It\'s taken a long time... at last, it\'s here!

Posted by Moogie on 23rd August 2005 at 11:50am
That's right folks - sing it loud and sing it clear - the Final Conflict translation patch is here!

But, no big event like this would be complete without a long blurb first ;)

...

When I first found out about Final Conflict, I was excited at the prospect of playing a 'new' Shining game. Despite being in Japanese, I was never put off playing it through - like many other fans.

The obvious references it had to Shining Force and Shining Force II made me curious and eventually I decided to start learning Japanese, in a bid to understand it. A year of hard work followed, cross referencing various Japanese dictionaries with online tools, and my basic understanding of the language. At the end of this year, the bulk of the translation was complete and fairly accurate. Fans could finally enjoy playing the game and have a clue what was going on.

Over the years that followed, various individuals and groups contacted me asking permission to use my script in their attempts to hack it into the ROM. None ever got back to me.

Then one day early this year, out of the blue, a rather interesting email arrived in my inbox from a chap by the name of "z80 gaiden". Not only was he claiming success in his previously unannounced venture into hacking the FC ROM, but had also provided an attachment.

Dubiously, I opened it... and on patching my ROM, got very excited!

It worked.

English text... in Final Conflict!

The great news was, all the hard work had already been done and all he needed was the translation of a few hundred short lines from the game to be translated. Naturally I got to work right away.

Unfortunately, before I could finish, z80 lost his ISP connection indefinately and informed me I should locate others to assist in finishing the project. Several peeps (you know who you are, and thank you indeed!) kindly volunteered to have a look, and see if they could understand. Meanwhile, I worked further on the translation and chapter title graphics.

Joy of joys - z80 returned, and not a moment too soon, as no-one else had yet managed to make any progress (do bear in mind that this project took z80 years and was anything but easy).

Various emails back and forth between us gave me the understanding to compile alterations to the ROM's new script myself, and so I continued to work. z80 got the new graphics into the ROM and then another email out of the blue - this time, from my friend and fellow SFCer, Aspartate. With help from Landius, the two had worked on revising my original translation to improve the accuracy. Fantastic!

Obviously, these things take time... but within weeks another chapter of revision arrived and slowly but surely the new, improved script was added to the game.

z80 has been a great support and his patience most admirable. I cannot thank him enough for his efforts, and I'm sure everyone here is very grateful too!

I've now played through the game enough to be quite sure the script fits in right, and received a few file updates from z80 to improve the package as a whole.

Yes, that's right folks - the package. Not only will the IPS patch be available for you to download at the end of this news article, but also a package containing all the relevant files for putting other translations into the game. The data and programs in the package may also be of help in modifying other Shining ROMs, particularly the Gaidens but also some of the Genesis games use a similar compression method. Who knows, maybe it can even be of help to the SFIII translation project.

One thing is for certain though - it's good to finally have a previously Japanese-only Shining game fully playable in English now. Let's hope it's the first of many!

    Now, before I link to the files, a few notes:
  • I chose not to modify the game's title screen, as it looks much better in Japanese than trying to make 'Side Story' line up and look good ;)
  • I also chose not to modify the Japanese text, 'Suika', on Suika's portrait - no point in writing 'watermelon', as it defeats the whole Ikasu/Suika joke.
  • Some lines of the script (muddles etc) don't crop up that often in the game, as such I haven't been able to check that every single line is in the right place, but they seem to be. If there are major mistakes (very doubtful!) please contact me to right them.
  • There appears to be a soundtest in the game, but I've no idea how to access it.
  • Most important of all, I hope you enjoy the game!


Download the IPS Patch ~ 50KB
Download the IPS Patch and Tools Package ~ 1MB

Once again, huge thanks to all involved. This has certainly been a community effort!