Sonic 2 RS Version 1.5 (visited) Demo

Discussion in 'Discussion and Q&A Archive' started by Joshwoakes, Feb 3, 2014.

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  1. Joshwoakes

    Joshwoakes Active Sonic Hacker Member

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    I started working on working on this hack again back in 2013 after my previous hack was cancelled. as i was working this hack i was testing the level layout to check for any glitches that i could fix and yes did find a few glitches but managed to fix them. so anyway the boss hits are the same 8 hits only. the palette for emerald hill zone has changed so its no longer an colour rape or eye rape but the palette for emerald hill zone has a very bright green like effect im not sure if that will hurt your eyes it doesn't to seem to hurt my eyes so i don't think to does and sonic is now light blue just like in sonic G6 if you noticed that. tails is no longer the hard mode and i have started using sonic 2 mp3 tool again just for this demo and full version of this hack then i will get rid of sonic 2 mp3 tool for good. one thing please don't ask what happened to the background in emerald hill zone act 2 because i don't know and i'm currently trying to fix that. the physics are the same and sonic jump height is normal. 

    so play it your yourself 

    click  here to download

    or watch my game-play video 

    click here to watch video

    Please note that this hack is not fully finished and still under construction. more levels and rings and other stuff will be added in the full

    version

    Please tell me your opinions on this hack and tell me if any thing needs to be changed or improved and i will make sure that i change something or improve something.
     
  2. TheStoneBanana

    TheStoneBanana banana Member

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    Well, downloading this hack, I was expecting something pretty good since you posted last time. Well... first off, I got a really uneasy feeling by just looking at this title screen:

    [​IMG]

    This is just a simple pallete swap and a text edit. Not a good sign. Moving on...

    [​IMG]

    DEAR GOD WHAT HAPPENED TO SONIC?!?

    He looks like he was like, bleached or something. God. Hope he's okay.

    Also, note the "stubs" coming out of the ground. You could of made that look better, you know.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    These are just a few example of the poor design choices in terms of level design.

    Past this point though, I closed off my emulator and stopped. I'm not going to waste my time with this.

    You see, this is, well, baby steps. I mean, good for you if this is your first attempt at hacking. But, the problem is, you've had since like, what, June, to make this better? And, well, you haven't. To state it very plainly, Mr. Woakes (as you like to call yourself), you need to take your time. Don't rush. As I learned WAAAY back before I joined SSRG, at many times, something very amazing takes alot of time and effort, something you haven't put forth much of either. So, please, take my advice, and make this something good. Something that'll keep me hooked. Otherwise, sir, you're just waisting your time. Good luck.

    (ALSO, for the record, it's not a demo if it's like barely finished. It's a beta or something.)
     
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  3. Crimson Neo

    Crimson Neo I changed a lot. Member

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    I think the only thing that has changed in this version was the palette, I presume.

    EDIT: I hoped this version would be better, but I was wrong. :
     
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  4. faith

    faith Well-Known Member Member

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    I echo what everyone else is saying, but I decided to go farther into the hack and I found this:

    [​IMG]

    WHY? What have you done to Hill Top's background?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 3, 2014
  5. Joshwoakes

    Joshwoakes Active Sonic Hacker Member

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    now i don't mind you going into levels that are not edited or  not finished using the cheat save state. but i don't know how that happened im still working on Casino night zone act 2. but i'll try and find out what happened there and fix it for you  
     
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  6. KCEXE

    KCEXE Active Member Member

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    My goodness, this again? I really though it was curtains for this hack after all the hullabaloo from months ago. Anyhow, I don't see any improvements from the last time at all. Sure, there are a few minor edits here and there, but nothing really special. Also, what the hell is it with you using that prehistoric Sonic 2 Mp3 Tool? Seriously man, that's so out of date.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 3, 2014
  7. Joshwoakes

    Joshwoakes Active Sonic Hacker Member

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    ok. i use sonic 2 mp3 tool because i don't know how to import custom music into the sonic 2 ROM without it messing up and plus i don't know the format it needs to be in and i don't have any software that can convert a mid file into "music" bin file to import in to the sonic 2 ROM

    if that makes any sense to you   
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 3, 2014
  8. Starfruity

    Starfruity Newcomer Trialist

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    Now, I may be just a newbie, but I can tell that this hack has potential, despite it not looking so great right now. Here's some tips:

    1. Improve object positions. Bridges overlapping with regular ground doesn't look right. Also, space out those rings a bit more, and move them away from the floor.

    2. Change those god damn pallets! They're fucking up my eyes! I never saw the old versions, but these are pretty bad on their own. I'd recommend making Sonic darker than before rather than lighter. If you're not going to change the artwork of the zones, you should come up with some uniquer pallets and new themes that will still work with the zone's artwork as it is. For example, in my hack, I changed the greens in Green Hill to a lighter, turquoise color (but not one that burns your eyes), redesigned the background using existing 8x8 tiles, changed the name to Frost Valley, and presto! Completely new level. Just making colors brighter isn't very creative, and kills everyone's eyes!

    3. New concepts are important. Don't just make basic level layout hacks; no one likes those. Try adding some new moves in, or add new characters, or something like that.
     
  9. Joshwoakes

    Joshwoakes Active Sonic Hacker Member

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    (this is final reply) i will improve this hack but im going to need some help.
     
  10. FFuser

    FFuser a.k.a Darklight Member

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    I'll have to say I don't mind if it's only a layout hack that tries to arrange the level in a different (hopefully interesting and fun) way. The simplest changes can make a whole new experience. Do what you like/understand the best and get better at it.

    Having said that, the layouts will def need some more work and care put into them to be made into something interesting. Some suggestions:

    -More/different types of objects to interact with other than the platforming objects like obstacles/enemies to make it challenging to traverse through the level. There's a lot of dead space where there's basically nothing to do but run and jump with very little danger. There should be breaks in that but don't overdo it either. Overloading a game with tricks, traps and frame-perfect jumps can be too frustrating as well.

    -I also think there are too many platforms that make it too easy to jump from one to the next that they might as well be solid ground to run across. Even if it's the first zone, take a little more advantage of Sonic's jump ability/range.

    -Don't give away rings and extra lives like candy and definitely don't put two 1up monitors within close proximity to each other (potential infinite life loop). The Giant loop with 100+ rings and the 25 ring monitors in a row was amusing, but completely unnecessary (also an infinite life loop).

    -Too many blindspots. Example: areas where you're supposed to go down to progress in the level, but you can't actually see that, so the player has to take a leap of faith to proceed (if the player is wrong though, then he just lost a life to a poor design choice). Either make lower areas that you have to reach like that visible before you make the leap or have some rings leading to it so the player knows he's not in imminent danger.

    I'm not an expert or anything, so I can't go that in-depth with advice, but still if you want to improve you should take some careful consideration of the changes you're making to your hack. You can do some research on level design advice (even one of the stickied topics on this site has tips on the subject) and you can even draw some inspiration from the level design of the official 2D Sonic games (explore them... they have a lot more to offer than most people even realize) or some of the good level design from some of the more popular hacks in this community. Anyway good luck and take your time.
     
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  11. Misinko

    Misinko Oh SHIT it's the Biolizard! Member

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    Want help? Look at your last thread. People have been outright spelling out what to do to make your hack better.
     
  12. JeffCharizardFlame

    JeffCharizardFlame Escape Reality and Play Video Games Member

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    I have to agree with FFuser in this situation. You should really try to give your players a chance and something different than the normal stuff. This is just my opinion, but the palettes that you have placed in the game are more of an eyesore than the original palettes. More emphasis should be put on the gameplay at the moment, then worrying about the colors and stuff later. I'm no expert either, but I have hacked games privately in the past, so I have some experience. I've learned from my experiences that you shouldn't spend too much time with the looks of a game first, the programming should be done first. Again, that was just my opinion, but just throwing that out there. And with the hack that I'm going to be doing, I'm going to be trying to add more stuff in, change it up. You should try and do the same. I mean, after all, isn't a hack designed to be a different take on the game you're hacking?
     
  13. Moryo

    Moryo Video Games. Member

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    I played the hack and oh boy there is quite a bit wrong. I only played act 1 and a tiny bit of act 2 and here is a screenshot reel of what is wrong that I found:

    [​IMG]

    oh god that palette it hurts my eyes its too bright. also where is environmental detail like plants and trees?

    [​IMG]

    why would you put this here? just why....

    [​IMG]

    I found this when I bounced on the spring and randomly hit something in the sky so I moved around a bit when jumping on the spring and was able to go right over the brick. I ran right a bit and it just dumped me at some later part of the level...

    [​IMG]

    yeah. there is also another weird invisible brick above the spring that I hit once.

    [​IMG]

    I don't think I have ever seen an invisible wall in a classic sonic game other than areas wayyy above or below the maps that you should not be. This prevents freedom the explore different routes of the level and just isn't good.

    [​IMG]

    you could have added something more interesting than constantly jumping on these blocks. also there is a severe lack of rings in some areas. they are just plastered wherever.

    [​IMG]

    I managed to go through so many walls its ridiculous...

    [​IMG]

    ................................................ I died...

    [​IMG]

    yeah seriously you could have at least put geometry in these places instead of random walls where you won't want people to go... also the platform is just levitating. It doesn't look good.

    Man that was quite a bit of stuff with just act 1 and some of 2. After that I just couldn't continue. It needs a lot! of work.
     
  14. faith

    faith Well-Known Member Member

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    ok. i use sonic 2 mp3 tool because i don't know how to import custom music into the sonic 2 ROM without it messing up and plus i don't know the format it needs to be in and i don't have any software that can convert a mid file into "music" bin file to import in to the sonic 2 ROM

    if that makes any sense to you   




    There is a tutorial made by nineko for converting a .mid file to an .xm file to an SMPS file (Sega Genesis/Mega Drive's music format). Here it is.

    Next, you have to convert it to the Sonic 2 format, because once you're done with that guide, it will be in Sonic 1 format. Go to Music Pointer Fixer, load your .bin file, set it to "S1 to S2F", press "SCAN" to get addresses, click on "S2F voice conversion" and "Tempo fix", so the voices and tempos are in S2 format, then press "FIX!" and save your file. You should get a message that says "FIXING DONE!" Then get the Sega Data Compressor, under "Compress", click "Saxman", fill out the boxes and press "Compress". You're done! BINCLUDE it into your disassembly, and if you get an error that has to do with the size of the Sound bank, make some room for the file, you can delete one song and have its pointer point to another song. (Temporarily).

    Also...

     


    I'm not sure if you want to know, but here's a thread to an older version of this hack and Selbi posted a video about it on the thread, that's the only way you're going to find out about the old one and see it in action. (Warning: May fuck up your eyes badly). Joshwoakesm deleted the old version and the video he made about it, so go see's Selbi's video, reaction included.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2014
  15. SuperEgg

    SuperEgg I'm a guy that knows that you know that I know Member

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    Well, it seems you've decided to get back into the saddle, which is good. Nice to see you've decided to do away with that horrid intro on your video. That makes viewing it less of a chore.

    Now, to the meat of the course. Everybody has already covered everything that needs to be said, so I'm going to take the lazy road and say, whatever, it's horrid. Palettes are bad, layouts are horribly designed, and then there's the music...

    But at the same token, it has improved slightly since your last attempt. The palettes, though rather bright, horribly mapped, and definitely....mix mashed, is definitely more tolerable than your last outing. My eyes aren't bleeding this time, so that's a start.

    Of course, the palettes are not the main issue, the layouts are. Let me tell you bud, having springs everywhere to change your direction is not a good level design. Having four tunnels in the ground, and having only one lead to the next path, and the other three lead to death, is not good design. In fact, it is rather dickish. And of course, you're odd chunk placement is just an eyesore. You know, the more I watch your hack, the more I realize, your layouts are more akin to Mario. The flow of a Sonic level is different from what you have. You must understand, Sonic levels are supposed to flow naturally. Of course, what is flow?

    Flow, in the tense of a Sonic level, is when the level goes from point A to point B with limited guessing on the players part on where to progress. Some will argue that my explanation means "hold Right to win," but it is much more complicated than that. For example, in stock CPZ2 in Sonic 2, there are many times where you will go through the pipes and end up in an area where you have to go left. A friend of mine said that is horrible level design, as it is not straight. That mentality is incorrect, simply because the game gives you and idea to where you have to go. Usually when you exit said pipes, there is a wall to the right of the exit that is clearly visible to the player. That signifies the player needs to go the opposite direction. This is an example of flow, as the level even though changes direction, it doesn't just halt and the player has to guess on which direction to go. It is natural progression that can be inferred immediately by the player.

    Here is a list that should help you better design levels.

    - First off, branching paths. In your video, EHZ 1 is shown to have many tunnels, with three quarters of them leading to death, and if you go straight, you hit a wall. Why? That is horrible design simply because it stops flow. There is no indication that if you go right, there will be a wall that will impede progress. Knowingly, the argument will be about the extra life that you've tucked away for later use. That is not good design. Extra goodies should be discovered by natural level exploration, not forced, flow stopping methods. Moving past that point, you could've easily instead made that wall keep going somewhere else, maybe instead change it to an alternate upper path. And with the tunnels, you could have them lead somewhere else, maybe to a different underground area. And that leads to my next point.

    - Lay off the god damned bottomless pits. I can't stress this enough. Bottomless pits are just plain bad design, especially when you put tunnels that one would assume would lead somewhere. Now, bottomless death pits can be used properly if you put it at a place that would make sense. I can't stop thinking about those tunnels, as your level design doesn't suggest those tunnels would lead to death. On that note, don't deliberately lead players to their deaths. There is no challenge to that, all it does is frustrate players.

    - Chunk placement: Oi, I thought you had finally got this. Your underground/cave areas are fine, it has room for improvement, but those chunks usually mix well. It's the above ground areas where you have trouble with. You can't make chunks that aren't naturally supposed to float on their own be the first chunk of a floor platform. You might have plopped obj74's all over the place, or changed the collision of the wall to make it to where the player doesn't just fall through said chunks, but that doesn't fix the fact that it doesn't make sense. As I said earlier, this is Sonic, not Mario. You can't just blindly plopped on chunks and it work fine, as each chunk is different and doesn't match with each other, either artistically, or flow wise. Actually, you might want to fix linearity as well. I'm noticing you're afraid to use your slope chunks. Why? Because most of your levels are in 90 degree angles. With the exception of the occasional loop-de-loop, the level terrain is boring. Also, you might want to learn how to properly use the waterfall chunks, as there was that one part that confused even me.

    - Object Placement: This needs work. You've got springs, monitors, and rings all over the place. I can't remember who said they were a kleptomaniac and said that they liked your original hack's layout because they collecting everything. Don't listen to that. There is a good way to go about ring and object collection, but putting them in one giant place is not the way to go. Having a cluttered screen full of everything not only disorients a player who feels the need to collect everything, it is just not proportional. You have this one area in CNZ 1, iirc, where you just plopped in one area like 10 item boxes. Why? Sonic 1 did something similar, sure. But the layout makers didn't just leave their secrets in a place that is easily accessible, and didn't put that many item boxes in one place. When you do something like that, it should be a reward for the player, or an incentive to find said room. 

    - Layout challenges: I took note that you put a ton of falling platforms in EHZ, and added a surplus of bobbins into CNZ. This amount of external "platform" objects should not be used to replace actual good level design. If you amp up your level's difficulty with "challenges", then you're going about it horribly. Having platforms are fine, but if you make one section out of nowhere become a maze of platforms, or in the case of CNZ, bobbins, chances are, your flow has just disappeared and you've thrown fairness out the window and replaced it with unfair challenge, or dickishness.

    A quick note, don't put signs in tunnels. It is bad, period. There's a reason signs have never been put in tunnels in the walls, don't do it. 

    I'll move onto the music portion of this hack. As everybody has said, you really need to move on past Gens and it's SonMP3. There are plenty of ways to add in new music into your hack. Assuming you're using the S2 disasm, you could change out the sound driver and use the flamewing driver. Another option is to make the current driver read uncompressed tracks, and use the smps2asm version of said songs with the driver. This of course is the most time consuming, but it is better than having to do all of this convoluted and ridiculous setup of an external program. On a side note, you really don't need it. There is literally only one track, as far as I can recall, that was replaced for this hack, and that was the title screen. Why are you once more replacing perfectly good songs with horrible sounding midis or horribly remixed versions? If you are only changing one song, it'd be best to find a way to add that song than to force people to use a program to listen to it. Who knows, maybe you could learn something rather interesting that way.

    All in all, much better effort than last time.Though you are nowhere near good, you are going in the right direction. Hopefully next time you post, I won't have to make something as long as this because you've improved.
     
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