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Tips for Buying EarthBound

January 20th, 2013 | EarthBound, Hacking

The other day Lyrositor released a tool called CCScriptWriter, which extracts all the text from an EarthBound ROM and converts it to CCScript-formatted code.

If none of that makes any sense to you, here’s a quick explanation:

  • EarthBound’s script is really complicated and very hard to dump
  • Until now, the only way to edit EarthBound’s existing text was with PK Hack, but it was very complicated and sometimes buggy
  • A tool called CCScript was created to make it easier to manipulate EarthBound’s text
  • But EarthBound’s script was so complicated that it was never fully dumped or made available to edit with CCScript
  • Lyrositor was like, “Man, someone needs to do this” and then made CCScriptWriter, which dumps the script out of the EarthBound ROM and makes it compatible with CCScript

This tool is a big deal and will mean several big things:

  • It’ll be easier to make more complicated EarthBound hacks, like adding new stuff to the game, for example
  • This makes it infinitely easier to translate EarthBound into other languages. The only real remaining step would be to expand EarthBound’s font to include new letters, which I tried many years ago but it’s better to redo it from scratch now and make it work with CoilSnake. Hopefully someone will do this sometime

Anyway, check out CCScriptWriter here!

If you’ve ever wanted to mess around with EarthBound hacking but it always intimidated you, these are some good times to be a fan. The tools that exist now are so, so much nicer than in the old days. And even if you’re not interesting in hacking the game, I’m sure we’ll see more and more interesting hacks in the future!


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16 Comments to EarthBound Script Extraction Tool

Scapetti said on Jan. 20, 2013

NOW will you make an uncensored Earthbound patch? With Pokey called Porky? 🙂 Pleeeaaasseeeeeeee

TheZunar123 said on Jan. 20, 2013

Hey Mato, since we have this tool now, do you think it would be cool if we inserted the text we translate in our translation into EarthBound, that way we have a retranslated and uncensored version?

Ness1985 said on Jan. 20, 2013

Pleeeease, and have all the original stuff. For example, cross on the hospitals, Ness naked in Magicant, uncensored and more realistic dialogue, changing the pencil and eraser to the octopus and doll.

Ness1985 said on Jan. 20, 2013

Oh, and let’s not forget changing everyones text about the caffeine buzz to alcohol, changing “Cafe” back to “Bar”

gwalms said on Jan. 20, 2013

Why change the pencil? That wasn’t censorship. The original joke just didn’t work in English.

TheZunar123 said on Jan. 20, 2013

@Ness1985 We plan to do all those changes except the pencil and eraser, because of the reason gwamls stated above. We’re going to try and retain jokes as much as possible, so some things may not be changed (example: The guy in Onett who asks you about the Beetles song; the question is different in Japanese, but it makes no sense in English, so we’re keeping the EarthBound line for that)

Ness1985 said on Jan. 20, 2013

@TheZunar123 That’s fine, other things would be nice 😛

tintinophile691 said on Jan. 20, 2013

@TheZunar123: Hey, TheZunar, you might be interested in using this patch as a springboard to begin with.


It’s already done up to the Dusty Dunes Desert.

TheZunar123 said on Jan. 20, 2013

@tintinophile691: The problem with building off a patch is that CoilSnake was not configured to extract data from patched roms, only clean ones. I’ll see if it will work, but I may have to start from scratch, since that patch was made using PK Hack.

BusterTheFox said on Jan. 20, 2013

Aw, cool! I remember hearing about how things were tough for EB hacking thanks to the weird text system (in fact, I’ve read a LOT about the subject, and no one’s ever had anything terribly good to say about it. xD). As soon as I saw this on Twitter, I knew something great had just happened for the fan community.

The only hack I’ve played through so far was that recent Christmas one, Holiday Hex. If making a short thing like that isn’t so hard to do hacking-wise, I might give it a try. I have a tiny bit of experience with ROM hacking already, for Pokémon Blue Version anyway…

I’m lead to believe, however, that I need to know this CCScript language in order to use the tool, is that right?

boundearth said on Jan. 21, 2013


Well you don’t have to learn CCScript language but it definitely makes life a lot easier than having to learn all the control codes and going into text editor to apply them. CCScript is a lot more user friendly and it’s actually not that hard to learn.

Here’s where I learnt the basics of CCScript:

Here are all the command references:

As for me, I made a lot of hacks but never actually released them in the PK HACK forums; this is mainly because I wasn’t satisfied with them and my hacks were nothing in comparison to others. I need to learn more about how to make cut-scenes, like how Hallows End does it. Eventually, though, I plan on making a mini hack much like Holiday Hex.

Mr. Tenda said on Jan. 22, 2013

^^ If you guys have questions, feel free to post on the PK Hack forums… lots of friendly people there who want to help others. 🙂

spidey101 said on Jan. 22, 2013

@Tomato Does this mean someone can fully translate most of Mother 2 in M1+2???????

Mato said on Jan. 23, 2013

No, that’s something completely different.

Anonymous said on Jan. 28, 2013

darns. i got excited there for a minute.

TragicManner said on Jan. 30, 2013


Tomato, you should know how much I have been struggling with Earthbound’s script. I drop into pkhax every now and then to see if someone managed to do this, but wow, now it’s actually happening!

I suppose I’ll have fun trying this out and helping to find any issues.


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