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VLDC9 - vanilla level design contest 9

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Nimono
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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby Nimono » 2 years ago

ft029 wrote:
Nimono wrote:The first section isn't that creative.
What are you even saying?

-the 1up puzzle
-thwimps through layer 2
-avoiding oscillating bubbles
-avoiding meticulously calculated spinies and lakitus and waiting for a spiny to push the red koopa far enough so that Mario can get through
-lakitus are still a threat afterward
-jumping underneath the jumping fish
-shell kicker destroys magikoopa magic
-using floating rip van fish to stall the player so that he or she has to run under the 4 thwimps
-using bouncing chucks, spinies, and charging chucks to blockade areas
-jumping on lakitus
-more calculated spiny eggs that will change the direction of the jumping fish
-green paratroopas going through layer 2 and water that helps slow their jumps down
-waiting on a platform while avoiding rip van fish, and then jumping off after the fish are gone and also because the lakitu eggs would hit Mario on the platform
-going back and forth on a floating platform while avoiding spiny eggs falling from the sky

I seldom / never see any of this done, and it's all extraordinarily clever in every single way possible. Come on man.
Thankfully the 5/60 wasn't justified, but still, your claim that the first section of this level isn't creative is just flat out incorrect.
okay okay okay, sorry. it was creative. somehow, between me watching the video and typing that up, i'd completely forgotten most of the setups in the level >>; but i still didn't see most of that in my playthrough, the first part kept killing me

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby Kowkarot » 2 years ago

I honestly think the part with the koopas at the very beginning is one of the weakest parts of Matterhorn. I always tried to go through them quickly because it worked once or twice, and because I had a hit to tank it. I just never actually did it the intended way. That one part leaves a bad first impression, because it is really easy to misunderstand as something you do with just a precise jump, which makes you think the whole level will be the same type of thing. I saw Pyro getting frustrated for this exact reason on her stream and I can easily picture Nimono and a lot of people doing the same.

And about what's coming next: Does raocow know about the secret exit in THAT level? I'm worried he'll start looking for it for hours just to give up and then use the green door. He might as well just use the green door right away after beating the level normally. Suffering through Matterhorn is one thing, but finding that secret exit is just...no.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby Lockirby2 » 2 years ago

If you are worried about viewers losing interest during a stream, maybe you could set levels like this aside to give them a better go later.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby S.N.N. » 2 years ago

Kowkarot wrote:And about what's coming next: Does raocow know about the secret exit in THAT level? I'm worried he'll start looking for it for hours just to give up and then use the green door. He might as well just use the green door right away after beating the level normally. Suffering through Matterhorn is one thing, but finding that secret exit is just...no.
I've bitched about it enough in this thread, but it's worth reiterating since it'll be coming up within two days: please, for your sanity and everyone else's, do not go for the secret exit in the left castle level (with the green door). It doesn't even deserve a legit attempt. The normal exit is "fine", but that secret is the worst thing.

The two levels after are decent enough I guess, though the top of the castle may be a one level video.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby Ryrir » 2 years ago

Matterhorn is just such an amazing level

It very much feels like something worldpeace could have done for c/c or loop2 or whatever (and that's pretty much the highest compliment I'm able to give lol)

Once you actually understand each obstacle, it's very unlikely that you'll ever get hit by it again. I agree with Koopster that it's a lot of learning by dying until you get to that point, but the level is definitely not impossible to play without tools. Getting all the dragoncoins is a different story though, and the level would have been a lot better if they would have saved upon collection like in JUMP.

If anything, it seems like the level was "wasted" on vldc, dude could have just made a few small modifications and easily gotten first place in a kaizo contest instead

(I also think it's pretty funny how many swiss people there are on the talkhaus, it seems kind of disproportional to the actual population size)
this is getting laundromatic

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby Nimono » 2 years ago

Lockirby2 wrote:If you are worried about viewers losing interest during a stream, maybe you could set levels like this aside to give them a better go later.
This is true. I had even told my viewers I'd just do it on my own time, I just...ended up not doing that out of frustration, and out of insistence that I stream ALL my playthroughs of a level. That ain't happenin again. I intend to stream the VLDCX levels when the contest is finished, giving my thoughts on them, but if I hit a level that gives me trouble, I'll just save it for later instead of never coming back to it.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby xfix » 2 years ago

In next video, you will see level called FLASH BLACK. The normal exit is... I will talk about that when the video comes (but it does deserve a warning). The secret exit, please DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK just use goal room. It's just not worth it. I'm serious here. DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK. Did you find dragon coin in Angel Cliffs or secret exit of Simple Path to be worst thing ever? No, this is the worst thing, DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK.

Repeating S.N.N.'s comment.
S.N.N. wrote:I've bitched about it enough in this thread, but it's worth reiterating since it'll be coming up within two days: please, for your sanity and everyone else's, do not go for the secret exit in the left castle level (with the green door). It doesn't even deserve a legit attempt. The normal exit is "fine", but that secret is the worst thing.

The two levels after are decent enough I guess, though the top of the castle may be a one level video.
And, please DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK. No, seriously, DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK. It's the worst thing I've played (ultimately I just checked walkthrough AND THEN used green orb door), and I did play a lot of SMW levels, some were really bad. Normal exit of Sky at the Weird isn't anywhere as bad.

...

Ahem, I can defend Matterhorn all day long, it's a really well designed level (just way too long), I do consider it as "would have been Top 10 but was too hard for its own good". But the Layer 2 part and offscreen Lakitu in Sky at the Weird is very poorly designed (deaths come as cheap, which is a ragequit moment), and I have no idea why it doesn't have goal sphere room. Layer 2 room can be skipped by reentering the pipe you came from, but that skips Dragon Coins.

DON'T PLAY SECRET EXIT OF FLASH BLACK

Last edited by xfix on 11 Feb 2017, 13:24, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby Money » 2 years ago

I'm a firm believer that generators aren't inherently bad. That being said, I also believe that most levels that use them dont use them to aid their design, but rather to get an "extra dose" of difficulty. Ideally, generators would primarily be used in fairly open areas that give the player a lot of control, allowing the player to "freestyle" and show off/test their skills in improvisation and rushing through. The design should make it so "unsalvageable" situations can't really happen (or are very unlikely), giving several ways around the situation. It's a shame that most people either write off generators completely, or use them without any consideration given to the changes it makes to gameplay.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby zagesaw » 2 years ago

Abstract World is so damn tragic. You have levels that do so many wonderful things but are ultimately crippled by a serious flaw that completely ruins it.

First you have Matterhorn which is one of the most creative levels in the entire contest. I love all the gimmicks used but I instantly stopped playing the level and took the green door once I knew there were 3 sublevels worth of stuff before the first midway point. Only having 1 midpoint completely ruins the level for a contest like this, making it too difficult to play without using tools for most players.

Sky at the Weird is my least favorite level in the contest because of the autoscrolling room and the off screen lakitu giving me a ton of rage. It just felt incredibly unfair, and it sucks because I actually really like the aesthetics and I liked the level up to the autoscrolling room.

Flack Black could potentially take 2 videos if you choose to fully do the level. This would have been my least favorite level to play if it didn't get the green door but thankfully you don't have to do the secret exit. It's your call if you want to do it. The normal exit is honestly bad enough already.

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Re: VLDC9 - valiant long diabolical colossus 9

Postby S.N.N. » 2 years ago

If the autoscroll room was removed (or clarified), and the Lakitu was taken out, I honestly could have seen Sky at the Weird making it in the top 15-20. There were some great ideas (i.e. the brown chained platforms) and some cool aesthetics. Shame.

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Pyro » 2 years ago

Sky at the Weird is complete ass garbage and it's imo the worst level in the contest (I haven't played flash back but it would probably be lower :P). The whole level is just an incredibly frustrating mess with stupid sprite replacements and then it just never ever ends. The brown platform behavior is bizarre, too bad it's used like twice and instead of that you just get dumb unclear sprite replacements, tons of munchers everywhere and an offscreen lakitu. It's really bad. I really wouldn't call it tragic and say "oh if it just had removed this it'd be good" well the offending rooms are literally half the level lol. It also just tries so hard to be "ABSTRACT" which bugs me a lot. You have stuff like fabulatory which actually put thought into their enemy graphics and they look really cool but then you get this where the person just probably slapped whatever they could find on some gfx files in yychr.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby FrozenQuills » 2 years ago

now THIS is a level that lacked clarity

when I first saw this level I thought it would be at least alright since it had so much effort put into the aesthetics (bg + layer 3 movement looks great too). But it went beyond aesthetics to the point where the level lacked clarity as to what is what. Greatest offenders are dolphin tail spikes, cloud water, and nonsolid propellers.

also really didn't like how cramped the autoscroller was and the off-screen lakitu of course.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Grounder » 2 years ago

i liked the monty mole shell thing
Why don't you eat me?

I am perfectly tasty...

AND I'LL STEAL YOUR SOUL! :twisted:

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby BobisOnlyBob » 2 years ago

The sprite changes were interesting and fun! The generators - Lakitu included - were not.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Stink Terios » 2 years ago

Man, Sky at the Weird is so freaking bad. And yet if the autoscrolling room was scrapped, the generator removed, and same for thw lakitu, it would be one of the best levels ever! But as it stands it's trash garbage.

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Koopster » 2 years ago

52nd: SKY AT THE WEIRD by Carld923
Nimono
DESIGN: 17/30
CREATIVITY: 13/20
AESTHETICS: 6/10
TOTAL: 36/60

ninja boy
DESIGN: 14/30
CREATIVITY: 18/20
AESTHETICS: 10/10
TOTAL: 42/60
I will start off and say that this level lost some points for design based on the sprite graphics since some of them on first encounter you couldn't tell when they were, though to be fair most of them did have some characteristics of graphic swaps like only being able to spin jump on specific enemies and so fourth. It also lost some points due to the dolphin fins hurting you which to be honest didn't look like it'd be the case until I hit one. The level itself as a whole was really good and made use of a clever glitch with the spinning platforms but I kind of wished it was used a bit more.

Eternity
DESIGN: 12/30
CREATIVITY: 16/20
AESTHETICS: 7/10
TOTAL: 35/60
It's definitely an... interesting level, but it does get >too< weird at times. There's no real indication that the Doplhins are spikes, for example, and that can lead to unfair deaths pretty much right at the level start. The skull ship's propellers also seem sloid but they actually aren't, leading to the same issue. The first part of the level also worked a lot better than the rest, the autoscroll section just doesn't work for the most part (it's way too slow-paced and lacks interesting challenges, specially when compared to the first) and the Lakitu at the start of the third section is too high for the player to see it at first, once again leading to some unfair hits with the spinies. There are a few interesting ideas, though, such as the Hopping Flames + water at the end, but this needs a lot more polish overall.

OTHER: the sprite GFX edits are pretty lol but not really confusing for the most part, nice stuff

Koopster
DESIGN: 16/30
CREATIVITY: 16/20
AESTHETICS: 7/10
TOTAL: 39/60
I really dig the sprite replacements and overall nonsensical look of this, but it was kind of confusing at times; I couldn't tell at first the dolphin tails hurt me. The autoscrolling section was really confusing with the grayed out black boxes that made me think the propellers were solid way too often. It's a cramped section; overall weaker than the rest. In the last room, the lakitu was kind of a pest since it mostly wasn't viewable. I thought the first room was the best of all. I liked the usage of the clipping glitch with the platform, and I really think you should've developed on that more! Overall, this was a neat set of good gimmicks for an abstract level, but in the end, it felt kind of unfocused and ended a little suddenly.


I'm a forgiving judge sometimes... (what the hell is up with my unmatching scores though?)

Ha, I just had another peak at Flash Black's secret exit in Lunar Magic.
It's my lowest score in the contest and it's not even about the secret exit, to be honest. I was done with it even before the midpoint in the main path.
Last edited by Koopster on 11 Feb 2017, 15:58, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Money » 2 years ago

I think you put Nimono's review twice

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Koopster » 2 years ago

Umm... looks like ninja boy's comment got proccessed twice actually.

I looked into Nimono's .xls and this level doesn't seem to have comments. (Jack made not updated commentary files public for some reason :v)
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby raocow » 2 years ago

really? Because that's an awfully thourough commentary coming from kid ninja.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Sebby19 » 2 years ago

In that last room, it looked like you could go right from the pipe for something. I was very worried the last dragon coin was there, until it showed up.

I wonder what was there.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Kowkarot » 2 years ago

I really hate Sky at the Weird, I think it's the worst level in the whole contest. It's just garbage.
Like, I have a lot of patience, so much that I beat the whole hack without using tools. I mean, I remember having a blast beating Matterhorn without tools, even though it took me hours. And then, the next day, I played this shit...and I ended up absolutely frustrated and angry. Maybe I would've hated Flash Black more if I had played it first. But by the time I got there, I was already dead inside, killed by Sky at the Weird.

I felt something similar for a certain level in the top 10's. I don't know why, I think it's something related to what Pyro said. It just tries so hard with the aesthetics. The palette is depressing, you don't know what's solid and what isn't, the enemies are unclear at first sight. All that combined with the terrible design choices like that goddamn Lakitu...ugh. It's just bad in every way. If the design had stayed the same it was in the first room, it would've been SO much better.

So if you wanna make a level that at least doesn't suck, play this one. It will teach you all the things you should NOT do.

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby Nimono » 2 years ago

This was my comment for the level:

"The overall theme of the level is hilarious and weird in a good way, but the difficulty of the second room is just out of this world... How on earth are you supposed to survive it without getting hit!?"

the reason for that comment is that I believe it's a design flaw if you can't realistically get through a room without getting hit, UNLESS getting hit is required to proceed and this fact is made clear and easy. Some people still consider it a design flaw even then, but I personally don't. See: CLDC'16, if raocow decides to play that. (Speaking of which, raocow, let me know if you want to play it- I can send you a .zip containing each ROM, labelled in order of submission and stating who made the level!)

Oddly, Jack used an OLDER version of my scoring file for the collab- in my file, I actually updated Matterhorn to have 1 point in design, and there were a few levels he pointed out to me were missing scores or comments, and I updated them and sent them to him.

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby nothobz » 2 years ago

Lazy if you see this i loved your level (even though i didnt play it myself)
i wish i had your zany creativity. or maybe i dont considering you only got 88th :oops: :oops: :cry:

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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby raocow » 2 years ago

Nimono wrote: (Speaking of which, raocow, let me know if you want to play it- I can send you a .zip containing each ROM, labelled in order of submission and stating who made the level!)
very yes please. It won't be the next project obviously but I super want to do that eventually!

also people who said today's level is the worst level in the game are crazy. The worst is Flash Back by a landslide.
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Re: VLDC9 - vertiginous latticework donning creatures 9

Postby xfix » 2 years ago

Yeah, normal exit of FLASH BLACK is garbage. I didn't want to mention that, to not suggest things.

But the secret exit is much worse than that. I'm not even sure how it managed to do so. This is why I put many uppercase requests to not play the secret exit. I don't think many people want angrycow for 4 hours, and then use the goal room to get it. No, that's not a joke.


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