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Author Topic: Micro Mages: Editor and Community Level Set  (Read 852 times)

NaOH

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Micro Mages: Editor and Community Level Set
« on: February 26, 2021, 10:50:43 pm »

Micro Mages is a 2019 NES game. It is a blast for playing co-op, but unfortunately it's pretty short. The solution? Let's create some more levels!

To start things off, I've made an editor for Micro Mages (which you can download at the link above, or download for windows here). It's a liiiitle laggy, as it's hacked together in Python with the tkinter gui, but it works:



There are two projects in the works to create a community-designed set of levels. A "screen-by-screen" project, where anyone can contribute a single 256x224 pixel screen to the project, and a full individual level project.


Screen-by-Screen

In the #screen-by-screen channel in the discord server linked above, we've started a project to redesign the whole game one screen at a time. Each entrant downloads the current hack, adds a screen, and re-uploads it. Here's the first stage completed:


You'll notice there are 4 distinct 256x224 pixel screens (contributed by different users).

This project is basically guaranteed to result in silly and chaotic levels, but that's the point. If you'd like to contribute, please join the discord server above and claim the next slot. Once you've claimed the next screen, you have 24 hours to upload it before your time is exhausted. You can still sign up again if you don't upload anything. (This is just to prevent two people from colliding and making the same screen.)

Full Levels Pack

For something a bit more meaty, why not a full pack of levels where each level is made by a different user? This is still in the planning stages, so leave your thoughts below if you are interested in joining in this endeavour and how exactly you think it should work. There are a lot of questions to ask, like: what kind of difficulty and difficulty curve are we going for, should we change aspects of the worlds such as palettes and tile types, or perhaps edit the tileset? What about hard mode? We could make some custom ASM bosses and such too. If we can get 13 entrants, that's enough for a full game pack.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2021, 05:19:20 pm by NaOH »

Vanya

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Re: Micro Mages: Editor and Community Level Set
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2021, 06:13:19 pm »
Cool. I can dig it.
I think I'll give it a try.

PolishedTurd

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Re: Micro Mages: Editor and Community Level Set
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2021, 10:28:10 am »
This is such a charming game. The video about how they made it is also inspiring.

What I don't understand is why they limited themselves to ~40K. With a fully expanded ROM, it seems possible to build a randomized level generator into the game itself, like Spelunky. Then you could play forever. :)

You "just" have to come up with the heuristics for the different kinds of level geometry and art, evaluate the player's critical path, place items and enemies in positions and combinations that match the difficulty grade of the stage...

I'm thinking of a similar project for another game. Of course, a community project is a different kind of beast, a collaborative effort that more people can contribute to. But that's where my mind automatically goes.