About Me

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I am a gamer, an artist and a hobbyist video game designer. When I'm not doodling one resource or another, I love to read books, make paper crafts (cards) and bake yummy goodies.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Week 8: Finishing Re-vamps

Summervale is another of the early towns - back before I had a virtual ton of resources to use and no understanding of how painted tiles style worked. In my mind, Summervale has always been a forest town. Away from prying eyes, it's the perfect example of man trying to tame nature. It's also a fortress town, surrounded by tall walls that would protect from animals and human invaders alike.

One of the things that always bothered me about the early version of Summervale is how perfectly fake it looked. Sure, a small part of that was due to the fact that a large portion of it was mapped in editor and thus kept the square shape. But the bigger part was the fact that it was just too linear and clean. The trees had that artificial quality of "planted for curb appeal" look that wasn't a part of the concept.

So, I've mostly finished redoing Summervale and I'm much more pleased with the results:
It's still a work in progress and there will, undoubtedly, be some more changes. But the town now has a slightly country flair with just enough old European influence to be really charming. Another thing that will be added to the map is more NPCs wandering around as well as some animals (butterflies, for instance!). 

Other things I finished last week:
- Burgunda Port has been completely finished, both outside and inside. After having redone the outside of the town, some of the inner maps no longer matched.
- I've made the Burgunda Port shops (general store and magic store) more like actual shops. There are now shelves and tables displaying merchandise, and Miki's competitor is actually looking at rope.
- I've slightly enlarged Alistair's home. Don't worry, it's still an illustration of Alistair's bachelor life. But he now has a sink, a study desk and a lovely window with a view of the outside.
- I fiddled with the quests a bit. Since a couple of you mentioned wanting to have a quest record, I've restructured the "completed" section of the quest log. Quests will no longer disappear from the log when they've been completed.
- I've added a couple of new NPCs in Burgunda Port. This is mainly due to the fact that Burgunda Port is supposed to have a church (that I never got around to mapping before). You will be able to see the church now, but you won't access it right away. Once you return to Burgunda Port, Penelope will be able to visit the church and learn an important field skill.


  1. I love the revamp of the new town. ^^

    I played a little of this (I think from Shigi's forum) and liked it. I look forward to the next release. :D

    I should be working on my game, but I don't know what to do while my fiance does all the mapping and coding. Lols. You're sooo cool to do this all on your own! XD

  2. Oh my gosh! He has a SINK now? :P What a wonderful bachelor!

    The new Summervale looks very pretty. I was never a fan of the earlier version, but this one is just so much nicer. And it has more of a forest-town feel than it did before! Wonderful job. :)

  3. @StrawberryFlower:
    Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed the game!

    Working solo can be both awesome and frustrating at times. It's really nice to be able to work on things at your own pace and not have to depend on anyone else to finish things. But, on the other hand, making a game is so much work that an extra set of hands really helps. There are a lot of moments when I think that it would be nice to have someone do the parts of game creating I don't like *cough*database*cough*.

    On the other hand, it's also the quickest way to learn. In very little time, you learn how to take feedback in a way that's useful and productive. You also learn which details and features are worth the effort. A great example of this is completely custom graphics. While new graphics are awesome and may even be feasible if you have some graphical talent, they're also a GIANT time sink. When you're making a game that has 10 locations and 1 hr of gameplay, you can go all out. But if you're going for a lengthy game with 100 locations, you will quickly find yourself completely buried in graphics and possibly even burn out/abandon the project altogether.

    If you can, try making a small project solo. It doesn't need to be long or complicated, but it will give you a chance to understand game design better. Even something as simple as figuring out how to event a puzzle is a great way to feel accomplished.

    Hehe! In his defense, he did have a water bowl before. But a sink is much fancier. He's got a glass door on his oven, too. *giggles*

    I'm very happy with how Summervale is turning out. I'm redoing some of the interiors, too. Some of the houses have a slightly different shape/size and some of the older maps aren't even close to being believable.

    I was planning on re-doing Sparrowight Academy as well. There's a main quest objective and a few side quests that take place in there and I would need to create new maps to accommodate them. I might as well spruce up the current maps, too.