Here we are. Today’s the day where V Sector’s project, Ys vs. Trails in the Sky: Alternative Saga, finally sees the light. You can all now finally play the fruit of 22 months of labor as a team.
DISCLAIMER: Remember that Ys vs. Sora no Kiseki: Alternative Saga is a Falcom game that was only released on PSP. Hence, you will only be able to play this game in one of two ways: a PSP/PS Vita/PS TV with custom firmware installed, or a PSP emulator, such as PPSSPP. Unlike previous games worked on by the Geofront, this game is not available on PC. If you want to purchase Ys vs. Sora no Kiseki: Alternative Saga, you can do so through the Japanese PSN store for PSP games, or you can purchase a physical copy off of sites like Amazon.jp and eBay.
For this release, you will need a few things:
- A PSP ISO for the Japanese version of Ys vs. Sora no Kiseki: Alternative Saga.
- The Geofront-provided Ys vs. Trails in the Sky patcher.
- A way to play PSP games. This can either be an emulator like PPSSPP or hardware with custom firmware installed, such as a physical PSP, PSTV, or a PS Vita.
If you want a more visual guide, feel free to follow our video guide on how to patch the game, setting up PPSSPP, configuring the online settings for online multiplayer via Parsec, and setting up the HD Graphics Pack.
If you want a more textual description of how to patch the game, stick around for the rest of the post.
Now, where do you get the ISO? There are a few ways to get it. If you have a physical copy of the game and a CFW PSP, you can rip your ISO yourself. You can also do this from a digitally purchased copy through Sony’s PSN. Wherever you get your ISO from, make sure its checksums and size coincide with one of the sources listed below:
Size: 1344208896 bytes (1281 MiB)
PSP PSN Download
Size: 1344208896 bytes (1281 MiB)
Vita PSN Download (EBOOT)
Size: 1344208896 bytes (1281 MiB)
If you acquire your ISO from somewhere else, use a checksum tool to make sure it coincides with the above ones. We cannot guarantee any ISOs that don’t match will work with our patch.
Make sure it’s a clean ISO that hasn’t been patched previously.
This guide will not go in-depth as to the process of ripping your own copy of Ys vs. Sora no Kiseki: Alternative Saga. We can’t delve too deeply into this for various reasons; we trust you to do your research and support the original release whenever possible.
After you have secured your ISO, you can download the Ys vs. Trails in the Sky patcher here at geofront.esterior.net. The downloading process is the same as with any other Geofront release.
You can find it on the Ys vs. Trails in the Sky: Alternative Saga page.
Be sure to verify that the link you’re provided is one of the Geofront links. These are the only links that we can vouch for as not being modified or updated outside of our control. With the way the downloader on the site is set up, all links, both local and mirrors, can be found tagged with the Geofront subdomain before pulling the file.
If this site does go down during the process, many of us on Twitter or in the Geofront Discord Server will help provide the mirror links for you.
STEP 1: UNZIP THE PATCH FILE AND RUN GEOFRONTDELTAPATCHER.EXE
The Ys vs. Trails in the Sky installer comes in a zip file, so you will need to use a program such as 7zip to extract the folder.
Inside this folder, you’ll find the launcher’s executable. All you need to do is run GeofrontDeltaPatcher.exe.
STEP 2: PATCH THE ISO
This patcher will be able to patch a raw Japanese ISO for Ys vs. to run with the Geofront version of the game.
This is what the patcher will look like:
Go ahead and press the three dots. It will open your File Explorer. Point the patcher to your copy of Ys vs. Sora no Kiseki and click Open.
With your game now loaded, you can click on “Patch” and the program will start patching the ISO. Once it’s done, it’s gonna give you another File Explorer window, asking you where you want to save the file to. Save it wherever you want, and that’s it! You now have an Ys vs. Trails in the Sky patched ISO.
Now you’re ready to play the game! You can transfer this ISO file to your PSP or install it in your PS Vita/PS TV to play there, or you can play it through an emulator such as PPSSPP (our emulator of choice).
If you encounter any bugs/issues with the patching process or the game itself, such as bugs or text issues, feel free to reach out to any one of us in the team through various channels of contact. You can join our Discord server where we have active channels for both troubleshooting and text bugs alike. You can also tweet at us to the @GeofrontTeam Account on Twitter.
For setting up multiplayer, you will need to do this through PPSSPP and Parsec. PPSSPP does have its own netplay, but due to it being slow and unresponsive, we recommend Parsec instead.
It is recommended that you set up four different instances of PPSSPP in your own machine and invite your friends to play with you over Parsec. Chuji has thankfully set up a suite with all the instances of PPSSPP mostly set up, and you can download it HERE if you would rather not mess with settings yourself.
To be brief about it, you will need to configure some things in PPSSPP.
- Enable Networking/WLAN
- Randomize your mac addressess.
- Pick and assign the same WLAN channel for each instance.
- Enable the built-in PRO ad-hoc server and uPnP.
- Making sure every instance has the same port offset.
- Set your PSP model on PPSSPP as PSP 2000/3000.
We have mostly glossed over it, but we really recommend you take a look at our video guide for a more in-depth and step-by-step look at how to set up your PPSSPP instances.
As part of our efforts to breathe life anew into the game we have also done work to be able to provide those of you playing on PPSSPP on PC with an HD Texture pack, so you can say goodbye to the PSP’s blurry or pixelated textures!
This effort was led by our Video Editor, Chuji, with help from yours truly and Sorcerian, the graphics editor for the C Sector, who worked on Trails from Zero and Trails to Azure. This pack will bring the game to a glorious HD by making use of PPSSPP’s texture replacement feature. Note that this is not compatible with original hardware such as PSP, PS Vita, or PS TV. It is exclusive to PPSSPP.
To use the HD Pack, you will need to download it from HERE.
If you need a more visual set of instructions, our instructional video also covers this.
STEP 1: UNZIP THE HD PACK
Unzip it, yet again using a tool like 7Zip. Inside the unzipped folder, you will find both a readme and a folder named NPUH50276. This is the texture pack, and what you will need to move to PPSSPP’s game directory.
STEP 2: GETTING THE FILES WHERE THEY NEED TO BE
While having the game already loaded in PPSSPP, go to File, and then click Open Memory Stick. This will directly take you to the Memory Stick directory in your File Explorer.
From here, navigate to PSP\TEXTURES. If these folders don’t exist, you can create them yourself. Your ultimate directory should be PPSSPP\memstick\PSP\TEXTURES.
Here, you will need to copy that previously mentioned NPUH50276 folder found in the HD Pack zip file. If a folder already exists, overwrite it.
That has put the files where they need to be! Now, you need to turn on Texture Replacement on PPSSPP.
STEP 3: TURNING ON TEXTURE REPLACEMENT ON PPSSPP
To do this, navigate to your Settings menu on PPSSPP.
Now, navigate to the Tools Tab and then to Developer Tools.
Now that you’re here, scroll down to Texture Replacement. Tick the “Replace Textures” box and you’re good to go!
Load or reload the game, and now you should be seeing Ys vs. Trails in the Sky in its HD pack glory.
Recommended Emulator Settings and Common Issues
PPSSPP, as an emulator, has its set of emulation quirks. One of those can be black lines on top or below text, as seen below.
There are a few ways to get rid of this. Go to Game Settings and change either of these options:
- Set Texture Scaling to at least 2x, though be wary that this is very CPU heavy.
- Set Rendering Resolution to 1x PSP with no upscaled textures.
- Set the Texture Filtering to Nearest instead of the default setting of Auto.
Some other issues you may have are:
Sprites are flickering. How do I remove this?
Go to Settings -> Graphics -> Mode -> Skip buffer effects
Set your Rendering Backend to Vulkan or OpenGL.
Note: Skipping buffer effects can cause some black flickering in the menus. If you set your rendering to Vulkan or OpenGL, it allows both buffered rendering without sprite flickering.
Some textures have jagged or uneven edges in places. I’m using the HD Texture Pack.
This occurs when using HD Textures with Texture Filter set to Nearest. If you don’t wish to change this setting, it’s also fixed by running PPSSPP on full screen.
During the tutorial, the screen went white, and I can’t see what I’m doing. What do I do?
Exit to the World Map and go back into the fight. That should fix the issue.
A Message from the Team
The V Sector is incredibly proud of how far such a ragtag team has gotten. Our origins were murky and far from organized at first, but passion and support from many sources have carried us through to be able to deliver you all a finalized product we can all be proud of. It would not do well if we all didn’t get to say our closing thoughts on the project. I’ll let the team give their closing thoughts ahead:
After what feels like forever, Ys vs. Trails is finally complete! It’s amazing seeing what started as a small spreadsheet translation attempt blossom into the polished final product it is today. This could never have happened without the efforts of the team. Everyone did their part, and put their best efforts. I hope you enjoy seeing the cast interact with each other as much as I did!
— LT. Project Lead, Graphics Editor.
We’re here at the end, and it’s a little hard to know what to write. Ys vs. has been a wonderful project that I’m incredibly grateful I was able to be a part of. Never did I think asking to edit the original iteration of this project would get me this far, nor that it would even let me work with the Geofront. Thinking about it, it’s still a little surreal. I’m very thankful for the hard work this team has put in—without every one of them, we never would’ve come this far. Working on this game has brought a lot of joy to my life, in many ways, and I hope I’ll be able to work on many more. I discovered a passion for editing I hope one day I can pursue. I’m thankful.
— Livi. Co-Project Lead, Lead Editor, Graphics Editor.
It’s been a long journey, but Ys vs. Trails is finally out. I can’t thank everyone on the team enough for all they’ve done to make this release more than I ever thought it could be. I’m so grateful to have been surrounded by such creative and capable individuals, and I hope everyone who plays the game will appreciate their efforts and craftsmanship as much as I have. If you like their work, please give them a shout and tell them about it. It does all of our hearts good to hear positive feedback. Here’s hoping I get to address you all again on future projects!
— Shawnji. Lead Translator.
Well, we’re finally at the end of the road. It feels good to finally look back at all the work we’ve put into the patch and be proud of the thing we created. Speaking personally, it’s been a dream of mine to work on a Falcom game, and I’m eternally grateful and indebted to my incredibly talented teammates for taking a chance and letting me on the project. They’re the greatest group I’ve ever worked with. I hope you all have fun with Ys vs. Trails in the Sky! Because working on it with all of my friends here at V Sector really was the experience of a lifetime—and I can’t wait to do it all over again in a future project!
— Sly. Editor.
It’s almost hard to believe that we have come this far, but here we are: Ys vs. Trails has been released. I would like to thank every member of the team, both for working very hard on this project and for giving me a chance to be a part of it. And I would also like to thank everyone who has been looking forward to Ys vs. Trails in the Sky all this time, your support truly means a lot to us. Working on this game has been an incredible experience, and I really hope this will lead to us working together again in the future!
— EnDavio. Non-scenario editor. Programmer.
It’s been a long journey, but we’re finally at the end. Looking back, it’s been a surreal experience. I never would’ve imagined, when we first started, that we’d end up working with Geofront, with a polished, professional translation to boot! I can’t thank everyone involved in this project enough, for all their contributions to this project. This project wouldn’t be where it is now if had even a single person on the team not been here. I hope you’ll enjoy the culmination of our efforts: Ys vs. Trails in the Sky!
— HidoranBlaze. Lead Programmer.
It’s time! It’s here! I’m so excited to see our patch finally released for everyone to enjoy. I’ve really come to adore Ys vs. Trails over the course of this project, and I hope you’ll also enjoy this fun, unique celebration of Falcom’s two biggest series. I’m blown away by how committed everyone in V Sector has been, to be honest! Witnessing that firsthand as part of the team is not an experience I expected to have, and it’s definitely not one I’ll forget.
— Chuji. Video Editor.
While I was only here for the tail end of the process, I would like to express how happy I am to see the amount of attention to detail and effort put in to make this patch a success. I will keep this brief since you may have heard enough of me talking about the technical aspects, but I’m happy with how this patch turned out and I hope you are, too. I’m looking forward to future projects, whatever they may be.
— Ribose. Programmer.
Thank you, team! I will try to not over-extend this last part, but I really want to bring forth how amazing a project this was, for all of us. Some of us were working on Ys vs. for any amount of years, even before the V Sector proper was formed. And here we are, at the end. After 22 months of hard work—after a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. And I can definitely say we’re all proud of what we did.
We look forward to the upcoming days, and maybe even more beyond that. To people finally being able to play this oft-forgotten piece of Falcom history that was trapped and left behind in the PSP. I think we were able to breathe new life into it, and I hope the same goes for all of you. I don’t imagine it’s an overstatement that we’ve come to cherish this game, as quirky as it is. We hope you will, too.
Thank you. Sincerely, V Sector.