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Old 27 July 2015, 23:21   #1
ghosty777
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chips challenge crack issue

hi,
I wonder if anyone with a knowledge of cracking / assembler can help me with this one..

back in the day I tried to compile a cracked version of the commercial "chips challenge" onto a packdisk but was always unsuccessful because it seemed to access data on the disk which was hidden. it was cracked to dos (if I remember correctly) so I copied the files over to my comp disk and it never worked. I tried it again recently out of curiosity using a similar cracked version with the same result. I knew it was a bit of long shot, but I tried undeleting files but none were found.

now i'm no programmer but how was this done? could anyone help me break this hidden data protection? (just as a matter of interest for me now) thanks

there's an amiga dos version with all files hidden, but i'm referring to the tosec version with only some data files hidden, don't remember the exact file name at the moment.

thanks!

edit: the version I refer to was "Chip's Challenge (1990)(U.S. Gold)[cr QTX][v Lamer!4]" (I removed the virus though, lol :-)

Last edited by ghosty777; 27 July 2015 at 23:35.
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Old 28 July 2015, 01:12   #2
dlfrsilver
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chips challenge use a codewheel, and no protection on disk from memory.
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Old 28 July 2015, 01:27   #3
Galahad/FLT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlfrsilver View Post
chips challenge use a codewheel, and no protection on disk from memory.
Not what he was asking Denis

This is a typical Quartex crack. Basically in the early days of Quartex when Rob was cracking for them, they didn't bother with flashy intros, they either just had a hacked "Cracked by Quartex" in the game so it would display onscreen somewhere, or, if the game had room on the disk, they would utilise a simple CLI text screen.

Basically the game is originally a non-dos disk, i.e. it has no AmigaDOS file structure, all of the game 'files' are written to tracks on the disk, all the original has is a Volume name, but no specific AmigaDOS accessible files.

What Rob has done is simple enough. He has taken the original boot file, compacted it, put his crack routine in there to bypass the copy protection, and then found some space on the disk where there are no game files, and he has probably messed around with the disks bitmap to force the files to be stored where they won't interfere with the game files that are hidden.

Once the 'run' file has depacked, it then uses a custom track loader to load the required hidden files that are not accessible to AmigaDOS.

So copying the 'run' boot file wouldn't be enough, as it would be trying to load tracks with the hidden data.

They did the same thing with Hybris, RoboCop to name two others, and likely did it to a load of other games as well.
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Old 28 July 2015, 11:47   #4
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Indeed, i was not seeing things like this.
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Old 30 July 2015, 20:14   #5
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Galahad, thanks for taking the time to explain that, very informative & not something i'd have ever realized. again, really appreciate the detailed reply - thanks very much!
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