Sunday, April 20, 2014

Unused JudgeMan Attack Finally Fixed

Some people may recall a mysterious unused attack discovered a few years ago in MegaMan Battle Network 6 where JudgeMan speaks during battle and summons mysterious objects. Well recently, GM and I looked into that again and made some fantastic new finds!

The attack is broken by normal means. Technically, it's not even part of JudgeMan's AI because the move is separate, having more in common with a chip attack. This move was referenced in a different way and the exclamation marks appeared with a sound after the white dots were summoned. Further investigation into the white dot revealed it's actually JudgeMan that's trying to load!

Hacked into JudgeMan's moveset (which is dreadfully boring as is), it still froze. The reason for this was because it required 12 more frames of animation than were available in his sprite sheet. As is mandatory for compressed sprites of bosses which summon objects, those related objects are part of their sprite sheet usually after their normal attack animations.

Curiously, JudgeMan also has a simple 8x8 tile of a letter p that appears before his book sprites. His sprite sheet was missing a bunch of the required sprites for the move. To counter this, the sprite sheet's animations were expanded to allow the move to load without issue.

However, that was not the last issue to overcome. The attack still wasn't functioning properly. This strange object that appeared needed a lot of separate sprites as it hovered across the corners of the player's field. Each time it reached a corner, the field flashed blue. After 5 rounds, it vanished, but it can also be easily destroyed. This still wasn't doing anything though.

It turns out that, as the message implies, MegaMan must not move. Based on the available data on the attack, this condition could still be enforced. Re-enabling the condition, now when the object stops and flashes the panels blue, the player is punished for moving! Moving causes exclamation marks (with sound) to appear, and causes the object to animate. Then the object appears in front and drops 4 bolts of lightning around itself. It paralyzes, but also flinches, so that may or may not be intentional.

Curiously, this also works for the other 3 conditions specified in the unused messages. The same object is summoned, but in a different color. JudgeMan enforces movement, Battle Chips, and Area Grab, specifically.

See the punishment in action below!

I think it's an interesting move that, if it were implemented properly, could have added some much-needed variety to his AI. Instead of just whipping and summoning books about 10 times in the first ~2 minutes, this could have kept the players thinking during a mundane set of attacks. Perhaps maybe the book attack was made more complex to overcome the limited moves after this punishment attack was removed.
Thanks to GM for all the hard work!

0 comments:

Post a Comment