Welcome to “The World”
That’s the sentence pretty much every .hack fan out there has read countless times, that it will become a reality once again soon was often doubted.
I myself am a great .hack fan and have always felt extremely disappointed with the fact that CC2, the company behind .hack, never showed any interest of taking the game online to where it belongs.
I was struck in awe when CC2 announced their first .hack online game (.hack//frägment) back in the days (was it 2005?) and got disappointed once more when at first it was announced to be a japanese only release and again in 2007 when it was taken offline permanently.
Ever since then I and several other people have struggled, reverse engineered and hacked things together to bring this title back online.
Long story short – we did it.
Most of the work behind the curtains has been done by me and NCDyson here, me tackling the DNAS protection, network cryptography, checksum generation, crypto-packet-wrapping and client translation (to an extend) while NCDyson dealt with post-crypto packet bruteforcing, packet analysis and networking tests.
So far everything related to the actual game (root towns, fields, dungeons, fighting, etc) seems to work great, but a whole lot (if not all) lobby related functions like the BBS, News-System, Emails, Guilds & Chatrooms don’t work fully yet.
Also the live-preview of the Map-Editor seems to be flawed still, making Map-Design a bit more tedious without a real 3D way to preview it (only the 2D bird-view render inside the Area Server works so far).
We are going to spend the next few (holi)days trying to clean up the github server source to make it more reliable and maintainable as well as craft a ready-to-use client for connecting to our soon-to-be launched public test server.
I will keep you posted on the progress as we make it.
I also want to thank NCDyson for his hard work and investment in this project as without him we would never have made such quick post-crypto progress here.