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Super Mario War


  1. About
  2. Map development - Overall
  3. Map development - Hotkeys
  4. Skin development - Overall


Super Mario War (totally not to be confused with Super Mario World) is a one-screen battle platform game. To sum it up, imagine Super Smash Bros with more traditional Mario physics and gameplay; or else, SMB3's battle mode turned into a full-fledged deathmatch - you get the idea.

The active development of SMWar met its' rise on 2006 and has fully stopped on 2009, after Florian Hufsky, one of the lead developers, commited suicide, but his legacy lives on (at least not on 72dpiarmy which became deserted not so long ago).

And it's also notable for having more ports than your grandma can count, with the most popular being Mac, Linux, Wii and Xbox (the original one). It's not the full list, but everything else on it might be based either on a VERY outdated version or be ridiculously buggy.

There's also a huge modability factor (less so for the gameplay, despite SMW is opensource), ranging from custom battle arenas, through skins and tilesets, and ending with worlds that can be played for eons. Oh, and there's no netplay. At least, not now.

Version 1.8. Beta 2 can be downloaded here

Map development - Overall

NOTE: Since smwar is not an allowed BotB format, all the map compos are hosted on at the moment.

The maps on SMWar are no bigger than one screen (complete with wraparounds on left, right and bottom) - but you still can put a lot of stuff on it. Kuribo shoes, throwable blocks, platforms, Bullets Bills - you name it. No, there are no ladders or slopes, since you ask.

Tile-wise, the maps consist of four layers, prioritized as: bottom BG -> top BG -> bottom FG -> top FG. Keep in mind that all the foreground tiles actually overlap the player, so if you want the player to be seen, use the background layer instead. Also keep in mind that there can be only one collision detection type per tile, regardless of how many layers you actually use.

Vanilla SMWar has a bunch of tilesets, one or multiple of which can be used at once.

Map development - Hotkeys

* F1 lists all the hotkeys you can use in the level editor.

* Ctrl+N creates a new map, complete with the name entry prompt.
* Ctrl+S saves an existing map.
* PgUp/PgDn scrolls through available maps, but you might as well use F for a quick search.

* T switches to Tile Mode and lets you to select a tile or a bunch of those (for the latter, drag the mouse while holding the left mouse button). Arrow keys scroll the tileset, PgUp/PgDn navigate through available tilesets.
* A is the same thing, but for the animated tiles.
* I allows you to put interactive/carryable items.
* O allows you to put static and throwable item blocks - among them are Question, Note and four-colored "!" and "dotted" blocks with switches to turn those on and off.
* K allows you to set the properties of a static item block - make sure your cursor floats above one.

* M engages the Move Mode in which you can select a bunch of tiles and move it somewhere else. You can also select it and press the C key to copy your selection.
* Z sets the No Item Spawn area, in case if you feel that items in special game modes can't be reached by player at all.
* X sets the No Player Spawn area, in case if you don't want the player to spawn above deadly spikes or supercheap weaponry.
* L lets you to set the map's collisions. Note that two arrows up mean that the tile will be half-solid, i.e. you can jump on it from above and then jump right down. As for the many flavors of death tiles, check out the following list:
**** Yellow death tiles are normal (items, shells and creeps don't die).
**** Blue death tiles are slippery (just in case you'll be shielded).
**** Black death tiles are superdangerous (items, shells, creeps and starred players all die on those).
**** Green death tiles are non-solid (players die on those as usual, but items, shells and creeps pass through).

* W allows you to set warp pipes. The arrows should point where the player COMES OUT of pipe.
* P allows you to set platforms of three types: A-to-B, continious and spinning.
* H allows you to set hazards, such as rotodisks, Bullet Bills and variations of Piranha Plants.

* R lets you set the music category (check your local music pack).
* E lets you change floating eyecandy (i.e. animated stuff like rain, leaves, ghosts, clouds).
* B shows the thumbnails of all available background pictures - placed immediately under all the tiles.
* G just cycles through the available background pictures.

Skin development - Overall

SMWar skins consist of exactly six frames of animation:

FRAME 1 - stand // walk 1
FRAME 2 - fire // walk 2
FRAME 3 - jump
FRAME 4 - skid // raccoon tail swing // cape swing
FRAME 5 - dead
FRAME 6 - stomped

When making those, it's highly advised that your skid sprite looks left - else your guy might look like he has a huge wang, even for one frame no one will ever notice.

The real resolution is 192x32 - but it's mostly advised that you put those to 96x16 and upscale your result later. That's how you do a so-called "lo-res skin". "Hi-res skins" use all 192x32 without up/downscaling, but don't look really well with vanilla SMWar (most of those skins, at least).

Also, be considerate to include at least two things in your skin that will make it more comfortable to use:
1) an outline which indicates the presence of on-spawn shield;
2) team colors (by default, it's always, ALWAYS red).

Meanwhile, here are the RGB values inside the SMWar's palette that will be replaced ingame, according to the description. Any colors beyond that can be freely used, but will not be registered by the game anyhoooo. Use it as a little reference sheet.

R: 255 // G: 0 // B: 255

R: 128 // G: 128 // B: 128

R: 128 // G: 0 // B: 128

R: 128 // G: 0 // B: 0
R: 192 // G: 0 // B: 0
R: 255 // G: 0 // B: 0

R: 64 // G: 64 // B: 255
R: 128 // G: 128 // B: 255
R: 192 // G: 192 // B: 255

R: 128 // G: 128 // B: 0
R: 192 // G: 192 // B: 0
R: 255 // G: 255 // B: 0

R: 0 // G: 128 // B: 128
R: 0 // G: 192 // B: 192
R: 0 // G: 255 // B: 255

R: 0 // G: 128 // B: 0
R: 0 // G: 192 // B: 0
R: 0 // G: 255 // B: 0