Theres tons of RPG making programs on the net, why in the hell not a side scroller maker!?
The program would be completely and totally user friendly, so even the stupidest of morons can make thier own video game, yet give the advanced programmer room to make his own programs. It could have SS express or SS advanced.
In express mode, you first choose a character style, what his measurements are, what his weapons will be, and then choose from a large selection of main characters. You can give him a large assortment of guns or swords too. Now you give him a life bar, and a handicap of how much the average attack will take off.
Next you would need to pick a game type, and would have a nice selection in that too. You can have a side view game, or a 3d-ish TMNT 2 type game. You also choose between free flowing, non-level based game like Metroid and Castlevania 2 or the traditional level based game like Castlevania or Contra. Now you build your levels. You start out with one blank line, which is the ground level. Use your editor and add color and pattern to the ground. Now add holes, raise it up, lower it down in certain spots, and add ledges. Even add things like hooks or ropes to swing from, and an assortment of added extra options.
Now you add your enemies. Pick from a gigantic selection of enemies, and put as many of them in as you want. Give them an amount of HP also, making them more powerful or weaker. Each enemy would also have a short list of different attack patterns to choose from. As for bosses, you'd have a large selection of them too. You would have a really large list of attack patterns for bosses, and could give any boss any attack pattern, theres thousands of combinations.
Next, if you are building a seperated levels game, you would repeat the process and begin again on a new level. If you are building a free flowing game, you would build the entire game first before adding enemies.
For music, you could skim through a list of music pre programmed or you could upload any MIDI or WAV off of the internet.
Now if you did this, you'd have a game, but you could throw in optional goodies like an inventory system, special levels like underwater stages, bonus mini games and special items like new swords, keys, or whatever you want.
This express mode would lead the user by the nose, but still give him a lot of room for creativity. In advanced mode, you would have a pallette to create your own characters and bosses, and also program thier attack patterns, but you'd have to be good to do this.
With all the RPG makers out there, I'm surprised no one has done this yet.