Version 2.1 is the current version of SRB2, released on March 15th, 2014. It has been patched several times since; the current patch is v2.1.19, released on May 29th, 2017. One of the largest updates in the history of SRB2, v2.1 brought significant changes to the game in many areas. Among the most notable changes and additions are the following:
- The Single Player campaign was heavily updated to improve its consistency and quality, adding or replacing several stages while significantly editing others.
- New Special Stages based on the SEGA game NiGHTS Into Dreams were added to the game.
- Time Attack mode was expanded into Record Attack mode, and the emblem system was revamped.
- To further increase customizability, SOC received extensive changes and Lua was added as a second, more versatile scripting language.
- 1 Release history
- 2 Single Player campaign
- 3 Secret levels
- 4 Special Stages
- 5 Multiplayer
- 6 Record Attack
- 7 Unlockables and emblems
- 8 SOC
- 9 Other changes
- 10 References
Version 2.1 has had the largest number of patch releases of all major SRB2 versions to date (v1.09.3 being only a series of beta releases). These patches mostly included bugfixes, but some also added new features, such as new functionality for Lua scripting and slopes.
|v2.1.0||March 15th, 2014|
|v2.1.1||March 15th, 2014|
|v2.1.2||March 17th, 2014|
|v2.1.3||March 18th, 2014|
|v2.1.4||March 21st, 2014|
|v2.1.5||March 23rd, 2014|
|v2.1.6||March 24th, 2014|
|v2.1.7||April 14th, 2014|
|v2.1.8||April 19th, 2014|
|v2.1.9||August 3rd, 2014|
|v2.1.10||August 5th, 2014|
|v2.1.11||August 26th, 2014|
|v2.1.12||November 11th, 2014 1|
|v2.1.13||December 31st, 2014 2|
|v2.1.14||December 31st, 2014|
|v2.1.15||May 19th, 2016|
|v2.1.16||September 6th, 2016|
|v2.1.17||January 17th, 2017|
|v2.1.18||May 12th, 2017|
|v2.1.19||May 29th, 2017|
1 v2.1.12 was the first release to use the SDL2 audio and video libraries, which improved the performance on modern operating systems. For the remainder of the v2.1 release cycle, a separate executable was included that still used the old libraries, as a fallback if the new libraries did not work properly.
2 v2.1.13 contained major bugs and was quickly withdrawn. It was replaced by v2.1.14 later the same day.
Single Player campaign
The Single Player campaign was the main focus of v2.1 development. Although only two completely new stages were added (Castle Eggman Zone Act 3 and Egg Rock Zone Act 3), all levels received at least minor changes; some were heavily revamped and/or extended. The boss fights were also heavily reworked, and all bosses enter their "pinch" phases when they have three hits left instead of two. The intention behind these changes is to present a significantly more polished and consistent Single Player campaign for v2.1.
Act 1 received a few additions to introduce certain game mechanics to the player, such as spindashing and the Whirlwind Shield. These modifications do not make the stage longer, however. The cave at the beginning of the stage that acted as a shortcut was removed, since it tended to cause new players to go in circles.
In act 2, a double-size version of the
GFZROCK texture was introduced to reduce tiling in tall rooms. A few areas, particularly around the starting room, received additional detail to break up the visual monotony. The hidden area next to the starting point was modified to serve as an alternate route that involves the Whirlwind Shield mechanic. The moving platforms were replaced with a red spring. The long indoor corridor at the end of the stage was replaced with a new outdoor area. Several other areas in both levels received small modifications to streamline quirky design.
For act 3, the Egg Mobile's AI was redone; its main attack is now a laser that slowly aims towards the player. In the pinch phase, it now spawns spikeballs around itself that it throws at the player after a few seconds. The arena was also redesigned.
Techno Hill Zone
The whole zone was extensively revamped to make it more distinct from Greenflower Zone. Most significantly, the slime was recolored to a darker purple hue and its mechanics were changed; instead of being harmful, it is now extremely buoyant. Jumping into it causes the player to float back up again, bouncing in and out until they lose their momentum and start walking on it. Among other things, the new slime mechanics are used to hide power-ups deep in the slime that cannot be reached with a normal jump. Instead, the player has to find a ledge that is high enough to gain enough speed and reach the power-up. All Crawlas in the zone were removed and replaced with the Spring Shell, a turtle-like enemy with a spring on its back that allows the player to reach places they otherwise could not. A yellow variant of the Spring Shell was also added, which drops a yellow spring upon its destruction, to prevent Sonic from being stuck in some areas or to allow backtracking. The Buzzes now played a buzzing sound when flying towards the player.
While the layout of act 1 is fundamentally the same, many sections were revamped or repurposed, and many hidden items and decorations were added, resulting in a stage that looks and plays very differently from the original version. The sky was colored orange to give the level a sunset feel, and the green grass throughout the stage was replaced with withered, brown grass. The long corridor that connected the two halves of the stage was replaced by a factory area. The first Knuckles-exclusive path is introduced in this new area, forcing players using him to take a separate path in this section that lasts until the large slime lake. The left path is now a short detour that leads back into the large slime lake, with a large wall blocking the rest of the former path; due to this change, the underground tunnel is now only accessible by backtracking from the start of the factory. The underground tunnel was revamped to utilize the new slime, instead of containing barrels to jump over.
Act 2 was remade from scratch with the new slime mechanics in mind. It retains the general structure of the old level, but features entirely new level design and is significantly longer. Unlike the previous version of the level, gas jets and damaging electric floors are used throughout the level, and several sections force the player to exploit the slime mechanics to get past obstacles that they could not otherwise pass. The level features new textures as well as an elaborate skybox.
For act 3, the Egg Slimer and its arena were slightly altered to make the boss battle easier. Glass walls were added around the edge of the train to prevent the player from falling onto the tracks, which would cause instant death in previous versions. The boss was given a visible delay when turning around, leaving it vulnerable. During its pinch phase, it will now retreat to the edge of the arena and slowly advance towards the player, trying to stomp on them with a high jump when close enough.
Deep Sea Zone
While the general design of Deep Sea Zone was unchanged, several areas received tweaks to fix problematic level design and make the zone slightly easier. Several death pits throughout the zone were removed and extra air bubbles were added.
In act 1, the height to which the water at the beginning rises was lowered. The gargoyle puzzle path was made slightly easier by lowering the requirements for some buttons, and the path can now be escaped by any character – previously, Sonic players were required to finish it once starting.
Several rooms in act 2 were modified. The falling logs after the bustable block maze were removed and replaced by floating platforms. The underwater zoom tube maze was removed, and all paths in the underwater slide now lead to the same exit. In the room right afterwards, the player is no longer required to take a zoom tube back to the previous area if they fall into the water, and the water level no longer rises. The underwater crusher section was made easier by slowing down the crushers.
Act 3 received a visual redesign, and the water in the arena was made shallower to make it easier for the player to see the boss. In its pinch phase, the Sea Egg no longer floods the level, instead spawning two decoys that also shoot at the player.
Castle Eggman Zone
Castle Eggman Zone had been unfinished in v2.0 and was heavily revised for v2.1. Both acts now use green grass instead of the previous withered grass. The rotating chain gimmick was streamlined; the player can no longer change the direction of the rotation, and the chains are all large enough for the player to grab on to them by simply standing underneath them rather than jumping. The swinging chains were entirely removed from the zone. All Sharps and Crawlas were also removed, while a rudimentary firing animation was added for the Robo-Hood.
Act 1 was heavily retextured to resemble a forest, and now features an animated sky containing layers of moving clouds. The lake area no longer contains an underwater zoom tube; instead the path now winds around the lake. In the same area, Knuckles is forced onto a new path that involves spinning maces; however, Tails can take this path as well. The final area now contains an alternate lower path instead of a reverse waterslide.
Act 2 was expanded considerably and is now approximately twice as long. The added parts include a large library section, a path involving swinging and spinning maces, and several areas designed around rotating chains. Many other parts of the stage were tweaked to make the difficulty level consistent. The gate at the beginning, which previously opened for players with all emeralds, now remains closed. Due to the level's unfinished nature in v2.0, many half-implemented ideas were removed; others were extended to create a proper path split that merges back before the new areas.
A boss fight was added to the zone. It takes place in a circular arena where the boss, Eggscalibur, is situated in a cage in the center. Chains of spikeballs extend from the cage and revolve around the arena, forcing the player to evade them. Every few seconds, the cage is lifted, allowing the player to hit the boss. In the pinch phase, the cage breaks and the boss rises to the top of the arena, with the spikeballs still rotating diagonally below it. Players must use rotating chains to launch themselves in the air and hit the boss.
Arid Canyon Zone
A few adjustments were made to act 1. The section with the two PolyObject platforms that move over a death pit was removed. A few instances where visible parts of the stage were blocked off by invisible walls were fixed. The rope pulley section in the last room was given an alternate, lower path that involves difficult platforming over the pit.
Acts 2 and 3 are still not featured in this version.
Red Volcano Zone
Several adjustments were made to act 1, adding new unique gimmicks and making the stage have a more consistent, harder difficulty. Rings now fall below the surface of the lava if the player gets hit, making it impossible in most cases to recollect them. The Unidus, a new enemy that throws spikeballs at the player, was added to the level. The rising lava room at the start of the level was removed. The shortcut on the left path, which allowed the player to skip a large portion of the level and used inconsistent lava behavior, was removed and replaced by a simple secret area. In the latter half of the stage, rotating flamethrowers were added, and a formerly empty section now features lowered ceilings with upside-down springs that push the player into the lava if they are not careful.
As with the previous zone, acts 2 and 3 are not featured in this version.
Egg Rock Zone
The enemy placement in the first two acts was redone to make the zone consistent with all others. Sharps and Snailers were added to act 1, which had been previously been completely devoid of enemies. Enemies that are already featured in other zones, such as Egg Guards and Minuses, were removed from act 2, leaving Egg Rock Zone with an exclusive enemy roster of Sharps, Snailers, Pop-up Turrets and Jetty-Syns.
The path imbalance in act 1 was partially addressed by joining the paths after the outer space room, which is now exclusive to the left path. The last room of the right path, which involved a horizontal laser barrier that chases the player up the room, was replaced by a small outdoor room that also features the space countdown gimmick.
In act 2, the paths now rejoin after the room with the intermittently appearing and disappearing platforms, which is now exclusive to the right path. The wind tunnel room, which was considered to be cheap, was removed. The enemy trap before the first Star Post was also removed.
An entirely new third act was added to the zone which involves a race and subsequent boss fight against Metal Sonic.
The final boss fight was moved to a separate zone, called Egg Rock Core Zone. It still features Brak Eggman, but the fight itself was entirely remade. Brak Eggman alternates between a flamethrowing attack and firing missiles with a very high knockback. In the pinch phase, he also throws a bomb that sets a large section of the arena on fire and launches a line-of-sight attack that the player must dodge by hiding behind barrels. The boss is protected by a damaging electric barrier that the player must short out by luring the boss into a lavafall.
In its final incarnation, SRB2 is intended to feature three super levels and three hyper levels as unlockable stages. While v2.0 already featured the first hyper level, Aerial Garden Zone, v2.1 added the second hyper level, Azure Temple Zone. For more information regarding the super and hyper levels, see the In development page. In addition to these levels, the SRB1 Remake and Spring Hill Zone returned from v2.0 mostly unchanged, while Mario Koopa Blast was remade entirely and a second unlockable NiGHTS stage, Black Hole Zone, was added.
Mario Koopa Blast
The previous Mario Koopa Blast levels, which were generally considered to be subpar, were removed and replaced by Pipe Towers Zone, a Mario level that was originally made for the July/August 2011 OLDC. The level combines both Overworld and Underworld areas, and features gimmicks such as bouncy mushrooms and Thwomp blocks.
Aerial Garden Zone
The "Neo" prefix was removed from the level name, reverting to just "Aerial Garden Zone". Several changes were made to the level: The thok barrier stripe which surrounds the outer limits of the stage was made invisible, and a new sky texture was added. Some jumps which required the player to stand on the edge of the platform were toned down. The path through the final room of the AGZ1 part was changed, no longer allowing Sonic players to skip part of the room. Also in this room, Knuckles is forced to take a different path which has existed since v2.0 but was previously not mandatory.
In various sections that featured pillars with blue springs on top of them, the blue springs were replaced with yellow springs, some of which face diagonally outward, forcing the player to hit the right spring to avoid being pushed into a pit. The section with moving platforms that crush the player against the ceiling was slightly extended. The underwater section, which had been added for v2.0, was removed. The AGZ3 section is still optional, but it now contains buttons that unlock the gate to the Inner Sanctum Zone part of the map. In addition to the Jetty-syns, Bird Aircraft Strike Hazards were added to the map.
Azure Temple Zone
This level, which won the May/June 2012 OLDC, was added to SRB2 as the second hyper level. It is an underwater stage with extremely difficult platforming over death pits, gargoyles that spit fire in intricate patterns that the player must avoid, and buzzes equipped with water bubbles that grant the player air upon being defeated.
The old Special Stages were replaced by single-mare NiGHTS tracks, each of which is themed after one of the main Single Player zones (excluding Dark City Zone and Grand Eggship Zone). These stages cannot be explored in 3D mode; instead, the player will be directly transformed into Super Sonic upon entering a Special Stage, and once the player runs out of time, the level will end. Instead of rings, the player must collect blue spheres to destroy the Ideya Capture, while the emblems were replaced with rings. The blue sphere requirements vary between stages. The difficulty curve of these stages is similar to the one of the previous Special Stages, with the first stage being practically impossible to lose and the last one being extremely difficult. Because NiGHTS is rather complicated, the first few stages allow the player to gradually get used to the different mechanics such as paralooping, dashing and the power-ups, while the later stages require understanding of these mechanics and skill at using them.
The second Special Stage, Toxic Plateau Zone, was released on the SRB2 Message Board in October 2012 by Rob as a preview. The preview has a stricter time limit than the version in v2.1 and uses the graphics of the old, pre-v2.1 slime. Additionally, screenshots of the first five Special Stages were released. Cavern Fortress Zone, the CEZ-themed Special Stage, is based on the track of Slumber Circuit Zone, an old Circuit level. Among its obstacles are moving bookcases that block the player's path. Dusty Wasteland Zone, the ACZ-themed Special Stage, is based on a shortened version of Spring Hill Zone, with some areas like the lake being removed. Most of the challenges in Egg Satellite Zone, the ERZ-themed Special Stage, come from the hazardous layout, which replicates many of the gimmicks found in ERZ itself. Touching one of these hazards stops the player and makes them lose 5 seconds off the timer. The rotating laser at the beginning of the right path in ERZ2 is reused in Egg Satellite Zone, albeit with four blades instead of two. The player has to complete a full circle around the laser.
Unlike v2.0's Special Stages, each NiGHTS Special Stage has its own unique level name. All but one of the new Special Stages use music from Mystic Realm's soundtrack; the old Special Stage theme is now an unused track.
Changes to NiGHTS gametype
To accommodate these new Special Stages, several changes were made to the NiGHTS gametype. The directional controls were tightened considerably, making it easier to navigate and allowing the player to make tighter loops. The Drill Dash can now only be refilled by flying through hoops, not by collecting blue spheres or rings. Besides the Nightopian Helper, the Drill Refill and the Super Paraloop, two new power-ups were added to NiGHTS. One of these is called Link Freeze, which preserves the player's link for a short period of time, whether or not they collect any more items. The other is Extra Time, which adds time to the player's clock. The size of hoops can now be modified via the Thing flags, allowing for 16 different Hoop sizes with a radius between 32 and 272 fracunits. After the player has gone in a full circle around a NiGHTS stage, all items will re-appear, allowing the player to take advantage of the remaining bonus time by going around the stage again.
The score in the Special Stages is separate from the score in the main game. The player can obtain a continue in each Special Stage by earning 50,000 points in it. In the score tally screen, the player receives additional bonus points for the main game score for achieving a high link (rather than for the number of rings, as was the case in v2.0). The bonus is calculated by taking the highest achieved link and multiplying it by 100. All Special Stages allow the player to keep a continuous link through the entire level.
Changes to the interface of NiGHTS levels were made as well. The Drill Dash meter has a new graphic. The background of the sphere counter now turns red once the player has collected enough spheres to destroy the Ideya Capture. After collecting a power-up, its name will be displayed on the screen for a few seconds. The power-ups are also accompanied by visual aids; the Super Paraloop makes the player leave red sparkles instead of blue one and the NiGHTS Helper is a flicky that trails the player. Once the Ideya Capture is destroyed, the collected emerald will orbit the player until the end of the stage.
The Match and CTF rotations were expanded to 13 and 11 maps, respectively. Most of the new maps are submissions to the Official Level Design Contest by the developers, although revamped versions of two CTF maps from previous releases, Iron Turret Zone and Dual Fortress Zone, are also included. Several maps from the v2.0 rotations received graphical updates, and Frost Columns Zone was entirely retextured. Noxious Factory Zone was revamped to make use of the new slime mechanic, while Icicle Falls Zone and Twisted Terminal Zone received layout changes. To create space for the new maps, the rotations were moved to the
MAPFx slots, allowing for up to 36 maps per gametype. The Circuit rotation was removed entirely due to its poor reputation and a general consensus that Race is more enjoyable on the Single Player stages.
In Match and CTF, players are now equipped with a basic shield upon being spawned to prevent them from being killed immediately. The shield protects from one hit and has no other features. The same shield is also used for a mechanic that occasionally gives shields to players who are scoring few points, but it is not available through monitors like the other shields.
The respawn tables for the Weak Random Monitor and Strong Random Monitor used in Match and CTF were adjusted. Most notably, rings no longer spawn from the WRM and the frequency of other items was increased to make up for the difference. As a consequence, v2.1's official Match stages no longer use the Super Ring Monitor as the base item for the WRM, which is used initially when the map is loaded. The CTF stages, however, still use the Super Ring Monitor as the base item for the WRM.
Tweaks were made to most of the existing weapon rings in Match and CTF:
- Grenade Ring: This weapon's behavior was significantly modified, as it had been considered too powerful before. It no longer explodes when a player touches it or is close enough to it, and it now bounces off walls and the ground more easily. Holding the Fire button no longer controls the distance a Grenade Ring is thrown. The Grenade Ring's firing rate was tripled from 1 ring to 3 rings per second. The ammo granted by both the ammo pickup and the panel was doubled from 5 to 10, and the maximum capacity was doubled from 50 to 100. Thrown Grenade Rings also now detonate after 6 seconds instead of 7.
- Automatic Ring: The ammo granted by the ammo pickup and panel was increased from 30 to 40, and the maximum capacity was increased from 300 to 400.
- Scatter Ring: The ammo granted by the ammo pickup and panel was halved from 10 to 5, and the maximum capacity was also halved from 100 to 50.
- Bounce Ring: This weapon's firing rate was increased from 3 to 4 rings per second.
- Explosion Ring: This weapon's firing rate was halved from approximately 1.33 to approximately 0.66 rings per second.
The Infinity Ring weapon from v1.09.4 and earlier was re-added to Match and CTF, but was given new behavior to work with the existing weapon system introduced in v2.0. It can be fired continuously without using up the player's rings, but instead only the Infinity Ring ammo itself. Unlike other weapons, no weapon panel needs to be collected before the Infinity Ring weapon can be used. It automatically replaces the red wing weapon when collected, and changes back only after the Infinity Ring ammo has been depleted entirely. v2.1's Match rotation features only a single Infinity Ring ammo pickup per map, while in v2.1's CTF rotation the weapon does not appear at all.
Lives were removed entirely in Race mode, allowing players to respawn infinitely like in Match and CTF.
In all multiplayer gametypes, the ability to switch characters mid-round was disabled by default, but it can be re-enabled by the host with the
restrictskinchange console variable.
The gametype Classic Race, which is based on Sonic 2's two-player mode, was revamped and renamed to Competition. It is played on the Single Player stages. The categories in which points are awarded are the same, but points are not only awarded for winning a category. Instead, for each category, the highest-ranking player receives the maximum amount of points while each successive player receives one point less up until the lowest-ranking player who receives no points. This is done for all categories and the resulting points are combined to form the score. This significantly reduces the chance of ties in games with more than two players.
Time Attack was revamped and expanded. It is now called Record Attack and saves records not only for the quickest time, but also the highest score achieved and the most rings collected in a level. Replays are now automatically recorded upon playing a level in Record Attack, and the replay of the best attempt at each of the three criteria is automatically kept. The last recorded attempt, regardless of whether or not the level was finished, is also kept temporarily until the level is attempted again.
A variation of Record Attack for NiGHTS levels, called "NiGHTS Mode", was also added to the SRB2. Here, the player can replay the Special Stages and try to get a high score, a fast time or a high grade. The grade is a new requirement that was added specifically for Special Stages. Depending on the score the player has gotten in the Special Stage, they receive a grade between A and F, with A being the highest. The score requirements for getting each grade differ between stages.
A ghost option now exists that displays a previously recorded replay in real time while playing a stage, allowing players to race against their own records (up to thirteen ghosts at once). The player can toggle which replays they want to display as ghosts, including best time, best score, most rings, last replay and guest. The guest option allows players to share replays with each other and use replays of other players as ghosts. In order to prevent desynchronization when displaying the replays as ghosts, they now record not only the key input but also the player's position on the map.
When making a record in Record Attack, all extra life monitors in a level are now automatically turned into score monitors. These score monitors award either 1,000 or 10,000 points, depending on the Thing flags checked.
Unlockables and emblems
The system for adding custom unlockables and emblems was completely rewritten and is now much more customizable. Changes to unlockables include the possibility to change the layout of the Secrets menu and the option of having multiple level selects with different levels. The requirements for unlockables are now determined by condition sets, which allow for more options and greater flexibility than the previous system. SRB2's default settings regarding emblems, unlockables and level headers can now be erased in a SOC. Map-specific emblems can now be awarded for meeting certain requirements in Record Attack, and those that are hidden directly in the maps are now by default collectible by every character. Extra emblems that are earned by meeting certain global requirements can be created as well. v2.0 already had four of these extra emblems, but they could be unlocked even in custom modifications where this would be undesirable and there was no way to create custom ones.
Making use of this new emblem system, SRB2's official Single Player stages each have eight emblems to collect in v2.1. Five of these are hidden directly in the map and one can be earned in each Record Attack discipline. To make the emblems easier to identify, each of the eight emblems now has a different color and displays a different logo. The emblem that are hidden in the map display a star and the symbols for the four card suits (spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs), respectively. The Ring Attack emblem displays a ring, the Time Attack emblem displays an hourglass, and the Score Attack emblem displays a crown. Boss maps only have one emblem to collect, which is the Time Attack emblem. The Special Stages have three emblems to collect; one hidden in the map, one for time and one for an A grade.
On top of the stage-specific emblems, there are five extra emblems in v2.1. Three return from v2.0, including an emblem for beating the game, beating the game with all emeralds, and for getting a perfect bonus in any non-secret stage. Additionally, there is an emblem for completing the SRB1 Remake and a "NiGHTS mastery" emblem for beating Black Hole Zone. All emblems in the game are distinguished by unique graphics, and additional graphics and free slots for custom emblem graphics are available for modders.
Two new features are provided in v2.1 that can assist the player in looking for emblems directly hidden in a map, both of which are unlocked when the player collects enough emblems. The first of these unlockables, called "Emblem Hints", gives the player hints for where the emblems are hidden in a map. The hints are all given in haiku form. It requires 40 emblems (out of 160) to be unlocked. The second unlockable, called "Emblem Radar", allows the player to turn on a radar that shows close they are to emblems hidden in the map. Like the radar used in Emerald Hunt, the colors of the emblem icons displayed on the HUD and the frequency of the radar's beep sound change as the player gets closer to an emblem. It requires 80 emblems (out of 160) to be unlocked.
Several changes were made to the SOC system. These changes address issues with cross-compatibility and user friendliness.
- Object types, States, Sprites and Sounds can now be referred to by name instead of slot numbers. Aside from making the SOC easier to read, this allows for forwards compatibility with source code modifications and future versions of SRB2, because even if the slots are switched, the references stay correct. In v2.1.15, the system for storing music tracks was revamped to also use names instead of slot numbers.
- Flags can also be referred to by name instead of adding their values together. When listed for the
Flagsparameter, the flag names are separated by a "|". For example,
Flags = 3can be written as
FLAGS = MF_SPECIAL|MF_SOLID.
- Users can assign names to custom Object types, States, Sprites and Sounds so that they can be referenced in the same way as regular entries. This is done by listing the names of all custom entries in a
Freeslotblock at the top of the SOC. When the SOC is loaded, the game goes through the list and assigns each entry to the next available freeslot. This means that all slot conflicts between SOCs will be eliminated except in a case where two entries share the exact same name. The upper limit for the number of freeslots that can be occupied is still in place, however.
- Mathematical operations can now be performed in numbered fields (virtually all of them). These include the standard addition (+), subtraction (-), multiplication (*) and division (/), as well as left/right bit shifts (<< and >>) and bitwise operations "and" (&) and "or" (|).
- Special constants such as
FRACUNIT(65536 or 216, which is the size of a single map unit in 16:16 fixed-point representation) and
TICRATE(35, which is the number of tics that a second consists of) can be used as a substitute for the numbers they represent. They can be used for mathematical operations just like regular numbers.
- Warnings that are displayed in the console when adding a SOC file are now accompanied by the line number where the problem has occurred, allowing the user to find the problem more easily.
- Things of an unknown type and Objects that try to display unknown or invalid sprites are now displayed with a warning graphic in-game.
- v2.1.15 added the
FF_ANIMATEflag for states, which makes it possible to create animated states that cycle through different sprites. Previously, such animations had to be created by using a separate state for each animation step.
- Starting with v2.1.15, SRB2 recognizes all lumps with the prefix
SOC_as SOC lumps, in addition to the special lump names
OBJCTCFGthat were previously used.
Additionally, it was now possible for users to modify or create new screen fades using SOC.
- When backpedaling from running at high speeds, the game now spawns a small cloud of dust around the player, plays the skidding sound and puts the player's character in its standing frames. This is intended to make it more intuitive to new players that unlike in modern Sonic games, the player's momentum is not immediately canceled upon releasing the forward button.
- When Knuckles touches the ground while gliding, he now skids along the ground for a short distance.
- SRB2's collision detection was improved and can now handle much faster speeds. As a result, the previous upper limit on object movement speeds (60 fracunits per tic) was removed. Therefore the Super Sneakers, which are intended to double the player's top speed, no longer cap off at 50 fracunits per tic. With Super Sneakers, Tails will now move at 64, Knuckles at 68 and Sonic at 72. Additionally, the player sprites now produce afterimages when moving at high speeds with Super Sneakers. The spindash was also made more powerful, now reaching a top speed of 90 when fully charged.
- As a result of the improved collision detection and another bugfix that allowed Knuckles to climb on one-sided linedefs, thok barriers are no longer necessary except for decorative uses since v2.1.16.
- A long-standing bug that caused strafing input to be ignored if the player was at their top speed was fixed. Among other things, this makes Tails's flight much more responsive to turning. An exploit that allowed Tails to go faster when strafing while flying was also fixed. Charging a spindash and then flying still allows Tails to retain his speed as long as he flies horizontally, but flying upwards will quickly return his speed to normal.
- Rings now fly further and further away from the player if they get hit multiple times in succession.
- The Force Shield no longer reflects shots.
- There is now a "Sonic & Tails" option in the character select screen that works just like in Sonic 2 and Sonic 3. The player controls Sonic while a Tails bot follows him around. The Tails bot can be controlled with the Player 2 controls, but the camera stays focused on Sonic, which makes it difficult to control him. While player-controlled, Tails can be used to pick up Sonic and fly him around, but he will not fly while computer-controlled unless he is respawning.
- The rules for score chaining were changed: After chaining 15 enemies or more, the player is now awarded 10,000 points per enemy. Killing multiple enemies with a spindash no longer counts as a chain, but killing multiple enemies while invincible does. In Mario mode, the scoring is different: For each additional enemy in the chain, the score is doubled. For each enemy beginning with the ninth, an extra life is awarded instead (or 10,000 points in Record Attack).
- For boss stages, the time bonus that is awarded after completing a level was replaced with a guard bonus that awards points based on how often the player was hit.
- When climbing a wall while in first-person view, the camera now temporarily switches to third-person view.
- Lives were removed in Ultimate mode, so in order to beat it, the player has to finish the entire Single Player campaign without being damaged once.
- SRB1 mode was merged with regular 2D mode, making the characters slower for easier control. The two were merged because SRB1 mode was unusable for modifications.
- The physics for quicksand were changed, making it act like in Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Jumping is allowed at any time, not just if the player is sinking, and tapping the jump button repeatedly makes the player ascend faster.
- The monitor sprites were changed. They are slightly bigger to make them easier to see at a distance, and the shields have different and distinct icons to make them easier to tell apart.
- The shield sprites were also changed. As opposed to the previous single-colored orbs, each shield now has a unique appearance. This makes the shields easier to tell apart in a colormap or darkness.
- Knuckles's sprites were remade from scratch.
- Super transformation sprites were added for Tails and Knuckles. A glowing effect was also added to the Super form sprites for all characters to make Super players easier to spot.
- Several new skin colors were added, including Teal, Tan, Rosewood, Brown, Neon Green, Zim and Olive. Black, Grey and Dark Red returned from previous versions. Thanks to the glowing effect that distinguished Super players, Yellow was allowed as a player color in multiplayer again.
New engine features
- v2.1 supports Lua, a scripting language that allows users to modify many things that previously required a source code modification. For example, it can be used to create new actions for custom Objects and to customize the HUD.
- Slopes and appropriate physics for them are included since v2.1.15, although they are not yet used in any of the official levels. Among the capabilities of SRB2's slopes are support for sloped FOFs (including translucent ones), vertex-based slopes and dynamic slopes whose angle can be changed at runtime.
- PolyObject support was improved in v2.1.12: Their flats can now be rendered, and the player's momentum is now preserved when jumping off a PolyObject.
- SRB2 now features skyboxes, which allow for more complex and even animated skies by rendering a separate section of the level as the sky.
- v2.1.12 added support for visual portals in Software mode.
- Support for MD2 models was expanded: Models for different player characters can now be loaded at the same time. Furthermore, models that replace sprites for objects that have the ability to change color can be made to change their color as well.
- In an attempt to achieve feature parity between the Software and OpenGL renderers, support for several graphical features that had been added for v2.0 was added to OpenGL. Additionally, the previous restriction of the vertical viewing angle to 60 degrees in Software mode, which had been put in place to prevent excessive distortion, was lifted.
- "Movie mode", which allows the user to record animated videos of the game, was improved: Recording can be started and stopped by pressing the F9 button. In Software mode, the recordings are stored as an animated GIF by default.
- v2.1 includes Blargg's Game Music Emu library, allowing SRB2 to support various video game music formats.
- v2.1 uses ZDoom's format for textures. Instead of a
PNAMESlump, custom textures are added via the text-based
TEXTURESlump. This makes it possible to add two WADs with custom textures to the game at the same time without them canceling each other out. WAD editors such as SLADE are able to convert from the old format to the new format.
- v2.1 supports tall patches, removing the previous height limit of 255 pixels and allowing for larger patches and sprites than before.
- Additional actions and character abilities were imported from the v2.0 modification SRB2Morphed.
- Several restrictions placed on custom characters in v2.0 were lifted: The upper limits for many player stats were removed and super forms were allowed in Single Player and Coop again.
Menus and display
- A new intro animation was added before the main intro, depicting Eggman being served a truck full of pure fat.
- Title screen demos were re-added in v2.1; these were originally featured in all early versions of SRB2 (except SRB2 TGF) up to Demo 4, but had been removed for SRB2 2k3 onwards. Three demos are included that are replays of GFZ1 as Sonic, GFZ2 as Tails and THZ1 as Knuckles. After waiting at the title screen for a while, the game will start alternating between playing one of these demos and returning to the title screen after each demo has finished, advancing to the next demo in order each time.
- Many of the menus in the game were reorganized for v2.1 and some were graphically redesigned. The GFZ checkerboard graphic that had previously appeared in some menus was removed entirely. The Select Game menu was expanded to a scrolling list of 30 save slots, and cleared save slots are now marked. The character select screen was redesigned, featuring a scrolling selection of pictures for each character on the left and an expanded description box on the right. A new page was added to the Statistics screen that shows the total play time and combined records for all levels for the three disciplines in Record Attack. The options menu was reorganized, and menu entries were added for many options which could previously only be set via the console.
- Hitting the Escape key while in a map now brings up a separate pause menu instead of the title menu. It displays various game options that are relevant for the current gametype, such as options to switch the map or the team in multiplayer gametypes. In Single Player, it displays a checklist for the emblems in the currently played stage, the Record Attack requirements and current records for the stage, and shortcuts to various unlockables (such as level select and emblem hints).
- The number of Special Stage Tokens collected in the current level is now displayed when pressing the Tab button. Also, a distinct sound effect for collecting a token was added, instead of the ring collection sound used before.
- Users can now switch between fullscreen and windowed mode without restarting the game. The Software renderer now supported the 960×600 and 1280×800 resolutions in windowed mode. From v2.1.12 onwards, all of fullscreen mode's resolutions were made available to windowed mode in Software (
srb2win.exeonly), instead of windowed mode requiring a separate set of resolutions.
- The console was heavily revamped in v2.1.17: the input cursor could now be moved left and right, multiple characters could be selected at the same time using the shift key, and selected text could now be cut, copied or pasted.
|Pre-demo||SRB2 TGF • SRB2 Halloween • SRB2 Christmas|
|Demo||Demo 1 • Demo 2 • Demo 3 • Demo 4 • Demo 4.32–4.35 • SRB2 2k3|
|Final Demo||Final Demo 1.01–1.04 • Final Demo 1.08 • Final Demo 1.09–1.09.2 • Final Demo 1.09.3–1.09.4|
|Post-demo||Match beta • Version 2.0 • Version 2.1 • In development|