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Forums > CSDb Entries > Release id #176410 : Propaganda List #1 2019
2019-04-01 23:22
Didi

Registered: Nov 2011
Posts: 448
Release id #176410 : Propaganda List #1 2019

Quite funny: If the coder is member of the releasing group and supplies the original, it gets no points here (example: The Age of Heroes). If the musician of the game is member in the releasing group, it's OK (example: Nono Pixie Preview 4). C'mon. Get real! Crackers have always used "connections" to get hand on the originals first. Usually you did not even ask for the source. You just respected that they had it first, point. The rule here is not thought through until end and does not respect tradition IMO.
 
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2019-04-08 15:21
Scan

Registered: Dec 2015
Posts: 110
Quoting Maxlide
Don't blame it on the scene but one the releasing group when a release is faulty.
There have always been groups who spent more time on their releases than others.
The trick is to be good and fast. I don't know about what group we are talking and I don't care but they surely need to check their Q department then.
During the heyday of the Commodore 64 scene people tend to release two versions. A quick one for the bbs' and a second and usually better one (in terms of trainers and size) for the snailmail releases.

And about your future products: a copy protection would be highly appreciated!

It's not just one group, but in general. Last time it was Excess, where they attached a doc viewer where you have to exit using run/stop, which got buffered and then because RoboZZle64 uses kernal routines to read out the keyboard it sees the keypress and immediately selects the first puzzle.

With the latest release I did not add copy protection (as I do want this game to be freely distributed) but I added some detection to see if an intro has been attached in front of it. I examined the cracks on the last 8 pages on CSDB if they shared a common ground and found one, and that I added to the behaviour of RoboZZle64. ROLE took the bait and released a flawed version, I'm curious how long it takes them to find out where their version differs in behaviour compared to the original and what I've done to make "cracking" this a little more difficult than it seems on the first glance. Or maybe some other cracking group will find out first and release a 100% version before ROLE. The game is on ;)

Tiny hint: Win.

Edit: O'Dog found and solved the culprit.
2019-04-08 21:21
Pitcher

Registered: Aug 2006
Posts: 61
Quote: Quoting Maxlide
Don't blame it on the scene but one the releasing group when a release is faulty.
There have always been groups who spent more time on their releases than others.
The trick is to be good and fast. I don't know about what group we are talking and I don't care but they surely need to check their Q department then.
During the heyday of the Commodore 64 scene people tend to release two versions. A quick one for the bbs' and a second and usually better one (in terms of trainers and size) for the snailmail releases.

And about your future products: a copy protection would be highly appreciated!

It's not just one group, but in general. Last time it was Excess, where they attached a doc viewer where you have to exit using run/stop, which got buffered and then because RoboZZle64 uses kernal routines to read out the keyboard it sees the keypress and immediately selects the first puzzle.

With the latest release I did not add copy protection (as I do want this game to be freely distributed) but I added some detection to see if an intro has been attached in front of it. I examined the cracks on the last 8 pages on CSDB if they shared a common ground and found one, and that I added to the behaviour of RoboZZle64. ROLE took the bait and released a flawed version, I'm curious how long it takes them to find out where their version differs in behaviour compared to the original and what I've done to make "cracking" this a little more difficult than it seems on the first glance. Or maybe some other cracking group will find out first and release a 100% version before ROLE. The game is on ;)

Tiny hint: Win.

Edit: O'Dog found and solved the culprit.


Nice, it would be good to see things like this coming up more frequently.
2019-04-08 22:05
Smasher

Registered: Feb 2003
Posts: 501
thumb up for Scan!
2019-04-08 22:17
cadaver

Registered: Feb 2002
Posts: 1144
Nice one! Though I'd be wary doing detections that could trigger also on a legit copy, depending on what the user has done before loading your game (e.g. zeropage state)
2019-04-08 23:14
TheRyk

Registered: Mar 2009
Posts: 1506
Yeah, it's indeed fun if coders bother doing some kind of protections. But what cadaver sez. And please don't overdo it (like Atwoods Studios some years ago), though :D
2019-04-08 23:57
AlexC

Registered: Jan 2008
Posts: 287
Quote: Nice one! Though I'd be wary doing detections that could trigger also on a legit copy, depending on what the user has done before loading your game (e.g. zeropage state)

It is easy to bypass this issue by doing cart releases of originals. Unless you check for stock kernal it should always work since startup state if pretty well known (ok, memory pattern may wary and you may in same cases mix up freezer memory configuration option with default memory pattern or the other way around triggering protection as an result).
2019-04-09 00:01
AlexC

Registered: Jan 2008
Posts: 287
Quote: Yeah, it's indeed fun if coders bother doing some kind of protections. But what cadaver sez. And please don't overdo it (like Atwoods Studios some years ago), though :D

Well, I guess Scan has still way to go as far as Exile/Audiogenic is considered as a comparison point ;)
2019-04-09 00:32
Scan

Registered: Dec 2015
Posts: 110
Quoting cadaver
Nice one! Though I'd be wary doing detections that could trigger also on a legit copy, depending on what the user has done before loading your game (e.g. zeropage state)

If I would do a commercial game I would not have included it, as it is indeed too fragile. I just added it to prove a point about the quality of some crack releases and that a few groups are too eager to be the first than to properly check their crack.

I tested whether $100 contains a value between $30 and $3A under various conditions (vanilla C64, using retro replay, using Dolphin Dos). After reboot it holds the 1st digit of basic bytes free (3) and when you load and list a directory it becomes the 1st digit of the amount of blocks free, so I assumed it should always be $30-$3a. Since Exomizer and Pucrunch (not Nucrunch by ChristopherJam, which I used to compress the most recent version) clobber the stack it was fairly easy to detect whether the game was tampered.

In the end I'm planning to release the game in source code format as poster child for KickC, so what's the point in protecting it anyway? ;)
2019-04-09 00:59
AlexC

Registered: Jan 2008
Posts: 287
Quote: Quoting cadaver
Nice one! Though I'd be wary doing detections that could trigger also on a legit copy, depending on what the user has done before loading your game (e.g. zeropage state)

If I would do a commercial game I would not have included it, as it is indeed too fragile. I just added it to prove a point about the quality of some crack releases and that a few groups are too eager to be the first than to properly check their crack.

I tested whether $100 contains a value between $30 and $3A under various conditions (vanilla C64, using retro replay, using Dolphin Dos). After reboot it holds the 1st digit of basic bytes free (3) and when you load and list a directory it becomes the 1st digit of the amount of blocks free, so I assumed it should always be $30-$3a. Since Exomizer and Pucrunch (not Nucrunch by ChristopherJam, which I used to compress the most recent version) clobber the stack it was fairly easy to detect whether the game was tampered.

In the end I'm planning to release the game in source code format as poster child for KickC, so what's the point in protecting it anyway? ;)


Now you've ruined all the fun for me to peek into you "protection scheme" releasing all those details ;). My trusty Trilogic Expert still does not work correctly on my U64 and that is the only C64 machine I have right now on my desk...
2019-04-09 01:08
Scan

Registered: Dec 2015
Posts: 110
Sorry to have spoiled all the fun. However, I did not test whether this works with an Expert cartridge enabled, so I'm curious if RoboZZle64 would work as intended. I assume it does, but then again, assumption is the mother of all fuckups. ;)
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