Debug Mode

From Golden Sun Universe

Debug mode is a set of debugging and testing features used by Camelot Software Planning during development of both GBA Golden Sun games, which was left mostly intact in the retail versions of both games. The main features of debug mode are the ability to walk through walls, to warp to any map in the game including the Debug Rooms, and to view and modify any of the internal flags used by the game to keep track of story events.

The same debug mode also exists in Mario Golf: Advance Tour and Mario Tennis: Power Tour, as both of those games use the engine from the GBA Golden Sun games.

Accessing Debug Mode

Debug mode is disabled during normal gameplay and can only be enabled using RAM editing or a cheating device such as a GameShark or Action Replay. To enable debug mode, a non-zero byte must be written to a specific variable in RAM, which differs between games:

Game Address CodeBreaker/
GameShark SP
GameShark Advance/
Action Replay
Action Replay MAX
Golden Sun 03001F54 33001F54 0001 0EDDE147 50586B97 643789F3 ECAB35BC
Golden Sun (German) 03001F64 33001F64 0001 68B25EE9 E00CDCB7 DFF8B768 783E7268
Golden Sun: The Lost Age 03001238 33001238 0001 00D3924F 333C8C91 1B8735DA 3C2202E5
Mario Golf: Advance Tour 03001280 33001280 0001 06BCC0CB 8164414E 180AE2FD AEB6A90E
Mario Tennis: Power Tour 03001334 33001334 0001 D29C57FA C536EF57 E2A6A78C A74439E8


  • Holding L allows the player to walk anywhere, including through solid objects. The player can even walk outside the bounds of the map, although the camera will not follow them there. This feature also works on the World Map, although it's awkward to use there since holding L will just zoom out the World Map without allowing the player to move. However, if L is pressed and held while in a menu, and then the menu is closed while still holding L, it will function properly.
  • Pressing Start+Select at any time will freeze the game and enter frame-advance mode. In this mode, pressing A or B will advance the game forward by one frame at a time. Pressing Start will return the game to normal.
  • Pressing L+R during a cutscene will enter fast-forward mode. All dialogue will be automatically skipped, massively speeding up the cutscene. Pressing L+R again will return the cutscene to normal.
  • In battle, holding Start while opening the Status menu will display the enemies' stats instead of the player's. (All enemies will have Isaac's portrait and their class will be "NPC".)
  • Three extra options are added to the Start menu: "Rough menu", "Debug menu", and "Restart quest". All three have an unused trash can icon, and none of them do anything when selected.
  • On the file select screen, all files will display "(Continue from a Sanctum)" instead of the usual text. Loading a file will always start the player at the last-visited Sanctum, as if they had held L+Start.

Warp Menu

Pressing B+Start opens the warp menu, which allows the player to instantly warp to any map in the game including the Debug Rooms.

The top row controls the map ID, and the bottom row controls which warp ID within the map to warp to. Every map also has an internal name used by the developers which is displayed by this menu.

Flag Editor

Pressing B+Select opens the flag editor, which allows the player to view and edit all the flags used by the game to keep track of story events. The flags are split into 16 pages of 256 flags each, which can be navigated with L and R.

Palette Editor

Pressing L+Start opens the palette editor, which allows the player to view and edit all the background palettes currently in memory.

  • The D-Pad changes which red, green, or blue value is currently selected, though it's somewhat hard to keep track of since the cursor is invisible.
  • A and B increment and decrement the currently-selected value, respectively.
  • L and R change which palette is currently being edited.
  • Holding Start will cause the currently-selected color to flash black and white, which lets the user easily see where the color is used in-game. It also helps with the aforementioned invisble cursor.
  • Select closes the menu. This also has the side effect of resetting the UI color to the default dark blue, but opening the Settings menu will restore what it was previously set to.

Gameplay elements and mechanics
Collectables: ArtifactsBroken EquipmentClass ItemsCoinsConsumable ItemsCursed EquipmentEquipmentForgeable ItemsPsynergy ItemsQuest ItemsRusty WeaponsStat Items
Travel: BlacksmithsBoat (TLA)Boat (DD)Fortune TellersInnsItem ShopsPsynergy StonesSanctumsSummon TabletsTreasure ChestsUmbra GearWings of Anemos
Combat: AdeptsAttackBeastformBossesClassesDefendDjinn (Master List) • ElementsEnemy Abilities (GS, TLA)Enemy Abilities (DD)LevelMad PlantsMimicsMonstersPsynergyStatus ConditionsStatsSummonsUnleashes (List)
Information: AtlasDjinn GuideEncyclopediaSun SagaTravel LogUmbra MapWorld Map (GS, TLA)World Map (DD)
Minigames: ColossoLucky DiceLucky Medal FountainsLucky WheelsPsynergy Training GroundsSuper Lucky DiceTrial Road
Modes: Battle ModeEasy ModeHard ModeDebug Mode
Features: Data TransferSound TestThe Reunion
Other: Debug RoomsGlitches (GS)Glitches (TLA)Glitches (DD)Optional DungeonsRandom Number GeneratorTroubleshooting (GS, TLA) Troubleshooting (DD)Unacquirable ItemsUnacquirable PsynergyWalkthrough (GS)Walkthrough (TLA)Walkthrough (DD)