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Sonic Hacking Contest 2024

Discussion in 'Engineering & Reverse Engineering' started by giovanni.gen, Apr 6, 2024.

  1. giovanni.gen


    It's still Joe-vanni, not Geo-vanni. Member
    Sonic Hacking Contest

    We’re back!
    This year, too, the Sonic Hacking Contest returns to put a shine on your favorite and upcoming ROM Hacks and Mods!

    The SHC has undergone many changes in the past few months between the last contest and this announcement, even down to the inner management! To stay up to date with the changes, watch our video presentation detailing all of the changes for SHC2024, or keep reading!

    Deadlines for the Sonic Hacking Contest 2024

    SUBMISSIONS DEADLINE: End of Sunday 8th September
    CONTEST PERIOD: From Saturday 28th September to Sunday 6th October

    Where did all the Deadlines go!?

    You may have noticed a number of notable differences in the schedule format since last year, such as the notable absence of the Updates Week.

    This is where you’ll find the first few changes! There’s been a lot of confusion in regards to the Updates Week’s purpose. It appears to have been a period reserved to patching any errors and polishing the entries. However, that was not a widely enforced (or disclosed) rule, and many have been operating under the assumption that the Updates Week would welcome all sorts of updates, including major content updates.

    To save everyone the confusion, we’re getting rid of the Updates Week. We have kept that into account when determining the Submissions Deadline, to give entrants one additional week of further development. However, this means that, starting this year, entries found on the website at the Submissions Deadline will be considered final, and, outside of the usual exceptions granted for game breaking bug fixes, we will not be accepting updates past the Submissions Deadline. This comes with the added condition that, should an entrant release an unauthorized update for a Judged Entry in the period between the end of the Submissions Deadline, and the end of Community Voting, Judges reserve the right to immediately disqualify the Entry. We will update the Rules in the website accordingly to reflect that once we have the chance to do so!

    In short, starting this year, the deadline you see above applies to all submissions: Judged submissions; Unjudged submissions; and Trailer clip submissions. We’ll open up submissions later around August through a future announcement, so stay tuned!

    What about the Expo?

    Keen eyes will have noticed that, until now, the Expo went entirely unmentioned. That’s because we’re getting rid of that, too.

    Entries to the main event can still opt in and out of judgment. However, both Entry kinds will appear on the same website page! Don’t worry, we’ll make sure you can still tell them apart when browsing the website for entries, you’re just going to be more likely to notice them!

    We recognize that the Expo has been home for some… less than favorable entries in the past, and that said entries may have turned some of you off from checking out some of the higher quality ones, so we’re going to address that by increasing the Quality Standards for Unjudged Entries to match those of the Judged ones.

    Speaking of Quality Control, we are adding additional conditions for repeat submitters: starting this year, repeat submissions will undergo Quality Control against their previous SHC submissions, to ensure that they remain fresh. Entries that fail to innovate will be discarded.

    Contest Week… and more!

    Another thing you may have noticed is the fact that the usual Contest “Week” lasts a bit more than a week this year.

    We have received plenty of demand from you people asking us to extend the Contest Period. And we’re going to deliver! We’re going to experiment with extended Contest Periods, starting this year with 9 days of it! Should this be well received, we may consider going even longer for future years!

    Changes to Judgment of Entries

    In previous years, was an entry submitted for one of the three macro categories, a Judge of that category would be required to judge it regardless of base game. However, some judges may have lesser knowledge or familiarity with the game, therefore leading to lower quality judgment.

    We’re going to address it by introducing Free-Flow Judgment, a system allowing Judges to opt in and out of Judgment for select games! This will allow Judges to stick with games they are most comfortable with, ensuring that your entry will be looked at by experts at their craft, or by folks that truly know what they’re talking of. Naturally, to prevent understaffing, Select Judges of a given category may be assigned to judge a more exotic game, should a submission for it pop up. We’ll announce who judges what later this year.

    Judges will remain split in the three macro categories, maintaining a rough expectation.

    List of Judges

    Once it is included in the SHC Website, we will redirect you there. For now, here it is, in written form:

    ROM Hack

    Head Judges: Giovanni, pixelcat
    Standard Judges: jubbalub, KGL, Ravenfreak, saan1ty, SSF1991, SunkythePootis

    Modern 2D

    Head Judges: Axanery, HazelSpooder
    Standard Judges: Cosmic Eternity, Dynamic Lemons, JacksNormal, Leonx254, MegAmi, MiaCDi, SSF1991, KGL

    Head Judges: ItsEasyActually, ĐeäTh

    Standard Judges: Hyper, Sajid, Sewer56, Skyth, Speeps, SSF1991

    Returning Trophies
    All trophies from last year are here to stay, but we have brought back a selection of trophies from the olden days!

    Green Hill: Entry that plays the most like an existing Sonic game
    Crystal Meth Chao Garden: Entry with the most potential replayability
    Eosian Sphere: Entry with the best new level object or gimmick

    Signing off
    Thanks for your attention! Once again, we're working on getting this very same information on the actual website: this will be done as soon as possible!

    Make sure to check the home page of our website, as important news will be delivered there! You’re free to contact us through our email at shc<.>zone<.>site@gmail<.>com (without the “<>”s), or send a DM for inquiries.

    With all that said and done, get ready… set… PROCRASTINATE!

    Last edited: Apr 29, 2024
  2. MarkeyJester


    Original, No substitute Resident Jester
    I like this... not a bad idea at all.

    Though what about subjective judging by nature? i.e. artwork or music

    A person may have no knowledge of the technical difficulties of a PC entry, but they surely are still able to judge the artistic side compared to other PC entries of the same nature. What's the stance on that?
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  3. giovanni.gen


    It's still Joe-vanni, not Geo-vanni. Member
    Sonic Hacking Contest
    Very good question right there!

    My own personal stance? I think it's really cool! While I do believe that a technical understanding of the game you're evaluating can help better appreciate the arts that go on in the entry, one doesn't need this alone.

    Many fields can be evaluated: artistic, musical, game design related... Anything worth evaluating can be put into question, and technical understanding is only one of the many fields that can be judged: individuals will excel at variable rates at each task.

    This is something worthy of consideration in our internal assessments: thank you for your feedback!
  4. Overlord


    Now playable in Smash Bros Ultimate Moderator
    Long-term happiness
    Unpinned last year's thread, pinned this one.
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