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Help needed for Super Boulder Dash

 
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Arno
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Joined: 17 Mar 2007
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Location: netherlands

PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2007 2:38 pm    Post subject: Help needed for Super Boulder Dash Reply with quote

A Boulder Dash fan wrote me that he had a problem with Super Boulder Dash. This is what he wrote:
Quote:
I've bought a disk with Super Boulder Dash in the USA. The problem is that the game won't load. Side 1 contains BD1 and side 2 contains BD2. If I try to load them, it all seems going well until the EA logo appears. At this point it keeps loading but doesn't start. I sent the disk back to the USA and received another one, but exactly the same problem. What can it be? USA, Europe, or NTSC, PAL?

Anyone has an idea?


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RTADash
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Joined: 26 May 2007
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2007 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd have to guess that the game is in NTSC, since it shipped from the USA, but I don't know If that could make it stop loading right away... Confused
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Maupin
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2007 8:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a thought... EA had a pretty complex copy protection scheme / fast loading utility (it's what's going on when the EA logo is flashing) and I had a few EA games stop during the load utility when the disk became corrupted.

That's all I can think of at the moment. Super Boulder Dash from EA and the box seen above are what introduced me to Boulder Dash. Both sides worked for me in the USA on my Commodore 128 (in 64 mode).

When I loaded it up and started playing the first cave, I fell in love instantly. I had always gone straight to the Dig Dug machines in the arcade and this game blew that out of the water.
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LogicDeLuxe
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2007 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The game itself is the unaltered NTSC version on any release, including those sold in PAL countries, thus the non working intermission in BD1.

The problem could well be a custom loader or a copyprotection depending on an NTSC C64.

I don't know if the disk is encrypted (which is the case with more advanced copy protection schemes.) If not, you should be able to just load the game instead of the loader and start it with a sys command.

BD1: sys36432
BD2: sys49152
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Arno
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 6:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ruben sent me a .d64 file of side 1 of his disk.

I managed to load BD1 succesfully when WinVICE is in the NTSC mode. But in the PAL mode the program crashes just after the EA logo has started flashing. So I guess this disk was made for NTSC machines only...

Anyway, the help was much apreciated! Very Happy
-- Edit: download link removed...
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Last edited by Arno on Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:39 am; edited 1 time in total
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CWS
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Joined: 11 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As I can remember EA had a copy protection on the disc. Something of a bad sector or somthing like that? Can't remember exactely. I remember exactely that I found a site on the net with information about this disk. It's a site about backuping old C64 games - but you can not download anything there. I try to find it again!

If possible can you ask Ruben to dump both sides again and keep an eye of any method to also dump the copy protection? A complete backup of both sides would be very much appreciated here... Smile
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LogicDeLuxe
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All about C64 copy protections can be found here: http://c64preservation.com/
Super Boulder Dash is also in the data base.

The Microfun and First Star releases are very primitive, as they are merely checking for a missing sector.

I never saw an original copy of Super Boulder Dash, as it apparently is NTSC only, they wouldn't sell it in Europe anyways. The database has listed pirateslayer there which requires a parallel nibbler to copy.
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CWS
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 9:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, this was the site! Smile

I think it must be a bad dump. Maybe you can describe exactely how to dump the disk? Or is there any documentation?

It would simply be great to have a working backup of the original Super Boulder Dash collection!
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LogicDeLuxe
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CWS wrote:
I think it must be a bad dump. Maybe you can describe exactely how to dump the disk?
I have no experience with that protection.
I don't think that it's a bad dump as it works in NTSC mode, eventhough the loader accesses track 37, which is not present in the image.
It might well be that Super Boulder Dash was meant for NTSC regions only. In fact, I never saw it officially sold to Europe.

Edit:
I took a further look into that image. The game itself is a regular file, except that it doesn't appear in the directory. Its start position is track 1 sector 1 and it is 65 blocks long. It is not compressed, but encrypted by simply exor all bytes (including the start address) with 0xEA.
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