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Danny0317

Fluorite's back, brah

Age 19
Male
Seen May 6th, 2019
Posted March 11th, 2017
1,070 posts
6.4 Years
Oh you just started ROM hacking and don't know what to do, or where to start off? Well, I was in the same boat one year ago. Had a great idea for a hack, but didn't know how to hack. Well, since there's a lot of noobies here in PC wanting to learn to hack, I wrote this little document for you guys..


Okay, so first off, you need to download a ROM. I can't link you to one because it's against the rules, but google is your friend. Choose the ROM you want to hack, I say you should go for Fire Red.
I used to be a sapphire hacker, and that didn't go well. The two ROMs that you DON'T wanna hack are Leaf Green and Sapphire.
There's less ASM routines for them, and have less support from tools.
The reason I hack Fire Red is because of this that my friend sent me last year:


"Well, I don't mean to be a bug on your shoulder, but you see what FR is capable of?:
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=302476
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=293704
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=267584
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=298934
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=240183
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=257647
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=301711
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=206197
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=304077
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=291023
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=246740
And the best of them all:
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=194241

I used to be a Ruby hacker, but I then I realized that even though RSE were good games, on the inside they aren't. You know?
I've never even played FR (nor will I) but still. You can change FR into Ruby by appearance if you wanted (and very easily).
So RSE aren't as great as they seem. I don't want you to change, but think about it. Plus, not everyone carries Sapphire ROMs. I've seen before that people are attracted to the hack, just that it's Sapphire or Leaf Green, and they don't play it for that reason alone."
-gogojjtech



Also keep in mind that was before they expanded the Pokedex, and allowed more mons to be added, but that can be done in emerald too. After you decide the ROM that you're gonna use (Please use Emerald or Fire Red, and if you don't wanna use those for any stupid reason, then at least Ruby) you're ready to download some tools :)

Also, someone wrote this, this might help you decide as well:
However, someone wrote this, this can help you decide:
I'd like to add that Ruby is also a very poor base ROM to start on. The engine is such a mess that it's just not worth it.

Emerald should be your base ROM of choice if you want to keep any of the RSE exclusive features, like contests, the Battle Frontier, Secret Bases, and the like.

In fact, I'd go so far as to recommend Emerald to new hackers over Firered. The main reasons Emerald hacking has been held back are rumors of its instability (which are false) and tools historically not supporting it. In today's hacking environment, those are non-issues. Now, as research focus begins to shift to Emerald, I believe it will eclipse Firered in usage. Might as well jump on the bandwagon now!
Alright, so let's start with the most important tools. Those two are Advanced Map (which will soon be replaced my MEH) and XSE (Extreme Script Editor). With XSE you can make a script, which can do many things, like the most basic of scripts: a talking script, or a complex script full of trainer battles and movements, and more. The other tool is Advanced Map. That tool is used for mapping (which is, if it wasn't obvious enough, making maps), adding people, giving scripts to people, giving scripts to signposts, putting Pokemon in the wild, and much much more.
Here are the best scripting tutorials in my opinion:


http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=279345

There's some mapping, and other types of tutorials HERE you can click that and find them there :)

*also, I don't expect you to learn scripting in a day, it's gonna take like a week, but trust me it's worth it. A hack needs new scripts to be a good hack.

Once you have those tools, you can get other tools that would be helpful.
Here's a list of some tools, and for some, a download link.
  • Advanced Series - Edits Pokemon sprites, icons, and battle positions. It is a must have if you are inserting new sprites. Link here
  • FSF (Free space finder) - Finds free space in your rom. Link here
  • G3T (Gen 3 Tools) - A pretty new, but awesome set of tools. It has a moves editor, trainer editor, pokemon editor, item editor, and more, all in one. Link here
  • PGE (Pokemon Game Editor) - A really really useful tool, edit's pokemon base stats, has a move edtior, and more, but sadly the download link got taken down. You'll have to find it on your own, but it's not that hard to find :)
  • Item manager - Helps you do stuff when editing, or adding new items. Link here
  • Jambo51's tools. One of the is a battle script editor, which is very useful for different things related to battling, and a trainer editor. Link here
  • NSE - can edit ANY graphic in the game. There's two versions, link and link. It's good to have both.
  • Gen 3 Hacking Suite - This tool is the bomb diggity 101 amazing 10/10. With this tool you can edit Pokemon's base stats, movesets, pokedex data, and even expand the amount of pokemon in the game. It is found here

There's a lot more tools, but those are just some important ones you're gonna need. After all this is an introduction to hacking.

If there's something you don't know how to do, just ask people to HELP you, not to do it for you, or just make a thread in the begginer's lounge or look in the tutorials or something.

Also here's some resources that can help you out:
  • DS styled 64x64 Pokemon sprites
    Now you may be wondering why 64x64, and that's because that's the GBA's sprite size limit, and some people were nice enough to resize a BUNCH of sprites from generation 1-5!
  • MrDollSteak's rom base
    This rom base has new moves, the fairy type (which you can choose to take off), P/S split, P/S split icons, decapitalization and much much more! It is for Fire Red only.
  • There's a bunch more in Pokecommunity's resources section ;)

Now that's about it, now go explore around the internet and make your rom hack :)
However, if there is no one thing that I absolutely must say it is that the best way to learn ROM hacking is through experience..

This is some important stuff too
May I also add that it really doesn't matter what ROM base you use, any kind of ROM you use for creating your own hack pretty much has the same difficulty as any other ROM. The only difference? Game Boy and Game Boy Color ROMs take the least amount of time, Game Boy Advance ROMs take a moderate amount of time, and finally Nintendo DS ROMs take the longest, due to their 3D models in the game (if they have any, that is).

Some people may think that the newer ones are more harder just because they take longer, right? Not exactly, it's just about the same difficulty as any other ordinary ROM. ;)

Whatever ROM you feel like hacking is entirely up to your own decision. Just because someone says it's too hard doesn't mean you shouldn't give up on the ROM you really want to hack and change to some other ROM, 'cause that's not really a good way to start. Otherwise it can lead to you having to try and adapt to a different way the ROM is coded and it requires learning more about that ROM and stuff like that. What I recommend is to stay with that ROM base and follow your dreams about developing a ROM Hack of that game, don't let anyone else's opinion let you down on it. ^^

For anyone who is wishing to hack the Nintendo DS ROMs, such as Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, Heart Gold, Soul Silver, Black, White, Black 2 and White 2, there are some very good tutorials out there in which will definitely come in handy. Don't worry about what other people say about 'how difficult the ROMs are', instead... try to focus on what you feel like doing and follow your dreams of creating your ROM Hack. It can take more time than earlier ROMs, so it's pretty much slow and steady wins the race, right? Take your time, no need to rush. There are plenty of tutorials to show you on Nintendo DS ROM Hacking, and yes this includes editing models too. And I'm giving so much credit to all those people out there that made those tutorials (including myself). Thank you so much for all these tutorials! ^^

Modeling/Map Editing


Scripting


Hex Editing


Hex Editing

Danny0317

Fluorite's back, brah

Age 19
Male
Seen May 6th, 2019
Posted March 11th, 2017
1,070 posts
6.4 Years
Ummm...grate resource for beginners but yah the pokemon game editor...couldn't find a link anywhere...even googled it but no results...

Good for beginners though...
I can't help you out there, sorry, I'm not allowed to put that link up. :(
Male
Seen January 2nd, 2015
Posted January 2nd, 2015
258 posts
7.5 Years
Nice tutorial Dark Sneasel! I'm sure it will help beginners well!
░░░░░███████ ]▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▄
▂▄▅█████████▅▄▃▂
Il███████████████████].
◥⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙◤..

If you're looking for a good time, or just want to chat, come over to Weloxux and I's channel at:
http://mibbit.com/?server=irc.mibbit.net&channel=%23Dragons_Den

Deokishisu

Mr. Magius

Male
If I'm online, it's a safe bet I'm at a computer.
Seen January 9th, 2019
Posted March 4th, 2018
859 posts
13.7 Years
I'd like to add that Ruby is also a very poor base ROM to start on. The engine is such a mess that it's just not worth it.

Emerald should be your base ROM of choice if you want to keep any of the RSE exclusive features, like contests, the Battle Frontier, Secret Bases, and the like.

In fact, I'd go so far as to recommend Emerald to new hackers over Firered. The main reasons Emerald hacking has been held back are rumors of its instability (which are false) and tools historically not supporting it. In today's hacking environment, those are non-issues. Now, as research focus begins to shift to Emerald, I believe it will eclipse Firered in usage. Might as well jump on the bandwagon now!
For ROMHackers, PokeCommunity is dead after the scandal. If you enjoy the ROMHacking scene, come with the rest of us to Silph Co. It is a forum by ROMHackers, for ROMHackers. None of the bloat of PC, and staff that knows what our subset of the community needs.

Platinum Lucario

The Legendary Master of Light!

Age 26
Male
Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia.
Seen 19 Hours Ago
Posted 19 Hours Ago
1,596 posts
11.8 Years
May I also add that it really doesn't matter what ROM base you use, any kind of ROM you use for creating your own hack pretty much has the same difficulty as any other ROM. The only difference? Game Boy and Game Boy Color ROMs take the least amount of time, Game Boy Advance ROMs take a moderate amount of time, and finally Nintendo DS ROMs take the longest, due to their 3D models in the game (if they have any, that is).

Some people may think that the newer ones are more harder just because they take longer, right? Not exactly, it's just about the same difficulty as any other ordinary ROM. ;)

Whatever ROM you feel like hacking is entirely up to your own decision. Just because someone says it's too hard doesn't mean you shouldn't give up on the ROM you really want to hack and change to some other ROM, 'cause that's not really a good way to start. Otherwise it can lead to you having to try and adapt to a different way the ROM is coded and it requires learning more about that ROM and stuff like that. What I recommend is to stay with that ROM base and follow your dreams about developing a ROM Hack of that game, don't let anyone else's opinion let you down on it. ^^

For anyone who is wishing to hack the Nintendo DS ROMs, such as Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, Heart Gold, Soul Silver, Black, White, Black 2 and White 2, there are some very good tutorials out there in which will definitely come in handy. Don't worry about what other people say about 'how difficult the ROMs are', instead... try to focus on what you feel like doing and follow your dreams of creating your ROM Hack. It can take more time than earlier ROMs, so it's pretty much slow and steady wins the race, right? Take your time, no need to rush. There are plenty of tutorials to show you on Nintendo DS ROM Hacking, and yes this includes editing models too. And I'm giving so much credit to all those people out there that made those tutorials (including myself). Thank you so much for all these tutorials! ^^

Modeling/Map Editing


Scripting


Hex Editing


Hex Editing

[Platinum Lucario's Signature]
If you need to disable my signature, please give me advice on how to improve the CSS-DIV code. Thank you!
All credits for the avatar since 2008 goes to shorty-antics-27 (fanart account)! Thank you! ^^
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It's time to change the future...
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Danny0317

Fluorite's back, brah

Age 19
Male
Seen May 6th, 2019
Posted March 11th, 2017
1,070 posts
6.4 Years
Great job. Very beginner friendly.

What's wrong with hacking LeafGreen though?
Less ASM routines, less support from tools, less documentation.

Deokishisu

Mr. Magius

Male
If I'm online, it's a safe bet I'm at a computer.
Seen January 9th, 2019
Posted March 4th, 2018
859 posts
13.7 Years
Ohh I see. I'm quite embarrassed to not have known that. I've never tried hacking LG before.
Don't hack LG.

The reason no one hacks Sapphire and Leafgreen is because there's no point. Firered is exactly the same as Leafgreen functionality-wise. When Game Freak compiled both games, they basically scrambled where things are located between the two, and then redid LG's titlescreen and encounter tables. That is to say, the games are essentially the same, but the same table/map/music/etc. in both games are located in different areas. Firered was researched, while Leafgreen wasn't. Therefore, we know exponentially more about where things are in Firered than in Leafgreen. There won't be a reason to choose to hack Leafgreen over Firered in the near future (and I doubt ever, really).

It is the same deal when comparing Ruby and Sapphire, except they changed a little more for the story differences between the two. But, if you're hacking and want RSE exclusive features, don't hack Ruby or Sapphire, go straight for Emerald. I outlined the main reason why a few posts up, but Emerald is preferable for a plethora of other reasons as well. I'll quote my earlier post at the end of this one.

Either way, good luck! Whichever you choose, Emerald or Firered, definitely do your best and ask questions in the main ROMHacking section. Don't be embarrassed or scared of learning!

The post:
I'd like to add that Ruby is also a very poor base ROM to start on. The engine is such a mess that it's just not worth it.

Emerald should be your base ROM of choice if you want to keep any of the RSE exclusive features, like contests, the Battle Frontier, Secret Bases, and the like.

In fact, I'd go so far as to recommend Emerald to new hackers over Firered. The main reasons Emerald hacking has been held back are rumors of its instability (which are false) and tools historically not supporting it. In today's hacking environment, those are non-issues. Now, as research focus begins to shift to Emerald, I believe it will eclipse Firered in usage. Might as well jump on the bandwagon now!

Percy

Male
Asia
Seen 7 Hours Ago
Posted 3 Days Ago
2,969 posts
5.1 Years
I was just searching the threads Dark Sneasel made (sorry, I'm a stalker :P), and I found this: http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=326609
I think that I can make one like that, too, so, here, let me start rolling.

I'm sure that you already have downloaded an English Emerald ROM, right? If so, proceed.
If not, well, search Google, and by the way, do not ask for a ROM here. It is strictly prohibited.

Basically, Emerald is a very excellent ROM Base to use. Some people say Emerald is unstable, but, I have a different opinion: meh. Anyway, some people I know said that Emerald's so-called title "unstable" is not true. Okay, back to the features. Emerald has many features, the Pokemon Contests to name one.

To start, many hacks, that I'm sure, you have already played, is made of Emerald, like:
Pokemon Glazed
Pokemon CrystalDust
Pokemon Fluorite (Best Emerald hack that I've played, along with Glazed and the hacks 1158 made.)
The three hacks 1158 made:
Pokemon Victory Fire
Pokemon Resolute Version
Pokemon Mega Power
(Sure they have grammatical errors, but they're still enjoyable)

And, the famous Pokemon Flora Sky
Pokemon Blackened Night
Pokemon Discovery (no beta, but its still awesome)

See? They used Emerald, and they did not died of insanity xD

Anyway, here's some good tutorials and such for Emerald:
Emerald ROMBase by mamamama
This is one heck of a resource. Helped me a lot, even though I had an issue (but its fixed now).
Adding New Types into Emerald by MrDollsteak
Not easy to do, I tell you!! But I managed to do it :D Yay to me, I guess? If you wanna add Fairy types in Emerald, this is the tutorial for you.
[Emerald]Expanding the Pokedex by Chaos Rush
This is incredible, right? Not easy to do, too. I didn't actually managed to do it, but what if you can do it?
Emerald Decap. Patch by Le Pug
This is a very nice resource, too. It decapitalize almost everything in your Emerald ROM.
Change OW in script by Dark Sneasel
Scroll down to the bottom part to see the Emerald part. Very easy to do, too. You just need some scripting knowledge.
Controllable Boats in Gen. 3 games by Dark Sneasel
A script Dark Sneasel made. Its actually very impressive if you actually try it in-game. A bit slow, but fine. :D

There are many things in the Quick Research & Development for Emerald, such as:
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?p=7993745#7993745
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?p=8444249#8444249[PART2][PART 3]
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?p=8444386#8444386
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?p=8384600#8384600[PART 2]

There's some good 'uns in the Research & Development forum, too. Such as:
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=321951
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=324207
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=207026
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=308411

And, THIS:
http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=336430

Platinum Lucario

The Legendary Master of Light!

Age 26
Male
Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia.
Seen 19 Hours Ago
Posted 19 Hours Ago
1,596 posts
11.8 Years
I should also mention that while hacking LeafGreen of the 3rd gen games has less documentation, same thing applies for FireRed and LeafGreen that are non-English versions and the ones that are higher revisions too. While this has plagued the English 3rd Gen ROM Hacking community, this hasn't actually been a problem for the ROM Hacking community on 5ch (previously 2ch). This is because we don't have a ROM chart (aka ROM Map) of the locations of data such as scripts, sprites, moves, maps and other stuff that would otherwise tell people where the pointers and the binary data is located. Once we do, that will help in regards to binary hacking.

To counter this problem in binary hacking, what will be needed, is a ROM chart, and someone to compare the similar code and ROM chart for the different languages and the different ROM revisions. Just to think, FireRed/LeafGreen v1.1 or higher is actually more stable to use than FireRed/LeafGreen v1.0. Something to think about in the meantime before the decompilation of Pokefirered is complete.

Anyways, pretty outdated information, I'm sure it will be updated as new information is posted here.

Hey, Thanks so much for posting this info. You gave me the confidence to move forward with my project. any hints for a beginner who has the rom and tools but is still a tech eggplant?
There's actually a lot of newer tools nowadays than there was back in 2014 that will help assist with all of that, to help distinguish the tools threads from the tutorials and resources threads, all you need to do is click on the prefix that says "Tool", and that will help you be able to find the newer tools on the forum. Hope this information helps! Best of luck to you!
[Platinum Lucario's Signature]
If you need to disable my signature, please give me advice on how to improve the CSS-DIV code. Thank you!
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It's time to change the future...
to a positive direction!
Let's prevent things from getting bad!

I'm a ROM and ISO Researcher

Current Project: Researching Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Adventure Squad games (WiiWare)
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