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My progress in FFTA hacking [Map, Events and Text editing] [Engine Hacks]

Started by Leonarth, July 16, 2018, 12:14:58 am

Diedrik

Having them join mid battle would work pretty well too I think.

So would we be able to add an arbitrary ability to a job? That would be a huge improvement. I also like the idea of custom requirements, such as how KoL disabled the priest job if you killed too many people, but unlocked the dark knight job.

I would probably use unlocked to mean that the job is in the list of jobs you have acquired, and available to mean the selected character can currently use that job.

I think it would be really interesting to have the wheels grouped by types, such as Tank, Healer, Offensive Magic, Utility, Mixed Classes, etcetera. I think that your just numbering of them and incrementing upward would work fine though, especially if you made it so only available jobs were shown. It might be interesting to make it also show the next tier of jobs, but that sounds like it would take far too much work to bother implementing checks for.

If you mean sprites from other games then Tactics Ogre: Knight of Lodis uses a nearly identical visual style if I recall, and should have most, if not all of the sprites necessary, I do not think downed sprites are commonly used in the game, but I am pretty sure that all of the classes have them. As a pie in the sky side note, it would be amazing to have the KoL classes in FFTA as an expansion to the Hume race, and a new race for the female human classes from KoL. I know the main character's sheet at least is available at the Spriter's Resource.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

ExL

Eh... once I've tried to recolour and slap ears on valkyrie from KoL, didn't end well on ears phase, something went wrong and I've scrapped it altogether :( and I so wanted spear viera with thunder and healing abilities... Oh well.
Don't forget Onimusha Tactics (also available on Spriters Resource and Sprite Database to some extent, at least they are in same style) and of course A2 is most wanted.
I always wanted vanila FFTA with as much A2 content as possible crammed in there and everything updated to A2 abilities/stats(and all items available through normal play of course).
Even though TO's features are very tempting would be great to have QoL hack staying as close to vanilla as possible :roll: You know, for those who want more than there was in original game, yet don't want radical changes like whole different mechanics for ability gaining or permanent death.
Don't think I'm discouraging you, I love TO:KoL and it would be great to see stuff from it blend into FFTA! Just that I like FFTA too and having it same, but better would be neat alongside mods with completely different flavour...

Leonarth

I don't know if there was some confusion here but I'm not making one single patch, I'm not making a mod, I'm making engine hacks people can use to make their mods, I might make a complete mod in the future but that is not what this is. If you want to mix and match the engine hacks you will have to do that yourself.

Nothing prevents you from getting the JP purchase system but not the permadeath (which isn't even included with the purchase system to begin with), or getting only the manual sort hack without anything else, these are all their own things, the patches I release are just so people can easily check them out and even those patches don't have everything in them, if you downloaded the manual sort patch you would notice that it's ONLY the manual sorting for vanilla, no purchase system, nothing else.

This is as modular as it can get, I can't imagine a way to offer more customization than this, you can download whatever parts you want, include them on a buildfile and use Event Assembler to install them EVEN on an existing mod.

However, for some stuff leaving the default vanilla systems alone is just not possible, there is just no way to add more jobs to humes without making abilities take up less space, there would be nowhere to save the AP of the new abilities to, if people want more abilities for humes (so that they can have more jobs that aren't just a mix of the other jobs) they will need to use the 1 bit abilities patch I'm working on. This patch frees up a lot of saved space for each unit so it will be mandatory for many things.

That said, the job/ability assignation rework I'm making will have a customization option so you can set it to either 1 bit or regular AP abilities, if you do set it to AP you won't be able to add more jobs to humes but you could add more jobs to other races.
This will be included in the purchase system (because the purchase system will require it), but will also be available on its own, as usual.

Anyway, have a sneak peek, Ezel with access to all Nu Mou jobs, on top of his expert job, using the job/ability assignation rework.
Of course I also made sure that other Nu Mou don't get access to Hermetic (it won't even show on their list).
And a gif that shows a soldier with a custom ability list purchasing an ability and unlocking it on another job as well, because I made them share an index.


This will take a while to get completed, pretty much every place that checks for abilities or similar needs to be adjusted, I have done a lot of progress though, the status menu is almost done, the job change menu is the only thing missing there, then after that I need to work on the job icons (those things that say stuff like SLD and GUN), both so that they are easy to change and set and so that the screen that shows which jobs can equip which items can show all jobs (I will probably make it have a page for each race, although I'm unsure what to do about experts).
After that, there's still the whole battle side of things missing, there needs to be new routines to check and make the list of abilities you can use in battle, make the enemy know which abilities they can use too, and also rework "Steal: Ability" and "Doublecast" so that they use the new ability lists.

Currently you can either set a custom list of abilities to a job or let it use the vanilla system, you can add extra checks on top of the vanilla job unlock checks and also on top of what I call "show" internally (jobs that you can see but can't change into), for example, Hermetic has a "is this character Ezel" check, if the check isn't passed the job won't even show up on the list, for monsters and other similar jobs there is a routine that always returns false that can be used.
You can also specify which jobs can't set item as their secondary command (by default alchemist and monsters) and which ones get it as a third option (by default just alchemist).
There's also an option to set which jobs are set as unlocked by default, because apparently that's hardcoded in vanilla, even if you made all jobs have no requirements they would still not show up on your command list until you visit the job change menu.

As I said this will take a while, but other than the change jobs menu this is going to be tedious work rather than challenging work so I don't have any doubt it can get done. Once it's finished I will update the purchase system with it (and a few other changes) and I will probably make a new post just for the job/ability assignation hack so that people can leave their feedback and questions about it there.

Edit:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/14hyhegmbnqnlvg/FFTA_Manual_Sorting.rar?dl=0
I have been updating the manual sorting hack silently, the link is still the same as always but a few things have changed, mostly bugfixes, I think it's complete now so here is the list:

  • Made it so the manual sorting button is always available, instead of only when sorting method is by number.

  • Fixed the last selected unit staying as selected when leaving the party menu.

  • Fixed weird stuff happening sometimes when using the manual sorting after battle.

  • Fixed the new graphics not being drawn and cleared properly when at the bottom of the screen.

  • Fixed the last selection not being cleared when R was pressed.

  • Fixed the selection indicator not being cleared sometimes when R was pressed.

  • Fixed a bug with mGBA that was unselecting units when scrolling the party menu.


  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

rrs_kai

Quote from: Leonarth on December 14, 2018, 04:16:46 am
I'm making engine hacks people can use to make their mods.

Anyway, have a sneak peek, Ezel with access to all Nu Mou jobs, on top of his expert job, using the job/ability assignation rework.
Of course I also made sure that other Nu Mou don't get access to Hermetic (it won't even show on their list).
And a gif that shows a soldier with a custom ability list purchasing an ability and unlocking it on another job as well, because I made them share an index.

Kudos Sir!!
The iron-man mod is also very nice.
I am no hacker and I never once thought such things were even possible.

I want to ask a few questions
FFTA has some things that if fixed, would make the game better.

  • FFTA has accuracy changing with direction, while FFTA2 has damage changing with direction.
    Is it possible to have directional damage in FFTA?
  • Double-hand in FFTA is very weak, can its damage bonus be increased.
    I asked this in another thread and Darthatron answered:
    Double-hand shares damage modifier with Wpn Atk+ and Mag Pow+ (20%). If the damage modifier value is changed then all the abilities will be affected.
    Wp.ATK+ boosts the damage of fight and fixed damage skills like air-render, far fist, etc., but doublehand only boosts fight damage. This makes it inferior to Wpn Atk+
    If possible try using the damage modifier from Wpn Def+ (40%).

  • Can the damage bonus for berserk status be increased (from 20%)?
    If possible try using the damage modifier from Petrify (80%).
  • There is no Magic Resistance+ support ability in FFTA, is it possible to make one.
    If space is a concern, Reveal can be removed.



I had already asked these questions a while ago in this thread, but they were not implemented.

Quote from: Leonarth on December 05, 2018, 07:57:15 pm
Today I decided to work on something I always wanted as a kid, it doesn't change the game much but I think it's a big quality of life improvement.

I also wanted manual sorting as a kid.

Leonarth

I'm not informed on how the mechanics work so there's a lot of things I wouldn't know the desired effect of:

  • What is the bonus damage you get from attacking from the back in FFTA2? Is it some % increase?

  • Does the directional damage bonus apply to abilities in FFTA2?

  • What are "fixed damage" abilities? Do you mean abilities that do the same damage as Fight? Are abilities that do 1.5x damage not boosted?

  • What does the bonus damage from berserk apply to?


I don't see any reason why any ability couldn't be given its own modifier with some ASM, Magic Resistance+ would be pretty easy considering I already made Move+1, space is not a concern, there is plenty of space available on the ROM, for a-abilities the table would need to be repointed though, but if repointed it can handle up to 65535 ability effects, way more than anyone would ever need.

Also, new sneek peak, a gif of the new job wheel working (after setting all jobs to hume for testing):
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

rrs_kai

Quote from: Leonarth on December 16, 2018, 06:05:19 am
What is the bonus damage you get from attacking from the back in FFTA2? Is it some % increase?

-In FFTA damage is 100% from any direction.
-In FFTA2 damage is 50% facing front, 75% facing side, 100% facing back.

Quote from: Leonarth on December 16, 2018, 06:05:19 am
Does the directional damage bonus apply to abilities in FFTA2?

-It applies to most abilities, except magical ones.
-In FFTA2 magic is highly accurate and does the same damage from all directions.

Quote from: Leonarth on December 16, 2018, 06:05:19 am
What are "fixed damage" abilities? Do you mean abilities that do the same damage as Fight?

-By "fixed Damage" I mean skills like air render, back-draft and all magic. Their damage is not dependent on equipped weapon.

Quote from: Leonarth on December 16, 2018, 06:05:19 am
Are abilities that do 1.5x damage not boosted?

-They are boosted by Wpn Atk+, but not by Double-hand.

Quote from: Leonarth on December 16, 2018, 06:05:19 am
What does the bonus damage from berserk apply to?

-Since berserked units only fight, it may apply only to that, I do not know.

Quote from: Leonarth on December 16, 2018, 06:05:19 am
I don't see any reason why any ability couldn't be given its own modifier with some ASM, Magic Resistance+ would be pretty easy considering I already made Move+1, space is not a concern.

Thank you :) Any comments on Double-hand?

In case you wanted to know if anything else needed fixing, maybe you can also check these out:
Damage>MP cause HP damage to use MP instead.
"Damage>MP" in FFTA damage does not overflow into HP when MP becomes zero.
"Damage>MP" in FFTA2 damage overflows into HP when MP becomes zero.
eg:
in FFTA, 300 damage on target with 50 max mp ---> 50 mp damage, remaining 250 is truncated. Animation still displays 300.(This is a easy way to avoid a large amout of damage. 999 hp damage can be easily avoided with a minimal 1 mp)
in FFTA2, 300 damage on target with 50 max mp ---> 50 mp damage and then 250 hp damage. Animation displays 300 (damage overflows into HP).
A method to achieve this has been posted (hex changes) but it did not behave well for me. Times-like not activating when its supposed to, only overflowing some times.

Maybe you can also check out this other support ability called "Evade magic", its similar to "Reflex".
Reflex - avoids all fight damage.
Evade Magic - avoids all magic. (This exists in FFTA2 because magic is highly accurate).
There is a check box in the FFTA-AIO for skills that checks if they are physical/magical, maybe use with this.

dck

The support abilities that mess with damage in vanilla would benefit a lot from being able to modify them, currently we can only cover the accuracy but there's scenarios like doublehand that make no sense whatsoever in their current state:

2. Attacker's Support Check

       The various Support abilities are checked for bonuses to Att.

       2a. If the Attacker has Weapon Att+ set and the Ability is Physical:
             Att = [Att * 307 / 256] (approximate 20% increase)

       2b. If the Attacker has Magic Pow+ set and the Ability is Magical:
             Att = [Att * 307 / 256] (approximate 20% increase)

       2c. If the Attacker has Turbo MP set and the Ability has a greater
           than 0 MP Cost:
             Att = [Att * 332 / 256] (approximate 30% increase)

       2d. If the Attacker has Doublehand set, the Ability being used is
           Fight and the weapon being used is single-handed, while not holding a shield:
             Att = [Att * 307 / 256] (approximate 20% increase)

  3. Attacker's Status Check

       Now the Attacker's Statuses are looked at for bonuses to Att.

       3a. If the Attacker is Berserk and the Ability is Physical:
             Att = [Att * 307 / 256] (approximate 20% increase)


These are then modified by other things like whether Att or MPow stat buffs or debuffs are present, giving a +/-10% to physical or magical damage if so. For comparison the stat buffs for defensive stats are 60% just like the protect and shell spells are, which is kind of crazy since they stack.
Although it should be kept in mind defense points in FFTA are in practice 1/2 as effective as offense, so it's not as ridiculous.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown
  • Discord username: adri#1824

rrs_kai

Something that has not been solved till now would be..."Doubleshot"

Doubleshot - Hit the target twice for half damage on each hit.

Changing the damage bytes in the AIO does not affect it. Even giving it an MP cost and combining it with Turbo MP does not boost damage.

Diedrik

That wheels switching looks awesome.

Do you plan to incorporate customizable Innate abilities to your ability overhaul? That would be pretty great.

What emulator do you use for testing? I have been mostly using RetroArch and an android emulator for playtesting, but I do not think either of those lets you monitor addresses with much ease.

When the recruit menu pops up in Vanilla, how does it generate the units? Are they randomly generated, or are they pulled from somewhere? It would be pretty awesome if we could get a TO style recruit option in cities. (picking race and level, and paying a price based on that.)

I would also be interested in cannabilizing the clan skill system for saved space.

I feel like we are derailing your topic, we might want to start a separate one to cover some of these questions.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

Leonarth

I'm fine with questions here, I guess at some point I should start a compilation topic with download links, this would stay as the discussion topic, for now I don't think it's a big issue though.

I have no clue how the game generates the recruitment units, I haven't looked into it at all, I think I saw some nightmare module at some point so that would be nice documentation to start with.
I was thinking about reworking the prison into a recruitment center, I haven't done any research on that so this is just a random idea.

For testing I use No$gba Debugger, when I play casually I use mGBA. I also use mGBA when I want to get certain graphics from games.

I love that you guys are leaving so many ideas here but please understand that I will take a while to work on them, I want to focus on one thing at a time. I'll be looking here when I want a new idea to work on.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

Diedrik

I have been keeping an as up to date an index of many of your patches as I am aware of, you can check the FFT/TO flavor patch list pinned topic for some of them, so no need to worry about that for now.

That would be pretty awesome, and honestly would make a lot of thematic sense even if it remained a prison.

Okay, thanks.

Do not worry, I think alot of us are looking for information, and an estimate of feasibility/difficulty, we do not expect you to do all of it yourself, certainly not anytime soon, as awesome for everyone else as that would be.

Edit: Bad news, the most recent version of the JP Skill Purchase, and Manual Sorting, do not appear to be compatible.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

Leonarth

I haven't shown anything on events in a long time so here's a new thing I made:

This event allows you to skip the first two fights, but still name the main character and the clan, all without breaking rumors and missions (as far as I can tell).
It skips the tutorial on placing world map symbols, too.

I have a lot of tiny hacks like that, I can't really think of a good way to distribute them so I just add them as options to the JP purchase system, I could also add an option to not install the JP purchase system in case people only want the small stuff, or I could make a dropbox folder with all of them and trust people to know how to install them. What do you guys think?

Also, I made a minor update to the JP purchase system to fix some broken stuff, it shouldn't affect the .ups files but if you downloaded the buildfile please redownload it.

Work on the job/ability assignation rework is going pretty well, it has many features already and all that's remaining is the most tedious stuff, like making sure "Steal: Ability", "Doublecast" and the Morpher job are all working, stuff like that. Once it's done it should also mean that the 1bit abilities for the JP purchase are complete, since I'll be able to replace the core ability checking routines to change all other routines at once.

Here's the new "can equip" menu, with a page for each race in order to support up to 42 jobs for each playable race, you can also customize which races show up in the menu so if you want to remove all races but humes you can do that:

If you pay attention you'll notice some new icons, which are another feature that will be included, although they wouldn't show up by default (I changed the special character's races so they would show up).
Another thing to note is that only jobs that have been unlocked will show up on this list, and there is a way to flag a job to just never show in case someone wants to do that. This could be used for things like Chocobo Knight having a job entry for each color, but only showing on this list once, or to have new female versions of existing jobs not show up either, making only the female-exclusive ones show up.

I'm starting to wonder if the new ability lists are worth the effort, there's not too much work left to do so I'll try to complete it but I think the ability to control job changing for all races and all that is the main feature here, the ability lists don't really add anything new, they just make adding/removing abilities from a job easier. I started this whole thing because I didn't want to hardcode a way for viera Red Mages to learn "Cure" at the same time as viera White Mages do for the JP purchase system, I guess that got a bit out of hand.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

rrs_kai

Quote from: Leonarth on December 21, 2018, 03:58:03 pm
I haven't shown anything on events in a long time so here's a new thing I made:

This event allows you to skip the first two fights, but still name the main character and the clan, all without breaking rumors and missions (as far as I can tell).
It skips the tutorial on placing world map symbols, too.

quality of life :cool:

EDIT:
Quote from: Leonarth on December 17, 2018, 12:30:09 pm
I love that you guys are leaving so many ideas here but please understand that I will take a while to work on them, I want to focus on one thing at a time. I'll be looking here when I want a new idea to work on.

Sorry to have burdened you.
I have compared the damage formulae in FFTA and FFTA2 and found that its better not to implement directional damage in FFTA.

Leonarth

Small Christmas update, today I decided to make something I always wanted as a kid, as a kind of gift to my child self

When I was a kid I heard from my cousins that morphers could transform into monsters and use their abilities, to me that was the coolest thing I had ever heard about this game so I started training a Nu Mou just to see it, once I had a morpher I found out I also needed a hunter so I had to get one of those too.
When I finally figured out how to capture a monster I was extremely disappointed by the fact that after "transforming" morphers would look like they were late to school, waving their arms and sweating, nothing to do with what I had imagined, they only transformed for abilities and then immediately went back to looking silly.

So here I am, 15 years latter, fixing the issue and making my imagination into reality:



This will be included as an option for the job/ability assignation rework.
In case it's not clear yet, this engine hack makes morphers actually transform into monsters, changing their aspect and their movement types.
Morphers will still use the same palette they were using before morphing so player morphers will always be blue or green.
I call it: Morphing Morphers Morph.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

Blunderpusse

That is so awesome. So basically, imagine I assign the "Morph" command to a Blue Mage (for example), that Blue Mage could also morph into monsters without glitching the graphics?
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown
"You sure are a keen observer of the obvious, kupo!"

Leonarth

To give morph to blue mages you would also need to port the abilities from the nu mou to the hume race, there wouldn't be enough space to do that without replacing existing hume abilities on the list, you would need to replace existing hume abilities or use the 1bit abilities thing I'm working on (so no AP).

Other than that, yeah, it should work as long as the name of the moveset is Morph.

I think other races being able to morph is not a highlight of this though, custom animations aren't that hard to do, you could have just made new animations for the blue mage being morphed, or used the standing ones for it.

The custom animation talk reminded me I should finish my hunter gria too.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

Zeke_Aileron

Gria's in FFTA, hmm now I'm interested, and the Morpher thing is very nice.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown
  • Discord username: Zeke Aileron™#0606

ExL

Narrator: "...and Mighty Morphing Morph transforms into giant(or not so) mecha flan!"
Actually that's probably the coolest thing I've seen in isometric tRPGs!
It only saddens me how to see all other cool stuff with abilities tied to new ability buying system as I love AP system(if it's misunderstanding of mine, I'm very sorry, I've got that other changes are modular, but not this one)... Nonetheless progress is great, you doing to FFTA things no one ever imagined being possible! :shock:

Leonarth

I think you misunderstood what's going on.

The job/ability assignation rework system does not need the JP purchase system, the JP purchase system needs the job/ability assignation rework, these are two completely different things:

The JP purchase allows for abilities to be bought, with this new way to get abilities and the job/ability assignation rework working together, we can have 1bit abilities and save a bunch of character data space for other things. 1 bit abilities will be an option in the JP purchase system, not mandatory, at least that's what I hope.
This system also includes the movement abilities, which replace combos. Combos would be completely broken anyway since you would be able to use them once every turn, since you would get JP awarded for just attacking.
I am thinking of ways to get combos back though: Maybe a FFTA2 style thing, a chance at the beggining of the turn to get the Combo command for that turn only, this would only happen if you had mastered the job, or it would happen more often the more abilities of that job you have mastered (compared to the total number of abilities on that job), the combo performed would depend on the current job.

The job/ability assignation rework is a completely different thing which doesn't need the JP purchase system for anything (unless you want 1bit abilities), it allows the assgination of custom lists of indexes of abilities to jobs instead of the vanilla approach of from X to Y, it adds new options to make expanding the number of playable jobs and races possible and it adds new editable options for things like default unlocked jobs, job unlock conditions, job icons and jobs that can't use items.
None of those things have anything to do with removing AP and in fact by default the system uses AP to check if abilities are mastered.

The morpher thing will be included with the job/ability assignation rework because I felt it's too small of a thing to go on it's own, since it's job related that seemed the best place to put it in, if you guys want the thing on its own I can do that too. Or you could wait for the job/ability assignation rework and grab it from there, same thing.
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown

Blunderpusse

With all the college assignments, I can totally wait.

Btw, with the job/ability assign rework you can add the job wheel to special characters like Ezel. Does it work the other way around, like, giving special job ONLY to Marche or Ritz? (I apologize if the answer is obvious and failed to understand it :p).
  • Modding version: Other/Unknown
"You sure are a keen observer of the obvious, kupo!"