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Post subject: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:03 pm 
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Hey guys,

Haven't posted here in a while (but I’m a great lurker :P) but I was wondering, how do you guys select your projects?
The reason I'm asking is because I know some titles that might interest WildBill but I don't want to start a "please translate this or that" thread here or spam anyone with unsolicited work :P

Keep up the (awesome!) work mates!


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:33 am 
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Amon_Re wrote:
Hey guys,

Haven't posted here in a while (but I’m a great lurker :P) but I was wondering, how do you guys select your projects?
The reason I'm asking is because I know some titles that might interest WildBill but I don't want to start a "please translate this or that" thread here or spam anyone with unsolicited work :P

Keep up the (awesome!) work mates!


The projects we have here or have done are usually projects the the coordinator
has some interest in or brought with them when the team was formed. As for selection
of other projects, well, I'm not sure how the others deternmine what they see as a
potential project.

What do you have in mind?


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 7:54 pm 
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Yeah, it just tends to be a matter of...

Hey, you know what would make a great project?

No what?

This XXX game over here!

Would you guys help me work on it?

Yes/No response and reasoning.

(Or you're informed someone else is already working on it)

The rest of the group may or may not chimes in.

Project picked up/not picked up.

At least that is kind of how we have worked on things.

So, if you want to suggest something, sure we'll be glad to listen and give it a fair shake.

It might not be picked up initially, but we have projects we're keeping in mind for future endeavors too and having more wouldn't hurt.


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:03 pm 
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Well I've recently started exploring the good old MSX platform and found out there are loads of RPG games on this, some even quite excellent, such as the Xak series (2 of these are already translated even though the translation for Xak 1 is very rough around the edges)

So I was wondering if you guys would be interested in tackling MSX?


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:08 pm 
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I guess it depends a lot on the complexity of the platform itself, as well
as trying to judge if the group has interest in this or that particular game
for it.

Project selection has a lot of behind the scenes steps that the end user
of translation patches may or may not even be aware of, but it all
begins with technical feasability.


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 11:05 pm 
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So, basically, just throw a title at you guys & see if it sticks? :P As for the feasibility, the MSX uses as Z80 which shouldn't be a stranger to many a rom hacker and the gfx & sound hardware is relatively simple as far as I know, it's not a completely alien design anyway.

Another platform that might be of interest is the PC-Engine, which also features some beautiful RPG games.


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:35 am 
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I think Bongo' is the main factor in project selection since he's the one that pretty much does all the hacking. All the recent activity in the past few years probably wouldn't have happened if it weren't for him. There's also the fact that he pretty much works on the NES/SNES and the MSX is ways off from that. Either he'd have to be interested or D-D have to find another hacker.


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 11:35 am 
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Yeah, I used to do some Z80 assembly but that was years ago and long forgotten.

Bongo` I think has never touched Z80 assembly, though with what he knows of NES/SNES hacking and assembly now, I'm sure it wouldn't be that far of a stretch to learn. The issue is not learning the assembly itself, the challenge is learning how the hardware utilizing that assembly works. At least for me that was the hurdle that I never got over while learning SNES assembly.

I really should have stuck with the Gameboy assembly, I was really making progress but oh well. What is done is done :)

BTW: I remember someone saying on here that the gameboy doesn't have a good tracer? The gameboy has had a good tracer longer than the SNES has had one. IMO: A better tracer than the SNES all around. But that is my opinion. Find the development version of no$gmb with tracer. I'm sure its still out there (I can't remember if the tracer came standard or it was a separate version.)


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:05 pm 
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Hello, Amon_Re. Well, while working frantically on other tasks not related to this hobby, I've been thinking about the question you raised. It seems that everyone has just about covered the waterfront.

From my perspective, how we choose our projects has mainly to do with what different members either started or helped someone else work on years ago. Explanations for our releases are the same as the reasons why we haven't finished many of the games on our list. We need three finely-coordinated elements to complete a project: coding, translation, and production. Diminish any one of these categories, and our efforts will fall short of the goal - a releasable patch that most players will enjoy.

Although we have been blessed with translators in recent years, a major factor that limits our productivity is the small size of our core group. For example, if tomorrow, translators handed us five scripts for RPGs on five different consoles, and five hackers outside our core group coded fully functional insertion systems and made them available to us, we would not have adequate personnel to finish the production of those five games in short order. Reverse engineering is a painstaking process that does not very often shoot straight back to the roots, then move forward steadily. With many projects, it's three steps forward and two steps back, infinitum! That, along with the loss of key team members or long periods of inactivity, is why some of our works have required up to a decade to complete - that, and sometimes the tedious nature of learning curves thrown in.

As Red Soul pointed out, what has contributed to much of our success is the tight-knit disposition of our six core members who usually pull together to surge toward completion of a late-stage patch. Add a few additional team members from outside the core group to specific efforts - people who love a particular game especially and are willing to contribute countless hours helping build the patches, and we all end up in good places, eventually.

Finally, most of us have careers to manage, households to maintain, children to rear, etc. Translating games is just like any other leisure-time activity such fishing, hunting, model airplane building, or the like. We try to budget time and hope something unrelated doesn't pop up and disrupt our plans!

So, never be shy about asking about specific games you would enjoy playing in English. A comment such as, "Gee, xxxx RPG looks like a super game. I wonder if anyone has thought about building a patch for it," will always be well received here and maybe even provide substance for a lively discussion.


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Post subject: Re: Project selection proces
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 3:56 pm 
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taskforce wrote:
BTW: I remember someone saying on here that the gameboy doesn't have a good tracer? The gameboy has had a good tracer longer than the SNES has had one. IMO: A better tracer than the SNES all around. But that is my opinion. Find the development version of no$gmb with tracer. I'm sure its still out there (I can't remember if the tracer came standard or it was a separate version.)


I think the assembled enabled No$gmb is a separate version that requires a fee
to activate, if I remember correctly.


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