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Old 30 July 2011, 16:57   #1
Shatterhand
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Working Sierra Soccer

Hi.

Back at the 90s I had a version of Sierra Soccer which crashed with a guru randomly.. it would always happen no matter what you did.

I recently downloaded the game from Planet Emulation... I am nearly sure it's not the same version I had, as the one I had, had a cracktro, and this one has none.

The problem is still there ,the game gurus after a while.

Anyone knows if there's a 100% working version of this? Is this the case of a bad crack, or is the game badly programmed?
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Old 30 July 2011, 22:22   #2
Arnie
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Have a look here http://www.thegamearchives.com/?val=..._4_17_0_19_6_0
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Old 31 July 2011, 00:44   #3
Shatterhand
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the idea is that I download all the versions and find out if any of them is working?

Not that I am complaining
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Old 07 September 2011, 01:19   #4
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Hi Shatterhand, I am the author of Sierra Soccer. I wrote some very sneaky anti-pirate code to deliberately rebooted the computer after a certain amount of gameplay so it allowed people to play the game, but not to get all the way to the finals so it sounds like whoever pirated the game did not spot my anti-piracy devices well enough.
I'm glad you enjoyed the game though and are playing it again. I hope you had success in finding a working version, sadly I do not have a working version to give away.
 
Old 07 September 2011, 10:35   #5
Gordon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stunts View Post
Hi Shatterhand, I am the author of Sierra Soccer. I wrote some very sneaky anti-pirate code to deliberately rebooted the computer after a certain amount of gameplay so it allowed people to play the game, but not to get all the way to the finals so it sounds like whoever pirated the game did not spot my anti-piracy devices well enough.
I'm glad you enjoyed the game though and are playing it again. I hope you had success in finding a working version, sadly I do not have a working version to give away.
Because of you i have never experienced England wining the world cup

Are you saying no one can EVER crack this to work properly?
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Old 07 September 2011, 15:30   #6
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Are you saying no one can EVER crack this to work properly?
I'm sure if that is the case it'll be rectified by this site!
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Old 07 September 2011, 17:31   #7
synchro
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Hi Shatterhand, I am the author of Sierra Soccer
Welcome !!

Its great to have an author of an actual chart topping game here with a great attitude amiga emulation and his game...

I would like to say thank you for creating games for the Amiga in its Heyday.
We do our best here to insure people like you and your games are not forgotten...Its not about piracy for us in this day and age but preservation.

Did you have a hand in any other games ??
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Old 08 September 2011, 00:33   #8
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Because of you i have never experienced England wining the world cup

Are you saying no one can EVER crack this to work properly?
Nope, it can certainly be cracked if you understand how it works.

So what I did was to put a CRC check around the code to display the security flag screen when the game booted. If that code was tampered with (which a hacker would have circumnavigated) I littered my code (and graphic data) with calls to check on that CRC throughout the game. If it found the CRC was incorrect, I set a flag and if that was set, I randomly rebooted some time into the game. It was very simple (although creating a perfect CRC when the code could be loaded into anywhere in memory) wasn't easy, but once it worked, it was almost undetectable because it was silent.

One suggestion though, the security system for the game was to find a flag on the corner of the game manual and enter it 3 times. Would it not be simpler to scan the manual or copy the flags and page numbers and use a proper original ISO'ed version of the game ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by synchro View Post
Welcome !!

Its great to have an author of an actual chart topping game here with a great attitude amiga emulation and his game...

I would like to say thank you for creating games for the Amiga in its Heyday.
We do our best here to insure people like you and your games are not forgotten...Its not about piracy for us in this day and age but preservation.

Did you have a hand in any other games ??
Thank you.

Absolutely, I agree its not piracy

Not on the Amiga, no. Sierra Soccer was my only game for that platform but I'd written many games before it and plenty after and I continue to do so today.

Last edited by TCD; 08 September 2011 at 01:44.
 
Old 08 September 2011, 08:44   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stunts View Post
Hi Shatterhand, I am the author of Sierra Soccer. I wrote some very sneaky anti-pirate code to deliberately rebooted the computer after a certain amount of gameplay so it allowed people to play the game, but not to get all the way to the finals so it sounds like whoever pirated the game did not spot my anti-piracy devices well enough.
I'm glad you enjoyed the game though and are playing it again. I hope you had success in finding a working version, sadly I do not have a working version to give away.
Great to have you here stunts.
Thanks for writing Sierra Soccer, I really enjoyed playing it, totally cool football game. Similar as Gordon said I had only cracked version of game (shame on me) that rebooted randomly.
Last time when I tries the whdload version would also reboot randomly. Hope that someday a working version would be found.
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Old 08 September 2011, 13:41   #10
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I'll take this one on chaps, expect a 100% version later on today
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Old 08 September 2011, 15:31   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon View Post
Are you saying no one can EVER crack this to work properly?
Each and any protection can be cracked, there's no such thing as "uncrackable protection".



Quote:
Originally Posted by stunts View Post
It was very simple (although creating a perfect CRC when the code could be loaded into anywhere in memory) wasn't easy,
I only had a quick look but I doubt that your checksum check works correctly since you used the normal move/eor approach and the code you check is not 100% pc-relative which means the checksum value changes whenever the code is relocated.

If you had made the protection code 100% pc-relative, adding a 100% reliable checksum check would have been very simple.


Quote:
but once it worked, it was almost undetectable because it was silent.
Any good cracker checks the code for checksum checks and in your code there is one very suspicious thing to be found right at the beginning, in your checksum routine you directly access the beginning of the executable = not exactly hard to detect that something fishy is going on.

Quote:
Would it not be simpler to scan the manual or copy the flags and page numbers and use a proper original ISO'ed version of the game ?
Where's the fun then?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Galahad/FLT View Post
I'll take this one on chaps, expect a 100% version later on today
Have fun, what I saw so far didn't look particularly hard to crack. Then again, I only had a quick glance at the code.





Edit: this following was once in a separate post but a mod here thought it's nice to silently merge the posts...
So the text below was written almost 2 hours after my original post:


Quote:
Originally Posted by StingRay View Post
I only had a quick look but I doubt that your checksum check works correctly
Checked now and the routine works correctly. Interesting way to work around the problem with the non-relocatable code. Anyway, the protection itself is nothing special at all, sorry, I like the way you tried to obfuscate the reset though.

Last edited by StingRay; 08 September 2011 at 15:50. Reason: ...
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Old 08 September 2011, 15:59   #12
synchro
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Have fun, what I saw so far didn't look particularly hard to crack. Then again, I only had a quick glance at the code.
I think now that stunts has told us what to look for it should not be a problem.....But years ago no one was looking for it...Once the crackers got through the general copy protection they probably thought that was it..

Craft one Stunts
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Old 08 September 2011, 19:04   #13
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I think now that stunts has told us what to look for it should not be a problem.....
It would not have been a problem either if he hadn't told anything, see my post above for a description. The checksum check is quite easy to spot.

Quote:
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But years ago no one was looking for it...Once the crackers got through the general copy protection they probably thought that was it..
That doesn't mean that the protection is any good (it is, as said, nothing special at all), back in the day it was all about speed which resulted in some half/non-working cracks.
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Old 08 September 2011, 19:55   #14
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Sierra Soccer was my only game for that platform but I'd written many games before it and plenty after and I continue to do so today.
I had a look at your personal website linked to from www.mobygames.com and that's an impressive lineup of games! It seems writing games never gets boring.
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Old 09 September 2011, 07:40   #15
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I'll take this one on chaps, expect a 100% version later on today
Cool
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Old 09 September 2011, 15:50   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stunts View Post
Hi Shatterhand, I am the author of Sierra Soccer. I wrote some very sneaky anti-pirate code to deliberately rebooted the computer after a certain amount of gameplay so it allowed people to play the game, but not to get all the way to the finals so it sounds like whoever pirated the game did not spot my anti-piracy devices well enough.
I'm glad you enjoyed the game though and are playing it again. I hope you had success in finding a working version, sadly I do not have a working version to give away.
I have small question.
All files from disk are used by game or not?
Some years ago I decoded all files from this game to rip the music, but I can't decode one file from first disk, if I remember right. I can't found access to this file. For me this is simple "fake" file (no empty space on disk for cracktro etc), but maybe this file is used by game?
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Old 09 September 2011, 15:58   #17
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Each and any protection can be cracked, there's no such thing as "uncrackable protection".
All protection can be cracked, maybe except "Dämonenburg" (Demon Castle).
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Old 09 September 2011, 16:14   #18
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All protection can be cracked, maybe except "Dämonenburg" (Demon Castle).
http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?...t=Demon+Castle
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Old 10 September 2011, 13:06   #19
stunts
 
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I have small question.
All files from disk are used by game or not?
Some years ago I decoded all files from this game to rip the music, but I can't decode one file from first disk, if I remember right. I can't found access to this file. For me this is simple "fake" file (no empty space on disk for cracktro etc), but maybe this file is used by game?
The first disk is irrelevant, you could run the game just using disk 2 from recollection.

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Originally Posted by Leffmann View Post
I had a look at your personal website linked to from www.mobygames.com and that's an impressive lineup of games! It seems writing games never gets boring.
Thank you

Quote:
Originally Posted by StingRay View Post
It would not have been a problem either if he hadn't told anything, see my post above for a description. The checksum check is quite easy to spot.



That doesn't mean that the protection is any good (it is, as said, nothing special at all), back in the day it was all about speed which resulted in some half/non-working cracks.
You are a bit of a charmer, StingRay

Last edited by Graham Humphrey; 10 September 2011 at 15:20. Reason: Back-to-back posts merged
 
Old 10 September 2011, 13:23   #20
StingRay
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You are a bit of a charmer, StingRay
I just posted the truth, often the coder of a protection thinks that it is much better than it really is. But, contrary to the protection code, I liked the game back in the day, it was one of the better football games.
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