So.... Like.... Well, y'see.... Why is it impossible to write a single sentence about anything Mario-related without making some kind of joke about those fat Italian plumbers with a penchant for athletics? It's stereotyping. Those who've seen the cartoons will see the point. "Oooh, look at-a me-a! I eat-a da pasta and-a bounce mucho high! When's-a your Dolmio Day?" Bright colors, semi-imaginative characters, and level design so simple a kid could have made it, yet with puzzles that are so obvious most adults won't get them in one shot. It's what platform games are made of, and it's why they're enjoyed by people of all ages. None of this dark, broody stuff as seen in most modern games, but also not the brain-melting pre-school elements seen in most kid's games.
Jedi Academy isn't a platform game. However, one good thing about platform games, is that their level designers drew upon a good dose of lateral thinking. With little to no adaptation, levels from platformers can have their concept changed with ease. Which is exactly what we see here.
First up, we have the... er... Wingcap Stage. With neither a wing nor a cap in sight, but there are some rather psychadelic rainbow rings. This stage clearly wasn't designed with anything but SM64 in mind, as it's impossible to play a serious duel match on, whether you use sabers or guns. Upon stepping away from the edge of the central platform, you'll be boosted up through the rings and continue to bounce there. You either continue bouncing in that central zone, or you try to move out of it and die. If you like bouncy castles, this map is for you, but you won't get much JKA gameplay out of it. I don't recall seeing this stage in the game when I last played it, and it's damn nigh impossible to find ref pics of over the internet, but from the few shots I could find, the design looks to be spot-on.
Next up, the Courtyard. This area seems to have become as iconic in gaming as the Green Hill Zone. This map, unlike the previous, has no oddities. What you see is pretty much what you get - it's a balanced map, good for a duel or two, bit small and lacking cover for gunfights. The trees don't really fit in with the theme, but I know how much of a pain it is to make new models, so that can be overlooked. Only other problem I see is again purely aesthetic, and that's the water shader - this shader, in all cases where it has been used, gives off a fugly blue aura to anything nearby. I believe there's an alternate water shader in the assets, might want to find and use that one instead. Other than that, the map is simple enough, lacks any problematic bugs, and looks pretty much how it's N64 counterpart did.
Third and final map is Bowser's Dark World Arena. Pretty dark, floor has a blue tiled pattern, and there are yellow lights around the edge. I can't really say anything about this one - what is there to say, really? One observation I did make is that it was much much brighter in SM64. Aside from that it hits the mark, and is bug-free. Pretty impossible to have bugs in a map this simple, really.
On the whole, the pack will hit the spot for SM64 fans. While only two of the levels are truly functional for gameplay, I guess the Wingcap stage could be fun too, if you like bouncy castles.
Accurate, bug-free, just what the doctor ordered for you Super Mario 64 fans out there.
Bot Routing: No Custom Textures: Yes Custom Audio: Yes Custom Models: No
*********************************** Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast *********************************** TITLE: Mario 64 Duel Pack AUTHOR: BearWithaGun E-MAIL**: email@example.com FILENAME: SM64DuelPack.pk3 FILESIZE: 5.38 mb DATE RELEASED: 16 June 2007 CREDITS: Credits go to Nintendo for the original design, to Reelo for the cloud sky and for helping me test the map, and to Cloudscapes who created the hi-res textures. INSTALLATION INSTRUCTIONS: Put the SM64DuelPack.pk3 into the Base folder (Star Wars JK II Jedi Outcast\GameData\base) DESCRIPTION: Here are three maps from Super Mario 64. I came across these maps after having forgotten about them and figured that I should send them in. They were originally going to be part of a Mario 64 Castle map that I was working on with another mapper, and I'm not sure if we are still going to finish it or not. The pack includes the wingcap stage, the castle courtyard, and the bowser in the dark world arena. BUGS: None that I know of, but feel free to inform me if you find any. THIS MODIFICATION IS NOT MADE, DISTRIBUTED, OR SUPPORTED BY ACTIVISION, RAVEN, OR LUCASARTS ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY LLC. ELEMENTS TM & © LUCASARTS ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY LLC AND/OR ITS LICENSORS.
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