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JMareel

Where/What File is In-Game Text Located?!

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I just bought a game over ebay but unfortunately it is in spanish. Does anybody know where all text that appears in-game is usually located? in what type of file? I am trying to locate the file or files where the text that I read while playing the game is located so maybe I can run it throught a translator and at least make it somewhat readable. It is not instructions I am worried about. The text that I have to read from the monitor while I am actually playing the game is in spanish. I am pretty computer savy so I was hoping to locate the file or files that contain any and all text that is shown while playing the game and try to run that text through a translator program then copy it back and save it so that when the text prints in the game it is mostly in english. So do you know which game files I should open and look at to find the actual text that is in-game? If not, do you know how I can find out where game text is usually kept in the directory tree of games? -JMareel

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There's no standard place to keep any game file. You may find a file floating around somewhere that contains all the strings if you're lucky. It might be in a larger packaged file containing other game data. Or if you are unlucky, the game might have been poorly made with all the text hard coded into the exe. I would try doing a text search in all the game files for a string used in the game -- you might get lucky and find it.

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How do I do a text search of a string used in the game? I thought about doing that and I wrote down a string used in the game. But how do I search INSIDE files for text strings? Do I need a different type of program?

-JMareel

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Chances are it isnt going to work, but what you are going to need is a hex editor. Not debug in dos, but a decent windows/linux based hex editing monster. You are going to need to (as others pointed out) do a search for a known string in each and every file, till you find it. And then you must also understand the issue with charactor sets. You may need to search the file with a slightly more binary concept as string can (and often are) encrypted to take up only 4 bits instead of 8, meaning you must have search capable of reading it into 4 bit brackets rather then 8.

Once you find the file, it will probably be mixed in with alot of other junk. Find the start and the end of the file, remembering the byte offsets. copy that, translate it, and put it back in. Chances are it still may not work if there is an MD5 encryption on the file (the program expects a certain size file).

If it does have MD5 encryption, manualy edit all the strings so that the end result will be the same number of bytes, and the same sum. extreemly difficult, and really not worth it.

All in all, you blew some cash, buy an english version.

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OK well type simple "containing text" in the Windows FIND feature didn't work. So anybody know how I can find the text / text strings displayed in-game?

-JMareel

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If the Containing Text find didn't work, then either a) the file(s) containing the game text are compressed and/or encrypted or b) you aren't searching in all possible files. Windoze is very user-friendly in that respect, and often assumes you don't want to be searching program files, archives, hidden folders, and the like. If that's the case, check the search settings. If it's the former case, however, your only option in continuing is to discover what kind of encryption or compression, by examining the binary contents of the files and comparing to known compression and encryption signatures, and attempting to reverse the process. This is likely to be extremely difficult, considering the authors of the game went out of their way, in doing this, to make it hard for people to change.

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Where text strings are kept veries in games. Some games like Civilization III have text files in their program files that you can change but other games might use string tables as resources or just print text to the screen in which case there really isn't anything you can do.

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Thanks all for the replies so prompt and the help. I was hoping that like other older games I used to change text content just to customize the game etc., this would be a somewhat similar case. I guess not. Oh well. Again thanks and I love this website as I dabble in making games. Our HL2 mod team is making a WW2 mod called Resistance and Liberation. So this seems to be a great resource to go to for me to learn.

-JMareel

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Quote:
Original post by TDragon
Windows has a Containing Text option in the Find Files box, no?


That's what I was thinking of when I posted. I use it often. :)

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