Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements-Beta Released!

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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby James Quinn » Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:31 pm

Wow, you guys have been busy! Reading your convo brings back a lot of memories making this thing. Great work!
To respond to your questions, Dreamer;
1. Is this your first RM2k project? - Yes, first and last lol
2. What year was this completed? - I honestly don't remember exactly, maybe Missagh could help me with this but I think it was 2004 or 2005.

ETA:
Also, I was thinking that once you have this ready for play, I'll go ahead and finally do my good and neutral 'Lets Play' videos with your updated version. Both of you will definitely get credit for your improvements, which I'll be sure to notice and mention during the walk-through. My little way of saying thanks. =)
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby LegoMuskCat » Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:03 pm

Aw, so you never did anything else after this? =( And that sounds about right. I remember back when you were making it, too, but I don't remember what year it was, myself, lol. And yay for credits! =D
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby Missagh » Tue Apr 12, 2011 3:31 am

This is great guys. When its finished, depending on the size, Ill see if I can upload it here. If not, we will create a big mirror download choice of file uploading sites. Also I will be adding the youtube videos to the section (sorry for not doing this earlier when requested).

So keep it up!
-- Missagh Alami, webmaster of Phantasy Star Cave.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby Oresama » Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:08 am

I really doubt you will want to host it. James allowed me to take some creative license to upgrade music that seems to have originated in the RTP, so it's sitting about 1.1GB right now. With maximum possible compression it still comes in at 788MB. It's your bandwidth, but I think hosting that is a really bad idea.

As far as keeping it online it would actually be more beneficial to have fewer links rather than more. My Rapidshare links never expire and my Megaupload links only need to be downloaded once every 90 days to remain active. Other free file hosting options have stricter download or space requirements. I would prefer to use Megaupload for two reasons: they give the best download speed for free users and allow free users to download larger files. That 788MB archive would be 1 download at maximum download speed on Megaupload. With Rapidshare it would have to be split into at least 3 pieces, and they slow downloads down heavily after the first 50MB. My Rapidshare uploads are good forever so I'll put it there as a backup, but I really don't recommend it as the primary download. Other free options have limitations similar to Rapidshare.

That said we're getting a little ahead of ourselves with that. I'm only getting ready to release a beta and wasn't going to have you go through all of the trouble of adding it to the main site until it was finished. I'm sure there are things I missed that will need to be improved when other players point them out. An addition to the website would certainly maximize the number of people who would be exposed to it so I don't have a problem with that. I just want to avoid expectations that it is absolutely 100% perfect. I was planning on only bothering you once to add it to the main site too, but if you don't mind the extra updates to the site when I release an upgrade then I certainly don't mind.

There is one other technical detail I'm waiting to get clarification on from Dreamer for a bug I hadn't even posted about yet. Dreamer thought it was finished but didn't seem to work the way I thought it would when I tested it, so I'm waiting for some clarification. In the meantime I fixed everything else I could think of today, so as soon as I hear back from Dreamer one way or the other I will consider the beta complete and post a download link.

I'm putting the finishing touches on a readme to go with it outlining everything that has been changed so far.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby BenoitRen » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:50 pm

How about a "lite" version that has all the changes, except for the music still being MIDI? We could host that instead. People who really want the WAV music would download from Megaupload.

Benoit's Typo Corner will be honoured to beta-test!
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby James Quinn » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:59 pm

That's a great idea Benoit! I think we should definitely take advantage of Missagh's offer one way or another. And of course I want to be a tester as well.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby LegoMuskCat » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:53 am

Oresama wrote:There is one other technical detail I'm waiting to get clarification on from Dreamer for a bug I hadn't even posted about yet. Dreamer thought it was finished but didn't seem to work the way I thought it would when I tested it, so I'm waiting for some clarification. In the meantime I fixed everything else I could think of today, so as soon as I hear back from Dreamer one way or the other I will consider the beta complete and post a download link.
Yeah, it seemed to work fine when I tested it. =( I may have missed something, I'll admit that sometimes I get ahead of myself lol. I will look at what you've sent me to see if I can find out what's wrong. =\ I may have overlooked something small. >.>
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby Zucca » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:05 am

Yeah. 800MB DL is too big for most of the people. I'd stick with midi music.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby carlsojos » Fri Apr 15, 2011 6:55 pm

Zucca wrote:Yeah. 800MB DL is too big for most of the people. I'd stick with midi music.

You can include the high-quality music as a separate download, and have the game recognize when the alternate pack is installed. Some people who have bandwidth to kill can download the music pack while playing with the game for the first time, and then add it later.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby Oresama » Sun Apr 17, 2011 10:49 pm

The MIDI music is gone, and not coming back. Undoing the upgrade will be more work than doing it in the first place. It looks like there are a couple different MP3 hacks out there for RM2K and I'll test it with others once everything else is finalized. I'm not going through that trouble for each beta, nor interested in troubleshooting MP3-specific problems at this point. The conversion and testing of an MP3 version will be a lot more work than the initial replacement. Considering that the download takes a whopping 25 minutes on my crappy 5mbps connection, and Megaupload is hosting it for free, reducing the size for the uber impatient is not a high priority. If your connection is worse than mine, and you have other downloads running, it might take an hour. Again, no sympathy if you can't wait an hour (or two in a really worst case scenario for the hair splitters) to start playing a beta of a 30 hour game.

As far as I know RM2K cannot function the way carlsojos said, as one specific music track is explicitly assigned without boolean arguments. Even if it would take boolean arguments, I still wouldn't do it because the only thing I set out to upgrade initially was the soundtrack. Everything else has been a result of an in for a penny in for a pound mentality. I'm going to experiment with high quality MP3s once all other changes for the final build have been made, and that's it. If you don't like it, don't play it. I'm starting to understand why so many fan developers abandon projects long before they finish, and I'm not doing nearly as much work as building a game from scratch. That said, I'm not abandoning this project, and if you can't wait the length of the download don't play it. Now that that is out of the way it's time for a happy post.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements

Postby Oresama » Sun Apr 17, 2011 10:55 pm

The beta is here! I'm not sure how long Dreamer will be working on the other bug alluded to before, so I'm going to go ahead and release what I have so far as the first beta. The 778MB download is ready and waiting.

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=7TJH14FU

Here is a rundown of all upgrades made to this beta:

-The original MIDI soundtrack has been mostly scrapped. Music from Phantasy Star and Phantasy Star II have been replaced with WAVs of the same music from the Phantasy Star Collection I CD. Music from Phantasy Star IV has been replaced with WAVs taken from perfect MP3 rips of the original game. Music from mainstream bands has been replaced with the original.
All MIDIs I found by going through the editor have been fixed. It's entirely possible that I missed some (especially those triggered during events). Please let me know if you find any.
-The random encounter rate has been cut by 2/3. Enemies now give triple experience and meseta to compensate. Random encounter enemies that previously gave no experience or meseta now give experience and meseta comparable to other enemies in that part of the game. Even with these changes the player does not have a ton of extra money left over at the end, forcing the player to grind to stock up on some of the more expensive items. This honors the pace of the original. When killing all random encounter enemies experience and meseta will be reasonably similar to what they would be if killing all enemies in the original.
-The game script has been greatly cleaned up. There were too many typos, misspellings, punctuations errors, etc. to catalog, but they have mostly been corrected. It is possible that I missed some events or forget to apply the changes to the script, so if you come across anything else that needs to be fixed when playing please let me know.
-The script was also modified to give the game consistency. For example, at times Roadpass was capitalized, and other times it wasn't. I modified the script so it should always be capitalized. If any inconsistencies in style are found while playing please let me know so I can correct it.
-All items made from Laconia have had there names modified to be uniform, using the Phantasy Star II naming convention of Laconia [Weapon/Armor]. Some were called Laconium and others Laconian.
-Random encounters in the Landrover have been eliminated.
-Problems with on-screen effects (snow, rain, drunken shaking) have been corrected by modifying changes to the world map. The game will no longer rain forever, snow forever, shake forever or a combination of of multiple unending effects when something slips through the programming cracks.
-The guard in the Control Tower in Camineet used to have dialog about locating the guard captain, which was related to to finding Dune in Loar. The confusing dialog was removed.
-The background for random battles inside Noah was changed to a background that looks like the inside of a spaceship, matching the tiles on the map. It previously used the same background that would be seen in random encounters outside Camineet in Phantasy Star I.
-Put my name on the title screen taking credit only for the modifications I claim to make, and leaving JFQ's credit as I told him I would.
-Lastly and most mercifully, awful noise the game would make after the Army EYE tells Jams to go to the Artificial Continent until the end of the game has been fixed. The thunder sound effect does not infinitely loop an infinite number of times anymore.

This has not been fully tested on all 3 paths. As always if you find something else that can be made better, speak up so it can be upgraded.

A lot of the music that did not come from Phantasy Star games seems to have come from the RTP from what James told me. With his blessing I took some creative license to put something better in there. This is a complete list of those changes.

-When getting drunk on anything from the robot bartender the music changes to “Poison” by Groove Coverage
-Music used during scenes in Abion's Underground Storage and Governor's Mansion was changed from Anger to “Zero Hour” by Kanno Yoko
-An event in Scion's Fish House with the Bouncer now plays “The Game” by Motorhead instead of NiTrOTeCh
-The boss fight on the first floor of Medusa's Tower now features “Whoever Brings the Night” by Nightwish instead of Battle3
-An event in the Secret Fortress uses “Cry Little Sister” by Blutengel instead of Spirit
-The battle with Plumb plays Marilyn Manson's “Disposable Teens” instead of Boss1
-Flying Dragon in Loar now uses a version of Canon in D instead of Casino
-The Haaken Dead Lounge uses a different version of Canon in D instead of Casino
-Luveno's Lounge was changed from Pirate to “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson
-The music in the underground area behind Luveno's Bar was changed from Treasure to “Bye Bye Beautiful” by Nightwish
-The Fish House was changed from Animal to “Ninjin Loves You Yeah” by Nakajima Megumi
-BGM in Haunted City went from Boss4 to “Isolated” by Chiasm
-Music in Gothic was changed to Spray's “I Am Gothic”

An incredibly HUGE thanks goes to Dreamer. Dreamer took care of eliminating random battles in the Landrover and fixed the weather/shaking events (which also fixed the awful noise made after getting instructions from Army EYE late in the game). This saved me the trouble of learning how to do these things from scratch and I can't even make a guess as to how much faster this was released thanks to Dreamer.

Thanks also goes to James Quinn for making the game and endorsing my intended modifications. We'll see if that sticks after he sees what I did to his game.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements-Beta Releas

Postby LegoMuskCat » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:17 am

Awesome that you've released the beta! :D And hey, it's no problem. ^_^ I was away on a mini-vacation of sorts last weekend, so I was busy all of last week getting ready for that (which, of course, postponed some work I still need to do...yay for procrastination!). Here's hoping I can get some more things done after communicating some issues I was having with the game, myself, when I was trying to fix something. A finalized and completed release of this would make me happy since I've been juggling another project on the side for sometime now. >.> Lol.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements-Beta Releas

Postby James Quinn » Mon Apr 18, 2011 3:21 pm

Sounds awesome, but the link isn't working. Did you take it down for some reason? Im stoked to try this out.
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements-Beta Releas

Postby Dr_Odin » Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:13 pm

Oresama this is so cool!!!

I (and many others) will choose to wait until the beta testing is finished and play through the whole improved game! Can't wait for it!

Continue to keep us updated...
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Re: Phantasy Star 2.5 Fallen Planet Improvements-Beta Releas

Postby Oresama » Mon Apr 18, 2011 10:58 pm

I am using the term beta to avoid people assuming it's absolutely positively perfect in every single way, but save for people finding more bugs to fix it is at least 99% done for what the final version will be. The kinds of things I'm expecting to come up at this point are things like there should be a comma here or you forgot to capitalize this one word there. Due to the somewhat non-linear style of the game it's quite possible that no matter how many times I play through it there will be a coding issue I will just never see, or I've see certain things so many times my brain just translates it into whatever it should be, instead of what is actually on the screen. In that case it will never be found unless other people play it. I'm calling it a beta instead of calling it 1.0 and then releasing a 1.01 with very minor changes. If you're waiting because you're expecting there to be a huge difference between this and the final version, you are waiting for nothing. I do not foresee any other major changes being made. This may well end up being the final version, just like the last "beta" James released 6-7 years ago.
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