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Mechassault Region Free?


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#1 jkh13

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 06:29 PM

Hello, I have a japan region xbox (nstc J) and I am living in the uk, I want to mod it but I do not want to open the xbox. Today I managed to find a copy of mech assault PAL and tried to use it on the xbox but the game told me I cannot play it because of region. Isn't mech assault supposed to be the only softmod game that is region free or am I missing something?

Also is there a way to mod without opening the case? I have a mega x key.

Edited by jkh13, 06 November 2006 - 06:37 PM.


#2 Joshatdot

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 07:35 AM

As far as I know, the only PAL exploitable game is Splinter Cell.

#3 jkh13

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 08:07 AM

QUOTE(Joshatdot @ Nov 7 2006, 06:42 AM) View Post

As far as I know, the only PAL exploitable game is Splinter Cell.


PAL mechassault and 007 work for the exploits but is there any that work on a nstc j region box?


#4 Joshatdot

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Posted 08 November 2006 - 11:29 AM

they should, just get'em from usual places, and try it out, it wont hurt anything.

#5 krayzie

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Posted 08 November 2006 - 04:13 PM

mechassault is multi region (us ntsc and pal) but not region free. the exploit however will work fine on a ntsc-j mechassault just like 007

#6 jkh13

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 12:48 AM

Thanks alot for the answers, so basically I need to search for a nstc-j version of mechassault, 007 or splinter cell. Hopefully I can find one somewhere sad.gif

#7 blankoboy

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 09:31 AM

I have a JPN Xbox here in Tokyo and tried the following:

- Mech Assault (Singapore version) and would just freeze when attempting to load the save from campaign.
- Splinter Cell J simply refuses to see Krazie's save. Most likely due to it being for the US version. I wonder if there is any way to alter "Krayzie_SC-NTSC_Ndure_Installer_v1.1" so that the J version will acknowledge it and attempt to load it? uhh.gif

Edited by blankoboy, 01 April 2007 - 09:31 AM.


#8 dhalsim27

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Posted 04 April 2008 - 03:08 PM

QUOTE(krayzie @ Nov 9 2006, 12:49 AM) View Post

mechassault is multi region (us ntsc and pal) but not region free. the exploit however will work fine on a ntsc-j mechassault just like 007


This is untrue ("the exploit however will work fine on a ntsc-j mechassault").

I'd love to be proven wrong on this but I've tried quite a few times now (Japanese NTSC-J MechAssault on a Japanese Xbox console using NDURE) and, as others describe, it just hangs the Japanese Xbox. No dashboard is loaded, the music/sound in the background stops and the screen freezes.

Again, I'd really like to be proven wrong but it simply doesn't work as others have found out.

I also tried it on a US Xbox, but (as Krazie correctly mentioned elsewhere) The NTSC-J MechAssault won't load on a US Xbox and you get the standard formal message (can't play this disc/region) if you try it. You can transfer the gamesave fine but it won't play the NTSC-J MechAssault disc because of the restricted region.

In short, I want to determine whether or not Japanese xboxes can be softmodded at all without risking a hotswap or opening the case.

#9 krayzie

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 03:30 PM

QUOTE(dhalsim27 @ Apr 4 2008, 04:44 PM) View Post

, it just hangs the Japanese Xbox. No dashboard is loaded, the music/sound in the background stops and the screen freezes.

Are you sure this problem is not caused by a corrupted save (action replay card) or a patched version of mechassault. I never heard of a japanese xbox that coulnd't be softmodded by save game exploits. Actually the ntsc-j video mode is exactly the same as the ntsc-us one so a crashing exploit would be a strange reaction if the game simply has another region bit.

#10 dhalsim27

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 04:13 AM

QUOTE(krayzie @ Apr 6 2008, 12:06 AM) View Post

Are you sure this problem is not caused by a corrupted save (action replay card) or a patched version of mechassault. I never heard of a japanese xbox that coulnd't be softmodded by save game exploits. Actually the ntsc-j video mode is exactly the same as the ntsc-us one so a crashing exploit would be a strange reaction if the game simply has another region bit.


Thanks for the reply- happy to know I might be wrong! I will provide as much detail as I can of what happens when I try softmodding NTSC-J MA:

Re: each possibility:

Corrupted Save-
I have transferred the gamesave file many times using a homemade USB (I don't think I've ever seen an AR in stores in Japan for Xbox, so I soldered my own). I never got any specific message on the Xbox or AR software saying the file is corrupt/bad, and it transfered to USB stick seemingly fine and from USB stick to console fine-- However-- each time (even within the AR software on PC only, ie PC to USB stick), I noticed that the gamesave's block size would change ever so slightly by one, two or three blocks, eg 490 to 489 or 487 or 491. I was worried about this before and downgraded to an older version of AR software as I read on these forums that newer AR versions possibly corrupt large gamesaves. In any case, I have tried it with exactly eg 490 blocks (sometimes transfers w/exact number) and still same behavior (hangs). I imagine the difference in block size is just the fatx trying to divide evenly by 16? or at least, would let me know by checksum if something corrupted at some point along the way?
-However#2: I noticed that on each attempt, when I restart the Xbox and go back into Memory, the console lists TWO gamesaves- the one transferred, and a small one about 3 blocks usually. This always happens (and yes, I almost always deleted this second smaller file before each successive try, which made no difference). Maybe a linker file that's part of the exploit process? If it's a patched MA, reading these forums will tell you that you will get a specific error message saying it won't work (and not a hang/crash).

Patched MA-
From what I read on the forums, the Patched Versions will tell you by specific message that the gamesave "Run Linux" won't run. That does not happen with my NTSC-J MA (no message at all like that). Also, the screen that hangs actually displays the description as well, i.e. "Going Down Hard" with "Run Linux" selected. The only NTSC-J MA I know of is disc# MS02307J-L1 1B. Besides the one I bought recently, two other copies in local stores have only that disc# and same package number on the back of the case cover: 0203 PartNo. X09-36515. In my city, no stores sell Splinter Cell but I'll be on the lookout, however at least one other poster reported similar hang problem with SC-J.

Crashing Exploit-
The Hang (Freeze) is consistent w/ others that have posted in Xbox-Scene... I've been doing lots of searches this past week here and a couple people seem to have tried with Japanese Xbox/MA but it seems they didn't get modded at all until they tried hotswapping or installing a chip, presumably- in any case they provided no details. I have emailed/PM'ed anyone that's tried it and asked but no replies (many from posts a year or more old), including meccaman, tronxoe, blankoboy, (another guy describing it as well, but search isn't showing links for results right now, though I remember he had like a yellow fox for an avatar, enzosomething-- here he is, I even had it bookmarked, fortunately- Enzomatrx
http://forums.xbox-s...Jap MechAssault ), Tachikoma, DJBenz, cez, Nfocus, midnightcharger2, maybe a couple more guys (and at least one of those mentioned tried it with Splinter Cell but same result, the hang/freeze). Also it was suggested to someone in the forums to change his J-Xbox console's region settings from English to Japanese but that didn't work as he reported (mine is set to English for most all attempts).

To confirm which packages of Ndure I tried, (hard to tell which is up-to-date/current, but got these from "usual place" but just hope the paths of usual place I got them from where current versions):
XBOX_Krayzie_Ndure_SOFTMOD_Pack
[QuickEdit SID something (maybe not from usual place? got a "warez" kind of warning after I posted this.)]
Krayzie_MA_Ndure_Installer_v1.1

Thank you for mentioning that NTSC-J is basically the same as NTSC (US). Lots of (well-intentioned) people seem to think PAL versions would work (PAL is mostly for Europe, possibly Singapore and Australia but not sure- I'm only sure Japan is NTSC basically like the US).

Edited by dhalsim27, 06 April 2008 - 04:23 AM.


#11 krayzie

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 07:47 AM

well why don't you try a very small gamesave exploit that only loads evox to minimize corupting possibilities.
you can find those at the usual place too.

#12 ldotsfan

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 10:26 AM

If you suspect AR of corrupting the gamesave, try using Xplorer360 for a change.

#13 dhalsim27

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 04:50 PM

QUOTE(krayzie @ Apr 6 2008, 04:23 PM) View Post

well why don't you try a very small gamesave exploit that only loads evox to minimize corupting possibilities.
you can find those at the usual place too.


Thanks but which (current/safe) one is small? I looked around the "exploits" folder at the place. It seems there's a lot of exploits/packages/saves that may be old, and I just want to search first so I know the risks of using them. I took a look around the place and downloaded EvolutionX Build 3935, and MechAssaultwithEvox which looked kind of small (but MechAssaultwithEvox talks about "Free-x Bert and Ernie" which I've read is outdated ... sorry to be paranoid, but I just want to make sure first). Build 3935's readme doesn't have specific instructions, just descriptions of .ini settings, so may I ask, what should I search for (exploit vs. dashboard tutorials etc)? Before trying any old thing, is there something I can do to just backup my eeprom and hd password? (probably not without first getting the exploit to load a dashboard, right?)

If corruption is the problem, it's awfully consistent with NTSC-J people. btw if anyone knows of anyone that successfully softmodded an NTSC-J machine (especially with NTSC-J MechAssault) please let me know who.

Thanks again for your help with this.

Edited by dhalsim27, 06 April 2008 - 04:52 PM.


#14 ldotsfan

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Posted 07 April 2008 - 01:57 AM

There's a few stages in a softmod package:
1. Gamesave exploit
2. Font exploit ( to allow xbox to run unsigned code without the game eventually)
3. PBL or Nkpatcher (Either a bios loader or kernel patcher)
4. A dash.

During installation phase, it typically skips stage 2 to load PBL and then a dash.

You are just testing stage 1 so it doesn't matter how old the font exploits are as long as you don't actually install the package. As long as the gamesave exploits loads successfully and the xbox runs unsigned code (like a dash), the test is conclusive that the game region doesn't matter and your method of gamesave transfers works. My suggestion again is look at Xplorer360 instead of AR.

#15 dhalsim27

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Posted 07 April 2008 - 03:49 AM

QUOTE(ldotsfan @ Apr 7 2008, 10:33 AM) View Post

During installation phase, it typically skips stage 2 to load PBL and then a dash.
[...]My suggestion again is look at Xplorer360 instead of AR.


Thanks ldotsfan, that is helpful and I'll try the MechAssaultwithEvox. I was also looking into Xplorer360 yet it seems AR Datel's drivers are interfering with Xplorer360 recognizing fatx and I'll have to try Grimace420's advice here http://forums.xbox-s...o...25493&st=15 first before it will recognize my USB stick.

btw I looked in another nearby city's stores for SC or 007, no luck but I did pick up a Datel catalog which had no mention at all of Xbox (1) nor 360 related products. I think they only go after mostly Nintendo stuff and a little PS/PSP/PS2/3 market here.




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