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Yet Another Mario Hack
Forum Index - Sunken Ghost Ship - C3 Museum - Summer 2021 - Yet Another Mario Hack
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Salvete, omnes; this is imamelia, also known as TheMartianGeek...I mean, hello, C3 patrons of SMW Central. I actually have something to show off this time, and that is a hack that I've been working on for a while, simply called Yet Another Mario Hack. I originally had not been planning to show it off or make it available until it was completely finished, but then other people who already knew about it brought it up, and I thought maybe it wouldn't be that big of a deal, and it would give me something to show that people would actually be interested in. Besides, this is the farthest I've ever gotten on a hack since I started, early world 5 and almost halfway through, so I figured I can't quit working on this. There's not much of a story, just the standard "go save Peach from Bowser", but there are plenty of custom assets, including graphics, music, patches, blocks, sprites, bosses, HDMA, and miscellaneous ASM. So let's get to the screenshots, shall we?


This is the titlescreen. Mario's movement has not been changed yet, so don't stay here too long, lest you die and softlock. I was actually having trouble getting the titlescreen moves recording ASM to work; I don't know what I was doing wrong, but Lunar Magic wouldn't accept the SNES9X savestate that I gave it (and it doesn't help that I can't get SNES9X to run at full speed anyway), and ZMZ didn't seem to work at all.


Here's the first part of the overworld map. All the events are already triggered because I took the screenshots on a file with all the levels already passed.

1-1

1-1 is a pretty basic grassland level, as the first one tends to be. I tried to make this one at least a bit more interesting than the typical 1-1, though, not too flat and with some Spinies.


Also, event switches from Peach's Quest: A Princess Story are back. This one spawns some blocks that you can use to reach a Yoshi coin. I used Katrina's message box patch because the originals were too limiting and I didn't really need the VWF one.

1-2

1-2 is an "athletic grassland" level, similar to 1-2 in SMB3. It has Monty Moles and Rexes, as well as a few moving platforms.


I decided to add a small pause screen to this hack. Originally, it had used the SMB3 status bar, but I found that that tended to get in the way of things that I wanted to do. In my experience, status bars in general are more trouble than they're worth, at least in SMW hacks. Yoshi's Island didn't have one and got along just fine.

1-3

1-3 is an underground level, with the typical enemies.


The Goombas can come in groups, and their palette is different from aboveground levels, just like in SMB1.

1-Fort

Again, it's a pretty standard level, introducing some typical fortress/castle enemies.


The boss is Boom Boom, who is not quite as pathetic as he was in SMB3, but this early in the game, he's not too hard.

1-4

1-4 is the first athletic level, with some flying Koopas and simple moving platforms.

1-5

1-5 is another grassland level and introduces Baron Von Zeppelins...


...as well as Venus Fire Traps. It also has some YI-style "cross section" parts (one level of very few; most tilesets don't have those).

1-A

1-A is an athletic level based on SMB1-style scale platforms.


It has turn block bridges as well.

1-Castle

The world 1 castle introduces a couple more fortress and castle enemies.


It also introduces Tap-Taps and Mildes in the second section.


The boss is Morton, who is pretty easy, but he is the first boss.


He can jump and spit fireballs.


When you hit him, he becomes invincible for a while and starts shooting out arcs of round fireballs. Most bosses in this game have an "angry" phase after being hit, which usually increases in difficulty after the second hit.

2-1

World 2 is a desert, which 2-1 follows, including some SMB3 elements such as Pile Driver Micro Goombas and Fire Snakes...


...as well as these pipe structures.

Yellow Switch Palace

Yes, the switch palaces are here. Just the standard four. I'm not showing the others because they tend to be rather boring to look at, but this is what graphics I used for them, anyway.

2-2

2-2 is another underground level, this time introducing Chargin' Chucks.


A few levels in the game also have dark areas with the Layer 3 spotlight effect from Yoshi's Island, such as this one.


This level also introduces Nippers and growing/shrinking pipes.

2-3

2-3 is an athletic level on a bridge, where the enemies are Super Koopas and you get to use a cape for the first time.


It's pretty short, but it does serve as an introduction to those two things, as well as these numbered platforms from YI. Capes are much rarer in this game than they are in vanilla SMW because of how powerful they are. Maybe I should have nerfed them.

2-Ghost House

The first ghost house in the game is pretty simple, introducing some basic ghost house concepts. There's a part in the middle where you have to pick the right doors.


Also, Akaginite's Boo ring is much better than the original (though probably slower) and lets you do things like this.

2-4

2-4 is another desert level with some Tap-Taps.


It also has Pokeys and quicksand (even though that isn't actually in deserts...video game logic).

2-5

2-5 starts out with the Angry Sun. I think I tried disassembling it from SMB3 and then ended up just using Sonikku's. I did add some code to allow it to respawn, though.


The second part of the level is a SMB3-esque pipe structure maze.

2-A

I decided to set 2-A inside a pyramid...and if you're going to make a pyramid level in a Mario hack, what better game to take inspiration from than SMB2?


It even has a Phanto chase in the second room.


And some SMB2-style Sparkies in the third.

2-Castle

The first room of the world 2 castle has moving Layer 2 objects.


The second, meanwhile, introduces Roto-Discs.


The boss is Lemmy, who shoots balls out of his pipes that do different things depending on their color. After each round of attacks or being hit, he'll shuffle the pipe colors. He'll always finish each round by coming out of the only pipe that doesn't have a matching one of the same color. One limitation that I had with the bosses in this game is that they were all based on existing graphics, and since there are no complete custom Koopaling sets (that I know of), I had to use either the vanilla ones or the SMB3 ones, and the former seemed to fit better and had a few more animation frames. Among other things, this meant that Lemmy couldn't do anything that would require him to have a bottom half, so he pretty much had to still be in a pipe (or vehicle, Lakitu cloud, etc.).


Here's the world 2 overworld, if you care to see.

3-1

World 3 is a forest, so 3-1 has things like Wigglers and Lakitus around.


It's also the first level with Yoshi, who is also much rarer in this game than the original. I almost didn't include Yoshi because he tends to require extra micromanaging just like status bars do, but I ended up putting him in but restricting him to those levels only.


And speaking of things restricted to certain levels, you can sometimes find treasure chests like this that give you an item in the item box. If it's anything besides the standard mushroom, flower, or feather, it's only available for the level that you got it in, mainly to prevent anything being taken to a level that wasn't designed for it and breaking things.

3-2

3-2 is an athletic level with the SMB3 spinning red platform sprite. It also introduces Biddybuds, which I made for SMW. There really aren't enough general-purpose flying enemies in SMW, and the Biddybuds can have a variety of different behaviors and movement patterns, so they come in handy.

3-Fort

The World 3 fortress starts off with a climbing net section (isn't it more of a fence than a net?). I was going to include the revolving doors here, but they couldn't be used at the same time as the Ball 'n' Chains because of sprite memory conflicts. Maybe they'll show up in a future fortress or castle (or even outside of them, since the fence graphics aren't tileset-specific).


In the second room, we have Layer 3 smashers, a custom sprite version that's a lot more flexible than the original to boot. I do wish I had custom graphics for these, though; the original ones are kind of ugly, but they're all that I have.


This time, the boss is Pom Pom. (Why yes, I did simply palette-swap Boom Boom's graphics and copy-paste Birdo's bow over them. Why do you ask?) She can throw fireballs and do this dash attack.

3-3

3-3 is a grassland level that introduces Volcano Lotuses and these wide blocks. It's also the level shown on the titlescreen.


It introduces parachute enemies and Shysters as well.

3-4

3-4, meanwhile, has Lakitu and exploding blocks...


...and Flutters, which I don't see very often in hacks (I guess they are pretty dangerous compared to their source game, though).

3-A

3-A is a poisonous swamp (since every Mario game has to have those now) with Scuttlebugs and sprites in bubbles. The Scuttlebug is another sprite newly coded for this game. My thanks to Skewer for the graphics. He also did the Biddybud and the next new sprite we'll see shortly.


Another new sprite is the Stingby, which I have to admit didn't make the transition as easily as the Scuttlebug did, coming from a 3D game. In the secret exit path of this level, the poison rises and falls.

3-B

3-B introduces these timed platforms, which were only in one level in the original game, and blue Para-Koopas that fly in a circle or ellipse. The Timed Lift sprite is much more customizable than the vanilla one.

3-Secret Ghost House

There is one secret ghost house and one secret fortress in the game. This one starts out simple enough, just with a couple new enemies.


In the second room, though, we have Mega Man-style appearing/disappearing blocks. This part originally had a completely different design; I wanted to do a rotating Mode 7 room (much like the one in the haunted house level in The Great Circus Mystery), but I decided that it was all too much of a nuisance to set up and I wasn't familiar enough with Mode 7 to figure out how it could work. You can fight a Big Boo Boss in this level, if you can find him.

3-C

3-C is the first water level of, honestly, pretty few. There not only aren't many underwater levels in the game, there are barely even any aboveground levels with water in them. I find them hard to design and hard to make fun. I did at least try to take advantage of the type for this one and have it go up, down, and around. This was made before Lunar Magic 3 came out, but if I'd had that, I might have made the level taller as well.

3-Castle

The World 3 castle is outside, starting out in an area filled with brambles.


In the second room, we have Lemon Drops, which you have to watch out for while also avoiding Grinders and other traps.


The boss is Roy. He has the widest variety of attacks of any boss in the game so far, but he's probably too hard for world 3, so I might move him to a later castle.


Among other things, he can cause sparks when he stomps the ground, and he can flash different colors and do different things depending on the color. When he flashes red, he'll dash into the wall and cause fire to fall from the ceiling.

4-1

World 4 has a mountain theme. 4-1 has Sumo Brothers and Shysters, among other things.


It also introduces Hammer Brothers.

4-2

4-2 is an underground level with scrolling Layer 2 objects. It also has enemies that walk on the ceiling, which I actually probably shouldn't have put in a level with scrolling Layer 2 objects.


Here, you can see a Shell Bro and a Mega Mole.

4-3

4-3 is a sewer level, complete with Mario Bros. enemies. This is the first one that really takes advantage of Lunar Magic 3's new level dimensions.


It has a fair number of enemies from Yoshi's Island as well. I made the Nipper spores.


There were a couple of on/off switches earlier in the level, but here, you can use it to choose which of 2 paths to take.


The second room has the first key coin challenge. This first one is a freebie, but there are 4 more to get before you can exit the level.

4-Fort

Well, he had to show up sooner or later. 4-Fortress begins with a Magikoopa section. Be careful when there are Grinders getting in the way too.


The second part is a vertical climb with some wall-following sprites. It's actually the only vertical level in the hack so far. I was considering not using them at all because they're so janky, but Lunar Magic 3 at least made them a lot easier to use (but not much easier to design).


At the end, we face Boom Boom again, and this time, he can fly...and is living up to his name.

4-4

Now here's an interesting one. 4-4 is like Chocolate Island 2, where the number of coins and Yoshi coins you collect and the time you take to get through the level changes which rooms you go to (and since the hack doesn't use the regular timer, I added a custom one to keep track), but this time, it tracks two of those stats at once, so each screen exit can take you to any one of 4 different sublevels.


You can end up dealing with sloped ledges and Super Koopas...


...or a bunch of green bouncing Koopas...


...or the dreaded Pitchin' Chuck, or any of 9 other possible areas, some of which might look familiar and some of which are all-new. And, of course, there's the secret exit to consider.

4-5

4-5 is a nighttime athletic level with a variety of elements, including Beezos, Carrot Top Lifts, and line-guided sprites.


Later on, there's a Bullet Bill generator and some more YI number platforms. Incidentally, I had a heck of a time finding good music for this level, and I'm still not sure that my choice fits all that well. Does anyone know of a good unsampled general-purpose dark athletic theme?

4-Ghost House

The World 4 ghost house has a couple new enemies...


...but the important part is this big room, where there are many ways to go, some more productive than others. Remember that not all paths are visible.


If you're on the route to the normal exit, you'll end up in this room with the big green ghostly bubbles.

4-6

We're closing out the levels on the main path of world 4 with a pretty straightforward one. 4-6 introduces Dino-Rhinos and Dino-Torches, the main enemies of this one. I'd always thought that they were very underused in vanilla SMW. Sure, they take up a lot of spriteset space, but they were in, what, 2 levels? And not even most of the second one. The game is supposed to take place in Dinosaur Land...why aren't there more dinosaurs?

4-A

It's everyone's favorite[citation needed] powerup from SMB3, Kuribo's Shoe. I tried to fix the bugs with it but wasn't completely successful. Well, 4-A focuses on it, and it might well be a breather compared to some of the other levels.


Baron von Zeppelins are back, too.

4-B

This level took me forever to finish. 4-B is a temple/ruins kind of level, and it brings back Pansers and introduces Buster Beetles.


The main new enemy here, however, is these Potion Bros. They throw different potions that have a variety of effects when they hit a surface and don't necessarily always throw the same kind. Red potions spawn enemies, blue ones spawn helpful sprites, yellow ones spawn fireballs, and green ones spawn blocks. There are also orange and purple potions, but you won't see those in this level.


If you're on the path to the normal exit, you'll get to ride these friendly Mega Moles across spikes. Some of them are faster, and some of them mimic your jumps.


If you're on the secret exit path, on the other hand, you'll end up here, where there are moving blocks (some sprite, some Layer 2) and Roto-Discs with more difficult patterns than those found in the world 2 castle. This is the main reason the level took so long (well, this and implementing all of the different behaviors for the Bros.). This was originally planned to be a Mode 2 area, where the moving parts of the foreground would be on the same layer as the main part of the foreground, but I could not get it to work no matter how hard I tried, even with the help of someone else who'd worked with it, so I just ended up making it a regular Layer 2 level. SMW really does not like using BG modes other than 1.

4-Castle

The World 4 castle has a few new things, most notably these spiked platforms from Yoshi's Island. Hitting a switch of the same color will cause all platforms that match it to flip. They actually weren't as hard to code as I expected, but they weren't effortless either. (Honestly, the biggest problem was figuring out tile offsets for the graphics routine...I used Dyzen for the first time, but I found it pretty clunky. Whatever, it all worked out in the end.) You can also see a Ghost Guy and a Power Thwomp here.


Well, that's certainly a big Firebar. And did someone say Bowser statues?


Sometimes, enemies can trigger the platforms flipping at intervals, so you have to be careful timing jumps.


Larry, the boss, fights you on a line guide. He can throw different types of balls at you, as well as Grinders (which don't do a very good job attaching to the line guides, but I definitely blame SMW being SMW for that).

5-1

World 5, if you couldn't tell already, is the ice world. Naturally, 5-1 introduces the typical ice-themed enemies, such as this Flurry and Ice Bro, whose projectiles I can never decide if they should freeze and hurt you or just freeze you.


We also have Bumpties. Be careful when they're near pits and icy platforms.


Or Spikes, for that matter. Those aren't a snow/ice enemy, but they're pretty general-purpose. Anyway, there aren't many snow/ice enemies in Mario games, especially the 16-bit ones. In particular, how the heck was SMB3's ice world the longest one in the game, yet it didn't include a single actual ice-themed enemy?

5-2

And here is where we end things off. 5-2 is not finished, but it's another athletic level. The gimmick of this one is these mushrooms, which will grow and shrink horizontally or vertically.

Now, in addition to seeing all of these levels, you will also get to try the hack out for yourself. Fair warning...it is not in a releasable state. There are definitely still some bugs and slowdown, some features aren't fully implemented, and some levels probably aren't balanced very well. I'm far enough along that I probably won't submit a demo to the hack section; I'll just go until the entire hack is finished and submit that. If you still want to play it now, though, here is the download link.

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I'm working on a hack! Check it out here.
Oh goodness, you're making your stuff public? I'm excited to see where this goes! I really like your pause screen. It's a small touch but really good for quality of life.
Fanatical like a Demon
Definitely needa play this as I've heard some good things about it from others in our chat. Nice to see you release something!
Major thanks to Suika Ibuki for layout!
SMAS Soundtrack Status: 100% finished
YI Soundtrack Status: 100%
YI Unsampled Soundtrack Status: 100%
NSMB Soundtrack Status: 7.89%
Killer Instinct Soundtrack Status: 14.63%
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I have not beaten the first world yet.

I like the ideas of this hack. Lots of QoL improvements like the pause menu and the scroll up/down camera. I also loved the use of unsampled music, the use of SMB3 or Gamma V graphic style. Plus some interesting ideas with the sprites like YI sprites.

I also noticed some oddities, some graphical bugs I can't seem to explain in some levels backgrounds, the bug occurs upon exiting a pipe from secondary entrance. It was in 1-3 and 1-5.

I'll try playing some more later. It is very promising, thanks for bringing it.

Oh! I've also noticed, the SMB1 scale platforms, is it a feature unique to your hack or something that can be found in the sprites section???

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I really like how each level has it's own thing going for it.
It just looks like an all-round fun experience which I'm happy to give a go as I quite the look of certain levels and their gimmicks.

I do hope you manage to finish the full hack as it'll be great to see the complete thing fully done and finished for good.
Does the Kuribo Shoe still have that "Double Jump" glitch?

It's kinda fun to do/use. #smrpg{sick}
Originally posted by Darkbloom
Oh goodness, you're making your stuff public? I'm excited to see where this goes! I really like your pause screen. It's a small touch but really good for quality of life.

Yeah, I thought I could try giving it more public attention.

Originally posted by LadiesMan217
Definitely needa play this as I've heard some good things about it from others in our chat. Nice to see you release something!

Yes, you should.

Originally posted by qantuum
I have not beaten the first world yet.

I like the ideas of this hack. Lots of QoL improvements like the pause menu and the scroll up/down camera. I also loved the use of unsampled music, the use of SMB3 or Gamma V graphic style. Plus some interesting ideas with the sprites like YI sprites.

I was actually wondering if I should change the camera scrolling. Its intention was to prevent blind jumps, and it was more useful back when I was using the SMB3 status bar, but now it's less necessary since you can see more of the screen, and it sometimes scrolls when you don't want it to, such as when you're just ducking on a platform. Perhaps I could make it also require holding another button, such as L/R or X, in addition to up/down?

Originally posted by qantuum
I also noticed some oddities, some graphical bugs I can't seem to explain in some levels backgrounds, the bug occurs upon exiting a pipe from secondary entrance. It was in 1-3 and 1-5.

I'll try playing some more later. It is very promising, thanks for bringing it.

Is that bug the one where sometimes one of the blocks in the level turns into glitched graphics? I noticed that first in one of the 4-4 sublevels. No idea what causes it, though.

Originally posted by qantuum
Oh! I've also noticed, the SMB1 scale platforms, is it a feature unique to your hack or something that can be found in the sprites section???

There are scale platforms in the sprites section, but as far as I know, none of them behave like the ones in SMB1 or like these. These have a rare bug that can happen as well, where if they move just right (or wrong) around subscreen boundaries, they can cause half a tile of rope to appear missing. It's hard enough to trigger that I haven't had much luck debugging it.

Originally posted by 1UPdudes
I really like how each level has it's own thing going for it.
It just looks like an all-round fun experience which I'm happy to give a go as I quite the look of certain levels and their gimmicks.

I do hope you manage to finish the full hack as it'll be great to see the complete thing fully done and finished for good.
Does the Kuribo Shoe still have that "Double Jump" glitch?

It's kinda fun to do/use. #smrpg{sick}

Yeah, like I said, I'm really hoping to actually finish this one, since it's the most progress I've ever made on a hack. My previous record was Mario's Mushroom Quest way back in 2009, which made it to 4-1, then I had a later one called SMB4+1 that left off in world 3, and I don't think any other hack I've made has gotten past world 2. And what "double jump" glitch? Where you can walk off a platform and then jump in mid-air? I think that might actually have been coded in intentionally.

Thanks for the replies, everyone.

Oh, I should mention that the hack will have 95 levels, and I'll be targeting bsnes, or at least, I've exclusively been testing and playing it in bsnes v115 and bsnes-plus v073 (RIP Near). I don't have a flash cart.

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I'm working on a hack! Check it out here.
I remember how you have showcased some of your stuff and they also look interesting so it's nice to see you showcasing things again.

Originally posted by imamelia
I decided to add a small pause screen to this hack. Originally, it had used the SMB3 status bar, but I found that that tended to get in the way of things that I wanted to do. In my experience, status bars in general are more trouble than they're worth, at least in SMW hacks. Yoshi's Island didn't have one and got along just fine.

That makes me remember that I planned to code a custom pause screen not different to the one in Yoshi's Island.

Originally posted by imamelia
Is that bug the one where sometimes one of the blocks in the level turns into glitched graphics? I noticed that first in one of the 4-4 sublevels. No idea what causes it, though.

That reminds me of Juzcook's video about my latest CLDC where one of the blocks randomly appeared to be glitched but only on his side.
I haven't actually gotten around to playing this yet, as I've been too busy with my own project, but I do like the way it looks. The heavy use of my graphics is definitely appreciated, and I'm sure the difficulty will be reasonable. You're no Kaizocon after all.

Originally posted by imamelia
This is the titlescreen. Mario's movement has not been changed yet, so don't stay here too long, lest you die and softlock. I was actually having trouble getting the titlescreen moves recording ASM to work; I don't know what I was doing wrong, but Lunar Magic wouldn't accept the SNES9X savestate that I gave it (and it doesn't help that I can't get SNES9X to run at full speed anyway), and ZMZ didn't seem to work at all.

This is why I prefer doing static title screens. XD I'd rather not have to deal with that issue, and ZSNES is deprecated scrap.

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Quintesson Judge: Silence, or you will be held in contempt of this court!
Hot Rod: I have nothing but contempt for this court!
- Transformers the Movie (1986)


Played through it and while I really enjoyed the ASM stuff and graphics, it just wasn't very fun. Enemies are basically non-existent and the levels are really flat. This leaves most of them in the situation where you can easily just run through them with 0 issues a lot of them time. Attempts for variations, such as 1-4, just felt bland.
It seems like you spent more time trying to make it look impressive while completely ignoring actual level design. If that was the point to lean in to the "Another Hack" aspect then ig it works, but I just can't see this being any good unless you rly overhaul the levels.
Some advice I can give is this: if the player can reach top speed for long periods of time with little effort, you're doing something wrong.

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