I polished up the hub world map in my game a lot, and I recorded me walking around in it! I really like how the town is looking so far, though there's still lots of things I want to add.

I'm already using about 60% of the tiles I'll have available and there's still plenty of space for more details. I also have lots of unused palette colors I'll want to put somewhere.

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Now after spending a ton of time designing buildings and making a rough draft of a hub world map, I've got something that feels complete-ish, just unpolished. And now I have it in the game itself; you can walk around the map but that's it so far.

Feels like a huge step forward because I've been working on this part of the game for a pretty long time at this point.

The map conversion does a whole lot of magic stuff where I just export the map as PNGs and provide palettes.

I've got moving platforms in my game now - both ones that follow lines and ones that don't. I ended up using red-and-white stripes for the lines themselves because they seemed like the best way to use the palette I wanted to use to make something distinct but not garish.

After a bunch of manually entering frame data, I've got sword swinging - for the sword ability I wanted to have! It can't actually damage enemies yet, so I'll do that next, and then I need to add the ability to throw the sword - because this is supposed to be a Crusader of Centy reference after all. I'm going to have it rotate smoothly as it flies through the air.

I've been looking forward to implementing the knuckle sandwich enemy and now I think it's all done? The signs it seeks out and destroys could definitely use an animation when it breaks though. Now I get to look forward to making puzzles with this enemy...

Extended my Mode 7 previewer thing ( novasquirrel.github.io/Mode7Pr ) to let you generate tables with it too, for people who don't know languages besides assembly. It doesn't try to use the HDMA repeat feature yet, or support indirect HDMA, but it can use scanline counts correctly.

It still feels like it'd kinda be a shame to go for an overhead view on my Mode 7 levels, so I'm experimenting with having the gameplay not grid aligned again. With acceleration it seems to work out well I think?

If I do this I'll have to try and design levels around allowing for wider turns. Also actually implement wall collision that takes unaligned movement into account.

Particles make blowing things up really enjoyable. I love that the SNES's sprite limits are high enough that I can put in pretty much all the particles I'd ever want.

I think I'm gonna dive back into working on Nova 2 as my primary thing again and just put my side projects on the side. I've been away from it for far too long and it brings me a lot of joy.

I implemented the bomb ability, and made it act more like bombs in Kirby Super Star so they're faster.

You can still place bombs in the air like in Pocket Bomberman, for the same sort of tricks. I tried having it where the bombs got placed directly underneath you but that was vastly overpowered. But maybe overpowered (but fun!) mechanics call for being made into temporary powerups!

Also the throwing animation needs replaced, but at this point every animation does.

I've got block pushing, and pushed blocks can become dirt like in Chip's Challenge. Still don't have support for blocks sliding on ice and such, but I'll get to that later.

I implemented the gliders and lightweight spaceships from Conway's Game of Life again. I already had the glider ability but now you can actually obtain it legitimately.

I implemented something that draws sprites onto the Mode 7 layer in software by copying the graphics underneath them and pasting the sprite on top. I tried making them move more smoothly but that didn't quite work out, because that meant re-rendering every sprite every frame and that added up to too much.

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Been working on trying to get my mode 7 levels actually in a game-like state so I can actually have some real puzzles. I entered Nova the Squirrel 2 into SAGE 2020 and I want to make a strong impression there.

I implemented blocks that can have their solidity toggled with switches. They have different symbols on them so they're not only differentiated by color.

They required me to support blocks that are only conditionally solid in the engine, which was solved by letting blocks call a routine when their solidity is checked. Nova 1 solved it by just putting block attributes like solidity in a table in RAM.

I combined the fade and iris effect, and now I've got the door transition effect I'd been hoping for!

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I implemented doors, and I played around with adding screen transition effects. A fade looks good, and I dunno how a fade+mosaic effect looks, though it looked fine when Super Mario World did it.

I also played with doing a circle "iris" effect, like Kirby's Dream Land 3 does, and I've got that working after a lot of trial and error. I can reuse that circle code for other effects too.

I added some improved flowers that use their own palette instead of trying to use the always-available palette. I also made it so that grass animates slightly when stepped on.

Here's some boulders that fall, and fake being solid by putting invisible walls behind themselves. They also save where they moved to by modifying the list that's used to determine what actors to spawn in while scrolling.

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I implemented the arrow blocks (inspired by a Neopets game) from Nova the Squirrel 1 into its sequel. I'm going to have a lot of fun with these because they were one of my favorite game mechanics.

Decided to play around with HDMA, and the gradient and parallax makes the simple background look cooler for sure. I found out I actually had a lot of the infrastructure already set up for per-background effects, so that was less work for me.

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