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Member of The Month: April

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It's that time of the month again where you get to read all about a couple of members of SMW Central. This month we have JackTheSpades as Member of The Month and Lightvayne as Staff of The Month.

JackTheSpades is a very helpful user, I've definately seen him around the ASM help forum and so on. Lightvayne is our newest administrator and has taken on his new role with a positive attitude.

Let's get straight on to the interviews.

MoTM: JackTheSpades
Originally posted by JackTheSpades' interview
1. When did you get started on SMW Hacking?
Oh gosh, that was way too long ago :x
If Youtube hadn't killed my old profile I could look up the old PMs but, oh well. It had to be somewhen in 2007/08 that I first used Lunar Magic. I saw those videos of ProtonJon and AzuraBlade49 and asked in the comments on how people make that stuff, soon to get a reply which told me it was a program called "Lunar Magic". A few minutes of tutorial videos and HOURS of trail and error later and I got it to work ;). Not that I produced anything decent back than. In fact, for the first few years I only made those "OMG it's my first hack look at how awesome it it" type of things... and I'm seriously glad that there seem to be no records left of these horrible hacks of mine :3

If there are any first-time hackers out there, listen to the advice of an old veteran. Once you finished your first hack, throw it in the trashcan. It's better that way.
That, or ask some people for their oppinions before making a grant release.

Anyway, that's how I got into this whole thing.

2. Tell us any of your projects that you're working on.
ROM Hacking wise, not much... actually close to nothing :P I have this project called Super Mario World FTW Edition (FTW Mario for short) that I've been working on for like 3 1/2 years now... laziness is a bitch I tell ya. It's a "VIP Mario" typo of hack. That is to say, vanilla graphics for the most and some ASM shenanigans. Unfortunately though, I only ever work on this when I feel like it, which often results in me taking half a year breaks from it... I guess I should just remove one World and get done with this already. I have backups and copies of this hack floating around all over my computer, and I don't want to clean up while this is ongoing out of fear to overwrite or delete something I still need :<

Other than ROM hacking, I make lots of tools, that nobody really seems to need xD (that's an exaggeration but at least it's not many). The only problem with me is, that once I got an idea on how I could possible code something, that idea just won't let go of me until I at least try it out. If in the end, the idea turn out to be fruitless I usually call it quits, though sadly(?) that being the case rather rarely, I end up making tools that aren't all that needed... or something...

3. What has gotten your interest towards ASM?
No idea actually... I think I just needed it so I learned it... maybe? In the end, I like programming and those sort of things, so I found it appealing anyway ^^'
ASM also helped me understand lots of fundamental things as to addressing and how that whole thing "intern" actually works. When coding C or other languages, you don't actually get a feeling for what's going on with registers, who many bytes a variable has and all those things. So I guess, knowing ASM helped me out there a lot.
I read Nesquik Bunny's ASM tutorial, though only to fill the gaps still left in my ASM knowledge. Then his sprite making tutorial followed by lots of trial and erroring... GOD, thinking about all the time I spend on ASM and ROM hacking, had I used that for school I'd have skipped a grade or two :<
Anyway, some time after that I also read up some HDMA tutorials and only "recently" how to make patches/hijacks and those nifty things :3
Yeah, I guess that sums it about up.

4. As a common reviewer, what do you look for when you play hacks?
Not that much actually. As far as the graphics and design goes, you don't need to "look for it", you see it even if you just look at a screenshot... If you really have to look for it though, that's usually a bad sign. Just good graphics alone don't make for a good hack though, as such, I also look at the way the level is build. Whether it's flat and/or boring or if the creator managed to get some challenge, variety and excitement in there.
I'm of course also looking for bugs or places that could cause serious problems, such as unfair deaths or even worse gamebreaking glitches. Lastly, I just see how much fun I have playing these hacks ^^. If you have fun, it usually can't be all that bad of a hack, can it (exceptions to this rule possible!) and that's about all there is to it.
I sometimes also read the reviews of the others to see if I missed something and/or if there is something I need to point out more for having been missed by them (rare but possible).

5. What can you say about the site's community?
Other than how much I love you all #smw{<3}
... ... ...too soon?
No, for real now. I love this community. I didn't really have any relationships with any of the users here before Vitor Vilela started talking to me, contacted me on Skype and eventually also dragged me over to IRC. Which, in the end, I'll always be grateful for ^^. I met lots of nice people in IRC and even got to talk to them more. So yeah, I really like this community for being friendly
(most of the time)
and putting up with a weirdo like me :>
Other than that, I view Everest as my mortal enemy (jokingly) for often beating me in answering problems in the General Help forum as well as being the only one close to me with the review-score
(for now)
. I also sometimes make fun of Ladida in her his comic-thread The Tale of Adam (which I love btw) or on IRC... though I have to hold back now due to recently obtained staff power on her his side.
In the end, I just love this site and the people here :> and I hope to stay for many more years to come.

SoTM: Lightvayne
Originally posted by Lightvayne's interview
1. How do you find managing SMWCP 2? Would you say you enjoy it?
I will admit there are moments that I am literally just pulling my hair out due to frustration or want to just toss my hands in the air and just drop the whole project.... but overall, I do enjoy it. It would be nice to get a bit more activity going on it, but even as a project leader, there is only so much you can do beside bugging people all the time that promised to do something and then plan falls through. We are so close to the end, but most of the work left requires ASM knowledge and people who are fluent in it and actually want to help are far and few in between.

2. How are you finding your new administrator role?
I seem to be doing ok with it so far. I was actually an admin here once before for a short time back in...2010 I think? But left due to some irl stuff. Not much has changed since then :P

3. The graphics remoderation project is a very lengthy task as everyone knows. What makes you so keen to run such a large project?
To be honest, I really didn't want to start it when I did. I kinda wanted to wait for SMWCP2 to be finished before I took on another large project like this. But overall I got an awesome team behind me helping out and this project it moving along pretty well. We are nearing the half way mark and hopefully as we get towards some of the newer files on the list, the process will start speeding up a bit as most of the work that we are currently doing will be already done (map16 conversions, sample levels, etc). It's also great we have a few users that are also helping out with the project. Users like GrandChaos9000, tcdw, Mirann and S.C.O.R.P.I.O.N have been a huge help in converting some of these files so I would also like to thank those users also. Keep up the good work guys. ^_^

4. You've been at SMW Central for a very long time now, what's kept you sticking around?
Kieran pays me very well; $18/hr is a good start off base for an admin position. :)
I think in general I stick around for the people here.. I've made a lot of good friends here over the years. I also love Mario games, so having an awesome editor like LM that gives you so many possibilities for hacking is great. Outside of SMWCP2 I've even got my own little side project started up that I can hopefully show off at the next C3. ;)

5. Forum Games seems to be quite a thing that you like, with your Mario Kart game and #office, as well as moderating it, what is it you like about it?
In general I just love games. Video games, board games, you name it. The Mario Kart game that I run, believe it or not I made up almost 15 years ago as an actual board game. I always had my friends coming around asking if we could play it. At the time is was made up out of construction paper, a shoe box and a large piece of wood, but everyone loved it.

6. With that, is there anything else you'd like talk about?
Eat your Wheaties and stay in school.

Other than that, I just want to give a shout out to everyone that has helping out with the SMWCP2 project so far. The list of names it way to long to post here, but I do want to mention we are still looking for help with some ASM/sprite stuff so if you are reading this, contact me so we can wrap this up. I still have a goal of trying to get this done by C3 in July. :P

That's all for this month. Congratulations, JackTheSpades and Lightvayne!
Congratulations Jack, you sure are helpful and active, and I was expecting for this to come sooner or later. #ab{:LOL:}
Congrats for Lightvayne, you'll sure be a nice admin for the site.
Congratulations to both the member and staff member of the month! I've noticed JackTheSpades been very helpful around the forums, whether it be in the hack moderation forum or the General SMW hacking forum, so I'm very glad to see the title passed to him. But lets not forget about our SoTM, Lightvayne; He's a great leader to SMWCP2 and I can foresee him being a great leader for the community!
ya its about time you got motm, jack. congrats #ab{@_@}

lightvayne again? wow who rigged this? wait...
Jack, you have worked pretty hard on a lot of things so you certainly deserve it. Same for Lightvayne as well.

Good choices this month. Well done to both of you!

Edit: (below)

Originally posted by JackTheSpades
Other than that, I view Everest as my mortal enemy (jokingly) for often beating me in answering problems in the General Help forum as well as being the only one close to me with the review-score
(for now)

Sign of tension? I never noticed apparently. Heh quite surprised to see this but oh well.
It's about time Jack got MotM! It's been a while I see him posting on the hacking help forum like all the time. :P

Congrats to Lightvayne too, I'm sure you'll do a great job as an admin! #smw{:peace:}
Wheaties are gross.

you get paid for being admin!?
JackTheSpades deserved to be staff.
He keeps replying on my ASM questions :]

Lightvayne also deserves to keep his throne
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I, like Jack have played and reviewed a lot of hacks myself (even if a good portion of the ones I played took only 30 minutes), so I know that it takes great persistence, and that laziness could eventually just get in the way.

I was hoping to score higher here and be more poplar than everyone else, but this guy more than deserved Member of the Month for his dedication.
Having a score can only motivate you to a certain level. Laziness sure does get in the way for me. At least the absence of hacks to review recently allowed a small break from hack playing and reviewing for me.
So yeah, I thought I'd wait until the end of the month for my "Thank you" reply as to not miss anyone, but knowing these threads I didn't expect anyone to post in here after the first few days anyway.
But hey, just to be sure :>

So, thanks to everyone for the kind words here and also to those who congratulated me on IRC :> I'll try to stay as awesome helpfull as I am...
Also (late) congrats to Lightwayn.
Welp, I'm gonna miss the custom color :< need to get staff power so I can keep them >:D
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