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Massive breakthrough for Fable’s cut content.

lee

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Hi all
Many of you may of heard that Fable modding has been given a massive boast recently and so old content that was cut during early builds of the game can now be accessed. There is so much content that has been found now that it will be impossible to cover it all here. What has interested me the most has been the eight Guild Quest Cards that were found with the others but was cut from the final build of the game. These are Travelling Bully, Travelling Beggar, Easy Pickens, Ransom Victim, Mad Bomber, Trader Path, Arena Return, Bandit Camp Path Journey and Dragon Quest. Aeon who has made the incredible Fable Project Spring series has completely ripped apart the code for these Quests and has found extensive content for these unused quests that also include NPC’s, Quest Items, Scrips, Text Files, Demon Doors that are fully voiced( the Dragon Quest one is hilarious) and fully animated cut scenes that had gone unseen for over twenty years. The quests themselves contained Stealth elements, Stealing and extortion, bribery and fighting. I promise you that this content will blow you away!!!. Most of these quests were all but complete and it is so bizarre that Lionhead pulled the plug on these. All I can honestly think of, is that it was a time constraint thing. Another YouTuber Avarice has also made an incredible cut content series that also shows some of this incredible unused content. Hopefully soon you will all be able to see this content on YouTube or in a mod in the future. You can also pop onto Discord and find all this content for yourself and make up your own mind as to why it was decided that after so much hard work had gone onto these quest that they were sadly cut!!!. I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on this.
 

Steve

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This sounds amazing! This is the first I'm hearing of it, but I'm beyond intrigued! I also wasn't aware that quite so much content had been cut.

Where can we go to find out more, @lee ?
 

lee

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This sounds amazing! This is the first I'm hearing of it, but I'm beyond intrigued! I also wasn't aware that quite so much content had been cut.

Where can we go to find out more, @lee ?
Hi Steve Aeon has documented all his findings for the cut quests on PDF’s and his all on his Discord server you will also be able to watch the unused cutscenes that he has found. He is on Discord
 

JohnDoe

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Please forgive the necromantic nature of this reply.

There were exceedingly few moments in Fable history that acted as huge boons to the modding community.

The first was the release of TLC. Having the game on the PC platform was, of course, beneficial but having different versions of the same data archives and files gave additional insight into the construction of the game, allowing it to be meddled with to a further degree. To a lesser degree having TLC be released back on xbox also provided more insight to platform-specific details, as this time the data was identical.

Then Anniversary was released. Either on accident or on purpose, the pre-compilation binary data was included with the release. This made it near infinitely easier to reverse-engineer the binaries as now every variable was defined, labeled, in plain text. It was brute force dictionary attacks on crc hashes and tedious trial and error prior to that, yielding slow and questionable results. Then Anniversary was released on PC and had some measure of compatibility with existing modding tools, again providing benefit through insight and accessibility. It's only a paragraph but it cannot be stated enough, this breakthrough was huge and fully fleshed out what was and wasn't possible through binary editing, which existing tools were completely capable of without barrier aside from not knowing what the data was.

I cannot divulge the specific time or means, but there did come a time when the tools made available through the leaked (unsure who originally called it a "leak" as the intent was in fact to release) debug copies came into my possession. The tools are powerful even if not user-friendly. And they are not at all user friendly. Even through trial and error and figuring out how it worked, it still had limitations, and didn't offer much in the way of insight in the other forbidden fruits of the modding efforts, a way to easily, meaningfully create new maps, edit existing ones, mess with navigational data, the STB, and so on, nor did it provide a way to edit the executable (because why would it? They have source code, they'd change that and rebuild it).

The next breakthrough was with the archived tools and debug copies, again providing more insight through different versions, including different map configurations which weren't provided in the toolset I received, and therein giving us the means to learn what is necessary to limitlessly edit maps. It even contained source code which, like the pre-compilation binary data allowed for extensive understanding the game's workings, allowing for opportunities to do things once theorized some 15 years ago, building a hack that attached itself to the executable creating a vastly different playing experience, but also doing easier things like minor executable hacks and edits. This isn't as simple as just opening it up in Visual Studio for a number of reasons, not least of which being nothing of that nature that's been provided is the final retail version, for the right platform, or ideal (subjective) version of Fable. It's just a guide that makes it easier.

The final breakthrough would be complete final release source code for TLC and Anniversary on PC. At such a time there's literally nothing that couldn't be done.


Here's the other foot dropping.

Let's say we get that somehow. We won't but fantasy time. Let's say absolutely everything, all the equipment, resources, programs and tools, a complete knowledge base, all of it were provided to the modding community. What modding community? The big brains are gone. You have a handful of talented enthusiasts scattered here and there but the hivemind megageniuses are gone. The same for the community as a whole. There are fans who use mods for TLC and Anniversary sure, but a large, organized, centralized community there is not. This discourages activity on two fronts: Who's going to make the amazing mods that are now possible? and Who's going to use them? There are people, of course, just not many.

Leaving the fantasy where we get all that good stuff, in the world where we still have received a whole lot and so much is possible, we're on the verge of just almost being capable. It's painful. It's reaching for something on the top shelf and grazing it with your fingernails despite giving it your all. Even still, we cannot practically edit navigational data. This renders mapping kind of lame. Even if you could do new maps, they'd just be copies of old maps. And no, we can't do new maps as that requires an stb edit. Not an stb map entry that needs to be injected into the archive, no, that's been possible for 15 years. An edit to a global entry in the archive that determines the number of maps and where they are. So not new maps, but new map data on the same maps that are already copies of old maps. And then there's the executable. So much was assumed to be hardcoded that it became a quick umbrella copout for why something couldn't be done. That's hardcoded, can't do it. A lot of that wasn't true, we just didn't know better. Knowing everything we know now though, it's known exactly what is and isn't hardcoded. Sure it can be hacked, kinda, but not extensively and not practically.

That's what it's about now. It has to be practical, accessible and easy, it has to have people to do it, people to do it for, it has to be worth doing and worth doing thoroughly and well. None of that is there. It's technically possible through excessive time investment and effort to produce cool things on a small scale, made by one person and enjoyed by few. I don't want to speak for others and so won't, but for me specifically, that's why I quit and, something I now regret, have encouraged others to do so as well.

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.
 

Avarice

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Please forgive the necromantic nature of this reply.

There were exceedingly few moments in Fable history that acted as huge boons to the modding community.

The first was the release of TLC. Having the game on the PC platform was, of course, beneficial but having different versions of the same data archives and files gave additional insight into the construction of the game, allowing it to be meddled with to a further degree. To a lesser degree having TLC be released back on xbox also provided more insight to platform-specific details, as this time the data was identical.

Then Anniversary was released. Either on accident or on purpose, the pre-compilation binary data was included with the release. This made it near infinitely easier to reverse-engineer the binaries as now every variable was defined, labeled, in plain text. It was brute force dictionary attacks on crc hashes and tedious trial and error prior to that, yielding slow and questionable results. Then Anniversary was released on PC and had some measure of compatibility with existing modding tools, again providing benefit through insight and accessibility. It's only a paragraph but it cannot be stated enough, this breakthrough was huge and fully fleshed out what was and wasn't possible through binary editing, which existing tools were completely capable of without barrier aside from not knowing what the data was.

I cannot divulge the specific time or means, but there did come a time when the tools made available through the leaked (unsure who originally called it a "leak" as the intent was in fact to release) debug copies came into my possession. The tools are powerful even if not user-friendly. And they are not at all user friendly. Even through trial and error and figuring out how it worked, it still had limitations, and didn't offer much in the way of insight in the other forbidden fruits of the modding efforts, a way to easily, meaningfully create new maps, edit existing ones, mess with navigational data, the STB, and so on, nor did it provide a way to edit the executable (because why would it? They have source code, they'd change that and rebuild it).

The next breakthrough was with the archived tools and debug copies, again providing more insight through different versions, including different map configurations which weren't provided in the toolset I received, and therein giving us the means to learn what is necessary to limitlessly edit maps. It even contained source code which, like the pre-compilation binary data allowed for extensive understanding the game's workings, allowing for opportunities to do things once theorized some 15 years ago, building a hack that attached itself to the executable creating a vastly different playing experience, but also doing easier things like minor executable hacks and edits. This isn't as simple as just opening it up in Visual Studio for a number of reasons, not least of which being nothing of that nature that's been provided is the final retail version, for the right platform, or ideal (subjective) version of Fable. It's just a guide that makes it easier.

The final breakthrough would be complete final release source code for TLC and Anniversary on PC. At such a time there's literally nothing that couldn't be done.


Here's the other foot dropping.

Let's say we get that somehow. We won't but fantasy time. Let's say absolutely everything, all the equipment, resources, programs and tools, a complete knowledge base, all of it were provided to the modding community. What modding community? The big brains are gone. You have a handful of talented enthusiasts scattered here and there but the hivemind megageniuses are gone. The same for the community as a whole. There are fans who use mods for TLC and Anniversary sure, but a large, organized, centralized community there is not. This discourages activity on two fronts: Who's going to make the amazing mods that are now possible? and Who's going to use them? There are people, of course, just not many.

Leaving the fantasy where we get all that good stuff, in the world where we still have received a whole lot and so much is possible, we're on the verge of just almost being capable. It's painful. It's reaching for something on the top shelf and grazing it with your fingernails despite giving it your all. Even still, we cannot practically edit navigational data. This renders mapping kind of lame. Even if you could do new maps, they'd just be copies of old maps. And no, we can't do new maps as that requires an stb edit. Not an stb map entry that needs to be injected into the archive, no, that's been possible for 15 years. An edit to a global entry in the archive that determines the number of maps and where they are. So not new maps, but new map data on the same maps that are already copies of old maps. And then there's the executable. So much was assumed to be hardcoded that it became a quick umbrella copout for why something couldn't be done. That's hardcoded, can't do it. A lot of that wasn't true, we just didn't know better. Knowing everything we know now though, it's known exactly what is and isn't hardcoded. Sure it can be hacked, kinda, but not extensively and not practically.

That's what it's about now. It has to be practical, accessible and easy, it has to have people to do it, people to do it for, it has to be worth doing and worth doing thoroughly and well. None of that is there. It's technically possible through excessive time investment and effort to produce cool things on a small scale, made by one person and enjoyed by few. I don't want to speak for others and so won't, but for me specifically, that's why I quit and, something I now regret, have encouraged others to do so as well.

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.
Wow, John. I had no idea the debug was deciphered far earlier than we got access to it. Thanks for your Ted Talk! Was insightful. Look at it this way: the effort you and the others at the FableTLCMod Forums did inspired people like myself to keep this process going along. Even when we thought no hope was left. Fable modding would literally not exist without the effort you guys put into it. I honestly can't even put into words how grateful I am for that.
 
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lee

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Hey Avarice, odd to speak to you on here and not on your Discord lol. Yes the boys at FableTLCmods have did some fantastic work over there over the years and although I did a few small bits on mods going back years ago I was always impressed by what they could do given the limited tools that was available then. If you look at YouTube now, you can see some incredible videos and there are some amazing mods. We can only dream of seeing unused quests restored to Fable or new ones entirely unfortunately but for me I look at things very optimistically and always keep my fingers crossed that a big break could be found in the future. I recommend anyone who used to mod in the past to give it a go now as it’s not as restrictive as it once was and there are some great mods out there.
 
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