Well, I decided to go for reviewing each level separatedly, so this is gonna be a bit long (also, italics is for emphasis).
The title screen of this hack shows some neat level being played on. The background looks kinda messy, and the color of the "Portals Stars" looks a bit weird too.
By the way, why is the title of the hack inverted? ?_?
The overworld is a bit linear, but it does its job. There's a perspective issue in the big mountain to the left of the beach. The top area looks pretty bland, and so do the top areas of the mountains, but I assume it's all still a WIP. The beach is alright, but you could add a little bit more of decoration to it.
Rocky Beach begins with a lot of venus fire traps and water - a pretty tough beginning for a first level if you ask me. o_o I quickly noticed the cutoff the vertical pipes cause on the horizontal one. The "waterfall" also looks honestly bad, and since this is a chocolate hack, you could've easily make it look like an actual waterfall.
The level itself is really short; the midway point isn't far from the beginning. I don't like it that the bonus takes me back to the beginning of the level, but otherwise, it was a rather creative bonus room, except that it takes way too long to be cleared. Beyond the midway, there's a jumping fish section and a bit of land with some badly miscolored bullet bill shooters - watch out for aesthetics.
Beach Fortress was a very annoying level; it was pretty tight to begin with - way too low ceiling - which only helped to increase the extreme and unfair difficulty. I got stuck in that first part once because the P-switch time ran out before the spiky - and miscolored - things went up. That section with falling platforms and thwimps was also really annoying; the way the thwimps jump makes that part really tough to go through without getting hit by them.
I suggest a redesign here, to be honest.
Beach Pipe begins with more of those lazy waterfalls. The blue pipes in the top of the first screen are as miscolored as the bullet shooters in the first level (I assume that's the same palette actually). Aesthetics may not be the main thing you should focus on, but it's still important to make your hack look at least decent
. Also, this level was extremely annoying because of this specific part:
1. I couldn't see those rocks coming;
2. Once the chuck starts throwing balls, I simply have no time to go up without getting hit; the only way to get past there was to scroll the camera left.
Afterwards, I have to take a key and use it as a block to enter a pipe. Just for professionality, you could use ExGFX and replace the key graphics with something else, since it's not meant to be used as a key in that part.
The cave that pipe takes me to has some really weird colors, and once again I must use a P-switch to get past it. It'd be kind of annoying if I accidentally dropped the pipe on lava... Always add reset pipes or doors when there's a fair chance the player can screw up a section and get stuck
. This happened a few times other than here in this hack.
Beach Cave is a cave (duh) with the same set of graphics as the cave on the previous level, and the same set of odd colors, too. And it's another P-switch based level... It's all about hitting a P-switch and running. It's really short, too. That big load of koopas in the end causes some extreme slowdown.
A Shortcut is uh... A bonus level? I personally think those should be secret, but this is your hack, so you get to decide. It's a, well, weird level too...
This weird "used" block spawning up probably happens because you're using the Switch Palace tileset (check it on
Also it seems like you ended the level in the middle of a screen? Press F1 in LM and finish it in the end of a screen instead... Uh, did you not notice that? o_o
Slightly by Ocean (the word is "slighty" btw) starts with some random question block formations. Hooray for those invisible blocks down in the pits so the player won't get stuck. \o/ The problems in this level begin in that muncher area. The enormous amount of enemies in there made this section slow down to death. It also made some platforms often disappear, which really isn't cool. I'm also not a fan of the chainsaws and the bullets falling out of nowhere. Don't abuse sprites; not only for avoiding slowdown, but also for the sake of fairness
Iggy's Castle Beach is the castle of this world. In the first area, it's pretty much impossible to distinguish solid blocks from unsolid blocks, which was kind of annoying. The second area has some oddly colored cement blocks and lava; that section mostly consists of straightforward running, and again, P-switches. I really think that you've used this P-switch gimmick way too many times for a single world.
This is also the last level in this demo.
To be fair, I think this hack needs a lot more work before it can be accepted. While the level design isn't too bad, it's often way too cluttered by enemies to the point it becomes unfair. The P-switch gimmick was also pretty overused throughout your levels and it became kind of repetitive.
Also, I recommend you to work more on aesthetics. Sure, you should focus on level design and all of that, but as I said before, it doesn't mean you should despise them completely. Work on making your hack look a bit better, and along with a better level design, it will be a great one.
Right now rejecting. Difficulty is definitely a "Hard", but it may change depending on what you'll do with your levels.
Good luck, too!
Avatar by Magi!