In asking this, I’m not specifically asking why you’re using the best site in the Fire Emblem Rom Hacking community, but why you’re Rom Hacking in the First Place? Had the thought never crossed your mind before you saw one of Arch’s videos about EN? What about how you got your first copy of Blazing Blade as a kid and thought to yourself “Man it would be so cool if I were in this!” Everybody got into the Fire Emblem Community based on some motivation. What was yours specifically?
I’ll go ahead and throw in my own answer. Back when I was in the 6th grade (2012-2013) I didn’t know how roms worked and would use some website that allowed you to play them online. My favorite, after beating Sacred Stones and Blazing blade, was this one called the Last Promise. It was made by some company called Blazer earlier that year. Of course, now I know that it wasn’t an official title, but at the time, how was I supposed to know any better? When I got stuck in the first chapter of Anakin’s route, I googled a playthrough to see how other people played it, and one of the videos had the term “Rom Hack” in the title. I googled the words, and found out that people were making their own games. From that moment, I knew I wanted to be apart of the community. Of course, my motives then were different than they are now; I wanted to make some groundbreaking Rom Hack and get famous in a community as opposed to having fun.
Regardless, now I’m interested in how some of you got into the community.
I’ve a lot of hobbies, really a lot, I came to Fire Emblem ROMHacking when I was trying to program my own “Final Fantasy Tactics” in an old engine called Game Maker 8.1(Rest in piece fella, Game Maker Studio will never replace you to me ) I had played the Fire Emblem franchise a little before, and like you I found out The Last Promise in some website, but I knew what where ROMHacks before, because I had tried Pokemon Hacking before, so I got into Serenes Forest Forums and saw Blazer’s amazing Ultima Tutorial. I then created a bunch of incomplete/small hacks that never were published. Later on I kinda stopped with Fe Hacking and went back to using Engines for games. Then I bought Awakening and my Fire Emblem Hacker instinct set fire and I said, shit, it’s time I start a real good project. Izarck’s Quest thus was born. Though later on my ROM got screwed up by FEditor and I lost interest for a lot of time. Until this year I decided, fuck let me see how Serene’s doing. Then I saw a PM by markyjoe about my ragefest subimission, it was trashed to death because it was “terrible”(as in, Fe4 long chapters and difficulty, and I didn’t know players nowadays had such bad taste for maps and preferred small boring maps, but that’s my point of view). Then I came here to FEU in order to get more ASM(since serenes has close to none asm hackers), and so I decided to stop lurking around and joined the Discord Server as well as trying to get my nickname cleant. And I organize my time beetween programming my Visual Novel game I’m going to sell at Steam and ROM Hacking, even though I’m not profiting in ROM hacking, I want to complete a hack. BUt my priority is still my Visual Novel.
I was watching GameXplain’s stream recordings of FE7, and I was pretty into it. But while watching one of the parts, I saw a video that caught my eye. The video being MarkyJoe’s; it was the video of him playing a Ragefest submission: Bullet Hell Madness. And I remember enjoying the video quite a bit. And then I believe I started watching more and more Ragefest videos, until I really wanted to try hacking myself. Of course, I wasn’t confident enough to actually make a Ragefest submission, so I just did the classic reskin stuff with the help of the Ultimate Tutorial, and eventually I found myself at this site while looking for tutorials on things.
Of course I mostly just lurk here, but hey.
The first gba game i play is fe7,then 6 and finally 8. When i am done with the trilogy fe gba i just wondering " Is there any gba fe left?". Then i did some Google search and the word " Fire emblem roms hack and fan game project" shining my eyes. Having fun since 2014 in Serene forests and this site( especially when you guys show me how to use Febuilder but honestly i am not smart enough create my own game, just messing around with some battle animations )
I used to be active on a forum when FE7 first came out, so around 2003/2004. I used to use FEPlanet and FE:Sanctuary of Strategy (I think it was velthomer.net?) loads. I got into emulation because I was eager to play FE6 in English.
I didn’t really learn about romhacking until a few years later when I saw folks messing around in Nightmare. I remember GhebFE, ChinaFE, and Tactics Universe distinctly as some of the earliest romhack projects.
I never really did much myself besides manually randomize FE7 a few years ago. Once I saw all of the new tools and how far FE8 hacking had come, I wanted to give it a spin and FEU seemed like the right place to do that.
I’ve been making graphics for ROM hacks for… probably a little over a decade now? Maybe a couple of years less than that for when I took a break in college.
When I first joined the online fandom (over at FESS), a bunch of users had mock screenshots in their signature areas - customized stat sheets for characters, mock combat stills, animated custom battle sprites, and so on. My initial reaction was, “wait, did I miss something when I played through the game?” I was quickly introduced to the art of spriting and set out on the path I had chosen, diving head first into making custom things for lots of UI stuff, making a plethora of custom battle scenes and stat sheets, and so on.
I wouldn’t have some of the friends and acquaintances I do today, and it’s still a fun hobby to dive into, even though I mostly do straight asset creation nowadays instead of making mockups - the fad is dead, time to let it rest.
I’ve been playing Fire Emblem since 2012 or so, and I’d have seen random romhacking clips on YouTube without paying much heed to what was going on. A Nightmare mention here, likely a sighting of Matthew’s Nightmare and the like there, without much context on things.
Eventually I ended up downloading Nightmare and poked around at FE7 for a while. At some point something gave me the idea to change all the weapon stats to match FE4’s stats instead, and knowing Eclipse drained HP to 1 in FE6, thought I could just make it do the same in FE7 with the click of a button. Turns out that it wasn’t so simple. Why would anything be simple? Well, I went onto Serenes and asked how to make Eclipse act more like Hel. I was promptly informed that it would be an ASM job, not to be done with the snap of a finger. However, a man named Gryz posted the requisite hex edit to change half HP to HP to 1, and dropped a link to FEU for some related stuff. And that’s what eventually brought me to FEU, back in August 2015. I didn’t actually register until September because I’m slow at registering for things, but that was the root cause for me joining.
As a bonus, how about I post the Serenes thread that started it all? Has it really been nearly three years? Well, that’s nothing in comparison to the actual veterans, around since the days of the Sanctuary of Strategy and the old FEU. But that FEU has come and gone, and instead we have the FEU we have today.
On a somewhat related note, how I joined the Discord. The forums were quiet. I complained in the under. People told me things happen on the discord, including the “funposting.” And then I joined the discord, saying something along the lines of “So is this where people hang out now?” Well, that’s where people hang out now.
My life story (tl;dr I’m old as fuck in net years):
When I was really young, I joined a community called Fire Emblem World. This was way back when I first got a dialup internet connection. I first discovered Fire Emblem when a friend of mine showed me his copy of Blazing Sword in the 5th grade. It was on FEW that I first encountered the ROM hacking scene, as FEW had started it’s own ill-fated community hack. The lead hacker was a user by the name of IcyToast, who later went on to be the first person to sketch out the event code which led to Nintenlord’s development of the Event Assembler. I’d always been a game designer at heart, I used to fill notebooks with different ideas for Legend of Zelda sequels and eventually Fire Emblem sequels. I remember devoting an entire notebook to “Sacred Stones Part II”, so ROM hacking was a vessel for me to implement those ideas.
After FEW fell into obscurity due to an absentee admin who refused to pass the baton (a mistake that I made sure that I would not replicate), users congregated on a shoot-off called Fire Emblem Anthology. That was where I first became a staff member. The main admin Flarebreeze kind of hated my guts (the first of many, lol) because hey I was just a kid and didn’t exercise the best of judgment (I still don’t), but he saw that I was an effective organizer in a budding hacking community. FEA started it’s own ill-fated community hack, which is where IcyToast and I first got to know one another. With FEA in decline, I decided to start my own community. At first, it was called Fire Emblem Legends and was later rebranded to Fire Emblem Universe. This was over a decade ago.
The first FEU saw the development of the original Event Assembler and FEditor, and existed before Serenes Forest even created it’s own forums. As I became more invested in my projects, first FE4A and then EN, I delegated more of the administrative duties to my staff. After SF began to monopolize the FE fandom (when FESS, which was a long-time powerhouse, fell into obscurity), FEU attempted to expand beyond one series to a more general SRPG forum. The move backfired. Eventually I decided to move on and appointed Norodo to be the head admin based on the recommendation of my staff, Norodo then rebranded FEU into Shrine of Seals and the community slowly faded into obscurity as many had done before.
With SF firmly in control of the fandom, I also spent most of my time there in order to promote my own work and continue serving as an organizer in the ROM hacking community. I joined a Skype group that later came to be known as Team OVERTROLL, where I met many of the people who became my colleagues here today. Eventually conflicts with SF’s leadership and userbase inspired me to get back in the community-building game once again. At first, I tried to start up a forum called FE Cafe with the base of people that I’d gotten to know through my involvement with Team OVERTROLL. Unfortunately, it failed to gain traction and I put those ambitions on hold.
On a whim, I decided to give it another shot a little over 3 years ago and revived FEU. And here we are.
Around 2012-2013 I had some irl friends who were super into Fire Emblem, active on SF, and were trying to do hacking (one gave up, the other worked with FEXP briefly then also gave up). At that time they also introduced me to the games, so in a way hacking and FE have been entwined for me since the start. At that time I was dabbling with hacking GBA Pokemon games myself, which never really went anywhere.
Fast-forward to December 2016, I’ve been a casual fan of FE for the intermediate time but haven’t gone too deep into it; come me stumbling across Fire Emblem content on YouTube and falling down the rabbit hole of FE; prior to that point I had only played FE8, FE12, Awakening and Fates, in the year between then and the following December I played most every other FE game.
Around Summer of 2017 I remembered FE hacking was a thing, so I went to look into it, finding Blazer’s Ultimate Tutorial. Since that’s a very intimidating read, I didn’t get very far into it before I basically gave up since the amount of work involved across so many different programs seemed too daunting for me.
Come mid-January of this year I’m in a Fire Emblem Discord server and someone mentions FEBuilder, something I’ve never heard of, and when I inquire they link it to me. Downloaded it, messed with it for like a month on my own, learning the ins and outs of the program and the way everything works in an FE8 ROM. In the process, I managed to find some bugs with FEBuilder and iirc Klokinator told me to come to the FEU thread to report them; later joined the FEU Discord and have stuck around to make meme hacks keep learning and honing my craft.
My first FE game (That I played after I was 13) was Fire Emblem Echoes (Never played Awakening and Fates). Ever since then I wanted to express how excellent the game was. So I downloaded the GBA trilogy and delved even deeper into the series. I also played Mystery of the Emblem as a kid with my mother. However, I couldn’t read Japanese, but my mother could. My love for the series started when I was 8 oddly enough, then it was but a memory when I turned 12 (I’m 16 now). I wanted to continue to express my thoughts on the series…so I looked for a blog on anything FE related. I found FEU, and I felt like I was home ever since that day I made an account. Thx for making me seem like I’m at home you guys.
Well let’s see here. My first game was Sacred Stones back in like 6th grade I think. I had gotten an o3DS for my birthday and I found out I had access to what Ninty called the Ambassador program that gave 10 free games to people who had the original 3DSes from before the first price drop. One of those games was this weird turn-based strategy type game called Fire Emblem Sacred Stones. Now I’ve always been a sucker for turn based games, I love them to bits, so this game instantly became one of my favorite things. About a year and a half later, during the summer of my 8th grade year, I decided to see if there were any other Fire Emblem games. to my surprise this wasn’t some cheapo one-off game, but a full fledged series of games with lore and everything. I also stumbled across the concept of ROMhacking. And from there I was introduced to a site called Serene’s Forest. Now I didn’t post there or anything for a while, but what I did do was find this nifty little tool called Nightmare. So I messed about with Nightmare and FEditor (and quickly learned that FEditor is indeed a shit). I didn’t really get too into ROMhacking at that time, I mostly just replaced animations and such. Then I got bored with it and didn’t even think about it for about 2 years or so. Then about a year ago I decided on a whim to give it a whirl again because it was kinda fun the first time around, even if I had 0 clue what I was doing. Then I joined FEU, lurked a bit, eventually joined the Discord server, and then ended up getting somewhat involved with the community. Gradually I started hanging around the Discord more and more, and now I’m on there fairly frequently.