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Old 09 November 2013, 16:44   #1
pepsimaxman
 
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What depacker to use? Premier Manager II

Hello all the amiga people
There is a game called Premier Manager II and I like it very much!. I would like to make few minor changes. Change teams names of the clubs in european cups. Not more.
The teams names are stored in the file ClubData. I uploaded this file to this site upload server-my friend gave a recommendation to ask here and upload it.
This file is packed I think. Many years ago I depacked files in Sensible World of Soccer. Then change the names. And packed the files back again. I did this with RNC PRO PACK depacker. I tried the same with the file ClubData. But it did not work I tried to depack the file with many other depacker from aminet. With no luck.
Can you give me an advice which depacker to use to unpack the file?
I can edit another game, Premiere Manager III. But this game is slow on my old Amiga500.
Thanks everybody!!
 
Old 09 November 2013, 18:22   #2
acd2001
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I depacked the file with xfddecrunch.
To repack, i don't know.
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Old 09 November 2013, 19:15   #3
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xfdList and/or xfdScan - come also with the xfdmaster.lha - may give detailed information of the packer used with the ClubData file. cannot test myself atm
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Old 09 November 2013, 21:20   #4
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Thank YOU!

This is very nice utility, this xfdmaster!THANK YOU!!!
It decrunches PlayData too.

Emufan,
it writes Not crunched/linked. My fault maybe? Never mind. It uses this cruncher. xfdmaster uses it when doing the decrunching proces. Am i right?
I will test these files this night not crunched with Premiere Manager II. Maybe they will work. When will not work 100% then I donot know
Thanks for your help really!!!!
 
Old 10 November 2013, 12:51   #5
pepsimaxman
 
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Unfortunately no
The game crashes before it starts.
This two files must be crunched. Or PMII does not run.
 
Old 10 November 2013, 18:25   #6
emufan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepsimaxman View Post
Unfortunately no
The game crashes before it starts.
This two files must be crunched. Or PMII does not run.
some questions:
did you used xfdlist/xfdscan with the original ClubData file?
did you installed the game to harddrive?

Quote:
NTG-Cruncher V1.1
Decrunches files from the games Arnie, Mean Arenas (floppy & CD32) and the Premier Manager series. NTG stands for NiteTimeGames, the developers of these games.
if this information applies to PM2, then we need this cruncher. cannot say if it exists - i was hoping it uses some more common packer/cruncher.

Edit: i put "Premier.Manager.3-Editor.dms" into the zone. it included a500/a1200 version on that disk.
my hope is, it does work also with PM2. give it a try.

Edit: i managed to get PMII installed to hdd...
Quote:
> xfdList 1.05 (09.06.2001) © 1994-2001 Georg Hörmann, Dirk Stöcker

ClubData 22352 Not crunched/linked

> xfdDecrunch 1.9 (09.09.1999) © 1994-99 Georg Hörmann, Dirk Stöcker

Reading "ClubData" (22352 bytes)...
Decrunching "NiteTimeGames data cruncher" file...
Writing "ClubData" (134200 bytes)...
I cannot find any packer tool for this format. anyone with an idea?

Last edited by emufan; 11 November 2013 at 17:13.
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Old 09 January 2014, 15:25   #7
~Adma~
 
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Howdy!

How did you guys get on with this?

I'm looking to do something similar with the DOS version of Premier Manager 3, but i'm unsure where to start! I know this is an Amiga forum but i cannot find anywhere else on the net with any reference to someone trying to do edit the DAT files of Premier Manager, and it's something i've wanted to do for years now.

Can i use the same programs in Windows 7 to do the same job on the DOS version as you guys have done on the Amiga version?

Also... (i've emailed what i think is the current incarnation of Gremlin, asking nicely if the source code of the original PM3 is/could be made available but had no response as yet (not surprised)).

At a more advanced level i was looking to update the whole game (add more teams, playable nations etc) but i'd be happy with just editing the DAT files if possible!

Thanks in advance
 
Old 09 January 2014, 20:54   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Adma~ View Post
Howdy!

How did you guys get on with this?

I'm looking to do something similar with the DOS version of Premier Manager 3, but i'm unsure where to start! I know this is an Amiga forum but i cannot find anywhere else on the net with any reference to someone trying to do edit the DAT files of Premier Manager, and it's something i've wanted to do for years now.

Can i use the same programs in Windows 7 to do the same job on the DOS version as you guys have done on the Amiga version?

Also... (i've emailed what i think is the current incarnation of Gremlin, asking nicely if the source code of the original PM3 is/could be made available but had no response as yet (not surprised)).

At a more advanced level i was looking to update the whole game (add more teams, playable nations etc) but i'd be happy with just editing the DAT files if possible!

Thanks in advance
You'll have no luck there, all of the source code for all the Gremlin Interactive stuff was junked/skipped in 2006.

However, I know the name of the guy who actually converted Premier Manager for PC from the Amiga source code, I'm pretty sure its all in PC ASM, and his name is Terry Spencer, ex Vektor Grafix programmer, he was freelance for Gremlin at the time as was I when I wrote the Amiga version when the original programmer walked out on the Amiga and Megadrive version and never came back.

Terry might well have kept everything, I have no idea how to contact him, but Bill Pullen (of Bills Tomato Game fame and various other Psygnosis titles) knew him well.

As I had no tools for packing/depacking, I had to repack the files for the Amiga version myself as evidenced by the 'GLD!' headers on certain files.
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Old 09 July 2019, 10:27   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Galahad/FLT View Post
You'll have no luck there, all of the source code for all the Gremlin Interactive stuff was junked/skipped in 2006.

However, I know the name of the guy who actually converted Premier Manager for PC from the Amiga source code, I'm pretty sure its all in PC ASM, and his name is Terry Spencer, ex Vektor Grafix programmer, he was freelance for Gremlin at the time as was I when I wrote the Amiga version when the original programmer walked out on the Amiga and Megadrive version and never came back.

Terry might well have kept everything, I have no idea how to contact him, but Bill Pullen (of Bills Tomato Game fame and various other Psygnosis titles) knew him well.

As I had no tools for packing/depacking, I had to repack the files for the Amiga version myself as evidenced by the 'GLD!' headers on certain files.
How hard is it to work the other way that if you have the decrunch routine you can code the cruncher?
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Old 09 July 2019, 11:51   #10
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How hard is it to work the other way that if you have the decrunch routine you can code the cruncher?
Theres a guy on here that has done that for several amiga packers for a PC repack and repack solution.

He would be the best one to ask, but I'm pretty confident it's likely a derivative of a known packer like bytekiller.
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Old 09 July 2019, 21:03   #11
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How hard is it to work the other way that if you have the decrunch routine you can code the cruncher?
The followup question to that is, whether it has to pack something. If not (i.e. WHD install is all you need and there is no memory problems) one solution is to make compressor which packs literals only. this typically expands the data 1-5% but creates compatible bitstream.

Making such "compressor" is typically few hours work max (for someone who is proficient working with these things)

I have done such thing few times, it is not pretty, it wont always work but it is definitely fast & dirty option worth trying sometimes.

Making a real compressor harder, depending the actual algorithm used and how it good it has to be.
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Old 09 July 2019, 21:56   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by temisu View Post
The followup question to that is, whether it has to pack something. If not (i.e. WHD install is all you need and there is no memory problems) one solution is to make compressor which packs literals only. this typically expands the data 1-5% but creates compatible bitstream.

Making such "compressor" is typically few hours work max (for someone who is proficient working with these things)

I have done such thing few times, it is not pretty, it wont always work but it is definitely fast & dirty option worth trying sometimes.

Making a real compressor harder, depending the actual algorithm used and how it good it has to be.
This guy
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Old 15 July 2019, 10:08   #13
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Originally Posted by Galahad/FLT View Post
This guy
Hey this definitely falls into the "Lazy, but works!" category we were discussing in another thread about cracks. xD In practice most compression routines are some variant of RLE, LZ dictionary, and Huffman tree. It's just a pain in the ass trying to reverse-engineer it. In particular even if you can figure out the algorithm, there's no guarantee that your code is 100% compatible with the decompresser in the game code itself (e.g. bounds limits that the dev's compressor honors that yours won't necessarily). If it's just RLE + Huffman fixed tables it's pretty easy to write a new compressor though and just make sure you match the right RLE length limitations.

The magic happens if they're implementing a LZ system, in which case you can actually made the data smaller than the original dev using the exhaustive search functions form modern LZ implementations like in the 7zip codebase. It's just a nightmarish amount of work making sure the formats and limitations match.
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Old 15 July 2019, 11:17   #14
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Do you have to code a compatible packer? Isn't is (much) easier to pack the files using an existing packer, and patch the new decrunch routine into the DOS game.exe?

I'm certainly not up for trying to reverse engineer/code a compatible packing routine, but if you need assistance trying things this way I'd be happy to help :P
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