Hello AiB and welcome to the third installment of Methodical Madness. Well, this is actually the fourth installment but for some odd reason my second article got overlooked. Apparently it was illegal or something. I didn't argue it becuase, yeah, that sounds like something I would do. Anyway, this article will be shorter then my usual stuff. I figured I'd give Miles of SmashWiki a break from having to edit all of the grammar mistakes from my lengthy reports this time so I'm gonna be a bit more direct with this one. =P
It's as if Mewtwo was watching out for me because the moment I got finished interviewing PhantomWings for my last article a miracle happened. A little project that I'd never heard of before called "BrawlBox" popped into my life out of nowhere and turned the entire Brawl hacking universe up side down for me.
As of late, a continuous slew of updated hacks for Brawl have come about just begging to be exploited further. This series of events, of which I shall from now on refer to as "The Pattern" (Yay for Fringe references), has lead up to the development of a program that has single handedly simplified everything we know about basic customization of Brawl's infinitely restricted character selection. Everything from a character's textures to the character's animations can be exported, modified, and re-imported to replace the old materials with not so much as a single complicated step.
Today we salute Kryal, the creator of BrawlBox. His efforts have been greatly appreciated by many and will continue to benefit us all in the coming months whilst we attempt to fully modify the character roster in order to add new players to the game.
Introducing... Brawl Box
BrawlBox has, for lack of a better word, revolutionized the way that we view the world of Brawl customization. This program gives one the ability to open up encrypted files from the disc and view them in a simplified and effective manner.
Each feature of BrawlBox has been added to give the user significant control over what they want to do with the game. It comes complete with tools to open and view ARChive Pack (*.pac), Compressed ARChive (*.pcs), BRResource Pack (*.brres), MSBin Message List (*.msbin), Sound Archive (*.brsar), and Sound Stream (*.brstm) files. Exporting these files used to be a painful task but with BrawlBox it has become little more than a click of the mouse.
The program allows the user to view a great deal of things within the character's make up in order to really get a feel of everything that's going on inside the game. It has a built in texture viewer that lets you see which textures you're exporting before you put them into your favorite editing program for modification.
Can you guess who this is? I'm sure you can.
Along with that the program gives the user the ability to view a character's model data as well. In the model viewer the user has the option of opening a character's motion files in a side menu which will allow them to view a character's individual animations frame by frame and, with the right amount of skill, make changes to them. However, there isn't a built in animation modifier tool so making changes to an animation is very hard work at this point has to be done numerically frame by frame. By the time someone finished reanimating a character from scratch there would probably be an animation program available.
Another cool thing you can do is swap animations between characters. If you want to see Ganondorf do Snake's Nair you can!
Brawl has tons of security measures which force the game to freeze if certain standards aren't met. A character's .pac file is only allowed to be so big when loaded into the game or it will freeze, if it is too small it will freeze, if a character's bones don't match up they will freeze, and there are probably a ton of undiscovered reasons hiding amongst the files as well. This makes editing characters a complete pain in the butt.
The biggest problem at the moment is the bone structure of a model. To the left you see the bones of the assist trophy Gray Fox. To the right we have the playable character Marth. As you can see the difference in the sheer amount of bones is pretty drastic. At first glance you might not think so, but take a look at marth's left hand.
It alone consists of more bones than most of Gray Fox's entire upper body. To port Gray Fox over Marth's model would almost definitely cause the game to freeze because Marth's animations would make calls for bones that weren't available in the model.
Sadly we are unable to extract the bones from one model and import them into another (believe me, I've tried about 10 different ways with no success). You have to extract the entire model or nothing at all. Extracting a model's bones and polygons does nothing when importing it into a new model without everything else that's supposed to go with it.
There is currently only one way to successfully do it and that method is to replace an alloy's model (red, green or yellow - blue has too many bones) with the model of an assist trophy but those characters are glitchy, freeze the game on occasion, and they don't have the ability to ledge grab, dodge, or use B-button special moves.
Another interesting feature of BrawlBox is that it allows the user to modify some of the text within the game as well. One fan favorite is that you are capable of changing the names of the songs that are playing during the battle. The name of the song will appear at the beginning of the battle between some music notes, I'm sure you've noticed this. In combination of the Dynamic SD Loader code you are able to put custom music in your game and have it labled correctly during your battle without having to use tons of Hex to simply change the names that appear on screen. BrawlBox gives you a simple method of doing it right there in the program. Just find the name of the song you want, erase it and type something new. Now when you start your battle instead of "Final Destination" showing up on your screen you'll see "My Milkshake Brings All of the Young Fellows Over Into my Yard" if you wish.
One of the funnier things that I did with my game was change the names of the difficulty levels of the CPU's AI.
1.) PUNY ==> F-TIER
2.) WIMPY ==> D-TIER
3.) WEAK ==> C-TIER
4.) NORMAL ==> B-TIER
5.) HARDY ==> A-TIER
6.) STRONG ==> S-TIER
7.) BURLY ==> JESUS CHRIST
8.) MIGHTY ==> HOLY ****
9.) NASTY ==> CHUCK NORRIS
Not to mention all of the other weird crap that it lets you do >.>