Author Topic: Mega Man 9's Secret  (Read 12454 times)

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Offline Flame

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #25 on: February 24, 2012, 07:47:44 AM »
Again, don't 9 and 10 already break NES limits?  I recall something about the game already using a few more colors or more color combinations or something, than it should have been able to on the NES.
If you are already going to break some of the limitations, then at least use that to make the sprite look better.

And besides, color limitations aside, 10's Bass sprite is still pretty bad.

You can still take the fan sprite, fit it to the colors used in Bass' MM 10 sprite, and the result is still better.



Left: Fan sprite. Right: Official sprite. Middle: Altered using the official one's colors and a few of the elements it surpasses the fan one on.
...When Larry the reploid accountant goes maverick of his own accord, he's certainly formidable during tax season, but he isn't going to provide X the challenge needed to make him grow as a warrior and reach his potential.

Offline Turian

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #26 on: February 24, 2012, 07:51:25 AM »
While I am here, how about that secret? Skill said there was a secret in MM10 also. I hope someone finds them soon.

Offline Zan

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #27 on: February 24, 2012, 09:08:48 AM »
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No one cares how many colors it has

I care. Proper color limit application makes the core of the NES aesthetics.

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If it was so important then why break certain limits but respect others? If you're going to say that they had to deliver a believable appearance, then why do they allow some sprites to display 5 colors and why are there more than 16 colors on screen at once in some places?

Both games are quite faithful in terms of NES limits, if you ask me. They didn't seem to really care when it came to conglomerations like the fortress bosses, which would appear to do the impossible, but there's no easy way to tell whether a smart trick couldn't make it possible anyway.

You seem somewhat confused at how the NES handles colors, though. There's no hard limit of "5 colors per sprite" or "16 colors on screen. It is instead eight four-color palettes, four for sprites, four for background use. While the player character is limited to two palettes (body and face). There's one extra palette available for bosses and enemies through the re-use of Rock's face palette alongside their own two. A sprite like SplashWoman, for example, may look like it has way too many colors, but actually makes incredibly smart use of what the NES could do. You just need to make sure everything on screen re-uses the same colors. As proof of Inti doing so, recall that Concrete and Plug stages were once ported over into a romhack of Rockman4, stage enemies and all.

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You can still take the fan sprite, fit it to the colors used in Bass' MM 10 sprite, and the result is still better.

That "official" sprite is also incorrectly colored:

http://www.sprites-inc.co.uk/files/Classic/Bass/BF8/bass10sheet.png

The gem can't be purple under NES palette restrictions. It has to reuse the face or fin colors.

That said, if you'd recolor yours to do just that it would definitely be improved in the chest armor department. But then, you gotta be careful with flickering. All that extra white leads to more sprites on the same scanline.

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Offline zuschzero

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #28 on: February 24, 2012, 01:55:53 PM »
Some notes about MM9 & 10 + NES limitations:

- The flame dragoon miniboss seems a bit impossible, way too many sprites at once.
- The first fortress boss in MM9. There are background, so the spike balls and the faces must be sprites. Way too much.
- The rocket-powered soccerballs would be tricky for the NES to handle, without too much lag. One at a screen would be okay, but 4-5 at once????
- The yellow platforms at Crap Puncher must be sprites, because it would be impossible with background scrolling.

Offline Zan

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #29 on: February 24, 2012, 02:50:08 PM »
It's really hard to estimate what does and does not work without actually running it on NES. I'm guessing though that the first fortress boss from 9 is actually doable by virtue of each sprite being on a different scanline. However, the slowdown might be comparable to the wall-mounted turrets from 2.

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Offline zuschzero

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #30 on: February 24, 2012, 03:50:06 PM »
However, the slowdown might be comparable to the wall-mounted turrets from 2.

That's easily doable, the entire scene is a background, and when two parts start to assembling, those two parts becomes sprites. The effect is similar to how all the devils works.

Offline Turian

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #31 on: February 24, 2012, 06:04:02 PM »
I care. Proper color limit application makes the core of the NES aesthetics.

Both games are quite faithful in terms of NES limits, if you ask me. They didn't seem to really care when it came to conglomerations like the fortress bosses, which would appear to do the impossible, but there's no easy way to tell whether a smart trick couldn't make it possible anyway.

You seem somewhat confused at how the NES handles colors, though. There's no hard limit of "5 colors per sprite" or "16 colors on screen. It is instead eight four-color palettes, four for sprites, four for background use. While the player character is limited to two palettes (body and face). There's one extra palette available for bosses and enemies through the re-use of Rock's face palette alongside their own two. A sprite like SplashWoman, for example, may look like it has way too many colors, but actually makes incredibly smart use of what the NES could do. You just need to make sure everything on screen re-uses the same colors. As proof of Inti doing so, recall that Concrete and Plug stages were once ported over into a romhack of Rockman4, stage enemies and all.

That "official" sprite is also incorrectly colored:

http://www.sprites-inc.co.uk/files/Classic/Bass/BF8/bass10sheet.png

The gem can't be purple under NES palette restrictions. It has to reuse the face or fin colors.

That said, if you'd recolor yours to do just that it would definitely be improved in the chest armor department. But then, you gotta be careful with flickering. All that extra white leads to more sprites on the same scanline.

You're in a minority of people that want to see lazy edits instead of original works. All made possible by gripping to the idea that if the NES couldn't do it, then the game shouldn't try. Which is absurd. You can still have an "8bit artstyle" without clinging to archaic hardware  limitations.

Offline Align

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #32 on: February 24, 2012, 07:33:28 PM »
I wouldn't say working under more restrictions would be more lazy...

Offline Flame

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #33 on: February 24, 2012, 07:51:38 PM »
I dunno, Zan... Sounds more like excuses to support your argument IMO. "Oh it's hard to tell if the NES could do it or not..."

...When Larry the reploid accountant goes maverick of his own accord, he's certainly formidable during tax season, but he isn't going to provide X the challenge needed to make him grow as a warrior and reach his potential.

Offline KoiDrake

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #34 on: February 24, 2012, 08:17:57 PM »
I still think the one used on MM10 is better, that chest plate doesn't look right when you see it in the original size, it makes the character look cluttered and weird. On these sprites the more details you try to add the worst it'll be.

As fo the whole 8-bit thing, this has been discussed already, if you want to keep going with it then take it to another thread.

Offline Flame

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #35 on: February 24, 2012, 09:36:20 PM »
That's because the character was not designed with an 8 bit system in mind. Bass was designed for the SNES, which could display him much better. Megaman and Protoman are simple designs with less armor plating for that reason. But that's just too bad, if you are going to put him in an NES game with pseudo-NES limitations, you still have to make the sprite resemble the character as properly it can, which 10's sprite doesnt.
...When Larry the reploid accountant goes maverick of his own accord, he's certainly formidable during tax season, but he isn't going to provide X the challenge needed to make him grow as a warrior and reach his potential.

Offline Turian

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #36 on: February 24, 2012, 11:18:13 PM »
Is anyone keeping track of all of the secrets in MM9 and MM10? I know Skill has said we haven't found it yet, but it would still be nice to have a resource to look at to know if the thing you stumbled upon has been discovered yet. There are some pretty obscure things in those games.

And also, HOLY [parasitic bomb], Mega Man 9 has been out for 3 years.

Offline Flame

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #37 on: February 25, 2012, 02:14:45 AM »
You could always browse around Sprites Inc and see if they have any old topics on the matter.
...When Larry the reploid accountant goes maverick of his own accord, he's certainly formidable during tax season, but he isn't going to provide X the challenge needed to make him grow as a warrior and reach his potential.

Offline VixyNyan

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #38 on: February 25, 2012, 03:37:53 AM »
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Offline Turian

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #39 on: February 25, 2012, 04:20:36 AM »
Thanks for that. I also found an archive on Ask Capcom. Good god, do I really want to open this can of worms AGAIN?

Offline KoiDrake

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #40 on: February 25, 2012, 04:33:45 AM »
That's because the character was not designed with an 8 bit system in mind. Bass was designed for the SNES, which could display him much better. Megaman and Protoman are simple designs with less armor plating for that reason. But that's just too bad, if you are going to put him in an NES game with pseudo-NES limitations, you still have to make the sprite resemble the character as properly it can, which 10's sprite doesnt.
What are you talking about? Bass's sprite can still be recognized as himself, and that should be enough, you are just nitpicking about small details that don't matter on that sprite size and on the character overall. The whole point of these sprites is to add only the necessary details for the character to be recognizable. More details are pointless and generally look bad.

The designers even incorporated most of the details that show up on that fan sprite (chest plate, gems and whatever else there is) when they did that easter egg on MM9, and yet they decided to remove them when they did Bass again for MM10. There is a reason for that, it wasn't just a random decision, otherwise they could have easily taken their sprite, add the colors and go drink some coffee. And I'm not even touching to the whole color palette issue that you guys are discussing. The lines make Bass cluttered already, and they did a good job on fixing that for MM10.

Bass looking a lot like Megaman and stuff like that are other thing, dunno if they were lazy or they didn't wanted to risk making a scratch Bass without fans bitching about him not being on style, I really don't care much about it, he fits right on the game anyway.

Is anyone keeping track of all of the secrets in MM9 and MM10? I know Skill has said we haven't found it yet, but it would still be nice to have a resource to look at to know if the thing you stumbled upon has been discovered yet. There are some pretty obscure things in those games.

And also, HOLY [parasitic bomb], Mega Man 9 has been out for 3 years.
Not really, it would be a nice idea to list every little thing that has been posted on that Capcom Unity thread. There were a few things mentioned there that no one seemed to know (like some Duck Tales tiles used for Fakeman's stage, among other things)

Offline Mirby

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #41 on: February 25, 2012, 06:53:45 AM »
What are you talking about? Bass's sprite can still be recognized as himself, and that should be enough, you are just nitpicking about small details that don't matter on that sprite size and on the character overall. The whole point of these sprites is to add only the necessary details for the character to be recognizable. More details are pointless and generally look bad.

The designers even incorporated most of the details that show up on that fan sprite (chest plate, gems and whatever else there is) when they did that easter egg on MM9, and yet they decided to remove them when they did Bass again for MM10. There is a reason for that, it wasn't just a random decision, otherwise they could have easily taken their sprite, add the colors and go drink some coffee. And I'm not even touching to the whole color palette issue that you guys are discussing. The lines make Bass cluttered already, and they did a good job on fixing that for MM10.

Bass looking a lot like Megaman and stuff like that are other thing, dunno if they were lazy or they didn't wanted to risk making a scratch Bass without fans bitching about him not being on style, I really don't care much about it, he fits right on the game anyway.
Not really, it would be a nice idea to list every little thing that has been posted on that Capcom Unity thread. There were a few things mentioned there that no one seemed to know (like some Duck Tales tiles used for Fakeman's stage, among other things)

You're talking to the guy who has strong opinions on the evolution of Zero's helmet. I don't think you'll get far. XD

Also, interesting tidbit.
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Offline Zan

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #42 on: February 25, 2012, 10:12:59 AM »
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That's easily doable, the entire scene is a background, and when two parts start to assembling, those two parts becomes sprites. The effect is similar to how all the devils works.

Weren't you talking about the first fortress boss in Rockman9? That's the faced turrets with the spike balls. Upon reviewing the actual battle, I notice there's definitely one palette too many in use once the red charging ones make their appearence, but the amount of sprites on screen shouldn't present any real issues beyond some minor flickering. With some simple alternations and tricks, the battle is possible to recreate.

As for the Twin Devil. That one is positively insane to pull off, but definitely somewhat feasible. It's just that the amount of flickering and slowdown cannot be determined without programming it into an actual NES.

Quote
You're in a minority of people that want to see lazy edits instead of original works. All made possible by gripping to the idea that if the NES couldn't do it, then the game shouldn't try. Which is absurd. You can still have an "8bit artstyle" without clinging to archaic hardware  limitations.

You're thinking of this in reverse. By working within those "archaic" hardware limitations, you're forced to employ creative solutions to common game design problems which defined the very core aesthetics of all games on the platform. You have to know what the system can do, then bring out its potential to the max. Blatantly ignoring that doesn't make for better sprites, it just needlessly clutters with detail and color and makes things stands out like a sore thumb.

If you're going to defy the limitations that define the NES, why not go for 16 color sprites, or full-blown HD for that matter?

Quote
I dunno, Zan... Sounds more like excuses to support your argument IMO. "Oh it's hard to tell if the NES could do it or not..."

Well, it's not that the NES couldn't do it. It's just a given that Forte with a more extensive white overlay than Rock (spread over his entire body compared to just his face) would sooner promote flickering and slowdown.  This is not something that can be helped, but it's certainly something that needs to be be minimized; especially since the limits are further strained by him having rapid fire capabilities.

That said, they totally could have made a better sprite, but over-coloring as in the previous fanmade one, isn't the way to go. This new rendition is nice, albeit maybe over-detailed. Good job, nonetheless.

By the way, please fix the background transparency next to his hands.



 

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Offline Blackhook

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #43 on: February 25, 2012, 01:23:15 PM »
It's like the Star wars movies. Know why the first 3 were good? LIMITATIONS. That's right, the creators were limited and had to work around their limitations.
Then Georgie got too much freedom...

Offline Mirby

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #44 on: February 25, 2012, 06:31:56 PM »
It's like the Star wars movies. Know why the first 3 were good? LIMITATIONS. That's right, the creators were limited and had to work around their limitations.
Then Georgie got too much freedom...

I've learned myself that limitations are conducive to creativity by working on remixes. Having to work within the restraints of the source track is definitely limiting, but also gives a lot of options.

And to bring it back to MM, consider the fact that the NES is severely limiting in both graphics and audio. The NES could only handle 3 consecutive sounds, and yet we have timeless tracks in those games. Limitations are good, and working within them is a huge learning experience. Anything else is just doing whatever you want.
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Offline Turian

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #45 on: February 25, 2012, 06:40:37 PM »
Weren't you talking about the first fortress boss in Rockman9? That's the faced turrets with the spike balls. Upon reviewing the actual battle, I notice there's definitely one palette too many in use once the red charging ones make their appearence, but the amount of sprites on screen shouldn't present any real issues beyond some minor flickering. With some simple alternations and tricks, the battle is possible to recreate.

As for the Twin Devil. That one is positively insane to pull off, but definitely somewhat feasible. It's just that the amount of flickering and slowdown cannot be determined without programming it into an actual NES.

You're thinking of this in reverse. By working within those "archaic" hardware limitations, you're forced to employ creative solutions to common game design problems which defined the very core aesthetics of all games on the platform. You have to know what the system can do, then bring out its potential to the max. Blatantly ignoring that doesn't make for better sprites, it just needlessly clutters with detail and color and makes things stands out like a sore thumb.

If you're going to defy the limitations that define the NES, why not go for 16 color sprites, or full-blown HD for that matter?

Well, it's not that the NES couldn't do it. It's just a given that Forte with a more extensive white overlay than Rock (spread over his entire body compared to just his face) would sooner promote flickering and slowdown.  This is not something that can be helped, but it's certainly something that needs to be be minimized; especially since the limits are further strained by him having rapid fire capabilities.

That said, they totally could have made a better sprite, but over-coloring as in the previous fanmade one, isn't the way to go. This new rendition is nice, albeit maybe over-detailed. Good job, nonetheless.

By the way, please fix the background transparency next to his hands.


We can just agree to disagree about working in limitations. But I see we both agree that a better sprite could have been made, and that is the only real point I have been trying to make. Things like black backgrounds, uninspired sprite work, things like that, could have been made better. I'm not saying they should break limitations at all times, because then like you pointed out, why not just go HD? However, they could have thrown an 8-bit background in the black space and still had the same number of characters on screen at once with the current gen hardware's power. Take a look at Mega Man Unlimited, it uses an 8-bit style but still makes things interesting without fully breaking immersion.

Offline OBJECTION MAN

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #46 on: February 25, 2012, 09:59:37 PM »
Take a look at Mega Man Unlimited, it uses an 8-bit style but still makes things interesting without fully breaking immersion.

I can't agree here at all. They take way too many liberties, and there are countless things that just scream "not authentic" in the whole presentation. Its obvious that it is not following the conventions at all, and even at a glance you can tell it doesn't try. If it doesn't even bother to try, it's already broken immersion.

It all rolls back to what Zan was saying; why bother using NES aesthetics if you aren't going to accurately represent it? Might as well just make a new style, or use something from another console era. Otherwise it just comes off as cheap, and lazy, since they obviously didn't care to do it right anyway.

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Offline Blackhook

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #47 on: February 25, 2012, 11:29:00 PM »
As long as it is fun...

Offline Mirby

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #48 on: February 25, 2012, 11:37:44 PM »
As long as it is fun...
"While everyone's ranting about the minor flaws of a video game that's just fun to play, I'll just sit-down, relax, and watch as all of the troubles fly past me while I just enjoy a simple video game that brings me joy with each new experience I receive."

It's a quote I heard once, and fully believe.
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Offline Flame

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Re: Mega Man 9's Secret
« Reply #49 on: February 25, 2012, 11:51:26 PM »
But-but... Helmets... And Chest plates...
...When Larry the reploid accountant goes maverick of his own accord, he's certainly formidable during tax season, but he isn't going to provide X the challenge needed to make him grow as a warrior and reach his potential.