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It'sa me, Kaizo Mario!

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
I finished Cape is Good, and actually the last couple of levels I played were among my favorites. It also finished with a triple-boss that was decent: Wendy/Reznor with no floor (which I one-shot on the same life) and then a BeeKaay-style boo boss that was significantly harder. It's still a pretty rough hack, but it's easy enough that I can recommend it...at least, for people who like cape.

Also, it turns out that the dream of Invictus speedruns isn't 100% dead. I decided to give it another go this morning and I made it through the first three levels in about 25 minutes, which is a lot better than my last attempt. It turns out that the first half of One By One is just an absolute ball buster, so it's going to take a lot more work that you'd expect from such an early level. But now I know what I'm up against, so I'll try not to get too discouraged if I get stuck there for a while. The first two levels only took about five minutes each this time, which felt pretty dang good.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Also, it turns out that the dream of Invictus speedruns isn't 100% dead. I decided to give it another go this morning and I made it through the first three levels in about 25 minutes, which is a lot better than my last attempt. It turns out that the first half of One By One is just an absolute ball buster, so it's going to take a lot more work that you'd expect from such an early level. But now I know what I'm up against, so I'll try not to get too discouraged if I get stuck there for a while. The first two levels only took about five minutes each this time, which felt pretty dang good.
That's a serious improvement! I'm sure you'll get all those levels consistent if you decide to start doing runs for real.

Meanwhile, today I wrapped up Mario Quits. I beat it in three sittings over the past three days, total clear time was around 6 hours. I didn't love this hack, though my feelings are overall mixed about it. There are some genuinely cool sections and levels, but every single jump is so unnecessarily tight. I feel like you generally have anywhere between half a tile and one-and-a-half tiles of leeway at any given time, which is just too tight. A lot this hack would be super fun if you could just have the tiniest bit of breathing room, but the creator won't give it to you. I'm 100% convinced that the only thing keeping this hack in the intermediate category is the fact that the sections are generally pretty short. If they were any longer, I feel like it would have to be an Expert hack.

Also, all of the hack's "story" is a gigantic shitpost, so if you were to play it, I highly recommend ignoring all the non-tutorial text.

At the end of the day, it's a fine hack, but I don't think I'd necessarily recommend it or play it again.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
In hack-adjacent news, someone made an expanded and browser-based version of D4's music tool for the latest C3. All you have to do is upload an .smc, .bps, or even a straight up .zip file, and it spits out a list of songs used in the hack. It even tells you what level they're used in, and gives links to their individual pages on SMW Central. It's really slick and I encourage you to try it out!

Moving onto hacks proper. I'd seen shovda moderating Hangin' with Mr. Koopa 2 and Super Flash World lately, both looked interesting. I played Hangin' with Mr. Koopa 2 on Monday and didn't like it very much -- it's not particularly tough, the creator's style just didn't work for me. They also had one single playtester and it shows in a few places. Most of the levels have some form of "hold right" section, which isn't super engaging. It's too bad, because I know Miscalc (who made it) has a couple of other hacks. I was hoping if this one was good, I'd want to play their older stuff too, but now I don't feel particularly incentivized.

At the moment I'm 12 exits into Super Flash World and having a better time, though there's at least one troll in every level and I don't really care for that. The hack is tough for its intermediate rating; levels are generally taking about half an hour to clear. But there are some cool ideas and setups, and I'm enjoying it. So far it's pretty impressive for a first hack! It feels very polished and you can tell a lot of work went into it. Should have this one wrapped up by the end of the week.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
That music tool looks extremely cool! I'll have to try a couple bps files on it, see what it spits out.

I've seen a few people playing Super Flash World, it looks like a pretty good time.
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
Finally got back to the kaizo grind again, and cleared a hack in one sitting! I beat Super Mario World Remix, which while not currently classified as kaizo, used to be classified as such, and MASSIVELY influenced what would become modern kaizo. And you know what? It still feels extremely fresh. It was pretty easy for someone of our skill level, but still extremely fun. Worth a play as a one sitting game!

Also, I started Super Sonic Saves the World World, and I think by now everyone knows how much of a massive shitpost that game is. I beat the minecart level, which ended up being a big memory test. I'm excited to dig in more.
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
So we cleared six exits of SSSTWW today, which seems like a decent amount of progress honestly. I don't need to say much about it since both of y'all were there, but this hack rules thus far and I'm really excited to keep going.

On a separate note, I forgot to share this clip from my SMW Remix playthrough. To be clear, this is NOT the intended way to do it. I saw a shovda clip of her doing it and decided to do it too for the swag lol.

 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
That is some tasty cheese.

Six exits is a ton of progress in one sitting for that hack! I know the levels get longer later on (much, much longer), but I've got no doubt you'll get through it.

Having nothing better to do, I wrapped up Super Flash World yesterday. Some of the later levels in this hack are really good, but I still wish there were fewer trolls. Overall there was only one section that I really didn't like (the first half of the penultimate level, where you have to use a fire flower to collect a certain number of coins -- the concept is fine, it's just much tighter than anything else in the hack and it feels like a chore). I'm gonna say this one's worthwhile. Overall clear time was maybe 9-10 hours? I wasn't keeping a close eye on the clock.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
That's an excellent skip, Snake. There's a speed strat involving a p-switch yump in Super World that I was always really happy to get - it only save you about a second, but it's super fun to pull off. And congrats on the big progress in Sanic! I didn't realize the early levels weren't as scary as the later ones. I should probably give that game a try some day, but there are so many hacks to choose from...

And instead of playing any of them, I've just been picking away at my 2nd Invictus runback. For the most part, my clear times are about the same as my last play, but there are a handful of levels with noticeable improvement. I figure if I do 3-4 casual runbacks, maybe I'll actually get to the point where a single-sitting clear starts to look reasonable. I still haven't gotten over the "Rise Again sucks" hump, unfortunately.

Also, I saw Juz play that bit in Flash World with the coin collecting - it looked pretty rough! How's the quest to clear 100 hacks coming?
 
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lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Also, I saw Juz play that bit in Flash World with the coin collecting - it looked pretty rough! How's the quest to clear 100 hacks coming?
Honestly, the second half of that level was fine, but the first half was extremely rough. There's one spot in particular that feels like it should've been addressed in playtesting and somehow no one did. To give you an idea of the difference, the first half took me half an hour and the second half took 10 minutes. I think that's the only single level that took more than 30 minutes.

Anyway, Flash World was 83 hacks and counting! Now I'm back to my near-perpetual state of figuring out what to play next.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Okay, so I decided to try something out of left field and booted up Brave New World. Yes, the one that's "baby's first glitch hack" from a few months ago. And I've actually been flying through it! I'm 8 exits in (out of 10, plus one secret level) and it's been really fun. I thought my run was going to end in a room where you have to do a spring drop midair (not to be confused with a regular spring midair), but after banging my head against it for a while I got lucky. I'm pretty sure I can manage everything else in the hack, but I am worried about the penultimate room where you have to do a bunch of key jumps in a row. I'm really, really not good at those.

It's worth mentioning that the hack has a super cool "Figure It Out" system where you can press select and it'll show you through overlaid text and images how to do whatever it is you're trying to do. Sometimes it's still not super clear, though, which is why it's also awesome that the hack also comes with a visual guide that breaks everything down step-by-step, along with clear videos. With a little luck I'll make it through the key jump room and be able to wrap this hack up soon.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
Oh nice, branching out a little! You should use that momentum and play the Unintended Consequences series, I had a really good time with the first one.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
I tried Unintended Behavior back when it came out, but I couldn't figure out what to do in the first room and felt like a dummy so I stopped. Maybe now that I have more experience it'll be easier, but I'm not in a rush to get back to it.
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
Two more exits down in SSSTWW yesterday one of which you might have heard of that plays Smash Mouth's All-Star on loop. That level was actually really fun, but I don't think I ever want to hear that song ever again. I also cleared the nighttime shell level, which was very creative throughout. The third section in particular really blew me away with how fun it felt. Still really liking this hack, memey music choice aside.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Great progress, Snake!

I wrapped up Brave New World today and really enjoyed it. The key jump room took me 45 friggin' minutes, but I managed to figure out a method that worked for me in the end. Everything else was pretty easy to handle -- except for the spring drop room, that one can suck a butt. I even got the required yump on my first try! I highly recommend this one to you both next time you're in the mood for something different. I think my clear time was somewhere between 2.5-3.5 hours (not sure how long I played yesterday) over two sittings.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
I decided I wanted to do something easy today, so I started in on The Unknown, the follow-up to Orcus. They could've called this hack More-cus, because it's almost exactly the same, but with 42 exits for some reason. Don't let that number scare you, in an hour and 45 minutes I've cleared 31 of them. Unfortunately, many of the levels feel interchangeable and relatively few of them stand out. Jordan definitely has a level design style, but I was hoping they'd break out of it a bit for a bigger hack. I'll finish it up because the jumping is serviceable enough, though I'd be hard-pressed to name anything really memorable about it so far.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
If I was going to pick one of the Jordan hacks to play, should Orcus be the one? It seems to be really popular with people who learned kaizo in the last few months. Amazing how different the easy hack selection is compared to where it was when we started, not even two years ago...

Snake, you are really making me want to actually, for-real play SSSTWW*. But it's still going to be a little while, because I'm like 99% sure that I'll be starting Mostly Harmless next.

But speaking of Maddy, I bought a travel dock for my Switch and I wanted to test it yesterday, so I played about 10 minutes of Celeste. Thinking back on the experience of playing that game, I think Maddy might (allegedly) be a genius. Between that and her RHR level(s) from Saturday, both of which were really cool, it's been a Very Maddy Weekend.
 

RT-55J

definitely not a robot
(He/Him + RT/artee)
Speaking of RHR, I watched that on whim on Saturday and enjoyed seeing some names I recognized from this very thread. I don't really have anything to add here myself, other than that I've enjoyed watching y'all's progression to true-doom-kaizo-heads, so to speak. Keep it up!
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
Awesome! It's a super cool community, and the race level every week is definitely a highlight. You get all the up-and-coming creators, plus a slew of people you've never heard of who are absurdly good at SMW.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
If I was going to pick one of the Jordan hacks to play, should Orcus be the one?
Yeah, probably. 42 exits of The Unknown isn't appreciably different.

To be honest, I think Jordan is kind of overrated as a creator. I played Orcus at some point last summer and I remember thinking that it was fine, but pretty same-y all the way through. That's how I've felt about The Unknown so far, since it doesn't really feel like they've grown in between hacks. Every level is one single screen high, every level is mostly a bunch of regrabs. But people love these hacks and I'm not really sure why. That's not to say there's anything wrong with them, it's just a lot of the same thing over and over again.

Speaking of RHR, I watched that on whim on Saturday and enjoyed seeing some names I recognized from this very thread. I don't really have anything to add here myself, other than that I've enjoyed watching y'all's progression to true-doom-kaizo-heads, so to speak. Keep it up!
Hey, that's rad! I don't race because I don't stream, but Mike and Snake are both forces to be reckoned with. If you spend any time on Twitch feel free to say hi if you see either of them streaming, chances are good all three of us will be there.

Actually, Mike and Snake, what did you think of the race? I tuned in right as you both were finishing but I need to go back and watch the VOD to see the whole level.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
I thought the level was very fun, it uses the same "whole bunch of checkpoints" concept as Maddy's SGDQ race level (allegedly) did. I was surprised at how fast everyone finished, and a little disappointed that I didn't do better, but that wasn't the level's fault. But there's a second level included with a special type of block that launches a shell when you hit it, along with stop signs that hold shells in place until you land on them. I actually enjoyed that one even more, but it might have just been because I didn't have the stress of the race. I'd recommend giving them a try! The whole thing will take you less than an hour, guaranteed. Also, the music in both levels rules.
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
The race level was one of my favorite levels, I think, ever? No lie.

I have taken a break from SSSTWW to start training for the next RHR level, which is made by shaoshao. To start, I have started Ides of March, his first hack, and having a really good time with it. It feels like a love letter to old-style vanilla kaizo, with direct references scattered throughout. Got through 7 exits in like 2 hours. Can recommend so far, with the caveat that it is INCREDIBLY trolly (albeit with some funny trolls).
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
Finished Ides of March today! Gosh that was a fun hack, a very reverent love letter to old-school kaizo design with some very unusual setups that really tested my platforming and read skills. Ended with a compact but challenging four-room castle with no checkpoints. Tough but fun. Recommended if you're into that kind of thing and don't mind being trolled in every level.

I think tomorrow I'm going to do a fryinb-athon and sprint through Memory Lane and Shellax. I hear they're good!
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
I may have to look into Ides of March. And I really liked Memory Lane! It's also a love letter to old-school kaizo, but way fewer trolls. You shouldn't have any trouble getting through it in one go!
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
I beat Memory Lane today! It had quite a bit more bite than I was expecting, but the levels flowed extremely well. I loved sailing through them. It's a good hack!

Sadly, I did not have time to start Shellax today, but will start that in earnest tomorrow. Looking forward to revisiting the world of shells!
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Nice work on Memory Lane! Always feels great to clear a hack in a single sitting. That one wasn't the first I did all at once (I'm pretty sure that was Cute Kaizo World), but it might've been the second.

I had a good kaizo day too. I started out with Maddy's (alleged) RHR levels from Friday and had a blast. I know I didn't have the stress of racing live, but I cleared the first one in 10-13 minutes (I didn't catch exactly when I started the level) and the second in 12. Both were really great and super satisfying to play through. Both levels are great, I think I agree with Mike that I liked the B-side even more. Does anyone know what Margot's part in these was? Were they collab levels? She wasn't credited on stream as a creator and there aren't any credits in the race patch itself either.

Speaking of the fact that there was an extra level, I don't know how much of the race stream you all saw, but at one point Doctor No mentions that the extra level is no accident -- apparently there's something bigger coming down the pipe, but he couldn't tell us what it is yet. New Maddy hack (allegedly)? Maddy/Margot collab hack? Whatever it is, if it means we get more levels like these two, sign me up.

Anyway, after those, I took Snake's recommendation and booted up Ides of March. I'm enjoying that one quite a bit too! The trolls really haven't been that bad, and the fact that the sections are so short really helps. After about an hour and 20-25 minutes, I'm 12 exits in. There were a couple of sections/setups that felt a little sketchy, but the hack was made in two weeks so I can understand if it didn't get a ton of playtesting. Looking forward to wrapping this one up tomorrow.

I really should play more race levels even if I can't join in the races. Playing last week's made me realize that I'm missing out on a whole world of cool stuff. I've considered applying to be a playtester, but I'm not sure what kind of time commitment that'd entail. (I'm also not sure I'm good enough, frankly. The people who playtest now are all absolute monsters.) At the very least, I definitely want to start playing them more. I saw that Orka's got a new level coming up in a few weeks, so at the very least I've gotta get in on that.
 

SilentSnake

Administrator
(He/him)
Staff member
Moderator
Nice work on Memory Lane! Always feels great to clear a hack in a single sitting. That one wasn't the first I did all at once (I'm pretty sure that was Cute Kaizo World), but it might've been the second.

I had a good kaizo day too. I started out with Maddy's (alleged) RHR levels from Friday and had a blast. I know I didn't have the stress of racing live, but I cleared the first one in 10-13 minutes (I didn't catch exactly when I started the level) and the second in 12. Both were really great and super satisfying to play through. Both levels are great, I think I agree with Mike that I liked the B-side even more. Does anyone know what Margot's part in these was? Were they collab levels? She wasn't credited on stream as a creator and there aren't any credits in the race patch itself either.

Speaking of the fact that there was an extra level, I don't know how much of the race stream you all saw, but at one point Doctor No mentions that the extra level is no accident -- apparently there's something bigger coming down the pipe, but he couldn't tell us what it is yet. New Maddy hack (allegedly)? Maddy/Margot collab hack? Whatever it is, if it means we get more levels like these two, sign me up.

Anyway, after those, I took Snake's recommendation and booted up Ides of March. I'm enjoying that one quite a bit too! The trolls really haven't been that bad, and the fact that the sections are so short really helps. After about an hour and 20-25 minutes, I'm 12 exits in. There were a couple of sections/setups that felt a little sketchy, but the hack was made in two weeks so I can understand if it didn't get a ton of playtesting. Looking forward to wrapping this one up tomorrow.

I really should play more race levels even if I can't join in the races. Playing last week's made me realize that I'm missing out on a whole world of cool stuff. I've considered applying to be a playtester, but I'm not sure what kind of time commitment that'd entail. (I'm also not sure I'm good enough, frankly. The people who playtest now are all absolute monsters.) At the very least, I definitely want to start playing them more. I saw that Orka's got a new level coming up in a few weeks, so at the very least I've gotta get in on that.
I often feel like I'm a bit numb to trolls, so I'm overly cautious about making sure to note the number of trolls in a hack to make sure someone who isn't as numb as me won't have a bad time. There are trolls in every level of Ides of March, but none of them really bothered me that much, and some of them were legitimately clever. Not everyone can roll with that many trolls, however. I dunno.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
I really should play more race levels even if I can't join in the races. Playing last week's made me realize that I'm missing out on a whole world of cool stuff. I've considered applying to be a playtester, but I'm not sure what kind of time commitment that'd entail. (I'm also not sure I'm good enough, frankly. The people who playtest now are all absolute monsters.) At the very least, I definitely want to start playing them more. I saw that Orka's got a new level coming up in a few weeks, so at the very least I've gotta get in on that.
You realize that a 13-minute clear would put you into the top three for last week's race, right? I'm pretty sure you're good enough to do some testing! And I bet it would be fun for you, too - the people and creators involved in RHR all seem super cool.

I'm going to have to go back through the last few pages of this thread and get all your single-sitting (or 2/3 sitting) hack recommendations. It's awesome to be able to just sit down and run through an entire kaizo hack, I should do it more often.

There are trolls in every level of Ides of March, but none of them really bothered me that much, and some of them were legitimately clever. Not everyone can roll with that many trolls, however. I dunno.

I get irritated at lazy trolls, your bog-standard kaizo blocks and falling fish. If they do something that legitimately surprises me, then I love them. It has to be tough for creators to know which is which, so in general I prefer hacks that have fewer trolls. That one level shaoshao made in Roger Gang had a ton of kaizo blocks, and by the end I was well fed up with them.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
You realize that a 13-minute clear would put you into the top three for last week's race, right? I'm pretty sure you're good enough to do some testing! And I bet it would be fun for you, too - the people and creators involved in RHR all seem super cool.

I'm going to have to go back through the last few pages of this thread and get all your single-sitting (or 2/3 sitting) hack recommendations. It's awesome to be able to just sit down and run through an entire kaizo hack, I should do it more often.
Eh, I dunno. I'm sure I wouldn't have been as fast if I'd actually been racing against people because of nerves.

Anyway, here's some 1-3 sitting hacks I've played in the past few months and would recommend:
-Memory Lane
-Tebeo
-Don't Panic
-Flip the Switch (not easy)
-Nightmares
-Super Husky World 2
-Tortured Souls (not easy, but fast-paced)
-Ambivalence (which you've beaten)
-The Getaway
-Super Nothing World (you just did this one)
-Brave New World
-Ides of March (even though I'm not done yet)

Worth noting that of that list, I think I only cleared Memory Lane and Husky World 2 in single sittings. The other single-sitting hacks I've played recently I'm either not sure I'd recommend, or you also already played them (like Love Yourself).

I often feel like I'm a bit numb to trolls, so I'm overly cautious about making sure to note the number of trolls in a hack to make sure someone who isn't as numb as me won't have a bad time. There are trolls in every level of Ides of March, but none of them really bothered me that much, and some of them were legitimately clever. Not everyone can roll with that many trolls, however. I dunno.

I get irritated at lazy trolls, your bog-standard kaizo blocks and falling fish. If they do something that legitimately surprises me, then I love them. It has to be tough for creators to know which is which, so in general I prefer hacks that have fewer trolls. That one level shaoshao made in Roger Gang had a ton of kaizo blocks, and by the end I was well fed up with them.
Yeah, I agree with Mike that the lazy trolls are no fun. One of the spots in Ides that I've really disliked is the falling fish in the slope level, because you're trying to do some tight jumps on two small slopes and this fish that's absurdly hard to avoid just keeps coming at you. It's not funny and it doesn't make you move in a creative way, it's just annoying. On the other hand, there's one troll in the first switch palace that I thought was pretty good. At least the sections are so short in that hack that even if a troll does get you, it doesn't take much to get back and get past it. But yeah, overall I'd prefer not to be trolled. Stop getting in the way of my running and jumping!
 
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