November 28, 2022
Oh man. They went the Eisbrecher route of yellow and black for the artwork & general aesthetic. I LOVE that combination. It just grabs you and makes you pay attention. Plus, it looks damn good and stands out from the usual oscillation between white, red and black.
My first-ever favorite band is still kicking ass. The track titles are just out of this world for guys that are pushing 60, and if I'm not mistaken this is even something of a concept album! Justice was once loosely considered one, but this record looks to be far more fitting. I like that. It feels right for the time; the world could always use a few more good concept records such that Pink Floyd aren't the only reigning champions.
The first song we've heard, Lux Æterna, is short, mid-paced and powerful - and it's not written in the key of E! James is very commanding here, and the drumming is straight ahead without nonsense. There's a pop element to the metal which is needed to move forward in today's world of music, and I happen to rather like it very much. By the way, the video's super cool, too.
As for the concept itself? 72 seasons amount to eighteen years - in this case, the formative years of each life that determine your future, and in more ways than anyone on Earth is ever taught. James's foreword about the contents is quite moving, and it's plainly evident the artwork design benefited from the lyrics.
I'm an enormous fan of the execution. I think they'll be connecting with the next wave of kids for sure on this one - perhaps more than they ever have. But really, how many people can do that for forty years?! For fuck's sake, I'm pushing thirty and feel twice that.
I feel like I'm looking at something that will be remembered fondly in decades to come. It just has that magnetism to it. Not many art releases truly garner that level of timelessness, but I usually have this same feeling when they do. Until April, all I can say is that the next five months just got a whole hell of a lot longer.
Long live Metallica!
November 13, 2022
October 28, 2022
I'm sure you've had your eye on the new icons around here.
It probably won't be by the end of 2022, so let's say I'm going to try and really get this music done in 2023. I have four tracks and I love them all. I've held onto some of them for five years, going on six...you think that's long enough of a wait?
October 6, 2022
Writing is Awesome.
Finally getting my break from modding; this has been such a productive time for my book endeavors. I tried something like this eight or nine years ago now, but it never went anywhere because I didn't have the drive, and I lacked a lot of fundamental knowledge.
But damn. It's now one of my favorite things to do. One reason is that it's so much more freeing to have three-hundred pages instead of a claustrophobic set of song lyrics. Nothing wrong with consolidation, obviously, but I had increasingly been feeling limited by that stipulation for writing music up until my sis showed me another avenue.
I've said this before, but I am doubtful I would have realized this about myself if she hadn't pushed me. Thank you, Esme, for believing in me, and helping me realize potential I never knew was there.
As is the nature with book publishing, it's going to take a little bit to manifest everything that needs to be taken care of. But there is only one empty chapter remaining, and it won't be much longer on that as I am packing loads of plans there!
September 22, 2022
Waluigi RPG version 1.2!
Creativity is as creativity does. Here I am once more, blowing whichever way the winds take me. To think I ever had a choice in the matter...HA!
This updated is PACKED! Between the feedback I've received and my own personal inspiration, this version has culminated into something very special.
In 1.2, players will have quicker access to more tools more quickly. Frustrating aspects have been sanded down or had their biting edge smoothed a notch or two, depending on the situation. Tadpole Pond has seen several changes everyone will like. Antidote, Wake-Up, Trueform & Fearless Pins have had their defensive benefits boosted, to the point where they now reasonably classify as defensive equipment! This will greatly aid struggling players in protecting themselves early on.
But that’s only a warmup. Along with a ton of tuning and polish, there are several awesome, memorable new items - Note Blocks, the Lakitu Cloud, Kuribo Shoe, Mossilixir and War Banner! There's even an adorable new creature...the Mushi! As for the rest, you'll have to check out the version history page; there's too much to list here.
1.2 is by far the most exciting expansion to this project yet. I hope you enjoy the improvements, and love the new adds as much as I do. WAAAAALUIGI NUMBER ONE!
This is the final update focused around difficulty-sanding. Waluigi RPG is not intended to be a “run to the end” experience.
September 12, 2022
Another big update is coming for Waluigi RPG, by the by.
But I’m not here to talk about that, at least not the update itself. I’m here today to have a little meta fun regarding this project’s development. You’ll either get it or you won’t, and I'd be very sad if you fell into the latter camp. So don’t.
Did you know that in another timeline, Mario RPG Goombas used to reward the “HP MAX!” Flower bonus? Did you also know that in this timeline, the bonus displays as “HPMAX!” without a space?
“That can’t be,” someone proclaims, “I’ve beaten Mario RPG at least five times, and they never dropped that or any bonus at all. I grew up with it, I would know.” Oh yes, it can. You may have seen it one way, and I another. But now I see what you saw, and I gotta confess - my timeline was better. Why'd I get switched over onto yours anyway?!
Like with a lot of timeline alterations, there’s hardly any sense to be made. In this instance, all of the other power ups use a space, so why not this one? But go look for yourself - it’s real. I recall the space in between those words very clearly from younger days - HP MAX! - it’s burned into my memory. So when I one day saw it had changed, my mind was blown. It looks less professional, and just plain silly that way. Whoever edited this fabric of the timeline, I ask you - why? Was that really necessary?
Speaking of…I uh, also believe I modified the base game myself…by accident, of course. Get your marshmallows ready.
While working on the mod I one day found two additional NPCs in the lava room in Bowser’s Keep. It was a pair of sneaky Malakoopas, which slowly close in on your position from opposite sides of the lava-filled room. I was shocked because I have played the game dozens and dozens of times, and never were there any Malakoopas in that room. Only Gu Goombas. Learning this, I had to find out for sure, and yes - even on unaltered copies of the game, the Malakoopas are now there, too! No matter what emulator, rom version, or editor version, they’re there. And yet, videos of older playthroughs online do not contain any appearances of them. Adding onto that, these new NPCs were set to use a behavioral script that did not exist in the “original” timeline version.
Now that’s what I call modding across dimensions.
Amusingly though, I had to mod my mod (!) in order for it to work properly. If you still don’t believe me, the proof is in the oddball execution, which I will illustrate. First off, this lava room is not designed for flying characters. Flying NPCs interact with terrain tiles differently, and will appear “under” certain tiles if their priority tag is not set. Well guess what - none of the tiles in this room were set with priority tags! Mind you, building a room in Mario RPG takes considerable time and patience. It would have been hilarious for Nintendo to release the game like that, and they wouldn’t make that kind of mistake.
Which circles back around to my point. They didn’t - it was altered after the fact. Does that count as an illegal modification of intellectual property? ;-)
Anyway, I ended up using them as patrols in line with the donut blocks that form the bridge. This is very similar to what the Malakoopas in the next room do - I wasn't going to redesign that entire damn room to prevent anyone from seeing the bug I had created unconsciously. How's that for weird?
This is one of the smaller instances where one of us permanently altered our surroundings over the last several years. There are many others, so many that I had to start a list. Maybe one day I’ll talk about more, but I don’t want to draw unnecessary attention. It’s just a minor, fun thing that happens now and again.
Anyway, don’t walk - drive!
September 3, 2022
I Reviewed Lightyear, the movie.
I meant to do this months ago, but shit's been crazy. If you're considering watching this movie, I highly recommend you check out my review first.
September 2, 2022
Waluigi RPG v1.1c (aye yai yai)
1.1c is in direct support of player feedback. The sentiment I’ve received gave me the idea to target two specific things:
- Early game attack / magic attack values, specifically those in Mushroom Way
- Early game experience yield, to help cross thresholds more easily
This update will significantly smooth the process of progressing with early game’s more limited toolkit due to less party members, items, spells, etc. Once you are further along and used to blocking properly (which is how every game in this franchise works - I’m not changing this) everything is just fine. We live in a world of speedrunning incredibly difficult games…it’s hard to imagine people not wanting a challenge. That said, I do not wish to create an unfair experience here.
I am not at all interested in creating multiple modes. I toyed maximally with that overall concept for my FF1 mod and have no desire to duplicate that level of development complexity again. But in this case, I agree that these areas could use more polish and shine. So I have done just that.
I believe 1.1c will greatly benefit the entire game experience, no matter what type of player you are. I made sure to examine everything so as to avoid needing to do something this sweeping in the future. Solving this early game issue should place the “difficulty” thought more to the back of the mind, instead of pushing too hard with the idea early on to the point of fatigue.
August 30, 2022
Waluigi RPG v1.1b
This affects the alternate timeline, with one teensy tiny change.
August 27, 2022
Waluigi RPG v1.1a
One more for Waluigi RPG this month! Inside are important hotfixes, updates for minigames, balance and visuals. A large boon of this patch is for Mallow and Princess Daisy - enemies put to sleep no longer counterattack the spell! (and what kind of sense did that make, anyway?)
For real this time, I am done developing on this mod for the time being. Cheers ♥
August 17, 2022
Waluigi RPG v1.1 Release
1.1 is here at last! This update grew a LOT. I didn't expect it at all, but I am quite pleased with the results. Among the small cosmetic and functional niceties, minor bug fixes, and adjustments to item/spell balance, I will try to quickly cover some key points. As always, you can head on over to version history section for the full list.
To start, a few names (just a few!) have changed to reflect the newer standards of the Mario world (e.g. Bloober->Blooper). Bowser gets some much needed love (yay!), including in the final fight. Another big one - I have finally decapitated Mallow's Psychopath ability. This slot is now called Overcast, and it provides him a new crowd control opportunity. I love the way the graphic turned out for this new spell.
Several npc-related bugs are fixed - I actually forgot to finish the coin game remix in Sunken Ship! It was one of those times you forgot what you needed to do, but also didn't write it down anywhere. There's some improvements to weapons and magic as well, many of which I've been debating on for a while. Most plentiful are the changes to items - there are cost revisions (plus cost fixes) and I've done some rebalancing of several key groups of accessories to ensure they have a compelling push-pull relationship throughout the game. There are also new items, several of which are somewhat secretive.
Note: Due to constraints, I've been putting 1.1 together slowly. At this point, I plan to shift away from mods for a while, and exclusively focus on music and writing my novel. There is not really any space to work on mods at the same time. That said, I hope you all enjoy this latest update! Oh, and one more thing - I'd like to give a shout-out to a player who helped me squash one final bug at the last minute. I really appreciate those kinds of reports, because sadly I am merely human and can't catch everything on my own. Thank you!
Have you unlocked the Vault yet?
August 11, 2022
My first physical sighting
Two nights ago at about 3 AM, I saw my first real saucer craft of this lifetime. Well, other than the insides of a particular one in my visions. Point is, I saw this one without the aid of anything fancy - just my two human eyeballs.
I was taking an additional leisurely stroll around my complex, and on my way back I was thinking out loud to my son, saying how I wish we could just be plucked up right then and there that very night. I can't remember everything I said at the time but not long after I stopped, a rounded craft lit up from the bottom in the sky, and took off into the night at an inhuman rate.
In typical fashion, it was smooth, silent and (regrettably) left my field of view within a mere second or two. The "light" underneath the craft is often mistaken by many as simply the craft itself. And of course, no human public domain vessel bears similar design to, nor is capable of the speed this craft had. Of course #2, anyone who has done their research already knows all this without me saying. But it's here to give a breadcrumb to those who haven't.
It was nice to get to view one from the outside for a change. I haven't gotten to do that in a long time. But perhaps one of the most intriguing aspects of this sighting was that the "light source" (very likely the propulsion system) of this ship was not initially visible. It quickly activated and grew to a peak luminosity as it traveled out of sight. This has led me to believe it may have been sitting still in the night sky all along, until changing course to leave the vicinity. Obviously, what I cannot say is why.
I am well aware of the fact most anyone piloting these craft are able to know if someone is down on the ground observing them. Since their perception is so great and their ability to stay hidden is equal to that, it makes one wonder about the timing of events that night, and why they allowed themselves to be seen at that moment. I was just thinking about him, and you know, he is on a ship of his own. Then as if on cue, another ship happens to speed off and away, almost as if responding in some way to what I expressed.
It wasn't scary, but actually rather familiar, even though I was surprised and do not know who was on board. It was a little like being back home again, where you'd see such craft taking off and landing on a pretty regular basis. I miss those days. Everything feels so unimportant on this planet anymore.
I'd give anything to go home right now, but needless to say, waving for any ol' saucer that careens your way isn't wise, kids. As a human you are physically, mentally, spiritually - utterly - at their mercy. Sure, they probably won't seriously harm you. But it's worth reminding oneself there are many, many, MANY factions meddling on Earth, each with their own agenda. That isn't to say some aren't halfway decent people, but it's kinda like...obviously...the rules of thumb you're already used to still apply. Out there, down here, anywhere - you don't just jump into a vehicle with random people you don't know. Unless it's an Uber.
Anyway, they can't simply take you away from Earth just because they have an interstellar vessel. First of all, they don't owe you shit. The reason I am lucky is because of my family ties. Otherwise, I'd be in the same boat. And second, it's more complicated than that anyway, which I may delve into more publicly one day. Lastly, depending on the species behind that door, it could be an even bigger gamble. As I said, there are many different groups, and some of them like humans a lot less than others.
So yeah. Very fun experience. Made me feel closer to home for just a moment. My advice - if you ever have any of your own encounters, maybe don't try the whole hitchhiking thing right away. Unless you really don't give a damn what happens.
July 5, 2022
MFF1 2.2.1 Critical Update
I have no idea what happened, but I am very thankful to a fellow player who brought an important tiling bug to my attention. No other version of this mod has ever had the issue 2.2 released with, and it has already been fixed.
If you have version 2.2, this update to version 2.2.1 is required for proper gameplay.
I did an examination of all other patches which come with the mod (there's quite a few now) only to find that they were completely clean of this tiling problem, which occurred most dominantly at the top and bottom of the world map. This is very strange... a comparison with HxD identified tons of minor changes between what 2.2's patch should have been and what it became, but again I do not know where they came from. I'm lucky no one has bitched in the reviews on RHDN about this. I will push an update there as soon as possible, so that the game is actually fully playable again. CHEERS. ♥
Waluigi RPG version 1.1 is coming.
June 23, 2022
I feel like I have experienced what they call an epiphany today.
June 16, 2022
- As for Heroes III, I have accumulated a small to-do, but progress is slow due to priority. It's coming.
- I updated the FF1 mod page with more screenshots that cycle between each other! Yay for showcasing my incredibly limited knowledge of HTML...and by that I mean, what I was able to deduce from someone else on stackexchange.
- The next update for Waluigi RPG is being worked on, and I am watching carefully for anything else that grabs my attention in order to avoid needing a hotfix post-release. If you want to see what's being planned, head on over to the live documentation where you can keep track of development.
- Regarding my writing...it is going well. It's purely a passion project, and a rather brave one. I'm not the kind of person who would bother if it wasn't.
- There are even rumblings of music progress being made...and these also go well.
May 29, 2022
I want to talk about me today.
While I have known the basics of what I am going to write in this entry for a long time, the fundamentals continue to branch off onto interesting new paths. I think about them nearly every day, as I increasingly feel less human and more like I used to be, like I've always been deep down.
I come from a planet different from the one I came to reside on more permanently. Unlike the people I ended up with, I was basically what you'd call an amazon here on Earth. I even had a spear and bow. I've always loved those tools in particular. My own people are a race of jungle-dwellers who worship a group of guardians which preside over that world. They do not take kindly to outsiders, and they are rather against what you might call "modern technological advancements". The likes of which seen on an interstellar vessel are considered even more of a threat! Most of the people living there at the time when I was still around subscribed to these sort of xenophobic beliefs, but I was a little different. Curiosity has always been a close friend to me, and I was interested to see just what I was missing out on in the universe. Turns out, there was a lot. Even though I had to learn a whole new way of life, my sister and I took our religious talismans with us (probably much to the dismay of our tribe) and we are still connected to our original guardians to this day.
It is very self-evident that even after losing my life here, I kept intact much of who I was before. On this world I have, especially during childhood from Earth family and peers, been criticized for being more animal-like than human in various ways; there are honestly too many to list. However, this is exactly how I was prior to coming here. It is not a disorder, there is nothing to "cure", and there is no complex. It is the nature of my species.
Over time I have realized that I am a sort of split between animal and the common two-armed, two-legged variety of intelligent beings. That is to say in this case, something akin to a "cat-person". No, I did not have fur (look at the pictures around here) but I could hiss, growl and purr! I have to suppress this instinct often during my interaction with humans, and it is part of why the social aspect of life is so very draining at times. More recently though, I have begun to embrace that side of me which got buried somewhere along the way in miserable adolescent Earth existence. And in spite of my people's flaws - present in any society, mind you - I am proud of what I am and where I come from. Getting back to what I truly am brings me a unique feeling of happiness. Everybody deserves the chance to experience that.
This all reminds me of times when I've scratched my head at individuals who say they "feel male some of the time, then female others". As is typical of a person who is presently ignorant of any given thing, I failed to understand their logic until something similar applied to me. Perhaps also amusingly, I realized how close to home the Earth phrase "curiosity killed the cat" hits - and in more ways than one.
I've read about how as a being, you typically "chase" one kind of energy with another in tow behind you (refer to the yin-yang symbol) but I can say for sure it runs a lot deeper than that. It's a bit too over my head to process right now, but luckily most people who happen across this won't know what I'm talking about anyway. And while I wouldn't trust the general public to know what they're doing when it comes to making sense of all the different varieties of people on this world alone, I can tell you this: pick any piece of sci-fi media, forward to a scene with a bar, tavern or other crowded space. These scenes depict just how it really is out there. Jelly blobs? Got 'em. Four-armed bartenders? Need those. Tall, short, indescribable, enticing...everything. Anything you can imagine exists, because our universe is filled with people from every manner of vastly different cultures and backgrounds.
So next time you see somebody who is a little different, don't judge them. Instead ask yourself: "I wonder where they came from..."
May 22, 2022
Waluigi RPG HOTFIX version 1.0.1
Have you wondered what the hell Manall was thinking when designing Forest Mushrooms or the new Gimme Guys that might have crashed you once or twice after they ran away? Have no fear, for I do not merely create mods, I slay all bugs who might oppose their undeniable greatness. Get the latest version and save yourself a couple needless headaches!
(P.S. Vault users do not need to update their vault with this version)
May 10, 2022
Waluigi RPG Makes Its Debut TODAY
Oh yes, that surely is two big releases back to back. The day is finally here - It is time to unveil my fourth major mod, Waluigi RPG!!
Ever wanted to see Waluigi in a game that didn't involve golf, tennis or party board games? Are you tired of Nintendo intentionally neglecting a charismatic antihero with loads of untapped potential? If you answered 'Yes' to either of the above, then this mod is for you. I love Waluigi, and Super Mario RPG is still a great game. So why not have a Waluigi RPG?
Someone's gotta do it if NintenWON'T.
Waluigi RPG takes place in an alternate timeline, but that is merely a headline lacking details. Not only are Mario and Toadstool away on a lengthy vacation when alt-Exor comes crashing, but Daisy of Sarasaland is in the wrong place at the wrong time, too. Her royal tour of the Mushroom Kingdom is cut short when she is abducted by a love-starved Bowser, who wasn't invited to Mario's latest sunshine-filled odyssey.
To some, Waluigi may be nothing more than a cheat with powerful abilities. But in a parallel universe more fortunate than ours, he's given plenty of chances to prove that he is more than meets the eye. He's certainly not foolish enough to squander the girl of his dreams, and he'll go along with whatever amount of craziness in Mario's world in order to win her back!
SMRPG is a buggy ass game to edit, and most of its 'hacks' (that's the crude-sounding term everyone else insists on using) are chock-full of overcrowded spider webs. Mine is not. The challenge is probably greater than MFF1, but not so hard that you'd want to give up! There are many good things to look forward to, and I'm not talking about the chows waiting in the next room if you proceed through the pipe. There's a script that integrates Waluigi and Daisy, (lots of) new secrets, weapons, abilities, items, and better balance, quality of life, dramatic flair, body odor, rhythmically sound macroeconomics...
Anyway, head on over to the project page to check-check it. It's straight out of the oven and piping hot. This labor of love began just last year, and I am proud to say it is now ready for general consumption!
Oh, and one more thing... WAAAAAAA!
April 28, 2022
MFF1 v2.2 Release!
This is an exciting and momentous occasion for me personally. Ever since 2.1, I have begun manifesting ideas from as far back as three YEARS ago, which I had gloomily resigned to never finish, much less start. This update gives massive closure to that wave of previously unused creativity. In addition to a moderately hefty balance update, 2.2 brings surprises for veterans - TWO new bonus classes, and all-new "Caustic Aliens" skins for all playable characters...heheh.
I'd been kicking around the idea of alien sprites for a long time (since it's a lot more relatable for me) and the result is a dose of both creepy and very awesome. No matter what set of classes you are using, there is a caustic patch to accommodate your lineup, and turn your group into lean, green, teardrop-eyed killing machines. Did I mention they're sexy as hell? Now, how about those new classes? I'll give a very brief overview...
The Blue Rose is something of an even more extreme Green Mage, whom she replaces. She is quite frail, but can cast nearly any spell, using a new class of weapons (Flowers!) designed specifically to inflict status over damage.
The Cat Tail joins as the second bonus class, replacing the Archer and wielding Harps to great effect. Her critical bonus is especially striking, and her cat-like reflexes place her dodge chance in a tier all its own. Though not as outright strong as the Archer, she is hardier and perhaps more dangerous with the right support. She excels when targeting specific creatures, another feat she emphasizes more than other classes, and can serve as an evade tank in absence of a beefy Knight or Ninja.
Thief users will rejoice with improved starting LUCK with this patch, and several melee-oriented improvements have been made as well. Monsters have been tuned closer to perfection, and updates to the world map round out the substance with some aesthetic improvements.
This is probably the most exciting update since the behemoth 2.0, which basically turned this mod from a humble shelf curiosity into something worth playing and spamming my front page about. I had no idea these new additions would be delayed for so long, only to one day finally realize their potential. I hope you have as much fun trying out the new stuff as I did making it.
April 17, 2022
I have not forgotten about my purple-topped friend! After 2.2 is done for MFF1, I will be gunning for releasing Waluigi RPG next. Nothing bad has happened, it's mostly just been a case of priorities lately. I've actually done a couple little fixes on it in the last few months, and there are two things I need to do another full playthrough for, in order to test them properly. But things have just kinda been sitting quietly for the time being. That will change, though.
Quick footnote- you may have noticed by now, but Google Docs recently introduced a "pageless" feature - one which I've been wanting for over a decade - and so all documentation for my mods has been converted over to this new, convenient, far cleaner look with some nice new section dividers.
April 9, 2022
Update on MFF1 Update
The next version will be more ambitious than originally planned. There is a wide variety of small and large additions in the pipeline, particularly for veteran players.
It's going to require some reorganization, and I hope my brain can handle it...I'm signing up for a lot of extra work by committing to this, but I am quite excited to see everything to completion! I have decided against breaking up the ideas into separate updates, so the next version you see will be 2.2.
I'd love to talk about the details, but I must refrain for the time being. Stick around! ♥
April 3, 2022
FF1 Stat Philosophy
I haven’t done many theorycrafting posts. I deal with that kind of stuff all the time, and thought it would be fun to do a short segment for the mod I'm working on right now.
Someone recently told me their Thief’s Agility bonus didn’t seem worth it for having given up the Fighter’s party leader slot compared to those extra monster hits. I decided I disagreed with this assessment, however I took an extra look at her Luck stat instead, and found that there was a lot of room for improvement. That was before version 2.1, and another bonus is planned for the next update.
For the NES, Luck is a very interesting stat in FF1. Not many know how it truly works because most people's explanations for it are wrong. Its well-known function is to make running from battles easier, but the benefits do not stop there! For the party leader only, both Agility and Luck add up to determine if you are striking first, fighting free for all, or being ambushed by the enemy. The formula is as follows:
AGI + LUCK / 8 = x
rnd# (2x) to (100 + x) - (ambush value) = y
if y is greater than 89, party strikes first
if y is less than 11, monsters strike first
As you can see, this scales in your favor over time, albeit very slowly. Since Thief already always flees successfully where possible, it was much more balance-friendly to tweak their preemptive odds via Luck instead of Agility, which has the massively powerful side effect of further raising your dodge chance.
In a beta build for the upcoming 2.1.1 version, I did some 100-battle trials to see what my benefits for having a Thief lead the party really looked like. Keep in mind the following -
- the bad RNG of FF1
- the small sample size of 100x4
- that these trials were done with a Thief that had +50 base Luck on top of the +25 I gave in version 2.1.
Trial 1 - LV16 Fighter as Leader (AGI + LUCK = 29)
- only formations w/ default ambush bonus (4)
- out of 100 battles, 11 were preemptive, 5 were ambushes
Trial 2 - LV16 Thief as Leader (AGI + LUCK = 168)
- only formations w/ default ambush bonus (4)
- out of 100 battles, 37 were preemptive, 0 were ambushes
Trial 3 - LV16 Fighter as Leader (AGI + LUCK = 29)
- mixed ambush bonus formations (4, 27)
- out of 100 battles, 11 were preemptive, 12 were ambushes
Trial 4 - LV16 Thief as Leader (AGI + LUCK = 168)
- mixed ambush bonus formations (4, 27)
- out of 100 battles, 28 were preemptive, 0 were ambushes
Note the complete lack of ambushes when the Thief was leading. Also take notice of the reduced preemptive count between trials 2 and 4. The relationship between AGI+LUCK acts as a sort of "pool" that depletes the enemy's chance to ambush more quickly than it adds to your chance to strike first. This can be viewed as a 'penalty' against the player vs. monster formations with a high ambush chance. You won't be ambushed as often (perhaps even at all) but you won't be getting the upper hand just for being a Thief, either. Your reward in these cases is essentially more even-ground fighting, as opposed to just getting dunked on for free.
That is to say, the benefits of having a Thief party leader are very real, and look different depending on who you're up against. After 2.1.1, they will be even more noticeable. It's a small aspect of the game, but I hope this shows the distinction they have over Fighters more clearly. I intend to make sure both classes are worth it, and that this new advantage over the vanilla game is properly utilized.
March 28, 2022
It's basically already summer here. Free heat strokes as far as the eye can see! These human bodies suck. There's no way I would have survived my humid ass jungle world in this meatbag...I miiight lowkey need to hibernate in a cryo chamber for the next five months.
Last update for March - I have been writing and editing a lot recently. Have also been testing and iterating on MFF1. I already mentioned a new mystery box surprise - that's going to be the main attraction. Other than that, I'm doing what I imagine will be the final monster difficulty pass. That is to say, I will be toughening them up a little.
That reminds me of an amusing anecdote. Back when I did...I think 2.02, someone bitched in the RHDN comments about how there was "no need to play it again if it's just going to be made easier." To whoever that asshat was (and very much likely still is, I mean what are the odds, really?) I nerfed NITEMARE defense by 30 percent because they were so impossible to deal with when first encountered, that they weren't worth killing for the reward. That's called design, neanderthals - not balance. Just don't read stupid shit people say. Not everything is about death metal levels of difficulty. That already exists at any rate - go play FF1 Terror!
Anyway, since 2.1 solved the majority of things, there isn't too much else in the cards right now. But due to the nature of the bonus content I'm gonna need enough time to ensure playtesting agrees with what I have in mind. I really like the idea of bonus goodies. It lets me do things that don't impact the primary game, and add even more customization (and who doesn't love that?)
March 20, 2022
March 16, 2022
FF1 2.1 Release
This is the largest update since version 2.0 back in 2020! I can't believe it's been almost two years. I'm thinking everything is in a good place now. There are some changes included in this version that were directly inspired by player feedback. Documentation has leveled up in a couple places, and I fixed the monster density bug in 2.04 - it is now OFF by default as it should be.
Check out a new surprise in the mystery box - I've always wanted to add more goodies to it!
March 11, 2022
Having an entire planetary prison system target you to make you miserable (or dead) on a recurring basis isn't easy. You can't help wondering for every place you go, every person you meet, every new thing you set out to accomplish - will we be okay? Will they be okay? What will happen to what ever new endeavor in three weeks when the opportunity is intentionally snatched up, making it all a waste of time?
It's very humbling to sit and think how there are those who would dismiss all this as the ramblings of a crazy person and only clock in for the human elements they're comfortable with. If they were living it themselves, they would never behave in such a manner. To be honest, that sounds even worse to me than all of the above.
Anyone who dies here believing in one religion's god or another is appealed to after being captured by the prison system. Ever seen a sci-fi show where someone scans a person's neurons for the information they want to know? Imagine an immensely more complicated system that can handle millions at a time, spanning the solar system and beyond so that no one can escape. Let's say you're the creator of that system, and you have a list of all the various things a prisoner can believe based on what they can be exposed to on Earth. With that kind of know-how and power, you only have to feed that list into the system, tell it what to look for in each spirit who passes by and show them what they want to see to get them on your side. Then you have them in your pocket, and can do what you want with them. In this case, that's to blast their memories away with billions of volts of electric current (yes, like lightning) and send them back down to Earth to be born again with a whole new set of scrambled attributes, such that they can never again have a proper grip on reality. This really isn't hard to understand, nor is it hard to see how tragic the reality of the situation is.
This happens every day, because people die every day. Every day, people are vacuumed up and fed back into this system so that they can be born again to random people they do not know, light years from their real families and believing that an artificially intelligent array of electrons is responsible for their creation, and their destiny.
People can watch some show and pass judgment on what they believe are merely a fictional character's deeds, but they do not use this same distinguishing judgment in the world around them. It is sad, because all art is based on existence, not the other way around. Don't have those kind of double standards. Those archetypes and characteristics are being put out there to try and get people to wake up.
You can't talk about corrupt governments and banks and agencies without looking to the top to see what it is they're trying to protect. We all know a cartoon villain who reveals his plan is a bad villain. You won't hear any of those guys talking about this. Why would they do that?
March 3, 2022
This one is gonna kill all the non-believers.
Back in November, I had a very vivid dream where the United States had slid into ruin (read: more so than it is in now). The current president had been assassinated, and there was a giant, round sphere suspended above the country that would glow with a blinding light and intense heat. It was not the sun - this was an artificial satellite, which I seemed to know had been created by China. It appeared slightly larger than the moon. I believe the temperature outside would rise to no less than 130 degrees Fahrenheit while it was activated. This punishing heat would last for five minutes, followed by something like a ten or fifteen minute off-period. The device was designed for torture, and cycled on and off all day, including at night.
Early on in the dream, vision, call it what you will - I've had many of them, and my mate has had even more - I was caught outside when the satellite activated. It was brutal. You could hardly see from the light, and that five minutes seemed like an hour. I did survive, but the heat was only part of the problem. It would seem the U.S. had been invaded, and there appeared to have been earthquakes throughout the country. For example a neighborhood sidewalk might have been separated tens of feet from its connected house - the terrain had been raised, sunken and split into pieces that were often unassailable.
Soldiers would occasionally clear out a seemingly random house or other building, sparing no one inside. This didn't happen often, thankfully. I do not know what military they belonged to. Regular civilians had resigned to gathering around soda machines and any other drink-disposing area, turning the surroundings into lounges with any chairs and couches they could find. Life in general had come to a halt. The only motivation to do anything was spurred by the sound of gunfire. People got used to it after a while, and there really was nothing to do but sit indoors and wait to die.
I don't normally broadcast this kind of thing so bluntly, but I do so today because I accidentally learned that, well, China is building an artificial sun.
I already mentioned before that November featured some interesting predictions for me already, and more than one at that. I continue to realize that the number was larger than I thought. I am way past the point of caring if an individual fails to see how such a "second sight" is possible. There's plenty of material out there for anyone willing to learn, and everyone else will remain willfully ignorant until it is too late. Not my problem.
Safety disclaimer time, since this is the internet - I'm NOT saying this is gonna happen soon, or that it will at all - I'm saying I was one-hundred percent unaware of this device from a 'regular human' standpoint (there are other means I could have been made aware) and I only bumped into the harrowing, physical facts by chance. I never pursued this topic after the dream, and largely forgot about it after archiving the dream to my log. It would not be the first time I have seen a glimpse of a possible future event. I do say possible, because the future is a fluid thing.
Out of all the things we've seen, I really wouldn't mind being wrong about this one.
March 1, 2022
More FF1 News
February 25, 2022
This year will be one for the history books. There is a lot of interesting activity going on at the moment. You can be sure that various otherworldly factions are watching the situation very closely.
I won't say how, but I kinda inadvertently predicted this would occur about four months ago...though at the time I did not realize what I was doing - much less that it would happen so soon.
This won't wipe out the human species, but it is very likely to have long term consequences. On a personal note, this was only part of that accidental 'prediction', if you can call it that. There're a few other, 'lesser' things on the list as well. I am interested to see which ones manifest.
My biggest hope of all is that the coming events help at least a small percentage of this abused population to finally realize that all their religions are corrupt, that there is a vast living, breathing universe beyond this fell husk of a planet, and that the goal of those in charge of this prison is only to enslave the inhabitants, and prevent them from having any idea what is real. No progress is going to be made as long as the majority of humans use a deity as a substitute for higher reasoning.
It's time to start waking up.
February 22, 2022
Today, in 24-hour time is a rare instance in our counting system. It will be 22:22:22 on 2/22/22. That's more 2's, or any same number for that matter, than there will ever be again for another two hundred years. You're welcome. It'll be over in just a second, literally.
February 15, 2022
Waluigi Log #9!
Oh man, I've been waiting to say this for too long - the purple bad boy's nearly ready to go. We're getting very close!!
I could probably release it right now, but that would be hasty for my standards. I'm thinking about doing one more playthrough just to make absolutely sure everything is spectacular. I just recently finished combing for any remaining combat-related script hangs, and I only found one! Pretty proud of that - Mario RPG is insanely finnicky, and that's (part of) why most mods for it suck ass. The only thing worse than this that I've encountered so far was creating Mirror Forest in D2.
Speaking of, my Diablo II mod's documentation is now (as of yesterday) source-based from my live Google docs, like FF1 and HoMM3. All mods have now been converted over to this format, and Waluigi RPG will follow suit on release day. Documentation for WLRPG is also complete.
One final footnote - the 1.5 update for HoMM3 is basically done - save one thing, and I have to do a clean reinstall and a bunch of obnoxious troubleshooting for that. So I haven't done it yet. But I will.
Please look forward to the release of the new WLRPG soon!
February 13, 2022
Manall's FF1 v2.04 Release
I've been looking for an excuse to do an update for months. A user submitted a, gasp... bug report, which finally gave me just what I needed. The addition of inns to rest stops had the hilarious side effect of selling quest items in Onrac's weapon shop! Luckily, I was able to fix this and without any compromises - I say that because you have no idea how truly encumbered the code is at this point.
There's some other minor niceties along the way. The original password to the mystery box was a heap of unintuitive bullshit, and this was ultimately a multi-layered stupidity thing on my part. So anyway, it's easier to understand based on the hint/context now. Lots of people have come to me about that, and I hope this helps.
A big thing is that the documentation is now accessed from the website directly via my shared link google docs. Google docs really sucks sometimes - have I mentioned that before? I've done the best I can to reproduce the way it looked on the old mods website, and it's like 99.9% there. That's as close as it's gonna get on my end. Bitch at them if you don't like it, because there's nothing else I can do. They screwed up saving .pdf files too, and I posted about this months ago in case you missed that. As long as you have internet, you can still access everything like before.
There are also a few item improvements which concern the Archer and Green Mage. I've wanted to implement these for some time as well, though I wanted to justify spamming romhacking.net's front page with a sizeable-enough patch before pushing these out.
One last thing. The maps folder that comes with the mod has been merged with the old dungeon/treasures section, and that part of the documentation has been removed due to redundancy. Now, you can view the map and see monster encounter data + the treasure legend all at once. This is how I always wanted it to be, but it was just a major pain in the ass to execute. I've finally gotten it done, and this should never need to be touched again. It's much more convenient and less retarded this way.
I don't usually ramble on about an entire patch's contents, but since I'm largely quite satisfied with this project's state today is sort of an occasion. Check out the details and give the new version a shot - and try a new party while you're at it!
January 25, 2022
Guess who has a Ko-fi page? This girl!
Over time, I've had a lot of people stop to take the time and send me emails about how much they like one project or another. I love getting these emails. It's like a random happiness event that makes my whole day better. I remembered that someone who worked with me on the FF1 mod had a Ko-fi page, and I asked myself, "Why am I not doing this?" to which I had no reply. It's simpler, way more laid-back than other platforms, and it's sure as hell not subscription-based.
I'll say this only once, and let the new addition to the right-side bar be my mouthpiece henceforth - if you get anything at all out of what I do here, you now have the option to support my creations more directly.
Since the making of this website back in 2013, I have never stopped working on my projects. Many of them have multiple years behind them. Few things can be more motivating than external support.
I don't expect a damn thing. I'm gonna make this stuff regardless. I'm not about to shove a social cause or false promise campaign up your ass, either. It's nothing besides what it is. That's how everything is and always will be around here.
By the way, a new review has been added - this time for Encanto!
January 19, 2022
Holy shit. Micro$oft just bought Activision Blizzard - for $69 billion, making it the largest acquisition in gaming and probably one of the biggest headlines in gaming ever. One step closer to total monopoly. This is likely to have enormous ripple effects in the coming years!
I remember back in November last year when, in response to the absolutely asinine scandals, Phil Spencer said he was going to "re-evaluate" every aspect of their relationship with ActiBlizz. Well, nothing says re-evaluation like buying the shit out of everything you own and putting you to work.
Honestly, Bobby Kotick earned this ending. You need to be a more diverse sociopath than him if you want to maintain an empire. He proved unable to adapt beyond his famously quoted philosophy of "wanting to take all the fun out of making video games", and now he's going to lie in the piss.
I probably won't be around to see it, but I really do wonder if anyone will ever figure out that it's actually a good thing to be nice to your artists, nerds and idealists, and to give them breathing room to work (and, you know, exist). Instead, the corrupt guardian personalities on Earth have decided amongst their giant echo chamber of likeminded criminals that it is their duty to tame us all like wild animals.
I'm not going to sit here and express any love whatsoever for M$. I have none. This will probably have medium-term benefits for the employees at Activision Blizz, and the amount of capital now able to be thrown at anything they dream up is suddenly out of this world.
Maybe the females can stop being harassed, groped, and raped in the process.
A lot of cleanup has to be done at these two companies if any progress is to be attempted or sustained. I hope the terrible, arrogant and blind culture that has been erected there gets thrown out the nearest airlock. And you can be certain M$ will not tolerate this kind of PR nightmare under their supervision.
It's not a great solution, but I guess it is the only justice this planet could muster for such a massive and elongated failure. Whether we like it or not, change is on the way - and it's sure to make the rounds.
January 18, 2022
Been hard at work on the book. I had no idea how much I would like doing this. There is a lot I can say about the process, as well as everything leading up.
First, I think it most important to start by saying that without the encouragement of my sister (from my previous life - hi Esme!) this would never have happened at all. For many years, I was mildly disappointed that I had no such ability to take on a project like writing a novel. INFP is often described as having a talent for writing, and I felt so certain I was the exception to that. It always sounded like fun, but way out of my league and skillset. I was wrong.
My sis encouraged me to write the review I posted back in November. At the time, I didn't really know why I was doing it. But as I edited the final piece, I had a feeling it was going to be a gateway to something more. After the signs she gave me, I knew I had done the right thing, and started having thoughts about creating my own story. The ideas came as though a floodgate had been opened for the first time. I couldn't set up the world fast enough.
It's been a joy to work on. I've embraced the learning process more so than with anything else I've ever done. It seems so much more attainable. Having something that excites you is a must. One thing that really surprised me at first - I couldn't believe how similar it is to making music. For me, it's actually far easier. I still sift through notes, organize charts and develop concepts. With this though, it is all about the words. No mixing, panning, or EQ. No ear fatigue, choosing sounds, or recording. It's more peaceful - though I do get the hand cramps when I can't put my mobile google docs down!
I never knew what it was like to create a world with characters and believe in it. I'm not sure I took part in anything like this back home, but I do know she has helped me to get here, and that she knew before I did that this would be good for me to do for more than one reason. Considering that she knew all along what this story was going to be about, and some things which have happened over the past two years, I want to use this entry as a permanent thank-you; not only for putting up with me during that time, but also for giving me the opportunity to create something new out of it instead of merely reaching the end of a long, dark tunnel with no exit. I'm not sure I deserve that.
That is to say, I am very grateful to have you at my side. You are very loved.
January 2, 2022
It's so empty here now!
I've finally figured out a better way to archive blog entries. You can find them under the Home section. Been working on getting this place more organized recently, and I think that was the last thing on my list.
Speaking of lists, I'm here today to show you what I'm working on in 2022. Just so you know, there are no projected dates attached to any of these, but as time permits I will be cracking away at each of them, in no particular order:
Waluigi RPG 1.0 Release
This project is in the early stages of the final rounds of testing.
Manall's HoMM3 1.5 Update
1.5 will focus on improving underused necklaces, buffing creature specialists and increasing spell power's potency as a primary skill.
New Music Releases
I have no additional details to share at this time.
I've accumulated some writing tenure, and had plenty to think about in recent times. I will give you three words: Family, Horror, Love.
I plan to make 2022 count. Please look forward to each of these as they come.
I am more determined about my creations than ever.