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Topics - EmperorSteele

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Completely unrelated / City of Heroes
« on: 2019-04-19 02:02:21 »
So, just wanted everyone's thoughts here on something going on in another corner of the gaming world.

The MMO "City of Heroes" was shut down by it's publisher, NCSoft (based in South Korea) several years ago, suddenly and with little notice. For ~6 years, the dwindling fanbase has been trying to get the game back in one form or another. Efforts to buy the IP failed miserably, and anyone involved forced to sign NDAs so we have no idea what really went on. Some people managed to use the local game files to set up a "chat room" using the game as an interface. No powers or bad guys or missions, but it's nice. Another team is working on their own server code, using the game assets to essentially play a "new" game. And then there's roughly 3 or 4 "teams" working on making amateur MMOs with a super hero theme (referred to as "successor" projects). So clearly, there's a lot of passion about the game.

Amidst all this difficulty and minor crumbs of content and updates, a bombshell dropped just the other day: One of the "pillars of the community", who also worked on two the aforementioned projects, actually had a fully-working server going this whole time! It was private, invite-only, and had a fight-club style rule that basically said if you discussed the server anywhere outside, you're banned. And so for years, a few hundred (to maybe a couple thousand) people manged to keep quiet that they all got to play a game that the rest of the fanbase was sorely missing. A lot of dirty laundry came to light, especially the fact that this pillar was apparently given everything needed to run the game, including everyone's character data, by... well, an inside source.

After a few days of the fanbase being REALLY angry and upset (and more than one person sending death threats unfortunately), the pillar has been slowly dumping the source code and assets to the (rest of the) community so that the more tech-savvy among us can make our own servers. It's been a roller-coaster couple of days!

I feel there's some parallels to our community here. FF7 modding has gone pretty smoothly, but only after Qhimm took great efforts to keep things clean and quiet as possible, seeing as Square was infamous for shutting down mods of its other games (Like a Chrono Cross remake, iirc). For the City of Heroes drama, that was far from the first (or last) MMO NCSoft shut down, and they were/are infamous for sending C&D notices to people making servers for their (dead) games, particularly a project called "Infinite Rasa", which was to be a server for the long-dead Tabula Rasa, which had been down for 4 years at that point. Where the parallels diverge is that, this community is semi-famous now, and I haven't heard of any attempts by Square to shut things here down, despite the publicity that the mods here receive (The FF7 page on steam? Just articles about the mods available. And heck, their latest FF7 PC releases are essentially using code developed by users here, iirc). Meanwhile, the CoH server would probably still be a secret if it hadn't been for a single whistle-blower, but we're uncertain what the future holds, as it's not a matter of WHAT NCSoft will try to do, but when and how.

There are a lot of details I haven't discussed here, because this alone is a lot to unpack. I feel like I need a semi-outside view on all this, and I figured my favorite community of gamers, programmers, and reverse engineers would be a good place to get some opinions on all that's going on =) I will, of course, fill in any details that I'm aware of if needed (some possibly by PM if a question requires a specific answer. Again, there are some legal issues involved here).

But yeah, thoughts and opinions, let's have it!

The title pretty much sums up my question.

I ask, because for all the work that's been done around here, and for all the things we're trying to do or haven't been able to do yet, perhaps there are others who've progressed in those areas and we just don't know about it?

I realize we're fairly international here, but it's hard for me to imagine that this is the -only- site working on the game. Granted, Squeenix is openly hostile towards modification, and it's a lot easier for them to shut down sites closer to home if ever there were any... but still. Has there been any effort to find other such communities and sites, perhaps to spread the workload a bit? Or are we truly alone in this endeavor?

General discussion / FF7-Universe news
« on: 2009-11-18 01:18:35 »
Hey guys 'n' gals!

I was a semi-regular way back when. I see a couple familiar faces, and a lot of new ones. Good to see FF7-modding is still alive and well =)

Anyway, as the webmaster of ff7-universe(.com), which kinda-sorta used to be a depository for mods and faqs and has been linked around here a few times, I feel obligated to tell anyone who's interested that the site will be closing its virtual doors soon. I haven't touched it in almost two years, have no plans to do so, and will be canceling future payment to my webhost.

I say this for one main reason: if there's anything off of there that anyone still needs (like 0.6 of the NPC restoration project, the high-res patch, or any other patches/mods/FaQs i have on there) they should grab them and/or change any links NOW. The site will continue to be up until sometime in December or January, but I wanted to give a heads up.

As a related aside, if anyone wants ownership of the URL before that too, expires, and knows how we could transfer it, let me know.

Either that or convince me to keep it open, w/e. At this point, I only care because I don't want people linking to it, then have some porn site grab the URL and suddenly someone looking for game info gets a face full of squick. I'd feel bad.

SO i did a marathon gaming session for HL2: Episode 2 and Portal.

Wow, Portal is GREAT.  Short, but oh so very sweet.  The Orange Box game package is worth it for this game alone; very original, and refreshing.  Episode 2 and Team Fortress 2 are also pretty spiffy.

Anyone else play it yet?

I decided to make a separate thread for this instead of stuffing the high-res patch thread with more nonsense, but...

Anyway, as I'm sure everyone is aware, AVG anti-virus, and now other anti-virus programs, have been identifying the HRP (both the .rar file and the patcher itself) as being infected with a generic trojan.  Presumably, this is because it's a program to change a program.  People are wondering if their systems are in danger, and i get e-mails and see messages on boards almost every day from people worrying that their systems just got h4xx0red.  I can think of 2 solutions:

1: fix the program so it appears as a legitimate patching tool that is is instead of a malicious over-writing utility... I have dozens of game patches stored on my system, and not once has any of them been confused for a virus.

2: Simply distribute the patched versions of ff7 and ff7config, ala the 1.02 patch.  Would this work, or does the patcher patch other files, too?

Troubleshooting / So, uh, Vista?
« on: 2007-02-08 19:27:38 »
Sorry, havn't been around for a while, but anyway...

I got an e-mail from someone asking if ff7 needs to be patched for Vista.  I wasn't sure how to answer him, sooo....  Does 1.02 work?  Does one need the chocobo patch? (I'm thinking not for some reason)  Will we need new and different patches for Vista?

I'm personally not planning on upgrading, but i'm sure some of you by now have acquired it, so... uhm, thoughts?

Completely unrelated / Advent Children
« on: 2006-04-26 05:24:26 »
Well, english version is out.  How'd everyone like it?

For me, the english ranged from pretty good (Denzel, Reno, and Vincent) to really odd (Cid, Cait) to gawd awful (Aeris and CLOUD, dammit, the main character, why oh WHY?!).

I kinda like the english script overall better, too; it makes more sense now than some rushed fansub.

Archive / ssslllooowww fmvs =(
« on: 2005-11-08 19:59:40 »
Okay folks, here's the situation.

On my rig, the fmvs play horribly slow, and the sound mis-synchs (So the sound goes at normal speed, while the video lags behind).  This is evident on all the longer videos, and is horribly annoying.  Specs are as below:

amd 2000+ (1.6 gigs)
1 gig ram
geforce 6600gt driver version 77.77
onboard nforce 2 sound
2 HDs (20/80 gigis)
a dvd rewritable +/- drive
winxp pro sp 2
dual monitors

While i AM using the saint's high res patch, not using it has not aleviated this problem.  I have also tried different versions of the duck codec, with no results.

I have tried turning down/off hardware acceleration for sound; still nothing.

I am curently running the movies off my primary HD, and have tried running them off BOTH HDs AND the dvd drive.  The results are the same.

I've tried disabling one of my monitors while playing ff7; nothing.

The movies play perfect in winamp and WMP.  It's just that, in-game, the video lags.  About the only thing i havn't done is reverted to a clean 1.00 version and tried running it in software mode /=.

I have come to conclude there is some kind of video resource conflict with XP pro sp 2 that occures only when playing ff7; i cannot revert to an "earlier" version of windows, as an sp2 disk is the only one i have =(  Does the code for the game need to be updated, or am I misisng something horribly obvious?  Does anyone have any further suggestions?

Archive / "Load" menu option possible?
« on: 2005-10-19 10:00:57 »
Among many of ff7's technical flaws, there's one insofar that the modding community has not yet addressed, which i would like to point out, and hopefully, someone can do something about it.

As per the title of this thread, I would like a "load" option in the menu.  Is it too much to ask that i shouldnt have to shut off and restart the game just to access a different save file?  Or has every other PC game ever made spoiled me? =P

Seriously, is this possible?  Is there an integral part of the engine which makes loading while the game is in progress impossible?  Had I the technical know-how, i'd attempt this myself.  Sadly, in the time it would take me to learn how to do this, ff7 will have been remade and ported =P

General discussion / AC trailer music?
« on: 2005-07-28 07:40:03 »
Okay, you guys have all seen the 4th trailer, right?  And there's the rock -n- Roll version of OWA playing?  Has anyone been able to extract or re-create this without the voices and other sound effects?

If not, can anyone here do that?  One-Winged Rock, uhm, rocks =)  I'd like it on my playlist without the whole actual movie playing =/

Archive / Wow, having ff7 problemns... but in Win98 o_O?!
« on: 2005-06-18 00:29:45 »
Okay, i built myself a low-end rig to run win98, and this way play older games without problems (like ff7).  I've gotten AA sorta working on a geforce 4 mx440, but i get those damned gridlines, no matter what i do or what drivers i download.  The card's not even mine (anymore), so i can't spend too much effort getting that particulair card working.  The default card is some geforce2 mx200.  I swapped cards to see what the problem was, but the 440 doesn't work much better than the 200.

Rivatuner says it doesnt support ANY of the drivers i'm Dling either, whether they be 5x.xx, 6x.xx, whatever.

Fun fact: Under winxp, the very same card worked perfetly, didn't even need rivatuner >=.

I'd rather not install winxp on this rig (I'll do a dual-boot as a last effin resort).  Suggestions?

For the reccord, my main rig with a geforce 6600gt hates ff7 with a passion, so i can't go back to using that =(

General discussion / New AC Trailer!!
« on: 2005-05-17 01:16:29 »

Yes, if that won't work, go to gamespots front page and navigate from there =)

Archive / Regaurding gridlines...
« on: 2005-03-15 05:31:21 »
Hey, i just had an idea...

FF7 gets gridlines when using AA probably because the background files are in a wierd, compressed file format.  So, what if we just changed 'em to a more stable or usable file format?

I tried at least uncompressing the data and putting it back, but this resulted in crashes =(

Anyone with more familiarity with ff7s file structure have any ideas?

Archive / The FF7 systems database!
« on: 2005-01-24 08:36:25 »
Hey all.  I have a plan that may once and for all be able to help those who cannot run the game correctly, for whatever reason.

Starting with my own systems, I plan to make a spreadsheet of various systems, and how well they run ff7, including if they need any patches or not.

Now, this is where i need help.  I want all of YOU to list your system specs for me as follows:

OS (if XP, please specify home/pro, and which service packs, if any, are installed)

Video card
-driver version (If anyone is willing to test multiple driver versions on your system, i'd love you for it!)
Audio card
-space total and free
CD/DVD drives
-read speed

Basic system info: Does it usually run fine, or do you have other problems?  No need to be too specific unless it's something that could very well hamper ff7's performance (like conflicting codec, or high system memory usage due to overabundance of running proggies/spyware)

Version of FF7 (and if you've applied either the chococbo or animevamp patch)
-full install w/ movies on HD?
-Ultima version?
-did you install the yamaha drivers?
-Did you install directshow or the truemotion codec?
-Any other patches or mods installed? (Such as numpad fix for laptops or the high-res battle Cloud patch)

What res do you run ff7 at?
-problems with other res's?
-hardware or software mode?

Movies: Do they play? (yes/no/some)
-any specific problems?

Crashes: Where/when/frequency (if at all)

Other bugs? (Superspeed Bike, white boxes when Odin uses steel-bladed Sword, crappy-looking text, doesnt shut off w/out a ctrlatldel, etc)

Basically, i want to to see if we can draw a definitive coralary between specific issues between ff7 and the rest of one's system.  With the kind of AOL-using goofballs who cant get movies to play, i wouldnt be surprised if the cause of this rash of "can't get movies to play" is somehow related to shitty Dells or somekind of wierd spyware.

I mean, i've only had one problem getting movies to play, on a very, very old system.  I circumvented it by playing the movies in windows media player before reaching them in-game, so that they were in memory.  And truth be told, I'm a moron, but i still got it to work.  3 systems later, i still have a flawless-working copy (give or take the chocobo patch and the once-in-a-great-while random crash).  I refuse to beleive that anyone with a legit copy can't get te thing to run correctly (at least as far as movies and other minor nuances are concerned).

At worst, we'll beable to nail down the cause to such movie problems soley on the copy being pirated, and/or the end-user having done something stupid.  At best, You will have helped me create the penultimatge trouble-shooting guide, so the next time someone says "I have a p3 sytem and a radeon card, and ff7 refuses to boot", we'll beable to inform them of a hardware conflict and to update thier mobo's drivers.

Btw, i only put this in game-tweaking because this is where the majority of our "problem" users seem to lurk.. i'm really more interested in getting their info.  If a Mod feels this REALLY belongs elsewhere (like tech, mebbe?), well, i can't stop ya from moving it =/

General discussion / Supernova equation?
« on: 2005-01-20 22:51:19 »
Yeah, someone posted about this on another board, and now its messin me up.  What's the Equation that flashes on the screen durring Sephy's Supernova supposed to be?  Random gibberish, or is it an actualy theorum?

Archive / Hand patch problems...
« on: 2004-11-21 04:54:36 »
"MP" Cloud's hands are backwards or on teh wrong arms.  Any clue how I can fix this?  I tried PMing the guy who made it, but, he hasn't responded.

So anyway, how do i "turn around" hands?

Okay, for some reason, it seems like common knowledge that one can aquire a ribbon at this point in disk 2.  However, no guide i refered to has any info on this, and a 2+ hour playthru of the whole area has turned up no results.

This bugs me, because I'd liek to think i know just as much about gameplay as anyone else, yet i seem to be the only person to have never found a ribbon in the snowy/cliff area.  And yet, at the same time, no one else has been able to tell me where they supposidly got thier extra ribbon (I'm thinking they actually didn't get it, and this is just a widely spread rumor)

Now, if i have to morph something, then that's one thing i've not considered trying... damn me and my low-level characters...

Archive / ff7Music not repeating
« on: 2004-10-07 08:38:55 »

I've done a rather intensive search on this, and came up with nothing.  Has anyone else had this problem and been able to fix it?

The proggy works fine, just, the MP3s don't repeat.

Yes, the "loop" box is checked =P

I'm using ff7music v 1.10 w/  ficedula.dll v 1.10

help?  The longer battles are fought in silence, and it's lame ;_;

General discussion / More save files?
« on: 2004-09-29 04:33:03 »
Is there any way to have more than 10 save files accessable from the "save/load" menu?  I wanted to know if anyone's tried before, so i don't go mucking up my game for nothing.

edit: crap, wrong forum, can someone move this to game tweaking?  thanks...

Trying to disprove this ludicrous claim in another forum, i aimed to give an enemy exactly 7777 hp.

I went up against Materia keeper (8400 hp), and aimed to do EXACTLY 623 damage to it (8400 - 623 = 7777)  So using Jenova, i gave myself exactly 6230 gil and a mastered THROW materia (for the COIN ability).

Turns out i was wrong >_<

(posted as a link cuz i was too lazy to size it down, and its 56k rape and i didnt wanna muck up the forums.. sized it down a bit, tho)

I figgured this goes under tech related in case this helps solve any mysteries concerning status aflictions among well as raise the question of is this an intentional part of the game, or is it a fluke?  However, if this doesnt belong here, then I wholeheartidly appologize =/

I DID read the faq.. i was kinda weary about psoting it here, but for some reason, i didnt think "game tweaking" or "General" were any more appropriate =/

Archive / 3-d field info? (where to find/how to edit)
« on: 2004-08-26 05:13:42 »
Like the title implies, is ther currently a way to edit the background information?  I know it would seem stupid to do so, as one would need to have a bg image, and ff7 will likely not accept any more such things into its data files... but lets juts say for the sake of argument that that wasn't a problem.  Can i just rip the field info and edit it in a 3-d proggy, or would i need whatever they used to make ff7 (and therfor be SOL)?

Announcements and site development / New sub-forum?
« on: 2004-08-24 23:30:27 »
Well, i'm sure others have noticed, but we get people in here asking for help with running ff7pc and the variosu mods and patches and other debauchery, but they post everywhere!  General, tech related, programing, game tweaking...

Now, problems with mods, ok, that's game tweaking.  Problems with programs, prog feedback.  That's fine.  But we really need a place to direct the quasi-infinite amount of "ff7 crashes" (which arent due to mods or proggies) and other misc technical problem threads.

The thing is, it's just a bit wierd to see threads all dealing with the same thing, but spread into 3 different forums.

General discussion / ff7: ac + Matrix = ???
« on: 2004-08-24 08:03:11 »

I got bored, and semi-inspired, so i whipped this up.  I thought some of ya would get a kick out of it ^_^

Btw, is this ok here, or should it be in "Completly unreleated"?

Scripting and Reverse Engineering / Ying/Yang is happy/sad
« on: 2004-08-04 22:26:23 »
Uhm, just a quick Q, because i have not the means to find out myself...

The YingYang creature in the Nibelheim mansion there an effect when the game declares "Ying is happy" or "yang is sad"?  I've also seen the word "Ecstatic" used" on ying, but, mweh.

Does it increase attack/toughness or anything?  If no one knows off-hand, is there a way i can find out using available tools (like on fice's or alexx's site?)

Archive / Rivatuner...
« on: 2004-07-31 02:45:29 »
Okay, maybe wrong forum, but...

okay, you know the rivatuner tweak?  Well, ff7 only works with the 2 x 2 mode for fsaa.  I wondered if 4 x 4 would work, but there's no "mode" labled that.  So if I went into the config file and added

FSAAMode10=4 x 4

in the right spot, would this allow for such a thing, or is it physically impossible?  Would i risk damaging anything if i tried?

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