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Tutorial - 'Rom Hacking' by Pengwinn

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Blurb

A tutorial about how to 'hack' SNES roms using ZSNES emulator, more specifically, changing the game values.

Body

1.0 - Introduction
Hi there kids! This is a tutorial on what else, Rom Hacking. What kind of Rom Hacking? Changing game values! Ever wanted to be a few levels higher for that big boss, without all the work? Well now you can!.. or at least when you finish reading this tutorial and you have these things listed below.

1.1 - What do I need?
#1 - ZSNES Emulator, Latest version.
#2 - Any Rom. (RPG Preferrably.)

1.2 - Let's get started!
Lets.

2.0a - Levelin' up!
Ok, quite possibly the most boring thing in all RPG Games. Sometimes its fun, other times you just want to get it done. Or, you have already beat the game fairly, so, beat it unfairly! I'm gonna show you how it's done.

First off, open your rom in ZSNES. Now you have control of your little hero guy, right? If so, good. Walk him around a bit, just for kicks, and then stop, and go into the "Status" menu, where you find the amount of EXP He has. Let's just say he has, 425 EXP. Ok, 425 EXP. That's nice and tidy. Hit "ESC" to open up the ZSNES Menu bar, go to the "CHEAT" option, select "SEARCH". Now, most RPG Games use a 3-byte experience range, but some use only 2-byte. It doesn't matter which you choose, as long as the value you are searching for/replacing with fits inside the range. Choose either two or three byte for this. Do "DEC" not "HEX", and "Exact Value Search". Hit "START". Whee, we are on our way to our first Rom Hack! Enter the value that you are searching for, 425, and press Search. At first, your should come up with many values. Just close down the window by pressing "ESC" and get back to the game. Go fight a monster (to get more exp) and check the status screen again, now we have 427 exp! Go back to the "CHEAT" menu, select "SEARCH" and you'll be at the value-searching screen, search for 427. Now the values found will be close to 1 or 2, you are narrowing the search! If the values found is still 6-7 or higher, best to get a little more exp and repeat the search, and that will narrow it even further. Once you have either 1 or 2 values found, "VIEW" them. Select one of them (if there is only one, select that one.) Press "ADD" and now is the fun part. Changing your exp to be ANY NUMBER. You could boost it a little, or give him 10,000 exp! Enter a description for it something like "LEVEL UP", don't check the "UPPER BYTE" box and press "ADD". You are now in the browse window, remember that. "ESC" back to the game, and look at your character's experience points! Changed to what you wanted, eh? But he still hasn't leveled up! So, go do a fight with a random monster. After the fight is through, your hero will level up as many times as the exp you gave him will allow him too level up. (Sometimes your character will level up by closing the window and reoppening it, different games varie) Now, if you were to continue fighting, you'll notice that your exp never changes. It's becaused your exp is fused to whatever you entered, say, 10,000. But, if you go to the "BROWSE" window and "REMOVE" them, you lose all your exp and ruin your game, because you won't be able to level up for a LOOOOONG time. So, the fine-and-dandy solution to this is to go to the "GAME" Button on the ZSNES menu bar, select "SAVE STATE" select "YES" and then remove your cheats from the "CHEAT->BROWSE" window. Now, reset the game, and load your previous state. BLAM, Level ## with 10,000 exp, ready to play!

Congratulations, you just did your first rom hack!

2.0b - MONEY! STATS! ANYTHING WITH A NUMBER I WANT HIGHER!
Rom Hacking by value changing is easy, and fun. You want more money? Say you have 25 gold, search for 25. Lots of values found. Go back to the game, sell one of your equipments to get 35 gold. Search for 35. Now the values found will be lower. If needed, search again, untill you have 1-2 values found. Change this value to "99999" and look at the result, 99999 gold! Save state, remove the cheats, reset the system, rinse and repeat for anything with a number that you want to be higher! Bonus points for a mini-game, ammo for your gun, your health, your magic points, ANYTHING with a number can be changed this way! I hope you have fun doing it.

Congratulations, and Remember to make a back-up save state in case your screw up your game somehow. :)

3.0 - 10 E-Z STEPS
1:Find a value.
2:Search for that value.
3:If search turns up a high result, change your value somehow, and search for the new value.
4:This search will narrow your results. If needed, do it again to further narrow your results.
5:Once one to two values are found, (One is best.) change these values to your desired value (Money goes from 100, to 10,000!)
6:Save your state.
7:Remove the cheats.
8:Reset the system.
9:Load your state.
10:Voila! Whatever you wanted changed, is changed.

4.0 - Closing
Well I hope this tutorial was good enough for you, and I have no comments on if there could be a PART 2 (COUGH COUGH, WINK WINK) on doing different things, such as event flags and items. (COUGH, WINK)

If you have any questions, e-mail me at Pengwinn6@AOL.com, or AIM, Pengwinn6.

Have fun Rom-Haxoring!

May your quest be A WHOLE LOT EASIER.

-Pengwinn