If you remember a while ago, I mentioned the leak of the Gold and Silver Spaceworld prototypes being leaked. The disassembly of the Spaceworld Demo is still in process, but people have fawned over the differences and taken to using different aspects of it in other romhacks. Most hacks are graphic changes, some are working towards adding the beta pokemon. I happen to enjoy the things that can be done by way of romhacking, and Bluestar and Redstar happen to be such a hack that has some cool stuff.
But Teh Graphics
First thing of note is yes, the graphics are changed to the Spaceworld ones. It is actually kinda fun to go through familiar places in Kanto with this graphical style. I enjoyed the gyms and the gates, yes the gates had a bit more darkness, but it was a good kind, per se. (More pics at the end!) The biggest thing of note, though is the change to the battle sprites. You could find the 151 in their spaceworld likeness and the events that gave you all the starters as found in Yellow version are in this, too. Although, if you want to enjoy the colors, you need to use a Super Gameboy enabled emulator. BGB is the recommended emulator for that.
So, a big staple in modern romhacks is running, if you have a romhack that doesn’t have running in it, you’re going slow. Running or double speed in bluestar/redstar is a dream. By holding the B Button (or the key/whatever that represents that in your emulator) you go at double speed, this means the bike is uber-fast. A final warning, you may run into trainers unexpectedly if you go too fast. Along with that speed up, surf got a lot faster, so your surf speed in zooming down to Cinnabar (got down the West side from Pallet Town, quickest and no trainer battles).
Some other stuff you find are the exp bars, I guarantee you this is generation 1, not 2. The experience bars are added into this, so you can see what you are sitting at during your battle. This feature is pretty awesome and is also found in version 2.4.2 of Red++. As you explore, you will also see, without a doubt, different sprites on the overworld and in the trainer battles. This, as mentioned already, gives us a good look at what Spaceworld might have looked like! You will also find event that weren’t in the original red and blue version, because they were ported over from yellow version. It is possible to catch all 151 in either version, but encounters are slightly different. Personally, I love the Spaceworld asthetic. (As a warning, the overworld player sprites you see… they were edited by myself before building the actual roms.) Another thing you will see in battle is the higher resolution back sprites, that’s a result of awesome rom hacking and making more space for pics!
But Old Stuff???
Okay, so undoubtedly as you look on at awesome features and crap, you ask yourself if anything got fixed or more pokemon got added. I can assure you the most important glitches are still available to use. You can still Mew Glitch before Misty, my party had two Mews in it, one was a fighter, the other was an HM slave. There was a lot of work to preserve other certain glitchy, duplicative pokemon, too. There are no new typing, so soloing Squirtle starter is still viable and getting a Nidoking for your whole playthrough still works, too!. If you really wanted to, you could route and speedrun this sucker, it wouldn’t be much different from the normal runs other than the fact you can obtain 151 easier.
So, to wrap up the whole of everything. This was a great hack to playthrough, I highly recommend it. Being that you can get the source and change things up, you can get whatever pokemon you want as your starter just to mess around. I enjoyed going down nostalgia lane again, but it was a fresh experience with the graphics changes and the events added from yellow version. It is faster paced due to the running, which makes the underground paths a lot more bearable!
If you would like to get a piece of this go check it out on the bluestarredstar github. You can also find links to other hacks in the readme there and the instructions on how to compile/patch a rom. Also, more screenshots.