An update on very slow progress

So it’s been quite a while since my last update on here. That said I’ve been posting a little more frequently on the /r/evnova subreddit. The last year or so has been hectic, leaving me with very little time to work on this project (moving, renovating, and my partner and I are expecting our first child very soon).

That said I do work on this whenever I can, or have the motivation to try and conquer some of the stubborn formats used. I’m now getting closer and closer to having everything parsed, and I think I have all of the documentation required to do so.

Since my last post I have managed to determine/decode the following formats (of which I’ll provide some documentation for soon.)

  1. The character file encryption. The npïl resource was never heavily documentation to begin with, but information does exist in a vanishingly few places. However at some point an encryption was added to the npïl data making it impossible to easily edit as before. I’ll make a post about this soon.
  2. The pattern resource, or ppat is used to provide the static on the status bar in the mini map. It’s rather annoying because it probably could have been provided as anything else and be easier to work with… well back then I suppose API’s existed to do just that!
  3. The sound resource, or snd, is a cocktail of varying formats and the the extension ‘snd’ has been used for so many different file formats over the years that it is almost impossible to determine how to decode this thing. I’ve found old Apple Documentation about ‘Type 1’ and ‘Type 2’ sounds, but they are so limited on details. Hopefully it gives a starting point for writing a full parser.
  4. The color icon, or cicn is another complex format that I just need to get done. I have documentation for it as with ppat and snd, but it’s high level details and doesn’t go into the exact structure exactly.
  5. DLOG/DITL. These are used to define window layouts and Nova uses them to define the layout of windows such as Shipyard, Mission Computer, Landing Screen, etc… all of them in fact.

Well that’s all for now. Hopefully I’ll begin to have more things to show soon.

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