Wii Virtual Console Forum

Topic: It looks that VC games really have bugfixes

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Teppo_Holmqvist

1. Posted:

Neogaf's Sixtyfortyfive has found out something really fascinating about Virtual Console and its inner workings today. Like everyone else, he was thinking that virtual console games are untouched rom files.

This was until certain obsessed fan wanted to fully complete Phantasy Star IV and get every character up to level 99. As most diehard Phantasy Star fans know, this actually launches bug in the original game, with stats going berserk, and characters starting to forget their abilities. But in the VC-version this bug has been fixed!

Sixtyfortyfive was so interested about this that he started to do some hexediting to Phantasy Star IV's VC-channel. What he found out was interesting.The rom file inside the channel is literally same as you can find from original cartridges. The channel, however, applies simple patch over the game when it is booted. Depending on which version of rom is run, this patch fixes various bugs, like some minor graphical glitches on japanese version, and aformentioned bug when someone hits 99th level. There is also commented (meaning that it won't be run) patch that allows player to get experience much faster. It was probably used to test lvl 99 bug.

The significance of this is pretty big. It means that Nintendo isn't just dumping rom files out, but actually debugging and bug fixing games before release. Which probably explains the slow speed with the releases. It also means that Nintendo could relatively easily put 50hz/60hz switch on the games, or sell expansions to its old games.

Edited on by Teppo_Holmqvist

Teppo_Holmqvist

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jbrodack

2. Posted:

Not that I've played games using the virtual console but it seems that the majority of games are untouched with a few being edited in a bad way like with tecmo bowl removing all player names and such.

Still an interesting find. Is what the vc channnel does similar to an .ips patch for roms? The fact that the channel can do custom things actually makes me want more out of vc console releases such as online multiplayer support or leaderboards. I know some PC emulators have online support so official online support would be awesome.

This also confirms that they could do more with virtual console release but simply don't. There should be more cases of games with enhancements or special modes as well as certain series getting bundled together. If you look at the emulation community there's already tons of this stuff out there which leaves the virtual console releases behind what you can get on emulators using some of the more well made hacks. An even bigger issue is import games being released untranslated. DoReMi Fantasy was released untranslated despite the fact that there is a fan translated hack available which makes that option more appealing than the official release. As far as I know Sin and Punishment was the only import game to receive an actual translation. Do let me know if I'm wrong on any of this.

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vio

3. Posted:

Eh? That's pretty cool, but I don't know if credit goes to Nintendo for this one. It's likely Sega who patched Phantasy Star 4.

vio

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King_Elemento

4. Posted:

As long as they don't edit out MissingNo. if they release Pokémon Red and Blue as VH releases.
I'm not bothered about the Link's Awakening glitches, since they'd only bother with the DX release.
Then again, since they left the Minus World in Super Mario Bros., I doubt they'll fix any "legendary" bugs like those.

Also note that my examples are first party, yours is from Sega.

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Teppo_Holmqvist

5. Posted:

vio wrote:

Eh? That's pretty cool, but I don't know if credit goes to Nintendo for this one. It's likely Sega who patched Phantasy Star 4.

Yeah, but Nintendo provided interface for doing it. Knowing how strict company Nintendo is when it comes to bugs, it is not hard to believe they are patching their own games too.

Teppo_Holmqvist

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Adamant

6. Posted:

Ghosts'n Goblins has a bugfix too - originally, there was an invisible enemy at level 6 that would suddenly become visible and attack you once you had climbed the ladder next to him about halfway, making him extremely hard to avoid. In the VC version, he's always visible and doesn't attack unless you go near him.

Adamant

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Teppo_Holmqvist

7. Posted:

jbrodack wrote:

Still an interesting find. Is what the vc channnel does similar to an .ips patch for roms? The fact that the channel can do custom things actually makes me want more out of vc console releases such as online multiplayer support or leaderboards. I know some PC emulators have online support so official online support would be awesome..

I guess that you have used Kaillera, and you have probably noticed how badly it works over longer distances. The problem is that unlike the games actually built for online, emulation doesn't have any way to compensate packet loss or lag. It needs to send full frame information through the network, and if there is even slightest hic-up in the connection, things go sour. While Nintendo could implement it, it would cause lots of complaints from people that wouldn't comprehend tech behind. This is also why all retrogames at XBLA, are, in fact, ported instead of emulated.

Edited on by Teppo_Holmqvist

Teppo_Holmqvist

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Sean_Aaron

8. Posted:

Well, if Ikari Warriors ever appears for NES they better fix it. I remember renting the game and spending an entire evening with a mate playing it through to the bitter end only to have the graphics glitch out on the final mission and the game became pretty much unplayable. Hilarious, but frustrating at the same time; Pole's Big Adventure has a loving tribute to this kind of thing which was not uncommon back in the 8-bit days!

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KoKoO_Psy

9. Posted:

Gunstar needs it's interlace mode for 480p.

KoKoO_Psy