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So, Normal mode and Content mode has been a blast, and I can't wait for Hard mode to be released. Just one thing though. Regarding balancing stuff, I feel that most extra bosses (if not all of them) should have double or more of their HP in normal mode. Anyways, that's all I wanted to let out there. So yeah, I'm hyped for what Hard mode will have to offer.
Here's my thoughts of the middle class difficulty of the final version of SMRPG Armageddon. I'm not a reviewer and I'm the worst at explaining things, so bare with me here. Let's start with what I think of all the areas. Bowser's Keep (start of the game): I like how the tutorial battle is now optional, and that you have to be consistent with both timing your attacks and your blocks to beat it. My only real concern was the fact that Bowser's fire is no longer as lethal as it was previously. Mario's Pad: Not much going on here, but Yoshi always saying his long text if he doesn't have anything to give you kinda bothers me. Mushroom Way: The Hammer Bros are WAYYYYY too easy. Although, I like that they are now 2 instead of 1 like in vanilla. Mushroom Kingdom: The Master's sprite really looks out of place. He already looked exatcly like he did in the game that he's from (paper mario) where he's flat, so making him 3d really didn't suit him. Ignoring that, I like the new sprite. Bandit's Way: Croco suffers from the same problem as the Hammer Bros, way too easy. Mushroom kingdom (raided): Fixing Mack skip was a good addition (not that I could ever perform it myself) and being rewarded 20 galaxy coins from helping all the citizens was also really nice. Kero Sewers: I always jump on all the boos to get outta there as fast as possible, so I can't really say anything about this place, sorry. Midas River: NO! Tadpole Pond: Being able to exchange normal coins for frog coins was a good addition. Rose Way: Why was Amazy Dayzee changed? WHY??? Rose Town: The galaxy coin in the shop is evil. Forest Maze: Bowyer killing you with arrow rain unless you block it is genius. Ice Cave: This place being blocked off at first is nice, I guess. Moleville: Not instantly being thrown into a minecart after jumping through the hole at the top was a comforting change. Booster Pass: One of the hidden chests here is almost impossible to find until you get the item hunter. Booster Tower: The shop being moved to the top which resulted in the apprentice fight being removed was sad. Why can't you fight him first and then after the fight make him open a shop? Booster Hill: I used to hate this place, until I learned that you can get galaxy coins here. Marrymore: Being able to farm silver apples by sleeping in the SUITE needs to be changed/removed. Star Hill: Why must Rosalina tease you with a hidden chest :l Seaside Town (pre-yaridovich): let's skip this place for now. Sea: I could be wrong, but I think Kyogre is already in its room from the start. Sunken Ship: This place can be a nightmare. Seaside Town (post-Yaridovich): As of writing this review, you can refight Yaridovich after losing to a Long Gui (Long Gui can be fought in Seaside Town after beating Smithy) Land's End: The new prize you get for getting a good time on the cliff scaling mini-game (or whatever it is you're doing) is much better than it was before. Monstro Town: I sure loved being able to walk into Magus' room and being hit by Dark Matter Bean Valley: @Darkkefka MOVE THE BEE IN THE SECOND SECTION OF PIPES! If anybody knows a way to not be ambushed by this fucking bee, please tell me how. Nimbus Land: Here's something that I both love AND hate about version 9 normal mode: I didn't need to be level 80 or above to even stand a chance against Birdo. (Here's an interesting fact about Birdo: In the manual for Super Mario Bros 2/USA, Birdo is stated to be a boy who thinks he is a girl. He wears a bow, is pink, throws eggs out of his mouth and is a love interest of Yoshi's, making them both gay. He also has a female voice in the Gameboy Advance version of Super Mario Bros 2) Barrel Volcano: This is something I CAN confirm and that IS NOT normal: Groudon is in his room from the start. You can't interact with him, but he's there. Bowser's Keep: I have mixed feelings about the quiz being removed. I was happy that I didn't have to go through it, but at the same time, it was one of the main ways to get tips on what to do after beating Smithy. I almost cried when I saw that it had been removed Gate/Factory: If the name of this place could be changed to Factory, that'd be wonderful! The teleporter that let's you go in and out of the place was the second best change that this hack has ever implemented (second only to increasing the level cap in version 7 and onwards). And then, the most badass thing I have ever seen happen in an SMRPG rom hack: Smithy stating how he's burning with infinite power, only to miss every single hit and being murdered by Rosalina. Now let's point out some changes from version 8 to version 9, and even some changes between vanilla and version 9 that I really love. Tonberries instead of dragons: Tonberries have never had elemental versions, but they really fit in perfectly here. And having to find a Tonberry standing somewhere in order to activate the hidden encounters can be very useful if you're not prepared for them yet. Mario saying buh-bye!: Being able to switch out Mario is actually a bigger change than you might think, it opens up so many possibilities for balancing. Before this change, Mario had to be one of the strongest characters, since there was no way to get rid of him. Specials being loked behind bosses and side-quests: In version 8 and below, you could get peach to level 80, and make everything between Star Hill and Barrel Volcano a joke, but now, all of the strong and OP specials are only available after beating certain superbosses and finishing certain side-quests, which can really alter the order of which you beat those superbosses. Defending being useful: In version 8 and below, and even vanilla, defending wasn't that much more than just a way to waste a turn. It cut your damage in half, which could be useful sometimes, but there was never a time where it was better than healing yourself or straight up boosting your defense. But now damage is decreased by A LOT when you defend, and some bosses require you to do so to survive their attacks. Knowledge of your damage: In version 8 and below, when you dealt A TON of damage, it would only display a value up to 9999, even if your attack did more damage than that. Now, we can see almost exactly how much damage we're dealing thanks to big numbers being shortened. Seing stat buffs and stat nerfs: The change Yakibomb introduced no too long ago at the time of this review let's you see an icon next to a character's face telling you what stat buff/debuff is on that character. This includes Auto-Life, Full Break, Attack up and Attack down. Now let's go through some balancing issues. This includes bosses that are too hard/easy (no boss is too hard) and equipment that are too powerful. Hammer Bros: The hammer Bros can be killed very fast and they don't deal much damage. Increase their health or damage dealt, preferably both. Croco: The first and second fights with Croco was unbelievably easy to beat. Give the poor bastard more health and make him stronger in the second fight. Ozma: If you survive his opening attack, you've pretty much won. He only has 4 lives (120K health) so he dies very fast with the right equipment. The problem is, you need that good equipment to survive his first attack, so unless you made it trhough his first attack with bad weapons, Ozma is a joke. Speed Bracer: This, along with the Lazy Shell and a Master Ball, is your reward for finding all the hidden chests in the game. It gives you 2 turns with no consequenses. Nerf its stats. Angel Tiara: The Angel Tiara is your prize for defeating Magus and Schala. It can only be equiped by Peach, significantly boosts stats, blocks against all status effects and gives you 2 turns. It is WAY too good, nerf its stats. Divine Pillar: This is your reward for beating Margaret in the Mushroom Kingdom. Compared to the Angel Tiara, the divine pillar is really bad, it gives no attack, only slightly better defenses and it doesn't grant 2 turns. However, it DOES protect you from status effects AND resists all elements, but if you can beat margaret, you can beat Xion (at least I could) so the Divine Pillar isn't very useful. Lazy Shell: The only boss this thing could be useful for, is Elizabeth, It boosts all your defenses to the max, but sends your attack stats to rock bottom. You might as well get everybody's armor of light and use that instead. Here's my biggest complain: Celebi and the Galaxy Star can be used once in every battle, this is also true for the FF Boss Rush, but NOT for the Pokémon trainer battles or Trial Mode. This makes the FF Boss Rush very easy to beat and it makes Trial Mode 10x harder. That's it for my review, hope you liked it!