Cutscenes / Trigger Events

Cutscene / Event Files

After a bit of digging into the file formats of A Wonderful Life, I was able to figure out which files contain data for cutscenes.

The files in question are .sb script files. The versions of these files utilized in-game are compressed using CLZ-compression, resulting in .sb.clz files.

There are a few places where these files can be found.

  • .sb debug scripts at disc:/test/Script/
  • Unnamed CLZ-compressed versions of the above debug scripts (i.e. .sb.clz files) contained in disc:/test/Script/test.arc
  • Unnamed CLZ-compressed chapter-specific events (e.g. romance cutscenes, son cutscenes) in disc:/Chapter#.arc
  • Unnamed CLZ-compressed common events (i.e. can be triggered in any chapter) in disc:/Common.arc

The unnamed Chapter and Common events can be determined by looking at the legend in disc:/test/text/EventOCC.txt. As an example, here is disc:/Chapter2.arc, with it’s corresponding event legend.

Replacing Events with Debug Scripts

Using this knowledge, we can compress some of the debug scripts using Sukharah’s CLZ Tool, then can import them into the Chapter or Common files, replacing a previously-defined event. This is done by right-clicking the intended event in the destination .arc file, then selecting “Replace” from within Wexo’s Toolbox. Then, when the game wants to trigger the normal event, it will trigger the newly replaced debug event instead.

Here is an example where I replaced 8009_link.sb.clz in disc:/Common.arc with the (compressed) debug script 0000_Teleport.sb.clz.

0000_Teleport.sb loading instead of 8009_link.sb

The main downside of the debug scripts is that almost all of the debug text is untranslated Japanese. The above example was translated by myself by modifying debug.mes.

Here is an example using the default untranslated dialog.

Accessing Galen/Nina’s house during Chapter 2

Heart Event Cutscenes

While I could manually extract every bachelorette cutscene from Chapter1.arc and import it to replace 8009_link as above, this would be fairly time consuming. Fortunately, there’s another way.

The test script folder contains a handy script, Launcher_Love.sb.

When compressed, imported, and triggered, this script will open up a menu, from which you can select any of the possible bachelorette cutscenes including heart events, matchmaker scenes, reverse proposals, and successful marriage events.

Here’s an example loading one of Muffy’s heart events.

Muffy Heart Event 4

Note that these cutscenes can only be loaded during Chapter 1. Attempting to load them in any of the later chapters will result in a crash.

Player Model Swapping

Now that I’m able to access the contents of the previously inaccessible CLZ files, It’s time to experiment with model files.

My first test was to decompress the mainchapter archives (e.g. mainchapter0.arc.clz), then extract the boy archives from there (e.g. boy_0.arc).

Then, I went about swapping the GPL files (e.g. boy_0.gpl). Based on my previous research, these should contain all of the 3D model data needed.

My first test at importing the girl model into AWL was… less than successful.

All hail the nebulous genderless void!

But at least the game didn’t crash, so that’s a start.

After some further tests, I found that I needed to swap all of the girl/boy-associated model files (act, gpl, skn, tpl, and tam) with their boy/girl counterparts.

Time to replace some additional data!

After replacing the model files, replacing boy_0.arc and girl_0.arc in the corresponding mainchapter0.arc files with their updated versions, and repacking those into their corresponding mainchapter0.arc.clz formats, it was time to test them out.

To my surprise, the models worked with little to no issue.

We now have the female model in AWL and male character in AnWL!

Note the mirror (AnWL) or lack thereof (AWL)

The animations seem to rig fairly well to each character, with a few exceptions (e.g. standing still while holding an animal such as a dog or chicken as the girl in AWL will cause the ponytail to do weird things).

I’ll be doing some more testing regarding the animations, with the hopes of fixing any discrepancies (e.g. the above animal holding glitch, the wider/narrower stance difference between the characters, etc). I know James in the Discord has been very active in experimenting with the character animations lately.

CLZ Decompression / Recompression

Sukharah’s CLZ Compression Tool

Recently a wonderful soul who goes by Sukharah has managed to reverse-engineer the CLZ compression format used by AWL and AnWL.

They’ve used this knowledge to create a CLZ Compression Tool, which can be used to decompress clz files, as well as recompress them.

This is beyond amazing and opens up the project to begin work on models, animations, textures, and so much more.

Compiling / Downloading the Tool

The tool is meant to be compiled using a C++ compiler (e.g. g++). You can follow the instructions on Sukharah’s GitHub to compile it yourself.

Precompiled Version

For those not experienced in compiling programs, I’ve compiled a version that can be downloaded from [here]. I’ll be posting any newly compiled versions on the HMAPL Discord as Sukharah continues to develop the tool.

Note that this pre-compiled build will only work on Windows 10 and up, since that’s what I used to compile it.

Using the Tool

The utility is fairly straightforward.

I found the easiest method was to put your desired CLZ file in the same directory as CLZ.exe.

Then, open up a command prompt in that directory (e.g. type “cmd” in the Windows Explorer navigation bar).

Then, in the command prompt, execute the command:

 clz unpack input.file.clz output.file
clz unpack mainchapter0.arc.clz mainchapter0.arc

In the above example, I decompressed mainchapter0.arc.clz into it’s native arc format.

Quirks of Decompressed U8 Archives

The decompressed U8 archives (.arc files) seem to display improperly when viewed in BrawlBox (my former go-to arc tool).

Data sequence mismatching, resulting in seemingly duplicate data

As we can see from the above screenshot, the contents of boy_0.arc (embedded in mainchapter0.arc) are displayed before the actual boy_0.arc descriptor. This can cause mismatch/corruption issues when attempting to edit the files using BrawlBox.

After a bit of trial and error, I’ve found the best tool to work with these decompressed U8 archives is Wexos Toolbox

No more weird data sequence mismatches

Now that we’re able to decompress CLZ into ARC and modify these ARC files using the appropriate tools, we can play around with models, textures, and so much more.

Recompressing CLZ Files

While decompressing is one step, we need to recompress the files back into CLZ archives for any hope of the game reading them.

Fortunately, Sukharah built this functionality into their tool as well.

Unfortunately I had some issues using the “pack” function (output files would crash when loaded into AWL), although I believe this issue has been resolved in a recent revision of the tool.

So I ended up using the memory-optimized pack method.

clz pack2 input.file output.file.clz
clz pack2 mainchapter0.arc mainchapter0.arc.clz

Files compressed using the pack2 function worked perfectly, albeit with slightly longer load times than the original AWL files.