Brodeur30

Real-Time Clock in NHL '94 Genesis

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I managed to find out how to adjust the speed of the game clock in NHL '94 on Genesis. Attached is an original NHL '94 genesis bin file. (unedited except for the clock speed / penalty minutes hex adjustments)

Please test this out and provide me your reviews if you like it. It may take some getting used to the longer periods in NHL '94, but I'm hoping that you find this useful. I am trying to learn how to make other aspects of the game more realistic to make the game more playable when using a slower game clock speed.

Here is the hex address to adjust the speed of the clock :

015DEC:0AAA ;

0AAA is the original value, I lowered it to 03AA which slows down the clock to be close to real-time. I may have to fine tune this with the AA part of the code to get it exactly right ... but for now I'm using 03AA which is very close to real seconds. The 0A part of the code didn't appear to affect the game speed, however when I lowered the AA part of the code it appeared to slow down the game somewhat, though I'm not quite sure about that and will have to test this further.

Note : Initially the penalty clock did not slow down when I managed to slow down the game clock to real-time. I tried to find a way to slow down the penalty clock to real-time like I did the game clock, but was unable to really slow it down like I did the game clock. Perhaps that is possible but I haven't found that yet. However I found another way to get 2 minute penalties with the real-time clock by "increasing" the length of a penalty. (from "2 minutes" at triple speed to "6 minutes" at triple speed) So when there is a penalty, it will say each penalty is 6:00 long, but in reality it ends up only 2 minutes long. (2 minutes and about 3 seconds precisely.

From reading through this forum, apparently there are codes that adjust the length of each individual penalty type as well as an overall single code that adjusts the length of all the penalties.

Well I used the code below that adjusts all the penalties from 2 minutes to 6 minutes (at triple speed) to make penalties last 2 minutes in real-time by adjusting 01230C:4880 to 01230C:7406 with "06" being the number of minutes for each penalty that counts down at triple speed. Perhaps there is a way to slow down the speed of the penalties clock as well but for now this method is what I'm using to get essentially 2 minute penalties with the real-time game clock.

nhl94realtimer_actual2minpenalties.bin

 

Edited by Brodeur30
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I'm actually looking for the reverse, is it possible to have 5 minute periods but using a sped-up 20 minute clock on the game screen.

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I played a period of the Frozen Four 2007 mod just now to try it out (5min, no penalties, no offsides, no line changes).  I appreciate the effort to make the time scale more appropriate to real time, as I always feel like there's not enough time to mount a comeback if you're losing in standard NHL '94 time.  That being said, I feel like there's the opposite in this FF07 mod: there's too much time now.  In just one period against the computer (U. Maine v. UNH) I had a 4-0 lead...which isn't much different from what I could get in a standard-timed period.  I feel as though the speed of the skaters balanced well against the speed of the clock in standard time, but in a realistically-timed game the skating speed isn't scaled to reflect the time change.  I also don't feel like the gameplay is really any different from standard NHL '94 play; not being familiar with this FF07 mod, I wonder if the weight bug and C/B bug has been corrected or not.

I decided then to play a game with penalties and line changes on, and I think I see more of what you're getting at.  The biggest change is players getting fatigued more quickly and that affects their speed enough to offset the game clock change.  Where I see a problem is when you have a power play, the fatigue becomes too much of an issue as the penalty wears on, and then you have two teams of players sluggishly puttering around the ice, and then when the penalty expires both teams will be in a hurry to put out a fresh line.  I'll have to try a few more games to get a better feel for it, but the lack of extra lines/players to accommodate for this sluggishness is where it needs improvement.

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1 hour ago, The Dopefish said:

I played a period of the Frozen Four 2007 mod just now to try it out (5min, no penalties, no offsides, no line changes).  I appreciate the effort to make the time scale more appropriate to real time, as I always feel like there's not enough time to mount a comeback if you're losing in standard NHL '94 time.  That being said, I feel like there's the opposite in this FF07 mod: there's too much time now.  In just one period against the computer (U. Maine v. UNH) I had a 4-0 lead...which isn't much different from what I could get in a standard-timed period.  I feel as though the speed of the skaters balanced well against the speed of the clock in standard time, but in a realistically-timed game the skating speed isn't scaled to reflect the time change.  I also don't feel like the gameplay is really any different from standard NHL '94 play; not being familiar with this FF07 mod, I wonder if the weight bug and C/B bug has been corrected or not.

I decided then to play a game with penalties and line changes on, and I think I see more of what you're getting at.  The biggest change is players getting fatigued more quickly and that affects their speed enough to offset the game clock change.  Where I see a problem is when you have a power play, the fatigue becomes too much of an issue as the penalty wears on, and then you have two teams of players sluggishly puttering around the ice, and then when the penalty expires both teams will be in a hurry to put out a fresh line.  I'll have to try a few more games to get a better feel for it, but the lack of extra lines/players to accommodate for this sluggishness is where it needs improvement.

I forgot to mention that I had been using some game genie codes in conjunction with this to offset the fatigue issues in the FF07. You're right that fatigue is an issue on the FF07 mod. Without these codes, Fatigue bottoms out way too quickly in the FF07 mod, especially on power plays, regardless of how fast the clock is moving.

These are the game genie codes that I use when running the FF07 mod : (if you'd like the game genie codes I have those too)

1. Energy bars recharge twice as fast when your players are resting. Here is the hex addresses to edit : 007A1A:0012 (default is 007A1A:0007) 

2. The goalies can hold onto the puck 3x as long before the ref calls a face off. Only works when the goalie blocks a shot, not when you give him the puck. 01530E:01A4

3. Your goalie can hold onto the puck as long as you want without the ref calling a face off. 00D4C6:6002

Having the goalies being allowed to hold the puck longer works well with the real-time clock speed. Less stoppages, and more fluid gameplay.

I use the game genie codes, but for the FF07 mod it's probably a good idea to hex edit these into the bin especially the energy bars recharging faster one and goalies being allowed to hold on to the puck 3x longer before the referee blows the whistle. (you even get some funny goalie animations, i.e. head movements, that you don't normally see)

I would just like to add that the biggest problem I have with NHL '94 as opposed to NHLPA 93 is the inability to make line changes at any time. As you know can only make line changes when you hold down A on offense and that causes you to clear the puck. One of the things I want to learn how to do is to make an alternate 6 button control scheme in NHL '94 so one of the unused buttons can do line changes in NHL '94 like they work in NHLPA '93, allowing you to make line changes at any time on offense or defense, without having to clear the puck. This limit to line changes in NHL '94 also contributes to players fatiguing too quickly, even with the energy bars recharging code because you can't get players off the ice in situations that don't cause icings or opposing team fast breaks. With the energy bars recharging twice as fast for bench players code, if we can make the line changes work like in NHLPA '93 in NHL '94 then we will have completely repaired the fatigue issues in the FF07 mod. As it stands, when I want to make a line change in NHL '94 I usually skate behind my on goal and hold down A to activate line changes so an icing doesn't occur. That's an issue with NHL '94 that I'm hoping we can do away with by making line changes work like they do in NHLPA '93 with one of the unused buttons on a 6 button control scheme.

FYI I run NHL '94 / FF07 mod on a Genesis emulator (PicoDrive) on a PSP-3000. PicoDrive allows me to run .pat Game Genie codes, but I haven't been able to search for codes in real-time yet because I can't seem to get cwcheat to work with PicoDrive.

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I edited the 1st post with an updated version of the FF07 mod with real-time clock & with energy bars recharging twice as fast for bench players (I made it 0014 instead of 0012 so they recharge slightly faster than the 2x game genie code) Note : when there is a stoppage in action, like an icing, the energy bars appear to get an additional boost, this code only seems to affect how fast bench players energy recharge during continuous play. (which due to the fact that the A button is tied to line changes, many times trying to do a line change causes an icing and that stoppage) I hope we can find a solution in the form of a 6 button control scheme to make line changes occur like they do in NHLPA '93. That would really make these bench player energy charge codes work even better with manual line changes and the real-time clock.

I also edited the bin to allow goalies to hold the puck for about 7 seconds real-time before the referee blows the whistle. This seems like a long time, but when you are dealing with 2 minute real-time power plays and penalty kills it's not really that long. This can be adjusted of course if that's too long for you. I have it at 01530E:0230 in this version, simply lowering the 0230 in hex by 008C (or probably any increment) would lower that time if that's too long for you.

Basically what I'm trying to do here is to edit other aspects of the game to make the real-time clock more playable. If you have any other ideas on what we can do to make the FF07 more realistic with a real time clock, if you know any other codes that may be useful, lets talk about what we can do to.

As it stands, it seems that depending on which teams you play as you can get either low scoring games or high scoring games. Also at the moment I play with penalties on except for offsides. I've been playing as UNH and will play against Maine with this updated version of the FF07 mod on 20 minute periods real-time. If you play as Maine vs UNH with this bin it will be interesting to compare stats and goals. The Maine goalie seems to be pretty good, I'll keep you posted on how my matches are going with these settings. My goal is to play full 20 minute periods and have the amount of goals be reasonable. Obviously we are going to get ridiculous shots on goal compared to real-life, but that's more to do with how small the rink is in NHL '94 than anything lol. That's another mod I'd like to look into, make the rink bigger in NHL '94, which would lower shots on goal to more realistic levels!! There's really a lot of stuff we can research to make NHL '94 more realistic with a  real-time clock, and I am highly motivated to work on projects like this!

 

Edited by Brodeur30

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38 minutes ago, Brodeur30 said:

 I hope we can find a solution in the form of a 6 button control scheme to make line changes occur like they do in NHLPA '93.

 

Clockwise, along with Kaneda (or vice versa) hacked the game to include goalie control with the "Y" button.  As of now, no other developments have been made to use the X or Z buttons. 

If you have the technical degree to do this, here is the page where Kaneda describes how he hacked the Y button: http://gendev.spritesmind.net/page-nhl94.html

And here's Clockwise's goalie patch: http://pixelpuck.com/?p=1778

I'll try to test out your ROMs later tonight -- nice find!

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There's also a trick where you go behind your net and hold A to do a line change.  The puck will hit the back of the net and come back to your player, so you don't lose the puck. But an actual line changes button would be great.

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3 hours ago, smozoma said:

There's also a trick where you go behind your net and hold A to do a line change.  The puck will hit the back of the net and come back to your player, so you don't lose the puck. But an actual line changes button would be great.

That's what I had been doing to do line changes without losing possession. In the FF07 mod, as Dopefish mentioned, player energy was running out too fast, requiring you to have to make too many line changes by this method, disrupting the flow of the game. Thankfully, I found a topic on this forum where not only was there a player energy depletion rate for bench players code, but also a player energy depletion rate code for players on the ice. This is the one that apparently Inklings greatly increased causing players to run out of energy forcing you to do a lot of line changes.

It's at 010D42:0021. 0021 is the original NHL '94 value but it was 0062 in the FF07 mod. This allow players to stay on the ice in the FF07 mod without having to line changes as often.

Thanks for the link kingraph. I saw that there was a switch goalie mod button so you won't have to hold down B button. That's a great start to possibly adding more functions to the X or Z buttons. The first step would be to find the address that turns on and off the line change selection menu during gameplay, then try adding that to switch goalie mod in one of those unused buttons. Without cwcheat working in Picodrive on my PSP-3000 I may need to find another emulator to find codes like that for NHL '94 during gameplay. Another idea I had for the other unused button on a 6 button control scheme is possibly a speed burst button for offense when you have the puck. Yet another idea for an unused button that would be a button that allows you to pass the puck to a player but to retain control of the player who passed the puck. (sort of like a player lock) I've been able to get it to happen to an extent when holding A button and a teammate gets to the puck while the edit lines menu is up, at that point you will remain controlling a player who doesn't have the puck while on offense, to have a button that did that whenever could be useful. These are just some ideas of what we could try to do with 3 additional buttons.

I updated the FF07 again in the 1st post, slightly reduced bench energy player recovery rate from 0014 to 0010 and reduced on ice player energy depletion rate from 0062 (as was default in FF07 mod) to 0032. "NHL '94" Default 0021 was too low for FF07, as energy barely went down even after minutes on ice, so I can see why Inklings felt a need to increase it. The 1.3.6 bin seems to be a good balance with real-time clock, but it needs further testing. Finding a balance with these codes certainly does lessen the issues with manual line changes being tied to the A button in NHL '94 in the FF07 mod. If anyone wants to work on researching adding functions to unused control buttons I would be very interesting in doing so!

 

Edited by Brodeur30
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this thread is freaking AWESOME.

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On 1/11/2017 at 1:15 AM, Brodeur30 said:

Here is the hex address to adjust the speed of the clock :

015DEC:0AAA ;

0AAA is the original value, I lowered it to 03AA which slows down the clock to be close to real-time. I may have to fine tune this with the AA part of the code to get it exactly right ...

Assuming 0AAA is just a plain number, then I suspect that 0444 may give you real-time. The game clock runs 2.5x fast, and 0AAA / 2.5 = 0444...  

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2 hours ago, smozoma said:

Assuming 0AAA is just a plain number, then I suspect that 0444 may give you real-time. The game clock runs 2.5x fast, and 0AAA / 2.5 = 0444...  

You're right, 0444 does produce actual seconds. (I compared it to a digital clock) Thank you. To compensate, 01230C:7406 should be changed to 01230C:7405, to make each "2.5 speed" penalty be 5 minutes instead of 6. (with 0444 for game clock speed, for each minute real-time exactly 2:30 of penalty time elapses, so 2:30 + 2:30 = 5 minutes at 2.5 speed)

What I'm trying to do of course is to slow down the penalty clock speed to match the game clock at real-speed so we wouldn't need to increase penalty minutes with the other code to get 2 minute penalties like that. I am trying to actually find the "penalty minutes" clock speed code. Since the penalty clock speed is the same speed as the 2.5x original NHL '94 game clock, presumably it would be found by searching "0AAA" in the bin file of NHL '94. There are hundreds (not thousands) of 0AAA search results in hex memory found throughout the bin file, (and only two other 0AAA nearby the game speed clock which I have already tested) but if it's a plain number like the game speed code it would theoretically be 0AAA as well. I'm just going to try to change all those 0AAA to 0444 and go into a game and see if the penalty clock slows down to real-time. Maybe I'll stumble on to something else along the way. If I find it I'll be sure to post it.

 

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I changed all the 0AAA's to 0444 in the bin and it still didn't slow down the penalty minutes clock to real-time. That "penalty minutes code" 01230C could be a clue to finding that with 4880 as the original value and 740x with x being the penalty length.

I tried the individual penalty minute codes that had been found starting at offset 018ED0. Apparently those codes don't affect the actual length of the penalties, those (apparently) only change the number under "Minutes" that appear in the Penalty Summary in the Pause Menu.

So, unless there is something we can ascertain from the penalty minute length code 01230C, then slowing down the penalty clock speed to real-time may be more difficult to find. Maybe there is something nearby that code that is the penalty clock speed, or maybe changing the "74" part of the code to something else will slow it down. (I tried it and that didn't seem to work) 

In the event that we are unable to find the penalty minute clock speed code, we could possibly edit the artwork of the scoreboards to not show the penalty minutes when they come up on screen. In any event setting 01230C:7405 along with 015DEC:0444 accomplishes the feat of having a real-time clock with 2 minute penalties in NHL '94.

 

Edited by Brodeur30

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