72 hour Questionable Level Design Contest!
April Fool’s is a silly time of year so we’re going to throw our first 72hoQLDC so you can put your weird, wild and wacky ideas into in SMW and release any built-up gremlin energy you have on our judges!
You've seen the 24hoSMW events that happen around these parts, this one will work just like those but since the contest is so open-ended we're giving you three times as long to work on your submissions—bonus points (there are no points) if do something cheeky for the holiday!
Good luck and have fun! Feel free to talk about the contest in the Discussion thread or in the #72hoQLDC channels on Discord
Just as in QLDC, anything goes in terms of resources you can use and modifications you can make to construct your level, but we will still have some basic rules:
- An entry must be submitted by one (1) person. No partners or co-authorship. You are free to use as many resources as you like by other people both on and off-site.
- Make your submission within the time frame of the contest. Original levels only, no submissions of pre-existing levels.
- Only submissions that are Standard, at any level of any difficulty, are allowed. Avoid making Kaizo levels as they are not appropriate to the contest.
- No more than one (1) entry per entrant with no more than one (1) exit.
- Give us an anonymized entry. We're keeping the author names from the judges but joke names or pseudonyms are encouraged.
- Use of MSU-1 is not permitted for technical and copyright reasons.
- Softlocks, hardlocks or crashes that are deliberate are disallowed.
The following are grounds for immediate disqualification:
- Including a ROM file as part of your submission.
- Posting an .ips patch instead of a .bps patch.
- Submitting a patch file that is somehow corrupt, locked or broken. (This happens often so be sure to check your patch's integrity).
- Submitting something incompatible with a current, stable version of bsnes (v115) or SNES9x (v1.6). Sorry zsnes fans.
- Including anything in your submission that breaks the site rules or content guidelines.
Also, at their discretion, the judges can choose to not complete your entry or use tool assistance if it is deemed too difficult for the contest, submitted in bad faith, or is blatantly low-effort and a deliberate waste of their time. This may result in disqualification or a poor performance in the contest.
Tips & Tricks
If you haven't digested the levels from 2021's QLDC to see what did well (or poorly) in that contest, here's some things that might be helpful to keep in mind during creation and what is helpful or is a hindrance when it comes judging time.
Recipes for Success
- Have your level concept be coherent and understandable even if the idea is nonsense.
- Funny moments, humour or a silly tone go a long way
- As a chocolate contest adding onto the vanilla game is encouraged.
- Break conventional ideas for what a Mario level can be.
- Make use of the unintended behaviour of things.
- Avoid making incoherent things for the sake of incoherence.
- Making the hardest level you can, while questionable, can also be detrimental if it's not fun.
- Deliberately unfun sections won't win you any favours with the judges.
- Making fake "low-effort" levels runs the risk as being interpreted as actually low-effort.
- Don't paste a mess of Map16 tiles in your level or make unintuitive edits to tiles.
- Troll levels (especially the progress-denying variety) are not advisable.
These pointers are just some guiding principles and not rules. QLDC will always be about unorthodox or silly design, so thinking outside the box is encouraged above all else.
For this contest authorblues and Kezcade are returning from QLDC 2021 to judge and joining them are JamesD28 and patcdr. These lovely folks will play all your questionable levels and give their honest analysis of the entries and through consensus crown the winner(s). Like QLDC, there is no point system or score rubric and the winners will be decided based solely on how much the entries impress or live up to the expectations of questionableness the judges have.
Some of the judges will likely stream on Twitch their playthroughs of your submissions which you will be able to tune into.
The 3 most questionable entries will earn their creators super special trophies, as well as the greatest prize of all: bragging rights!
Everyone else will get a nice participation trophy, and for their time and effort our judges will receive a trophy as well!
Unfortunately the energy field that holds the questionable orbs has yet to charge to full strength, so for this short-form contest our judges will be picking some "cool levels" and giving out this stamp:
You must submit your entry as an unlocked .bps file created using Floating IPS with a clean Super Mario World ROM. You can put your entry in a Zip or 7-zip archive if you want. For ease of submission and access, we suggest using your personal File Bin here on the site to host your patch or archive file.
To avoid potential disqualifications for patch errors, make sure your .bps is in working order by re-applying it to your copy of Super Mario World before submitting it.
Submit your entry in this thread. If you need to update your entry, edit your post instead of creating a new one! Duplicate posts will be ignored in favour of your oldest post, so keep your entry up-to-date.
For those of you playing the home game, if would like to check out the contest entries you can:
- Get the anonymized entries here: Obfuscated Entries
- Get the entries with the authors names here: De-obfuscated Entries (Judges Don't Click).
- View the list of the entries by number and author here: Author Names (Judges Don't Click)
Thanks for your participation, look forward to the results.