NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Harry97
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby Harry97 » Mon Oct 31, 2022 10:02 pm

minotauri wrote:The modded strmdata.db file that I am using in the NCAA NEXT actually has a last name character limit of 10 since my updated names database only has 10 character max on names. So this is already implemented into the mod we are working on. The next step, which JDHalfrack was off and on working on, is completely removing the columns that store the remaining letters to reduce to overall size of the entire database save file.

Where in STRMDATA.DB are you able to limit the last name to 10 characters?

Deleting some of the last name columns in the roster (PLXXs) in Excel would certainly lower file size. That would be very interesting if doing that combined with limiting characters in STRMDATA.DB would allow it to not crash.

And just out of curiosity, I wonder if you could increase the last name character limit by the reverse method, increasing the character limit and adding additional PLXX columns. That would be pretty cool if you could, but I would have to figure out how to hack that nameplate so it doesn't squish longer names. Short of a nameplate hack, shortening the last name limit by 1 character would be very useful, as it should eliminate the squished long last names problem on the back of jerseys.

Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

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minotauri
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby minotauri » Mon Oct 31, 2022 10:10 pm

Harry97 wrote:[
Where in STRMDATA.DB are you able to limit the last name to 10 characters?

Deleting some of the last name columns in the roster (PLXXs) in Excel would certainly lower file size. That would be very interesting if doing that combined with limiting characters in STRMDATA.DB would allow it to not crash.

And just out of curiosity, I wonder if you could increase the last name character limit by the reverse method, increasing the character limit and adding additional PLXX columns. That would be pretty cool if you could, but I would have to figure out how to hack that nameplate so it doesn't squish longer names. Short of a nameplate hack, shortening the last name limit by 1 character would be very useful, as it should eliminate the squished long last names problem on the back of jerseys.


In Strmdata, there are two tables, PLFN and PLLN that are the first and last names used to generate new recruits. We converted these tables to string format so that we can use them with DB Editor. Then I modified both tables with a new database of names for each.

As far as increasing the name count, that currently isn't possible, though I'd love to investigate if we can have it search for more name values than the default set in Cheat Engine and then edit the SLUS_212.14 file for the mod. I have a database of 25,000 names ready to go from my Android app I made years ago.
I also go by Antdroid on other forums and places.

https://www.ncaanext.com - NCAA 06 NEXT Mod
https://discord.ncaanext.com - NCAA & Madden NEXT PS2 Discord

Harry97
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby Harry97 » Mon Oct 31, 2022 10:27 pm

minotauri wrote:In Strmdata, there are two tables, PLFN and PLLN that are the first and last names used to generate new recruits. We converted these tables to string format so that we can use them with DB Editor. Then I modified both tables with a new database of names for each.

Oh, cool. And then you would have to convert them back to the original format after you are done working with them? So that would be like the reverse of what you did in your roster converter with converting NCAA PS3 names (that are in string format) to the PS2 format of one letter per column. It sounds like you're doing anything you can think of to reduce file size in your quest to get the full 127 teams working in a Dynasty.

Your dedication to NCAA 06 and your determination to find a way to achieve your Dynasty dreams is very inspiring. I hope you find a way, it would be a tremendous accomplished to get all 127 teams working.
minotauri wrote:As far as increasing the name count, that currently isn't possible, though I'd love to investigate if we can have it search for more name values than the default set in Cheat Engine and then edit the SLUS_212.14 file for the mod. I have a database of 25,000 names ready to go from my Android app I made years ago.

Well we would need a name plate hack anyway, perhaps a cheat engine code that makes long names not get squished. What's interesting about it is if you go back to the earlier NCAAs on PS2 they don't have the squished long last name problem, in the earlier PS2 NCAAs some long names would go all the way to under the shoulder pads. I don't know if you guys ever thought about hacking that, but perhaps there was something in the Uniform file from the earlier NCAA games, more specifically the nameplate part that if we import it into a NCAA 06 uniform, would cause it to not have those squished long last names. Just an idea. As an alternative, I could see if I can come up with a cheat engine code for that. It's probably a long shot but who knows.

minotauri
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby minotauri » Mon Oct 31, 2022 10:47 pm

Harry97 wrote:Oh, cool. And then you would have to convert them back to the original format after you are done working with them? So that would be like the reverse of what you did in your roster converter with converting NCAA PS3 names (that are in string format) to the PS2 format of one letter per column. It sounds like you're doing anything you can think of to reduce file size in your quest to get the full 127 teams working in a Dynasty.


No, we are able to keep it as string values and the game reads it. We've done that to a bunch of the fields in Strmdata so the file is editable now by anyone and reeditable as well! JD did the conversion process, and I've done all the post-processing work to get it back to normal. It's been a great partnership between us to get a lot of the mods working. Because of the String conversion, I've been able to re-write the magazine headlines and captions, and also the player/coach dialogs throughout the game as well.
I also go by Antdroid on other forums and places.

https://www.ncaanext.com - NCAA 06 NEXT Mod
https://discord.ncaanext.com - NCAA & Madden NEXT PS2 Discord

Harry97
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby Harry97 » Mon Oct 31, 2022 10:49 pm

minotauri wrote:No, we are able to keep it as string values and the game reads it. We've done that to a bunch of the fields in Strmdata so the file is editable now by anyone and reeditable as well! JD did the conversion process, and I've done all the post-processing work to get it back to normal. It's been a great partnership between us to get a lot of the mods working. Because of the String conversion, I've been able to re-write the magazine headlines and captions, and also the player/coach dialogs throughout the game as well.

Sounds awesome! It would be neat to see some screenshots or videos of the game running with your Dynasty mods in it so we can see the results of your hard work in action.

minotauri
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby minotauri » Wed Nov 02, 2022 8:15 pm

Harry97 wrote:
minotauri wrote:No, we are able to keep it as string values and the game reads it. We've done that to a bunch of the fields in Strmdata so the file is editable now by anyone and reeditable as well! JD did the conversion process, and I've done all the post-processing work to get it back to normal. It's been a great partnership between us to get a lot of the mods working. Because of the String conversion, I've been able to re-write the magazine headlines and captions, and also the player/coach dialogs throughout the game as well.

Sounds awesome! It would be neat to see some screenshots or videos of the game running with your Dynasty mods in it so we can see the results of your hard work in action.


I post screenshots and clips on our discord server :)
I also go by Antdroid on other forums and places.

https://www.ncaanext.com - NCAA 06 NEXT Mod
https://discord.ncaanext.com - NCAA & Madden NEXT PS2 Discord

minotauri
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby minotauri » Thu Nov 03, 2022 12:26 am

How to Construct an In-Game Schedule Generator

This is a complex one. It requires quite a bit of knowledge which I won't go into here, and assume you know some of the basics already of how to use specific programs, but I'll go over some basics and semi-advanced background. This is going to be a long post.

First off, on the game disc, in the DATA folder, are a series of DAT files. DAT files are storage container files, much like a common zip file. They contain more files within them. For reference, DAT files are also known as TERF files. This is the official EA terminology for it, but they are typically named with the *.DAT file extension.

Our good ol' friend @JDHalfrack created a DAT read/write tool in the mid 2000's that was originally designed with Madden PC games. It's called DAT File Replacer (DFR) and has up to 5 released versions now. Version 3 may be the most useful for most things as it seems to work the best for all-around usage.

With the use of DFR, we can open DAT files, extract contents of it, and also replace contents with mods, or even append to it and add more data to the DAT containers. This is how we achieved a lot of the NEXT mod features like new teams, modifying stadiums, cloning uniforms for unique gears, and a wide host of other interesting things.

But more on that for another day...

Schedule Generation in the game is found in a file called TEMPLATE.DAT.

TEMPLATE.DAT as the name implies, is a series of SAVE templates, and other "templates" the game uses. The THIRD file in the DAT is the SCHEDULE template. For reference, other important ones are Fifth and Sixth files, as these contain the FBS and FCS default rosters. The first file is the Heisman save file, the second file is the Dynasty Mode save file template, and so on.

Ok back to SCHEDULE templates...

Now you can use DFR to extract the third file and then use Madden Xtreme DB Editor to open up this Schedule Template file and it'll show you a series of databases.

Each of these databases are a template for each conference, as well as SANN (Annual OOC rivalry matchups), SKWN (Known Schedules), and SCHD (which isnt really needed at all, but its what a schedule looks like). The conference schedules are pretty easy to decipher (SACC is the ACC, for example).

Now, how does one of these conference or annual schedules work?

Well, its basically shows a schedule rotation for X amount of years. The number of years will depend on the desired years it'll take to complete a full rotation of round-robin play. In a 10 team conference, with 9 conference games per year, its a pretty simple 18 year schedule rotation to achieve home and away vs every team. When it comes to a 12 or 14 team, with 8 opponents per year, it gets trickier and then you have to deal with rivalries and all sorts of stuff.

You can create your own, or just use my templates I made, which I will attach a zip file here for. You look at tab 2, fill in the teams you want on the right side, and on the first tab, the right side makes a rotation schedule!

Here's what the columns mean:

GTOD: Game Time of Day
GATG: Away Team
GHTG: Home Team
SESI: Season Year Number (starting with 0)
SEWN: Season Week Number
GDAT: No idea.... its either 5 or 3.
SEWT: Season Week Number.... Not sure, but its the same value as SEWN

Anyway, once you make your conference alignments, you can then use these templates to make a CSV file to import into Madden DB Editor to the appropriate schedule for each conference.

Then, you wont have to rely on an external Schedule Generator tool, and the game will make schedules automatically!

Now what are annuals?

Annuals are annual rivalries. This only requires a 2 year rotation (home and away). This is for things like Notre Dame vs USC or Army vs Navy or whatever typical rivalries there are. For the NEXT Mod, I put all the major out of conference annuals already into it.

SKWN - Known Schedules? This is pre-determined games in the future. Its not necessary, but it is if you make a new ISO from scratch like our NCAA NEXT Mod, but this requires quite a bit more work to League.DAT which maybe I'll get to in the future....


To wrap it all up, this new Template.DAT file mod requires you to modify the Schedule File 3 in DB Editor, then re-insert it back into the 3rd slot in the DAT file using DFR. Then make a new ISO Image or DISC using IMGBURN to play with the new schedule generation tool!

Templates.zip
(230.42 KiB) Downloaded 10 times
I also go by Antdroid on other forums and places.

https://www.ncaanext.com - NCAA 06 NEXT Mod
https://discord.ncaanext.com - NCAA & Madden NEXT PS2 Discord

Harry97
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby Harry97 » Thu Nov 03, 2022 1:57 am

minotauri wrote:I post screenshots and clips on our discord server :)

OK that makes sense. I would like to join the discord, but I got my hands full at the moment trying to figure out these playcall screen hacks. That's my main priority atm, and testing PLCM.csv. Then after that, playbooks. It's best for me to focus on my highest priorities first, to see how far I can get with this stuff on my own. Then I'll know if I need help. But keep in mind, you guys can work with me on any of this stuff if it interests you. I'm guessing that you got your hands full on your Dynasty testing and everything else you're doing. If I can figure out this playcall screen stuff, it would be a tremendous accomplishment. But I can't put the cart before the horse, I gotta take things one step at a time, and I don't want to release any video of my gameplay until I'm satisfied with where I have it, that's why I'm only posting screenshots thus far. I will keep you guys updated on my progress. Hopefully I will get it to a point that I'm ready to branch off more with what you guys are up to in the discord. In the meantime, it's great to know that we're all working on different aspects of this. While I try to figure out the camera stuff and the play call screen, you're deep into the Dynasty stuff. Then there's playbooks which I know JD is passionate about. I look forward to the day that I can fully join your collaborate efforts. But I first want to see how far I can get on my own with the hacks that I'm trying to figure out. But it's great to know that you guys are there if I get stuck and need help.

Harry97
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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby Harry97 » Thu Nov 03, 2022 2:06 am

minotauri wrote:First off, on the game disc, in the DATA folder, are a series of DAT files. DAT files are storage container files, much like a common zip file. They contain more files within them. For reference, DAT files are also known as TERF files. This is the official EA terminology for it, but they are typically named with the *.DAT file extension.

Our good ol' friend @JDHalfrack created a DAT read/write tool in the mid 2000's that was originally designed with Madden PC games. It's called DAT File Replacer (DFR) and has up to 5 released versions now. Version 3 may be the most useful for most things as it seems to work the best for all-around usage.

With the use of DFR, we can open DAT files, extract contents of it, and also replace contents with mods, or even append to it and add more data to the DAT containers. This is how we achieved a lot of the NEXT mod features like new teams, modifying stadiums, cloning uniforms for unique gears, and a wide host of other interesting things.

JD's wonderful DFR is very well designed. It makes life easier. So version 3 is the most useful? Is that the one that allows you to add more data to the DAT containers? I've been using 5.0, but that one doesn't seem to allow you to add more files into the .DAT, only to import / replace existing files. If version 3 allows you to add more slots to a DAT, then that is good to know. I thought maybe 5.0 added more compatibility to working with the NCAA files or something. What about version 3 makes it for useful for you? Is it just the ability to add more slots? And on the flip side, are there any issues with version 3 that were fixed in version 4 or version 5?

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Re: NCAA 06 PS2 Dynasty Save File Editing

Postby ronniejamesdio » Fri Nov 04, 2022 11:32 am

I've been lurking this project and board for quite sometime and it's time to end my silence. One of the projects I've been doing is working on is having a 120 team 1AA/FCS dynasty. I mainly play NCAA 06, 11, and 08. I have 40+ team skins that I worked on in Adobe Illustrator that I can share, if anyone wants. They are not 100% accurate, but, can used for place holders. I did a redesign for Bryant and I did some NCAA teams that didn't have a Div 1 football team (St Johns, Marquette, Creighton, Vermont, etc) and I made a custom one (Hawaii State Humpbacks) and I am working on more.

Some of the things I discovered that I hope can help:

1. TLGL on TEAM is Team logo, this includes the custom teams generic logos. This leads to hundreds of placeholder logos for the Texture packs. In my roster saves I changed the historic teams to my 1AA custom teams to test the unis and the players and because the 1AA roster saves can only have a certain amount of players. When you create a dynasty you have to swap the regular 1AA teams and manually add the custom teams. This does lead to a lot of glitches and problems. I did try one save where the 1AA and 1A team rosters are swapped and IMGBURN, but that save did not work. I believe I must've brainfarted somewhere.

2. For some placeholder UNIFORM dat files I used the unis for the other NCAAs instead of reusing Air Force. I did this for less confusion for me. For example I used NCAA 11's Norfolk State for my NDSU unis. And there's alot of repetitive uniforms like All-Alabama can be used for extra new slots. What's cool is that you can use the same code names for every NCAA, so you don't have to dump every texture 100x and can reuse the same UNIFORM dat file for all of the NCAA games.

3. If anybody's interested in putting your 1AA/FCS saved draft classes into Madden and want their college name to appear in the game for players, instead of manually editing every player, you can edit COLL in strmdata. Yes, you can even put your custom college in there (you can edit the team names). Match the NCAA TGID (located in TEAM) with COTI in COLL in strmdata and use the IMGBURN program to burn the Madden PS2 game you want to do this in. I did have some glitches with this, in some saves I had to subtract 14 in the COTI number and if the COTI number is 0, it will not appear. I try not to add any extra slot, just change the names of some of the schools (For example changing Hastings College to Creighton etc). New college names do not appear in Madden Amp or any madden editing programs, so, don't think they disappeared they just have the previous college name from that slot.


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