Socket the Hedgeduck (hack progress)

Discussion in 'Showroom' started by GenesisDoes, Feb 9, 2016.

  1. GenesisDoes

    GenesisDoes Well-Known Member Member

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    (No, "Socket the Hedgeduck" is not an avian O.C.; it's an in-progress hack of Sonic 1, which aims to port Socket/Time Dominator's levels to the Sonic the Hedgehog engine!)

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    A few months ago, I discovered about and played a somewhat obscure Genesis game on my Everdrive MD called "Socket"/"Time Dominator", which many people label as a poor Sonic clone, due to it having monitor-like powerup objects, a "High Speed Zone", spring-like objects, (poor) slope physics, checkpoints, and ring-like collectibles for health (sparks). Although I really liked the concept of Socket and the different, non "press-right-to-win" level layout styles and themes, I was greatly disappointed in the poor slope physics and slow overall speed of the Socket character, and wondered if the Sonic the Hedgehog engine would handle the levels much better.

    This advanced hack is an unofficial port of Socket/Time Dominator assets (music, level layouts, art, objects, and more) to the Sonic the Hedgehog Engine.
    =====================================

    • Modified menus
      • New SEGA Chant, SSRG Logo screen
      • New Title Screen with options to toggle extended music playlist and bonus stages
        (press "B" or "C" buttons, respectively)
      • Level Select cheat (up-down-left-right) enables both level select and Debug Mode cheats
      • New Level Select screen, with 3 pages of levels
    • New Zones, title cards, level and cycling palettes, art, level layouts, deformed backgrounds, etc.
      • Title cards have been extended to handle acts 1-7 (especially for High Speed Zone)

      • Normal levels
        • Each zone has 3 acts
          • 2 are pure ports from Socket
          • 3rd act is original, has a boss room
        • The Zones
          • Emerald Forest Zone (EFZ)
          • Treasure Castle Zone (TrCZ)
          • Olein Cavern Zone (OCZ)
          • Antiquity Zone (AZ)
          • Stone Age Zone (SAZ, New)
          • Future Zone (FZ)
          • Time Castle Zone (TCZ)
          • Time Lord Zone (TLZ, formerly Final Zone)
      • Bonus levels
        • Each level has either 2 or 3 acts
          • Levels can be accessed by jumping onto a door object in a level
          • Completing the level/dying takes you back to previous level. No lives are decremented
          • Completing the level warps you elsewhere in the previous level
        • The Zones
          • Lights (BZL)
          • Castle (BZC)
          • Lava (BZLa)
          • Fence (BZF)
      • Special Stages
        • Normal S1 rotating special stages have been replaced with standard platforming levels.
          • Reaching the signpost without dying will award you a Chaos emerald via the Special Stage Results screen
          • Dying will not award you a Chaos emerald, but will not decrement lives.
          • Obtaining 50 rings in the zone will earn you a continue (disabled in the v0.3 demo)
        • Each special stage are ports of the "High Speed Zone" acts from Socket
    • New YM2612 tunes
      • MegaPCM Driver
      • Ports of Socket music
      • New music for the other acts of levels in the extended playlist, a separate "good"/"bad" playlist (based if Sonic has all the chaos emeralds) for some levels
      • Music slots ranging from $80-$9F and expanded to $E5 - $FF
    • New/ported objects where necessary
      • New object art/mappings where necessary
      • Custom door object for level warps
      • Art edits
    • Various SCHG/SSRG bug fixes and tutorials, and other original code
      • Expanded Sonic 1 Water tables (AZ and BZLa)
      • Implemented Sonic 1 ROM Chunks and removal of Sonic 1 loop system (ROM chunks now expanded upto $FF chunks, new)
      • Touch-pop monitors
      • S1 New zone guide
      • Walk-jump, spike, and other bug fixes
      • Zone-agnostic objects
      • Spindash
      • Boss areas
      • Title Card has its own song

    Although this hack is still quite a WIP, shown below are various media of the hack's progress.

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    Video

    • Tutorials
    • Help
      • ProjectFM, Clownacy, Nineko, MainMemory: Help with expanding ROM Chunks to $FF/Basic Q&A
      • LuigiXHero: Hack help and bugfixes
      • Firerat: Optimizations on the game's object handler and other bugfixes
      • Nineko: Rainbow Road song (from his publicly released SoniNeko SMPS pack, for Bonus Zone Fence FG2)
      • AbysmalLeopard: Enlarged GHZ Ball and Level Select BG art
      • "Jakob": IRL friend bug testing on real hardware
    • Tools
      • Editors/Misc
        • Techokami: Socketripper phps script and level rips at spriters-resource
          (this hack wouldn't exist without it!)
        • GenesisFan64: Socket disasm (used for directly ripping palettes)
        • MainMemory: SonLVL and S2NA support
      • Art
        • Clownancy (et. al.): Capt. PlanED
        • KanedaFR: Gens KMod (for ripping art and palettes)
        • Selbi: Sonic 1 Text Editor, Selbi's Parallax Editor
        • ComputerNerd/Sonic16: RetroGraphicsToolkit
        • Hivebrain: PCXPal v4.0
        • Xenowhirl: SonMapED
      • Audio
        • Puto, Nineko: XM3SMPS and XM4SMPS
        • ValleyBell: VGM2MID, MID2SMPS, SMPSPlay, PCM2DPCM Converter, GRC2MID
        • Apollolux: VGM2PRE
        • Shiru: VGM Music Maker

    Demo Release (v0.3/SHC16 build)
    Sega Mega Drive & Genesis Steam Workshop item

    Known issues:
    • Completing the final zone for demo (Antiquity Zone 3) sends player back to the Sega screen
    • Inability to obtain all 6 emeralds in normal gameplay. Big Ring object disabled when trying to access HSZ6, due to issues in the modified SS layout loader loading HSZ6.
    • Special Stage Results screen does not actually award a Continue upon collecting 50+ rings, disabled due to issues with the Continue Screen
    • Bosses are disabled, and boss areas are incomplete. The end-level capsule is there, though, for completing the level
    • Screen tearing issues when using warp doors and in BZF
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2016
    FireRat, Lone Devil, KCEXE and 12 others like this.
  2. LuigiXHero

    LuigiXHero Well-Known Member Member

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    No download link?

    Edit: You should also look into mid2smps

    Edit 2: I'm willing to help. If you want. My skype is the same as my username here.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2016
  3. Burst

    Burst Embrace the Darkness Member

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    This looks cool! I watched the video and in the Music of Treasure Castle Zone, i would like to here more bass. But other then this, this looks very awesome! Totally going to play it when it's released!
     
  4. Clownacy

    Clownacy UP - ON - CPU Staff

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    Why'd you attribute the 'Zone Agnostic objects' to Nemesis, when the link takes you to a guide by Mercury? Speaking of credits, thanks for crediting me for what little help I did. I wasn't expecting it. It feels like yesterday I gave a certain hacker some code for a placeholder animation script, just to see, days later, that they'd updated their hack with the new animation, completely unchanged, and with no mention of me whatsoever.
     
  5. AbyssalLeopard

    AbyssalLeopard Well-Known Member Member

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    Boy, this reminds me back in time when I was thinking about using Socket level art in a Sonic hack. I always wanted to see this happening sooner or later. Nice job so far, I'm looking forward to new updates!
     
  6. GenesisDoes

    GenesisDoes Well-Known Member Member

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    Alright, I'll PM you later this week. (Wanted to gauge interest in the hack before posting a DL Link and at least show I am doing something as a trialist, and looks like people like the idea.)

    Oops, how did I confuse Nemesis with Mercury? Also, I meant "MID2SMPS" not "MID2VGM". (Updated OP Credits, and your welcome Clownacy. Ingrate other hacker :p)
     
  7. redhotsonic

    redhotsonic Also known as RHS Staff

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    If you read his post properly, you'll see he put that he "might post a demo build of the hack after OCZ is completed" =P



    Anyway, this looks pretty sweet. I have played this game before because a friend reccomended it (because he knew I liked Sonic), and yeah, it was a Sonic knock-off really. But still, looking forward to this hack.
     
  8. Natsumi

    Natsumi Markey's Member

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    I do like the art here. But I personally don't think it fits into a Sonic game of any sort. Its just... How I'd say, has a Disney feel to it. If this was a Mickey Mouse game, such as World of Illusion, this would fit the theme perfectly, Y'know. Even the music makes me think of Disney. Also the contrast between the background and foreground planes is not good. In Sonic games its crucial to be able to see objects and platforms clearly, and in this there is just not enough saturation by far. Speaking of the music, it just feels "empty" to me. I don't know exactly what to call it, but it just doesn't have that something, that Sonic games' music always had. Not that its bad either, but you could touch it up and get perhaps better instruments. Aside from that, the hack seems hugely laggy. Given its Sonic 1, lag isn't a new thing, but there is a huge excess of it lying around. I think its because of the abundance of platform objects. The game can handle maybe 10, and some rings and enemies, but not, say, 30 on single vertical strip. The levels seem tall (which I appreciate, too many custom levels feel flat and small), but it gives more issues with lag and object management. You need to keep in mind that some of these objects you use take up fair much CPU time, and having lot of them eats CPU too much. Other than all the complaints, it seems average at best at its current state.
     
    Robot Echidna likes this.
  9. Pacguy

    Pacguy Not as active as I used to be... Member

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    This looks interesting! I haven't heard of "Socket/time dominater" before, but the art looks nice! I'll have to check out the game on my Nomad later to get more impressions on how the port should look like, but you've definitely gotten my interest.
     
  10. RaideinSlash

    RaideinSlash Can't code, does it anyway. Member

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    Looks great!
    Can't wait 'til there's a demo.
     
  11. Chaotix

    Chaotix Boredom Incarnate Member

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    Looks really damn nice so far! Like others have said, can't wait for a demo!
     
  12. GenesisDoes

    GenesisDoes Well-Known Member Member

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    I've saved this as my last Trialist post, and since the OP in February, have made a lot of improvements and additions to Socket the HedgeDuck

    Video of latest progress


    Progress since OP:
    • Levels
      • TrCZ3 Boss area (with palette swap)
      • OCZ 1,2, and 4/HSZ3
      • BZL 1-3
      • BZC 1-3 (WIP)
    • New/modified objects
      • Ported and modified S2 CPZ Speed Booster
      • Created TD Block for BZC
      • Created electrocuter for BZL
      • More subdoor types for $4F Warp Door
      • Changed MZ Weight/Crusher art
    • Screens
    • Engine changes
      • Added new music playlists for acts 2-4
    No demo download yet until I finish OCZ3 and the Bonus Zone stages (BZC 2-3, BZF, and BZLa). Work on BZF will be interesting, because Socket uses a special path swapper to swap solidarity between the FG and BG chunks, and BZLa does a S3K Sky Sanctuary-like scrolling of the FG chunks. ETA end of March or mid-April for demo #1.
     
  13. BinBowie

    BinBowie ☆빈보위☆ Member

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    From what I can see, this project looks very promising. I really like the doors that warp you around, it's something you never see in Sonic hacks.

    My one complaint is the music. It's noisy and doesn't loop. Hopefully you can take care of that.

    I can't wait to see this project in a playable state. It looks like a lot of fun and the art edits are quite good.
     
    Animemaster likes this.
  14. Ravenfreak

    Ravenfreak Incineroooaaarr! Member

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    I really like the artwork and gimmicks you've added. Socket is one of my favorites on the Genesis, even if it's a Sonic clone. However like Bakayote stated, the music needs lots of work. I know you seem to be focusing on other things, but hopefully the music will be fixed before there is a release. Honestly that's the only complaint I have about the hack.
     
    Animemaster likes this.
  15. GenesisDoes

    GenesisDoes Well-Known Member Member

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    Yeah, I know about the music. The stock Socket music I'm convolutedly converting via VGM2MID and then MID2SMPS, due to Socket using a custom GRC sound engine. I'm ripping the instruments from the VGM and putting them back into the SMPS conversion, creating high quality conversion. However, VGM2MID doesn't seem to convert DAC at all into the MIDIs, and the MIDIs don't have looping, so some editing of the MIDIs will be required.

    These SMPS conversions will be fixed for the demo.

    EDIT: Wow, meant MID2SMPS not "MIDI2VGM"
     
  16. Natsumi

    Natsumi Markey's Member

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    DAC is separate from PSG and FM instruments, and is something you will have to port yourself. The MegaPCM will probably be helpful on that regard as its not a terrible hack of a DAC driver like Sonic 1's stock driver is.
     
    vladikcomper and Egor The Cat like this.
  17. BinBowie

    BinBowie ☆빈보위☆ Member

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    If you need any music for your hack I may be of service.
    PM me if you're interested.
     
  18. GenesisDoes

    GenesisDoes Well-Known Member Member

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    Getting closer to a demo release!

    More progress since OP
    • Ported OOZ beta ball gimmick to OCZ.
      Riding it toggles solidarity for the mine cart rails!

    • Added song loops and MegaPCM DAC streams to Socket songs created with VGM2MID/MID2SMPS
    • Created OCZ3 and boss area
    • Finished most of BZF
      • Created a generic animated art object (BZF Lollipop, Light, Tree)
      • Created BZF Missile enemy
      • Created BZF Hoop thing
    • Added more songs, improved others
    Pics/Vids:

    Video

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    Just need to finish the OCZ background, create BZLa, and fix a few rough edges before a demo build!

    EDIT: Forgot video
     
  19. A-S-H

    A-S-H Moderator and Host of the SMPS Competition Member

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    I wouldn't mind playing this! It's very promising hack at my point of view. *patiently awaits release*
    Also, if you want some SMPS help, I'm also available so PM me if you would like some.
     
  20. GenesisDoes

    GenesisDoes Well-Known Member Member

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    Got a ton of progress done on the hack in the past week, including:

    • Creating a functional 3-page level select menu
    • Making more SMPS conversions
    • Finishing off OCZ (including BG and palette cycling)
    • Completing BZLa
      • In this level, Sonic must run to the top of the spiral staircase around the tube,
        away from the deadly water-lava accelerating upwards!

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    (Options text a placeholder stub for now)


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    Video

    A demo will be available this week after I fix a big bug with the bonus stage doors.