[ROM] (C64) - Annoying hack and cracktro ROMs

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[ROM] (C64) - Annoying hack and cracktro ROMs

Post by Russell Quayle on Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:34 am

Hi guys

I'm hoping someone can help, however, I'm likely going to split the opinions of many with this one, so for this, I apologize.  It is not my intention to undermine or seem unappreciative of peoples/teams hard work on the ROM scene (past or present), but, I have to ask this.  Basically, many C64 games I've fired up recently to play and relive many childhood memories have been thwart by these so called "hack" or "cracktro" (aka trainer) ROMs.  

By this, I mean that before you get into the game, you are often given a very cool, often animated splash screen with a very nice SID playing for your viewing (and listening) pleasure.  These are mostly embedded by the people or the team that cracked the copy protection of the game and which usually pay homage, thanks or greetz to many people who helped with the process (I get it, great work!).  That said, I find it very frustrating getting past these screens because there is often no universal way to skip/exit them so you can get into the game.  Many games/ROMs often include “trainer” or built in cheats to give you infinite health/lives, etc, but, again I mostly have the same issues exiting out of theses too!  Pressing the obvious things like the spacebar, return key or pressing the “fire” button on the controller/joystick does nothing and it’s not like we can press escape either Very Happy None of them seemingly have anything visible on screen that says "press the X key" or "do this to continue"  lol!

In a number of cases when you finally figure out how to get past them, you end up with a game you cannot play.  This is mainly because it’s been hacked or tinkered with so much they often don’t load, or they simply crash.  A few examples (in no particular order) are: -

Fantasy World Dizzy
Treasure Island Dizzy
Commando
ATV
Impossible Mission
Winter Games
Spy vs Spy
Lode Runner
M.U.L.E
Last Ninja 2
Rainbow Islands
Rygar

The short version?  Is there a “clean” romset we can use that just allows us to play the games exactly as we remember them?

Any input appreciated as always!

Many thanks!

Russell Quayle

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Re: [ROM] (C64) - Annoying hack and cracktro ROMs

Post by tazzz on Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:25 pm

To be fair : I am not sure if this is up to the games versus the emulator configured for the c64.
I am not sure why CCS64 was used : this is ancient (2009) and hanged immediately on my system. The other 8-bit commodore systems uses winvice which imho is way better.

I setup winvice3.1 for all these : the version of winvice on the drive is 2.4 which is also old. 3.1 has better joystick support : in settings enabling joy keys and it recognized automatically my two xbox controllers. Just create an emulator pointing to the x64.exe binary with winvice.ahk module.

One issue with winvice : on windows 10 with certain graphic cards (nvidia) it will overlap the menu over the game. To fix : right click x64.exe (or xplus.exe, ....) - compatibility tab and mark 'Disable Full screen optimizations'

I went through all the games you listed and got them all playing with joystick without any issue. Going through the trainers is either A key on joystick, capslock, ~', or space key. Had to google how to get 'coins' in for rainbow islands : shift F7

The c64 is a keyboard based system : I don't think there is an universal way to setup for all the games.

But to skip the trainers : the best rom-set is the no-intro set. But that will not cover all the games. If the moderators / chris want I can do see to add the non-trainer versions available and upload



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Re: [ROM] (C64) - Annoying hack and cracktro ROMs

Post by Russell Quayle on Fri Apr 27, 2018 8:54 am

Thanks for the reply tazzz.  I don't really mind which emulator it is, I would just like it to work well enough to play the games.

I'm also running Windows 10 and whilst this could be a factor, there doesn't appear to be any issues generally with the emulator or the controls.  So for me I think it is just the romset that has been used, perhaps because it is the version that is most readily available.  I will try some of the keys you have used to bypass them and see if that works.

I'd be a lot happier with a no-intro set personally, however, this would probably upset everyone else.  Being a C64 fan and it being my first real games computer as a kid, I just want to play the games the way I used to (cracktros and trainers weren't a thing back then).  

It's also a shame that it will be the more prolific titles have had all these changes made to them by these cracking groups, but, that's probably also because they would have had the best copy protections methods (of the day) in them.

Thanks again for your input.

Russell Quayle

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Re: [ROM] (C64) - Annoying hack and cracktro ROMs

Post by James M on Mon Apr 30, 2018 6:52 am

Looking into this; I believe the no intro set also has the cracktos, most of these are from after the scene was wearing down and those groups were around to save those games. I think we use the Internet Archive set; I compiled JT for chris and used the latest one.

He used other emulator because it played nice on win7 and Win10 setups; should be less of an issue now. We’ll do some testing.

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Re: [ROM] (C64) - Annoying hack and cracktro ROMs

Post by tazzz on Mon Apr 30, 2018 2:23 pm

I just did a quick check : the no-intro set is pristine but hardly complete. Clean loading and game. On a quick scan it found about 700 of the 2000+ games but I would need to look into it a bit more. It might be worthwhile to replace these : happy todo so, let me know.
I really hope that the switch to winvice 3.1 is happening.
On a side note : the whole set is great - eg the pause stuff included is awesome - nice job!
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