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Linked Seasons - a tileset AND quest!


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Poll: Feedback and recommendations (30 member(s) have cast votes)

Would you use this tileset for your quest?

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What would you MOST like to see in the next release (please only select up to two)?

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#1 NoeL

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 02:14 AM

cvNlyfs.gif Linked Seasons cvNlyfs.gif
A tileset AND quest!
Lk1nWdW.png


What's this?
Yeah, so I made a tileset for everyone... and a quest too, why not.

The Story:
Ganon has sealed himself inside Hyrule Castle. Unite the Triforce and whoop his butt once again!

The Features:
cvNlyfs.gif Dynamic overworld that changes with the seasons, opening up new exploration potential!
cvNlyfs.gif Four exciting dungeons!
cvNlyfs.gif Classic Zelda feel with a fresh coat of paint!
cvNlyfs.gif A brand new tileset for the PureZC community! :love:

The History:
A few of you may remember seeing this project back in 2013 when it was first started. I wanted to build a new tileset to give back to the community here, but for various reasons it was never finished. I posted a few screenshots of this early work on my art galleries (DeviantArt and Pixel Joint) and even after several years they were still garnering a really positive reception, so I decided it was time to revive the old project and see it through to completion - and develop a short quest to showcase it! For version 1.0 I've focused primarily on the classic items/enemies/combos, so don't expect whisp rings and hookshots just yet.

The set has seen some changes since 2013 - most notably the mountain tiles - and these changes were mainly done for usability. I wanted the set to be as simple and elegant to use as the Game Boy sets, but with a more natural, softer aesthetic (kind of Minish Cap meets BS Zelda). I'd managed to capture the aesthetic, but the set was a far cry from being elegant - quite the opposite in fact. Details needed to be layered, there were way too many transitional tiles... it was ugly. So I made a compromise, and that's what you see here. Everything looks a bit more square and boxy, but it's MUCH easier to use.

One feature I'd initially intended to implement was to make use of the combo shift feature of ZQ: holding shift and pressing +/- changes all the on-screen combos to the next/previous combo in the table. The idea was to organise the combo table so that you could build a screen in Spring, then change it to a different season simply by scrolling the combo table. This... didn't work that great in practice. It took way too long to scroll through to the next season, and with the relatively few season-specific tiles it was quicker just to manually switch them out. The alternative was to have all four seasonal variants of each combo in the one row, allowing season changes with a single shift+/-, but with essentially one usable tile per row it would make building screens a nightmare. Then there was the fact that as cool as it may have been, very few people would even make use of the feature. So the feature was scrapped, and instead the season-specific combos are just tacked onto the end of the default Spring set.

The Download Links:
Both the quest and tileset are feature complete but haven't undergone user testing, so if you find bugs in either please let me know! Once the kinks are ironed out both will be submitted to the database.
Linked Seasons - the Quest (beta1.0)
Linked Seasons - the Tileset (beta1.0)

The Future:
Like the set? Want to see it grow? What would you like to see in version 2.0? Post your feedback here!

One last note: I'd LOVE to see how other people tackle the quest, so I'm putting the call out to all Let's Players. Record your playthrough of the quest and share your experience!

 

EDIT1: Oh, just one other thing I'll mention since it wouldn't be immediately obvious, but in the quest (not the tileset - I left that stock) I've tweaked a few of the enemies for balance. Moldorms are slightly faster (and have different sounds), blue darknuts are slightly slower, and blue wizzrobes have less HP and are weak to a particular item.


Edited by NoeL, 04 November 2017 - 08:22 PM.

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#2 Jared

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 10:56 AM

DUDE. I thought this was dead! I was waiting for this forever....IT'S REAL!! I'm gonna play the quest asap. It's gorgeous, and I'm looking forward to playing it!!


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#3 Eddy

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 01:55 PM

My god, that tileset is really pretty. I looked through the tileset and everything looks very nicely made. This seems fairly simple to use, so I can definitely see people making more quests out of this. As for the quest itself, I only played a bit of it to make time for others, but I got up to the end of Level 2. The quest itself seems pretty simple, but I really like how the seasons change after you complete dungeons. I only played through Spring and Summer, but I definitely like the changes between both of them, especially bodies of water drying up by one outer ring of tiles, sand tiles being incredibly hot and other things like that.

 

But yeah, really good effort with this, I'll probably pick up the quest again when it's released to the database, but for now, this is some really impressive stuff!


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#4 Anthus

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 02:01 PM

I love the mountains. I may record this since it sounds relatively short. I always loved the season changing mechanic from OoS, and hope to see it return to a main game, so this is right up my ally, plus nice new graphics to look at.

So who is going to be first to remake Zelda 1 with it? :P

#5 NewJourneysFire

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 03:51 PM

I'd use this to try and create my own IP with an original story. The benefit is that the quest would survive if Nintendo tries to put the banhammer on all Zelda related content. Nintendo cannot touch content that's made here that is completely original. 



#6 Shoshon the Elegant

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 03:59 PM

I like how this is really cool. I'm gonna try it out with Fantastic Dungeons and Where to Find Them.
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#7 Anthus

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 04:13 PM

Played a bit of it, and I love the tileset. I made a few minor changes for myself, like enabling the space bar map, and adding dungeon music to Level 1 (that isn't stock, I mean). Other than those minor quality of life things, I think it is a really solid set, and quest. If it had set-ups for every ZC feature, it could be a pack-in, for sure.

 

I went ahead and started recording this. I got through the first dungeon, and after adding in some new music (it's nothing against the quest, I just can't listen to Zelda 1 MIDIs anymore :P), it was really nice. I will continue to play this, and record it, but I'm posting this here for now cause it might be possible to get stuck in Level 1 at about 10:35 in the video. If the player runs out of bombs, they will have to F6 since the bridge goes away when you leave the screen.

 

Video



#8 NoeL

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 05:39 PM

I love the mountains.

Funnily enough the mountains are one of my least favourite bits of the tileset. XD I've already made alternate mountains to be included in the next release.
 

So who is going to be first to remake Zelda 1 with it? :P

Haha, when I first started this set that was what I planned to do with it. I got about halfway through the overworld and level 1 done before I realised just how massive Zelda 1 actually is! Designing/building a quest half the size was a lot more manageable, and hopefully more interesting to play too.
 

I'd use this to try and create my own IP with an original story. The benefit is that the quest would survive if Nintendo tries to put the banhammer on all Zelda related content. Nintendo cannot touch content that's made here that is completely original.

Hey, if you want to use it for your own IP go for it. Although, if you're using the tiles outside ZC for anything commercial I'd ask you to purchase the assets here (or just PM me). The sprites aren't up for sale yet, but I'll get around to it.
 

I like how this is really cool.

What a compliment. XD
 

Played a bit of it, and I love the tileset. I made a few minor changes for myself, like enabling the space bar map, and adding dungeon music to Level 1 (that isn't stock, I mean). Other than those minor quality of life things, I think it is a really solid set, and quest. If it had set-ups for every ZC feature, it could be a pack-in, for sure.

I disabled the map because it's not persistent between seasons and that felt a bit weird (and to a lesser extent because the map was never intended to look seamless). But by all means make whatever QOL changes you want - it's unpassworded for a reason.
 

I went ahead and started recording this. I got through the first dungeon, and after adding in some new music (it's nothing against the quest, I just can't listen to Zelda 1 MIDIs anymore :P), it was really nice. I will continue to play this, and record it, but I'm posting this here for now cause it might be possible to get stuck in Level 1 at about 10:35 in the video. If the player runs out of bombs, they will have to F6 since the bridge goes away when you leave the screen.

Good catch! Thanks for that, I'll fix it in the next release. And thanks for recording - I'll go have a watch!

 

EDIT: Aww, you changed the overworld music too!? You'll miss out on all the seasonal flavour... or "seasoning" XD


Edited by NoeL, 04 November 2017 - 05:42 PM.

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#9 Shoshon the Elegant

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 06:09 PM

Yeah. Well this was what I was hoping to see in the expo. A new tileset that I could use for FDaWtFT. I haven't downloaded it yet. So I don't know what all is in it. If I were to recommend anything though it would be including at least a few basic scripts in a package.

#10 NoeL

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 06:14 PM

Yeah. Well this was what I was hoping to see in the expo. A new tileset that I could use for FDaWtFT. I haven't downloaded it yet. So I don't know what all is in it. If I were to recommend anything though it would be including at least a few basic scripts in a package.

I'll take that recommendation on board. Any scripts in particular?

 

Also, the tileset is pretty light on features at the moment (barely more than you'd see in Zelda 1), so unless FDaWtFT is a pretty basic dungeon romper it might not be suitable... yet. But as I said in the OP, let me know the kinds of things you'd like to see next and I'll incorporate them into the next release.

 

Oh, and for everyone, just one other thing I'll mention since it wouldn't be immediately obvious, but in the quest (not the tileset - I left that stock) I've tweaked a few of the enemies for balance. Moldorms are slightly faster (and have different sounds), blue darknuts are slightly slower, and blue wizzrobes have less HP and are weak to a particular item.


Edited by NoeL, 04 November 2017 - 06:34 PM.


#11 Shoshon the Elegant

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 06:34 PM

I'll take that recommendation on board. Any scripts in particular?

 

Also, the tileset is pretty light on features at the moment (barely more than you'd see in Zelda 1), so unless FDaWtFT is a pretty basic dungeon romper it might not be suitable... yet. But as I said in the OP, let me know the kinds of things you'd like to see next and I'll incorporate them into the next release.

My basic recommendations are what I'd recommend for any quest, the Item Pickup Message, and the NPC Script. In my opinion, those are the only two basic scripts I'd consider more recommended. There are others I really like that aren't as essential.

It is a basic dungeon romper right now. So at the moment, I'd just be seeing how I could work with it. It might be enough, might not. It's a really nice start either way.



#12 Saffith

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 07:56 PM

Looks great. And it's always nice to see an original tileset.

The one thing I'd criticize is the rain. It's a bit too obvious that's it's moving along two vertical lines. Maybe a longer animation that staggers it a bit, or just slant it a little? Not sure how much difference either of those would make, though. A second tile with some splashes would also be nice, and maybe one with ripples for the water.

Do you have any plans for CSet 4 in the dungeon palettes? I like having a secondary floor color.
 

One feature I'd initially intended to implement was to make use of the combo shift feature of ZQ: holding shift and pressing +/- changes all the on-screen combos to the next/previous combo in the table. ... It took way too long to scroll through to the next season, and with the relatively few season-specific tiles it was quicker just to manually switch them out.

You know, if you hold Ctrl, it'll advance 16 tiles at a time.
 

What would you like to see in version 2.0?

More functional items, first and foremost. Chests, crystal switches, all that stuff. Maybe that goes without saying. Besides that, I'd say a wider variety of trees would be the biggest thing, especially since they're so distinctive.
 

I'll take that recommendation on board. Any scripts in particular?

That font looks pretty nice. If you fill it a bit, I could make a tango.zh definition for it.
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#13 NoeL

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 08:40 PM

The one thing I'd criticize is the rain. It's a bit too obvious that's it's moving along two vertical lines.

Haha, yeah I was getting frustrated trying to make a decent animation so just cheaped out there. Will fix that up later.
 

Do you have any plans for CSet 4 in the dungeon palettes? I like having a secondary floor color.

No plans yet, but that's a good use for some of it. There are a few unused slots in the overworld palettes too, so room for expansion.
 
 

You know, if you hold Ctrl, it'll advance 16 tiles at a time.

I did not know. XD Still, I don't think the feature is worth implementing - not yet anyway.
 

More functional items, first and foremost. Chests, crystal switches, all that stuff. Maybe that goes without saying. Besides that, I'd say a wider variety of trees would be the biggest thing, especially since they're so distinctive.

I'll add it to the poll... oh yeah, there's a poll now. :P
 

That font looks pretty nice. If you fill it a bit, I could make a tango.zh definition for it.

It's been so long I can't remember where I got that font from, but pretty sure I didn't make it. If I can track it down I'll PM you.


Edited by NoeL, 04 November 2017 - 08:41 PM.

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#14 Arthas

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Posted 05 November 2017 - 01:26 AM

I played through the entirety of this and as a ZC casual/noob. You already know my detailed impressions NoeL.

 

Speaking of additions, more functional combos (for more complex puzzles) and npc's would be nice. Would bring quests/dungeons more variety outside of just combat.


Edited by Arthas, 05 November 2017 - 01:31 AM.


#15 Moosh

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Posted 05 November 2017 - 02:40 AM

I played through the quest and found it pretty enjoyable. It's a really solid classic style quest. I especially liked how you handled the world changing slightly as you beat the dungeons, felt very BS-esque. Some assorted criticisms/areas that gave me trouble:

  • I found this quest's music to be absolute murder on my ears. I've already grown rather unfond of MIDI music due to ZC's various bugs and even for MIDI this quest's arrangements were just bad.  By the end of Level 1 I just muted it and played something else on top. :(
  • Some screens in the overworld had enemies falling from the sky and I wasn't clear on...why? The seasons changing after you beat each dungeon I can buy, but raining enemies? That's just too far... :P
  • Heavy push blocks and regular push blocks operate on different rules and that bugs me. I think they should all require killing room enemies or neither should.
  • I had a lot of difficulty getting through level 3. It probably took me longer than 1, 2, and 4 combined. The first big problem was I was under the false impression that the candle was a dungeon item. I was able to explore enough of the dungeon without it that I assumed for a good while that I was missing a bomb wall.
  • The next thing that stumped me in level 3 was the second entrance. This one's mostly my fault, but I didn't realize that one room I could peek into was a second entrance because it didn't have a special doorway or anything to grab my attention. I could have figured it out because it was at the bottom of the map, but I just didn't. Also didn't help that the overworld screen the dungeon was on was rather cramped so I didn't expect there to be room for a second entrance.
  • Lastly, I didn't think to try pushing the statue in the fake triforce room for some time. The reason for this I think is that I generally consider pushable statues to be a "newbie design" thing, so I just don't bother trying it in some quests.

 

I haven't actually looked through the tileset yet, but some visual stuff I noticed in my playthrough:

  • Link's walk animations are really distracting, especially when moving up. It feels like he's animating faster than he should, although IDK if ZC settings can fix this. It also looks weird when compared with the enemies which can have 4 frames of animation max. I think the tileset would be better off using BS animation by default.
  • I'm not a fan of the smaller shadows. If they scaled based on the Z-axis that'd be grand, but as it stands I think it looks best for shadows to be a full tile width.
  • I noticed Aquamentus has a less smooth flashing animation than the other enemies and it stands out. Is there a way to line up the palettes better so that doesn't happen?

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