Hey. This is my first and latest romhacking project. I'm taking taking Ninja Gaiden and making it 3 times more sadistic, "for the evulz". Well, that was the original goal, anyway. At this point the hack consists almost entirely of ASM code tweaks. Mostly changing enemy behavior, hit points, damage, etc. And it's damn hard, but not Kaizo hard (I have beaten each stage, individually, without savestates). Here's a list of enemy changes:
-The birds got the biggest overhaul. They'll never go past the edges of the screen, so you can't outrun them and scroll them off the screen- the only way to get rid of them is to kill them. Their movement pattern is much more unpredictable and harder to dodge- good luck!
-Tysons (the boxing guys) have 2 HP now, and they regain 1 HP each time they do their punching attack, so the best way to kill them is either from afar, or with two strikes in quick succession.
-The knife-throwing gangsters' knives do 2 points, and they start throwing as soon as they spawn, also the rate of throwing is increased
-Ghouls (and other sword/mace throwing enemies) throw swords twice as fast, up to twice as far, and the swords do 2 points of damage
-Commandos (the machine gun guys) shoot as soon as they spawn, their bullets travel faster, their rate of fire is increased slightly, and their bullets do 2 damage.
-Bats move faster, do 2 points of damage, and swoop a bit higher and lower than before.
-The first boss (who was a total pushover in the first game) also got an overhaul. He's much
faster, deals 4 points of damage, his sword swing actually has appropriate range to match the animation, and the walls of the arena are gone, so now you need to jump over him. Once you get the rhythm down, it's not too hard, but he's pretty tough at first.
-I plan to overhaul every boss eventually.
And there's more...
One of the first changes I made to the game involves enemy spawning behavior. Instead of spawning at the edge of the screen, enemies now spawn almost halfway towards the center- this gives you a lot less time to react to enemies like those crawling Ninjas. It's kind of an exaggerated parody of one of the quirks of the original game, where enemies seemed to materialize on the edges of the screen rather than scrolling onto it. It's pretty diabolical, but I think the challenge it adds is mostly fair, save for a few spots which can be adjusted by hand. I actually like the challenge this adds, but I think some people will find it cheap, and it looks kind of unpolished, so I'm considering toning it down or removing it for the final version (or maybe making two versions of the hack) - feedback would be appreciated on this.
I also made another change to spawning behavior. In the original game, an enemy would respawn instantly whenever you were standing in their 1-tile wide "spawn zone". Now the spawn zones have been greatly extended- probably to about 4 16x16 tiles. Now moving forward through the level to get past the spawn zones is even more critical than before. This is one change I'm probably going to keep. However, it causes some bugs with enemies sometimes spawning in walls, over pits, and other glitchy behaviors. I have a plan to fix this, I just haven't gotten around to it yet as it doesn't impact the gameplay much- it's more of a visual distraction.
Here are some YouTube videos. These were made before my recent changes to the Commandos, Ghouls, and Bats, but they nicely showcase the changes to the birds and spawning. Sorry for the awful quality- I couldn't figure out how to get fceux to record at a resolution higher than 240p.
The first boss:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3OSzkp4MUMw
Here's a download link for the IPS patch:http://www.filedropper.com/ninjagaidenasshole_1
Oh, and savestates from the original game should work with the hack, but if anyone wants a savestate for the beginning of any level (ex. 3-1, if you want to check out the new bird AI), I can give you one.