In this tutorial I am showing you how to create a Custom Bubble that then runs a PSP game of your choice!
This works on the fat PS Vita, Slim PS Vita, PSV TV and up to firmware 3.36, but also works on earlier firmwares (like 3.18, 3.20, etc).
If you prefer a video tutorial, feel free to watch this long video. I am explaining everything and every step you have to do. The following wall of text is only for the people that prefer a text turorial.
If you prefer said text tutorial, keep reading.
Before we start, you need a random PSP game as base game (really, any!), this also includes the usage of minis, 3.18 exploit games and pretty much any PSP game you can get from the PSN store.
The size of the base game is not relevant anymore. You could use a 5MB Minis to sign a 1.7GB ISO file. There are pretty much no weird restrictions like they were with fake_np and the VHBL Bubble.
Before we start, we need a few things. We need a game we want to sign (so a PSP ISO) – I do not link you any of these illegal psp pirated games, create your own backups or be a pirate and download them yourself, I don’t judge you.
Unpack all the ZIP files and put all the content into one folder (e.g. call it sign_np). Inside of the folder you should have a sign_np.exe (shorten the name to this, if the sign_np file of yours has a longer name), PkgView.exe, your PSP ISO of choice and a PSN decrypter folder (which contains a readme.txt and 3 exe-files).
If you can confirm this, we can continue with gathering the necessary XPD and PKG files. Visit this Sony Website and login with your PSN account.
Then head to the Media category and click onto the games category. Now search the PSP game you want to use as a base game. If you found it, press download and that will give you an XPD-file (these XPD-file download links might not be visible, depending on your web browser).
Now open the XPD-file with NotePad++ (or any other kind of Editor) and copy the link that is inside of this file. Paste this link into your web browser and press enter. A download for a PKG-file should now start.
Be also sure to copy the “CID” of your XPD-file and place that CID into a simple text document (call it “‘base games name’ CID and keys.txt”). After you did this, you are done with the XPD-file.
Next drop the PKG file of your base game into the sign_np folder. Then open PKGView.exe and open the PKG file with it. Once opened, open the USRDIR and CONTENT folder inside of the PKGView.exe. Then right-click the EBOOT.PBP file and extract it.
After you did this, you can close PKGView.exe. Now copy the just extracted EBOOT.PBP file and move it into the PSN decrypter folder. The PSN decrypter folder should now contain 5 files: A document, 3 exe-files and your EBOOT.PBP.
Now drag & drop your EBOOT.PBP on top of the NPDPC_fixed.exe file and it should open a CMD window on its own. This will now create an ISO-file, a header.bin file and a version_key.bin file.
Now copy all these new files (header, version_key & the ISO) inside a folder inside of our sign_np folder (e.g. C:/downloads/sign_np/base_game_folder/). Next use a Hexeditor and open the version_key.bin file.
This will show you one line of hexadecimal values, which we have to copy (or type them one by one, without the spaces!). This is the key we need. Put this key into the same text document which contains the CID of your game.
After we have gathered the CID, the key of our base game and sign_np, we have all the things we need for creating our own signed EBOOT.PBP.
Next, inside of the sign_np folder, keep the shift-button pressed and then press the right mouse button. We should now have a new function inside of the context menu, which will open the CMD inside of our folder.
Now we have the CMD window opened inside of our folder direction (e.g. C:/downloads/sign_np/). Next we type the following thing into it:
sign_np -pbp ‘Your Game’.ISO EBOOT.PBP ‘your games CID’ ‘your games key’
This is the content of my folder and what I have typed into the CMD. Have this as an example:
Next, press enter and sign_np should do its work. After it is done, verify that the flags is 0x00000002. For it to work on the PS Vita, the flag has to be 2!
This is what my CMD contains after finishing the task:
ISO size: 190840832 ISO blocks: 5824 Writing ISO blocks: 100%
Forging NPUMDIMG header… ECDSA signature for NPUMDIMG header is valid! NPUMDIMG flags: 0x00000002 NPUMDIMG block basis: 0x00000010 NPUMDIMG version key: 0x36D0E3A09636FEA0329943BBEEC2CC01 NPUMDIMG header key: 0x52E97DE337D9108D206D520E8378A538 NPUMDIMG header hash: 0xC70998890CA03C6F14C1441BA7E504FF NPUMDIMG data key: 0xEF3579501AB9E43D78C9B4128F0E45F0
Depending on your PSP ISO and your base game, these values will be different, but the NPUMDIMG flags value should be 0x00000002, nothing else.
In the end you should have an EBOOT.PBP file, which we now drop into a random savedata for the PSP. Copy this savedata onto your PS Vita and then start the VHBL Bubble on your PS Vita (assuming you own the Patapon 2 exploit and have a fully working VHBL Bubble on your PS Vita).
Next, inside of VHBL, start PSPFiler 6.6 and go into the /PSP/GAME/…/ directory. Now search the ID of your base game (e.g. NPEZ00101 for Cubixx EU, or NPEG00011 for Numblast EU) and rename its folder from its original game to the very same with an additional “&” at the end (e.g. we turn /PSP/GAME/NPEZ00101/ into /PSP/GAME/NPEZ00101&/).
After we did this, create a new folder with the same name as the one we have just renamed (e.g. create a new folder inside of /PSP/GAME/ and call it NPEZ00101).
Next search for your savedata file. It should be inside of /PSP/SAVEDATA/. Now copy the EBOOT.PBP from inside of your savedata folder into the base games folder WITHOUT the “&”-symbol (e.g. in my case the NPEZ00101 folder. NOT the NPEZ00101& folder!).
After you did these things, close your VHBL Bubble and shutdown your PS Vita. Now start your PS Vita in its recovery mode (Keep PS-button + Power + R pressed while turning on the PS Vita) and rebuild the database.
After this is done, start your base game and if you did everything right, your signed game should now start (e.g. Worms starts instead of Cubixx, in my case).
If your PS Vita displays an error code, then this means that you have made a mistake somewhere.
If your PS Vita starts the game, has a blackscreen and simply returns to the Homemenu of the PS Vita (without error code!), then it means that you have done everything right, but your base game & PSP ISO are not compatible with each other.
I had to test 10 different games as base game (minis, full games, psp demos) and only found 3 ones that I could use for my signed PSP ISOs. Those were Numblast, Cubixx and Tekken 6.
So even if you do everything correct, there is the chance that it still won’t work.
I hope at least some of your were able to create your very own Custom ISO Bubbles. I wish you good luck!