Virtual Console Release: Final Fantasy III for NES

August 3, 2009

Another good one for today.  Here’s a fully translated Final Fantasy III for the NES.  This game was never released in the United States or Europe, and we only got a 3D Nintendo DS remake.  This game uses a very good fan translation.  As usual, this comes with custom images and a custom manual to make it a proper release.  As expected, this is a very slick NES RPG.  See for yourself.  Note that this video uses the untranslated Japanese version of the game.

I have noticed a glitch in this release and the Final Fantasy release.  If you resume play without resetting the game, the graphics get all corrupted.  I don’t think this interferes with savegames though, so when you resume the game, be sure to click the Home button and press Reset.  This also answers your question if you’re wondering why I didn’t release Final Fantasy II today — the graphics glitches in its injection make the game all but unplayable.

Download:  HERE


Virtual Console Release: Final Fantasy for NES

August 3, 2009

Here’s a great release for today.  As usual, this includes custom banner/savegame images as well as a custom manual.  Final Fantasy is a game that needs very little description.  It is virtually responsible for launching the mainstream RPG market as we know it today.  See for yourself:

Download:  HERE

Also, note that I have started using .RAR files instead of .ZIP files for my releases.  This is because .RAR files have a better compression ratio than .ZIP files.  If you’re on Windows, you’ll need something like WinRAR to open these files.  If you’re on Mac, I would recommend RAR Expander.

Virtual Console Release: Monster Party for NES

August 2, 2009

This is today’s release. Monster Party, an NES game release in 1989, is a forgotten gem.  It’s without a doubt one of the goriest games on the NES, but it also had a lot of twisted humor in it.  For example, one of the bosses is a gigantic piece of fried shrimp.  This game can at times be difficult and frustrating, but it’s quite a bit of fun to play.  You may have heard some angry reviewers on YouTube (such as the “original” Irate Gamer) take a shot at this game, but I wouldn’t take it from them.  You’ll get as much out of this game as you put into it.  One of the things I especially like about this game is the sound.  For 1989, it was a bit ahead of its time, especially in the effects department. See for yourself in this great video playthrough:

As usual, this includes an official-style manual and proper images to make this look like an official Nintendo release.  Enjoy!  Also, I’m taking requests for any NES games you would like to have injected as a WAD, so if you have any, just comment.

Download:  HERE

Virtual Console Release: Karnov for NES

July 31, 2009

Here’s another release I injected today: Karnov.  Like I said, I’m first trying to do all of the games that I had as a kid, and that includes the really weird games too.  Karnov is the epitome of a weird NES game.  My mom gave me this game as a gift when I was a kid, and just by looking at the box art, I knew it was going to be really off the wall.  As soon as I put it in to try it out, my hunch was right.  This game makes absolutely no sense.  Why does Karnov ride in and out of levels on a lightning bolt?  Why can you only get hit twice before you die? When you get hit, you turn blue — is Karnov suffocating when you get hit?  Why are so many things in this game orange?  Why does Karnov jump like he’s on the moon?  Why is there zero gravity when you fall from a cliff?  Why are animated statues and snake/dinosaur hybrids trying to kill you?  This game makes no sense.

Includes official-like manual and all the custom images to make this a proper release.  Enjoy.

Download:  HERE

Virtual Console Release: Clash at Demonhead for NES

July 31, 2009

Here’s my second injected WAD release.  This time around, I have included a better, more official-like, custom manual.  For these injected WAD releases, I’ll first be releasing all of the games that I had as a kid.  As you’ll see by this one, I had some pretty wild stuff.  Clash at Demonhead was a really weird game that I bought from the video store when I was about seven or eight years old.  It’s an adventure platformer that has elements of Mega Man and Legend of Zelda, with a Japanese anime twist.  I personally never got very far into it, but reviewers on the internet have recently given it a lot of hype that is probably well-deserved.  See for yourself:

Download:  HERE

Oh, and for anyone interested, I’ve changed my handle to the Random College Student so that none of the activities on this blog are in any way misconstrued as somehow representing my university.

Virtual Console Release: Aero the Acro-Bat 2 for SNES

July 30, 2009

My Wii softmodding guide has so far been a huge success!  Now I’m going to start releasing injected WADs for great Virtual Console games that aren’t out yet and thus far haven’t been injected.  My first release is Aero the Acro-Bat 2, widely considered by many reviewers to be one of the best platformers for the SNES.  Unfortunately, however, not many people played it and the game didn’t have very good sales.

After this game was released in 1994, Aero became Sunsoft’s mascot for a short while.  Then stuff happened and Sunsoft had to close all of its overseas offices.  The company now no longer operates outside of Japan.

Download:  HERE

Install it like any other WAD by placing the file in your SD card’s wad folder and installing it to IOS249 with WAD Manager.  Enjoy!

Complete Wii Softmodding / Hacking Guide, Part 5: The Fruits of Your Labor

July 27, 2009

This is the fifth and final part of my Wii softmodding guide.  If you haven’t already, please go through parts one, two, three, and four to get up to speed.  In this part of the guide, we won’t be doing any hacking at all — we finished all of that stuff in part four.  Your Wii is hacked, now let’s run awesome homebrew software on it!

Earthbound Zero.  By the time youre done with this section, itll be installed on your Wii.

Earthbound Zero. By the time you're done with this section, it'll be installed on your Wii.

In this section, we’ll run a Gameboy Advance emulator, install an English Virtual Console version of Earthbound Zero, get familiar with the Homebrew Browser, and learn how to burn a backed up disc.  I will also provide invaluable links that no will doubt help you in the near future.  I have prepared a third SD pack for you so that you can get started, so go ahead and wipe out your SD card again and extract the files from the pack to it.

SD Pack 3

Once all that business is done, start up your Wii with your SD card inserted and boot up the Homebrew Channel.  You’ll see the familiar WAD Manager, but we’ve got a few new programs here as well:  Visual Boy Advance GX, Homebrew Browser, NeoGamma, and USB Loader GX.  I’ll discuss what each of these do.

Homebrew Browser — Lets you download new homebrew software directly onto your Wii from the internet.  You don’t have to remove your SD card or anything.  You can download everything from a PlayStation emulator to a Wii port of Doom using this program.  Once downloaded, these programs can then be launched from the Homebrew Channel.

Visual Boy Advance GX — A very good Gameboy Advance emulator for the Wii.  You can now play your games on the big screen at full speed with no hassle.

NeoGamma — A popular game backup loader that can launch games from DVD, USB drive, and even SD/SDHC card.

USB Loader GX — Another popular backup loader that specializes in launching games from a USB drive.

Why don’t we go ahead and launch VBAgx?  Load it from the Homebrew Channel.  Once it has loaded, you will immediately be prompted with a game select screen.  For convenience, I have put several popular Gameboy, Gameboy Color, and Gameboy Advance games in SD Pack 3.  Why don’t you go ahead and pick one?  My favorite is probably Link’s Awakening DX.

VBAgx will faithfully emulate any GB, GBC, or GBA game.

VBAgx will faithfully emulate any GB, GBC, or GBA game.

Once you’re done playing, you can exit out of VBAgx just like you would anything else on the Wii by pressing the Home button and closing out.  If you later want to add more ROMs to VBAgx, all you need to do is insert your SD card back to your computer and place your ROMs in the X:\VBAgx\ROMS folder (X: represents the drive letter of your card).

Let’s try the Homebrew Browser now.  Once you boot it up, it will connect to its servers and download whatever content it needs to download.  This application automatically updates itself nearly every day to keep up with the latest homebrew releases.  If you want to download something from the Homebrew Browser, all you need to do is just click it and press Download.  You can play with that for a little bit if you like 🙂

USB Loader GX has a very user-friendly GUI.

USB Loader GX has a very user-friendly GUI.

Now I’m going to talk about NeoGamma and USB Loader GX.  These programs both have the capability of launching game images (.ISO files) from USB drives formatted in a WBFS partition.  Yes, WBFS is very unusual and probably Wii-specific.  You can format your drive to WBFS using a program called WBFS Manager (Google it.)  You also use WBFS Manager to move ISO files to the drive.  I haven’t seen an operating system yet that can natively access a WBFS partition.  Once your ISO files are on the drive, just connect your drive to the Wii (if it doesn’t work, try the other USB port.. it has two of them) and the loader you use should detect the games.  USB Loader GX is prettier, but I added NeoGamma because some people just prefer it.

Okay, how about we install Earthbound Zero onto your Wii?  Open WAD Manager, use IOS249 and your SD card as the device.  Select the WAD and install it like you would any other WAD.  Exit WAD Manager and then exit the Homebrew Channel to return to the System Menu.  A new game should be on your system menu: Earthbound Zero for the NES.  Pretty neat, isn’t it?  Oh, one last thing.  In order to download new WADs and have them appear in your WAD Manager install list, all you need to do is put them in the “wad” folder on your SD card.

Alright, now as far as playing backed up Wii and GameCube games goes… first you’ll need to get your hands on an ISO file.  Once you have that file, you can burn it to a DVD-R using ImgBurn (Google it).  I recommend burning at 4X speed.  Once the burn is done, all you have to do is put the disc in your Wii, and thanks to our cIOSCORP hack we did in part four, it should pop up and work great!

If you’re interested in playing import games that were released outside of your region, click here.

Alright, to close out this tutorial, I’m going to provide a collection of my favorite places to go for Wii stuff, including where to download Virtual Console/WiiWare WADs and where to download Wii ISO’s.  Enjoy.

Huge Virtual Console/WiiWare WAD Library

AfterDawn Wii Section — Home to a lot of great tutorials, including the ones that some of this guide was based on

TehParadox Console Games Section — Sticky thread here has links to nearly every Wii ISO in existence — A great Wii resource — An all-around great Nintendo hacking resource — A great Wii homebrew wiki.  You can learn a lot just from reading the articles here.

Here! — I’ll keep posting Wii stuff as I get more into homebrew development and my own personal projects!

I hope my series of tutorials has helped you!  Please post comments of your success stories, or if you have questions post them as a comment too.  I’d love to get feedback from people who made it all the way through 🙂