I started a few personal projects, one of those involves writing a library to read *.SC2 files, or Simcity 2000 city save files. There's already a huge text file
documenting it, although some mysteries remain. As you can see here
, I started to move some of that document to the wiki, and it got... A little messy.
Here's the deal: I'd like to fully understand the ALTM, or Altitude map section of the file. What's known right now is that it is uncompressed, 32768 bytes of data. Each tile in a city is represented by two bytes. As far as it's known right now, the first byte or eight bits go unused. The following three bits supposedly have something to do with water. The remaining five bits represent the altitude of the tile, as a multiple of 50 feet. I'd like to focus in on the three bits that may or may not have to do with water.
As you can tell by the wiki, I spent quite a bit of time researching and testing it, only to end up more confused. Raising and lowering a title with respect to its neighbors, then adding a pond, seemed to flip these three bits in an inconsistent manner. I don't know if they actually represent something else, or are there for an unimplemented feature. I think I'm on the verge of cracking the game open with a disassembler to see what the heck it's doing with the memory.
If anyone is familiar with the game, or would like to get familiar with the game, I'd love to have your help in getting to the bottom of this. It's about time we figured out how this game saves its data
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