While names have been provided for convenience, all judging was done blind. This HTML file is just an enhanced, better looking version of the original txt version.
#1 Waltz of the Yoshis by Klug
It's an interesting idea to let the player choose their own way in a level like
that, but for the purposes of judging, it just means I get to beat it four
times. Still, not a bad concept. I assumed the message box was telling me that
the level would be the same each time, except for adding a new Yoshi. Glad I
Anyway, each of the sublevels was fine on its own. Given the length of them,
it might have been smarter to make it a Yoshi gauntlet level rather than
choosing which one to beat. I like how you had mandatory use of the Yellow and
Blue Yoshi's powers in their levels, but the Green and Red Yoshis didn't really
get much for being there. The ice blocks don't melt under a Red Yoshi
fireball? Really? Not blaming you for that one, but it's a shame.
As it stands, there are four pretty pleasant romp levels here. Wish you'd used
more of the resources in the baserom, because it felt pretty vanilla, in both
gameplay and aesthetics.
#2 Conveyor Castle by DetectiveZvarri
Aggressively purple castle. This is a pretty decent level. It's a bit on the
short and easy side, but there's nothing wrong with that. It definitely has
conveyors, and the arrows were a nice signaling touch. However, I do have a bit
of a problem with the layer-2 sections. In more than a few spots, there's no
indication that there's a conveyor hidden under the Grape Fanta, so it's hard
to read what to do. Some coins or something would have helped.
The other big issue I have is the Boos. There's no reason to ever jump over
the pencils. Ever. You've got the infinite block spawner next to you at spawn,
so you just jump rope the flames. It's...just kinda there.
#3 Mario in the castle by Spade_Magnes
I'm gunna be honest, the palette does not work for me. It reminds me of some
unpleasant times I've had food poisoning, honestly.
That being said, the level itself is actually pretty fun. The first third
isn't too interesting, but the addition of the Mario 1 elevator platforms made
the next two sections. The combo of note blocks and spikes works okay, but the
platforms took it to the next level. I'm not really sure the tracker sumo bro
added too much pressure to the level. It's an odd choice, and I don't think it
worked with your level design. There's very few places you have to stop, so
it's pretty easy to avoid the fire by just running forward. I think you'd need
some switchbacks or maybe some black snake timers or something to make it a
real threat. Pretty perfect length for what the level is.
#4 Unidimensional by Samie Zuccati
Gotta be honest. The title screen may be trolly, but I agree with it. This level
has a Kaizo nature, so all the scores are kinda dependent on if we disqualify
it or not.
That being said, the setups are clever. The name is apropos. You've used the
vertical wrap well for some of your setups. The leniency it provides for the
first donut platform is pretty clever. Not so sure about the bubble setup
I've got some issues with how the aesthetics inform the player. The death blocks
in one of the last obstacles are really hard to see against the dark
background, and given all the kaizo block squares, blend in well. All of the
other indicators are pretty well done, so it does seem a bit out of place.
The troll at the end was pretty funny. Definitely a reversal.
This is the only level whose creator I'm gunna guess. About 80% sure this is
Zuccati, though I wasn't at the time of playing.
#5 cloudtop cruise by Boosius
There's a lot to like about this level, so it's kinda a shame it's so short.
Even with how short it is, the level hands out mushrooms like mushroom
flavored candy. There's scarcely an obstacle that goes by that doesn't end in
a mushroom in the first half. It's not a too challenging level, and I'm not
really sure the conveyors added much to it. Would have liked to have seen
bridge building on screen first, before it happening far to the right, but
whatever. We learned why we're doing it.
The second half has fantastic aesthetics. From the inverted looking quicksand to
the weird icey cactuses in the background. Not sure why you told us to hit
five arrow blocks when there are exactly five blocks in that section...and
you've already shown us the gimmick in the first half. Kinda wish it'd been a
trap. If you hit all six or something, you can't proceed. Or you gave us seven
blocks...but only needed five so we could pick and choose which ones to do.
Dunno. Feels like you didn't really finish exploring the idea. What's here is
nice...but a third section might've helped.
#6 Stack Up! by EmilyEmmi
Once again, puzzles. I still like puzzles. This is the first level in the set
that I've seen that uses the arrow blocks in interesting and creative ways.
There's a nice juxtaposition between the first half's heavier emphasis on
platforming--especially the block snake section--and the more sedate puzzle
solving of the second half.
The thing that gets me here if that you've got a really good puzzle
difficulty ramp up/mechanic introduction path here. That is to say, there was
never part of the level where I needed to understand an interaction before it
was introduced. Really good design. Wish there'd been one last larger puzzle
that culminated all we've learned, but even so, this is a really good entry.
#7 Platform Company by Daizo Dee Von and Jonah_
Oh, that lore. Are you part of the Mario LDC Expanded Universe? We'll find out
later, I guess.
I'm a big fan of levels that reveal their gimmick up front so you can learn it
before the frantic platforming starting, and this delivers on that front. The
setups were mostly enjoyable, but I had some reservations about the branching
paths. They really didn't add much, given how quickly they reconverged. It
basically became a non-choice once I knew which one suited me. Longer,
separate sections could have been interesting, but do they suit a level design
contest? I'm not sure.
The Boss Bass part is probably the most memorable part. Kinda wished that
hadn't been something akin to a midway troll, but it was still cute.
Good music choices. Solid factory feel.
#8 Bubbly Beach by Zavok and N450
Lovely aesthetics. While thematic, I'm not sure the Mad Sun really added
anything to the level except waiting. Lots and lots of waiting. Was kinda
hoping the Happy Moon would make a last minute appearance, but alas.
Anyway, there's some things I really like about this level. You've added some
fun side obstacles to get the dragon coins. Always appreciate that. The first
section--and most of the second--felt pretty fair and original. But then the
double Spinys on bounce blocks start. For one, it's somewhat spawn dependent
on how you scroll them onto the screen, which can change the timing
drastically. Given you use this obstacle like...six times in the level, it
gets old fast. So did the fast throwing hammer bros. I suspect that you might not
have had outside people test your level...given how some of the setups feel.
All in all, it's not bad, but I didn't have a good time.
#9 OFF-n'-ON Again by J2DaBibbles
(Because of hard drive failure, the initial notes for this level were lost)
Okay, this is something. The single screen challenge room is a pretty classic
idea, and you're working in that medium here, but it kinda feels like you
either wanted to buck the trends a bit or didn't understand some of the things
that make that medium work. You've decided to have checkpoints after every
pair or rooms, which can work, but often times, the second in the pair ends up
killing you within a few seconds of inaction. After spending a while beating a
section, it kinda sucks to get killed quickly without really getting a grip on
what's even happening and get punted back a screen. This is the biggest issue
with your level.
That being said, some of the screens are actually pretty fun. While the
constant shaking gets old fast, the timed on/off concept is a good one and
you've managed to integrate it into a lot of solid puzzles. The Boo Laser room
was pretty well done. The Bowling Ball/Punch Glove room was another standout,
as was the elevator action level afterwards. My biggest issue was the final
pair of rooms. Having to wait a while for Thwamps to line up and then get into
a room where any sort of misstep is death is just kinda mean. That very last
room skirts close to Kaizo in what's expected of the player. The dark room
pair near the beginning was another weird choice, since is just makes it harder
to see what we're trying to do...in an area where you need to quickly figure
out what you're trying to do.
Anyway, I think you've got some good ideas, but probably need more
#10 [Demo]Kronos Island by Somebody for sure
Interesting level. At first I wasn't sure if it wasn't a shitpost or not, but
it's definitely a level... Having not played Sonic Frontiers yet, the
reference is a bit lost on me, but I did like having to search out the dragon
coins and the puzzles--at least the few that were puzzles--were pleasant. The
graphics are kinda a mess, but maybe that's accurate to the Sonic game. Hard
to say. In the end, it felt a little aimless? Maybe a message at the start or
in the cave to convey what we were supposed to do. Cool concept, but not sure
it was a good one to do for this contest.
#11 Haunted Jungle by mariosr
Love the green Boos. They go well with the Mario 3 grasslandish aesthetics.
Really good usage of the nonsolid on/off switches in conjunction with the
Floor Boos. You've come up with some really pleasant setups. The whole thing
flows well, and despite the multiple midways, it's all seemingly done on a
single level, which is pretty cool. Gives a good sense of progress when you're
always headed up. If I came across this when moderating a standard hack, I'd
be pretty dang happy with it. The only things that minorly detract from it a bit are
the lack of visibility when riding the bowling balls downward, and that seeing
that much Stretch gets a little old, but again, minor issues.
#12 Before I Forget by mish1
Good call on the Mario 3 fortress aesthetic. It works well with the sprites
and gameplay concept you've chosen. This level can feel pretty claustrophobic
at times. Thanks to the large number of powerups, this isn't much of an issue.
I wonder if those are just kinda a bandaid over the design. I get the
feeling you might have wanted players to go around the circle a bit with, with the
combination of accordion munchers and clocky fire bars, but the mushrooms
negate this idea. The rest of the first section is just kinda waiting for
cycles to line up. It's pleasant enough.
The autoscroller is odd. It's very unforgiving it spots because you need to be
more to the right than you might expect at certain times. The double accordion
Mucher setup is pretty cruel, because there is no second chance, which is
kinda odd compared to the rest of the level. I'm not sure those were a good
fit. I do like the use of the ball throwing Bros. Would have liked to have
seen some jump forced off a ball or something, but their inclusion was kinda
Finally, the Boos is just kinda there. Dunno if you ran out of time, but it
feels unfinished. The correct solution is to just stand on the right side of
the screen where there's a safe spot. There's not much else to it.
#13 Haywires by FrozenQuills
Gotta go fast.
I really shouldn't like this level. Periodic motion isn't one of my favorite
mechanics, but honestly, this works. It works really well. Combining fast,
effectively falling, sprites with the respawn is quite clever. There's a good
cadence to the number and difficulty of the obstacles, culminating in final
hammer bro drop that had me feeling like I was seeing double. Every single
thing in this level follows the theming. Every single thing I needed to
know--minus the moon puzzle tech, whatever that was--was taught to me in
advance of needing it in the actual level. Felt very much like a Sickos level,
in all the good ways.
#14 Sky Plains by Enan63
Man, I wanna like this so much. There's a lot of good ideas, even with some of
the repeated setups. The way each section builds upon the last one is a solid,
puzzly concept. The second section was a lot like the first, but with more
Thwomps added in, again building on the setups and ideas from before.
Deaths Lots! Thanks Comcast!
Then there's the autoscroller. Solving a puzzle once makes you feel clever.
Solving a puzzle 20 times makes you feel silly. Really wished you'd placed a
midway before the autoscroller. A lot of how I feel about this level stems
from that one omission. Facing a kinda trolly end of level obstacle at the end
of all that felt a little mean.
That said, the sparkies on conveyors are really cool and I'd've loved to have seen a
non-autoscroller section dedicated to them. Feels like there'd be some cool
setups even without the scroller forcing you. Maybe with blocksnake waiting
sections or something. Feels like a missed opportunity. Still had fun, but it
was definitely tempered.
#15 World Yoshi-4 by CircleFriendo
A strong homage to SMB1's castle levels...down to the random spawning flames
and Bowser cosplaying a Touhou boss. Honestly, without the variety of Bros in
the level, I'd buy this was ported over from Lost Levels. It's a fun,
but appropriately NES sized castle...which is to say it's a bit short. What's
here is good, but it probably needed a second section or something.
#16 Fire Bar Furnace by JupiHornet
Solid autoscroller. Good use of the firebars to force certain kinds of
movement. Not a lot of down time, but that's a really good thing for an
autoscroller. Checkpoints were well placed. Good choice in sprites. Thwomps
are always fun. The fakeout Thwomp second to last in the level was a bit odd,
but other than that, you had a consistent design language.
#17 Lumber Exchange by Sixcorby
Damn good level. You picked stacks and found interesting setups to make with
them, not just for the sake of stacking things. Really loved the small
challenge rooms on the way. Seems reminiscent of a VLDC13 level. Wonder if it's
the same hacker.
Honestly, I would have loved to have seen more
done with the stacked on key sprite. Really fun concept, that. Had a little
trouble with some sprite spawns near the end of the second part, but it mostly
resolved itself. Finishing the level with the classic layer 2 upward scrolling
was a little out of place, but still a fine ending.
#18 Bro, It's Hot Bro by Faro
Bro, it's good bro. It's a shame you didn't have a second half, because what's
here is pretty fun. You've used like...all of the differing bros as far as I
can tell. And the setups for each obstacle were readable and reasonable.
Really, I just wish there was the second half. Ends too soon.
Just like this
The plot was enjoyably silly.
#19 Pipe Treeway by Dispace
This is a weird one. It's very much a key and lock puzzle level al'la old
school games had, like Commander Keen or Doom, but it's puzzles are somewhat
confounded by odd choices. Like having a lot of paths backward in the level. I
kept expecting that I'd need to backtrack, but never did.
The reset pipe right after the midway caused the greatest confusion, since you
can dupe a key that way. I started wondering if there was a giant brained
puzzle about, but no, just a game of hide and seek, often with weird red
herrings like the block ladder near the munchers at the end of the platform
ride. Some major graphical issue with the Sumo Bro flames. They frequently
were invisible. Makes them hard to avoid.
Anyway, I still kinda like this puzzlely level, but it's clear it could've
used some more polish...and no floating munchers.
#20 Laboratory of Trial by yoshi9429
Challenge rooms. Not a bad concept. Given how short they actually are, I don't
blame you for having checkpoints every four rooms. I have some reservations
about the powerup removers not removing the boxed items, but whatever. Most of
the rooms are pretty much and have clear solutions, though I think you've got
a little too much block into wall interactions. I'd've liked to have seen some
more locks and doors or maybe having to do a second lap of the room for
variety. The Boos was a little disappointing. I don't think you needed the
explanation in front of the door, and it definitely took something away from
the fight. It's a simple enough timing puzzle that it really didn't need and
preamble. But it was also pretty anticlimactic. Still, I did have fun.
#21 Jardin des Pillules (Garden of Pills) by Burning Loaf and bebn legg
I kept thinking I could jump on the background blocks, which got kinda
annoying. Otherwise, the level looks really pretty. Clever combination of
Mario 3 and SMW aesthetics. Decent music choice. The pipe houses are cute.
You got a theme and you stuck with it. Various sorts of beatles, often on
wires and moving platforms. Pretty much all of it felt fair, and with the
exception of a few cheesy spots, it all worked. I definitely had some oddness
with the doors vs midway spawns, but they were minimal issues.
The idea of switch mazes to make the level easier/harder is clever. Not sure
it ended up mattering all that much, but that's definitely an idea to play
with. Also, loved the variety of line-guide shapes you used.
Yeah, pretty fine level.
#22 Mad Mechanism by NopeContest
Nice factory aesthetics. Music goes well with it. And it keeps the important
graphics from blending into it, namely the Snifit bullets.
Speaking of, the Snifits felt oddly out of place in a level like this. I'm
not sure if I'm just inexperienced with the sprite, but they
felt...inconsistent. Like, when doing a heavy setup based level like this, you
expect to do the same things and have the same results...and the Snifit
bullets never seemed to spawn the same way twice. This generally diminished my
enjoyment of the level.
There's a lot to like here. Many of the setups are clever and have clear ways
of dealing with them. The three jumping saws right after the first (?) midway
for one, but others were just strange. Like the upward Thwomp/Snifit near the
very end. Felt rough.
#23 Big Balls by snoruntpyro
The first and second halves almost feel disconnected. The second half has a
lot of rather precise setups with often little warning of what you'll need to
do and little recourse to reset it if you guess wrong. There's also a lot of
issues with sprite spawning due to the leftward nature of the level.
But honestly, I still had fun. Just kinda wished you'd thrown in a second
midway...or kept the difficulty more consistent. The concept was pretty well
executed and kept me laughing pretty well through the first half. Some combo
of aquatic animals and balls is just kinda funny.
Fine music choice. A good nice mix of SMB3 and SMW aesthetics.
#24 Magic Ride Mayhem by RussianMan
Is this Kaizo? Dunno. Maybe.
This reminds me of Glitchcat's Return to Subcon, where the level design is
hard, but you get one free hit where you choose, which dampens the difficulty
somewhat. I had fun, but not sure about this one. Some leniency in the setups
would have made this a better BLDC level, but I'm not sure that would have made
it a better overall level.
That said, it's a cool concept. A lot of the setups are creative and the shell
juggling stuff in the last third feels great when you pull it off. You
explored the moving platform with on/off switches mechanic well. And definitely
stuck to a small, but reasonable sprite set. Never quite figured out the
bubbled goomba/fish jump in the first section, but the mushroom makes up for
it. It's nice that you can choose one obstacle or take a hit, and I definitely
did on purpose in the third section. The jump off the Banzai Bill near the
forbidden off switches felt pretty tight. Also not sure about that one.
#25 1 2 3 4 Go roKu by wir4lor
There's a lot to like here, but it's kinda muddled with your design choices.
The first half is pretty reasonable. Aside from the annoyance of the snowball
bros. Vertical levels are fun, but your level suffers from poor visibility a
in a lot of the sections. The disco shell part where you ride a donut up?
Yeah, you can end up inside a disco shell you just can't see coming. Same for
the blind jump left across right past the first snow bro.
The second half is mazes, but like, it'd've been nice to have a midway before
the coin maze. Namely because it's really easy to screw that one up and have
to go back to the start. Run the muncher maze. Pray that you don't get frozen.
It just adds a lot of tedium. There are individual parts here that are cool
and would have been better to expand upon in a single level, rather than the
variety you've shown here. A level of coin mazes could have been cool. A level
of muncher runs could have been cool. A level of platform elevators could have
been cool, but mashed together this way, it just feels disjointed.
#26 Geysers of life by jirok1
Gotta say, this is definitely original! Maybe a little reminiscent the Mario 3
vs mode where a bunch of coins and fireballs shoot out of a pipe, but even
then still pretty fresh. Kinda wonder how the design process went. Did you
make the rooms then the sprite explosion or choose the sprites and then layout
the room to make it work? Either way, this felt chaotic in a good way. Like
level design by throwing paint through a jet engine and framing the result.
Probably would have liked another room or two, but it's still a good entry.
#27 Dirty Sewer by Hayashi Neru
Honestly, there's a lot I like about this level. Especially the latter half.
It really felt like you'd gotten your ideas in a row by the time we hit the
last roulette block, but it just kinda...ends. Funny bug
happens if you press down on the final pipe, but I'm not gunna hold it against
you. Having the first section be very rompy before setting yourself up as a
setup level isn't always the best idea, but it felt really organic in this
case. Just wish you'd found that last gear sooner and worked in that mode.
The Thwomp setup near the end is pretty cute, till you look at it a bit more
closely. Feels like a puzzle, but it's just hitting the two blocks.
#28 Goombud Solar Deser[t] by Flaming Hot Toons
Mad Sun is kinda fun to see, but this really feels like a first venture into
using Lunar Magic. The level itself is kinda inoffensive, but it's not really
that interesting. There's a little weirdness with how you've made a level with
the Mad Sun....and enabled upward scrolling so the whole thing feels kinda
janky. No idea how that Banzai Bill is supposed to be dangerous. It's just
kinda there. And then there are only three dragon coins and the level just
ends. Definitely needed more.
#29 Pots 'N Panic by Ruberjig
Interesting idea with the plot...not sure it really paid off. The multiple
rooms going up a tower was kinda a fun idea, though the interstitials felt a
little odd, give how every sublevel also has you going up a lot more than
Each of the sub sections were pretty fine romps. The standout, though maybe not for
good reasons, was the pick a jar/reset door set of rooms. Just found that odd.
Not sure why you'd need to reset at all.
The payoff with the P-Switch was kinda cute...but then the boss was kinda a
confusing mess. The Sledge Bro's sprite kinda glitched out and the correct
thing to do was really unobvious. Once I saw the Koopas, it seemed kinda
random how many Koopas spawned. There, however, was a well placed reset door,
so real harm done...but it definitely left an odd taste in my mouth.
#30 Autumn Park by AnEvilGhost and Supreme
Excellent aesthetics. Only issue I had was that the fireballs were invisible
against parts of the sunset gradient, but it's a small thing. The visuals and
the audio fit well together, and I loved the dilapidated slide and swing.
Really gave the feeling of fall.
On the level front, it's an oddly mixed level. It's got a very rompy, with
some small setups start, and then goes into puzzles. And I love puzzles. Key
and lock puzzles worked well. None were too onerous, and having the dragon
coins just out of reach where you couldn't always see the extra bit of puzzle
was a little mean, but not insurmountable.
The ending was perfect. Would definitely recommend this one.
#31 Starry Skies Castle by Littleminer64
Liked the choice of Galaxy music with the starry castle motif. Nice touch.
Thwomps and bowling balls are a classic combo. I found a most of the obstacles
to be reasonable, but every once in a while--like the Banzai Bill and fire bar
bit--I found myself wondering if there were playtesters outside of the level
creator. Something about how that setup worked struck me that the level maker
just found a route that worked and stuck with it, which made the spawns
consistent for them, but not very lenient. Also, that firebar in the vertical
section that you can't see before you jump into it if you choose the right
side was a bit mean. Really dug that section though. Some fun setups with the
donut platforms and maces in there. The midway at the end was in an odd spot.
Would have been nice to avoid the level load.
Really, I mostly enjoyed the level, but it had some rough edges that testing
could have ironed out.
#32 Hydrophobic Denim by margot and HamOfJustice
Sprite water's a fun concept and you've explored it well here.
I always appreciate Dragon coins that require a little creativity to get,
rather than just serving as mile markers, and in the first section, you
deliver three clever, but purely optional little setups to acquire the coins.
Lots of cute setups on the way to the keyhole. The falling spikes waiting
section and the previewed fish room with the key definitely stand out.
Then, there's a vertical wrap section. A quick move to a one screen puzzles
style, which just kinda works. Another clever preview section with the falling
spikes part, and another clever
Finally, the autoscroller with the window of un-water. It's so bizarre. We're
getting sprites moving in ways that they just don't usually move. It's
unnerving, but it works well. Some of the parabolic trajectories take a bit to
get used to, but the setups are worth it. Also, love the underwater pyramid at
the end. This is a level that could have worn out its welcome, but well placed
checkpoints and smart variations on the theme kept it fresh throughout.
Also awesome. Go play it.
#33 The Small Sky by Ascaska
This is a very middle of the road level. If it was in a standard hack, this'd
be a fine level near the beginning of the hack. Not to say that's a bad thing,
but it's just kinda fine. The sprite choices are a bit odd and I felt a good
chunk of the middle section was designed by randomly drawing cement blocks on
the screen and working around them. Not sure what the sprite bounce blocks
were supposed to add, but I did enjoy making the goomba get stuck. I did like
the little dragon coin puzzle in the pipe.
#34 Niagara's Locksmith by OEO6
I love puzzles. This level has good puzzles. Every puzzle made sense and at no
time did it feel insurmountable. The key chase away from the Boss Bass was a
cute touch, and the latter half's vertical sections used the world wrap in a
very satisfying way. There wasn't a part where I wasn't having fun.
The transparent spikes in the moon room and the blue ones in the second room were
really hard to see against the background. Actually detracts from understanding
the puzzles, where everywhere else, you're quite clear. Except that weird
looking 1f0 for the Dino Rino bit.
The Boo fight was also clever. Took me a minute, but very good use of the
stacking sprites and the slight bounce when an object comes out of a block.
#35 Muncher Cruncher by Theopold
The plot is cute, but the level itself is pretty short. You've got a puzzle in
mind and it's a fine puzzle, and repetition on a theme with minor variations
can be a kinda fun puzzle, but ultimately, it's just not very much. You hit
all the block and run up the wall. Maybe a troll block or some sort of
ordering to the hitting of those blocks could have been fun.
The boss is interesting. There's very little danger with the ceiling lowering
and the bombs spawn consistently. It's a nice set piece and I wonder if it's
where the bulk of your time was spent.
The range indicators on the muncher accordions were a nice touch
#36 10-Pin Monocle by GbreezeSunset
Not sure how to do aesthetics on a blindingly white level...that may have to be
blindingly white for gameplay reasons...
That being said, I had a grand old time. This is a really cute gimmick and
it's used to the fullest. The first room teaches you how it works, the second
room develops it with some circular motion and then you get your very own
balloon! The extra dragon coin puzzles were cute too.
Finally, the autoscroller was also pretty fun. Some elements of
memorization...but even then, almost everything was reactable. The final troll
was icing on the cake. Absolutely stellar level. If this doesn't win something, gunna
flag it as a favorite.
#37 Be Loved, Don't Cry by Azula16
Started really strong with the Hammer Bro/platform combo, but kinda petered
out from there. This level has some identity issues where the start feels like
it's gunna be more setup based/kaizo touched, maybe, but the then it leans
really heavily into kinda empty line rider parts. Not to say those are a bad
choice, but compared to the start they're...just there. It's not bad, but I
definitely feel like this level has a lot of ideas, but doesn't end up
exploring them well. The weirdly timed maces got me prepared for all kinds of
nonsense...and then it just played it straight. Like some sort of anti-troll.
Not a bad level...just kinda confused.
#38 Starsmagoric by Zaroio
This level is weird. The first half wants to do a switches to make progress
with backtracking kinda thing, which is fine. Except for the invisible floor
near the fire Thwomp. That felt odd. The second half was...kinda there? The
Yoshi flight section started kinda strong, but petered off quick. You also
seemed to have a lot of fun with the slopes...which is great and all. Sliding
across a Batman symbol is kinda funny, but definitely didn't add much. The
Boos was just kinda there. Because of the combination of sprites you chose,
there was a clear place to stand where you couldn't be harmed and just wait
out the timer till the next block. It was probably the weakest section.
#39 Jinxed Jars by GRIMMKIN
Bowling balls in jars. Sums it up, really. This level's got some really fun
stuff, like the Boos, and some not as fun things. Reliance on 1f0 in
combination with the jars was...not great. It's hard to control the exact rate
of movement on the 1f0 tiles, so the upthrow in the middle of the second room
is a bit of a crap shoot if the jar doesn't move fast enough to beat the layer
two scroll. Dunno if a pipe or something between sections could've helped, but
I didn't feel in control of that obstacle even when I got it.
The Boos was definitely a highlight for me. It's s simple enough concept, but
it's fun to execute. Dropping jars on Big Boo is pretty funny.
#40 Quicksand Beach by Green Jerry
It's a fine romp. Unlike some, I still enjoy that port of Door into Summer.
RIP 32x and Sega.
Anyway, it's a decent romp. The infinite spawning throwblocks work well with
the breakable walls, but it got kinda samey by the end. The vertical section
after the midway was a nice break from backtracking to get more blocks to
break more bricks...even if the quicksand and the falling platform don't play
very nice with each other. The boxing gloves were a somewhat odd addition. I
really don't think they added too much to the level. The last one right before
the goal tape was cute though.
#41 Big Small by MarkVD100
Now that's taking a classic concept and running with it! A fun homage to
Mario 3 level 4-6. Concept is a word I'm using too much. Anyway,
this level's very clever. There are some rough bits I didn't care for, but I
did have fun. Biggest issue I had was that there were parts where what you
were supposed to do that weren't really clear. Especially during the small
Mario parts. The reset door in the mole section was odd. I get why it's there
now, but it sure looked like where I needed to go at the time.
The final water part was kinda...annoying. Part of that was I was dumb about the
boss bass, which is definitely my bad, but other sprites were definitely
behaving oddly. Anyway, really solid concept. Kinda wished there was a bit
#42 Green Tower of Boredom by edgar
First, before I say anything else, I'm taking a few points off for the softlock.
The biggest issue I have with this level is that the difficulty is all over
the place, and usually the difficulty is caused by things I find irritating.
Room two of pipe 1 was definitely the worst offender. There were like...5
different cycling obstacles to keep track of with only a small margin of
error for any given one of them. I can track two sources, but everything after
that comes down to luck. On the other side of the curve, you had some puzzle
levels, like the fireball room, which were trivial. The quality and
difficulty seems pretty random.
There were just a lot of rough edges. In the firebar room, the jars kill you
if you're too close to them when you throw them. An extra tile or two of space
would have been nice...but maybe the plan was to force some back and forth
action there? I'm not sure. Similarly, the shell trick I think you needed to
do in the poison mushroom room was fiddly. And extra block of space would have
helped there. Ugh, this all feels too negative. Look, when the level wasn't
tryharding, it had its moments. The first room in pipe 1 was actually kinda
funny, and I enjoyed the more sedate pace of the first two rooms in pipe 2. It
just felt like you had a lot of ideas, but not a lot of focus. Narrowing down
to the more fun rooms would have made this a better entry. Even the Boo Ring
room, which made me groan on entry, was kinda fun in the end.
#43 Quit Following Me!! by MegaMarioMan9
Dang, this is awesome. Love the purple forest aesthetic. Works well with keeping
the background where it needs to be while, because there's a lot of stuff to
focus on in the foreground.
But again, it's puzzles. I like puzzles a lot. And these were some solid
puzzles. I always appreciate a level that's upfront about its gimmicks, and
this one gets right into it with the stalker Koopa. Shows the key block-sprite
interactions in a quick and elegant way.
The first two rooms teach some of the important lessons you need to learn,
things like just how high up a standing up-throw is and key riding. Sets up
the next two rooms well.
I kinda wish the Thwimp section was a little shorter, or at least ended
without such a tight trick. For how long it is and how much waiting it
requires to get the Thwimp to perform its jumps, it drags a bit. Could also be
because I got stuck on a silly obstacle in the middle. Not a huge deal.
The final set puzzles really shine. Managing and juggling the two keys takes
patience and precision, but it never felt insurmountable and solving it all
makes you feel clever, which is kinda the point after all. My only issue--and
this might just be SMW weirdness--is that the keys have a tendency to push
Mario if he's occupying the same space. Dunno if it's intentional, but the
level might be a bit better without that behavior. Again, a minor issue.
This one's awesome Go play it.
#44 Misty Mountaintop by MoxieCat
It kinda feels like a first attempt to make a more Kaizo
colored standard level, but that's not a bad thing. Parts of it were a bit
clunky, in that they didn't give a great amount of time to figure out how
things were going to behave before they'd get you. The Twamp right after one
of the midway is a key example. It's in a location you're likely to jump to,
but hidden off the screen enough to neither be seen nor activate when you walk
There's a lot of waiting for things to line up while swimming in the second
half. Would have liked to have seen some more variety there, at least in terms
of how the swimming worked. All in all, it's a okay level, but it's got some
edges to sand off. It is really pretty though, and the music works really well
with the aesthetics.
#45 Snowy Thwomp Night by h.carrell
This kinda feels like a first attempt at a setup based level. It's not bad
through that lens, but it's also just not much. Very short and few setups.
Some of the ideas were there, like the two stompy thwomps with the fire bar,
but you never really executed upon those ideas to make them more than a minor
impediment. For a rompy level, it's not bad, but it's clear there were higher
What's up with the Thwomp on the boxing glove. Was that anything?
#46 Perilous Pipeline by DanMario24YT
A fun romp. Really liked some of the diversions for Dragon coins. Not enough
levels actually make you go out of the way to get those. Too many mile
markers. Anyway, this level's got a few weird issues. Like the reset door at
the top of the P balloon area taking you to the end of the level instead of
the P balloon spot. I'm not sure you needed to message box clue us that there
were useable pipes with coins next to them, but it's not bad to over inform, I
guess. There's a lot of different mechanics going on here, and they don't all
mesh perfectly, but it does add up to a fun little level.
#47 Pipe Craze by MarioFanGamer
The message box troll was kinda funny, but still, you've definitely got the
Mario 1 thing going on. Was kinda surprised there were no brick blocks in the
baserom (Check this), so all the turn blocks are kinda garish in comparison.
In terms of design, there's some stuff I really like here. The bonus room was
nice, and I kinda wish there'd been something similar in the second or third
parts. Most of the setups were fine or enjoyable, but the quick pipe to moving
platform ones were...not kind. Especially given how few powerups there were in
the level. I never really figured out the last one. Got it once, and then
mushroomed through. Just wish the difficulty was more consistent.
Didn't try the moon path more than once. No checkpoint made it unappealing.
#48 Chucks Frosty Field by Arity
I'm gunna be honest. I do not like the Snow Bros. It's ony of my least
favorite sprites on SMW Central. I also hate the sticky no jump blocks.
That all being said, I do think you've got some clever setups here, but it
feels like a lot of stuff was implemented with an eye to annoy the player. The
first midway, for instance, if you miss it you're stuck. You could get it with
a good jump from the right while you're big, but you explicitly put a
powerup-down pole right before the jump, presumably to prevent that. Similarly,
you only get one shot at the Boos with a powerup, which is kinda unkind.
Other than that, there's the clever bits. The jumping chucks that you have to
go under are a really cool setup. Nerve Wracking, but cool. Similarly, the back
and forth on-off sections have their moments. Just wish there weren't Ice
#49 It's Cold Outside by darkreader2636
This is a perfectly fine winter romp. The dragon coin placement was probably
the highlight, allowing for some exploration. I still hate Ice Bros, but their
placement in this level wasn't anywhere too annoying. Really liked the Mario 3
inspired bonus pipe. Exploration is this level's strong theme, but it's just a
bit too sparse to feel really satisfying. Would have liked to see a third or
maybe fourth section of similar length.
#50 Periphery by bry
Really good use of layer three for the "fire" particles. Honestly, really well
done fakeout. Was expecting something...painful. And just got Hell instead. I
think the difficulty could have been kicked up a little bit...maybe get rid of
a few power ups, but it's totally fine. Sometimes in these contests, it's nice
to have a breather. The plot was really cute. And I wish I could give you
points for the overworld conversion at the end, but sadly, I can't.
Every part worked well. Really enjoyed the upward section with the switches,
and the backtracking at the very end was really pleasant. Nice foreshadowing.
If I had any complaints, it's that the hammer bro of choice didn't really add
much difficulty to the locations they were used. Swimming a with a key means
that any projectiles that are aiming at where you were aren't libel to hit
you...ever. Also, I got squished at the end...which was weird.
#51 Sliding Castle by TheOrangeToad
Really cute concept. Lotsa butt puns here. I had fun with this level, but also
felt it didn't explore the concept too well. Like, butt sliding everywhere is
a lot of fun, but it wasn't really required to beat the level, and most of the
setups were fairly straightforward clipping of your jumps. Would have liked to
have seen some shakeup in design later in the level. The Thwamp jump near the
end kinda got there conceptually, but since spin jumps break your slide, it
didn't feel quite right. Regardless, I had fun. That matters a lot. It's also
a really pretty level. The castle aesthetic works well. The "clope" has a cute
#52 Brown Block Volcano by Blue Leaf
Really fun setups. I absolutely loved the Spiney stacked on the block snake
sprites. Everything felt fair and readable. Even when the inevitable
wait-on-the-snake-while-baseballs part came, I was still pretty happy to see
it due to that addition. The second half really steals the show though. Well
done elevator action leading to a satisfying end of the little environmental
plot. All of it was readable and all of it felt well done. Great level.
Also, the volcano action reminds me of the volcano in Kingdom of KROZ.