systems takes credit for development of several of those early NES ports, including Donkey Kong. Would I.S., a company still very much involved with Nintendo, really not have access to their own source code? I realize this is early on in Nintendo's video game business, and DK's source code could have been lost, but perhaps if they DID have the NES source code, it really was just easier to patch in a couple fixes instead of reworking the source.

If they had the source code, they would have just recompiled the ROM instead of patching it.
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KingMike



Joined: 04 Nov 2003
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pemdawg wrote:
or is he background tiles on the NES?

Yes.
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 6:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Xkeeper wrote:


Here's my mirror of the ROM
http://xkeeper.net/private/pacman/



No direct links. Let's not upset the mods, or Nintendo for that matter.
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

KingMike wrote:
Pemdawg wrote:
or is he background tiles on the NES?

Yes.



Mmm, I see. Creative programming. Simple, and effective for the time.
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BMF54123
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 9:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LocalH wrote:
Don't forget the retranslation of dialogue in The Legend of Zelda, or the removal of fast-blinking colors (like when you die in Zelda II).

We actually discovered last night that Nintendo's emulator has a special feature that will gradually cycle between colors when certain palette values are used. SMB2 uses this for bomb explosions (values $1E, $2E, and $3E, all of which appear black in standard emulators or the original hardware). It also seems to use another reserved value ($0D) for some waterfalls, which is replaced with a light blue color.
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Pemdawg



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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Location: Neenah, WI

PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BMF54123 wrote:
LocalH wrote:
Don't forget the retranslation of dialogue in The Legend of Zelda, or the removal of fast-blinking colors (like when you die in Zelda II).

We actually discovered last night that Nintendo's emulator has a special feature that will gradually cycle between colors when certain palette values are used. SMB2 uses this for bomb explosions (values $1E, $2E, and $3E, all of which appear black in standard emulators or the original hardware). It also seems to use another reserved value ($0D) for some waterfalls, which is replaced with a light blue color.


Would certainly explain the color-cycling Shellcreepers in Mario Bros. that I couldn't see when testing the ripped ROM in FCEU.

That's an interesting "feature." D4, who does a lot of the VC emultion, did this in the Genesis emu too, to update the Shinobi copyright, and pallette-swap the Spiderman boss. On the fly patching.


http://forums.sonicretro.org/index.php?showtopic=17918


Quote:
Revenge of Shinobi's release is using the REV03 rom with changes being applied on run time using a patch file.
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