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  #1    
Old May 2nd, 2014 (09:51 AM). Edited January 12th, 2015 by Christos.
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Welcome to the ROM Hacking Daily Chit Chat! This place is for any kind of discussion, be it ROM Hacking or anything in general, so anything is allowed as long as you follow the global forum rules. Post freely!
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (10:04 AM).
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And here I thought I wouldn't live to the day when ROM Hacking would get the DCC...
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (10:06 AM).
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Quote originally posted by Satoshi Ookami:
And here I thought I wouldn't live to the day when ROM Hacking would get the DCC...
Welcome to a new era! An era of inclusion and gratitude. How has everyone's days been? ^_^
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (10:07 AM).
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A Rom Hacking DCC? Awesome.

I'm anxious to see if this'll catch on :q
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (10:41 AM).
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Quote originally posted by Shinx:
Welcome to a new era! An era of inclusion and gratitude. How has everyone's days been?
Since I returned to ROM hacking, I thought this place would be much more quiet - glad I was mistaken. The last couple of days were just fine - had a couple of days free to myself, so I could map some routes and cities.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (11:36 AM). Edited May 2nd, 2014 by Spherical Ice.
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inb4 this devolves into another simple questions thread
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (11:37 AM).
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I'll just move the posts into their own thread in the Beginner's Lounge forum. Yay for moderation n_n
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (11:44 AM).
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haha that's good

Anyway, what do you guys think about the dichotomy of "natural" mapping and Game Freak-styled (i mean good lmoa) mapping? In my opinion "natural" maps are just trying to be artistic without considering the principles of level design or navigation, and often results in a mess of trees and bushes and no clear sense of direction.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (11:47 AM).
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I wouldn't say that natural mapping is bad, and honestly, should level design be at the forefront of ones mind when making a map, it should be able to surpass GF design. In any type of map design, if one doesn't consider level design, of course the map will be bad, but that goes without saying.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (11:51 AM).
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does any one know any good hacks
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (11:57 AM).
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Quote originally posted by machomuu:
I wouldn't say that natural mapping is bad, and honestly, should level design be at the forefront of ones mind when making a map, it should be able to surpass GF design. In any type of map design, if one doesn't consider level design, of course the map will be bad, but that goes without saying.
I agree, but the "rules" of the natural mapping style, particularly that which is perpetuated by some of the old mapping tutorials and such, lends itself more to a random, squiggly pattern of drawing in order to make something look more natural. One of the mantras repeated for that style is to avoid squares at all costs, when squares are one of the best ways to guide a player through a map along with things like highlighted paths etc.

Quote originally posted by Sub Phantom:
does any one know any good hacks
Yes. Azure Horizons, Sienna, rijonAdventures, Liquid Ocean, YAFRH, Blaze Black / Volt White and their sequel, and Platinum Red and Blue are the best hacks around at the moment. Try them out (for the ones with releases)! You could also check out the Pokémon Vega series, though they are in Japanese.

Speaking of which, how many of you have played Vega or its sequels? They're really great in emulating the Gen 3 feel while still being new (well, as new as a ROM hack of Pokemon gets) games.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (12:37 PM).
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I just google searched Vega and GOD do those sprites look good. It's funny, because I was playing Touhoumon one day and thought to myself, "There would probably be more high quality hacks if Pokemon hacking was bigger in Japan". Doujin/fan works that come out of Japan seem to support that idea, often being a rather high quality (In the case of Pokemon hacks, Touhoumon spriting or the script work in Touhou Gensokyo Scenario are good examples...then again, Touhou fans are crazy, so this is to be expected).

Yeah, I'm gonna take a look at Vega, what I've seen so far has me blown away.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (12:41 PM).
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Quote originally posted by machomuu:
I just google searched Vega and GOD do those sprites look good. It's funny, because I was playing Touhoumon one day and thought to myself, "There would probably be more high quality hacks if Pokemon hacking was bigger in Japan". Doujin/fan works that come out of Japan seem to support that idea, often being a rather high quality (In the case of Pokemon hacks, Touhoumon spriting or the script work in Touhou Gensokyo Scenario are good examples...then again, Touhou fans are crazy, so this is to be expected).

Yeah, I'm gonna take a look at Vega, what I've seen so far has me blown away.
It's a solid hack, though some parts are clearly... fan-made. Not that that's a bad thing. They really went all out in some aspects - they completely redid some music, sprites, even the intro Nidoran cutscene, and still manage to make it feel like a Gen 3 hack. It's super impressive. I think Vega is an example of how hacking teams can work, as opposed to what comes from PC's teams.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (12:46 PM).
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Quote originally posted by Spherical Ice:
haha that's good

Anyway, what do you guys think about the dichotomy of "natural" mapping and Game Freak-styled (i mean good lmoa) mapping? In my opinion "natural" maps are just trying to be artistic without considering the principles of level design or navigation, and often results in a mess of trees and bushes and no clear sense of direction.
Depends :< some people take 'natural' too far, definitely, and not only are there trees all over the place but odd grass - some even try to naturally map paths/houses... which doesn't work .

But I have to say, generally, I find square tree blocks an eyesore. There needs to be some variety, something to stop it becoming a carpet of perfectly organised trees, without leaving dozens of tiny, pointless indents.

All about balance ><. o/
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (01:09 PM).
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Quote originally posted by Spherical Ice:
I think Vega is an example of how hacking teams can work, as opposed to what comes from PC's teams.
I think that a big part of the problem is that PC's teams are too bloated. Now, this is just coming from my experience when I hacked avidly in 2008 and a few years after that, so I can't say whether this is a contemporary view, only having just rejoined the hacking part of the forum, but often times it would work like this: A person comes up with an idea and posts it. They then would go on to recruit members that suited the needs the creator himself/herself didn't cover (usually more than needed), often without asking for work experience or any other kind of information, and then they would recruit those members (and about 20+ beta testers).

The problem often came when the members that offered themselves weren't up to par, wouldn't do work assigned on time, or wouldn't even keep in contact. Often times, even when work did get done, there would be organizational issues and disputes over who does what.This usually lead to massive hiatus' and, in the end, inevitable downfalls.

That's why it does relieve me a bit to see these hacks that have smaller manageable teams of versatile members. Back in the day, you would never see so many hacks to have progressed as far as they have, but some of these hacks have even managed to reach near completion with one-man teams.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (01:30 PM).
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Quote originally posted by Shinx:
Welcome to a new era! An era of inclusion and gratitude. How has everyone's days been?
I have been, good rom hacking and stuff

Quote originally posted by Spherical Ice:
haha that's good

Anyway, what do you guys think about the dichotomy of "natural" mapping and Game Freak-styled (i mean good lmoa) mapping? In my opinion "natural" maps are just trying to be artistic without considering the principles of level design or navigation, and often results in a mess of trees and bushes and no clear sense of direction.
I like natural maps better, not Gamefreak's square and un natural maps. I have made square maps though lol :p
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (02:21 PM).
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In my opinion, "natural" maps look terrible with third generation graphics and GameFreak is doing it right. Sure, the maps in FR/LG really aren't that great and they look too square, but that's because they were copying the Gameboy games, even though they could have made more changes like they did with Johto and Kanto in HeartGold and SoulSilver. But most of the maps in R/S/E are just beautiful. They're utilising the graphics exactly how they should be, focusing more on playability instead of going for a natural look.

This "natural" style of mapping used to be common in hacks at one point, but I don't see many around nowadays, which I think is a good thing. As Magic said, it's all about balance, but I'd rather a map in a pokémon game be square and playable rather than look natural.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (03:02 PM).
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...What happened to Emulation? xD

Quote originally posted by Spherical Ice:
It's a solid hack, though some parts are clearly... fan-made. Not that that's a bad thing. They really went all out in some aspects - they completely redid some music, sprites, even the intro Nidoran cutscene, and still manage to make it feel like a Gen 3 hack. It's super impressive. I think Vega is an example of how hacking teams can work, as opposed to what comes from PC's teams.
Do you know if there is a translation of the hack?


My opinion of mapping styles however is to map in whatever style is comfortable to you. As long as they aren't bad, for example, has errors everywhere, grass everywhere in towns, movement errors, all the really bad glaring stuff, its good. You see a hack is also a game in its own right. As long as the gameplay is good, a hack or game should never really rely on mapping (unless it's like a maze game or something along those lines) and focus more on the gameplay itself. Which brings me to ask a question.

What makes a game or hack good in your eyes? Does it have to have beautiful graphics? Does it need a bunch of gimicky features? Does it have a very good storyline?
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (04:07 PM).
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Quote:
Do you know if there is a translation of the hack?
I did a really hacky partial one a while back that handles move and item names, making the battles playable but not doing much to the overworld. I'd link it but I'm pretty sure it's against Pokecommunity's rules due to lack of permission so I'll just direct you to Google. Fair warning if you try the hack- the difficulty curve is one of the more flagrantly fan-made parts of it.

With regards to mapping: I'm going to echo everyone here and say that obstructive natural mapping isn't worth your time. If you really wanna avoid squares go ahead, but make sure you're not making things annoying for people who just want to move on.
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (08:08 PM).
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So on the topic of mapping, I'm just going to say this: I never saw the value of natural mapping. Let's be honest, we're dealing with video games here, not realistic wilderness. To me, squarish Gamefreak style maps have a certain charm to them, probably because I'm used to the squarish maps R/S/E employs (which are pretty good, imo). I'm not saying everything should be squarish and straight, but I think random grass/tree placement just for the sake of being natural just looks weird.

And to answer Tcoppy's question, I don't care about graphics, or gimmicky extras in a game/hack. I just need the core materials: gameplay and plot. Graphics don't do much to a game with a fanfiction plot a 3 year old can write, and if I'm required to grind a lot in the grass to satisfy the level curve, adios game. That's one of the reasons why I couldn't play Dark Rising to the end. (No offense DRG, I just couldn't tolerate the level curve. Too much grinding for me. Nothing against you personally. If you're even reading this that is >.>)
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Old May 2nd, 2014 (08:34 PM).
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Quote originally posted by Spherical Ice:
Speaking of which, how many of you have played Vega or its sequels?
...wait...
Vega has a sequel?! o.0
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Old May 3rd, 2014 (12:30 AM).
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Is it bad I've never played Vega? Please don't hurt me
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Old May 3rd, 2014 (01:08 AM).
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Quote originally posted by destinedjagold:
...wait...
Vega has a sequel?! o.0
I believe they're on a long hiatus but I think they're called Procyon and Deneb.
Quote originally posted by Shinx:
Is it bad I've never played Vega? Please don't hurt me
I think you should check it out if only for how impressive the extent at which they changed so many aspects of the game is.
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Old May 3rd, 2014 (01:21 AM).
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When I find the time I guess I'll have to try it out. It's difficult because I'm a bit disillusioned with the Pokémon franchise and get bored playing Pokémon very easily.
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Old May 3rd, 2014 (07:46 AM).
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I personally think a mix of a natural and a GameFreak-playable mapping style works the best for me, but honestly I just test a lot and edit the map accordingly without any set rule. [/mapping]

Regarding the scale of custom regions in hacks, do you guys have a basic idea of how many towns, cities, routes etc. are going to be in your region right at the beginning or do you just create map for map without really planning anything in advance? I'm wondering if the former would really pay off in the long run.
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