Author Topic: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons  (Read 3091 times)

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Offline TerraEsperZ

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Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« on: July 14, 2020, 09:50:07 PM »
So, I kinda started mapping this game a few months ago but as usual, I took too long and someone else (Cleeem) has pretty much mapped the whole game ahead of me :(. Fair is fair though, as I am a master procrastinator after all.

So, what to do with the work I *did* manage to do?

Well for starters, the rotating Mode 7 overworld can't be easily mapped thanks to its rather fuzzy and imprecise rendering. It was the main reason I wanted to map this game so hard and it was a complicated enough process that I'm fairly certain no one else has done it the same way as me.

Behold, the kingdoms of the world:



I'll make another post tomorrow detailing the techniques I used to make this *technically pixel-perfect* (but not screen accurate) isometric rendering of the overworld map. There will be quite a bit of math involved, and most of it should be accurate too!

Oh and as the title implied, I would love to map every dungeon but to also enhance the graphics by adding custom shadows to make the 3D layout of every room easier to understand. Maybe in the distant future...
« Last Edit: July 14, 2020, 10:22:41 PM by TerraEsperZ »
Current project that are on hold because job burnout :
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Offline Cleeem

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2020, 12:49:02 AM »
I am a master procrastinator after all.
Oh no ! I can't let you say that!  :(
You were on a project with much more content than I was...  ;)

a custom, GUI-less, barely functional QB64 program to convert the colours to the right format
You could convert unocurate colors (my maps in bmp formats) to good colors with your tool... These maps could be a good base to make what you want...
Or if you'd rather move on, it'll be a great opportunity to free up some time.
I hope these new maps will be a win-win whatever you like best.  8)

the rotating Mode 7 overworld can't be easily mapped thanks to its rather fuzzy and imprecise rendering
I was unable to map these maps ...  Thank you so much for your fantastic work ! :)
I will read your explanations on the subject with great pleasure.  :D

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2020, 11:15:46 AM »
I am a master procrastinator after all.
Oh no ! I can't let you say that!  :(

I submit the following as evidence :
-Jet Grind Radio (GBA) : Every area has been fully mapped (no sprites or graffitis for individual missions though) and the files have been sitting on my hard drive largely untouched since 2018 (nearly two years). The whole project was started in 2011 (NINE YEARS AGO...)
-The Addams Family (SNES) : I have something like 30 maps that are nearly complete that are still waiting for a header in order to be submitted. And probably a couple of revisions of course, now that I have better tools and a different emulator with slightly different colours... They've been waiting for some love since 2015 (nearly five years...)
-Drill Dozer (GBA) : Once a very active project of mine despite every stage taking several days/weeks, I haven't touched it in since 2016 (nearly four years...)
-Shantae (GBC) : Started mapping it in 2013, restarted from scratch in 2015 (better tools), restarted from scratch AGAIN in 2019 (found out the colour palette was messed up in 60% of my files) and I'm still not done with the night and dungeon maps. Every day stage has been done though but again, nothing's properly finished and formatted for submission.
-Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (GBC) : I captured every map in the game in 2017 but then stalled and eventually put it aside while agonizing about how to connect and assemble everything.

...Yeah, I think "master procrastinator" is an apt description as far as actually *finishing* things. I'm almost always working on something but I rarely have anything to show for it :(.
I'm probably just like those indie game developers who keep working on their games, re-doing them every few years and changing details forever but never actually releasing them until long after they've become irrelevant.

the rotating Mode 7 overworld can't be easily mapped thanks to its rather fuzzy and imprecise rendering
I was unable to map these maps ...  Thank you so much for your fantastic work ! :)
I will read your explanations on the subject with great pleasure.  :D

I'm working on a bunch of graphics to explain everything, which is slowing me down a lot. I mean, I could explain it all textually but I doubt most people would understand what I'm talking about.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2020, 11:16:31 AM by TerraEsperZ »
Current project that are on hold because job burnout :
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Offline JonLeung

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2020, 11:45:17 AM »
I remember thinking that Jet Grind Radio - one of the very few Dreamcast games that I ever played and finished - actually looks cool on the GBA.  Ocean's licensed games are usually crap but for some reason I actually like The Addams Family on the Super NES (and though irrelevant to this topic, I even like its sort-of-sequel - no, not Addams Family Values, which I haven't played, but Pugsley's Scavenger Hunt - which I believe is a game based on a cartoon based on the '90s movies based on the '60s TV series based on the 1938 comic...)  And I sure hope you finish Drill Dozer; that's a great Nintendo game that's fallen off the radar, other than an assist trophy in the Super Smash Bros. games.

But Shantae is getting a physical Switch release as well as a physical Game Boy Color rerelease (!!!) courtesy of Limited Run Games!  That's got to be exciting, right?  Perhaps motivational?  ;)

Offline Cleeem

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2020, 12:07:12 PM »
Dear TerraEsperZ, what seems a default to you is a great quality for other ones.

I have an interest in french translation, looking for some hackings from english to french.
It is difficult to romhack and we only have one ou two people who can work on this today. Then, others translate games thanks to the hacking.

There is some humour and amusement when our super hackers said it has been 10 years or more that most of the projects are still sleeping...
For example, Phantasy Star IV was a very very old project and someone else translated it in french 10 years after the beginning of the project.
But you know what ? Everyone was very happy to put it out of the list !

So I was expecting you to be glad that a game is now finished to save you some time and besides, you can use my work to make shadows and other things. I am sure you can convert colors from my maps to get the perfect accurate values.  8)

So that is a very interesting fact that the most talented people are also the ones with toons of projects.
It is because they are working on several projects at a same time. I could not do that, not at all !  :D

I think the most important thing is joy when doing all these creations, or else it does not worth it.
So I hope everyone is happy here! ^^
I liked to put small pictures to show what the maps look like (a butterfly, a hat ...). It is what I like the most  :)

I wish you the best, doing what you like the most ;)
« Last Edit: July 15, 2020, 12:19:43 PM by Cleeem »

Offline JonLeung

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2020, 09:14:53 PM »
Well, TerraEsperZ, your map is now up!

I noticed you put the date of completion on the map - 2020.07.14, yesterday's date.  You know why July 14 is interesting?

The only other Equinox map we have is from Tropicon, which is a shot of the world as it appears in the intro.  Though it wasn't put up on the site until July 18, 2013, it appears that I received it on - you guessed it - July 14, 2013.  Exactly seven years in between the intro map and the full-sized map.

Pretty neat coincidence.  (Maybe you guys should have completed or sent them in to me on March 20 or September 22 or 23 to take it one step further...)

Offline Cleeem

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2020, 07:33:13 AM »
Cheers!
 :) ;) :D ;D 8)

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2020, 09:06:49 PM »
I haven't forgotten about the explanation by the way. I've just been really busy (even though I'm still on vacation) so hopefully I can post about it tomorrow.
Current project that are on hold because job burnout :
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Offline Cleeem

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2020, 02:29:12 AM »
The techniques for making the general map are so different from the dungeons...
Thank you again for taking care of it.  8)

While waiting for your explanations, here's an article from one of the game's developer himself.
It highlights the great technical differences between the general world and the dungeons.  :)

http://www.zee-3.com/pickfordbros/archive/view.php?post=251
« Last Edit: July 23, 2020, 02:33:52 AM by Cleeem »

Offline Cleeem

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2020, 02:11:54 PM »
-Shantae (GBC) : Started mapping it in 2013, restarted from scratch in 2015 (better tools), restarted from scratch AGAIN in 2019 (found out the colour palette was messed up in 60% of my files) and I'm still not done with the night and dungeon maps. Every day stage has been done though but again, nothing's properly finished and formatted for submission.
Oh! I forgot to say that I am a big fan of Shantae. I hope to see your maps for this game one day!  :)

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Equinox (SNES) - Isometric overworld & enhanced dungeons
« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2020, 02:43:36 PM »
Sorry for the lack of reply; I was just really busy for the past week!

First, I fell in love with a game I bought last month but didn't have the mental energy to play until now. It's called Outer Wilds and I played pretty much non-stop until I finally beat it after about 20 hours. This game felt like it was made just for me. I've always been fascinated with space and science-fiction (both soft and hard) and this game just grabbed my brain like the most addictive drug and stole me away from the world for a couple of days.

...And after that, I spent time working on a new pixel font for my personal use and I kept starting and stopping my illustrated explanation for Equinox' overworld because I wasn't happy with the results. I always feel that I'm not explaining myself properly, or that my math is too obscure (or just plain wrong). Can you tell that I have major confidence issues :P?

Again, perfect is the enemy of good... But I should be ready to post my explanation this week. I hope.

And yeah, Shantae (GBC) is another game I really want to finish mapping (and I have so many, this one is actually realistic!) and I'm already done with a good portion of it. I just need to get back to it in full production mode, which I'm having a hard time to do lately. But enough excuses!
Current project that are on hold because job burnout :
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)