The irony of Forest Forgotten is that the forest part of it really is better off forgotten.
I’ll explain. The level is divided, like A Generic Single Player Level II, into various biomes, though not as distinctly as in blacky’s take on the same tileset. There’s a leafy forest in the bottom left, a dead forest in the top right, a shrine in the bottom right, and a bunch of vertical spaces, platforms, vines, and grass everywhere else. Most of it’s fairly interesting, but the leafy forest is mostly just aggravating… layer 3 leaves cover up your view of some of JJ2’s most persistent enemies, and there are so many random single food pickups it becomes tedious to try to collect them all. The lack of visibility is the main issue, though. This would be okay as an interlude in the middle of some other level, but here the forest comes right at the beginning—well, depending on which direction you start walking—and gives much the wrong impression for what the rest of the level will be like.
Because I rather liked most of the rest of the level, for all its bizarre design choices. As far as I can tell, the only part of the main level area that’s directly important to completing the level is the ruined shrine in the bottom right. Everything around it—all the grassy platforms, swinging vines, hidden coins, etc.—is there in case you want to beat the level by collecting 40 (mostly hidden, often behind layer 3) coins instead of doing things the more traditional way. Personally I only found 39, but I trust there was another one out there somewhere.
A thought occurs to me that maybe besides the coins, that large area was also there to provide bouncer pickups for accessing the shrine with. In that case, maybe my being able to shoot the toaster powerup through the wall with a bouncer bullet (and thereby gain more than enough ammo to power down through the pit) was a bug, not a clever use of a nearby bouncer pickup to tell me what I was supposed to do. :|
Anyway. I’m not sure this particular brand of non-linear design quite worked for me, mainly because there weren’t a lot of obvious hints pointing the way forward and a lot of the level all looked the same. I had to resort to the tried and true test of looking for uncollected food/undefeated enemies to see if I’d already been somewhere or not. This is a common problem with a lot of sets, but from Xargon I guess I’d have expected more eyecandy diversity.
That confusion aspect is a shame, because when I could tell what was going on, Forest Forgotten was fun, engaging, and creative. Swinging platforms, arrows, animated tiles, crates, and more are all put to good use in puzzles that you’re given just enough information to figure out how to solve. The shrine area sends you on several puzzle-heavy quests in order to smash certain trigger crates before you can beat the level, and they (and the shrine in general) are definitely the most memorable aspects of the level and also where it feels most like a Spaztic work, albeit one that is much fairer than her Mines of Moria ever was. Good fun stuff. The wider exploration areas with all the coins and enemies are close, but there’s something missing that keeps them from feeling quite right.
I don’t know if there was ever a larger story surrounding this level—the shrine at the end stretches on for long enough that I felt it had to be building up to something, but that something never came—but it probably doesn’t really need one. Forest Forgotten is an interesting, often exciting set of ideas that aren’t quite supported by their eyecandy and aren’t quite clearly connected to each other, but definitely worth a play nonetheless.
Surely this one too not for a newbie as like me.
Again died a lot, then i figured it eventually. Yet skip many stuff.
Atleast kind of satifiying level for me. Bound me on pc a lot of turn.
This Xargon tileset is pretty decent as i always said.
Liked the Secret Hours song. Good job.
EDIT: The bugs mentioned below have been fixed by the author! The level’s gameplay and features, and thus this review remains the same!
Wow, to see a new level this big by Tik after all this time. What a simple Facebook group can do.. Anyway let’s review this straight and to the point.
After starting this up, I thought this would be a traditional JJ2 level in jungle style. But quickly I realized this was a more non-linear level with puzzles and other knickknacks that keeps it interesting. I normally prefer the linear style level, but this one makes up for it by providing good platforming with vines and boll platforms, and ememies (monkeys, dragonflies, and bats) in every location along with hidden gems and foods. Every platform and corner encourages exploration. Coins are spread out in fun ways too, with some falling from the ceiling. There are not many carrots but the amount of enemies that may drop them makes up for it. There are several savepoints but the fact they reset all items and enemies after dying makes manual savegames a better option. There’s also a single Morph monitor to switch character for specific situations.
Most original part may be the doors spreadout through the level enclosing powerups and more. Paying a higher amount of coins at a special ‘praying’ spot opens better powerups. Or you can pay less for more simple stuff. In the end these powerups may not be too useful (except maybe Bouncers for shooting down items) but getting one feels rewarding enough.
Eyecandy is good, but sometimes it’s quite hard to see what’s in layer 4 and what isn’t, especially with the trees in the forest areas. I really had to try and remember which branches I didn’t fell through. I don’t really like some of the hidden ememies in the tree leaves either, but that may be more of a personal opinion and no flaw in the level.
Only bugs I could find:
1: When exiting the shrine through the warp, it stays dark in the overworld.
2: There’s no next level set so finishing the level will result in a crash.
3: Not sure about this one, but I believe you could get stuck in the ‘pit’ if you run out of bouncer ammo before reaching the end of the blocks.
I highly recommend this level for the advanced and expert players as the puzzles and some platforming can be quite challenging. It’s not often that such a big SP level gets released these days, that alone makes this worth it. Combine that with the sense of exploration and quality of the puzzles and you have a gem of a level!
Nothing else to say. I just love it and i’m still creating huge SP levels with it.
This tileset is the best!
Can’t rate this at the moment as I haven’t finished it yet. I seem to keep getting a “Fatal Application Error” in the Sticks & Stones level.
(Unsupported rating (10) removal. ~Violet)
Wakeman rated this upload with two stars on Jazz2City.
Looking at this makes me think if I’m playing jj2 or Xargon. Most tiles are there, can’t really tell if all of them are since I havent played Xargon for a while. Plus they are placed in a way which makes the tileset fairly easy to use. Plenty of animations, and it even includes the food and the crystals (but not the creatures =P). You even took the time to put in sucker tubes, destruct blocks, invisible tiles etc, so that a decent level can be made with this (as demonstrated by FireSworD). The palette is nicely done, I have a few small complaints about the masking of a few things, but whatever. This definately makes me want to make a level with it. Great work, and a definite download reccomendation. An 8.7, for all the reasons mentioned above. Rating might be upgraded/downgraded after further use of the tileset.
heh, this conversion is perfect IMO. i think i used to play Xargon like 6-7 years ago, so i can’t tell if all tiles are included, but i still think so. i don’t think this conversion misses any tiles, which is very good thing. there’s some nice extra stuff too, like the aweosme textured background, nice looking rain tiles, and some other stuff im too lazy to list. masking is very smooth too, and i like it. nothing wrong with the masking here. tile placement is good enough, and i think this tileset isn’t too hard to use. some animations can be hard to understand though. overall, this is very nice conversion by Spaztic. download is recommeded. im going to rate this as 8.5 for the reasons i’ve mentioned.
I saw all tiles… The rain is nice and the UNDERWATER tiles to… I luv that ctf that you made… Its a nice tileset. The other dark one is also good. texture background is nice and the walking tiles to. The ani-tiles ar also good. the door with the key and the others. You can make some nice levels with it also some good ctf. Ther up walk tiles and they work perfect. This is one of the best tilesets i guess form you spaztic. Anyway the mask is also nice… Some cave tile’s and Great waterfall tiles.. I hope you will make some ctf levels with it anyway.For layer 7 and mayby 6 nice mountains. Anf the mushrooms ar also good. The tree(s) Look also good… So…
here a nice good rating:
.:. 9.5 .:.
Dx CC of XLM
Spiffy little pack? HAH, Thats a bit funny, i found it great! That’s a lie… oh well her goes my review:
Eyecandy: There is good eyecandy though it is the original eyecandy for the tilesets. It isn’t fantastically amazing or anything, actually there isnt much to see here. A few bugs in the tiles that can be seen extremely easily but oh well. The eyecandy isn’t really fantastic, it just uses the original tileset backgrounds. The eyecandy could be better. Above average this is, I suppose.
Gameplay: Well, some of the levels are a bit plain and boring. Seeing as they are sometimes really plain, or easy. I kind of hate it when someone makes a pack like this and it isn’t as fun as others make it seem. The creator thought more about the design and structure of the levels rather than the fun-factor. There isn’t anything that is too hard, or too boring, or that makes you want to stop it’s just that this pack, has quite a few problems with it.
Pickup Placement: Now this is a type of thing that is perfect in this pack, actually not really but it is good i have to admit. It isn’t disgusting nor is it wonderful. It is good, far above average but not at the top.
Overall: Overall this is a good pack that could be better with a few updates.[This review has been edited by sabaspaz]
Well..I like conversions, and I know that sometimes is hard to do one especially when you have to do a screenshot during a game to get a single tile – you have to be brave for this kind of work.
I can see that you included all the tiles from the Classsic Mario game, I can also see that everything is located logically in your set and for that I will give you a rating 9,0
Bit now I will also say that this conversion is big and great for Mario fans, but it doesn’t fit to jj2!!!
You give to us a tileset with old graphics where are BIG pixels which looks VERY UGLY during a game!!!
This tileset is boring, doesn’t have good colors and it looks ugly during the game (because of BIG pixels and NOT interesting graphics) for this I am giving 5.4
Assuming all this I’m giving you a 7.2
Sorry for this rating but it is not because I don;t like your work -Ithink you did really great job on it – but it isn’t possible to have a good tileset from stuff like that.
Okay, this was a rather ‘interesting’ pack made by Spaztic. Out of all my years playing JJ2 I have never encountered a level pack like this. I am not in the mood to review ALL these levels individually, so I’ll review them as a whole:
The Nothing In Particular Pack (NIP)
Like I said, this whole pack was interesting, and it had HUGE replay value. A good challenge, but to me, it seemed stressful with all the enemies and such low supply of carrots.
Gameplay: It was all good, but at some points I kept getting stuck with all the puzzles. :\ Maybe I’m not the brightest boy, eh?
Eyecandy: Good. It all blended in and I couldn’t find very much tilebugs at all.
Enemy Placement: Great! Placed just at the right points. However, it didn’t look very pleasent (especially all the rapiers in Sticks and Stones and all the norm turtles and tough turtles in Emerald Isle).
Pickups Placement: Good I found it was fairly balanced. Not much ammo though.
Length: Well, I found all the levels to be the perfect length: about as long as the official SP levels.
Difficulty: I found some levels, hard, others not so I’ll just give it an Average/Hard.
Overall: Excellent. A long level pack with excellent replay value. I’ve played all the levels at least 4 or 5 times. Out of all the levels and packs uploaded on Jazz2Online, this HAS to be one of my favorites! Great job!
And that concludes my review… I think this level fully deserves a 9 for providing a challenge along with puzzles and other original ideas.[This review has been edited by Dago]
Yes this is the really good episode (the mez level is really confusing) Everything is originally designed, but I’m going to take off points (HA HA)
Well as this is the multiple I will take of points for that tileset which is used in intro-it’s not the best because the sky doesn’t fit togeather (this is clearly visible) and graphics have a lot of transparent area.
I found some bugs in the levels during the game but there was a small amount of bugs and they aren’t so horrible :)
The levels you have made are almost perfect (in some parts) and I like it!
I like where everythink (in tilesets o levels ofcourse) is perfect.
So because not everythink is perfect and the intro tileset is scaring me I’ll give you a 9.0 – I was thinking about 8.7 but oh well.. I had so much FUN playing your cool episode, it was quite simmilar to that times when I was playing JJ2 The Secret Files my first time.
there is your 9 for really nice job.
I thought it was great! But there were a tad too many puzzles at times.
(Unsupported rating removal edit. Don’t do this again. ~Violet)[This review has been edited by Violet CLM]
Great LVL’S, Spaztic! This is REALY GREAT!
There goes many jears over I can’t make this so great!
Well done Spaztic and as my promise(with one then?;)I give you an 9.2!
Eat your lima beans, Johnny.