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Featured Hacks - Nominations and Discussion
Forum Index - SMW Hacking - SMW Hacking Discussion - Featured Hacks - Nominations and Discussion
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I hope I can express some support words about one of the nominated hacks - Mario Wants his Lemonade by Gamma V. If so:

Its atmosphere is very similar to classic Mario games, makes the player feel like playing an official Mario game made by Nintendo. This state can be said about almost every SMW hack made by Gamma V, whose one hack already got featured. Also, it's long enough to be satisfying, but short enough to not be exhausting and frustrating. By the way, all of this is why I chose this particular SMW out of the monstrous database to be played with an old-new friend that came to my place for the first time.

This is way I support this hack all the way to be featured!
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Originally posted by MasLak
I hope I can express some support words about one of the nominated hacks - Mario Wants his Lemonade by Gamma V. If so:


Feel free to! That hack is actually not awaiting verdict right now, but I guess there's nothing stopping anybody from discussing about any of the nominated hacks.

I'll keep your post in mind when we get to that hack. Thanks for your interest.
I'd like to open Mario Wants His Lemonade up for discussion, actually, given we have a vote for it already.

I personally vote decline for it. The level design is almost entirely repetitive with no real building upon the various obstacles the hack sets up, no real ramping up on the difficulty. Just the same obstacles repeated every few screens. Some levels are less repetitive than others, but they're the exception rather than the rule, unfortunately. On top of this, the hack is very short and easy overall- there's not much challenge to it. The atmosphere may be reminiscent of older Mario games, but the design is the most important thing here, and in my opinion, it falls very flat. A solid no from me.
Originally posted by MasLak
I hope I can express some support words about one of the nominated hacks - Mario Wants his Lemonade by Gamma V. If so:

Its atmosphere is very similar to classic Mario games, makes the player feel like playing an official Mario game made by Nintendo. This state can be said about almost every SMW hack made by Gamma V, whose one hack already got featured.


Eh, not really. See, the classic Mario games had levels that actually played with various ideas that evolved laterally through the CCST framework (Challenge, Caedence, Skill-Theme) which is the foundational basis of level design which is built upon, and it is ever enforced so strongly for the most part to create memorable and engaging levels one can write home about.

I did not get that experience with Mario Wants His Lemonade, because it played with the ideas too safely for me to see any real buildup on complexity, and that is where we differ, because Nintendo offers it in spades throughout their works that they made and it adds in an element of risk involved that gets you invested into the game, with satisfaction being the ultimate reward if you can overcome the challenges the game throws at you. Gamma V's Mario Wants His Lemonade are repetitive in setup to see no real buildup that would make me think twice before running off and jumping to the next spot to safely land on. Without a buildup of complexity, it leads to forgettable experiences, and this hack sadly is one of these experiences. I felt very little satisfaction when I beated the castle level of this hack. The only highlight I can say of the levels was that the desert level with Sumos (called Pokey Plateau which imho its a bit misleading as I felt the Sumos were the true baddies in the level) was the only interesting thing played because the enemies were placed in ways that you should be more careful about jumping, which I did felt a sense of challenge.

Lastly, when curating a game, there is an obvious expectation that you should have a game design ethos that speaks uniquely and creatively about what you make out there for other people to experience. If I wanted to enjoy a game that speaks to be akin to what Nintendo would do, id rather play a Nintendo game to get that fill. Fans can try to copy and emulate that as best as they can, but ultimately, it is preferable that they make something unique that speaks to their creativity, and I didn't get that with Mario Wants His Lemonade. It is indistinguishable from the many other SMW hacks out there that attempt to play "like Nintendo", with the only thing being that it is very short, 9 levels in total, but ultimately looks and plays like those other hacks with nothing unique to offer to set it apart from the other hacks like this one to be even worthy of curation, imho.

Basically, I do not recommend this hack to be featured for the reasons that it is too safe to be standout-ish as an example of an enjoyable creative experience for a SMW hack, so its a solid decline for me.

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On Pixel Art Requests: I generally do not accept work unless I either have the time, if I see your project worth my time to contribute towards, and that is usually me doing the approaching to you on that.
-I also do not accept speculative work as I do have various art I made on-hand with me.
-I am more receptive to equivalent exchange of resources in which case, you can DM me wherever I have an active presence on for the details.
-Other times I'm availible for your project is C3 request threads I may run.




Touhou Mario got no other votes but mine, which was a very certain no due to level design as well as technical issues. It's declined.

I have to agree with Nimono and StrikeForcer regarding Mario Wants His Lemonade. It's rather repetitive and doesn't do anything unique or really all that fun. Considering my vote to decline as well as the other votes, this is also declined.
interesting
I am delighted I will have the honor of nominating Claustrophobia

This is very unlike most hacks in the sense that it doesn't feel like a Mario where you do the beat the levels. It's like a mixture of indie games and mobile games, the latter in the sense that if you're ever bored and in your computer you can pick this up and do a level or two. There's an astoundingly huge selection of stages you can play, and if you don't find something fun or doable to your skill level, you can always pick another one.
The amount of polish that went into this is amazing. More than having a good skeleton, this game has a great and unique aesthetic appeal, with a really nice and fittingly upbeat soundtrack that only adds to it.

mhm mhm

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Twitter


- New Super Mario World (Pink Gold Peach) - A classic that never gets old to me. It's Super Mario World but EXPANDED!!!
- SMW Piranha Island (PokerFace) - Hard, but fun af. Has a dark atmosphere to it and reminds a lot of Touhou (probably bcuz of the music).
- Sicari: Remastered (Eevee) - WE NEED TO START OUR OWN FANBASE AND DEVIANTART PAGE!
- Super Mario World: The Lost Levels - Hard as f***, but fun as f***.
- Super Wakana Land - WAKANA SENPAI NEEDS TO BE PRAISED!!

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Originally posted by Koopster
I am delighted I will have the honor of nominating Claustrophobia

I wholeheartedly agree with this nomination.
I had the pleasure of testing it in its earlier stages and I can guarantee you that the levels themselves are pretty innovative and fascinating as a whole.
You might die a grand total of a thousand times, but you won't regret playing it.

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YouTube
For what it's worth, I played a little bit of Claustrophobia not too long ago. I only made it a few rooms in before I stopped because it's kaizo and I'm a baby, but what I played was rather well designed. This isn't a vote, per se, because I haven't played it nearly enough, but I support it for nomination anyway.
Originally posted by Hooded Edge
- New Super Mario World (Pink Gold Peach) - A classic that never gets old to me. It's Super Mario World but EXPANDED!!!
- SMW Piranha Island (PokerFace) - Hard, but fun af. Has a dark atmosphere to it and reminds a lot of Touhou (probably bcuz of the music).
- Sicari: Remastered (Eevee) - WE NEED TO START OUR OWN FANBASE AND DEVIANTART PAGE!
- Super Mario World: The Lost Levels - Hard as f***, but fun as f***.
- Super Wakana Land - WAKANA SENPAI NEEDS TO BE PRAISED!!


I second the support SMW Piranha Island's nomination for its visual theme of an overgrown plant-ridden island that also provided the opportunity to have varied level designs that provides a nice challenge. Its also one of the few SMW Hacks that I can say that it looks actually good when it comes to its default art style of SMW as bad as it is that ive said many times, because the palette and some custom assets fit right in to enhance its uniquely overgrown theme that redeems it as a consequence.

Sicari Remastered iirc was already featured. As for SMW: TLL , I don't really know much about that one so I wont really say if it does or doesn't. I'll get back to you all on that one soon.

New Super Mario World I don't have a lot to say since I didn't play it in full detail and when I did... it was a really safe experience because GD didn't do much with the gimmicks he had in store. Also it was rejected here: https://smwc.me/1410146

UPDATED EDIT - I finished playing version 2.1, and it is actually a better experience in the sense that the levels did have their layouts toned down to accommodate for the lack of damageboosting present and that the controls felt better to play, though I suppose its also due to me getting used to the physics as I gave this game another whirl. I'm still not used to how items are being picked up though, as I have to use another button to grab it as opposed to just holding the run button. I also like the graphics, in spite of the level sets being by and large ripped from various games, fit the level themes nicely for the most part. Same goes with the majority of the HDMA gradient use, as it adds to the aesthetics of the levels. The enemy graphics are also pretty cohesive in Redrawn's art style, both the base defaults and whomever Wakana hired to do the custom enemies.

However, as much as these improvements are a welcome sight, I'm not really sure it makes it up entirely for my experience to be worthy of nomination for featuring because there is a few levels I played that was unfun because of a few reasons. The reasons are - darkness as gimmick, being more than just thematic aesthetics of the levels because it makes instances where you get hit by an incoming enemy and fall into the pits you cant see ahead of time to be rather cheap in which no amount of mastery can overcome (e.g. Creepy Pasta, Sacrifices 3 and 5, 5 in particular as the most egregious level of the levels mentioned is a bit disjunctive with its pacing the level expects with its darkness as death gimmick and how players actually would be playing the level based on the layout.), distracting psychedelic colored-HDMA gradients and Exanimation that competes for the player's attention (Sacrifice 1, 5, 6, The Final Showdown. 1 in particular has those really fast boos that are hard to overcome in tight spaces on top of really fast accordion blocks and an ever present scarlet color), on top of the quiz level that more or less remain the same, which it could actually be retooled by focusing more on what the hack showed earlier in the game instead of extraneous information (such as SMWC user relationships, bust sizes of female characters not present in the hack) that people would have to look up for themselves to find the answer to. Also the Undertale levels have a critical flaw in which you cant really move diagonally which makes movement needlessly more precise than it should be when you have very narrow spaces that can be as narrow as a single block.

The rest of the game is pretty safe to me, even though it had gimmicks in them, though I felt they were missed opportunities to explore more of Wakana's moveset and limitations. That said, there were a few moments that I liked on the level design, such as the ON/OFF Switch Blocks in Ancient Building making certain blocks appear and disappear in ways that affect your progression in the ruins and Just Another Castle, with its creative use of snake eating blocks that also made some use of Wakana's flight abilities. I'd wish there was more of that in the way of level memorability.

I also have to say that the reward for completing the Lewd World isn't really that rewarding since one can easily stock up on 99 MP quite easily in many other levels you play in the game.

My final thoughts on this - I still don't support its nomination for featuring. Its visual themes while are pretty much on point for what you expect out of a user-centric fiction, could have used a bit more polish on its level design aspect in a way that could be more rewarding to play and master while taking better advantage of the modified moveset this game has. Because of that, it is a missed opportunity.

ORIGINAL EDIT - The author contacted me personally since I was looking at it from 1.0...take what is said below with a grain of salt, as im going to replay the game under 2.1
Which leaves me with Super Wakana Land...which I don't support it's nomination because of the level designs failing in various fundamental fronts such as that one ship level that tells you nothing about the order in which you have to find the flames, the questionnaire level which is overly indulgent even for this hack being an indulgencefest since not many people would share the author's tastes and relations...on top of the lategame being unfair with its darkness gimmicks and having to damageboost because of the amount of enemies being placed in ways to overwhelm the player and the gameplay front being counterintuitive to control when it comes to the action button mappings being subverted when players of SMW and hacks are hardwired to be instinctively hold the run button and how pressing down works.

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On Pixel Art Requests: I generally do not accept work unless I either have the time, if I see your project worth my time to contribute towards, and that is usually me doing the approaching to you on that.
-I also do not accept speculative work as I do have various art I made on-hand with me.
-I am more receptive to equivalent exchange of resources in which case, you can DM me wherever I have an active presence on for the details.
-Other times I'm availible for your project is C3 request threads I may run.




For what it's worth, since I've not been here for long, I'd like to vote for Super Wakana Land being featured. The game is quite impressive, changing up so much of the original that you may not guess it's even a Mario mod unless you already knew.
Sicari Remastered is featured already. No need to discuss this anymore.

Claustrophobia
I also support featuring Claustrophobia. The idea isn´t new, but its execution is better than in any similar hack before. Aesthetics, soundtrack and gameplay are extraordinarily enjoyable. A definitive YES from me, too.

SMW Piranha Island
I support SMW Piranha Island (PokerFace) for nomination, too. I can fully agree on this quote:
Originally posted by StrikeForcer
I second the support SMW Piranha Island's nomination for its visual theme of an overgrown plant-ridden island that also provided the opportunity to have varied level designs that provides a nice challenge. Its also one of the few SMW Hacks that I can say that it looks actually good when it comes to its default art style of SMW as bad as it is that ive said many times, because the palette and some custom assets fit right in to enhance its uniquely overgrown theme that redeems it as a consequence.

So i give this my YES as well.

Super Wakana Land
In contrast to StrikeForcer though, i support featuring Super Wakana Land. I wouldn´t support the 1.0, but the 2.1 got quite heavily remastered in innumerable many good ways (i.e. improving the controls compared to 1.0, removing the healing ability, etc.).

- The hack itself is also incredibly impressive. Alone the fact of changing so many behaviours of the player´s sprite makes you think you were playing a brand new game and not an SMW hack anymore.

- The level design, even if not the best on earth, is very unique though. (Almost) Every level has its own gimmick, which makes the hack fun and entertaining all the time. Many new hacks lack this point of variety, so this is an other big plus of Super Wakana Land.

- Also a very neat touch regaring the point above is, that the sacrifice-world levels always resemble a level of the world you´ve been in previously (in a harder execution though of course). This is only one of many aspects on which you can realise how much effort, love and details the author has put into this hack.

- Super Wakana Land also has a quite consistent difficulty curve in my opinion. Many people say, the last few levels are too hard, but since you can collect extra heart-containers during your playthrough everything is still playable without the need of using savestates. Yes the last world´s levels are significantly harder than a world 1 level, but there are enough way worse examples on this site, while SWL still keeps reasonable and playable.

- An other great point of this hack are the aesthetics. Even if only a few things are made from scratch the graphics in this hack are always very fitting for the level´s theme and not clashing in any way. The great music also always helps to underline the created atmosphere. It´s mysterious in "Gloomy manour", factory-ish in the Laboratories and generically happy in the first world grasslands.

TLDR:
Super Wakana Land isn´t perfect perhaps, but it is still outstandingly gorgeous and the author had put so much time and effort in this hack to make this an enjoyable experience. In my opinion he was more than successful with this. Every level has its own gimmick, keeping the hack interesting all the time. It has magnificent graphics and music and the dificulty is still bearable, due to the hck´s HP-system. In conclusion an absolute YES from me.

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I can´t say anything about "New Super Mario World (Pink Gold Peach)" and "Super Mario World: The Lost Levels" because i didn´t play these.

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Originally posted by Noivern
For what it's worth, I played a little bit of Claustrophobia not too long ago. I only made it a few rooms in before I stopped because it's kaizo and I'm a baby, but what I played was rather well designed. This isn't a vote, per se, because I haven't played it nearly enough, but I support it for nomination anyway.

Update the thread then you goof

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Twitter
"Piranha Island" had a lovely aesthetic and got way more mileage out of its theme than anybody could have ever expected. While I got a bit annoyed at all the fire-spitting Piranhas, I found it overall a fun experience even if it's a little bit harder than what I'd usually play. It has really awesome visuals and really awesome music. Even the world map was awesome despite the odd choice it was.
I nominate it.

"Super Wakana Land" is another excellent hack. Great level design, great music, great graphics. It has a ton of variety in themes and mechanics. Its new character helps transform the experience into something new, especially with how challenges are designed around the player's new mobility. The difficulty curve is pretty smooth and it was perfectly playable for someone like me. I only had difficulty with a few janky hitboxes and some of the last secret levels. There's a ton of secrets to find in what might otherwise be a pretty short hack.
I nominate it.
"Karoshi Mario" is a 35 Level romhack where the main goal is to kill Mario, featuring many creative ways to kill Mario. It's vanilla styled with graphics only being drawn when necessary (buttons, tile editing, etc).

Quick heads up:
There is a fake "End of Demo" level that is possible to beat in the middle of the game, so just tap the direction quickly to make the cement block text crush Mario. The game is aware of this, as the next level is called "i lied". It's actually a pretty funny fake out.


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nominating storks and apes and crocodiles.

this hack displays an excellence in the ethos of kaizo's sadism made by one of the most notorious hard level creators in the smw hacking community. this hack has been played to death and enjoyed by streamers and kaizo folks around the block.

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Originally posted by idol
nominating storks and apes and crocodiles.

this hack displays an excellence in the ethos of kaizo's sadism made by one of the most notorious hard level creators in the smw hacking community. this hack has been played to death and enjoyed by streamers and kaizo folks around the block.

I'm surprised no one has ever nominated this masterpiece before

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YouTube
i hate storks, morsel, you are the worst, supporting this nomination

it's very different to a typical Kaizo ROM hack, there are no traps like invisible coin blocks, no glitch abuse, just ridiculous difficulty

one criticism of this rom hack i have is that with the exception for the final level, levels don't have names, how are you supposed to refer to them? just a number... that's boring

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Legacy ports zip (now that those went down because Dropbox)
Originally posted by idol
nominating storks and apes and crocodiles.

this hack displays an excellence in the ethos of kaizo's sadism made by one of the most notorious hard level creators in the smw hacking community. this hack has been played to death and enjoyed by streamers and kaizo folks around the block.


voting yes for storks and no for seppuku

One of the greatest kaizo hacks ever made, this hack is truly evil and it's amazing. This hack also greatly changed the landscape of kaizo, just as the originals did. It remains the favorite hack of many well-known speedrunners and members of the kaizo community. The many praises and comments on the hack speak for themselves. There's a lot of kaizo hacks on this site, but storks is definitely a step above the rest in terms of quality, creativity, and innovation.
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