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Topics - DarkWolf

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Maps In Progress / Blake Stone SVG remake
« on: September 02, 2021, 09:15:35 AM »
I'm getting close to finishing this, so I wanted to share a preview. I've been working on re-doing my Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold maps in SVG. Those files can then be loaded into a webpage to create a viewer with some interactive options. Not sure when it will be done, as it's always the small details which take the most time and energy right?

If the image tag doesn't work:

Mapping Tips/Guides / Texture Skewing Tool
« on: May 10, 2012, 11:58:38 AM »
I know a few people were interested in the skewed textures from the Wolfenstein (and friends) maps I did.  I wanted to play around with SharpDevelop, so I wrote a small C# program that can generate textures similar to the ones I used for those maps.  Yes, floor textures are still a bit distorted, but everything fits together pixel perfect (which was more important to me).  You'll need .NET 3 to run this.

Example Scene

Mapping Tips/Guides / dispop - Distributed PNG Optimizer
« on: November 02, 2011, 10:57:57 AM »
This is the project I posted about several days ago.  For those of you who didn't read the original post, dispop is an API that allows you to upload PNG images, and have them compressed by other machines.  Kind of like those grid computing projects, but not nearly as sophisticated.  I've decided to open the project to user registration.  This means you can create an account and use the basic web-interface.  I have chosen not to release any API documentation as of yet (if you're determined enough, you can figure it out via the source of the web tool), but it will be available once enough images have passed through the system.

VGMaps Social Board / Looking for some help testing a project
« on: October 24, 2011, 08:52:48 AM »
Remember a long time ago I said something about one day building a distributed tool for pngout?  Well, I've actually got a very early version of it done.  I was wondering if you guys would be willing to upload images so I can collect data on pngout's performance. I'll have to make an account for you since I've got it closed to the public right now.  Please PM me if you are interested.

More info about the utility:

* API based, will allow you to create your own scripts or tools.  Uses HTTP POST and JSON, no SOAP or anything complicated required.
* First does single-pass of image using best color depth and 0 filter or palette images, 5 for RGB
* After are images have gotten their single pass, servers work on running combinations of filters and block sizes
* Simple web-based interface supports multi-file upload or web-based upload from URL

Mapping Tips/Guides / Map Crunching
« on: January 03, 2011, 02:40:38 PM »
Well, I've been busy this holiday season and I haven't had time to work on anything sprite or mapping related.  Anyway, before I start on possibly doing some Phantasy Star II maps, I wanted to play around with an idea.

A lot of maps have a lot of empty space that has to be compressed into the file.  Now compression works well with empty space, but I wanted to see if I could shave the file size down even more.  My first test I did with Rick Bruns's Castlevania castle map.  (Sorry, just needed something quick for a test).

Dracula's Castle

My version is HTML based and is approx. 48K smaller.  However, the output image file is 4736x1664, opposed to the original 9920x2096.  38% of it's original canvas size.  This should make it easier for lower-memory computers to display (I did some testing with the large Faery Tale Adventure map).  This is somewhat promising.

What my method does is this:
It breaks the image down into square sections.  It then loops through these sections to see if they contain 100% empty space (based on a user-supplied color).  It then breaks the image down into "strips" and then attempts to put those strips into an output image.  It records the "moves" the program makes and can then later generate an output based on the "crunched" image and XML data file.  For the HTML output, I use absolutely positioned DIVs and background image offsets.

* Smaller file size for images with large empty areas
* Adjustable section size
* Can be applied to existing images
* Eliminates hot-linking
* Could help with google indexing (especially for VGMaps)

* So far, file size reduction is good, but not amazing
* User needs a web browser to view map
* Could break later with browser changes
* While HTML pages could be indexed by search engines, you would loose image search (i.e. Google images)

Things to test/do:
* Test more existing maps (could use some suggestions)
* Try making a map that's set on a grid, then running it through the script
* Test viewing the map on more devices and browsers

Maps In Progress / James Bond - The Duel (Genesis)
« on: May 01, 2009, 04:59:56 PM »
This is a short game, so I decided to map it.

VGMaps Social Board / I just can't stop!
« on: March 31, 2009, 04:17:06 PM »
Ok, these aren't maps (don't get any ideas either), but I wanted to apply my isometric method to something more complex.

Doom ISO Test


Mapping Tips/Guides / imagediff
« on: November 06, 2008, 08:09:52 PM »
Okay this started as a fairly simple project.  Make an application where you could move different images and have only the pixels that match in each image appear in the final result.  Have everything else appear as a neutral color.

Well I come to find that controls in .NET can't have a transparent background.  Transparent in .NET means, "take the color of the parent control/form" and make it the background color.  So I had to re-write the way the drag and drop worked and things rendered.  In the long run it ended up better as zooming was easier to accomplish.

Anyway, this is a beta release. I've been working on it off and on for two weeks and before I go to bed I want to at least release it here.  It's main purpose is to rip sprites, but it could have a mapping use as well methinks.  Anyway let me know what you think.  After all this experimenting I might get around to finishing Raw Candy too.


VGMaps Social Board / Anyone Sprite Rip?
« on: October 16, 2008, 02:37:55 PM »
For better or worse I decided to redo my Pixel Warehouse site, which has sprite rips from video games.  I started it several years ago for god knows why.  Probably the same reasons I map, whatever they are. I've added the ability for users to upload sprites so hopefully I'll have a better range of games this time around.

VGMaps Social Board / Google Chrome
« on: September 02, 2008, 03:57:50 PM »
Anyone try Chrome yet?   There isn't much special on the UI end of things, but I read through the technical stuff this morning and it brings a lot of cool things to the table that I hope other browsers adopt.

Mapping Tips/Guides / vgstitch
« on: June 03, 2008, 12:53:41 PM »
I sat down last night and ported my PHP stitching script to C.  I think I got things as fast as they are going to get.  I still have some things to finish before I release it.  It did a Kishi Densetsu map in about 23 seconds, the first level of Mario goes in about 11.  I also did some isometric samples, like SimCity 2000 and Light Crusader.  Those take more like 4-6 minutes.

Just a heads up, this isn't the same thing as Maxim's program.  This one is for human-taken screenshots with overlap.  Each consecutive map has to overlap one of the previous images, but it doesn't have to go in any particular direction.  There's no threshold, other than a masking (or neutral) color, so animation / sprites will have to be masked out.

Kishi Densetsu sample:

User posted image

Gaming / VGMQ Plug
« on: November 24, 2007, 05:58:57 PM »
Video Game Music Quiz

I recently redid my quiz site after abandoning it for almost a year.  Not sure I've ever mentioned it here or not, but this is a good occasion to do so.

Map Gab / DecapAttack (Genesis)
« on: September 08, 2007, 08:33:07 AM »
Level structure fell into my lap.  The game engine is similar to Psycho Fox.

Stage 1-1

Maps In Progress / Streets of Rage 2
« on: September 02, 2007, 03:40:39 PM »
First map done with Maxim's modified version of Gens Kmod.

Stage 1

Map Gab / Map Count Statistics
« on: September 02, 2007, 09:46:00 AM »
I did this before, but this time you can see the information in a few different ways.  I only spent a few minutes on it, so of course there is room for improvement.

And yes, map count doesn't mean everything, but I think it's still an interesting statistic to follow. stats

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