"Mario's Keytastrophe: Rebirth Edition" is not a remake of the original Mario's Keytastrophe from 2007, but rather a completely new game that acts as a (finished!) spiritual successor to the original. The goal was to take the concept that KT was inspired by - that is, single-screen key-to-keyhole puzzles - and create a hack using that as the entire foundation. I think that the style I've chosen here more accurately reflects modern design standards, so I'm hoping people will enjoy it. I have also tried to make it speedrunner-friendly by including a timer on the map, as well as multiple paths for both 100% completionists and people who just want to find the quickest route to the end.
Special thanks to Koopster for the lovely overworld on such short notice, and to Medic for the timer code.
Just finished it! All exits! Final time 1:28:47 (This overworld timer is one of the best/most useful features i've ever seen in a hack!)
This is an awesome puzzle hack! The levels are mostly pretty simple but really well executed! The puzzles tend to be pretty straightforward in guiding you to the solution, yet require enough effort to be satisfying once you get them!
There's a good variety of levels and themes, as well as very creative ways of using each trick/block/sprite, making for a fresh experience from start to finish!
The overworld was really well made, it's a really nice extra touch to unlock all the paths through many different themed lands as you go through the hack!
The songs were pretty good as well, and very fitting to each level's theme!
I felt like a few levels were a bit too simple though (but i guess that's mostly because i'm used to watch CarlSagan42 play through Super Mario Maker puzzles that take 1 hour each to solve xD), but those are mostly the begginign ones, which is expected to happen.
Also, it's nice that the solutions usually aren't too strict, so sometimes we can solve a puzzle in slightly different ways.
Even though sometimes i felt there were things that aren't needed at all for the solution, i don't know if some puzzles have extra items, or if i just solved it in an unintended way :p
This hack is pretty neat. A few of us SMW speedrunners have done blind playthroughs or blind races of this hack, and I've done several speedruns using some intended strats (and some very broken and cheesed strats ) that I've practiced. I will probably continue to do runs of this hack for a little while.
The hack is very clean, the levels are well-designed, and the overworld and level titles are creative. I have a few nitpicks, however.
1. There are actually 37 exits in the game, but the star-36 shows up on the file select screen after collecting 36 OR 37 exits. I have tested this by collecting all the other exits then beating Finale and by collecting all exits except Perpetual, then beating Finale. Both scenarios result in a star-36 file. Obviously, in a speedrun completing all the exits, all 37 would be required, but it is strange that the title screen is capped at 36.
2. In certain levels, restarting the room causes Mario to instantly die. The only two levels in which I have seen this occur are Olympus (restart when the moving spikes are covering the tile on which Mario would respawn) and Indiana (restart as Mario dies).
3. When pressing L and R to reset a level room, if this is performed during a keyhole animation, the level is correctly not reset and the keyhole animation finishes (although Mario returns to his small powerup state). If L and R are pressed during an orb fanfare, the level is reset but the orb fanfare restarts, resulting in a short period of silence.
Really well made. This is what I tried to make with Lost in Puzzle Land-- except this is actually fun and you actually have to try and figure stuff out. I wish it were longer, but oh well. I'd also say that the difficulty is easy, not normal.
Also that's a really anticlimactic ending :V
A very well made and solid hack. Took me quite a while to figure out some of the puzzles in certain levels, but the moment I got them I felt very satisfied. Beating these puzzles is a great reward on its own.
When it comes to a puzzle, the most satisfying part is that "eureka moment" you have when you finally piece together the solution to the puzzle you've been stuck on for over half an hour. Most ROM hacking puzzle designers tend to accidentally omit the very thing that makes a well-designed puzzle so satisfying.
This hack is a pleasant exception to that rule.
Almost every single stage in this hack is a well-designed, deceptively simple puzzle that forces the player to think outside the box a bit. Each one will provide you with a sense of satisfaction once you complete it, and while a few of them may be a bit frustrating due to requiring some physical dexterity in addition to mental dexterity, it's certainly a fun hack to play through due to how many times you say "YES! I finally figured it out!"
If I were to criticize some things, though, it would be some slight lack of polish here and there. Graphically, the hack is very consistent within the levels. Between them can be a bit of a different story, ranging from mid-90s RPG-esque backgrounds to simplistic and cutesy tilesets. The music can be synthesized rock tunes, Mario haunted house tunes, generic ice level tunes - and each of them will use completely different sample sets, making the music choices feel a bit disjointed and less-than-cohesive. There are also a few bugs scattered across the hack, and sometimes you'll work with what you've got to solve the level and not even find the intended solution - yet beat the level anyway.
But, you could say the lack of polish and argubably inconsistent aesthetics can add to the charm of the hack, and you wouldn't be wrong. It's certainly a fun experience regardless and I'd highly recommend playing it if you're into brain teasers.