Wednesday, July 6, 2011

SSF4AE PC Moveset Swap Tutorial

Thanks to Capcom's decision to forego emz containers and their associated headaches, moveset swaps are extremely easy to do now and they're not plagued by the "monkeyface" problem we all know so well.

Here's how you do it:
Step 1: Make a backup of your AE installation. If you mess something up, this will save you a lot of time, I promise.

Step 2: Pick 2 characters: 1 whose moveset we'll be taking (the donor) and 1 who will be receiving those moves (the recipient). For this example, I will use Hakan as the donor and Ryu as the recipient (i.e., Ryu with Hakan's moveset).

Step 3: Go to the resource/battle/chara directory and find your donor's folder, in this case HKN. In this folder, copy all of the files from down to HKN.vfx.ttex.emz EXCEPT for HKN.fce.ema and copy them somewhere (a working folder where we have write permissions is appropriate).

Step 4: Rename all of those files we just copied to match our recipient's character prefix, in this case RYU. Now, go back to resource/battle/chara and copy them into our recipient's folder, overwriting the ones that are already there (it's cool, you backed everything up anyway, right? Right??).

Step 5: Now, this is the key step: navigate to your donor's "latest" moveset files, which are located in dlc/03_character_free/battle/regulation/latest/ for normal characters (I'll update this post with the AE character's locations when I get home). Take the donor's bac and bcm files, in this case HKN.bac and HKN.bcm, copy them to our working directory and rename them to our recipient's character prefix.

Step 6: Finally, we take our renamed bac and bcm files and drop them into our recipient's folder in dlc/03_character_free/battle/regulation/latest/ (assuming they're a normal character and not AE-specific), overwriting what's there.

That's it. All done!

I'm going to explain a little bit about what we've just done, so read over it if you're interested:

The actual moves and animations are stored in the .bac and .bcm files, which were previously components of the *.cmn.emz bundles in vanilla SF4. When they were bundled, we had to open the entire bundle in a hex editor and find the desired files and names to edit manually. However, since Capcom stopped using the bundles, we can just rename the files and be done with it.

Now, you'll notice in step 3 we omitted the *.fce.ema file, which contains the character's face animation data. By doing so, we've let Ryu--our recipient--keep his original face animation data, thus avoiding the monkeyface for the most part.

Last, I wanted to mention the various revisions of moveset files included in the AE installation. The ones included in the resource/battle/chara directory are the regular, non-AE movesets, which are superseded by the ones located in dlc/03_character_free/battle/regulation/latest/. However, during the challenges/trials, the game reverts to using the SSF4 movesets, which access the resource/battle/chara ones.


Anonymous said...

hi Hunter K. thank you for the AMAZING guide!!.

However, I will like to ask you, do you have problems using the super special (like Genei Jin) after move swap?

Because after i move swap the characters, all the moveset has changed, normal etc, even the ultra special.

But for some reason, i am unable to use any super special. Is there any solution to this?


karl said...

Yeah i get same problem fine until i do a super combo etc. Anyone got any ideas how to fix this cos its so dam close.

Hunter K. said...

Hmm. I haven't had this problem. Is this occurring on any character swaps or just Yun/Yang? I was fiddling around with E. Ryu > Juri swaps last night and could super (demon) just fine.

karl said...

Cammy and sakura, guy and Hibiki.
I know its going off the beaten track but any you guys know how to edit the subtitles had some good ideas for commical stoylines. I tried saving as i do when reskining (dxt1 or dxt5) but cant save modded subtitles.

Hunter K. said...

It should be the same process as editing any other DDS, but take the original one and open it with Nvidia's WTV utility to check which DXT compression you should use. Also, be sure whether it has/doesn't have mipmaps.

karl said...

Still havin probs but no matter early days, thanks for the advice.

Anonymous said...

hi Hunter K.

Thanks for your prompt reply.

I only have problems with Yun (donor) moves to other characters.

I swap Feilong moves to Makoto, it works fine, and i also able to use super. (have not try other characters)

By the way, i will like to check what these files does?


Apparently, in the foloder,

there is no such files.

Are both of these files necessary for moveset swap?

If so, i am unable to find these files for YUN.

is it possible one of these files content the Genei Jin commands?

Thanks you for your help.

Coolboy2011 said...

Thank you very much!

I swapped Ryu -> Chun Li, succeeded, everything's all right except the wired face in the battle opening.

I'll try more, so exciting!!!

Hunter K. said...

Hmmm, yeah, sounds like there's an issue with Genei Jin, specifically...

I have no idea what those files do, Anon. They weren't present in vanilla. I'll take a look and see what's up, though.

If you swap Juri's moves to other people, does her Genei Jin-type ultra work correctly?

Coolboy2011 said...

Hi Hunter K.

Thank you for your tutorial!

I'm having fun with swapping, and I've tried a lot since my last comment.

However, I still have a problem with the "monkey face" issue.

You see, everything works well during the fight, but at the opening animation scenes, and the closing animation scenes, also, when doing the ultra combos, the characters are having the "monkey faces".

Do you have this problem?

I wish I can get a reply from you to solve this.


Hunter K. said...

yeah, that happens. I won't go into why, but it's normal. You can get rid of it through a very tedious manual editing of the fce.ema file (open in a hex editor and overwrite x00s over anything related to 'face'), but that method also has the unfortunate side effect of essentially freezing the character's face completely (poker face). I much prefer the occasional monkeyface.

Coolboy2011 said...

@Hunter K

Thank you very much for your reply.

I'm very lazy, so I give up editing the hex text files.

However, another method just came to my mind, I tried, and succeeded.

While, I just copied ".bst" , ".nml.emb", and other costume files (.col.emb, .obj.emm) from the donor to the recipient, so controlling the recipient looks like controlling the donor character.

This method is easy enough for me, lol.


Anonymous said...

What happens online when you play the swapped character?
Cause I just asked someone if they saw my Ibuki with an Akuma moveset on their screen, but they told me that they only saw Ibuki doing her normal moves.
Although on my screen, I saw my Ibuki doing Akuma moves. So I'm a little confused, whats really happening.

Hunter K. said...

Yes, modding of any sort isn't visible to the other player online because the game doesn't send that kind of information to the other client. I'm surprised you were even able to play online with a moveswap, actually. Usually the game desyncs and breaks the connection.

GeForceFX said...

Are there any news on Yun/Yan (ultra) monkey face issue?
I'd really love to replace that bastard with something else, but the monkey face is a deal breaker ;_;

DarkSoul said...

Is this guide compitable with the tool MonkeyFix?

Hunter K. said...

Yeah, it should be. Just do the steps and then run the tool to fix the cinematic face animations, I think.

DarkSoul said...

Yeah, it worked. Perhaps you should include that in your tutorial?

Anonymous said...

The guy who made ultras with the camera angel, do you know how he did?
He refuse to respond.

Hunter K. said...

I believe it was all done through Dantarion et al's Ono! Editor tool. I believe that was in the 'scripts' part of the tool.

Anonymous said...

Thanks. I will check it out.
Btw I was kinda unclear about what I wanted plus there was a typo which made it senseless.
I was referring to these:
Thats the one you was talking about to, right?

Hunter K. said...

oooooh, I see what you mean now. I didn't get it before.

To make that video, he replaced the bac but not the bcm (I think... maybe got it backward). This gives a character swapped moves but keeps their original scripts(?). Regardless, I'm fairly sure it was done entirely through file replacement, without messing around in Ono!

You may have to replace the character's original cam.ema, too, but I'm not sure about that.

Anonymous said...

Didn't work.
Thanks anyway!

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