NOTE: Some of these guidelines are subject to change.
Welcome to this year's Vanilla Level Design Contest .. with a twist! While you will still technically be competing with each other, the levels you design will ultimately be placed into a single ROM based on your ranking. The goal is to stitch together a collaboration hack that, while not on the same scale as the SMW Central Productions, will still represent what this community is capable of.
There will be a maximum of 64 levels available in this contest. If we get more (which, historically, almost always happens), then I will find a way to factor your levels into the ROM as well. If we simply get too many levels to fit in one ROM, we will create two separate collaboration hacks (this is more unlikely).
POSSIBLE WORLD THEMES:
You may choose one of the following six themes. These are just a broad overview; feel free to be as creative as possible with whichever theme you pick:
World 1: Grassland and forest
World 2: Mountain and cave
World 3: Ice
World 4: Desert
World 5: Abstract (come up with a crazy and/or awkward level for this one)
World 6: Fortress/castle
World 7: "The best" - the top ranking levels from each world category will be placed in this final world, with the first place level being the final main level in the hack.
World Beta: "The worst" - the lowest ranked levels from each world category will be placed in this world, which is unlocked upon beating world 7.
1A. You may only use Lunar Magic and no other resources. This means that you cannot use custom sprites, blocks, patches, or any graphics that weren't present in the original ROM. The ONLY exception to this rule is the NoSpriteLimits patch.
1B. Addendum to the previous rule: You MAY manipulate the existing graphics already in the ROM - however, because the levels will ultimately be placed in the same file, I will be ASSIGNING you Map16 slots to work with (half a page) so that you do not clash with other people. I will also assign you up to 5 ExGFX slots (numbers) that you may use. Failure to comply to this rule will result in immediate disqualification.
1C. I will also assign you EIGHT (8) secondary exits which you may use if you'd like.
1D. DO NOT BEGIN DESIGNING YOUR LEVEL UNTIL YOU HAVE BEEN ASSIGNED ALL OF THE ABOVE.
2. You may work with a partner.
3. You may use custom music.
4. You may have a maximum of two exits in your level.
5. You may, and are encouraged to use switch palace blocks. I will utilize four switch palace levels from the latest 24hosmw contest in order to provide the switches themselves.
6. Use the world themes as a guidelines, but be as creative as you want. If you want to have a forest level that is burning down, go for it! Desert ruins? Go for it! An icy ghost house? Go nuts. As long as you as least very broadly follow the world themes, I'll be able to easily incorporate your level into the final ROM.
7. Please submit the following with your level: an IPS file, your .mwl files, any custom music you used, your Map16 pages, and your ExGFX files.
8. The deadline for this contest is midnight on February 16th, 2014.
9. This is more of a restatement of rule 5, but I feel it is very important: be as creative with your chosen theme as possible. Historically, people tend to make a lot of generic grassland levels. Using the themes above as guidelines, I encourage you to try and exercise your vanilla flexibility and come up with something cool.
DESIGN AND FUN: A maxiumum of 20 points will be awarded to a well-designed level and fun level. CREATIVITY: A maximum of 20 points will be awarded for your creativity. Did you come up with a cool gimmick? Did you adhere to one of the world themes while still creating something unique? DIFFICULTY: A maximum of 20 points will be awarded for keeping the difficulty of the level consistent and not making internal difficulty spikes, unfair/blind jumps, etc. AESTHETICS: A maximum of 15 points will be awarded for the look/sound of the level. FOLLOWING THE RULES: If you adhere to all of the above rules and do not cause conflicts with other levels (eg. overwriting their tiles, secondary exits, etc), then you will be awarded 5 points.
TOTAL: 80 points.
After scoring the levels, they will be organized into worlds based on their theme. The bottom ranked levels will be placed in "World Beta", and the highest ranked level from each theme will make up World 7, with the winning level being the final level of the hack. The rest of the levels will be organized by rank on a per-world basis based on their theme.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please ask in the "Discussion" sticky. I will begin delegating slots to people in about a week, as I want to make sure everything is being handled as smoothly as possible first.