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Jimakoma

"Hacking" a .rom file, is it doable?

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I apologize for my naive question. I was hoping to get some information concerning that. Remember the NEO-GEO roms? Is there any possibility to "hack" and work with the code and mess with the graphics or the whole game rules? Thank you.     

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There's entire communities based around this subject. Although I'm not really sure on the legality of talking about something like that here.

 

I'm sure you've seen modded roms before yes? The super mario roms that are insanely hard come to mind, amongst many others. I would say a google search would probably help you out a lot on the subject.

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This is a tricky legal area. You may not be doing anything illegal if all you do is strictly hack the ROM to make it do what you want, but if you copy its contents (which, BTW, is required to hack the ROM), you're breaking the law.

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I will google it further more, thank you very much. I wanted to "modify" the rom in order to make some sort of expansion of an old SNK video game series called Samurai Showdown. I need to provide them with a demo and I'm trying to find a way to do it without starting from scratch.

 

What if I do it in order to just do a proposition to SNK of reviving the title? Not that they would reply to my call for contact but assuming I had a developer representative like John Cook from Bad management, who's willing to review my work and he approved it and decided to be my frond man. Is it still illegal?

 

Thank you for replying in such sort notice  

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This is a tricky legal area. You may not be doing anything illegal if all you do is strictly hack the ROM to make it do what you want, but if you copy its contents (which, BTW, is required to hack the ROM), you're breaking the law.


One could distribute a patch, containing no data from the original ROM and requiring it to build the hacked ROM.
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You could hack a rom in fact half the arcade games outhere are hacked bootlegs.  Why would you want to do this for a demo though.  Couldn't you just use muGen?

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In order to conclude my own topic so I leave it be somewhat useful to anyone who searches for .rom "hacking" or "modding" I include the links to the info I was able to gather in my google search. MUGEN is something I had totally forgot about. Years back when I was following their updates, I seem to lost track of their works, maybe because Elecbyte withdrew, I don't recall. So, MUGEN is absolutely a good choice for me, thank you. I still got some questions though concerning MUGEN, like if it could be possible to add ranking boards or point award systems. To anyone who can answer me this, it would be better to contact me through personal message as we're getting out of topic if we talk about it here. Thanks again for the support!

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ROM_hacking

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M.U.G.E.N

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This is a tricky legal area. You may not be doing anything illegal if all you do is strictly hack the ROM to make it do what you want, but if you copy its contents (which, BTW, is required to hack the ROM), you're breaking the law.


One could distribute a patch, containing no data from the original ROM and requiring it to build the hacked ROM.

But to create a patch, you'll need the contents of the ROM, which gets into a tricky legal area.

Edited by MarkS
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To the best of my knowledge, in the US any reverse engineering without the consent of the owner is illegal, as are any tools that are specifically oriented toward such activities. These are civil matters, though, and I've never heard of a case where anything stronger than a C&D happened. It costs a lot of money to sue someone.

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The tools for doing it are not illegal (I made MHS (Memory Hacking Software) which is a popular tool for reverse-engineering things) just as emulators are not illegal but the ROM’s are.  Ultimately none of it matters unless a lawsuit goes your way, but I’ve never heard of such a thing ever actually happening.  Ever.

 

 

L. Spiro

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I was wondering if any of you happened to have any experience "modding" a NEO-RAGE X emulator .rom. I read in the wiki about expanding a rom, here's the paragraph:

 

[Generally speaking, a ROM hacker cannot add content to a game, but merely change existing content. This limit can be overcome through ROM expansion, whereby the total size of the ROM image is increased, making room for more content and a larger game. The difficulty in doing this varies depending on the system for which the game was made. For example, expanding an NES ROM may be difficult or even impossible due to the mapper used by the game. For example, if a mapper allows 16 ROM banks and all of them are used, expanding the ROM further is impossible without somehow converting the game to another mapper, which could be easy or extremely difficult. On the other hand, expanding a Super NES game is (relatively) straightforward. To utilize the added space, parts of the game code have to be modified or re-written (see Assembly hacking above) so the game knows where to look. Another type of ROM expansion that is fairly easy is Game Boy Advance ROMs. The ROMs themselves are generally small, but the memory space available sometimes exceeds it by multiples of up to 17.]

 

Does this apply to NEO-GEO roms too? I need to add content...

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(sorry, the only spear time I currently got is in between breaks at work) will do a better search in forums thank you. smile.png

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This is a tricky legal area. You may not be doing anything illegal if all you do is strictly hack the ROM to make it do what you want, but if you copy its contents (which, BTW, is required to hack the ROM), you're breaking the law.

 In the United Stated, it is legal to copy ROMs  as long as you own the original game.

It is Illegal to give others a copy of the ROM or modified ROM, unless they own the original game.

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