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LoZ: The City of Fear


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#1 Sir Evan

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Posted 24 October 2009 - 02:02 PM

The Legend of Zelda: The City of Fear (Tentative Title)

Story: 13 years ago, the dark king Ganondorf led a great army. They ravaged the all of Hyrule, and overthrew the king. Many died at the hands of Ganondorf’s army, led by the ruthless commander Hollow, but there were those who still resisted. A man who was from the forest village, clad in a tunic and bearing a sacred sword, led those who fought for the freedom of Hyrule. One night, the resistance struck at the base of Hollow and his army, the City of Fear. Causalities rose on both sides as the battle dragged on into the night. Hollow himself went out to great the forest man. Their fight lasted long and, when it seemed most dire for the man, dawn broke. As the first ray of light hit his sword, the power from the sun’s rays give the sword a new strength. Letting out a scream, he took the sword and brought it down upon Hollow’s skull. In a single flash of light, Hollow and his entire army was obliterated. The City vanished. The man slowly made his way back to his village, gravely injured. He collapsed at the village gates, bringing the news of the defeat of the army. His 4-year-old son, Link, stood by and watched as his father died from his wounds.

13 years later, in the present, Link is awoken by shouts coming from the village square…


Features:

-Uses a 2.5 build (currently 1075)
-Made with the EZGBZ Tileset
-5 “main” large levels
-Numerous “mini” dungeons – both required and optional
-Most likely will feature scripting and the other 2.5 stuff
-Fairly large-scaled Hyrule – features forests, deserts, mountains, plains, lakes, and more
-4 main human settlements – a forest village, Hylia Port, Karkariko Village, and a mountain town
-Most, if not all, items will make it into the game
-Music from a wide variety of games – both MIDI and Mp3

Dungeons:

Level 1 – Silvus Temple (Name to be changed)
Items: Stepladder, Red Candle, ??

Level 2 – Machine Chapel
Items: Magic Boomerang, Hookshot, Roc’s Feather

Level 3 – ?? ?? ??
Items: ??, Wand, 2nd Bracelet

Level 4 – Eagle’s Nest
Items: Din’s Fire, ?? ?? ?, ?’? ??, Ice Arrows

Final Level - ?’? ??

Screenshots:

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Last Words:

So you all know I’m relatively new here. But that doesn’t mean I don’t know what I’m doing. I’ve been working on this since around February, and the first dungeon is almost done. Progress was slowed during the summer, as the recent Mac builds weren’t working (fixed now). Yes, I use a Mac. I see this as the biggest problem with my quest, cause most of you probably don’t own a Mac. But if you do, hey, congrats, you’ll be able to play it fine. So yeah, if you’re still reading this, you can stop now.

--Sir Evan

So yeah, this an obvious repost of my QPF opening preview. New information will follow soon.

#2 Sir Evan

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 09:38 PM

Okay, I finally have some down time. I meant to get this up last weekend, but I couldn't. Anyways, onto the first new update!

Sheol Tower

Sheol, the Hebrew underworld. What does this dungeon have to do with the Hebrew underworld? Nothing, really. It is kind of ironic that the underworld has been turned into a tower, but let's not get into that. The tower lies out in the deepest parts of the forest. Very few people every go there (or have any desire to get near the accursed tower). Accursed? Well, yeah, of course its cursed! It's named Sheol, after all! How's it cursed? Meh, you probably won't run into any ghosts or anything evil at all... probably. Well, the tower stretches six floors above ground, and descends underground as well, how far no one knows. A holy lantern used to ward of evil forest creatures is said to be enshrined in the basement, and a tool used to cross short gaps can be... found? However you would describe using old pieces of wooden ladders as something useful. Some other relics may be found even deeper in the tower in addition to those two. So, without further delay, let's get to exploring!

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Ah, the entrance to the tower. You'll end up here a lot.

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D'oh!

[NOTE: Ignore the name in those last two shots, I was too lazy to retake them with the correct name.]

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You're no good to me over there!

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Trees? INDOORS? WHAT IS THIS?!

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This does not bode well...

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Okay, it's technically two towers. So sue me.

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I love block puzzles!

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Whaaa? I where did I go?


And with that cliffhanger, I will end this update. ...One last thing, ignore the subscreen, the lack of enemies, and fluctuating/missing items, they'll be there eventually, trust me. So any comments or criticisms?

#3 SpikeReynolds

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 09:57 PM

Nice shots. GB is making a roaring comeback.

#4 Sir Evan

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Posted 09 November 2009 - 09:59 PM

Thank you, Fausch.


So for the few of you who care, I made a Support Bar icon_biggrin.gif

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It's not particularly great, but good enough for now. I might make a different one eventually.

The Code:
CODE
[IMG]http://i616.photobucket.com/albums/tt242/SirEvanPZC/CoF-UserbarOthers.jpg[/IMG]


#5 Twilight Knight

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 05:53 AM

This quest looks really good. The dungeon shots are very well designed and I adore them. Though, my concern is that you never finish this quest... Either way, I'll put a support banner in my sig.

#6 Sheik

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 03:43 PM

I must admit I did not take the leisure to read the whole thread but I'd like to leave a few lines behind.
First of all, I really like you're style. There is a thing about it, that does the randomness not look random; I do not quite know how to phrase it. I am not saying that in a 'it looks bad'- but in a 'well done' -way. Nearly no one was able to give randomness a nice look and there's quite a number of questdesigners that work with the randomness (and sadly fail). You do a good job though. There still are things that bother me but I am going to tell you later what I mean in detail.
I did a lot work with GB graphics myself and I was not too bad at it I was told. Since I see really quite some potential in your work I'm goning to tell you what you could do to make it look better. It is a little guide of sorts, but please do not feel forced to take my two cents in considerance.
The biggest problem you have while working with BG tiles is there extrem limitation. There's rarely some dungeon detal tiles that exist just for the heck of giving the screen more variation. So the designer (talking of both - overworld and dungeon screens) has to find a way to give the screens what makes it interesting other ways than just overloading the screens with tiles and yet more tiles on tons of layers (that usually is the way a lot of people create screens with the DoR-Tileset - DoR gives them a hell of tiles and a lot of people overdo it).
First thing I am going to point out is the thing you did. I myself never really pulled that aspect out as much as you did and that mainly is the thing that impresses me about your work. You go for randomness and variation . Everyone goes for variation or should at least but you have a special way to do so (that allows variation even with GB tiles). If you for example make the floor than you do NOT restrict yourself to one or two styles of floor tiles but you go with a great number of them. And you place them with a certain randomness. Also, you choose to colour them all the same so they do not really pop into the eye (like they would when they were all different colours). That way it's not getting too noisy and the viewer has a visually appealing sight. Than you even add for example this shallow water that gives a bit of flavour and highlights to it. Very well done. However, the way every coin has two sides using this technique on trees isn't that much of a good idea. The tree is such a big and eyecatching object in ZC that it is a bad idea to have more than two or at least 3 types of trees on one screen even in one area. That is also a sort of randomness but a bad-looking. Please take this in considerance and limit every dungeon/area to two, maximum three types of trees. You will see how it'll give more authencity and feeling to the areas / dungeons as the trees being big and obvious objects that give a special touch to every area / dungeon.
To sum up tip number 1: Break tile-varity-limitation by using different types of the same tile but do not use that technique on big/eyechatching objects.
Since it was the thing you did yourself I wanted to name it first. However, now let me say some pretty basic stuff for the sake of completeness. Make the player able to tell walkables from unwalkables. Since GB tiles are not very detailed it can be told most the time very easy. You will notice that despite you're dungeon screen have the same colours on the walls and the floor one can easy tell walkables from unwalkables. That is becuase they are designed with low detail and the black outlines on the unwalkables make them pop out. But now lets look with the goal of telling walkables from unwalkables at the shots of the snowy village. It is so monotone that it really is hard to understand it's structure with a simple look, one rather has to look at it for a second moment to get a idea. That is so beacuse basically every tile uses the same colour scheme and have no or very few black outlines. It would be a lot clearer to the viewer if the mountain-, house - and rooftiles (basically everything that is not the ground) had another colour or more contrast (for example because of black outlines). Talking of snowy themes it's okay to cover to rooves with snow, now problem here. Would be better if they had some snow sprited on them though but that's another topic. If the mountain were let's say grey and the houses wood was brown, than it would be a lot easier to tell what's walkable and what not, to understand the screen easy. And of course it's possible to keep style and match a theme without having every tile the same colour (inspired by the theme. That was a lot of speech, let me show you some example:
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Do you see how it's very understandable where the player is going to be able to walk and where not? Did you notice that you understood the idea behind it's structure/organisation just at the very first sight? That is because there is this big difference in the coulors of the different walkables/unwalkales. The dark mountain is obviously standing out whereas the light ground of course is the place to step you're feet on. Also, the theme turns out pretty good despite it having difference in colours.
Now, I must admit I was lying a bit. It is possible to use the same colours and yet make it obvious how the screen is working. To make that you need to work with tiles that are obviously designed. Because that's also hard to explain let me show you another example:
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It explains itself, I think. It may have similar colours but the tiles are so easy to understand that it's easy to tell how this is going to be played.
To sum up the second tip: Make the player able to tell walkables from unwalkables, to understand how the screen is working. Use contrast to achive that goal, either in colours or design of the tiles itself.
As you may've noticed the desert-shot has that blue highlights. They do add an intersting feature to the screen, they make the rather monotone design look less boring. If they were, let's say green or red however, they would fail to achive that goal and look out of place. So it must be the colour that makes them look fitting. The secret is the contrast again. This time it is the complemantary contrast (blue-orange in that example). If you're not working in black and white you have to think about the use of colours well. For that reason, let's look at the very first screen you posted in this thread. Do you notice how the orange and the green (both very bright and shining colours) bite each other? The human eye want's to look at both of them at the same time, that way they are irritating. It is totally okay to use green and orange together (though I most likely never would) but if you want to who have to take certain things into considerance. For every bright colour (and especially on main colours of the screen) you shold have a darker equivalent. That must not be the same colour but can be any other that looks fitting. Colour lives of balance. Now we're returning back to the desert screen and we notice - hey, wait! These also are two bright colours together! Why don't you mock around about them? Well, that is because they work together. The complemantary contrast makes up for the brightness of both of them and also the proportinal use of them. One colour is used only a litte (blue), the other (orange) is used a lot. By the way that also is a nice way to make important stuff pop out more. My recommandation: recolour the orange boarder-tiles either red or grey.
To sum pu tip number three: Think well of colour and contrasts and try to keep everything in balance! Also, use colour to lead the player though you're screen/game.
Now that we have though about the tiles themselves and there colouration we should look at placement. This is hard to explain. One gets a feeling for it when building a lot but there also are a few guidelines to stick with. First of all and most important: avoid squareness. There is less in the world of 2D games less boring than squarey rooms or walls. Sometimes it's good the make things squarey but most the time variating wall forms will do better. To give you an example of reasonable variation of squareishness and variating shapes I want to show you this two maps: Overworld-Map and Dungeon-Map. If something is squarish than it should have reason. Like it's a tower or somthing. Every other thing should not be squareish in general. There is a special thing about GB graphics when building mountains. Do not make them too high. If you want the mountain to be high rather build more 'stories' than building 4 or even more tiles high mountains. 3 is the maximunm, more looks strange. Again, they can be higher, but please with reason than. Now to tackle the choice of tiles. If you want the player to move around on a screen a little more to make things more interesting do not (NOT!) place random things. It's obvious that you have to place something but than please make it part of ruins or another tree or something but no random blocks or statues that are placed totally randomly. It is so much better when the player can think "Aha, there is a broken pillar in my way, I have to move around that" than "Huh? There was placed a random block to make me move around it. Strange.". The tiles are the thing you're game consits of (in a way). Place them will well thought. The choice of tiles tells the difference between an 'epic forst temple' and 'another green dungeon'. It's not only a thing of the naming.
To sum up tip number 4: Place your tiles with well thought. Think of things as logically build. Try to avoid random things like blocks but rather choose tiles that tell a story.
That's it for my little GB-screen-design guide. Basically you can use it for any tileset but I tried to talk especially about GB graphics. Yeah, I know it's a wall of text, but I only am trying to help you using all of your potential.
So long, Sheik.



#7 Sir Evan

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 09:36 PM

Wow... Thanks for all of that help Sheik. I read it all, and am taking a lot of it into consideration.

Actually though, I've already been planning to fix a bunch of things you mentioned. The final snowy mountains probably will not look all that much like they do now, as I don't even like them all that much. And the randomness I'm really not going to overuse. It's just that 11/18 of the screenshots that I have posted are all from the same dungeon, so they all have that same style. The place itself is in ruins, so the screens were designed to be in disarray. So if you think that everything I make will be as random, don't worry. It should be confined to specific areas. And about the variety of trees, I just haven't gotten around to straightening those out yet. I was planning on reducing the forest to only 3 different trees.

Now about the colors. That's one thing that I will definitely not be changing. And there is a reason for that. On the color wheel, green is the opposite of red, and yellow is the opposite of purple. Now compare the screens in my last post to the final screen in the same post. They are both from the same dungeon, yet they use different color schemes. Green and an orangish yellow, and purple and red. The areas themselves are supposed to be opposites in the same whole, a ruined temple, and a... well, it's a secret, for now. But, to show the contrast, I flipped the palette into its color opposite. Then I also flipped the surfaces on which the colors were used. It's not a very obvious contrast,and no one would probably have noticed it, but it's one of the reasons why I picked those colors, and why I'm not going to change them.



Now, in unrelated news, I was planning on posting an official update sometime this weekend. However, time got away from me, and I really hadn't worked on anything to remarkable. I made a few more dungeon screens, and worked on the intro sequence a bit, but other than that, nothing. I should have some more time available to work on it starting next year, so I just need to ask you to have a little patience. There might be some things in those previous paragraphs that interest you though.

#8 Sheik

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 07:09 AM

Well, you are welcome. I just realized that I (was tired to deaht and) made a horrible lot of spelling mistakes. Pretty sorry. But I don't feel like correct 'em all.
However, on the colour thing: since you are using GBC you actually CAN overdo colours resaonable but than I really would recommand you to stick with a 'gameboy like'-style. Because light green and light orange/yellow together looks pretty disturbing. After all it's you're choice of course. I, however would've made the dungeon in natural colours like grey's for stone (since I have a thing for it) and tried to bring the colour theme across unsing details in the colours I like to theme the thing with.

Edited by Sheik, 07 December 2009 - 12:07 PM.


#9 Sir Evan

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Posted 13 December 2009 - 10:22 PM

I was going to try and post an update last weekend. But I was gone from 3:00 PM on Friday to noon on Sunday. Then I was going to try and post and update this weekend. But I had an essay to write, a chemistry project to work on, and a Christmas tree to cut down. I tried to post an update next weekend, but I had semester exams surrounding it. So my goal is to post an update around Christmas. Sorry for the inconveniences.

In short, been busy, update in a week or so.

#10 Sir Evan

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 09:18 PM

Oh hey update

So I sort of lied last time. I knew that I wasn't going to get much done recently, and a Christmas update was a pretty far-fetched idea. I'm not sure if work will pick back up soon. I hope so, but it really depends on what happens in my personal life. But I still fell kind of bad about getting a QPF and then doing so little. So here.

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The Legend of Zelda: The!

A very, very in complete title screen. I haven't worked on it all that much, so it's obviously not the final image. I may actually run out of room using that current design. icon_wink.gif
Anyway, if the current design stands, the lettering will be the same, with "of" being identical to "the," and "city" and "fear" being slightly larger and in gold. Other than that, nothing else special about it.



Oh yeah, comments and criticisms are appreciated. Even if you just say, "You're a crazy fool who should resign himself to an asylum."


#11 William

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 09:28 PM

*removed due to the fact that it was substanceless and stupid. (Removed by William)

Edited by William, 08 May 2011 - 06:10 PM.


#12 Sheik

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Posted 06 January 2010 - 04:00 AM

"You're a crazy fool who should resign himself to an asylum."

No seriously, I think that the title screen is fine as it is but it does not remind me of a GBC-Zelda game at all. Please go for the LA/OoS/OoA one. Will look SO much better, I promise.


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