Things have been quiet around here, but I assure you we’re still at it.
Appareden‘s translation draft is currently sitting at 79%, and all of that has been reinserted into the game. The worst of the bugs and crashes have been fixed, and the main assembly hacks have all been implemented, seemingly without breaking anything else.
We’ve begun work on translating and editing the images, too, after a painstaking process of ripping and unscrambling them all.
With that much of the game reinserted, we’ve been able to start an actual playthrough. Now the non-Japanese-speaking members of the team can see what the game is actually like! hollowaytape estimates he’s about 1/3 of the way through the game at this point. Here are a few things he’s seen along the way:
This actually happened yesterday, but between focus on real life and working on Appareden, we didn’t get this post out on the exact anniversary date. We’ll hit that date next year with something cool maybe. Or just another one of these posts, which should also totally count as something cool. Also, we didn’t post a one year anniversary post because we hadn’t exactly released any translation patches yet. Hell, we didn’t even have a group name until a month after that, and a website a month after that. That should give you an idea about how young the group really is.
In any case, let’s get to the meat of today’s post!
So it’s been over 2 weeks since we released our English translation patch for CRW Metal Jacket, and let me tell you, the response has been well beyond what we were expecting. As the project page states, we were expecting the game to be a “weekend project” (which turned into about a month of real work after Rusty was completed) and just something that we did to kind of improve our general abilities with games on the PC-98 platform. The game itself is relatively obscure, not too long, and has a lot of little bugs and other things that feel unfinished or cut out. That doesn’t detract too much from it being a fun game with some solid gameplay, but it forced us to kind of moderate our expectations with how it’d be received when we released the translation patch.
Before we get too much into the response to CRW Metal Jacket, we thought it’d be fun and slightly topical to mention that Pachy98 has just been used to release an updated patch for Die Bahnwelt, a game developed by Glodia and released on Sharp x68000 computers! It’s a really great looking top-down action game set in a pretty neat science fiction world. Also, you’ll notice that I said Glodia developed the game, which is why I called this a sort of topical announcement as we just recently announced we were going to begin work on translating Different Realm: The Eternal Sage, also developed by Glodia. This is the first patch to use Pachy98 that wasn’t released by us here at 46 OkuMen, so it’s a neat thing for us to see. Find out more about it over at RadicalR and Non-Directional Translations’ site!
For those of you who follow our group with any amount of frequency, this particular announcement will feel like it was a long time coming. When we started to explore our options for other games to work on when we were nearing the end of work on our first project, E.V.O.: The Theory of Evolution, we came across a developer whose projects all seemed consistently well-made and well-received in Japan, but only one of their games (Emerald Dragon) had ever been ported to consoles and seen any kind of release outside of Japanese PC systems. So despite their obvious enthusiasm and love for their work, none of their games received any kind of attention from Western audiences aside from the aforementioned Emerald Dragon for the SNES receiving a fan translation in 2014.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, that company’s name is Glodia. One of their games in particular caught our eye as a super interesting RPG with a huge amount of lore surrounding the world itself, and we’re here to officially announce that we’re working on bringing that game to Western audiences with a proper English translation.
So if you downloaded our recent release of CRW Metal Jacket, you’ll notice that the patching process is a little different from what you may be used to. It doesn’t even resemble the patching process we ended up making for E.V.O.: The Theory of Evolution or Rusty either. Well, that’s because we decided to strip it down and make it as lean as possible to pass the savings onto you. But mostly just to make it compatible with as many computers as we could. The other thing we did was make the executable itself generic and take a configuration file as an input so that we wouldn’t have to build a new patcher for every single release.
Since this tool is helping us with our releases, we figured it might help others interested in the PC-98 to release their patches as well, so we cleaned it up and slapped a name on it, written some documentation for it, and now it’s available for you guys as an early beta version.
Happy Canada 150 to all those Canadians out there. What better way to spend the 150th anniversary of a nice friendly mom and pop country than killing insurgents and terrorists in future Japan? Our translation patch for CRW Metal Jacket is now available!
It’s been a few days since we released Rusty, and the response has been pretty great! You never really know what to expect while you work on these sorts of projects, but suffice to say all of our expectations were pretty much shattered by all of the positive reactions we’ve seen from press and individuals alike. Before we talk about that, let’s talk a bit about a few of the issues people faced while trying to use our patching process for Rusty.
First up, we accidentally included the x64 version of xdelta in our executable so anyone running the patcher on a 32-bit machine was unable to patch any of the files our patcher extracted from the Rusty disk images. Our bad. That’s been fixed. Another issue that we got a bunch of reports on was a bit more difficult for us to track down, but we did end up figuring out that a common build of the game is set to read-only. Whoops! We’ve included a better error message for that. Finally, we made the GDC Clock error message a little more clear (it’s translated in the game’s files now) so that people would know exactly what to check and where to look to get the game running. Not a huge amount for us to fix for this release, thankfully. Hopefully with this newer update to the patcher and the game’s files it’ll be even easier for you guys to patch and get the English version of Rusty up and running. You can get your hands on the new version over at the Rusty project page, or here:
Onto the fun part of this post, let’s take a look at all of the things people have been saying around the web. The first responses to the release are usually found on Twitter, and there were certainly a bunch of people who retweeted our initial tweet about the release, and it was picked up soon after by @RPGSite and @Suprise_News. After that, a number of articles started popping up starting off with Indie Retro News, Siliconera, and even our friends down under at Kotaku AU wrote a nice article about it. Those are just the English publications. There were also a number of foreign articles written by Otaku Freaks (Spanish), RetroGaming History (Italian), and RetroVillage (Italian). There have also been a few videos posted on YouTube that have the patch applied already as well (Svati and Hengki).
All in all, it’s been a fun release and we’re glad that you guys seem to have been enjoying it as well. We’ll hopefully have some more things for you guys to mess with coming soon!
So it’s been a few months since we released E.V.O.: The Theory of Evolution and announced a whole slew of new projects that we’d start working on. Well, we’ve got something to show off for all of our work. Here, have a translation patch for Rusty!
The first day has already wrapped up, but there’s still another day to go. Our very own SkyeWelse has a booth setup showcasing a bunch of retro Japanese PCs, and that includes a special setup to play E.V.O.: The Theory of Evolution in English on real PC-98 hardware.
That’s not all he has at his setup, but that’s probably the one you’re most interested in if you’re reading our page at the moment. He also has an MSX and x68000 setup alongside his multiple PC-98s, so it’s a pretty neat gathering of retro Japanese computers all in all. Check his Twitter account for some more pictures and information about everything he’s brought.
For more information about Vintage Computer Festival Southeast (VCFSE), such as where to find it, tickets and all that mess, check out their website. There’s a ton of cool stuff for Retro PC enthusiasts there, so chances are you’ll find some other things that you’re interested in addition to SkyeWelse’s booth. Definitely worth it to check it out.
If you do make it and find the booth, tell SkyeWelse we sent you!
And before we sign off for this post, have another quick picture from the booth.