Monthly update on the 21st!
Unfortunately, I don't have much to report this time around. In fact, I don't think that I've even touched the Kickle Cubicle hack for the whole month since I last posted. Real life has been the priority, and it doesn't seem like things will slow down.
With all things considered - being busy and how no one has expressed interest overall in my current developing project and/or collaborating on it (or really, anything else) - I may or may not just end up discarding the whole Pokémon theme altogether. Much like every other past project besides the Balloon Fight level hacks, it feels like "Cranreuch" or whatever the heck it'll be called is becoming just another heavy weight that I need to finish simply to be done with it so that I can move on to something else.
While I could just work on something else and then come back to it later, I've never liked that idea. I see too many other people have multiple projects that they'll most likely never touch again, and they could still be starting even more projects to add to their plate. I've only ever liked to have one developing project at any given time (not considering the whole Quick Bros. 2 thingymabobber).
However, in other news, earlier this week, I only just noticed a video that the JamesNintendoNerd YouTube channel uploaded for Luigi's Chronicles 2.
(Published on Wednesday, April 27, 2016.)
I attempted to leave a comment on it Tuesday morning, but it never showed up publicly. I can view it while I'm logged in, though. Most likely it was too long and it'll never be approved. I replied to a couple other comments, and while those comments seemed to be visible for a little while, all of them quickly disappeared too.
Either way, at the end of this post, I'll leave off with my initial, thorough comment basically expressing my surprise, regrets, and gratitude for the video concerning the hack.
Thanks again to the whole Angry Video Game Nerd/Cinemassacre crew for taking the time to play and make a video of one of my hacks, and for all of the entertainment over the many years that I've watched them. Also, thanks to Googie for letting me join the project and for pointing out the limited level spaces in SMB3 to help initially open my eyes as I was just beginning to ROM hack way back in October 2007, and for all of my YouTube friends and other online companions for all of the support over the years. You're the folks who help keep me going.
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I was very, very surprised to see this.
I remember noticing the reproduction cartridge listed in Mike's NES collection at least 2, maybe even 3 years ago.
I do have regrets for how this hack ultimately came together. Primarily, the palettes. My eyes are messed up, so everything always visually bleeds together for me. As in, I ironically don't truly see how monochrome everything turns out to be. I also believe that I should have had many more starting lives or just eliminated lives altogether like some other SMB3 hacks have done in the past. I remember seeing that one of the reproduction cartridge sites modified the hack to start with 99 lives.
My direction for the palettes was to avoid using the same old colour schemes that every other hack tends to use, but there are only so many colours to work with for NES, and I tried to use ones that weren't as common (because I'm the abnormal ROM hacker). I suppose that's why they aren't so commonly used. However, I also prefer dark light, and my direction for the hack's atmosphere was to be dark. This isn't supposed to be an overly colourful, happy adventure. The Mario brothers are doomed to relive the same depressing, dark journey day by day, game by game. It's not necessarily a celebration of sorts. Still, I certainly would have benefited from perspectives of people experienced with colour.
This hack was designed years ago, and I first and foremost basically design levels for my own personal playing experience, which I know from past instances is not the common one. I played this game more than anything else while growing up to the point that I wanted a completely new, unfamiliar, overly difficult experience that was heavy on unforeseeable exploration (but still not "kaizo"); an experience that I could invest and immerse myself in for years much like the original SMB3 did until I turned over every stone and pebble. So, I add many layers to a single level, because straightforward, linear levels are also so overdone and way too common, and against the very idea that attempting to rescue the princess should be no walk in the park. Only the truly devoted plumbers deserve to receive the golden wrench from the town mayor.
I noticed that many people found vhernandez2121's complete play-through of this hack, and it was accomplished without save-states and other manipulative tools. Many of my closest YouTube friends from the past were who we design these kinds of hacks for. I've designed other hacks that attempt to be more easier than this one, but I acknowledge that the likely reason this hack is the most popular and the only reproduction I've seen to date is because it's Luigi, despite the actual content and true original intentions of its creation. Much like the original prequel.
I do appreciate the feedback provided by Mike's and Bootsy's own perspectives. Sorry for the difficulty preventing this video presentation from showing more of the project overall. Though as outlined above, I don't know if this hack really works best in this kind of format, since it was originally designed to be an extensive dark journey that takes time to familiarize oneself with first. Simultaneously, seeing the hack get more publicly recognized, even if it means all of its flaws are revealed on a larger scale, kind of completes my life now. Though, I will still continue to hack, whether people care and like it or not!
I've probably even tried to directly help progress more projects from other people forward than the number of projects I've completed over the years, and I still do my best to remain active in the community to continue doing that. Heck, if anyone reading this who isn't familiar with SMB3 hacking has always dreamed of creating their own experience, please, by all means, feel free to ask your questions. If there's one thing I always look forward to, it's more new and unique SMB3 experiences. I'm definitely not the most experienced SMB3 hacker by any means, but it's my favourite and most committed game, and I do my best to be the most available and accessible SMB3 hacker. I've held the hands of many other beginners in the past (even if most to all of them never completed their project because they lost interest in hacking overall) and I do my best to help pass on what I've had to figure out on my own.
Thank you, Mike and Bootsy, for playing this! I've been watching the channel for many, many years. It's awesome that the channel has grown over time to cover many more forms of entertainment. You all rock! Wish you all the best, always.