Sonic 2 Retro Remix

Discussion in 'Engineering & Reverse Engineering' started by Thorn, May 30, 2008.

  1. NeonSynth

    NeonSynth

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    Aww and I thought there was an update finally. D: I already PM'd Thorn over a year ago and he was like "in a few months". Seems he's forgotten about it. :/
     
  2. amphobius

    amphobius

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    Tip: Thorn was active in #retro a couple weeks ago and we talked about progress of our work so far.

    He's still slugging at it. You're not entitled to see anything he doesn't want you to.
     
  3. BlackHole

    BlackHole

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    Sprites for Cybernetic Outbreak
    Ah, so it's coming along, good. I look forward to seeing what he wants known to the public, be it a teaser or the full game completed months down the line.
     
  4. steveswede

    steveswede

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    This news makes me giddy inside.

    Also this is something I was working on a while back that I wanted to contribute but stopped due to S2RR going silent.

    [​IMG]

    I've reworked Sonic's face and shoes, made the monitor symbols pop out more and a few edits to the Sonic 2 type chaos emeralds.

    You're free to use them if you want, not bothered if you do just thought you might like these.
     
  5. AkumaYin

    AkumaYin

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    I'm glad that S2RR is still alive, too! It has to be one of my favorite Sonic hacks.

    Same as with Megamix, confirmation by the creators that the project is still going is really all I need.
     
  6. Thorn

    Thorn

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    I am way too lazy to actually polish things for a real update right now so have a video of me dicking around in really old levels from the current, extremely incomplete incomplete build and poorly narrating things because I was too lazy to make annotations.

    [youtube]http://youtu.be/F0o7KVX9gi4[/youtube]​
     
  7. BlackHole

    BlackHole

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    Sprites for Cybernetic Outbreak
    I like how it's coming along, good work Thorn. I look forward to the complete release.
     
  8. Dark Sonic

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    Vastly improved and looks a 1000 times less annoying (emerald monitors...). I'm looking forward to it. Pleasantly surprised that this isn't dead.
     
  9. Willie

    Willie

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    While I like that three characters are fully playable, I feel some of the unique aspects to this rom hack that upset a lot of Sonic fans helped make the rom hack stand out more as a unique experience. I loved the mandatory exploring, enjoyed the hub world (though some aspects of it caused confusion), liked the emerald collecting system the way it was in the last release, the lack of checkpoints, etc. All those were aspects to the game I liked, so the fact a lot of bitching Sonic fans probably influenced a lot of changes that reduced or got rid of those elements...is disappointing. It was fun trying to time my jumps and platforming in certain ways just to get specific emeralds as Sonic. Having Knuckles be the only one that collects emeralds in the traditional way really changes the gameplay a lot, especially if a lot of previously open paths are now blocked off for Sonic. Does that mean Sonic generally has less paths or will he be given a ton of additional paths to compensate? I'm also a little worried about pacing with the game. Having it where the first time you play the game, each character plays a specific act seems to break up the game a lot. For a more consistent experience, it seems like it would make more sense to just have it where you have the option to just choose a character for a first playthrough. Despite my complaints, I feel the game still looks very promising, but I feel disappointed by the update.

    Edit-

    It's worth mentioning the only time I ever hated on the mandatory emerald collecting was because I didn't realize where on the hub world I could go to the next zone.
     
  10. Sappharad

    Sappharad

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    I don't really want to ruffle any feathers with this comment, but I have the opposite opinion when it comes to the extra characters. One of my favorite things about Sonic 3K was the fact that you could play the same stages as different characters and explore different routes through them. The last time Sega really did this again was Sonic Adventure (06 doesn't count) so it's really refreshing to see that type of gameplay return in a hack. A few others have done it like MegaMix, but not to the extent that you've done it here with entire stage sections being character exclusive. That is great and I kind of wish they'd go back to that formula. I'd play it once as Sonic to see the stages, but then the other characters I'd slow down and explore more.

    Overall I'm optimistic about this and it looks good. (Although one of my favorite things about the game back around 09 or so was just how great the level design was when you could blast through levels as Sonic and not be forced to explore and do side quests to continue. The slower paced exploration seems more suited to tails and knuckles, so the addition of them is good for that. But I hate emerald hunting...)

    Thanks for posting the update and I hope you consider doing another long video in a year or two.
     
  11. Thorn

    Thorn

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    @W.A.C: The lack of checkpoints wasn't actually in the last release; the last release simply wasn't posted on Retro because it was made of tiny bugfixes and star posts and thus didn't merit a huge bump.

    With regards to Sonic getting more or less paths, I do have the ability to make Sonic-only paths by putting breakable barriers in a position where one can't spin dash or roll into them; I intend to allow Sonic to break barriers with the humming top (sideways air action) and can then simply put a platform out of Knuckles' reach to make a Sonic-only path. Tails-only and Knuckles-only paths are a possibility as well, of course. That said, Sonic's already getting more content to play than anybody else by way of Bonus Zones, which only appear for him. This is where you'll get your "fun trying to time jumps and platforming in certain ways", since you have to find the hidden Bonus Zone entrances and then complete the challenges within. I know that most of the Bonus Zones I showed were simplistic, but they're from the first two zones in the game, so they need to be. For those that liked it when I went full asshole with some hidden collectibles last release, that'll still happen at times. For example, I have some Bonus Zone entrances hidden inside other Bonus Zones, forcing you to look for them under a time limit and without getting hit.

    I don't see the character switching as something that breaks up the game too much. I'd agree with that if all three characters had radically different styles of play, but every character has the same core set of moves. Spin jumping, spin attacking, and spin dashing remain the core of the game, with spin dashing becoming more important than in previous releases now that the jump dash has been nerfed, and every character can pull off the crucial moves. Besides, if Before the Sequel was allowed to get away with switching characters for each zone, I think I can get away with having every character play an equal portion of each zone on the first playthrough.~

    I don't say this stuff because I want to shoot down everything you're saying. I actually sympathize with those that really liked what I had before. However, I feel that adding more content via the Bonus Zones and unlockables serves to encourage the behavior you liked about the past releases; the more you explore, the more content you can play. The changes largely serve to silence the people who wanted to do a minimalist, classic playthrough. Even this doesn't squash all of the complaints I've received, but I've resolved to just point any other complainers to Sonic Megamix, since that has a whole team of people making a polished game instead of just one guy who can't make any art and who is trying to remember how to code after years of barely doing so. I'm that weirdo who's making new level designs while the current popular hacks simply put a new feature into the original levels, so that already speaks volumes about my ability to connect with my target audience. :P

    @sonicblur: Well, if you don't want to emerald hunt, you won't have to. That's exactly what this change to the hack's structure is about. Just don't expect to find as much content as the people who actively look for content. :v:
     
  12. synchronizer

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    Is the latest version on the site wiki?
     
  13. Thorn

    Thorn

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    ^ I don't think it is, actually. It's on the hack website, but that's it. It never made it to Retro. I actually made it when a few people on The Sonic Center expressed interest in racing it on SpeedRunsLive and thus on Twitch, so I whipped up some quick fixes and didn't bother rekindling interest in it here. There were no SRAM structure changes, so it's compatible with SRAM data from the 2011 release. A note before any players ask: the latest version actually makes an odd change in that the emerald collected sound effect is different, as I didn't have RAM correctly allocated for extra-life-style returns to the original song and was thus causing crashes. I of course understand the issue now and can work around it for the next version.
     
  14. steveswede

    steveswede

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    I'm not keen on a lot of the changes, most likely due to me playing this hack since 2009 and seeing subtle changes from each revision I liked gone, it's lost it's charm on me. When I look at it now it just reminds me of Megamix. That's not to say Megamix looks crap it's just that I was hoping S2RR was going to continue being it's own beast, I was hoping we were just going to get more levels. The only new addition I liked are the elemental shields, everything else to me feels unnecessary, apart from Sonic CD screen scrolling which I can not stand and would love to see that feature burn a permanent death.

    I feel like I'm being really harsh over something I've yet to try out and I might end up being pleasantly surprised and find it fresh again. I don't know, I just have these feelings that I don't know the game anymore (damn I'm sounding like I've fallen out of love with a long time partner).
     
  15. Thorn

    Thorn

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    ^ Talk to me; what do you miss? From what I remember in the past, you didn't seem to like anything that made the hack more accessible to a more casual player. I remember the addition of the radar (or as you called it, the "gaydar") being upsetting, and now it seems to be making the collectibles optional instead of required. I'm willing to listen to concerns about what's actually missing, but I want to know that it's more than just talk about how things are options now instead of required, as that change doesn't actually remove the features that people liked. I truly want to know what you want to see return, as I'm open to suggestion.
     
  16. steveswede

    steveswede

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    Well the things I liked that are gone are.

    Music for emerald list
    Music for act clear
    Emerald list font
    Music instruments changes from 2009 to 2010/2011 (CV and CP mainly)
    Emerald monitor change to the more recent one that made them harder to spot when blazing through levels (that's why I put that sprite sheet up in hope you find it more appealing and would change it, I even did smaller versions so they could be laid out under the hud much like in Sonic Advance 2)
    wall jump command changed
    CV act 1 changed dramatically

    Things I felt that didn't fit with the game well.

    Radar (it's the bleep that I find annoying, visually it doesn't distract me)
    CP act 3 instant death fluid (breaks the flow of the game, lots of stopping and starting)


    Collectibles being optional is actually great, I don't have a problem with that change, it's irrelevant to me as I like emerald hunting in the game. I said years ago that the zones should be accessible by just completing the levels for those that just want to do a linear run so emeralds being optional is fine by me.

    Other things in the WIP is that I'm not a fan of more characters. I've always felt that S2RR was just a Sonic game set around his abilities alone. This isn't a knock at your decision to introduce them but I've always felt that if Tails and Knuckles were going to go the Retro Remix route then they would have new vastly different abilities with levels that fit around them (like say Tails after jumping on a spring you hold down and press jump to turn his tail into a drill to break through tough walls, or can throw bombs). What I'm basically saying is they have their own games around their unique abilities where everything is accessible to them.

    I really feel that I'm just complaining about the changes because of my love for the 2009 hack (Frosty Peak, Beta Casino Night and those extra acts were all fantastic additions in later ones BTW). I think you should just ignore these points and just stick with what you want to do. I'm very great full to have had the pleasure of playing one of the best hack, if not thee best hack I've ever played for me personally.
     
  17. Thorn

    Thorn

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    ^ Let's see what I can tackle from that list.

    The music for the mission list will still be used in menus and in the opening splash screen. That music was originally not from anything Sonic-related and was changed to the Sonic 2 options menu music in 2011. The music that I'm currently using (not heard in the video) is "Take Off" from Knuckles' Chaotix, albeit with a simpler drum beat and the bass removed due to less sound channels.

    The act clear music is character dependent. Tails still has the old Act Clear theme.

    I can't think of much that changed in terms of instrumentation from 2009 to 2010/2011 except for the Chaotix drums being replaced with the Sonic 3 & Knuckles drums, as the Chaotix drums were a bit "loose" for the songs being used. If I changed any other instruments, it's because the old ones either didn't fit or clashed with the rest of the music in the hack.

    Emerald monitors won't exist in the newest release. Sonic will already have to find several collectibles without a radar and will have to navigate a Bonus Zone to actually claim the collectible after finding it.

    With respect to the wall jump, I think you're the only person who prefers the old method. I remember The Sonic Stadium's SAGE 2010 review giving my hack great praise and then dropping all of it for a bit to tell me how horrible the wall kick controls were back then. :P

    I never did find out why Cascade Valley 1 broke so long ago, but given that it started working again as soon as I shortened it back to a length just under $4000 in x, I have to assume that was part of the problem. Luckily, now that I need to have something unlockable to make the collectible-gathering gameplay worthwhile, I have a reason to use the extra space beyond the hubs in their act slot. You'll have that act and all of the Bonus Zones in Cascade Valley for extra Cascade Valley action. If your concern is more about level flow than about length, I can't say I've felt a significant difference in playtesting besides the need to manually maneuver more instead of riding boosters. If speed's a concern, I can tell you that the fastest paths are still intact, as they're ones that required doing more than holding right (omg good level design).

    Admittedly, I can't tell you much about the radar other than to get the collectibles so that it disappears. There needs to be an audio indicator for it because it's simply too small to get the player's attention otherwise. Luckily, you'll only see it 1/3 as often as you did in the last release because it's only for Knuckles now.

    I'd agree with you on the Chemical Plant death liquid if this were the 2011 release. A distant spawn point in the overworld and a lack of star posts made that level a pain in the butt, and a poor layout decision at the top of the rising liquid made players inadvertently make a blind jump to their deaths. These problems have been mitigated now, though. The 2012 bugfix release added star posts just before the rising liquid and just afterwards, and it moved the spawn point closer to the act entrance. Beyond that, the current WIP sees Tails performing in that level first, making the ascent much easier.

    I think your drill idea is more suited for Knuckles, given his affinity for digging. That said, Megamix is already doing that. :P I'm not averse to giving the characters unique abilities, but I have no art skills to make them. I also need to make sure that these new abilities don't let characters defy the route restrictions I place on them. As an admin at The Sonic Center, I've watched Sonic 3 & Knuckles' character restrictions get circumvented at every opportunity, and I don't want that to happen in my hack.

    As I told W.A.C., I respect that some people prefer the revisions of the game from back when it was still and up-and-coming project. However, I don't think the game is ever going to compare to Megamix, because as I said before, I'm one person and not a team. I think any fear of this "becoming" that game is ill-founded. This game is always going to be one that plays around with non-Sonic concepts in a Sonic setting with mediocre music and a small offering of art from back when I had a partner. This game won't stray that far from its quaint beginnings because it can't. Heck, it actually started when Tweaker told me and DNXDelta to make something that could serve as a base if Sonic 2 Megamix ever became a project again—obviously, Sonic 1 Megamix went a bit farther than he anticipated, so this hack is firmly not-Megamix from now on. :P
     
  18. AkumaYin

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    Don't you think that you could find a new spriter to help you out with the art side of this hack? I mean, there are still plenty of people here with decent-to-excellent pixel art skills, so I'd try asking around.
     
  19. Thorn

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    ^ It goes beyond that. Sprites are useful, but I'd need zone art too. I have only two levels with new art; everything else is pulled from Sonic 2 Beta or from other levels. There's a lot of half-completed art left from DNXDelta, such as new art for Aquatic Ruin and a version of Casino Night that I haven't put in the game yet, that could be touched up as well. Music help would be great too, as I know my tunes and instrument choices are half-baked compared to what people such as ValleyBell, Tweaker, DalekSam, MarkeyJester, and many others make. I'd trust myself to get help if I was actually dedicated to my own hack, as lately I've been more interested in playing games than designing them.
     
  20. BlackHole

    BlackHole

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    Why not make a little contest where some fans of the game can make a level art sheet? Only one, to prevent the thread being bombarded by hundreds of art sheets from one person. Give a little detail on what you want for the level art, some guidelines to keep some uniform appearance, and find someone to work on the sprites on their bill?