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Tutorial Edit Trainer Backsprites in Pokemon Emerald

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  #1    
Old March 28th, 2013 (1:51 PM). Edited June 3rd, 2013 by Line3007.
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Line3007 Line3007 is offline
     
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    Hey guys!
    I wanna show you how you can change and edit the backsprites of the main characters in Pokemon Emerald.

    I was looking for a tutorial about this myself for a very long time, but I never found anything; only for other games like Ruby or FireRed. But then I finally figured it out! So here goes:

    The things you need
    • Your Emerald ROM (remember to make a backup first)
    • VBA (VisualBoyAdvance)
    • APE (Advance Pallette Editor)
    • TMA (Tile Molester Alternative)
    • unLZ GBA
    • Photoshop (or any other image editing program like Paint, but I used Photoshop)

    In this tutorial, I will try to change Brendan's backsprite.

    Step 1: Saving the pallette
    You will need to change the pallette of the sprites, so therefore, the first thing you do is open up unLZ GBA. Then you go to 1939 (Brendan's normal trainer sprite) and copy the Pallette Offset, which is 00D61A30.
    Spoiler:



    Step 2: Exporting the pallette for TMA
    Open APE and paste in the Offset and click on Load. Make sure "Compressed Pallette" is checked.
    Spoiler:


    There you have Brendan's Pallette.
    When you want to make your own new pallette, you will need this pallette as a template, so go to Edit > Actual Pallette > Export ... and save the pallette as something your image editing program can handle. I use Photoshop, so I save it as a .act-file. Make sure you export again as a .tpl-file for TMA.
    Spoiler:


    Keep APE open for now. We have to use it again later.

    Step 3: Getting the backsprites
    Open TMA and then open your ROM.
    Spoiler:


    Then go to Navigate > Go to ...
    Insert this Hex: D66C84
    Spoiler:


    Then it should look like this:
    Spoiler:


    That is not quite handy to work with, so we need to change some things before editing the sprites.

    Follow these steps in this order:
    1) Go to: View > Block Size > Custom ... and change the numbers to 8.


    2) Go to Image > Canvas Size ... and change it to 128x128.


    3) Click on the arrow pointing to the left (Tile Back) exactly 64 times. Now it looks like this:
    Spoiler:


    4) Click on the minus symbol (Byte Back) exactly 4 times. Now it looks better.
    Spoiler:


    5) Go to Pallette > Import From > Another File ... and choose the brendan-pallette.tpl you exported from APE. Then it looks ready to work with.
    Spoiler:


    Now remember, we are only working with Brendan right now, so ignore that the other characters look a bit strange. When you have to edit for example Wally's sprites you of course have to use his pallette offset in APE.

    6) Now go to Edit > Copy to ... and save the .png-file.
    Spoiler:


    Step 4: Make your own backsprite
    Now open up the saved .png-file in your image program.
    Spoiler:


    Index the image with 16 colors. Now you just have to edit all you want to. Use the pecil tool to do that. Right now you don't have to think about the colors you use. Only that you use the same color where the colors have to be the same.

    Now, as an example, I have poorly removed his backpack:

    And I also wanna change the colors of him, so I have to make my own new pallette file.


    In Photoshop I have changed the pallette of this file so it looks like how I want it to.

    And now it would be easy if we could just save this new pallette as a our new pallette file, but unfortunately the pallette of this indexed image does not fit the one in the game. So that is why we have to make it manually. This is how to do it:

    1) Create a new random file in the image program (eg Photoshop).

    2) Make the image indexed and load Brendan's pallette file exported from APE, the original pallette.

    3) Here comes the hard part: All the colors you changed in the backsprite file, you have to write down or remember in some way. Write down the original colors hex code (example #ffffff for white) and write down the hex code of the color you changed it to. Then in the file you just opened and indexed, you do the same color changes.

    So if your pallette of the backsprite image looks like this:


    Your new correct pallette should end up looking like this:


    Save this pallette, and go back to the backsprite file in Photoshop. Undo all your color changes and save the file as an indexed .png-file. Now you can close Photoshop etc.

    Step 5: Replace Brendan's pallette with your own
    Go back to APE and import your newly saved pallette.
    Spoiler:


    Save the ROM by clicking Replace.
    Then click on Load. Then you would se two pallettes, that are the same.
    Spoiler:


    That is just perfect!

    Step 6: Get the new backsprite into the game
    Now go back to TMA. Go to View > Paste From ... and choose your new backsprite file. It should look like this:
    Spoiler:


    And now comes an important part, that allows you to save your ROM.
    Go to View > Zoom > 100% (or less if you have a small screen).
    Then click in the grey area next to the image to deselect the image. It should look like this: (The white border gone)
    Spoiler:


    Now you can click on the Save icon in the top.

    Step 7:
    Test it out!

    The pallette of Brendan also changed here:


    And here is what we are looking for:


    Yaaaaay :D
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      #2    
    Old April 6th, 2013 (12:12 PM).
    PKMN Trainer S PKMN Trainer S is offline
       
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      I'm sorry but. No pictures...
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        #3    
      Old April 11th, 2013 (4:27 AM).
      Shiny Quagsire's Avatar
      Shiny Quagsire Shiny Quagsire is offline
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        Might I suggest simply using NSE 2.X? It basically funtions exactly like TME, but it a TON easier to use. Just open it, load the ROM, go to 'Navigate,' then put D61A30 for the palette and D66C84 for the image, and 8 for the width and height.
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        Old April 12th, 2013 (3:45 AM).
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          this can be easily done by nse2.
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            #5    
          Old June 3rd, 2013 (9:50 AM).
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            Quote:
            Originally Posted by PKMN Trainer S View Post
            I'm sorry but. No pictures...
            Sorry! I'm new ; The images should be there now...
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              #6    
            Old June 19th, 2013 (10:23 AM).
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            Line3007 Line3007 is offline
               
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              Quote:
              Originally Posted by shiny quagsire View Post
              Might I suggest simply using NSE 2.X? It basically funtions exactly like TME, but it a TON easier to use. Just open it, load the ROM, go to 'Navigate,' then put D61A30 for the palette and D66C84 for the image, and 8 for the width and height.
              Hahaha, thank you! That was so much easier xD All that work for nothing
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                #7    
              Old June 19th, 2013 (12:39 PM).
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              FirEmerald FirEmerald is offline
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                Try using GIMP and GBAGE instead of TMA and APE and just about everything else except UnLZ. just get the offsets, then put those in GBAGE. then save the image, open it in GIMP, and change the format from RGB to indexed. this will automatically generate a pallet for the image that can be re-aranged. the order shown in the editor is the order that will be saved in the image, so use this to your advantage. you can also manually change the colors in the pallet. you can now edit it with only the colors from the pallet(if you try a color not in the pallet, it will automatically become the closest color in the pallet). you can then export it as any image file that GBAGE can load, and a lot more. from GBAGE, you can just navigate to the offsets again and import the image and pallet at the same time, being sure to select repoint. Then save. I feel that this is much easier, but only if you know how to use them. Another advantage is that as far as I know, there aren't any glitches in GBAGE and GIMP. not true for my experiences with both UnLZ and TMA. However, your process is probably better for people who aren't as good as figuring things out as me, because both GIMP and GBAGE are more advanced programs.
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                  #8    
                Old June 25th, 2013 (10:58 PM).
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                  Oh my freaking god! Thank you so much, I have been looking for a tutorial like this for literal ages! *Bookmarks Page for Future Reference*
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                    #9    
                  Old June 26th, 2013 (9:01 AM).
                  mitchellz14z mitchellz14z is offline
                     
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                    thanks i think it is a very detailed tutorial and i hope you make more like this
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                      #10    
                    Old July 2nd, 2013 (1:42 PM).
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                    LazerBoyEXE LazerBoyEXE is offline
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                      Mine went HORRIBLY wrong... all of the overworld is messed up... but on the bright side, the backsprite came out fine!
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                        #11    
                      Old January 27th, 2014 (4:45 PM).
                      cake_zero cake_zero is offline
                         
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                        great! ...But how do you edit the squishy sprite it uses when you're walking around?
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                          #12    
                        Old February 5th, 2014 (3:16 PM). Edited February 5th, 2014 by Line3007.
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                        Line3007 Line3007 is offline
                           
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                          Oh, you mean the overworld sprite? Use the editor "Nameless sprite editor" (NSE). It can edit a lot of the small sprites used in the game

                          Quote:
                          Originally Posted by FirEmerald View Post
                          Try using GIMP and GBAGE instead of TMA and APE and just about everything else except UnLZ. just get the offsets, then put those in GBAGE. then save the image, open it in GIMP, and change the format from RGB to indexed. this will automatically generate a pallet for the image that can be re-aranged. the order shown in the editor is the order that will be saved in the image, so use this to your advantage. you can also manually change the colors in the pallet. you can now edit it with only the colors from the pallet(if you try a color not in the pallet, it will automatically become the closest color in the pallet). you can then export it as any image file that GBAGE can load, and a lot more. from GBAGE, you can just navigate to the offsets again and import the image and pallet at the same time, being sure to select repoint. Then save. I feel that this is much easier, but only if you know how to use them. Another advantage is that as far as I know, there aren't any glitches in GBAGE and GIMP. not true for my experiences with both UnLZ and TMA. However, your process is probably better for people who aren't as good as figuring things out as me, because both GIMP and GBAGE are more advanced programs.
                          Yea, I don't know what I was thinking with that palette thing xD I know a quicker way to do it now.

                          Quote:
                          Originally Posted by UltraNerdtendo64 View Post
                          Oh my freaking god! Thank you so much, I have been looking for a tutorial like this for literal ages! *Bookmarks Page for Future Reference*
                          You're welcome! I was looking for one, too. But then I discovered this way by reading tutorials for FireRed and such xD And so I thought I would share it.

                          Quote:
                          Originally Posted by LazerBoyEXE View Post
                          Mine went HORRIBLY wrong... all of the overworld is messed up... but on the bright side, the backsprite came out fine!
                          Oh! :O Well, I hope you made a backup then I always backup when I'm about to make something 'new'.

                          Quote:
                          Originally Posted by mitchellz14z View Post
                          thanks i think it is a very detailed tutorial and i hope you make more like this
                          Thanks
                          If I discover something new, I will make a tutorial, sure
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                            #13    
                          Old March 4th, 2014 (10:40 AM).
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                          Rezeed Rezeed is offline
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                            I followed the tutorial note to note(with the exception of Photoshop since I use Photoshop 7) and the game crashed before I could do anything more.

                            Incidentally, whenever I did do the steps, the only other majors difference was that there was initially only one steven sprite on the left side and I had a already prepared sprite pasted on top of Brendon (then "Erasing" the remains of him with by pencil tool to match the color of the background.).

                            This leads to a some questions. (Sorry if it's a bother)

                            - Am I suppose to only swap out the Red Gloved Brendon with the new sprite?
                            - Is physically redrawing the sprite manditory?/Is it okay to use sprite already prepared for the occasion?
                            - Does the background need to be in a set color?
                            - Are there any particular stipulations on the steps aside from what is already mentioned on the tutorial?
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                              #14    
                            Old March 17th, 2014 (9:01 AM).
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                            Line3007 Line3007 is offline
                               
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                              Quote:
                              Originally Posted by Rezeed View Post
                              I followed the tutorial note to note(with the exception of Photoshop since I use Photoshop 7) and the game crashed before I could do anything more.

                              Incidentally, whenever I did do the steps, the only other majors difference was that there was initially only one steven sprite on the left side and I had a already prepared sprite pasted on top of Brendon (then "Erasing" the remains of him with by pencil tool to match the color of the background.).

                              This leads to a some questions. (Sorry if it's a bother)

                              - Am I suppose to only swap out the Red Gloved Brendon with the new sprite?
                              - Is physically redrawing the sprite manditory?/Is it okay to use sprite already prepared for the occasion?
                              - Does the background need to be in a set color?
                              - Are there any particular stipulations on the steps aside from what is already mentioned on the tutorial?
                              Hmm, that's some interesting and good questions! And I wish I could answer them, but I'm affraid I totally forgot this method of doing the backsprites... Now I use the NSE. That's much more easy! Download it and navigate to the offset of the backsprites and you can easily replace them.
                              Sorry, that's all I can say I did exactly what I describe in this tutorial, and it worked for me...
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                                #15    
                              Old March 19th, 2014 (6:01 PM).
                              Andrew171717 Andrew171717 is offline
                                 
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                                Thank you so much, this was the last main part of my hack that I needed.
                                There was a few things I did different than you, but without most of this info I would not have been able to succeed.
                                Thanks!
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                                  #16    
                                Old March 31st, 2014 (10:27 AM).
                                Line3007's Avatar
                                Line3007 Line3007 is offline
                                   
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                                  Quote:
                                  Originally Posted by Andrew171717 View Post
                                  Thank you so much, this was the last main part of my hack that I needed.
                                  There was a few things I did different than you, but without most of this info I would not have been able to succeed.
                                  Thanks!
                                  Aaahhh, np! I'm so glad this tutorial actually helped someone in some way xD
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                                    #17    
                                  Old April 27th, 2014 (7:13 PM).
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                                  Le pug Le pug is offline
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                                  Quote:
                                  Originally Posted by Shiny Quagsire View Post
                                  Might I suggest simply using NSE 2.X? It basically funtions exactly like TME, but it a TON easier to use. Just open it, load the ROM, go to 'Navigate,' then put D61A30 for the palette and D66C84 for the image, and 8 for the width and height.
                                  I've done this and this is the result:


                                  (i know the palette is correct, it just looks like that because I inserted the front hero sprite, just the image is off.. and also how would i go about finding the female too?)

                                  edit:
                                  Found out mine is at D66C80 for the image .. anywho, thank you for that. Wondering if you know where the female one is though. Thanks in advance~




                                  edit again:
                                  so I'm trying to figure out what's safe or not. I want to edit both of their sprites to insert my images .... would this be a bad idea at these dimensions? Trying to figure out where I'm making it complicated lol
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                                    #18    
                                  Old April 27th, 2014 (8:36 PM).
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                                  Shiny Quagsire Shiny Quagsire is offline
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                                    Quote:
                                    Originally Posted by Le pug View Post
                                    I've done this and this is the result:


                                    (i know the palette is correct, it just looks like that because I inserted the front hero sprite, just the image is off.. and also how would i go about finding the female too?)

                                    edit:
                                    Found out mine is at D66C80 for the image .. anywho, thank you for that. Wondering if you know where the female one is though. Thanks in advance~




                                    edit again:
                                    so I'm trying to figure out what's safe or not. I want to edit both of their sprites to insert my images .... would this be a bad idea at these dimensions? Trying to figure out where I'm making it complicated lol
                                    No, in fact it would actually be better to edit both that way since they both share the same palette iirc.
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