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Posted on 08-05-18, 08:36 pm
KingYoshi rereg. under probation

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I've been thinking of posting this for some time.. I really dislike to bring up this subject again, especially since it has only been one day since the last time someone kind of mentioned it. But I do think the atmosphere and the lack of enthousiasm and activity on this forum over the past time is an issue. An issue we actually could try to fix, and therefore, one that should be talked about. The main problem is that people keep mentioning it but it never comes to concrete plans or action.


I know that it's not weird that the interest in NSMB hacking decreases because of aging of both the game and people here. But there's still interest in other, even older games, like Super Mario World. SMW was very popular, but NSMB has been a great game as well and it was the first game of the "New" series.

What I am trying to say, is that there's no point of either grousing about the inactivity or dealing with it. I think we all should think of ways to bring the old atmosphere back. I mean, it wouldn’t hurt if we just tried. But we won’t. There are ways to promote NSMB Hacking and this board. This site has a lack of popularity for sure.

People may say that everything that could be done for NSMB hacking has already been done. But we need to realise that isn’t true at all. There’s still stuff to do on the technical side of things (docs and tutorials).
Also, I’d like to quote this:

Posted by StapleButter
(…) Level editing has been done since 2007 or so. Graphics editing has been done. Text editing has been done. 3D model/texture editing/importing has been done. Music hacking has been done. The main directions to go now would be a) ASM hacking and b) multiplayer hacking. The former is a pain due to the overlays thing and the lack of a disassembler suited to handle that. The latter is a pain due to the lack of wifi support in DS emulators.

Another direction, though, would be improving the toolsets available for the above domains. Most of them are still a pain in the ass to do, and model hacking still requires illegally using Nintendo's tools. (…)


Improving the toolsets we have would be a great idea.  Gota7 and I have been working on a new music hacking guide, and Nitro Studio should make things way easier and more accessible than it was at the time of Orengefox’s guide. Worldmap editing and modelling are also still a thing. On the other hand, there have been three worldmap editors and a guide but there still doesn't seem to be too much interest in editing or making these - for whatever reason. I guess modelling makes it harder when you can't get along with 3DSMax or Maya, or when you're not able to get those tools and the needed plugins. But let’s think about these kind of things. What parts of NSMB hacking could use more documentation or custom tools?

(…) Or we could look at why SMW hacking is still going in 2015 2018 even though they have already done everything you can do to that game. (…)


Let's actually do this and look at other boards like the SMW one and see what they do. SMW’s forum has had over 1,500 hacks. Or what about looking at this board's history? How was the activity and moderation back then? How come that there were more talented and more motivated hackers around?
Some wise man told me once: "A board doesn't die from inactivity. It dies from lack of management." If it comes to board changes, I’d be willing to help thinking about stuff we - or the mods - could do to improve. One thing I’ve noticed is that people like to chat. I’m not saying we should all move this board to Skype or Discord, but what about an actual NSMBHD chatbox instead of the IRC chat, so you don’t have to get a real server client and make a separate account somewhere else, just to chat with other users of this board? (stolen idea by  MarioFanatic64)

The last things I’d like to show are this post by  RiksKing, and this quote:

Posted by MeroMero
Several newcomers are seemingly scared as of late:
_maybe because since all the new discoveries in NSMB hacking, they feel the standard quality for a presentable hack suddenly skyrocketed;
_maybe because of the steep learning curve when it comes to more advanced modifications,
_maybe because of the snarkiness / bluntness (that would be me) / elitism / mocking / marginalizing coming from older users (…)


It worries me that the posts I quoted/linked are from 2014-2015 and that not much has changed since then. NewerSMB has likely been the only actual high peak in the meantime. And I think I feel the "bashfulness" RiksKing talks about in his post. And it might be true some NSMB hacking stuff is just too advanced and not accessible for new people. Look at that beautiful worldmap hacking guide.


My conclusion:
I think the main problem about all this is that we keep hanging in this same situation for too long. There have been multiple topics about this issue, but it never comes to concrete plans or action. If we want to make a change, we need to actually do something. Let's make NSMBHD great again.

So these are my thoughts. I'm sorry for bringing up this discussion again, but I hope there can come something worthful out of this time. Be free to share your thoughts or suggestions.
Posted on 08-05-18, 08:43 pm
Pokey
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I think that's a great idea, but as some mods already stated, we can't just say let's do this and then expect everyone to chip in. Some of us have lives and little time to work on our own projects, let alone helping others with things. Some of us have jobs, and families, and other important things to take care of. Mario hacking to me is just kind of a hobby to me. I don't really devote to it.

Would I like to be more active? Yes I would. I do enjoy mario hacking and sharing my creations along with others', but simply I do not have much time for it.
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New Super Mario Bros. U DS:
https://nsmbhd.net/thread/4444-new-super-mario-bros-u-ds-demo-release/
Posted on 08-05-18, 09:17 pm (rev. 1 by RicBent on 08-05-18, 09:24 pm)
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First things first: Hello  KingYoshi. Better to catch a rereg late than never.

The main reason for the decrease in interest into NSMB hacking is the general decline in interest into ROM hacking. Most ROM hacking communities had/have a similar decline. You generally overestimate the potential size of the community. ROM hacking is just not considered that interesting anymore.

The lack of tools is also just caused by the lack of interest/size by the community. Example Goombatlas: I coded it for a few weeks just to realize that maybe 2 or 3 people were interested. Nobody continues to code something for so few people unless he needs it for himself.

And for that chat thing: A chat platform for the community is not a bad idea per se.
But I know where it leads. nsmb2hax and RHC both went the board + discord way. In both cases first the board died because the discord was good enough. Then people didn't find the community anymore and the quality of content declined as nothing had the chance to be preserved. This lead to the death of the discord.

This board had the same amount of posts the last few years and it survived everything. We better have a little less activity than let it die just like nsmb2hax and RHC.

And maybe the release of the Newer DS source and tools in a few weeks will lead to a little more activity soon. We will see.


Edit: Also I am actually planning to get into NSMB2 again. Considering all places for it died maybe NSMBHD could be a good home for it? Still nothing decided yet. Maybe still a good idea to get a bit more activity and get a few more people into NSMB2 hacking.
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Posted on 08-05-18, 09:29 pm
Pokey
Swagmaster

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Who's KingYoshi?
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New Super Mario Bros. U DS:
https://nsmbhd.net/thread/4444-new-super-mario-bros-u-ds-demo-release/
Posted on 08-05-18, 09:32 pm, deleted by  StapleButter
Posted on 08-05-18, 09:51 pm, deleted by  StapleButter
Posted on 08-05-18, 09:55 pm
Ninji
W1 out :)

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Due to the fact that I joined this board less than a year ago I can't say if it got less active or something.
But one thing I discovered was the "dissappearance" of some bigger hackers that just logged out one day and never returned.

Nitro Studio's development seems to go on a good way and my and in the future Gota's music hacking guide will (hopefully) make music hacking available for everyone.
And the death of the development of worldmap editors is one thing I was always sad about. Always wanted to edit the world map by myself.

About that chat idea: if board + discord seems not to work, can't we build one on this website? (honestly i have no idea if that is complicated or not)

NSMB2 would also be cool. Because there seems to be no place for NSMB2 hackers to go, this might actually be a good idea.


My plan (and ill try to actually change my behaviour in this way: Ill try to post more.
Not in the "main" regions because I don't have to say enough. But maybe in the Featherland (I should definetly post some memes there hehehe)
I really hope that some new posts in the older Featherland-justforfun threads and maybe some trashtalk will bring back activity at least a bit.

Even if trashtalk is not the main reason for this board, it will make things much more friendly (at least thats my opinion)
Many people are not writing anything and just reading.
From my point of view, on this board are a lot of nice people from all over the world and I would be happy if we could just be again what this should be: a community of nice people doing some hacking on Mario games.
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New Super Luigi DS v1.0///// YT (mostly music/remixes)
Posted on 08-05-18, 10:01 pm
☭ communist leader ☭


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Posted by Skylander
That's a shame. Why do they feel the need to do that? The most mature thing to do is if you don't like someone for a certain reason, (you for example) is just to not do anything. It's not worth disturbing peace

in their defense that happened over one year ago.


re: chat

why would we need a onboard chatbox when we can have better with IRC, which we already have
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zrghij
Posted on 08-05-18, 10:03 pm
Red Goomba


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Decline in romhacking is not necessarily true.
For example, SM64DS hacking popularity went up massively in the past year, giving birth to a few more projects,
and SM64 hacks will always be in the making.

But what does make hacking less popular, is a lack of tools and a lack of knowledge
I think the main stub in NSMB hacking is the lack of knowledge.
Sure the tutorials section is huge, but is it really complete and easy to follow?
Making a youtube tutorial series for SM64DS for example is one of the main reasons it got more popular, if someone were to do that with NSMBDS, that can give new hackers an easy way to start out.

Nella carne io sono uno, ma nello spirito, che sono e per sempre saranno sette.

Posted on 08-05-18, 10:13 pm
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Well NSMBDS already has a large set of tools. I can't really think of many things that don't have the necessary tools minus the world map and maybe sound. There was a reason for the end of NSMBe development: It was good enough for NSMBDS. And in the past there were very few people complaining about the tutorials we have.

Also IIRC there already is a (admittedly old) YT series on NSMB hacking. But an updated one could surely help a bit.
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Posted on 08-05-18, 10:20 pm (rev. 2 by BooChewbaca on 08-05-18, 10:26 pm)
Ninji
W1 out :)

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cough i made a ton of videos about music hacking but no one cared cough

but yeah, some better tutorials about the basics are a very good idea.
once i finish the work i am currently doing i might find some time to explain some stuff in a video. If interest is there about soemthing like video tutorials, would someone make a thread about the organisation (so that not two or more people make a video about the same thing)

and @staplebutter if i just could get that darn thing to work made it, there are too many wrong IRC channel threads/posts out there

no one was complaining about the tutorials. but when i started hacking less than a year ago most of this was trial and error. With my little knowledge i wasn't able to get anything to work and I couldn't search the right things because i didn't know the names and stuff. I tried over and over again and finally understood it. But not everyone has the patience for this.
Many people register and never come back again. Of course there is not way knowing if this was because of complexity or something else

And yes, we have a ton of tools. Good tools. And for everyone wanting to level hack those tools are enough. But as said above, the start is very hard (in my opinion) and if you want to improve as a hacker in general, things start to get very complicated very fast.

EDIT: and fun fact, the last days seemed pretty active compared to a couple of weeks ago when looking at "Last posts"
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New Super Luigi DS v1.0///// YT (mostly music/remixes)
Posted on 08-05-18, 10:59 pm
(Words)

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You know, everyone likes to point to different events, people, or other things for board inactivity but I feel like the root of the problem isn't any of those.

It's the very basis of the board, the game we're hacking here.

NSMBDS is very limited; We don't have layers, can't import models and animations on the fly, tilesets are very limited even when compared to games like SMW, pallets for graphics and the like are all thrown about the rom, etc...

Posted by Gota7
I think the main stub in NSMB hacking is the lack of knowledge.

Posted by BooChewbaca
(...) but when i started hacking less than a year ago most of this was trial and error. With my little knowledge i wasn't able to get anything to work and I couldn't search the right things because i didn't know the names and stuff. I tried over and over again and finally understood it. But not everyone has the patience for this.
Many people register and never come back again. Of course there is not way knowing if this was because of complexity or something else

And yes, we have a ton of tools. Good tools. And for everyone wanting to level hack those tools are enough. But as said above, the start is very hard (in my opinion) and if you want to improve as a hacker in general, things start to get very complicated very fast.

People move on to other game or other things when they get bored or loose patience, but those who don't know how much time and effort it takes to get a good hack going. (Skawo and Newer Team with NewerDS or MF64 with Endless Earth)

This is mostly just some rambling thoughts so if anyone feels like they need to argue or add to feel free...
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"I strikingly thought you would know how but it clearly seems you have no knowledge of hacking" - MiiU 2017
Posted on 08-05-18, 11:03 pm
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Yeah, exactly my thoughts. No real reason to hack NSMBDS if you can do even better things with 2/W/U. NSMBDS isn't yet retro enough to make it as attractive as let's say SMB3 or SMW.

So maybe the addition of NSMB2 hacking to this place might actually be a good idea
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Posted on 08-05-18, 11:09 pm
(Words)

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Posted by RicBent
So maybe the addition of NSMB2 hacking to this place might actually be a good idea

Honestly, adding NSMB2 + SMM3DS would be a pretty good investment.
Having all the handheld Marios in one place seems like a good move especially considering that they're almost all compatible in a way.
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"I strikingly thought you would know how but it clearly seems you have no knowledge of hacking" - MiiU 2017
Posted on 08-05-18, 11:24 pm
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I am a bit busy with univ atm but I guess I will setup a NSMB2 forum asap if the rest of the staff agree with this
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Posted on 08-06-18, 01:22 am
Wendy Koopa
Once upon a time there was a tiger.

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frankly.. new super mario bros, is old. if you started making a good hack now, it would take you over a year to complete. your audience is already mostly gone. outside of other fellow content creators (i.e. people posting in this thread) you'll get mild interest for all the time you put in making it.
if you can code, you're better off making your own game, free of limitations.


see, I could make a hack right now.. and in a sense, I am. except extremely slowly.
what I like the most about NSMB hacking is music hacks. considering the amount of custom music I make and refine, I could make a hack with one new track per level thanks to the new tools.
more easily than making all the levels for the hack, at least.

music is not all there is to a hack, yet even that takes time. sorry for rambling about myself, but let's just say I've been pouring my time into everything and anything BUT that as of late. I can't really change that fact, it's no makeshift excuse.


the standards for a "good" hack seem to have skyrocketed, and not only because of NewerDS. sure, you can make a hack with only custom levels and a few custom tilesets for fanciness. but you're not gonna be satisfied with it.
some of us want to make hacks with content that was not done before, or at least differ from previous hacks.

with the decreasing amounts of time you can pour into making it, the decreasing audience, the lack of tools to go by, it's hard to get progress fast. to make it work you have to plan around it, manage your time and bear the responsibility of your own project. it's not just merely making levels for fun when you feel like, if you're making effort to make it good.


among the ROMhacking boards I know, NSMBHD's decline was very obvious and yet not the worst I've witnessed. consider the fact that a good chunk of the regulars are still around and do respond, it's not yet a ghost town. only that there's not much effort to actively make projects anymore.

so yeah, that's where the problem lies; this game is old, and interest for it can't last forever.

disclaimer, I'm not saying we can't do anything.
but we can't bring it back to its "former glory".
Posted on 08-06-18, 08:58 am
Ninji
W1 out :)

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Posted by Thierry
(...)with the decreasing amounts of time you can pour into making it, the decreasing audience, the lack of tools to go by, it's hard to get progress fast. to make it work you have to plan around it, manage your time and bear the responsibility of your own project. it's not just merely making levels for fun when you feel like, if you're making effort to make it good.(...)


i get your point about the decreasing audience and the seemingly higher standards for a good hack but what do you mean with decreasing amount of time?
I can just talk about my experience of course and the things i saw happen but NewerDS was years in development and Endless Earth is still in it. And the hack i am working on has been my main project for a bit less than a year and i am still just in the first world. And I will take as much time as I need to finish that in the best way i can do. But that's just me, maybe others don't take enough time, leading to bad levels/hacks and therefore loosing patience and fun
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New Super Luigi DS v1.0///// YT (mostly music/remixes)
Posted on 08-06-18, 09:20 am
Wendy Koopa
Once upon a time there was a tiger.

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when you grow up, you lock on stuff to do for your life.
with side-projects to keep up in the meantime, your time naturally decreases. neverending school and jobs keep you fairly busy, so you want to enjoy your free time.

it does depend on who you are and what you do, but not everybody's free. there's also periods where you focus on getting stuff done like I am doing right now.
Posted on 08-06-18, 06:33 pm
Ninji
W1 out :)

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ah ok, now i get what you mean.
Yeah, I enjoyed my free time with a lot of league of legends and hacking. But of course not everybody is like me in that way.
I agree to your point.
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New Super Luigi DS v1.0///// YT (mostly music/remixes)
Posted on 08-06-18, 06:52 pm
Pokey
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I like to spend my time working on cars and model trains!
___________________________________________________________


New Super Mario Bros. U DS:
https://nsmbhd.net/thread/4444-new-super-mario-bros-u-ds-demo-release/
Pages: 123 »