Sunday, June 24, 2018

Stage fixes for Project M builds

Project M, the Super Smash Bros. Brawl mod, was discontinued back in 2015. Despite that, even though no more official content has been released, there are several people who still play it as it was back then.

There's also the Netplay build, which allows players fight each other from the distance, in a way better condition than the original online service, which is still working under the wiimmfi server after the wii online services went down. This is a modified version of the last release, Project M 3.6, which contains extra skins, alternate stages, custom music and more improvements with the collaboration of the Legacy team, the ones after Legacy TE and Legacy XP.

Even though both Netplay and Legacy aren't official Project M content, the fact is that many people download them when they get updated. And, on the other hand, there are many TOs who customize their own builds for tourneys.

Anyway, I'm focusing on the Netplay builds. Right now, the current Project M Netplay is known as Netplay V4. Back in 2016, right before the previous version (v3) was released, I wanted to do some testing before it was released, and I was given what was going to be the final build.

I found a few issues, and fixed all of them. I guess the release was made like the day after I sent back the package with the fixes or so. Between those changes, there were changes in 3 stages.

The first one is Balanced Kongo Jungle. It's an edited version of the Kongo Jungle 64 stage in Project M. I'm not really aware of all the differences, I just know that the platforms are lower. The one who lowered the platforms forgot to lower the shadows, so there were some shadows floating in the air. It was easy to fix.

Pokemon Stadium 2 is the Project M version of the Pokemon Stadium 2 stage. I didn't like the looks of the screens in the background, and I decided to experiment with materials, change properties, and fix the UV maps that were already wront in Brawl.

The alternate stage of Yoshi's Island is that one called Yoshi's Fortune in Brawlvault, if I'm not wrong. Shadows were clipping on the platforms and I made a fix, as well as removed some useless nodes from the main model.

Well, the fact is that, even though the 3 of them were present in Netplay V3, for some reason they didn't make it to V4. Maybe the Legacy build they used for V4 already had those stages, and copied them over, instead of using the ones in V3.

If somebody working on either the Legacy builds or the next Netplay version reads this, please consider including them. The fixes are small, but they're done, so there's no reason to not use them. You can find them on Netplay V3. The download can still be found on the ladder.

With all this said, I've done an extra fix for Pokemon Stadium 2. It turns out that the side parts of the main platform don't have character shadows, and it happens even in Brawl. Some mods of the stage actually have shadows there, looks like some modders noticed the issue and fixed it with 2 small shadow models placed on those 2 places in the stage.

Instead of copying that solution, I've made my own one, so there's a single shadow model for the whole main platform. And I've included that in the Pokemon Stadium 2 I fixed for Netplay V3.

So, I've uploaded this version to the vault so people can get it and update their offline builds, and so the ones behind the following Netplay and Legacy builds can include it.

Some pictures showing the fixed screens:
Before - after

This is the vault entry:

Friday, June 27, 2014

Stage Previews

Hi! It's been a really long time since I last posted here. I've decided to start posting here again, as it's a good place to showcase. In this post I'm just showing some of the hacks I've been making since then.

I've made the SSB64 stage I still had not made:

I've revamped some of the other SSB64 stages, to look more like the originals:

I've also made some Melee stages:

Some reskins for the Project M stages:

Some pokémon stages:

More stages:

And there's still more to come:

I'll keep posting stuff individually, old and new, just the way I used to before.

See you around!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Ganon's Castle

Stages are the thing I enjoy the most, specially when they’re based on epic places from epic games.
I’m sure this is one of those epic places from epic games. Near to the end of Ocarina of Time (N64), Link goes where Zelda’s Castle was when he was a child, and he finds a new black castle suspended in the air. It’s commonly known as Ganon’s Tower.

The stage was made before DAE importing was possible. It’s made the same way I made Peach’s Castle and others, just by vertexing already existing brawl models.
Now for the explanations. There are 7 versions of the stage in the download folder. Well, not really, there are 14 stage files if I’m not wrong. 7 of them are for FD and other stages, other 6 go for Eldin and Temple specially. The last one is just one of the others with a different set of models. That one is called ‘original’ because it’s the version using original brawl models. The other 13 versions use compacted versions of those models, made by exporting my brawl models, making them to be 1 single model, and importing them again. This way, the castle itself is made by one model, while in the original version there are like 30 models. Same for ground and other models. But you don’t care about this, cause the stage plays the same (maybe a litte lagless in extreme cases).

So, let’s talk about those 6 different versions:

STGGANONCASTLE_STANDARD – This version is played just at the end of the road that comes from the city, with the castle in the background. Just where Link stands when he sees the castle for the first time. There’s a wall on the left, you can die on the right (walkoff) and upwards.

STGGANONCASTLE_FRONT – In this one, the action is just in front of the rainbow bridge created by the sages. You can die on both sides and upwards. Walkoff again.

STGGANONCASTLE_FRONT2 – In this one, the action is on the rainbow bridge. It's the smaller one, and the boundaries are far, so you're most likely falling into the lava when you're dying.

STGGANONCASTLE_TOWN – This one is facing the opposite, so the town (in 2D) can be seen in the background. It’s a walkoff stage again, with both sides to die and such. It’s near the border and isn’t the best in terms of cameras.

STGGANONCASTLE_RAINBOW – This version is less flat, but still walkoff. You fight on the rainbow bridge, which is taller to the rest of the place.


Well, okay, it seems that I’m doing the same as always, I recreate a stage nicely, but it’s not very playable at all, even with different versions to play. But, here comes the different thing this time. The platformed versions:

STGGANONCASTLE_PLATFORM – I present you this custom platform to play on. This makes the stage non-walkoff anymore, with ledges on both sides, and a decent space to play. It’s similar to Final Destination, but not the same. Because of this, it’s not wifi safe. Still, the playstyle is fitting brawl, and yet not exactly the same as currently existing stages. The Castle is seen in the background, and the lava, and the rainbow bridge. Mostly everything can be seen from there, while you can play a decent match.

STGGANONCASTLE_PLATFORM2 – In addition to the custom platform, there’s another platform floating in the air on the previous one. This way, the stage is not that FD-like, so the advantages for characters are different. People may prefer this one because of this. The rest is exactly the same as the other platformed version.

You can check my youtube channel if you’re interested on looking how the stage looks while playing:
I got plans for this stage to be continued in the future. It’s technically finished, but it will be nice to have new versions, with lightings and a castle which gets collapsed, while ganon awakens in the ruins. But I wanted to leave this for the future, cause I need to work on other stages, and I didn’t want to keep this one in hold for more time. Maybe it isn’t my most beautiful stage, but I’m certainly proud of the result.