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Tips for Buying EarthBound

January 12th, 2013 | EarthBound, Hacking


Recently someone asked if there’s a code to keep Buzz Buzz in your party. This is really simple to do if you know EarthBound hacking, so I made a Game Genie code for it:


After you leave Pokey’s house after Buzz Buzz’s death… you’ll still have Buzz Buzz with you!

Note: This code will work with most EarthBound ROMs out there, but for some headerless ROMs it won’t work. This probably won’t work on an actual cartridge either, but since I don’t have a Super NES Game Genie I can’t test it out.

I actually spent upwards of an hour trying to figure out how to make a code work for headerless ROMs/the actual cartridge, but with no luck. If any skilled hackers out there have free time, can you try and convert this to work with a headerless ROM? Basically the code changes the sequence [05 14 00 05 12 00] to [05 14 00 05 14 00]. I thought it’d be a snap to convert the code, but no luck…


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21 Comments to Keeping Buzz Buzz

Apple Kid said on Jan. 12, 2013

I am not sure if Buzz Buzz is worth messing around with my cart, but this is pretty cool.

gwalms said on Jan. 12, 2013

I was the one that asked! :P. Thanks! This doesn’t mess up the game later on? You can have all four heroes and Buzz Buzz?

Mato said on Jan. 12, 2013

You should be able to keep him just fine – unlike other characters Buzz Buzz’s presence is set by an event flag rather than normal party-related control codes. It’d be neat to find out for sure though!

KingMike said on Jan. 12, 2013

I haven’t tried it, but I think your code is faulty.

According to this site
your code decrypts to:
ROM address 05F596
Replacement value 14

(make the letter substitution, the for the address, convert the encrypted address to binary, then rearrange the bits in the order in the code, and convert the binary back to hex)

The correct code (just by looking for that hex string in the ROM, I didn’t actually test it) should be
ROM address C5F196 (since this is a HiROM game, you want to add $C00000 to the unheadered ROM address to get the SNES CPU address)
Replacement value 14
which should be Game Genie code
(but I did check ZSNES’ cheat viewer and at least ZSNES decoded the address right)
(after reversing the steps to decrypt the previous code)

Mato said on Jan. 12, 2013

Yeah, I spent a while trying to get the code to work on SNES9x but it only worked when I used the code I posted. It was really weird, maybe it’s a snes9x thing, I dunno.

HpBoost said on Jan. 12, 2013

I did this years ago. He’s quite helpful in battle for a while, but later he’s only useful for his shield abilities.

Earthbounder said on Jan. 12, 2013

Now make one for tony… O_O

gwalms said on Jan. 12, 2013

At what point does he become kinda useless? jw

Belle said on Jan. 12, 2013

Gotta love his trek to Winters, haha

Giygas999 said on Jan. 13, 2013

“This probably won’t work on an actual cartridge either”
New way to find out if you have a pirated cart. Pirates use ROMs. But they could use unheaded rom.

Radiostorm said on Jan. 13, 2013


His physical attacks probably peter out mid-game, but I imagine the free PSI shields would be useful all the way to the end. You basically wouldn’t have to worry about offensive PSI anymore.

EBisumaru said on Jan. 14, 2013

Wait, so you’re saying that emulators don’t take account of the header when applying Game Genie codes? That seems -really- odd. I’m quite sure I remember using EE64-54A1 (Disable end-of-block control code) and FB93-776F (walk through walls) on both the SNES hardware AND headered ROMs. Maybe SNES9x doesn’t apply them properly, but zSNES does?

Also… I believe the game might glitch if you have 2 regular NPCs (Teddy bear/Tony/Flying Man/Dungeon Man/etc.) as well. And I wouldn’t try to use a bike with it. Anyways you’ll probably get bored with it before that, so not a problem 😛

BusterTheFox said on Jan. 15, 2013

I feel like doing a complete playthrough with this code active. Would it work on an EarthBound Reshuffler hack? I’ve been playing through Earthbound-Past Smelly recently. xD With challenging enemies, too, which would make having Buzz Buzz a welcome accompaniment during the start of the game… You’d be surprise at the amount of perfectly-aligned hilarity got randomly generated into this particular hack. I mean, even the name! The original EarthBound stunk… But this one is PAST smelly! xD It was easy to do, so I Dropboxed it. O_O https://dl.dropbox.com/u/88667536/EarthBound-Past-Smelly.smc

I’m at Peaceful Rest Valley right now, so don’t think that Giant Step boss is impossible! xD Just wait for the EPs to run out of PP after a couple of Starstorm Omegas and then bash on the scorpion while ignoring the EPs… Aaaaaand that will make sense once you get that far. xD It’s really like playing Earthbound for the first time! Way more fun with challenging enemies, IMO.

Anyway, Buzz Buzz. Yeah.

Mato said on Jan. 15, 2013

Yeah, it should work on reshuffled versions of EarthBound just fine. Although Buzz Buzz might have crazy stats and/or actions.

DJMankiewicz said on Jan. 15, 2013

Pro Action codes tend to actually use the HEX so I tend to prefer that format. Otherwise I share your annoyance with headered codes. Headers are an annoying legacy from early ROM copiers that just clutter up the entire scene. I like BSNES and it’s vast tool to remove headers from all manner of existing ROMs. Ideally, I’d get a copier myself and dispense with finding ROMs entirely (I pretty much own every last game I’d have an interest in emulating).

HexploringUser said on Jan. 16, 2013

Why would a Game Genie code behave differently depending on whether a ROM has a header or not? The Game Genie was built to work with actual SNES Game Paks, and they decode to addresses in the SNES memory map, so if a Game Genie code will only work with a headered ROM and not also with a headerless ROM, then something is wrong with the emulator in which the code is inputted.

In ZSNES v1.51 and Snes9X v1.53, I tried inputting the Debug Menu code, which is composed of 3 parts, on both a headerless ROM and a headered ROM, and all 4 times, I was able to access the Debug Menu. The ROM I used has this sha256 hash when headerless: a8fe2226728002786d68c27ddddf0b90a894db52e4dfe268fdf72a68cae5f02e (remove any spaces or line feeds caused by the comment box), which was personally verified by byuu in his database and is probably also in No Intro’s database. The headered ROM I used is identical, except padded with 00’s at the beginning.

So improper handling of Game Genie codes would be in an earlier version of either emulator or a different emulator that is not higan/bsnes (such as SNEeSe). If the emulator is not the problem, then the headerless ROM that the Buzz Buzz code was tested against must differ in some way from the headered ROM that it was developed for. To test that, strip the header away and then compare their hashes (sha256 preferred if you want to compare with byuu’s hash).

P.S. I must agree with everyone who says that headers in ROMs are annoying and pointless. Every time I see a tool that works only on headered ROMs and not also on headerless ones, I sink a little. I have only ever gotten 1 program to work with header-magic (http://byuu.org/files/header-magic_v01.tar.bz2), and that program is the one that header-magic was originally created for: Lunar Magic, because header-magic requires the user to specify an entry point to work. The only exception I will tolerate is iNES headers (key word: tolerate).

BusterTheFox said on Jan. 17, 2013

Just FYI, I noticed that I basically just posted an Earthbound ROM in my comment up there. O_O I removed that, but I created a patch here:

Sorry ’bout that. Remember to patch a headered ROM, though!

gwalms said on Jan. 21, 2013

So.. anyone figure out how to make a code that works for both unheadered and headered roms? lol

Flami said on May. 22, 2013

It didn’t work for me, but maybe that’s because I’m using SNES9x to play EARTHBOUND.

Flami said on May. 22, 2013

The code posted by KingMike did work for me, however!


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