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[Complete] 126 - Frostflow Freezer - Jimmy52905
Forum Index - Events - Collaboration Projects - SMW Central Production 2 - World 7 - [Complete] 126 - Frostflow Freezer - Jimmy52905
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Originally posted by mrdeepay
jump


That jump actually doesn't seem very hard. Unless that blue ice sprite thing does something to you. If it does, then disregard. But if it doesn't, and you can spin-kill it, you just need to spin jump to the right. I think it is a good difficulty for a W7 level.
Finally I have some updates!
I pretty much redid most of the first room since I wasn't satisfied with how it was originally. I think my new design works a bit better now, but I warn you now there is a SHITLOAD of lag. I don't even know what's causing it but SNN says that it's a problem with the ROM itself, not my level, so I guess he's gonna fix it or something. Oh and there is still a bug with the snowball that I have yet to fix but other than that I think I'm pretty much finished with it unless any of you have problems with it.

IPS Download

Extras



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

Advertising Space


- These spikes don't look like they hurt on the sides, so they shouldn't be set to hurt. Update to the latest base and use the conditional hurt blocks in that instead.
- Update to the latest base ROM so you can rebalance the level because SMW's health system isn't being used.
- Palette 8 shenanigans. Not very noticible (sp) with vSMW Mario, but the one that's supposed to be used? I would just use disasemblies or edit the offending graphics to have an icy look (black outline, white shine, clear everything else) like the icebar used in the level.


Blind, ambush-styled attacks thanks to the off-screen falling spikes.


You can get stuck here.


Low FG position with Secondary Entrance 126


Semi-blind drop, but ultimately a non-issue if you do what I mentioned in the first screen.

General: There's a sparse number of power-ups in the level. Not including the freebies you provided at the start, there were only two (a Flower and a Question block with a Flower), both of which were very far into the level.

Overall: It's fairly hard for me to judge the level for the time being because of the afformentioned lag and the fact that I'm typing this at almost 3:30 in the morning. Maybe updating your ROM should help the problem, if not reconsider the ExAnimation you're using.

Might have more comments once the slowdown is fixed, but for now:

First off, I thought we went over this before, but if you have spikes at the top of the screen, they will fall even when Mario's on the bottom of the screen, which leads to blind airstrikes. We don't want those. Falling spikes should never activate while off-screen, not for the game we're trying to make.

Second, pairs of ice bars are certainly one way to make underwater sections challenging, but by the time I get to screen E I'm tired of seeing them used in the same way (which is discriminatory toward Big Mario, by the way).

Third, some parts of the level, notably 7-8 and C-F, have quite flat, blocky, boring architecture compared to the rest of the level.

Fourth, your powerup distribution is weird. I understand the first two are for testing, but at the end of the secret path here you've got two fire flowers practically right next to each other. And nothing in between those two parts, which is the real problem.

Fifth, the only sprites that seem icy are the ice bars.


Some screen-by-screen commentary:

0: Is the message box necessary? If you forced players to progress by jumping on one of these, they would understand immediately. I mean, the blocks have cracks in them, so do you need to point it out? What if you just added one or two of those blocks to bar Mario's path in the beginning?

4, left: Does this on/off switch have to be right next to the boulder? It just makes things awfully cramped for no good reason.

5, switch: Wouldn't a turn block be better here in case players miss the switch by accident?

7, lower-left: This smwcoin is pretty close to the first one. Since it's just a powerup-accessible one, couldn't you move it further back? In fact, couldn't you make use of the star for this one?

A-B, middle path: Interesting setups, but remember that sliding will render the sliding koopas mostly harmless.

9, top: Is it really necessary to have such a narrow corridor with enemies inside?

8-7, top path: Not much going on here at all- that, coupled with the sudden wide-open space, makes things stand out a bit.

6, top path: Is it necessary to have this many blocks barring passage?

C, top path, lower left: I feel like this would be a good place for a hidden 1up.

C, top-F, bottom: Again, not much going on here.

E, bottom-9, bottom: I don't mean to be overly rude, but it feels like you're kind of running out of steam here. There's a third ice-bar-pair setup, a couple more fish, and then a bunch of spike dodging. Despite being easier underwater, this spike dodging, too, is discriminatory toward Big Mario. Aren't there any other sprites you can make use of to mix things up a bit over on this side of the level?

Also, the star makes no sense. Think about it: you're rewarding more skilled players by making the level even easier, and you're punishing less skilled players by making the level even harder. To me, this segregation is just as bad as Big Mario Discrimination. If you used the star for a smwcoin somehow and put more variety into the normal path here, I think that would be better.

3, bottom-1, bottom: Same general impression as with above.

3, switch: If you wait for the spike to get stuck in the ice, then hit the switch, the spike remains stuck in the water, which makes no sense :b


I remember you saying that spritework isn't your strong point. If it's really a problem, why not team up with someone who's stronger in that area? Or, if you want to improve on your own, that's fine too; try to introduce different sprites or find new ways to use existing ones. For example, instead of having two ice bars on the wall/floor, you could have a single one in the center. Even small changes like that can add much-needed variety and creativity. If you're really stuck, I can try to provide some screen-by-screen advice, but I'd need to know all the sprites that are available for you to use, and I'd rather do that as a sort of last resort thing so that the level remains your own as much a possible, if that makes sense (though come to think of it, I'm starting to wonder if that's the right mindset).

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Okay well I followed some advice from Axem and DeePay and I now have an updated IPS of the first room.

Changes I've made:

- Deleted/moved some of the double ice bars to make it a bit more fair towards big Mario as well as some other minor changes in enemy placement.
- Changed the ice bar graphics to spinning spike balls since I figured it doesn't make sense to just have random chunks of ice that can hurt you. :P
- Replaced all the spinies with Frostees.
- Completely removed the feature to reset the position of the snowball if you drop it because of some weird issues with the ASM and the fact that now since it's only required to get to the secret exit path I figured it's not really necessary.
- Changed the position of the second SMWC coin and star.
- Added in some upside down pirhana plants. I figured that they'd be fitting since it is a cave after all, though I might alter their graphics/palette to make them more icy.
- Updated to the newest (well almost newest) base ROM.
- Changed the spikes to act like the conditional hurt blocks.
- Added a turn block next to the P-Switch block.
- Moved the position of the first accessible ON/OFF switch.

DOWNLOAD

Extras



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

Advertising Space

There's improvement, so that's good. There's some issue with the music that occurs with only this song and when Mario does anything that triggers vSMW's music. (Star or short-timed P-Switch) that will cause the music to crap-out and cause the damn to freeze when Mario dies or leaves the level. This isn't a problem with whatever you did- I had ran a similar scenario in another level in the base ROM and set the music in that level to what you're using and I got the same result. So for the purpose to testing, I used a different song in the ROM.



I don't think I've ever got the point of the starting room here. What are you gonna do with it?


Have you considered using a smoother gradient? I don't think this one is necessarily bad, but I feel that it could be better.


I don't think this message box is necessary especially if you're gonna say it's for the secret exit.



Honestly, I forgot what I took this picture for. That's what I get for doing this stuff late at night again.


Layer 3 shenanigans cause the Piranha Plants to appear behind the BG.


Blurbs have this odd issue of slightly swimming upwards in this level and they stop at the water's surface. However, this particular one never poses a threat to Mario since he attacks too high.


Fingerprints: I had disabled LM's level animation for the level and noticed that it had removed a good amount of the slowdown as well as not make the Piranha Plants not act so cheap. An alternative I would consider is making the icy water layer 2 and leave the BG to Layer 3 ExGFX down the road- see if that reduces your slower

That's very strange MrDeePay considering when I tested my level I never experienced either the music glitch or the bug with the pirhana plants. Maybe you aren't applying the patch to a clean ROM because I notice that the Mario GFX in your screenshots aren't the same as the Mario GFX in the SMWCP2 ROM. Unless you applied those GFX afterward or something.

Anyway, I plan on changing the starting room to something else. I just haven't gotten to it yet. The HDMA gradient looked better when I made a .png of it, but I guess that image to HDMA converter kinda ruined the quality of it a bit. Also the reason the blurps swim upward are due to the way I coded the water effect. Since SMW doesn't have any true Layer 3 interaction, I had to check if Mario's Y position was below a certain value and then enable the water level flag if it is. The problem with this is that it doesn't affect sprites at all, and turning on sprite buoyancy would make the sprites ABOVE the water think that they're in water too. So I had to write a code that would slowly increase the sprites' vertical speeds when they are in water to give the effect that the gravity in water has a lower influence on them. But that also caused the blurp fish to move slightly upward since the SMW gravity routine doesn't effect them. I didn't think it would be too big a deal though so I didn't bother fixing it. :P

And your suggestion to swap Layer 2 and Layer 3 would require a lot of reworking to the BG as well as some quality loss so I thought it would be better to do it this way. Besides, a good amount of the slowdown will probably be removed once SNN applies FastROM or something.
First off, when I take issue with a sprite setup, the last thing I want you to do is simply remove it and leave everything else the way it is. I'll try to be more specific this time.

Second, I actually like the ice bars better, even if they don't quite make sense. I mean, it fits the atmosphere, and now you have frostees too, so... :b

But yes, this level is improving. I'll try to help the process with some more commentary.

One major issue is that you can actually slide on the frozen water as if it were a slope, making players essentially impervious to enemy attacks. You should disable that if you can.

3, top: Not only is this spike blind, players will be busy with the rainbow shell and frostee so it'll fall harmlessly. This is one sprite I actually would just get rid of- or turn it into a normal spike.

5, top: Notice how the on/off switch is set into the ceiling? You could do the same thing over where the snowball is; then (a) it isn't cramped around the snowball; (b) players don't have to backtrack for on/off switches in this room.

4, bottom: One thing you could add here is a vertical fish where the switch palace blocks are. The blocks seal off the spikes, but then it's harder to get around the fish. I guess that might end up being discriminatory toward Big Mario, though, so I'm not sure.

6, bottom-8, bottom: Some of these fish start too high to pose much of a threat- I'd put them a bit lower or something equivalent. Also, the architecture here is a bit flat, especially the ceiling. I would make the arrangement a bit more uneven, line the ceiling with a couple of spikes too (but leave enough room to navigate), and what have you.

9, middle: This falling spike is also pretty blind, especially if players hit the powerup block. What if instead, you put a frostee there and maybe extended the jump-through platform a bit, so that players have to jump past it?

8/9 bottom: The only problem with this smwcoin is that players can abuse invincibility frames to get it. Perhaps you should make players go along a spike trench lining the whole bottom of that area instead?

A/B, middle: What if you made use of a different enemy here? For instance, you could carve more of a curve into the floor and combine a spitting flying piranha plant with a frostee. That would also give you more room on the upper path so it isn't so flat.

6-8, top: That hillock provides more definition to the area, but the rest still looks a little plain. What if you expanded upon the use of classic piranha plants by making players roll the snowball up a hill littered with piranha plants? Then they'd have to use careful timing, and the architecture would look less plain. You could also add some bumps or curves to the ceiling.

9-B, top: With more room here you can make the ground more uneven (as opposed to having a very low ceiling, especially on 9). Instead of using elongated ice blocks, use short ones and vary their heights. That'll make getting around those bouncing koopas- and whatever else you through in there- more interesting.

C, top: This might be a good place to use a spike and/or a rainbow shell, or something else. Players will see the spike beforehand and will have to deal with it if they rush down. Also, I meant those invisible 1up points, not putting one in plain sight :b

E, middle: A flying or bouncing koopa near the kicking one might make things more colorful here.

E, top: What if you put two frostees here? You could compartmentalize them if they have a bad habit of overlapping.

F: I feel like there should be at least one enemy somewhere in this area. Perhaps you could use an above-water ice bar, for example, but think of something.

D-A, bottom: This is pretty boring and flat. You might not be able to do much about the latter, but having a long string of coins like that and not many enemies overall...? I guess you have limited sprite options underwater, but there's gotta be some way you can mix things up here.

3-1, bottom: The same goes for this area. Between the two, I think you need to come up with one more kind of enemy/setup/whatever to introduce so things don't get stale. Also, that frostee in the beginning of the stage falls into the water and becomes harmless- why not make use of it and put a jump-through platform right underneath the surface on screen 1, so players have to jump past it?

1, left: Perhaps a p-quarter would be more appropriate?

0, bottom: I wonder if one or two more enemies here would make things feel more alive?

1-2, top: Even if it's a simple enemy, I wonder if one should be here (assuming it doesn't cause slowdown, anyway)- it feels just a tad empty.


I hope that helps.

--------------------
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Originally posted by AxemJinx
4, bottom: One thing you could add here is a vertical fish where the switch palace blocks are. The blocks seal off the spikes, but then it's harder to get around the fish. I guess that might end up being discriminatory toward Big Mario, though, so I'm not sure.

Well due to the sprite buoyancy problem that I mentioned earlier I can't use any vertical or horizontal fish in the level, which is the reason I used blurp fish instead. I'll see what I can do about the other sprite placement issues though. Thanks.

edit: Okay I have a new IPS now and I think I finally nailed it this time. (Unless of course someone finds more flaws with it, which they probably will. :P) I changed the bottom underwater section towards the midway point a bit, changed the spike bar graphics slightly (Now they are FROZEN spike bars! :P), changed some other stuff and added some sparkies as a new enemy to the level (frozen sparkies of course :P) And I also fixed the glitch with the blurp fish slowly moving upward.

IPS Download (I can't believe I've had to update the first room of the level so many times. >_<)
Fun level overall. I do have some design gripes and questions though, so I'll cut right to the screenshots.


-Bad positioning on that sprite. It simply gets stuck in the slopes and rolls around like a moron.


-Blind spike drop. If I had went a little more to the right, I would have been hit. I'd suggest shifting that over to prevent players from getting hurt (or even lower the ceiling a tad.


-Now I'm going to assume you need the star to get through here, because otherwise it's next to impossible to do when you're big.


-Turn block palette error + Fire Mario error. You might want to do some tweaking here, and if it's totally necessary, do away with the 2-3 falling spikes you have in the level (one of which is unfair anyway).


-I'm going to assume that I'm missing something totally obvious, and I'm pretty sure it has to do with that random ice block to my left. How do I get the snowball past here?


-This corner of the level lacks .. well, everything. Might want to redesign that corner a bit and incorporate some sort of obstacle.

Overall, it's an enjoyable but flawed level. We really need to tone down the reverb volume on that song because it becomes more ear-grating than pleasant to listen to. That, and the obvious issue of slowdown (which will hopefully be fixed for you and everyone eventually). Aside from the uneven placement of the SMWC coins (two rather early on .. I'd almost suggest moving the first one to near the midpoint or the second room and throw a mushroom/coin reward up there), it's quite well done. I'm looking forward to seeing the rest of it soon.
Thanks for the feedback.

Originally posted by S.N.N.

-Bad positioning on that sprite. It simply gets stuck in the slopes and rolls around like a moron.

Whoa what the fuck? How the hell did that happen? o.o

Originally posted by S.N.N.

-Blind spike drop. If I had went a little more to the right, I would have been hit. I'd suggest shifting that over to prevent players from getting hurt (or even lower the ceiling a tad.

I suppose I might be able to move that spike one tile over to the right or something.

Originally posted by S.N.N.

-Now I'm going to assume you need the star to get through here, because otherwise it's next to impossible to do when you're big.

Yes.

Originally posted by S.N.N.

-Turn block palette error + Fire Mario error. You might want to do some tweaking here, and if it's totally necessary, do away with the 2-3 falling spikes you have in the level (one of which is unfair anyway).

Like I said I'll try and figure out a way around this. I don't want to have to end up removing the spikes though since I personally think they worked well with this atmosphere. Eh I'll figure something out.

Originally posted by S.N.N.

-I'm going to assume that I'm missing something totally obvious, and I'm pretty sure it has to do with that random ice block to my left. How do I get the snowball past here?

Uh...you're not. This is actually where you are supposed to use the snowball to reach that ledge and then go back and follow the right path (toward the normal exit path) If you noticed earlier, in that area there were a bunch of spikes right below the water, making it inaccessible to go across it unless you have the switch set to the ON position. You need to use the snowball to reach that ledge since it's the only way to get back to that area with the switch in the ON position which will allow you to safely walk across the frozen water avoiding the spikes and lead you to a door. I suppose I could've made that puzzle a bit more obvious though somehow.

Originally posted by S.N.N.

-This corner of the level lacks .. well, everything. Might want to redesign that corner a bit and incorporate some sort of obstacle.

I'll try to think of something to add there.
4: That's a good place for the switch, but what happened to the other one to the right? I meant that you should have both, so you can avoid backtracking. Also, did something weird happen to the water? It's hard to jump out at full speed/height, and I feel like that shouldn't be happening.

8, lower-right: Set back that ice block by one tile so players can't line up an easy entrance into that spike trench, and put bumps within the trench so it's not a straightaway for small Mario either.

I guess you weren't fond of my recommendations for the middle of the stage, but I stand by them :b In particular, B-middle, 9-top, and 7-top don't seem very interesting to me. I guess it's just my opinion though.

C, lower-left: The reason I recommended the invisible 1up points is because otherwise, getting this is as simple as accessing the secret path. I suppose it's not a huge deal, though.

E, bottom: Big Mario Discrimination.

D-C, bottom: I don't see the point of the free pass here. Why not extend the spike + sparky idea to the entire section?

B-9, bottom: Layer priority issues with the piranha plants.

2, bottom: Big Mario Discrimination.

1, middle: I think the frostee disappeared stage left for me- I wonder if you should move its spawn point a bit further left?

0, bottom: Maybe you could place an ice bar where that one-tile ice block is?

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Originally posted by AxemJinx
4: That's a good place for the switch, but what happened to the other one to the right? I meant that you should have both, so you can avoid backtracking. Also, did something weird happen to the water? It's hard to jump out at full speed/height, and I feel like that shouldn't be happening.

Oh, my bad. I thought you meant to just move it. That makes more sense now. :P Also I'm not sure what happened to the water, it was working fine earlier until I started messing with stuff in my level ASM code. Gah! >_<

Originally posted by AxemJinx
8, lower-right: Set back that ice block by one tile so players can't line up an easy entrance into that spike trench, and put bumps within the trench so it's not a straightaway for small Mario either.

Not a bad idea, I'll try that out.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
I guess you weren't fond of my recommendations for the middle of the stage, but I stand by them :b In particular, B-middle, 9-top, and 7-top don't seem very interesting to me. I guess it's just my opinion though.

Oh, I must not have noticed your suggestions since I read your post before you edited it. I'll see what I can add there.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
C, lower-left: The reason I recommended the invisible 1up points is because otherwise, getting this is as simple as accessing the secret path. I suppose it's not a huge deal, though.

I actually can't fit any invisible 1up points under there since the platform is directly above the frozen water so there isn't enough room, unless I modify the terrain in that area a bit.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
E, bottom: Big Mario Discrimination.

Not entirely, you could just wait for the blurp fish to pass. :P Besides I was afraid that without it, it would be too easy for small Mario to get through.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
D-C, bottom: I don't see the point of the free pass here. Why not extend the spike + sparky idea to the entire section?

I was thinking of it as a reward if you were able to get there as Fire Mario, but if you still think I should remove it then I will.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
B-9, bottom: Layer priority issues with the piranha plants.

How is everyone else experiencing layer priority issues when I'm not? o.O

Originally posted by AxemJinx
2, bottom: Big Mario Discrimination.

Read above.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
1, middle: I think the frostee disappeared stage left for me- I wonder if you should move its spawn point a bit further left?

Weird. I'll try and fix that.

Originally posted by AxemJinx
0, bottom: Maybe you could place an ice bar where that one-tile ice block is?

Good idea.
Originally posted by Jimmy52905
I actually can't fit any invisible 1up points under there since the platform is directly above the frozen water so there isn't enough room, unless I modify the terrain in that area a bit.

Oh, good call. Well, either way is fine.

Originally posted by Jimmy52905
Not entirely, you could just wait for the blurp fish to pass.

Right, but my point is that small Mario doesn't have to wait, which seems kind of unfair. I admit designing underwater obstacles can be tough, especially with this stage's limitations, and it might just be me, but I would redesign those two spots a bit.

Originally posted by Jimmy52905
I was thinking of it as a reward if you were able to get there as Fire Mario, but if you still think I should remove it then I will.

You can see what others say first, but personally I would remove it, yes.

Originally posted by Jimmy52905
How is everyone else experiencing layer priority issues when I'm not? o.O

Might be a patch issue, but I really have no idea.

Originally posted by Jimmy52905
Weird. I'll try and fix that.

Just so you know, I meant to say from the secret path. In the beginning of the stage there are no problems there.

Originally posted by Jimmy52905
I can't believe I've had to update the first room of the level so many times. >_<

Don't worry- I'd say your level is improving. I particularly liked what you did on screen D (top), for example.

--------------------
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Originally posted by MrDeePay
There's some issue with the music that occurs with only this song and when Mario does anything that triggers vSMW's music. (Star or short-timed P-Switch) that will cause the music to crap-out and cause the damn to freeze when Mario dies or leaves the level. This isn't a problem with whatever you did- I had ran a similar scenario in another level in the base ROM and set the music in that level to what you're using and I got the same result. So for the purpose to testing, I used a different song in the ROM.


I'm a little late here, but just for the record, if you see music-related bugs like this, you should point them out in the General Discussion thread or somewhere similar so I have a greater chance of seeing and fixing it. I don't check every level thread regularly and I don't want to miss an important bug like this.
I should get a new layout.

Probably won't, though.
I guess it's time for some updates. Here's a video showing a preview of the second room of my level, and shows off the main gimmick.

Video link
Somehow it reminds me of the ski sections from Yoshi's island, though that might also be the graphics at work. Interesting mechanic.

What does the twirl jump mean for sprite interaction, though? Is it like a big spin jump, or more like a regular jump?

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Originally posted by AxemJinx
Somehow it reminds me of the ski sections from Yoshi's island, though that might also be the graphics at work. Interesting mechanic.

What does the twirl jump mean for sprite interaction, though? Is it like a big spin jump, or more like a regular jump?

Yeah, I was actually inspired a lot by the ski sections from YI, but this is my own little variation of it I guess. :P

As for the twirl jump, it's pretty much exactly the same as a spin jump, but pressing the B button instead of A makes you go a bit higher like a regular jump does, I might do something else with it but I'm not sure yet.
I love the DKC-like water effect you have going on, even though I think you should animate the ice tiles so it doesn't look too cutoff.
Well my level is pretty much finished. I posted the IPS in the level testing thread here.
Feedback would be awesome.
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