Monday, January 23, 2023

Escape from Hell

Time flies, I didn't notice that my last post is already 3years old... 

In the meantime, I have worked on several engines, with other devs... But today, I passed an important step in the development of Escape from Hell, an old games from Electronic Arts. I loved its spirit when it was released, played it a bit but never managed to go really far in it. So, I worked on it based on good memories and, of course, that this game is particularly obscure and unknown.

I created a PR on 23/11/2022. The game was mostly reversed, as usual without sound, but it wasn't working so well. It was riddled with bugs, savegames weren't implemented, a lot of functions and variables were using generated names... In short, it was good, but clearly not enough to be sure I would finish it some day. I didn't want to have (yet another) unfinished engine merged in master... So the PR was tagged Not To Be Merged. I got a nice pile of comments from Eugene, that was helpful to improve the engine :)

Today, exactly 2 months later, I finished implementing the last sound function, and music has been working for two days. I have given a name to all the functions and most of the variables, savegames are working, and I squashed a lot of bugs in the process...I'm now confident that the engine will be finished soon, so I modified the PR so that the team knows it's worth looking at it and consider a merge after some more polishing :)

So, don't hesitate to build it and give it a try :) It's a keyboard only RPG game, it's hard, but it's fun and you end teaming with various bad guys, such as Stalin or Gengis Khan... :)

Have fun!


Friday, August 23, 2019

New Side Activity - Dark Things

As I never manage to stay calm and as I currently don't have an engine I'm actively working on, I started a couple of days ago a new side activity: Translating to French an indie game called "Dark Things - Detective Quest", which is available on Apple Store and Google Play.

This game caught my interest for several good reasons (an adventure game with big pixels, what else?). The chapters are quite short but they are fun and the scenario is pretty good imho.

At first, I essentially reported a couple of missing translations (the team is Russian), but I quickly proposed to work on the French translation and they accepted :) I guess during the process I'll also challenge the English translation which is perfectible.

The result is not yet visible as the team is currently focused on Chapter 4, but here is my progress so far:

Menu, character names, etc: Done
Chapter 1: First pass done, waiting to be able to test it in the game to fix the last issues
Chapter 2: Not yet started
Chapter 3: Not yet started
Xmas special: Not yet started

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Some news about obscure games...

It's been a while I haven't posted something about what I'm doing... So here it is.

There's nothing new concerning Kingdom: The Far Reaches. I'm still waiting for a hand with the MVE player, and TMM (who implemented the MVE missing opcodes in ffmpeg) is still super super busy. So, well, let's consider it's rotting. :(

I made some very small progress on Adventures of Robin Hood (lilliput engine) on the sound, but it's still very imperfect. To implement it, I think I should add a mixer, we'll see...

More recently, let's say a week ago or so, I started documenting Escape From Hell. I currently have half of the functions renamed and most of the structures. I'm not really sure it'll be an engine for ScummVM as it doesn't use a mouse, but it's fun to make good progress on something I vaguely looked at more than 10 years ago. At the time, I guessed the compression format, picture format, and enough of the maps and monsters to display maps. I even brute forced the encryption...

All that is now far more clear with an eye in the binary :)

Ho, I forgot to mention: Escape From Hell is using a modified Wasteland engine, in case it rings a bell :)

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Drenn Weekly Post #3

So, here is the next blog post written by Drenn in the scope of the GSoC.

A lot of nice progress as usual, ... so don't miss it!

It's There!

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Drenn Weekly post 2

You liked Drenn post #1? You'll love #2

Here is the link:
Drenn Weekly post 2

As I mentioned in the previous post, we still have issues with Planet for some reasons, so I'll keep putting links here until it's fixed, or until the end of GSoC, whatever comes first.

You could also prefer to directly check Drenn's blog. It's There!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Drenn weekly post 1

We had, and still have, some issues to synchronize Drenn's blog with planet (in the scope of GSoC 2018). I therefore decided to post links to his blog posts so it's visible on Planet.

Here is the first blog entry posted by Drenn more than a Week ago. He made impressive progress on his Star Trek engine. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Kingdom on hold

I've finally reversed the whole hardcoded logic again for the demo (because BinDiff wasn't able to handle small changes in giant functions). The positive part of that is that it made me point some small bugs I fixed in the full version.

At this point, the engine is only missing the MVE video player. I don't think I'm able to handle that myself despite TMM pushed the missing opcodes in ffmpeg. So, the engine is on hold undefinitely (at least until someone is willing to help me with that player).

I'm still tossing a coin to decide what I'll work on next.