Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Save File Hacking MLP For iDevices

After my initial success writing a save-file hacker for the Android version of the MLP game, I eventually got my friend to lend me her iPad so that I could get to work on an iOS version of the hack.

Unfortunately, the iPad is running iOS 6, which means I couldn't jailbreak it to get a decrypted dump of the MLP app. This means I couldn't disassemble it and reverse engineer the derivation of the GLUID, but fortunately the iOS version saves the complete GLUID in a plist file and the rest of the save-file format is the same.

Unfortunately, non-jailbroken iDevices don't let you sideload non-market apps, which means I can't just write an easy-to-use app as I did with Android. Further, even if I did write an app just for jailbroken devices, it's not clear to me that it could modify the save-game file which exists outside of its own sandbox. Consequently, we must resort to extracting the save-file from the device, modifying it on our computer, and then pushing it back.


So without further ado, here's how you can hack your save-file on any iOS device (no jailbreaking required).




***UPDATE

Gameloft issued a DMCA takedown request of the tool to Dropbox. While I don't think DMCA applies here (the tool was original software written from scratch and contained no copyrighted content), I don't particularly feel like starting a battle over it.

If you're looking for alternative options, here are some ideas other people came up with:

https://pay.reddit.com/r/MLPIOS/comments/139tit/the_ios_hack_youve_all_been_waiting_for_all_items/

https://pay.reddit.com/r/MLPIOS/comments/1349n8/hardcore_cheating_for_tons_of_coins_and_gems/

***



See the video tutorial here:


A word of warning first: if you're not careful you can lose your saved game and then you'd have to start over! When you download your saved game in step 3, make sure you keep a copy and don't accidentally delete it.

The first thing you'll need is i-FunBox which is a free application for Windows and Mac which we'll use to pull save files off the iPad and push modified save files back onto the iPad.

Step 1) Restart your iPhone/iPad. The My Little Pony game needs to be completely shutdown, and the only reliable way I found to do that is to restart the device.

Step 2) Open up your device in i-FunBox and find the "MyLittlePony" app under "User Applications". From there, go to the Library/Preferences folder.


In this folder find the "com.gameloft.mylittlepony.plist" file. Right-click on it and select "Open".


Once it opens, you should see something like the following screenshot. You need to copy the line under GAMELOFT_GLUID. This is your GLUID, which you'll need later. Paste it into notepad or write it down somewhere.


Step 3) Still in i-FunBox under the MyLittlePony app, go to the "Documents" folder.


In this folder is your current save file, named "mlp_save.dat". Right-click on it and select "Copy to PC" to save it somewhere on your computer.


Step 4) Open Chrome and go to the save-file tool I made: <REMOVED: SEE UPDATE AT TOP>
This tool works completely in Chrome and works more-or-less in Firefox, but I'm not sure about any other browsers. If you have any trouble using it, please try Chrome.

In the tool, select the mlp_save.dat file you saved in step 3 and then in the GLUID box, paste the GLUID you copied in step 2. If you've done everything correctly, you should see the rest of the fields populate with the data from your save file.


Change the rest of the fields however you'd like, and when you're done press the "Generate New Save File" button. Chrome should save a new file to your computer (by default named "NEW_mlp_save.dat").

Step 5) Return to i-FunBox, which should still be open in the "Documents" folder of the MyLittlePony app. Start by deleting the existing mlp_save.dat file (REMEMBER WHAT I SAID AT THE TOP ABOUT KEEPING A BACKUP?).


Select "Copy From PC" and select the file you downloaded in step 4. After you've uploaded it in i-FunBox, the last step is to rename it "mlp_save.dat" to match the file you just deleted.



Step 6) Start up the game on your iPad/iPhone! The first thing you should see is the Gameloft/Hasbro logos and the loading screen (and if not, you didn't do step 1 and you need to start over from the beginning >:( ). Once the game loads, you should see the new values!

101 comments:

  1. It's also possible to completely close the App by pressing the home button twice (should show up some apps at the bottom) and then tapping and holding the MLP Icon there, until there is a red button, tap on it and it should work.

    Tested and confirmed for working

    ReplyDelete
  2. Also confirmed. Good stuff. By chance do you have an edited perl script that produces the XML and the corresponding encrypting script? I only ask because some of the values in the XML fascinate me and I'd love to tinker with them. If you don't want to clutter up this post, you can email me if you like.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm stuck at the open part... can I use what you highlighted?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, I found out you can't. I just used notepad, to get it.

      Delete
  4. Thank you very much for that nice tutorial, even more so for supporting the tool to edit the savegame.

    Out of pure interest, how did you decompress/decompile the mlp_save.dat file? Did you just looked at the changes made when the amount of bits/gems changes?

    Yours sincerly, a fellow brony,

    Thunder Rush

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There was actually quite a bit more to it than that. I've got a whole post dedicated to the technical details.

      Delete
    2. Yep, I just noticed that one. Thank you for explaining it so detailed.

      Delete
  5. It tries to open files using Adobe, and then tells me it can't read them. Is there any way to fix that?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hmm, in Chrome on Mac, I'm just getting a 19-byte file as output.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FYI, the content of the file is

      [object Uint8Array]

      only.

      Delete
  7. I've tried opening "com.gameloft.mylittlepony.plist" in Notepad (because it wouldn't open it as it's shown above) and it looked totally different to the screenshots.

    How the hell do I open it to look at the script?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's XML so it should open with any sort of text editor capable of that. I personally use Notepad++ for everything like that, but Internet Explorer will work too.

      Delete
  8. My computer won't allow me to open "com.gameloft.mylittlepony.plist" in anything other than QuickTime PictureViewer. Is there any way I can fix this?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Never mind, I got that fixed. Now my issue is with the new file: it's saving as .part instead of .dat, which is making my game reset.

      Delete
    2. I'm getting a .part file as well. Have you found a solution?

      Delete
    3. Ok, it seems if you just rename the .part file appropriately, everything works fine. Thanks!

      Delete
  9. You are a gentleman, sir-I've had to explain to my kid why we won't be seeing Rainbow Dash for a while-this game's paywall was ridiculously high. I threw them some money initially-but let's get real-let me play the game.

    Again, thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I used a different method of 'hacking' on the game and I am up to level 60 and have got most of the main ponies including rarity, will this restart my game that i already have or will it stay as it is???

    ReplyDelete
  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  12. https://dl.dropbox.com/s/6utmw6l9wnpsnuv/mlp_hack.html isnt working... Restricted Content
    This file is no longer available due to a takedown request under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act by Gameloft Inc.. Learn more about Dropbox's copyright policy.
    Another link?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yea, Gameloft issued a DMCA takedown of the tool. While I don't think it's a legitimate use of the DMCA, I don't really want to antagonize them by just re-uploading it. Sorry. :(

      Delete
  13. Melknin, i know it's difficult for us to make an appeal here.. but do you mind uploading the files for one last time? i'm sorry that i didn't manage to save the HTML version of your work for it as i thought it's gonna be there for some time,

    but didn't think it would be that fast for DMCA to take it down.

    How about say for half an hour or something like that? if you don't feel it, why don't we talk about buying it from you? how much does it cost to purchase the HTML version of your work?

    It's gonna helped a lot of MLP gamers out there. Melknin, please reconsider the options given. Considering the things you're facing with, just help us for the last time, please?

    Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can find a link to the removed HTML at Reddit's /r/MLPIOS subforum.

      Delete
  14. Agreeing with snowfoot. I put off using this hack for ages and thought as a birthday treat i'd give in and use it...only to find it has disappeared!
    It can always be emailed/pm-ed to people.

    What a crappy 21st birthday :(

    ReplyDelete
  15. I really hate so see this go. It was a very simple solution to get around Gameloft's ridiculous prices and as of right now it was my only solution. I've tried the other hacks and I cannot for the life of me get them to work. There's one step I can't get by and there is little to no information on how to make it work. I can continue to try to work on them, but I feel like I'm going to be ripping out my hair in the process.

    I'd be forever grateful it if you could send some of us the HTML version of your page. It really was a lifesaver for a lot of us.

    If you can't or won't, then I'd just like to thank you for even doing this in the first place.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Not sure if it makes any problems melknin. If yes, please feel free to delete the post.

    http://pastebin.com/987aiKcR
    Copy the whole code. Create new .txt document. Paste the code into it. Save as --> All files. Put .html after the filename. Doubleclick the new file, open with your Browser of choice.

    Have a nice and productive day. Work harder, not smarter.

    Yours sincerly,

    A fellow Brony,
    Thunder Rush.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi there Thunder Rush,

      Thanks for the coding which was done by melknin and thank you as well for saving the coding.

      I'm going to try it out later and get back on the reports of it.

      Thank you.

      Delete
    2. Hi ThunderDash,

      Just here to report back.

      Thank you as it works for me. Be sure to use the web browser as Google chrome. it's much easier and please follow the instructions given by melknin.

      Thank you once again.

      Delete
    3. Always a pleasure. But my post was about how to get the inital .html file for step 4, not about all what melknin did.

      Once again, all Credit goes to him.
      And I checked about the DMCA, by the way. Yes, it is illegal (If you want to give credits to an absolut insane law, which is just idiotic) since you made a program that was able to modify their mental property. Which is, per definition, not allowed. But...it is still a greyzone.

      Yours sincerly,

      Thunder Rush.

      Delete
    4. oh god... thank you so much!!!! God bless you!!!

      Delete
    5. This is probably a terrifically silly question, but what am I doing wrong if opening the saved .html file in Chrome just results in a browser window full of code?

      Delete
    6. acorntea, i'll be glad to help but please read the comments i've made below.

      Thank you.

      Delete
    7. Okay, I've gotten all the way to the editing stage, but it won't let me save the new file to my computer. Chrome keeps telling me to reselect the save file, even though I've already done that.

      Delete
    8. It also crashes chrome 99% of the time, as soon as I paste the string from the plist file.

      Delete
  17. would it be possible to get a hand on the code you used just so i can understand what you did? if possible please email me at stevchenkingrad117@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  19. can't seem to find my GLUID. My result from opening the "com.gameloft.mylittlepony.plist" file doesn't look the same? Any help? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Would it be possible for you to email me the program you uploaded to dropbox? mlponyswag@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a great idea!
      AppleW1200@gmail.com

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. I'll filled up the request here, but in return, do the following

      1. Credit or at least thanked the creator for it. He spent 4-5 days to code it while a "thank you" from you costed only 10 seconds ?

      2. Do reply back to my mail stating that you've received it. I sent it "stevchenkingrad117@gmail.com" previously and all i've gotten is no reply on whether did that person received it or not.

      3. I won't send till i see people replied back in here.

      Thank you for your co-operation.

      Delete
    4. Could you please send me the program? I would be very grateful. Thanks in advance. Gunbunny135@icloud.com

      Delete
  21. A copy of the code would be much appreciated!
    xeodeus@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  22. Could you send me the program? Thanks! :D
    ozcammy@Gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  23. Wow, I feel kinda terrible, but would you be able to send it again? I accidentally cleared my spambox and as it was deleting all the messages I noticed yours but by then it was too late! D:
    ozcammy@Gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. Could I have a copy of the program as well?

    xshekerax@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  25. Hey I've been looking at this and it looks like a lot of use so if it would be possable to send me the program I would be most grateful, thank you very much in advance.

    Nightwing Feostfang

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would probably be useful if I actually put my email here xD Nightwing-frostfang@live.co.uk
      Again thank you very much in advance

      Nightwing frostfang

      Delete
  26. It seems the last update broke the Save Data hack

    ReplyDelete
  27. It's very sad that Hearth Warming's Eve update killed Pony Liberator : (
    Could I kindly ask for the program before I update it?
    A hundred thanks to your kindness.

    my e-mail:
    mmoney88888@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  28. Will this work with the Hearth's Warming Eve update, or am I SOL? If it doesn't work, is there any other way to do this?

    ReplyDelete
  29. I've tried using it with the HWE update, but when I select the save file and paste in my GLUID the browser just freezes for a while before showing a window of code with an error.

    I've done this step by step, even downloaded Chrome to use it in that. Anyone got any ideas? I'd hate to have to stop playing after they killed Ponyliberator too.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Same results here. Hopefully sombody is working on it!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Could you make it private/shared on dropbox and share it with people who request it?

    ReplyDelete
  32. So, I couldn't manage to make the tool work on the updated one, but i hunted around my computer for a bit and found the old version of the app in my recycle bin, I can probably e-mail you the file but if your ipod already has the opdated version you have to restart your account.
    stevchenkingrad117@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  33. I've tried a few different things but the hack is definately expired. Anyone know how to contact the original creator to see if they can make an updated version?

    I've also searched around the web and I can only see one other place that claims to have a hack for the app since this update. And that's: http://socialgameshack.com/my-little-pony-bits-and-gems-hack/

    However I haven't been able to download it because of the way its locked by surveys. If anyone finds a way to download it and knows that it works, please upload a copy somewhere else so that everyone can access it.

    ReplyDelete
  34. It seems like they changed the Crypt Algorythm in the new Update. A save file i saved before the Update opens perfectly. A save file from after the update only gives me invalid xml. Do you think you can crack the new one again?

    ReplyDelete
  35. hi Melknin,

    able to email the file 'save-file tool" that you made for Chrome to my gmail account at nokiawiz@gmail.com? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Melknin, yet to receive the file, thanks.

      Delete
  36. New algorithm for the update. Will you work on the new algorithm?

    ReplyDelete
  37. Hello there ! First of all, thanks for that amazing post and thanks for helping us to do this :)

    I was wondering if somebody could just send me the "save-file tool" for Chrome because that's the only thing missing :/

    My e-mail adress : leav57@hotmail.fr

    Thank you in advance and have a wonderful day :) x

    ReplyDelete
  38. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  39. Hi i downloaded the file before but since recently clearing out my pc it has vanished could i get another copy sent to rudamon@live.ca please it would be greatly appreciated. :)

    ReplyDelete
  40. Could someone please send me a copy of the programme as well? I can't see paying 280$ just to beat the game.

    Thnvks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  41. Just a reminder to people looking at this. This program no longer works. Since the winter wrap-up update, the file hasn't worked.

    ReplyDelete
  42. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  43. Could you please send me the save file editor? I'd greatly appreciate it
    jordanlp@mac.com

    ReplyDelete
  44. I got the update where Rainbow Dash is in the app icon now. Is because of the new version that the MLP save hacker does not run longer? Because I upload the .dat file, paste the GLUID, but the fields keep empty. I tried by filling them with the amounte I desired, but when I try to generate the new save, a window appears telling me to select (or renselect the .dat file)

    Would anyone be so nice to send me by email a Documents folder with the hacked files please? It doesn't matter if it's on level 1 with just 1 or 2 tasks completed, since that's the point, but at least it has enough fragments of each element in order to activate all the harmony stones and enough gems to buy all-or several- gem-price ponies it will be alright.

    My mail is marx.ssj5@hotmail.com

    Any help will be appreciated.

    ReplyDelete
  45. could you send me that program? please. С:
    mail- glam13kitty@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  46. Can I get the save file editor please? Btw, very nice tuto! william-pc-@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  47. Could you please email this to me as well? My email is: yugioh557@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  48. Would you mind to send the save file editor to me please? email is: gam3r4u@hotmail.com

    Many thanks in return!

    ReplyDelete
  49. Could you please send me the tool to creudence@hotmail.com? Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  50. can i get a coppy to plutoe.0@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  51. Would you mind to send the save file editor to me? Please. Reckon@freemail.hu

    ReplyDelete
  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  53. Can I get a copy? potatoxmosher@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  54. Can I get a copy? erdelyi.donat@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  55. dude, when you send me that *** programm???

    ReplyDelete
  56. Hey I hope I can get one.
    divinea30@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  57. Anyone mind sending an updated version to me? allen007@embarqmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  58. hey can someone please send me an updated version to me/ kiwibull@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  59. Good Morning. I have a small problem. When i paste the GUILD a text shows up saying to verify if the GUILD is correct and it wont let me create the new save data. Thank you for your help.

    ReplyDelete
  60. I don't have a "mlp_save.dat" file anywhere, I've had the app since early June and I've still been looking for it but no luck...

    ReplyDelete
  61. please, send me tool!

    graermelissa@yandex.ru

    ReplyDelete
  62. Can't send me this tool? But, this works on Iron Man 3 game? If working send me the tool or send me save files.

    duriyudha@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  63. Hey Peeps ... Got a 5 yr old and 2 yr old that really want to keep this game going but I cant afford all the gems -.- would it be possible to get that program as well? I tried to find my GLUID code and it wasnt there and I couldnt find the save mlp file either! I also tried that unlimited gem hack which no longer works with iOS 7. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry ... my email is kawika07@gmail.com

      Delete
  64. Is there a way to edit save game for xcom ios? I know there is some savegame created on the internet, but is there a way I can do it by myself? what i need? thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  65. May I ask you for the tool you used for coding the MLP-app?

    lolmachine@web.de

    ReplyDelete