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I've been thinking.... (a little endgame spoiling here)
Forum Index - Sunken Ghost Ship - Old Contests & Events - An SMWC Production - I've been thinking.... (a little endgame spoiling here)
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Before SMWCP came out, people were saying it would be the best hack ever. After it came out however, and especially since the SMWCPII forum was made available to the public, everyone seems to view the hack as an embarrassment.

I was reading through the improvements thread (and a few threads in the SMWCPII forum), and the comments are mostly like this: "too many levels use the same gimmick", "the difficulty is jerky and terrible", "the graphics clash too much", "some of the level design is incoherent", and "WTF TOADSWORTH?".

This very much disturbs me.
I wish I could tell you why the hack was ultimately viewed that way, but I don't think I could go into specifics without offending a number of its contributors.

Suffice it to say the problem with ASMWCP is that there were too many philosophies poured into it from too many different directions combined with lack of initiative on the parts of the level designers to play test each others' levels. All this lead to a...decent game, but embarrassing when considering SMWCentral is the hub of all SMW hacking.

We're going to do a lot better this time. I can feel it. One of the best things about being human is learning from past mistakes, so my money's in ASMWCP2 knocking 'em dead. :3
I still find it funny how people assumed this would be the best hack ever. The entire trip was really rocky, with different leaders, different ideals, different quality levels, etc. I knew from the start it was going to be rather flawed, and it was. However, saying it's an "embarrassment" is a little bit of a stretch, honestly. There are some fantastic levels in the hack, and some fantastic ideas, but they seem to get overshadowed by the less-than-fantastic ideas, the difficulty curve, and stuff like that.

Nonetheless, this is basically the VIP1 of SMWC. A baby step, if you will. Taking what we have learned, we can make SMWCP2 an amazing piece of work.
Daar everybody who thinks ASMWCP's difficulty curve is terrible,

Play ASMT.

Love, GS15

--------------------
Good fucking bye.

Extras



I should have something witty to put here (even if it's just to update dated info), shouldn't I?

Advertising Space

Just because ASMT may have a worse curve doesn't make SMWCP's all of a sudden good. However, it's difficulty is blown out of proportion largely because of a number of levels early on.

Originally posted by Mineyl
All this lead to a...decent game, but embarrassing when considering SMWCentral is the hub of all SMW hacking.

That sounds about right in my impression. It's good enough by SMWCentral's typical featured hack standards, but people's expectations were so high that it was considered a disappointment...

Regardless, I think SMWCP2 can be better. In fact, just from the graphics, world themes, etc. so far, I say it already is.

–=–=–=–=–=–=–
Alyssa's Unlikely Trap (demo 3)
Yeah, some things really needed to be fixed. I forget which level, but one level in the sky world, the creator must have been SO ADHD when making that. It combined clouds, ice cave, fire cave, and regular cave into one level. That really needed to be fixed.
Originally posted by GoldenSonic15
Daar everybody who thinks ASMWCP's difficulty curve is terrible,

Play ASMT.

Love, GS15


ASMT wasnt as bad though.Honestly,this hack deserves the horrible difficulty curve award a lot more then ASMT does among other things IMO.
Heh. I think the biggest issue with this hack is that it mixes philosophies, as stated earlier. Specifically on the "no level should be hard" issue.

I could categorize levels (generalized)...

Simple design/easy: Most levels suffer from an illusion of choice to give the level character, but in the end they are quite linear. Either just: "Get to the goal", or: "Go to the left and grab this P-switch, so you can backtrack a bit and go to the right".

Attempted well designed/tedious: I'll mention "Wild Wet Castle" as an example here. I feel the level has great potential, but there are a couple of significant design issues. One segment has way too much backtracking if you do it the intended way. Backtracking, while it can be done well with on/off switches or multiple floors, should be avoided in other situations as it's just not fun. The other big issue is the pong block-spam. It's a neat thing to use and show off, but it was just overdone to the point of becoming a chore in this level.

Well designed/medium: Some levels have a genuinely good design behind them, and there aren't really any issues playing through them. There are several of these, and although a bit on the hard side, I think "Into the Water" had a great idea that was pulled off neatly. It could use more guidance in the first water part, and moved the mid-way to the back third part for balancing. The point is that it's unique, challenging and not what I'd call unfair to the player.

Well designed/Hard: Many here on SMWC think hard means it's not fun. I disagree, and see no reason why so many discriminate against people who like hard stuff. I, for one, liked "Rupture in Reality". Sure, it's really, really hard, but it's not unfair. It's based on pure skill. Also, in this case, there's an alternate path to go. The only thing I think these kind of levels are missing would be extra mid-ways. I don't see why this wasn't incorporated for more of the levels in this hack.

Extra note:I would've put a category for unfair/hard levels here, but I don't really think there was any in this hack. This would be levels forcing you to die if you made a mistake, or requiring blind jumps or guesswork. I will however mention the second part of "Creepy Dark Woods", where you play behind trees. The idea isn't original, and it's rarely fun to get hit by enemies you can't see or hear. I don't mind it too much if it had used grinders (sound) with a fair amount of holes in the foreground, so you can time yourself accordingly. Complete guesswork is unfair.

Some other issues to briefly mention...

Styles clash: Between the mix of weeaboo graphics (Banzai Bills) and nice ones don't really match my tastes. I'm not too fond of the sudden use of Yoshi's Island gfx in "Wild Wet Castle" either. If it was up to me, I'd keep the style consistent. I don't mean that you can't mix at all, i.e. by having grasslands, ice worlds, lava worlds, abstract worlds, etc. I mean that the styles clash. I prefer proper ones, but if you're going with silly (weeaboo style), don't do it in just 3 levels.

Repetetive bosses: While it's not exactly Brutal Mario-esque in the boss aspect, I'd say they are pretty damn good. The issue with them is that they make you wait around a lot in repetitive phases. There would be several solutions to this: Give them less hits (especially if they're going to be doing the same thing between each hit); Don't make their waiting phases repeat if they didn't get hit (wait once, then be given a fair attempts at damaging them before next waiting phase); If waiting/dodging stuff is the main challenge of the boss, give them automated hits between phases. Their health could also have been made visible in the GUI.

Mid-ways: Multiple mid-ways have been possible for a long time, so I don't see why the hack didn't make more use of this. Many levels could be improved by just having one extra mid-way. Also worth mentioning: some of the levels have a poorly placed mid-way point. Usually too close to the end, compared to what the player had to go through prior.

Note that these are just my views on what drags the hack down. There is a multitude of positive things to be said, but not in this post. Take it as criticism/feedback if you can.
Originally posted by Highwind
Mid-ways: Multiple mid-ways have been possible for a long time, so I don't see why the hack didn't make more use of this.


Multiple midway-points wasn't added to the hack until very late, IIRC. So really the levels that got them were the ones that needed them the most.

Also, you can use [b] and [i] instead of span style whatever. It's much quicker. :>
Originally posted by Highwind
Mid-ways: Multiple mid-ways have been possible for a long time, so I don't see why the hack didn't make more use of this.

To add on to what TRS said, the ROM space was also on the brink of filling up...otherwise, I'm sure multiple midways would've seen a lot more use.

I know little about the multiple midway points patch myself, but I have to wonder why ROM space would have much to do with anything concerning this. Maybe someone can explain?
Because multiple midways take up a ton of data (take a look at the patch). I believe it's something like 5000 bytes if you plan on having three per level .. or maybe even more.

But yeah. Multiple midways were left out until the very end, and as a last resort, the only thing I could really do was put a couple in the castle levels. They've been patched early in SMWCP2 to prevent this issue though.
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Forum Index - Sunken Ghost Ship - Old Contests & Events - An SMWC Production - I've been thinking.... (a little endgame spoiling here)

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