Well, kind of.
They’ve released a version of VIP 6.
But it’s not really a finished one by any means. It’s more a beta version with a title screen hastily added and a few other minor tweaks made.
Kind of like Mario Tennis Ultra Smash or Animal Crossing Amiibo Festival, except by a bunch of random people on 2ch rather than a professional game development company.
But what killed it? What killed VIP 6 to the point the team just decided to toss it out the door and be done with the whole thing?
Well, resources really. Previous VIP games (like 4 and 5) did well because there was a large community contributing their work. There were great overworld graphics by 660. Carol made awesome bosses like Julius and Tanasinn. And others contributed their own levels.
Above: Some of the finest aspects of the VIP series.
Unfortunately, the Super Mario World ROM hacking community is going through tough times at the moment.
For one thing, a lot of people are getting bored and moving on. This is especially true in the Japanese scene, where a dedicated community for the hobby didn’t really exist anywhere for years. Oh sure, there was a regular 2ch topic and a few final hosting sites. But there was nothing like SMW Central, and hence nothing to really keep the community together.
It also didn’t help that the best remaining SMW hackers there got bored with the whole VIP deal. So instead of working so much on VIP levels like they did in the past, they got together on Twitter and put together ASPE Mario. That was a simpler hack, sure. But it was also a much better designed one which didn’t try to drag things out for 9 worlds and had mostly decent level design throughout.
Above: An example level from ASPE Mario
And that trend continues with carol. Why?
Because the Brutal Mario maker has other projects to focus on. Like Brutal Mario itself, which needs done after 10 years. Or Mario’s Nightmare Quest, a project very close to this site… He just got bored of the VIP games and moved on.
Either way, the result was clear. The best level designers, the overworld designer, the final boss programmer and a bunch of other important people didn’t contribute to the game, and it simply couldn’t be finished as a result. It took months upon months of pointless discussions and plans going nowhere, but eventually the game was considered impossible to finish and released as is.
So it’s not a very dignified ‘end’ for VIP 6.