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Sonic - Into The Void

Discussion in 'Engineering & Reverse Engineering' started by Blueblur93, Mar 21, 2014.

  1. GerbilSoft


    RickRotate'd. Administrator
    Counterpoint: Attitudes like this is exactly why we end up with HACK DETECTION and Wii homebrew filled with DRM. "I made super secret code and it's so special that everyone else is FORBIDDEN from having it, even though it's based on an illegally reverse-engineered ROM that other people disassembled for me!"
  2. Super Egg

    Super Egg

    Master of MS Paint. Member
    Tomball, TEXAS
    Sonic 2 beta 3 hoax


    This hack.

    This hack. There is a smile on my face, and it ain't going away. I definitely know it's not because this hack is a godsend straight from the river of the Land of Tweakallah. No, this hack is's just a prime slice from newguy attempt heaven.

    Ok buddy, you're new to the pasture. Congrats. You're definitely not the worst beginner I've seen, but definitely this hack is bad. I'm sorry for being blunt, but it is...... At the same time however, it has potential.

    Let's list the Pros and the Cons.

    - The Ring art you have there is actually not half bad. Given a bit of tweaking, it'll look real nice.
    - You were able to port the S3K, or flamewing, sound driver into this. Not necessarily difficult, but for a beginner, nice job.
    - You started basic ASM hacking. The GHZ boss a prime example.
    - The GHZ boss. It's not the greatest thing ever, but given time, I'm certain you could make that into something cool. Though, I'd suggest you change it up. The concept, though cool, has been done a few times.
    - SYZ's bg is interesting, sort of. Given enough work, it'd be kickass.

    - OH GOD THE PALETTE. MY EYES!!!!! MY EYES!!! Please don't make me explain this.
    - Homing attack. More on that later.
    - Layouts. Object, Ring, Level. ACK
    - The rest of your other art edits. Shield art being a prime example.
    - The afterimage. Not a big deal, but I just don't like it.
    - Another small nitpick. You go off and extend the Sound Test, but don't add the feature to be able to jump $16 songs up? Come now man, don't be lazy =P
    - And this hack didn't cook me a god damned steak. Where is my god damned steak?

    Ok then, let's get to the meat of this post, Homing attacks and layouts.

    First off, Gerbilsoft.

    I'm rather certain that isn't the issue. The issue is that the homing attack is lame and overused. If I had a bell curve, this is how it'll look explaining the history of the homing attack


    Oh look at that. I have one. :specialed:

    Point One: Homing Attack

    Jokes aside, the homing attack went outta style when it did because it was overused. The move became almost like the spindash in the number of hacks it was introduced. The difference however is that the spindash is practical, while the homing attack, or properly the "jump dash", is just a novelty. The concept of the move was the ease of targeting foes on a 3D plane. The need of it in 2D was if anything ridiculous. As Sonic, or any of his woodland creature friends, they can all maneuver properly and take down enemies by jumping on them. Hell, if you wanted a chain, you could create one, all you had to do is being able to rebound off of the next enemy at the right time.

    Given that, this hack has no need for the homing/Dash Attack. The move only complicates movement and hinders actual progress. I believe that is the issue Clownacy was going on about. The homing attack is lame, overused, un-needed, and nothing more than a novelty. IF instead the level layouts were actual comprehensible half the time, the need for it to save your ass because of unfair spike/enemy/wall/whatever placement. On that, let's move on to the next point.

    Point Two: Level Layouts

    You know, I swear I have to explain how level flow and design work every time I have to discuss a hack with someone. Fuck that noise, Im'ma just gonna copy and paste this from a previous post from SSRG.

    Question for ya. Why are you so in a hurry to release this hack and for people to play this? I don't mean to be blunt, but this hack is horrible. Many of the reasons are already stated, so repeating them would be just beating a dead horse. The main issue is that your hack is untested, unpolished, and most of, barely enjoyable.

    Given that, let's discuss a few things, namely the keys of making a good hack. Let me list them down first, and then explain them.

    1. Playability <-----------
    |--------- These two categories are intertwined. I can't decide which is more important, so I've listed them as both number one in importance.
    1. Logical Design <------------
    2. Presentation
    3. Replayability

    1. Playability - The most important thing about anything, hack or not, is playability. What is playability? Playability is the ability to play, whatever is the subject in question, in this case: your hack, in a way that is enjoyable. Bottom line, your hack has to be playable. That is literally the only way I can explain it. If I can't figure out how to get to point A to point B, that is an issue, whether it is because of bad level design, or poor controls. In your case, poor controls aren't an issue, as this is a Sonic 1 hack, thus you don't have to worry about it, so it is obviously the latter, which leads to the next point.

    1(a). Logical Design - In my personal opinion, this is the most important point, but some may argue, whatever. In order to understand logical design, there is two things you must learn,
    logical level design, flow. There are differences between the two.

    A. Logical Level Design- A fairly easy concept to understand. In any platform game, the objective is to go from Point A to Point B. Given that, your levels should reflect that. There should be paths that lead to the end. Along with it, the paths shouldn't become entirely impossible to backtrack, as explorations is key to finding goodies. If it becomes difficult for the player to go back, the incentive to explore is gone. There should always be more than one path to go between points. A level should never have only one path to the end, as it is not only short sighted, but bland. Mario levels technically have only way to get to the end, bearing in mind Shortcuts via tubes don't count. Though it works in Mario, as finding the pipe that possibly houses your alternate way to the end is a challenge on it's own, it doesn't work in Sonic. Sonic doesn't warp to different parts of the level unless it is part of some kind of gimmick, and usually only because it leads to another path TO the end, not just a path this is right outside the goal. Given that, Sonic games have multiple paths, as it encourages exploration, and teaches the player different ways to the end, and possibly better ways to perfect their game.

    Another key point would be object/Ring placement. Springs should be used to lead to either an alternate path, or as a means to find goodies. Springs can be used to impede a player's progress, but shouldn't be used all the time in such a dishonest manner, as it can desensitize a player into not using them and ignoring them unless it is bluntly obvious. Another thing, springs need to be associated with something in the foreground. Having a random spring floating around in the air isn't good, as it shows you have no idea how to control your level. Instead of finding creative, or using cranial power, you left springs in the air. Why? If you put it in a tree, that'd be nice, as the player would have to figure out which tree. Moving and or stationary platforms are placed in decent spots. Nothing to go home and rave about, but it's not bad considering the level layout.

    B. Flow - My favorite topic. As explained, the point of Logical design is to go from Point A to Point B. Now, in lots of new hacks, the creator understands that concept, but flow is a completely different animal. Remember that example I used about Mario? Yep, that is a horrible example of flow. Mario games flow like molasses. What does that mean? That means the level design is pretty piss easy, but flow, no. You the player have to search every pipe to find an alternate exit, or another place to gather more goodies such as coins, 1ups, ect. In the case of Sonic, multiple paths are around, so the need for a separate room is moot. Given that, the way flow works is simple. If the player has to actually stop and think about how to finish the level, then it isn't flowing. If the player has to stop because the level just makes you stop, it isn't good flow. A random wall where it wasn't indicated there would be one, a level where you have a path that leads to imminent death, ect; that's bad flow.

    2. Presentation - Along with having comprehensive controls, and good design logic, then you should be able to come up with something with presentation. Presentation is as it sounds, how you've presented your hack. Is the hack polished? Is the aesthetics good? Does it look appealing at first glance, ect. That's why having good art and palettes are imperative, otherwise people will just ignore a potential gem as a headache.

    3. Replayability - This is important, but not as much as the others. Your hack should make people want to come back to it. If your hack doesn't hold the appeal of the audience, your hack ain't a Mona Lisa. This should be your indicator of how well you made your hack. If people come back to it. Because downloading it means nothing. If people don't play past the first act, it doesn't matter. I told somebody their hack "was a piece of shit and I can't play past the first act because it was a mess." Author's response? "Just play past the first Act, it gets better after." No. If you can't capture the attention of the audience within the first 30 seconds, you've lost. Doesn't matter if it give you a $1.M later on, because people want to see something immediately.

    All in All, good shot for a beginner. Hopefully this helps you in your hack production. As a side note, don't release something this early. Literally nothing good will be said about your hack at this point in time. All you're doing is hurting yourself and putting a time table onto something that needs patience and time, not production dates.

    Ok then, you can skip all that if you'd like. I'd suggest you read it, as I explain level design thoroughly, but I won't blame you if you don't. It's quite lengthy.

    GHZ1 - It's ok, but what in the sam hill is up with your platform "challenge" halfway through? It ain't challenging, it's dickish. Even though you provide an alternative path, it shouldn't be automatically mandatory.

    Also, Lemme say this, in GHZ2, fuck that shit. Seriously man, what the actual hell? You make it mandatory to jump off at the end of the tunnel, otherwise you fall to the bottom path and have to die? What kind of level design is that? Seriously dude. It's nice you put a life down there, as to not be a complete dick, but that's a dick move either way, not to mention a waste of perfectly good layout space.

    Big no no: spike pits and random spikes. Come on man. In what Sonic game did they have a shit ton of bottomless pits that didn't make sense, or spike pits that shouldn't be? Well besides MCZ, none that are memorable. You can't use shit like that as "challenge," that isn't challenge. Challenge is where you have to you use brainpower to get outta an area and the way out isn't quite obvious, but it can be solved. Being a dick is when you punish the player for not timing concisely to your demands, which is what you do with the homing attack. (see above)

    Also, cut back on the springs? Remember how people get annoyed with being constantly bombarded by speed boosters? Well springs do the same thing. This isn't Kaiser Mario. And an autoplaying level is fun and all, but it gets tiresome quite quickly.

    All in all, good shot, you just need to REALLY test out levels before you release them to the public. Like, play through every level 4 or 5 times and see if there is anything wrong. You'd be surprised how many times people revise already good layouts because they feel it could be done better.

    Point Three: Your Attitude

    You can sit here all day and have like one or two people call somebody a dick because he said something not "nice" to you. Cut that shit out right now. People aren't going to be nice and hold back because you just jumped onto the scene. When you release a product, you will have to taste the full force of criticism that is to come. Once your hack is out on display, people can say whatever about it, and you can't call them out on it, or disagree with their opinion, because, it's their opinion, and also because you let it out.

    Next off, Clownacy did nothing "dickish", or "cruel", or whatever else you and the idiots on here are moaning about. It's called, say it with me CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM. So please, quit your bitching, all of you.

    Knucklez, what? Is criticizing not the point of posting? You can't hold people's hands. If something is bad, don't beat around the bush, tell it like it is. If it sucks, say it straight. "It sucks." After that though, you explain why and how it could be made better. Where is the issue with that? Why is it you people are so afraid to not be a bunch of pussies and say what it is? He is a beginner, so what? It's best to hurt his feelings now and set him straight, than to let him continuing to make mistakes and when it all comes to it at the end, his stuff is mediocre and nobody will like it. I swear, it's like you people live in this fantasy world where everything has to be perfect.

    Kid, you have potential, but don't sit here and take things personally. Use what people say as motivation to get better, not a reason as to why you didn't succeed.


  3. MarkeyJester


    Original, No substitute Resident Jester
    I... Kind of hit a little snag here:


    The score kept increasing, giving me more lives in the process, and now it's stuck with my lives incrementing extremely fast in a loop.

    Love the invincible stars design though, probably the best I've seen.
  4. Clownacy


    Tech Member
    Whoa, I'd been using debug mode since Midnight Aurora act 2, so I never noticed that.

    SuperEgg, I fucking love you.

    After you lot's reaction, I thought I had committed some ungoldy sin, that I'd lost touch with what was the norm: My direction was influenced by what I'd seen when I first found the SSRG, which, between that and here, is the metropolis of noob hacks.

    Sorry SuperEgg, but that ain't Flamewing's driver, it's the S3 driver from that SCHG guide. There're a lot of giveaways: Dead Sega sound, Z80 not being supported by ASM68K, and I doubt someone so new knows how to convert to AS or pre-assemble the code, some projectile-firing badniks make that noise that they do in S3, but they're mistimed due to an error in the guide, you could probably hear the S3-specific DACs in some of the songs.
  5. Adamis


    Gimme waffles! Oldbie
    Lammy and "Fafnir"
    I've tried the first Zone. There were some bugs. On Act 1, I got stuck in the first breakable wall and the game just pushed me to the end !
    On Act 2, I didn't understand what was going on, I went on a loop a few times before finding the end of the Act purely by chance. And why is there a bottomless pit right next to a place full of bonuses ?
    On Act 3, I died when I reached the top of the level... then I killed the boss and accidently touched the giant ring before opening the capsule, so I was stuck and I turned the game off.
  6. Super Egg

    Super Egg

    Master of MS Paint. Member
    Tomball, TEXAS
    Sonic 2 beta 3 hoax
    Who doesn't? Especially after that helpful graph I made? That should've put everything into perspective =P

    If SSRG is the Metropolis of newb hacks, I must be the Slicers. Cause I'll I do is slice bitches down to size on there =P

    Yeah, after playing it again, not being super tired from a workout, I realized this as such. Kinda a let down tbh, but oh well. What can you do?
  7. Clownacy, I think I just weren't used to that kind of criticism, so I apologize my replies. Like you said, I just needed that kick up the arse.
    Now that I've properly read both Super Egg's and your view of my hack, I think I agree with you now. NOT that it's a terrible hack though... [​IMG]
    And also from that helpful graph about homing attack, I think I'll remove that ability, and probably go back to the basics. Spin-dash, run and jump.

    But by the way, to be truthful, I did originally get the S3K sound driver code from SCHG, because for some reason the Sonic Retro's S3K Driver weren't working ...
    Then I tried the Sonic Retro's version again, and it worked, but maybe I missed out something and some SCHG's code is in there somewhere, so I'll have another look at it.

    Now there is one thing I ask from either of you two, or both of you (because then I can have two views), can you please look at all acts for the level layout, and tell me which layouts are good and bad. Now that doesn't include, walk-able lava, and other stuff like that. It's solely just the level layout I want to know, and for that (I know it isn't much) but I'll add you to the credits for testers, because I can clearly see that level layout is a big issue. I already know about the annoying loop and secret room death trap at the beginning of Midnight Aurora act 2. So yeah, could you test the rest of the levels, even if (it will most likely be used) the level select and debug mode.

    As said before, the items will be remastered/ tweaked, as you can probably tell I'm not entirely an artist, but I've tried to draw in what I had in mind.

    Also MarkeyJester, I know how that has happened, because I have changed the speed of the Time Bonus countdown, I should just put the speed as it was originally.
  8. Clownacy


    Tech Member
    I still say I apologise for that second post. That was a mess, too many mixed signals. As before, I can understand that you don't see your hack as negatively as I do, you can probably see the good in there where I can't.

    I see a learning opportunity... Instead of removing the Homing Attack, why not give the player an option? Now, I'm not talking about anything that'd fly way over your head, like porting the S2 Options menu and modifying it to have a 'Homing Attack' setting, I'm talking about mapping the HA to only one of the A/B/C buttons, leaving the others free for standard stuff. I'm not entirely against the HA, I just don't like losing the Badnik-Bounce to it. By having the two mapped to different buttons, you have a simple, yet effective, solution for both pro- and anti-HA players. You use Selbi's code, right? I helped someone do a similar thing in the past. Go to the label Sonic_JumpDash and near it you should find a line like this:

    Code (ASM):
    1. ($FFFFF603).w,d0
    In the line beneath it is a number, $50 (I think), change it to $20. That $FFFFF603 is a button input log of some sort, that $50 number is an ID of a button press in said log, a combination of A, B, and C's. $20 is just C's. Doing this causes the HA/Jump Dash to be triggered only by C.

    As I said to SuperEgg, there're a whole bunch of ways the S3K driver can die on you. Namely, the sound driver is in a different language to the rest of the game. When you build the game, the 'language' becomes machine code. Because the driver is in an alien language, it can't be made into machine code by the Assembler. The S2 and S3K disassemblies have a different Assembler, allowing both languages to be built. The SCHG version of the driver has already been turned into machine code, and even then, I don't fully trust that as a solution, as, personally, I think that's why the Sega Sound crapped out, possibly because of some aligning issue. The S1's sound driver is mostly the same language as the game, but there's one small part that is also a different language, and, like before, you can find it in it's machine code form as z80_1.bin and z80_2.bin in the sound folder.

    Sorry, I'm no good with detecting 'good' level layout, I'm better at finding 'bad'. Let's put it this way, after playing them enough times, I now love Marble Zone and Labyrinth Zone's layouts. Because of it, I like Ember Gardens act 2 as a Marble Zone-ish level. I find myself just comparing levels to their Sonic 1 counterpart, like that drop in Midnight Aurora act 2 where I'd expect to see goodies instead of death, I expected so because, for example, in GHZ act 3, you can leap over a large bed of spikes, fall into the large pit/waterfall behind it, only to find five ring monitors and an extra life, and a spring to send you back on your way. If I did that in SLZ, that pit would be bottomless.

    That said, I played a section of Hydroruin act 1 a while back, and I have to say, I like that part with the switch and the door next to it that doesn't remain open. I found it to be a very good test of my timing and familiarity with underwater physics. I wouldn't mind Midnight Aurora act 2's loop if you hadn't made the 'hill' you're supposed to reach in order to progress so far away that you wouldn't know it was there unless you already know it's there and are actively trying to reach it. That part inside the loop with the selectively-falling-platforms-over-spikes could be made not-completetly-unfair to make the loop seem less daunting. But still, I would've liked an alternate route... Outside of S3K, I rarely find myself thinking about where to go in a level, especially your average GHZ-type level.

    You say that it's the speed of the Time Bonus countdown that caused Markey's problem? It looks like he just got a really big time bonus, look at the first digit. It's a number so large, the game doesn't have an appropriate graphic for it. In my Sonic 2 hack on the level results screen, if your total score goes from 99999 to 100000, the first "9" doesn't become a "10", it becomes ":".
  9. Well about the time bonus, it's quite weird because the highest value I've set for it, is 75,000 points, but I have noticed as a bug when I've tried to speed up the countdown, but for the latest release I have decreased the speed of the Time Bonus Count, but that bug occurs now about 1/15 chance rather almost all the time. Maybe it could be to do with changing the value of the time bonuses possibly, or changing the duration between "SONIC GOT THROUGH" Title card and begin the Bonus countdown?

    Also for the MAz act 2 level loop do you think possibly adding a bridge of rings is a good indication of how far to jump?

    And also, to make my hack visually unique, without going overboard, I'm trying to edit GHz's level art on SONED2 but for all of the micro tiles, they just appear as a hollow square with a X in the middle attaching to the 4 corners of the square, so it's impossible to alter it. I don't suppose you know a way around it as well? Kind of what you see in this image where it's replacing the flowers, except for me it's covering everything, including platforms, etc. (By the way this isn't my image or the hack shown on it, it's just to show an example for anyone who's reading this.)
  10. Clownacy


    Tech Member
    I managed to recreate your SonED2 bug in SonLVL. I can't offer much advice on the tool since I don't use it, instead using SonLVL, which has a similar purpose. You see, GHZ's art is in two pieces. In the Hivebrain disasm, these art files are in the 'artnem' folder bearing the names '8x8ghz1.bin' and '8x8ghz2.bin'. GHZ is the only zone that does this. It looks like SonED2 is only loading 8x8ghz1.bin.

    Find your .sep file for all GHZ levels and look for lines like this:

    Code (Text):
    1. 8x8 Compression:       3
    2. Num 8x8 Pages:         1
    3. 8x8 Tiles Page 0:      ..\artnem\8x8ghz1.bin
    You want to add to them like this:
    Code (Text):
    1. 8x8 Compression:       3
    2. Num 8x8 Pages:         2
    3. 8x8 Tiles Page 0:      ..\artnem\8x8ghz1.bin
    4. 8x8 Tiles Page 1:      ..\artnem\8x8ghz2.bin
    I can't seem to find any SonED2 .sep files for Hivebrain's disasm, if you can point me to any, I can provide some more accurate instructions. You just need to increase the 'Pages' counter to 2, and add a pointer to the second art file. This won't fix the flowers, but then again, nothing really could: They're not a part of the level art.

    I can't comment on the Time Bonus bug, I've never taken a good look at the countdown code before.

    Having a trail of rings guiding you across the gap sounds like it'd work. Given that you're hopping over rocks and spikes at that point, players should be going slow enough to notice them and get the hint.

    EDIT: Reading it again, is ALL art replaced by those squares? If that's the case, it sounds like the above code isn't even pointing to the art anymore. You just gotta correct the above lines to point to where the art really is. If you haven't rearranged your files from the standard Hivebrain layout, they should be just as the above code shows.
  11. The .sep files are separate and labelled to each act, so 3 files per zone.
    I've opened one file and here what it looks like:

    Type: 1

    Zone ID: 0
    Act ID: 0

    Object Def: objdef\s1obj

    8x8 Tiles: ..\artnem\8x8ghz.bin

    16x16 Tiles: ..\map16\ghz.bin

    256x256 Tiles: ..\map256\ghz.bin

    FG Layout: ..\levels\ghz1.bin
    BG Layout: ..\levels\ghzbg.bin

    Objects: ..\objpos\ghz1.bin


    Number of files: 2

    Palette 1-

    Start index: 0
    Number of entries: 16
    File: ..\pallet\sonic.bin

    Palette 2-

    Start index: 16
    Number of entries: 48
    File: ..\pallet\ghz.bin

    Angle Array: ..\collide\anglemap.bin
    Collision Array: ..\collide\carray_n.bin
    Rotated Collision Array: ..\collide\carray_r.bin

    Collision Index 1: ..\collide\ghz.bin


    I've tried doing what you said, by adding ghz1.bin and ghz2.bin for the 8x8 tiles, and it does sort out the graphics, but gets completely messed up.

    Also this is where I got the files from:


    OK I've found a temporary solution where it display's the main GHZ art. I've changed 8x8ghz.bin to 8x8ghz1.bin. It still shows some of those square is crosses in but that's more to do with bridges and waterfalls, etc.
  12. Clownacy


    Tech Member
    I got my settings from the GitHub disasm:

    Code (Text):
    1. Type: Level
    3. Zone ID:    0
    4. Act ID:     0
    6. Object Def:     objdef\s1obj
    7. Object Palette: objdef\s1obj1.pcx
    9. 8x8 Compression:       3
    10. Num 8x8 Pages:         2
    11. 8x8 Tiles Page 0:      ..\artnem\8x8 - GHZ1.bin
    12. 8x8 Tiles Page 1:      ..\artnem\8x8 - GHZ2.bin
    14. 16x16 Compression:     2
    15. Num 16x16 Pages:       1
    16. Page0 8x8 Page:        0
    17. 16x16 Tiles Page 0:    ..\map16\GHZ.bin
    19. Metatile Size:         256
    20. Metatile Compression:  1
    21. Num Metatile Pages:    1
    22. Page0 16x16 Page:      0
    23. Metatile Tiles Page 0: ..\map256\GHZ.bin
    25. Layout Format:         0
    26. Layout Compression:    0
    27. FG Level Layout:       ..\levels\ghz1.bin
    28. BG 128x128 Page:       0
    29. BG Level Layout:       ..\levels\ghzbg.bin
    31. Objects Format:        1
    32. Objects:               ..\objpos\ghz1.bin
    33. Rings Format:          0
    34. Misc Format:           0
    35. Num Start Positions:   1
    36. Start Position 0:      ..\startpos\ghz1.bin
    38. Palettes-
    40.  Number of files: 2
    42.   Palette 0-
    44.    Start index:        0
    45.    Number of entries: 16
    46.    File:              ..\palette\Sonic.bin
    48.   Palette 1-
    50.    Start index:       16
    51.    Number of entries: 48
    52.    File:              ..\palette\Green Hill Zone.bin
    54. Collision Map Format:    0
    55. Collision Array:         ..\collide\Collision Array (Normal).bin
    56. Rotated Collision Array: ..\collide\Collision Array (Rotated).bin
    57. Angle Array:             ..\collide\Angle Map.bin
    59. Collision Index Format:      0
    60. Collision Index Compression: 0
    61. Collision Index:             ..\collide\GHZ.bin
    63. Game Name: Sonic 1
    65. -EOF-

    If you're using the latest version of SonED2, you should be able to just hybridise them in the way I said above. How is it "messed up" for you?

    If my understanding is correct, just replace

    Code (Text):
    1. 8x8 Tiles: ..\artnem\8x8ghz.bin

    Code (Text):
    1. 8x8 Compression:       3
    2. Num 8x8 Pages:         2
    3. 8x8 Tiles Page 0:      ..\artnem\8x8ghz1.bin
    4. 8x8 Tiles Page 1:      ..\artnem\8x8ghz2.bin
    and ensure you're using the latest SonED2, incase older versions didn't support the additional input.

    Hang on a tick... Why is your .sep looking for 8x8ghz.bin instead of 8x8ghz1.bin/8x8ghz2.bin? Your disassembly does include the latter two files, don't they?

    EDIT: Just saw your (first) edit. Yeah, your project files appear to be outdated. I should look into updating them to the later Hivebrain revision later. Just do what I said above, it should make it compatible, I'll do some tests, myself.

    EDIT2: *Sees second edit* That's more or less the right direction, you just want it to load the second file too, the code from earlier should do it. Looking at the level through SonLVL, even with both files, the top row of tiles of a waterfall appear to fall into the same case as the flowers; they will remain as those squares, but only in the editor, ingame should be fine.

    EDIT3 :| : It looks like that guide you mentioned also directs you to an older SonED2, you may have to update.

    EDIT4: I hope this will catch your attention before I'm forced to double post. I got it working. I have the Hivebrain disasm, and those project files you told me about. I put them together, and, yes, the art is broken. Now, the version of SonED2 that guide points you to is old, so go here and download the latest version. Replace your old one with it. Now, follow the instructions I listed above to replace the single pointer with the two pointers and appropriate setting. Open the modified .sep files in the new SonED2, and it should all work. After quickly checking to see if any other pointers are incorrect, this doesn't appear to be the case. After following the instructions, everything should work.
  13. Hmm I've updated and tried to do what you suggested, but when it loads the .sep file, it just shows a black screen, and in the log it shows a whole lot of can't open file messages. I've tried "installing" it with my project as I did originally which worked last time, but this time it doesn't. I used the instructions from the link in my previous post. I think I might just stick with the temporary solution.

    I've also tried just replacing the the necessary code, but just makes the file NULL upon opening it.
  14. Clownacy


    Tech Member
    I could try sending you a working disassembly with stock Hivebrain, the project folder, and SonED2 already set up, so you can compare it to your disassembly and adapt.

    But first, you have your disassembly's folder, and inside is your 'project' folder, which contains the .sep files? The .sep files need to be inside a folder that is inside the disassembly's folder.

    To summarise, inside your disassembly's folder, you have the project folder, the GHZ files it contains are modified the way I directed. You open those .sep files with the newer SonED2.

    Well, here's a disasm slapped together that works. DOWNLOAD SonED2 is in the 'soned2' folder, and the modified project files are in the 'project' folder.

    There shouldn't be any 'file not found' problems since you had it semi-working earlier. You shouldn't have moved the 'project' folder, SonED2, you can move anywhere. Can you open the unedited .sep files with the newer SonED2 and have the same results as with the older one?
  15. Sorry, I was busy for a bit, thank you for a newer and working version of SonED2 with Hivebrain, I'll have a look at it now. [​IMG]
  16. RetroKoH


    Project Sonic 8x16
    FINALLY played this hack... really havent had time to do ANYTHING on the internet lately. I'll try to be more constructive than some... but I honestly don't like this iteration of the hack. It CAN be made into something great though.

    Um... First off, these palettes. I know I mentioned this in my first post... I'm sorry to say, most of them are horrid. That said, not all of them are bad. Act 3 of Zone 1 wasn't as bad as Acts 1 and 2... especially 2. BUT after seeing Acts 1 and 2... Act 3 can easily be looked at with the attitude of "GOD DAMN NO MORE BLUE." I'd be happy to offer suggestions of what to do for palettes... they just shouldn't clash so much. Also... you don't want your foreground and objects blending in with your background. This happens so much... including that HUD. THAT is my biggest, and first complaint. ALSO, for the most part, the colors of constant items like springs and rings and such really shouldn't change. They do in this hack. What they look like in Zone 2 Act 1 is close to what I'd have your sprites look like, personally...

    Level layouts need drastic work. I think that nail's been hit in the head enough. For the most part... it's just slightly bad chunk placement and poor use of your objects. It seems you have some good ideas in mind for level concepts and stuff... but they are poorly implemented. Let's take Zone 2 Act 1... the blocks with the swings. The falling blocks... there are FAR too many of them. I managed to get by not dying but I really had to try hard to do so... I'm a seasoned Sonic player of 20 years. This should not be the case with an obstacle so trivial. I respect that you are trying to take seemingly trivial level sections and put some challenge into them... but don't overdo it. By and large that seems to be the case with your level design. That will come with practice.

    Invincibility sprites could do with a flicker effect. Other than that... and the color (again, slightly too much blue... blends in with Sonic too much) they are ok.

    Monitors and signposts... I assume that like myself, you aren't the best spriter. Try to contact someone who is willing to refine these for you. ChelseaCatGirl... Neo... or others can help you with this.

    I'm not gonna mention the Special stages too much... which I stumbled upon on accident. If you can figure out how to make them a hidden extra at the end like you did with Zone 2, Act 1... that'd be pretty cool.

    I'll play it more and give more feedback. I play it on mute (married man here... gotta listen for my wife) so I've no comments on the sound aspects yet.
  17. Caverns 4

    Caverns 4

    Sonic: Retold
    For one, you're using Soned2 and not SonLvL. Soned2 has an entire one feature that is advantageous over SonLvl (the make level 2p compatible option), and even that's only good for Sonic 2.

    Now, you've gotten plenty of harsh feedback, and frankly, I think it's all deserved.. But, I don't want to be the bad guy. What I'm going to do is offer a few suggestions.

    1: EVERYTHING has shading. Your Sonic palette's darkest color is MS-Paint blue. Consider adjusting the palette to actually fade from the black shade to the lightest color of blue.
    2: A hard white colour against dark blue and/or black doesn't look good. Don't make your level are too dark, or Sonic's white colors will be flat out jarring. You need to have lighter palettes, even for nighttime, if you darken them too much, visibility is at stake.

    3: NEVER make a situation where the player must jump to a place that's off screen This is called "blind jumps" and is the pinnacle of unfair game design. This happens off the top of my head in Labyrinth Zone Act 2, in the falling blocks section.

    4: Speed is something that the player should be able to gain, keep for a while, and get a chance to lose without being punished. It's not fair to ever make a level (and you do this A LOT in Star Light) where the player is given a long stretch with loops and lots of down hill running, only to cut off suddenly to either a random badnik, or worse, a cliff. Most players are going to roll when going downhill, and you can't blame them. It makes you go faster, it protects you from normal badnik damage, and it slows your deceleration. However, it also forces the player to lose their horizontal control of they need to jump from rolling.... So don't encourage us to roll, and then give us a sudden change in pace.

    5: Star light Zone act 3 is THE WORST idea you had in this hack of all. Put a speed section, again, right before the boss, encourage the player to roll, and then suddenly the screen locks and all the player has are blocks that break when rolled on. You can't get onto the platforms to get to the boss fight, because each block barely bounces you, and there's nothing you can do except stall inevitable death. That's not fair to a player at all. I shouldn't have to platform up there in the first place.

    6: If the players can't get through through something without taking damage, DON'T DO IT (Marble boss and Labyrinth Boss come to mind). And your Labyrinth Zone act 3 is also inexcusable. An entire boring, repetitive section of level before the boss, and no checkpoint. It's not fun.

    7: The final boss is.. horrid. If the player falls into the gap on the right side of the screen, they can't get out, and are forced to stand there until a lightening ball kills them. The original boss was fine as it was, your variant is nothing but tedious and annoying... How many hits does that guy take!?

    Remember when you are designing your level to think about what someone who DOESN'T know your level might think or do. In fast sections, they might roll. They also might not. They don't know where every jump is supposed to lead. Put checkpoints in levels in fitting places. Once a player finally beats a challenge, especially ones like the fabricated difficulty crap you've thrown at us, we DON'T want to have to replay it.

    Also, a friend of mine got a game crash once homing attacking a monitor. No idea what the cause was but the error message said "DIVIDE ZERO". So don't divide by zero I guess.
  18. AkumaYin


    I guess I'm here for the same reason as others... to provide criticism and advice. I haven't played the hack 100% thoroughly, so I don't think I've seen everything that I would want to comment on. I will come back and make edits if I find something new.

    Okay, like KingofHarts said, I agree that some of the art isn't the best, but I certainly can't blame you, because I'm not good at pixel art myself. =P It would probably be fine to ask somebody else to help out with the art, though, that's what I would do. Now, for a bit of criticism on that factor. First, the title screen banner has transparent spots on the sides. Second, the art for the life icon and the signpost does look a little odd, but like I said, I can't blame you if you're not very talented in this area. Also, if you happened to want a custom sprite set for Sonic, then I would recommend this sheet. Why? Because it's Classic Sonic-themed, and I feel that it would fit in with a hack about Generations. (The signpost art in that sheet is also very Generations-ish, another reason why I would recommend it.) Of course, you don't have to use it; I just thought I'd point you to a helpful resource.

    As for palettes, I don't have many objections, but you really shouldn't change the palettes for the rings, unless you're making them a slightly different yellow/gold color (I actually like it when people do that.).

    Now, for some gameplay discussion. All in all, I think that the hack is pretty decent, but I'll just go ahead and blabber on. As for the Homing Attack, I'm totally okay with it, and I agree that it will make it better if you map it to one button and give players a choice on whether or not to use it. Now, about the Spin Dash. The dust is buggy, and is it intentional that you make it play the spin sound? Sonic 3's driver does come with the actual Spin Dash sound effect, you know. (Its sound ID is $AB) Also, I did notice a bug at the beginning of Delta Base 1 where I used the Spin Dash through the tube and went spinning into the wall. After that, I flew through the level until I got to a part where the camera pans upward and you're inside a tube. I think you know what happened then. Also, bosses. I think the MAZ boss is cool and all, how you follow it up during the fight, but did you place a hurt tag or something at the top of the arena? Because when I go up there, I keep getting hurt until I die. Also, don't forget the Special Stages! (If for whatever reason they're supposed to be a surprise, then feel free to tell me to remove it.) I find these really neat; how do you make them rotate so smoothly? Also, I happened to notice that you removed the birds and fish; I assume you followed this guide? Now, I'm not saying that they're flawless, as I got stuck in the wall in a few places. However, I do think that the art, sounds, and design you have for them are all just so cool!

    You tired yet? Well, I'm almost done. [​IMG] Here, I'm going to talk about the hack's sound features. It's actually pretty neat how you have Sonic 3's sound driver in the hack, but personally I find it arbitrary in the area of what music you can have, because of the way it uses address pointing. In my opinion, music imports would make this hack even better. To do this, there would have to be a way to add smps2asm compatibility to the driver import, then you could probably have custom music while still being able to use S3K's songs. If the lightning happens to strike and I find something, then I'll share it with you. Also, for some weird reason, the Sega screen cuts off early when playing the Sega sound, so I suggest changing it to play the ring sound or something like that. That way, it's playing something brief before it cuts off.

    Well, that's about all. It would be nice to see this hack improve, and I hope that my comments help.
  19. Well, I've taken both of your advice and asked someone (with experience of course :P ) to refine some of my pixel art. Also, you might also see a new sonic sprite sheet after when my hack's been completely polished. I have now mapped moves now to buttons, e.g. A = Jump Dash, B = Homing Attack, C = Spin Dash, obviously the ABC buttons allow sonic jump. :P

    I have also tried to change the SEGA sound to a ring sound for example, but for some reason, when I change the sound to any other sound (including the ring sound) it just sounds like a heavily muffled, distorted SEGA sound.

    Also, I have re-changed the shield sprite from a electric style shield, to a (yes it's my own design again) white generic style BUT unique, also the invincibility stars are now white too rather than the blue.

    Anyway, there's still much more work to be done yet. And for all of you, think of these releases as build up demo's even though it's a full game. :P

    RetroUser: Ahh, thank you for that, the ring sound works now on the SEGA screen. I actually thought I had to change the file name, which is probably why it made that horrible sound. But now I know that the file names at the bottom of the main script are just declaring the sound effect / music.
  20. AkumaYin


    Hmm, that's odd. Okay, let me show you how I did it.

    So, go to "Sega_WaitPallet:" and you should see a reference to playing the Sega sound. To make it play a ring sound, change that piece of code to this:

    [68k] move.b #$33,d0
    bsr.w PlaySound_Special ; play "SEGA" sound[/68k]
    And that should work. If it doesn't, let me know and give me a few more details. But the thing is, this is an issue in vanilla Sonic 1 to begin with. Try going there and changing what plays at the Sega screen and you get the same issue: it cuts off.

    Anyway, keep on polishing this hack, as seeing improvements would be nice.


    No problem. I'm happy to help.


    Another edit:

    Umm, Clownacy, there's something wrong with the project files you gave out. When you save after loading one, it garbles the tile mappings and possibly messes up the collision.