Buy and Sell Books      

GameBoy Book Reader -
Using MakeBook

[Last Modified: 3 January 2002]






Preparing a New Book

In order to create a new book file a (32 bit) Windows utility Makebook is provided. It is a simple text editor for tidying up the book text file, preparing it to be processed, and exporting it as a Game Boy ROM image.

When you open a text file you first see a dialog asking for codepage and language. These questions are designed to help make it possible to display the text correctly when you open the file, provided your PC has support for the language in question.If the text looks wrong because you don't live in the right country, don't worry. It can look wrong here and still make a good GameBoy Book!

If the title is contained in the text you can use the 'Set Title Line' function to remember the highlighted text as a title line (two title lines if using 8 pixel high font). See example above. The title has been highlighted and the toolbar button will now be clicked on.

Now prepare the book text for processing.

Typically you would edit in two newlines wherever the Game Boy should display a new line, and three newlines where the Game Boy should display 2 newlines.

Add a New Chapter Mark '~~' just before a new chapter number. For example:


In case it's not clear - the new chapter mark is two consecutive tilde characters.

Add a New Book Mark '~v' just before a new book. For example:

~vThe Return of Sherlock Holmes

In case it's not clear - the new book mark is one tilde character followed by a letter v (either upper or lower case).

Inserting a bitmap file into the text is done by following the example above which includes a bitmap wow1.bmp at the start of the book. The bitmap must be 160 pixels wide by 96 pixels high and must be 2 colour only (1 bit colour). The syntax is ~b{pathname}
That's tilde, letter b, left curly bracket, pathname, right curly bracket.


When the text is prepared to your satisfaction, you should probably save it.

Then click on the Export button on the toolbar. This will start a sequence of dialogs. The first dialog requires you to specify the Codepage, and Font File to be used.

Select them and then click on 'Next...'.

The next dialog appears. This allows you to specify various further parameters for the final Game Boy cartridge.

Only a few bytes of RAM are used, so pick the smallest option if your cartridge has RAM, else pick 'None'. The default cartridge type will usually be the best, unless you know better. Until I fix the bug the Cartridge name should be changed if it contains accented characters, or, in other words, any character above 7fh (any non-ASCII character).

Click on 'Finish' and the book cartridge will be made. This process is not particularly fast at the moment.

Blow the .gb file into a Flash Cartridge and you can read the book at your leisure. If your cartridge has any RAM the position should be saved automatically when you switch off, so it will start at the same page next time.

Note for non-English users

If you use a language such as chinese where many characters have a wide form, remember to use the normal ascii version of the formatting characters shown above. The other forms will not work.