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 Forum index » Modding Central » Red Alert 2 Editing Forum
Is there any tutorial for gamemd editing?
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Iowa3
Vehicle Drone


Joined: 08 Aug 2013
Location: China

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:27 pm    Post subject:  Is there any tutorial for gamemd editing? Reply with quote

I can rarely find any resources for this editing. Does anyone know how to make this? Confused
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TAK02
Commander


Joined: 28 Jun 2015
Location: It was Damascus.

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HexEditor is the first step.
I hear HxD is good enough.

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Iowa3
Vehicle Drone


Joined: 08 Aug 2013
Location: China

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TAK02 wrote:
HexEditor is the first step.
I hear HxD is good enough.


Thanks, but, I want an introduction or a tutorial  to explain how gamemd works...
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CCHyper
Defense Minister


Joined: 07 Apr 2005

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gamemd.exe is an executable, just like every other executable. It is a compiled version of the Red Alert 2 : YR source code written in C++.

Your local University or College should have courses for studying Computer Science or Programming, they cover the basics of Assembly/Machine Code.

There is no "tutorial" or "introduction" for this.

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TAK02
Commander


Joined: 28 Jun 2015
Location: It was Damascus.

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CCHyper wrote:
Gamemd.exe is an executable, just like every other executable. It is a compiled version of the Red Alert 2 : YR source code written in C++.

Your local University or College should have courses for studying Computer Science or Programming, they cover the basics of Assembly/Machine Code.
If that's the case: how come you all (especially AlexB) can't get your hands on the source code for those games (unless I missed it?)? Is it locked behind a special cyphering?
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CCHyper
Defense Minister


Joined: 07 Apr 2005

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Becuase we studied various programming languages and techniques to be able to understand the x86 assembly language.

Would you ask a mechanic on a tutorial for how to completely take apart a car engine and put it together again in one day when you have not even grasped how a socket wrench works?

This is a topic that gets asked every now and then, and we just regurgitate the same response.

Go study programming and/or computer science and give it another shot in a few years, otherwise, feel free to take the engine apart with a spoon and let me know how you get on.

Anyhow, this topic needs moving...

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Mig Eater
Defense Minister


Joined: 13 Nov 2003
Location: Eindhoven

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Topic moved.

Alex doesn't have the source code (nor anyone else around here), he has just spent a long time studying programming languages so he knows how to reverse engineer the game's code a few small bits at a time.
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TAK02
Commander


Joined: 28 Jun 2015
Location: It was Damascus.

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I meant someone was saying the codes were lost and/or necessesary to modify the engine properly.

But what do I know.

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4StarGeneral
Commander


Joined: 14 Sep 2006
Location: Constant Flux

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It would certainly make it easier, but not necessary and EA most likely dumped the source ages ago.
A hex editor won't get you very far with this by itself. You can change values that already exist, but you can't do much else. What you will need is the knowledge to use a disassembler like IDA (there are freeware/abandonware tools too that would work fine with an x86 exe like RA2), the knowledge of both ASM and C#/C++, and the ability to compile them back into an .exe which for Ares project, iirc, is in the latest Visual Basic/Studio.

If you think you have the gist of both languages (say you've been using Cheat Engine for many years and can make pointers, scripts, etc.), start trying to figure it out on your own with IDA and VS, you may just be able to do it with a little help from Youtube and Google. Most people need to actually go to school for it though.
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Blade
Cyborg Commando


Joined: 23 Dec 2003

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The rumors are that the source for renegade and anything earlier is lost, TUC binaries supports that theory with binary hacks being used on the older titles while generals and above appear to be recompiled. Even if that wasn't the case though, EA don't seem disposed to providing it so the only solution is to try and reimplement either part or ideally all of the original binaries. Its not that the source is needed per se to modify things, but having it would save years  of work.

You pretty much need to know some x86 asm to understand the original and some C/C++ to write some replacement code, though it is possible to write it in assembly and relink it as well.

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