Just the other day I decided to give Puzzledude's Quest (http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/703/
) another chance. Not long into it, it was obvious that I was not going to be able to deal with the overworld. So I placed the flute in one of the first few chests and took out the overworld mazes (they just bogged the game down). To do so without destroying the game I had to use what I believe was your empty overworld items string in hex.
I have to say, by negating the overworlds I wasn't really missing anything. Your hack mainly seems to focus on the dungeons. There's a bit too much emphasis on the blue/orange blocks but otherwise it's been quite fun and challenging. Although in some cases I would handle it a little differently, I do believe that your use of the star-looking floor tile to indicate that the room puzzle has an unorthodox solution is quite brilliant. Something about solving those little riddles is just SO satisfying. Like the feeling of figuring out the game's original puzzles back in the day. At first I though that adding a bunch of spikes to the floor of the boss rooms was stupid/cheap but then I realized that this required you to devise totally different strategies. For example: Blind. I couldn't go anywhere but two spots near the bottom of the room. I had to wait for the boss to move near the bottom (all the while dodging fireballs) and then when the time was right, I activate the cape and then just start swinging wildly. Rinse and repeat until all three heads of the boss have been beaten. Completely different than playing the boss originally.
I thought I remembered more back-tracking (there was some) but I guess I was getting some of these dungeons confused with PW and GoW. At this point I would again like the point out how painful the overworld mazes are. If I didn't know how to hack and mod this game to remove them that would be it. I wouldn't be able to get passed them because they make it impossible to move across certain areas without having to first walk across every single tile on the screen. In the original game you could cross certain areas in a matter of seconds, now you can't cross any screen without having to waste a minute our two in an annoying maze.
Although I had serious problems with the overworld and in some ways think that this hack feels unfinished (the lack of changes outside of dungeons other than mazes, the seeming lack of a dark overworld) I now believe that this is a very cool hack and it makes me wish that there were more hacks like it and BCvsG.
Good job PD, just not with the overworlds.