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Author Topic: Team Apache - New FM anyone?
Jont
unregistered

posted 04-08-2000 06:42 PM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hello,
(please excuse the long post - and the occasional
all caps - meant for emphasis - not shouting).

I've recently been visiting this forum regularly in order to
keep up with the status (and state) of Team-ALLIGATOR and have
been somewhat enlightened (if not a trifle disappointed) to
read so much criticism of the FM in the game. I was looking
here to see if it was worth buying (I've been looking forward to
it for ages) - having been an avid fan of Team-APACHE.

Team-APACHE, I think, was a terrific piece of programming
for many reasons - partly for its gorgeous graphics - but
also because of its scalability (it ran acceptably on my old
P100 with a not-very-good graphics card on). I know that
the FM in Team-APACHE (and in Team-ALLIGATOR too) is deliberately
'dummed-down' so as to make the game 'more accessible' - supposedly.

Anyway, to the point, whilst meandering through the posts here, i
notice that there have been references to Team-APACHE by some people
who also enjoyed/appreciated the game. So, if anyone is interested
i have (after many of hours hacking) managed to work out some patches
that modify the FM - to something that I find acceptible. So I wish to
share these with anyone that's interested.

The patch will take a bit to explain, so as this is already becoming
a bit of a long post i shall just explain what's 'fixed' and ask if
anyone would be interested in trying it out - to see if i should post
further details.

These are the 'problems' solved:
1 Reduction/Elimination of excessive Damping (damping in x/y/z space)
(the damping is what causes the: 'angle the heli at, say 15-20 degrees
and nothing happens) (as also seen in Team-ALLIGATOR - I'm working
on it) - This is *the* biggy for me - it just looks *so* wrong.
2 Reduction/Elimination of Damping (damping in pitch/roll) (not sure about yaw)
This allows the heli to 'right-itself' - even from small deflections from
horizontal.
3 Eliminate 'Lurch' - it's hard to describe this - the heli 'lurches' forward
as you *move* stick forward - not as a result of being tilted forward)
4 Reduce low end control severity (change log/non-linear table)
You'd only really notice this after the above lot have been applied.

(My patch can also eliminate the intro movies - oh, bliss)

OK, don't sound much, but it took me a long time to get to that stage -
and for *me* it makes a hell of a difference.

I'd be very pleased to supply more details to anyone that's interested
and get a second opinion as to whether it's worth pursuing...
- caveat - if anyone is interested - then I should warn that my current
set of patches are for APACHE.EXE (Direct3D Primary Hardware) - if there is
sufficient interest then I may be able to work out similar patches
for the alternate exes (3dfx etc).

Again, sorry for long post, if anyone's interested then please post your
interest and I'll post further details of the patch (actually the patch
itself is very small but takes a bit of explaining).

Jont

(P.S. I've been trying to do the same for Team-ALLIGATOR, and so far have
patch - 1 (heli angled but not moving) solved - but in this case there is
*no* friction whatsoever and heli never slows down!)


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Hatchet
Member
Member # 4103

posted 04-08-2000 07:31 PM     Profile for Hatchet   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
It is decent independent support such as yours that is a stalwart of the industry. Team Alligator is definitely worth the purchase, much more so than it's predecessor. There is a flight patch already from ZeroG. You can find it at http://ka52.sim-arena.com/ I hope you produce one also. After all it is the ability to choose that improves a sim all around. I would forego the removal of the pregame movie in KA52. It is the best I have ever seen. It is not long but the effects and sounds, particularly the impact of cannon shells, is well done. Besides, one can always bypass with the ESC key. Where were you planning on posting the patches? I am interested as I have Team Apache.
Posts: 48 | From: 5th Special Forces Ft Campbell Ky | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Burner*
Member
Member # 349

posted 04-08-2000 08:28 PM     Profile for Burner*     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I'm very interested in your patch and would be interested in helping you test it if you wanted me too. Email me at [email protected]

------------------
"Fighter pilots make movies. Attack pilots make shitty movies. And don't believe those mudmovers who try to talk about history, either. Without the air-to-air stuff, I'll tell ya who's history" -Quote From www.f-16.net


Posts: 53 | From: angels 28 | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
Shadowcat
unregistered

posted 04-08-2000 11:14 PM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
It sounds like you've done some superb work there, Jont!

Please do post further information; I look forward to reading more about it.


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Jont
unregistered

posted 04-09-2000 08:37 AM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
OK, glad to see some interest - so here we go

A few things first:

1/ the patches are applied with a few 'hacks' to the exe
- and as stated in my earlier post I've only worked out
the locations for one particular exe ie: APACHE.EXE - Note
that there are 5 separate exes, each specific to alternate
graphics cards/modes - my patch is for the 'Direct 3D Primary
Hardware' version (APACHE.EXE).
Don't try to apply the patches to the other exes unless you
can work out the correct locations. (they'll be close - but
not easily identifyable).

2/ the patches do not add anything to the FM, just eliminate some
of the anomalies by zeroising/reducing some calcs. This comes
at a cost - you do lose some stability (good) - but you also
lose some raw power (ie: you need more throttle to climb and
it's a lot easier to get slammed into the ground if you descend
too rapidly).

3/ I'm not a real heli pilot, nor an aerodynamicist, I do not claim
that this FM is real or even close to real - it does, though,
stop the heli *blatently* disobeying some fundamental laws of
physics (rotor disc tilted at 15 degrees - nothing happens).
Overall, my main gripe of my FM is that the heli is a bit
'dancey' if you see what I mean. Also there's an annoying
slight tail wiggle and nodding at high speed flight. However
I'm happy with the result - I enjoy flying low and slow -
especially down the roads in the towns - and landing in the
building courtyards etc. (sad person).

4/ you can apply any or all of the patches independently - though
I found that all of them together makes for a nice balance.

We have to patch the exe - somehow. I suggest you keep a back-up
copy of the exe for safe keeping.

You can either patch the exe manually with a hex editor (if you
have one or can find one) or use a utility to apply the patches
for you - this is my prefered method. I use a freeware utility
called 'LGPATCH' which I found on the web:
http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Lab/6606/utility.htm

This util takes a kinda 'script' file which specifies what file
to patch, where in the file to patch and what bytes *should* be
there at the moment and what to replace them with. If the bytes
don't match then the util stops saying so - in which case none
of the patches will have been applied and no damage is done.

As i don't know how to upload a file to the forum, i shall present
the text of this 'script' file here (below) - if patching by
some other means then you ought to be able to see what needs
patching by reading this text. Lines starting with # are only
'print' statements - I'm using them mostly for commenting.

***************************************************************
LGPATCH
Upgrade Apache
APACHE.EXE
2006016
#
#Skip opening movies
#(rtl=49e609, JE-->JMP)
Ofs:9da09
Old:74
New:eb
#Ok.
#
#Reduction/Elimination of excessive Damping (damping in x/y/z space)
#(rtl=4602b0, PUSH 0.001-->PUSH 0.0)
# we could try just lower values, rather than just 0...
# change the 3A-->39: PUSH 0.00025 (ie: New:68 6F 12 83 39)
# change the 3A-->38: PUSH 0.0000625 (ie: New:68 6F 12 83 38)
# change the 3A-->37: PUSH 0.000015625 i think (ie: New:68 6F 12 83 37)
Ofs:5F6B0
Old:68 6F 12 83 3A
New:68 00 00 00 00
#Ok.
#
#More Elimination of Damping (damping in pitch/roll)
#(rtl=460646, mov ecx, dwprd ptr [eax+08] --> xor ecx,ecx/nop)
Ofs:5FF46
Old:8B 48 08
New:33 C9 90
#Ok.
#
#Eliminate 'Lurch'
#(I think this patch has an adverse side affect on high speed flight - but can't remember what)
#(rtl=45fe62, a bunch of stuff-->xor edx,edx/nop/nop/nop/nop/nop/nop/nop/nop/nop/nop)
Ofs:5F262
Old:8B D0 C1 E2 0C 2B D0 D1 E2 C1 FA 10
New:33 D2 90 90 90 90 90 90 90 90 90 90
#Ok.
#
#Reduce low end control severity (change log/non-linear table)
#(rtl=46386d, lea eax, dword ptr [ edx + 0100h ] --> ...[ edx + 0010h ])
#or some other value (between 0010h...0100h)
Ofs:62C6D
Old:8D 82 00 01 00 00
New:8D 82 10 00 00 00
#Ok.
#
#All done.
***************************************************************

Save all the text (between the ****) as a file in your main
apache directory (where the exe is) with any filename you like
(mine's called UPGRADE.PAT). Also place the LGPATCH util in the
same dir and run it from a DOS prompt in that dir eg:
c:\Apache>LGPATCH UPGRADE.PAT<cr>

You can also make a DOWNGRADE.PAT file by swapping the contents
of the 'Old:' & 'New:' lines. This way you can undo the changes
and maybe try other values.

(NOTE: for info, in the above file, 'rtl' means run-time-location
rather than offset in file ('Ofs:') - this is only useful for
anyone wishing to hack with a debugger)

If you get the 'Bytes don't match' message then it's likely we're
working with different exes - let me know.

If I've missed anything or anyone requires more help then I'll be happy
to provide more info through this forum.

Sorry if it seems a bit complicated. Feedback would be most welcome,
I'll try and visit the forum as frequently as I can.

Good luck, have fun. (go shoot Elvis - quick combat - Columbia - in the town)

Cheers
Jont

P.S. I'm in the UK - but I think my personal timezone is somewhere
in the middle of the Atlantic (i stay up late! - but you probably
guessed that)


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Shadowcat
unregistered

posted 04-11-2000 05:11 AM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hi Jont,

Sorry to say so, but I guess we have different APACHE.exe files :/

Using LGPATCH as suggested, I get:

[...]
Skip opening movies
(rtl=49e609, JE-->JMP)
Bytes not match!!!


Okay, I've found the game box (I knew I kept all these boxes for a reason :) and it decidedly looks as if I have the U.S. release (I'm in New Zealand, and you can never be certain which version of something you have.)

The "not for distribution in the European Union" sticker was the giveaway :)

Durn :/


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Jont
unregistered

posted 04-11-2000 08:20 AM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hatchet,

darn - I was looking forward to someone else's opinion. Never mind.

Maybe - as I didn't know there was a 'US'
version - and there's likely many out there using *that* version- it might be worth someone (maybe you?) e-mailing me your exe
so I can find the correct patch locations?

That's not pirating - is it? - I do own the game after all. (I wonder what Keyser Soze's opinion on that would be?)

Anyway, if you fancy trying it, my e-mail
address is:
[email protected]

(if you do, please zip it 1st)

thanks for trying anyway

jont


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Jont
unregistered

posted 04-11-2000 08:23 AM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Oops...
I meant Shadowcat - not Hatchet
in that last post.

sorry for any confusion

jont


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