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961  General Boards / Mapping Tips/Guides / RE: Autovgmapstitcher on: June 17, 2007, 02:44:15 PM
Yes, for the first try it assumes the images are absolutely in the same place and tries ever-increasing distances from that point. I just modified it to assume the same movement as there was between the previous image pair (one of my speed-up ideas) and sure enough, it sped it up a lot. This might then be OK for less high-frame-rate, but still regular, screenshots. Doing it for human-targeted screenshots would be a lot harder.
962  General Boards / Mapping Tips/Guides / Screenshot Autostitcher on: June 17, 2007, 02:15:48 PM
Edit: newest version lives here:


Here's a little something I spent a couple of hours (and then some) on this Sunday evening. It's a program that auto-stitches screenshots together. It's designed for high-frame-rate screenshots. I used the "screen shot each frame" feature in Gens to get the images, but other emulators can probably do something similar.

It's horribly slow, by the way. It took about 20 minutes to stitch 1300 images here. I still have a few ideas for speeding it up. I'll release an executable sometime this week if I get it in a user-friendlier state.



<img src="" width="1199" height="1105" alt="User posted image" />

I also need to think of a better name for it.
963  General Boards / Maps In Progress / Super Boy II (SMS) on: June 15, 2007, 02:24:53 AM
Being a port from the MSX, it uses the SMS's SG-1000 compatibility video mode, which is the same as a Colecovision (ie. pretty lame).
964  General Boards / Maps In Progress / RE: Super Boy II (SMS) on: June 13, 2007, 01:07:58 PM
Yes, the Korean Master System conversion of an MSX rip-off of a fairly well-known little platform game from Japan.

Just stage 1-1 for now, I don't know if I can bear to play much more of it.
965  General Boards / Map Requests / RE: Micro Machines V3 (Game Boy Color) on: June 13, 2007, 05:50:45 AM
Notes from mapping the SMS version:

In 2-player mode you can skip arbitrary lengths of track so long as you drive both cars and keep them both onscreen and avoid the various instant-death zones.

For the SMS version (based on the NES version) the game is based on a relatively small number of 96x96 blocks. Once you get them defined it can be a simple matter to construct the game from those. On the other hand, the 16-bit versions are likely to have more variation and bigger maps. Raw Candy seems likely to work well on memory dumps (and by extension savestates). I just copy/pasted in an image editor.

After you die, the screen scrolls back to the last valid track position. Careful manoeuvring can make sure this will pass over otherwise inaccessible areas of the map, eg. discontinuities protected by instant-death zones.

In the end, I figured out a hack sufficient to allow me to cause the game to go into an infinite scrolling mode when I pressed pause. Thanks to the world wrapping toroidally (top<->bottom, left<->right) this allowed me to map out some of the totally inaccessible parts like the level borders. A proper scroll-control hack would be better, but the game is a complete nightmare of nonsensical-looking code and almost impossible to hack sensibly.
966  General Boards / Maps In Progress / RE: Chuck Rock (SMS), Cool Spot (SMS) on: June 03, 2007, 12:01:11 PM
967  General Boards / Maps In Progress / RE: Chuck Rock (SMS), Cool Spot (SMS) on: June 01, 2007, 04:05:20 PM
Cool Spot stage 1: Shell Shock

This game is a total nightmare to map, since I'm anal about including enemies.
968  General Boards / Maps In Progress / Ghouls'n Ghosts (SMS) on: May 31, 2007, 12:03:47 AM
I'd forgotten about this one...
969  General Boards / Maps In Progress / RE: Chuck Rock (SMS), Cool Spot (SMS) on: May 31, 2007, 12:01:26 AM
Chuck Rock level 1:

970  General Boards / Map Gab / RE: Vampire (Sega Master System) on: May 29, 2007, 06:50:27 AM
The SMS version only exists as Master of Darkness in the wild; the Vampire ROM seems to be a prototype. On the Game Gear it was released as "In the Wake of Vampire" in Japan and "Master of Darkness" in Europe. I don't know if the levels are the same as the SMS version.
971  General Boards / Maps In Progress / RE: Chuck Rock (SMS), Cool Spot (SMS) on: May 29, 2007, 06:35:49 AM
SMS Sonic 1 is a great game, the later ones are probably best avoided IMO (although some would disagree). Nostalgia is a major factor here, the vast majority of games I map are games I've played through many times, on a real console, in my mis-spent youth. That's why I like to map the lame SMS ports rather than the originals - not so much "why the hell did I map *that* crap!?" as "someone will have valid reason to map the original and mine will become an ignored footnote, yet I don't care".

Others, like the Wonder Boy games and Sonic 1 8-bit, are really just great 8-bit design, something rather lacking as it was a generation that went from small, sparse levels up to backports of the big-money 16-bit titles of the 90s and missed out on having many big-money well-designed "proper" efforts in the middle.

I did spend a few hours trying to hack Sonic 2 similarly but it didn't come to anything much. These kinds of games really benefit from hacks to free-scroll the camera. I may try another hack to give infinite rocket sneakers and then try for a no-clipping mode. Having Sonic moving that fast will make mapping something of a challenge, of course...
972  General Boards / Maps In Progress / Chuck Rock (SMS), Cool Spot (SMS) on: May 29, 2007, 03:20:57 AM
I have no idea why I'm choosing to map these lame ports, but I've done a level or two in each.

One thing that may be of interest to some is news that the recent release of Meka (SMS/GG/etc emulator) has a new feature for map-making that I suggested to the author. When enabled, "crop and align screenshots" will trim down any screenshot you take so it's aligned with the video hardware's underlying 8x8 pixel grid - basically, trimming off any half-visible tiles. Since I use Paint Shop Pro set to snap to an 8x8 pixel grid when mapping, this makes map-making roughly 64 times easier because it's that much easier to line the screenshots up perfectly (off-by-one errors are probably my biggest problem when mapping).
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