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135: Monotone Monochrome - Pikerchu13
Forum Index - Events - Super Mario World Central Production 2 - World 10 - 135: Monotone Monochrome - Pikerchu13
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Originally posted by Lightvayne
RZ: Please stop making "this reminds me of..." posts. Its getting a bit annoying and adds no input to the conversation whatsoever.

He likely won't stop, so it might be worth just forum banning him if this keeps up.

I have to agree with TLMB, Pikerchu. I'd make the pipes pure outlines instead of the filled texture you have right now. Other than that, just remember it's world 9, and as such it should be pretty hard. It's hard to tell if it will be so far.

This look any good?
I'd say the pipes need to be whiter. More like outlines.

I no longer have interest in SMW Hacking as I did when I first started several years ago.
gradient without the vertical lines?
More like vertical lines without the gradient.

I no longer have interest in SMW Hacking as I did when I first started several years ago.
The others complained a single color would make it seem to flat.
Rather than minimize the pipes' detail to make it fit the rest of the tiles, I'd add more detail to the other tiles to fit the way the pipes look now. That's just my opinion, though.

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Originally posted by AxemJinx
Rather than minimize the pipes' detail to make it fit the rest of the tiles, I'd add more detail to the other tiles to fit the way the pipes look now. That's just my opinion, though.

Since adding detail would ruin the point of how this is supposed to be abstract, I'll minimize the detail on the pipes. It's why the pipes were originally jet black with white outlines, instead of grey with lighting and shadows. Quite frankly, I find the black with white outlines pipe is much more exciting than solid white with black outlines, what with the rest of the world being totally white. And I'm also going to delete the background like Rameau suggested.
Oh, don't get me wrong- I think I prefer the other version of the pipes, too. Why don't you stick with that version, then? I think what's throwing people off a bit is that the pipes are filled black, whereas the ground just looks like a line, and it feels like the dirt should be "filled" in a way similar to the pipes so it has more "volume." For example, making the dirt solid black but running white lines through it as you did with the pipes.

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when I suggested gradient w/o vertical lines I was thinking like this

or this

I kind of like the top one you drew there. It's ultimately up to Pikerchu, but that one seems the most fitting so far in my opinion.
I know it's only 5 screens, but I'd like some approval on the current themes and ideas being intertwined with one another. Also, don't mind the music, that's going to change to I have no clue what song fits this level. Difficulty is one thing I need to be definitely told on if it's too hard or too easy. I feel the pipes should remain black in this level, because with all the stuff that's going on, having them black like that let's you see with more clarity what the heck you're doing.

So yeah, someone just tell me everything that's wrong with this level so far.
It looks okay so far with the 5 screens in the IPS. The SMW Coin is a bit too easy to spot and too easy to get at this stage in the game being it is the last world.

I do like the pipes altoiddealer drew up a little bit better than the full black/white. As far as the first screen goes, as a suggestion (not necessarily something to fix), maybe extend the frosted, colored ground through the entire platform and show color on the left side of the platform and monochrome color on the right side.

Are you replacing the graphics of the chainsaws and bullet bills with something else?
Well I guess I somehow promised SNN that I would leave feedback on this (and other levels, but we'll see about that), so here goes!

First off, this SMWC Coin is really way too easy to get, in fact I didn't manage to miss it in any of my playthroughs (I died like twenty times because of reasons stated below (spoiler crossfire bullets)), because really, look at it.
What other way am I supposed to take? The way down is both really hard to see at first and is blocked by the crossfire bullets most of the time, so this is the only way left that isn't completely ridiculous.

If it wasn't clear yet I hate the crossfire bullets in this level in general, they don't add a lot besides random, artificial difficulty, this section would be a breeze without them.

Isn't this supposed to be solid?
It really feels like it should, at least, also that swirly thing appears to be solid if memory serves right.

I love the visuals of this level, by the way, and would love to see you put more (fitting) decoration, just because the art style is bland on purpose, doesn't mean the level's got to be, right.

Because I was banned during the pipe debate I couldn't post, but I do think that the second set of pipes that altoiddealer posted looks best, and I would love to see them in here, and I doubt they would make much of a difference design wise.

One last tiny little nitpick I have graphically is that the line guide ends look too overshaded compared to the rest of the level for my taste, I think they would fit better if they were three coloured, like all the other moving parts of the level.

Design wise I can't really say much, but I like what I'm playing here (other than the bullets).

Your layout has been removed.
glad peeps like my suggestion :P

I just thought the original pipes made too much noise, and that removing the black vertical lines would tone 'em down a notch

I've been following the progress of this hack for awhile, and this is a really awesome thing that you guys have going on. I'm definitely looking forward to the release!
I've got to agree that the crossfire bullet generator is perhaps not the best idea here; autoscrolling + saws = decidedly timing-based gameplay, and a random element like a bullet generator doesn't mix well with this, as it requires a good deal of freedom of movement in order for the player to be able to deal with effectively, yet the first two elements tend to restrict this very freedom, which makes for an awkward conflict. In fact, I'd probably go so far as to say that if you want to use a generator of this sort at all (not just here, but in any level), the area really needs to be designed with the generator itself as the primary obstacle, and everything else in the level intended as a compliment to it. Doing things the other way around runs the risk of giving the impression of, as stated above, artificial difficulty.

That all said, I have to admit I was a bit surprised that you went with the rail, saw and bullet approach in general; the result is a level which feels a bit more crowded, sprite-wise, which is quite the opposite of what I was expecting from the graphical style. That's not to say it's necessarily a bad approach--it all depends on how you're planning to handle the rest of the level. You mentioned earlier that you were aiming for the idea of the world gradually fading into nothingness; if you were to start out with a fairly crowded area, then steadily transition to more minimalistic setups (not easy setups, just less crowded ones), coupled with a progressively barer landscape, this could potentially be a very effective way to convey this idea.

As far as music might be appropriate for a level of this sort...Mountain Void Mix (34) would be the "obvious" choice, being the only one of the tracks intended for the abstract world not yet used there (and only used in one other level much earlier in the game), and it seems to fit the mood here reasonably well, both in atmosphere and pacing. I think my personal favorite, however, is Watery Level 3 (48) which is a bit slower and more understated, but has a nice pensive sadness to it with a light undertone of menace, which strikes me as a particularly good compliment to the visual style.
One Week Update

Unfortunately, because of the Holiday thing, I never really got much progress, I made about 3 more screens, and I really like the idea Rameau's Nephew had of the place becoming more barren as the level goes on, so I decided I'd do that. But for now, this is all I have.
Æsthetically, I'd say this level is starting to come together fairly nicely now. Gameplay-wise, I'd say it would most obviously benefit from some other sorts of sprites to contrast with the line-guided ones. The addition of a few red or blue Paratroopas (perhaps one or the other, but not both, to avoid confusion) might help fill in some of the more open areas you previously tried to compensate for with the bullet generator (at the same time, I wonder if Saws/Fuzzies + Paratroopas is perhaps not the most original combination, and if something like the Sparabuzzy might be worth experimenting with, but on the other hand, I think an enemy which you can stomp on and can't spin bounce off of might be a better contrast with the saws. A fire chomp or two might also be another thing to consider using, however). Perhaps even more critically, though, I think you need a few enemies on the ledges and slopes themselves, both to keep players on their toes between saw segments, and to add an additional factor into the saw-dodging setups themselves.

As for the coin, it's better placed now, but I'm not too sure about that ceiling above it. For one, it's completely invisible, meaning the player won't even realize it's there at all before bumping into it, which is a surefire way to land on the spikes. Secondly, I think you're asking for a little too much precision for the amount of time the player has to get the coin and escape before everything scrolls off screen.
Have nothing to add here. Due to the wacky autoscrolling nature of the level, I'm adding a short underground segment leading to the midpoint, and then the level continues above ground.
- The little grassy stalks, small as they are, strike me as a very nice addition to the environment. I've always found it interesting how a few small, carefully placed bits of plenum give a much better impression of emptiness than true emptiness does.

- The saws are generally handled a bit more interestingly now, with the way they dance about and follow Mario over a broader area, menacingly hovering back and forth the whole way. However, I still think you need a few enemies on the slopes and ledges, both for variety's sake and to spice up the "downtime" a bit when the player's waiting around for the scrolling to advance. There's a few areas where there's just not that much going on at present, this:

...being a particularly noticeble example. I know you're going for a progressively emptier feel, but that doesn't mean there should be large sections with no obstacles at all.

- This setup offers very little leeway; the player essentially has two very short windows in which to slip past, and by the time they've figured out where these are, it's already too late. This is especially problematic considering there are no powerups in the level before this point. Speaking of which...

- This level needs a powerup closer to the beginning. As it stands, you're asking the player to go through nearly the entire section (half the level? A third?) without so much as a humble mushroom.

- If the player stays moderately close to the right side of the screen, as most players will attempt to do, the falling platform will fall off screen before the landmass which the player needs to land on is even visible, with the player having no way of predicting this. I'd recommend adding a second falling platform above or below this one (like the setup on the other side), leaving the player enough time for the landmass in question to at least scroll on screen before they are dropped callously into the abyss.

- This part seems very silly; the scrolling comes to almost a standstill in a section where there's virtually nothing at all going on. If anything, this seems like a good point in the scroll to throw in a small vertical challenge (e.g. making Mario have to vertically ascend a few stacked ledges which are patrolled horizontally by saws, making him travel through a small snaking tunnel, etc.). Just having the play stand around watching this goofy thing oscillate back and forth metronome style pretty much brings the moment of the level to a complete halt.

The white on black section looks pretty neat (I'd actually recommend making this section a little longer, or adding another one later), but the Venus a looks pretty weird (well, these ones always do, having ostensibly misplaced their dentures just before dong a mobster impression, but this particular example looks even weirder than usual). I suspect it may take a little bit of experimenting to get a good inverse, monochrome palette suitable for sprites like this.
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Forum Index - Events - Super Mario World Central Production 2 - World 10 - 135: Monotone Monochrome - Pikerchu13

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