Mushroom Forest Progress

Content and general development discussion, including maps, quests, and server code from the development team.
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Mushroom Forest Progress

Post by Falcata » 31 Jan 2008, 10:56

I'm starting a new topic for reporting my progress on the Mushroom Forest. As 5t3v3 pointed out, it looked like a mushroom festival, and still does. Right now it does need more variety among the mushrooms, but I haven't really had time to make any new mushrooms between the actual mapping, college, and running my BESM group.

In any case, I've decided to split the cave into two areas, divided between north and south. I did this because it improved the loading/saving time, and also would allow the area to use up less memory. I've also experimented with the particle engine, and now some of the mushrooms are able to puff out spores at random intervals (thanks to Crush for the advice).

The "smokestack" mushroom I made produces black spores, the giant puffball mushrooms (based on the real-life ones) produce pale yellow spores. Yosuhara's glowing mushroom produces glowing spores (as does the blue mirrored variation I made of it), and his green-and-orange mushroom produces bluish-beige spores with tiny cyan particles. Or at least, the one with the full nest of spores does.

I think now is the time to figure out where to place the entrance of the mushroom forest. I can think of a number of areas that it could be placed, such as the lamp snake cave or the cave entrance next to the bat cave. It could also be placed on one of the new maps that will go between the woodland village and the trade city. According to this thread, there will be a mountainous area north of the woodland village, which is another possible location for the Mushroom Forest's entrance.

In addition to the entrance's location, I think it is also time to figure out what quests and/or NPC's the cave will have. I've had an idea for a while now for a "Mushroom Hermit", who is a man that is obsessed with mushrooms. He is also a little looney due to years of inadvertently breathing in spores and eating psychedelic mushrooms. The Mushroom Hermit could serve as the source for a quest or two, the reward being one of the new mushroom hats.

If anyone has some thoughts, suggestions, or comments, please post them here.
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Post by yosuhara » 31 Jan 2008, 12:38

I think that entrance to mushroom forest cave should be placed in lamp snake cave...

and nice idea about that npc, it sounds very interesting
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Post by Falcata » 31 Jan 2008, 15:52

Yeah, that's actually where I planned on it's entrance being from the beginning. If that is used as the entrance, I'll modify the lamp snake cave a bit to include some mushrooms near the entrance, and perhaps fix some of the graphical errors on the map.

And before I forget, I think that the subject of monsters should also be discussed. We can, of course, use the standard Spiky Mushrooms and Evil Mushrooms, but I also think that some new monsters should be added to the cave as well.

A few monsters were already discussed in the old topic. One was a stationary monster that attacked by puffing out toxic spores, and the other was a floating puffball mushroom that attacked in a similar manner. It also explodes when slain, releasing a large cloud of spores.

Whether or not the spores do damage is another matter. I do not know if eAthena supports "death throes", or attacks that are executed by monsters when they die. If not, then perhaps it could be implemented into the new server.
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new cave location

Post by MerlinX420 » 31 Jan 2008, 16:17

I was planning on adding in 2 caves from the basement of dimonds cove linking into the lamp snake cave. Since you plan on mapping that area I could leave that to you. I don't know what I could do with the cellar doorway I have mapped. Perhaps it could serve as a another entrance. Or the 2 mpas I create could serve as another link in the cave chain.

bat cave-->snake lamp cave-->Mushroom Cave 1-->Mushroom Cave2-->cellar cave 2--->cellar cave 1--->Dimonds Cove basement.

I like your idea of the mushroom forest and the new creatures it would contain. As far as quests go I could help with the scripting. (I've gotten quite good with the NPC Scripting,) I like the idea of the mushroom crazed hermit.

I thought of putting black scorpions and red slimes in my first cave. (Give a place other then the mine for these creatures as it becomes crowded with many people going after the exp and drops. And the 2nd cave being inhabited by snakes (to drop leather for the leather worker and perhaps give a home to the fire and poison skulls.

If your going to do the caves then I could concentrate on extending the forest maps to the northwest.
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Post by Falcata » 31 Jan 2008, 19:27

Yes, but connecting most of the underground regions of The Mana World might actually be a better idea, perhaps creating something similar to the Underdark. Anyways, the part of the cave that I was planning on connecting to the lamp snake cave is the southern section, with a few links to the northern section. Originally, before I enlarged it, I had planned on the entrance going in at the northwest corner of the map. But, since the new entrance is going to be in the southern map, we could use the northwest entrance as the link to Cellar Cave 2.

By the way, I'm also adding a third area to the mushroom forest, a smaller cave filled with a much larger number of the spore-producing mushrooms. The air in this cave would be so thick with spores that it would be toxic, causing damage over time to anyone who visits it. Some more powerful monsters could be placed in it, and perhaps some hidden treasure or rare item drop that would make it worthwhile to risk entering the cave.

I'm guessing that the way that the "poison gas" thing would work is having a script running that would periodically "attack" every player who is in the cave at set intervals.

EDIT: I took a screenshot a moment ago. This image is of an area in the southern half of the Mushroom Forest, near the entrance to the Spore Cave, and it demonstrates some of the particle effects I created.

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Post by AxlTrozz » 31 Jan 2008, 22:21

I'm still unconvinced about the quality of the mushrooms and the cave itself, I would rather everybody be concentrated on finish them instead of been trying to mapping any yet.

But is just my opinion ;)
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Post by oliver » 01 Feb 2008, 00:50

Wow - the gas effects look quite good! That's giving the right athmosphere for that cave.

But the shroom pictures don't convey that feeling yet. The bright ones look rather like light bulbs, and the big green-red-blue one is too comic-like. The yellow shrooms at the walls and the glowing one are quite ok, though. Also the fly shroom on the left (in the other cave) is nice, as an easy introduction to the horrors of the shroom cave.

I think the cave should convey a damp (but not really wet - not potable water at all) feeling. It must be a bit like rain forest, but very opposite to the "live-friendlyness" of a rain forest - it's an evil place that threatens any life form that intrudes.
You probably remember from Star Wars "The Empire strikes back" that huge space worm that lives inside the asteroid, whose mouth seems like a cave at first. The damp and hostile feeling in that mouth (when they go out side the ship) seems quite appropriate.

Also, the light should be darker than now. It's a quite dark cave, just lit by maybe the sputtering flame of the lone adventurers lantern, and of a course the mysterious slight glow that comes from everywhere but doesn't have a clear light source. This light is created by chemical processes in the molds and mushrooms which involve stale water and poisonous gases which give it a yellow-brownish tone.

The shrooms can be quite big and upright in the corners (completely filling the corners and crevices), but on the ground they are not very big. Especially it looks quite weird on the current picture that the shrooms have such a narrrow base and such a huge "body" - surely they would be broken as soon as that hero has walked there.
So there should rather be a floor that looks like patches of small shrooms (small enough that it's not visible whether they are broken or still standing). On this floor there could be a bigger shroom every few tiles; but it would still not be that big, but look rather like a bowl lieing on the ground. And then in some caves there would be a spot that is apperently very fertile for shrooms; that's where a very dense thicket of shrooms is sprawling around a huge colorful master shroom (the big green-red-blue one from the picture).

If you could look into the minds of what lives down there in these deep caves (if you could call it life), you would see wickedness and evil (but not actually intelligence - that's why the evil stays down there and is only a threat to intruders). A normal dry cave with stone walls and no inhabitants has no feelings; but this is a living cave. The shrooms growing there have never ever in their dark lives seen any sunlight. They can sense that there is such a thing as "joy" somewhere - but not in this cave; there has never been and there will never be. And that is the source of the evilness of the beings in that cave. It's the reason why they despise everything that comes from outside and that may ever have felt sunlight.
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Post by Falcata » 01 Feb 2008, 01:00

AxlTrozz wrote:I'm still unconvinced about the quality of the mushrooms and the cave itself, I would rather everybody be concentrated on finish them instead of been trying to mapping any yet.

But is just my opinion ;)
Well, if that is so, then I'll consider this practice for my mapping skills. I'm not too fond of the mushroom quality myself. In particular, I hate the puffball mushrooms I made. They need lots of work. I'll toss out some ideas for mushrooms that can be made for the cave:

* A variety of real world mushrooms, such as Morchella, Fly Agaric, Shelf Mushrooms, and a redo of the Giant Puffballs.
* Giant versions of Cup Fungi. These ones would be tree-sized, and their fruiting body (cap) is filled with a pool of water. Another variation of it may be done with an empty pool.
* Some mushrooms that grow in the water might be interesting. That's how I'm using the large blue mushroom that AxlTrozz made. Another possibility is smaller mushrooms that can act as stepping stones.

Hey Axl, how's the progress on the mushroom tiles you've been making?
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Post by yosuhara » 01 Feb 2008, 01:26

I think you should go on with mapping, otherwise you can end up improving mushrooms and tiles forever, cause every time there will be some person who wants "this" and other which wants "that"... in my opinion, maybe you can redo that puffball and finally release mush forest maps. TMW badly needs new locations and additions.. IMHO
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Post by Len » 01 Feb 2008, 01:29

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(Screenshots from Trickster online)

This might be useful to generate some ideas
yosuhara wrote:I think you should go on with mapping, otherwise you can end up improving mushrooms and tiles forever, cause every time there will be some person who wants "this" and other which wants "that"... in my opinion, maybe you can redo that puffball and finally release mush forest maps. TMW badly needs new locations and additions.. IMHO
Development isn't something that needs to be rushed....
Ideas should grow and evolve (actually we shouldn't ever consider anything as truly finished)
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Post by Falcata » 01 Feb 2008, 02:04

I'll continue working on the Mushroom Forest, then. And once it is released, I'll probably continue to refine it.

BTW: Those graphics are pretty impressive. Looks like they were drawn by hand.
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Post by Dave » 01 Feb 2008, 02:21

yosuhara wrote:I disagree.. I think you should go on with mapping, otherwise you can end up improving mushrooms and tiles forever, cause every time there will be some person who wants "this" and other which wants "that"... in my opinion, maybe you can redo that puffball and finally release mush forest maps. TMW badly needs new locations and additions.. IMHO
I think it looks alright, but I don't agree that you should call it finished, simply because it's usable. If people are hungry enough for new areas on the current public server, maybe you should go ahead and have your practice map implemented, using this version of the tileset.. but I think it would be doing your work an injustice not to spend a bit more time refining it. ..and you won't be making mushrooms forever ;) :P You're making good progress with this, but you'll be happy after its kicked around a bit more. Look at it this way, it can pretty much only get better. The more refining you do, the better it will look. So even if you did work on it for like a year, it won't be wasted time, because it'd end up looking great.

Those screenshots from Trickster Online (which looks to be a fairly pretty game) make a good example of a less repetitive environment. I don't think you need many more varieties of mushroom (though it can never hurt).. but it would be REALLY cool if you made various sizes of the existing types, to help break up some of the monotony. There also seems to be a lack of small mushrooms.

I think the walls are one of the biggest problems with this tileset, though. I don't like the plain 'ol cave walls that much.. I can't put my finger on it, but I think it's the same sort of thing that I just mentioned about variation.. too much of the same tile next to itself can look really gross. Your mushroom forest, though it is a cave, should resemble more of a blend between the two stated environments.. In my opinion, the walls could be improved by placing more growth on them. Maybe see what it looks like if you try to go at it with the approach that there is a lot of fungus, vegetation and moss covering the whole place, and there is a minimal amount of bare cave poking out from beneath it all. Additionally with the walls, it'd be great if we could somehow get rid of the square tops, where the cave meets the black ceiling.

..about the screenshots from Trickster Online briefly.. when I see stuff like that, it reminds me how cool I think it would be to create the graphics with a less tiled nature, where entire areas have a unique set of images that as you stated, appear largely hand drawn. There's something about that sort of graphical environment that has a wholeness to it that seems like a difficult thing to accomplish with very minimalistic tilesets.
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Post by yosuhara » 01 Feb 2008, 02:31

dabe wrote:
yosuhara wrote:I disagree.. I think you should go on with mapping, otherwise you can end up improving mushrooms and tiles forever, cause every time there will be some person who wants "this" and other which wants "that"... in my opinion, maybe you can redo that puffball and finally release mush forest maps. TMW badly needs new locations and additions.. IMHO
I think it looks alright, but I don't agree that you should call it finished, simply because it's usable.
i never said we should take it as final or finished... i was just suggesting that he should release what he has and continue to improve it over time of course... i hope you'll get me right this time :)
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Post by Dave » 01 Feb 2008, 03:26

yosuhara wrote:..i hope you'll get me right this time
I'll get you right this time.. *jump-kick!* :P ..but seriously, it just sounded like you wanted him to make a map and be done with it. Sorry for the misunderstanding. :)
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Post by Len » 01 Feb 2008, 03:43

dabe wrote: ..about the screenshots from Trickster Online briefly.. when I see stuff like that, it reminds me how cool I think it would be to create the graphics with a less tiled nature, where entire areas have a unique set of images that as you stated, appear largely hand drawn. There's something about that sort of graphical environment that has a wholeness to it that seems like a difficult thing to accomplish with very minimalistic tilesets.
I think people ungodly underestimate what can be done with tiles

I’ve based my forest set on this professional tileset
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Btw a grass tile (or any other tile) could actually be 4 32x32 tiles that give a specific pattern rather than just 1 over and over again
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i never said we should take it as final or finished... i was just suggesting that he should release what he has and continue to improve it over time of course... i hope you'll get me right this time

Sorry yosuhara I was not trying to misinterpret you
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