Sharing source code with game patches?

Oct 21, 2021 at 1:39 AM
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I understand that CSE2 is safely in the DMCA zone as far as that goes, but would game patches be an acceptable way to distribute the modified source code of this engine?

My main reason for asking this question is that I’ve seen several, let’s say, impressive ports of CSE2 that I would love, love, love to get my grubby little fingers on, but I am barred from doing so by that DMCA. I also have several modifications either completed or in progress that I would like to share, but am prohibited from doing so for the same reason.

I have found that the FLIPS patcher can patch almost any type of file, including .zip files. If we leave the collection of the [less than legal] source files up to the end user, the creator could, in theory, create a patch of the source and push that instead.

I have observed that most classic game romhacks are shared this way for legal purposes. Is there any fine print that prohibits the sharing of the source in the same manner?

Also, I am not quite certain on the fine mechanics of the .bps patch (the format I have heard to be the most feature-rich and dynamic). I understand that in simple terms, it is a set of instructions that tells the executable to change certain bytes at certain addresses to other values. I don’t know how reverse-engineerable they are without the source file, especially if major changes were made to the mod. (Because technically, I could create a “patch” for a blank text file that would turn it into the source code.)


Here are some informative links I found on the mechanics of game patches:
https://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php?topic=23034.0
https://www.smwcentral.net/?p=faq&page=1219815-bps-files
 
Oct 23, 2021 at 3:34 AM
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stuff like bps files could work on asm hacks but not on cse2, because yknow, compilers
also note that most people that use cse2 do not use the accurate branch (which is supposed to be the game using all the old ass directdraw/win32 functions like freeware does) but use portable (which is just the game but ported to different apis so it can work on other systems) or enhanced-lite (this is more common due to how easy it is to setup a mod enviroment) and if you take compile flags into the mix it would make it a whole mess
 
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Oct 24, 2021 at 4:04 AM
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stuff like bps files could work on ASM hacks but not on cse2, because, you know, compilers
also note that most people that use cse2 do not use the accurate branch (which is supposed to be the game using all the old ass DirectDraw/win32 functions like freeware does) but use portable (which is just the game but ported to different APIs so it can work on other systems) or enhanced-lite (this is more common due to how easy it is to setup a mod environment) and if you take compile flags into the mix it would make it a whole mess


I believe you misunderstand the point I make. I am not talking of patching the built executable, but a .zip file of the source code.

In this example, GameSource.zip contains the stock source code that one can find on the internet through some means or another (uncompiled).

Let's say I make some noteworthy modifications to the source code, and create a modified set of source code with these changes in it (also uncompiled).
We'll call it, say, ModifiedSource.zip

In order for me to share it without blatantly posting any of the original code, I was proposing to create a patch for the GameSource.zip file
so that applying this patch to it will create the "ModifiedSource.zip" file.

After applying the patch, the output file will still be uncompiled and change-ready for the recipient.

In this manner, I [should, hence the original question] be in the clear from any DMCA risk because I am not actually posting the source code, but rather a set of instructions to turn a commonly available source into the final, modified product.

(Let me assure you that the patching process works without any hitches, and creates a 1:1 copy of the desired files. Function is not my question. It's legality.)
 
Oct 26, 2021 at 12:16 PM
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I've lost track a bit but we've basically been letting mods compiled from CSE2 still get posted. Accounting for all the other ways we've bastardised the game engine a code patch doesn't strike me as the worst compromise, but given that it's also in turn limited to others who already have CSE2 I do have to wonder if there's nowhere else you could obtain/post these things.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 1:45 AM
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no need as binaries are allowed everywhere that source distribution is banned, patching plaintext is pointless as no matter what the patch will still have the "illegal" content in plain text form (plus unless you're patching nothing and making basically a new file with the patch alone the base would be "illegal" to post anyway)
 
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