Poll

What color palette do you prefer in Shantae Game Boy Color ? (see picture in topic)

sunrise
1 (25%)
day
3 (75%)
twilight
0 (0%)
night
0 (0%)

Total Members Voted: 4

Author Topic: What color palette do you prefer in Shantae Game Boy Color ? (picture in topic)  (Read 1904 times)

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Offline Cleeem

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Hello everyone!  :)
Click in the picture to enlarge to help you find out what is your your favorite part of the day! ^^
You can also change your answer at anytime if needed.

I am just curious, so please tell me by voting above! ^^


« Last Edit: February 19, 2021, 05:56:02 AM by Cleeem »

Offline Cleeem

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And yes, I made the complete maps for the game for my pleasure. 8)

TerraEsperZ the Great
Thank you for being there my friend. Your own difficulties and choices helped me a lot to make simple choices because I too was likely to consume a lot of time. You are so much like me, so perfectionist... But I have arrived at a moment when I must make choices to go fast and have no regrets in my works...
My maps will be published separately from you on vgmaps because I will provide the whole thing in the marked category (while you prefer the unmarked versions).
Thus, each of us will find its account with pleasure, joy and lightness! ^^

Surprising colors
I was surprised to have half of my maps in one shade of color while the other half was in a different shade...
One half will be modified to harmonize the whole thing...

What was difficult
The capture was difficult due to a background that I was unable to hide and with a scrolling at a different speed.
So I had to delete the background after the capture and add it separately. Fortunately, the Overworld was not concerned by this.

My choices
I don't intend to provide maps for all 4 shades of color, one will be enough!
Because yes, making several colors is an adventure where I go my way (knowing that there are 4 shades and even 8 if you play on the Game Boy Advance instead of Game Boy Color but those ones are not the good ones because the game was designed for Game Boy Color! ^^).

I say a little goodbye
I gave all my time and love for these maps.
Since life is short and nothing is certain in the short term, I wanted to be sure to leave after producing what I loved (a great source of motivation to go fast, ha ha! ^^).
A big thank you to all those who exchanged with me, I was delighted to share these good moments! :)
New adventures await me!  ;)
« Last Edit: February 19, 2021, 06:53:44 AM by Cleeem »

Offline JonLeung

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It's been a while since I've played this game.  Wouldn't there be a forest or two, and/or wherever you meet Rottytops, that might look better with one of the night palettes, whereas the rest of the game might be in day palettes?

Offline Cleeem

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This is a great idea! :)
I'm going to make the night maps for the levels named Swamp & Mud Bog.

Offline JonLeung

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I can understand if you only have time, or simply choose, to do just one version of each map.

Don't feel you have to limit things for my end of it though, I'd be happy to have all times of day for all maps.  ;P

Offline Cleeem

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Ah ah, all is finished and I will give the maps in 1 or 2 days!  :)
I would like to take the time to discuss about colors!

Tastes and colors
  • Some will want to discover every pixel and every color available.
  • For my part, I like it when maps tell a story and encourage exploration.
    Colors at night often reduce legibility and in my desire to make people discover and explore, the daytime is more suitable.
    I also like warm colors and that's why I will provide the "sunrise" palette.  8)

The 2 redone maps
  • Mud Bog seems inverted (blue colors during day), so I did it again with night colors (green)...
  • I made the Swamp by night. It is where Rotty open the gate to Cackle Mound level for you! It is very easy to make: the shortest map of the game
    (Ghost Forest and Archer Forest, which are right next door, are already dark and harmonize superbly with Swamp at night, so I don't need to make maps at night for those ones).

All 4 shades
If I had several lives and unlimited motivation, why not? ^^
Yes, it is possible to make all color shades in theory. 16 zones * 4 = 64 maps!
It could be fun to make animated gif for them! ^^
« Last Edit: February 21, 2021, 10:19:15 AM by Cleeem »

Offline TerraEsperZ

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I always thought there were supposed to be only two color palettes, daylight and nightlight.
And that the slight differences after the transition between the two was simply a slight coding error (like a loop calculating the color values between day and night going from 0% to 99% instead of 1 to 100%).
I would consider the palette you get after pausing/unpausing to be the true one but that's just me!

Since you're going to post a full map set, I'm almost certainly not going to keep working on mine. I was only done with the day version of each area and only had about 1.5 labyrinths done so there would still be a lot of work to do and not a lot of incentive to do it.

What I am honestly super interested in is the map names you'll be using. There are a couple of hidden areas that don't have official names that really bothered me when I was working on it.
Can't wait to see the result!
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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Ah ah,
I understand your wish not to continue the maps for the game.
Yes, it was very long to make and I even wondered if I wasn't going to give up because of the Dribble Fountain...

For the names of levels, it is like Mario Bros.:
you don't change level because you take a pipe to the clouds,
you change level because the game is giving you the info (with a world map or a new title on the screen).

So, I didn't cut out anything by myself and simply used what was already there...  ;)
If it is not completely clear, you will discover more in detail in a few days! ^^

Offline JonLeung

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Hi Cleeem,

Looking forward to it!  I've enjoyed every Shantae game but it's been a while since I played the original.  Looking at maps is sort of like reliving those games, or vicariously re-experiencing them through your work.  I also like Game Boy Color games in general.  They often look like NES games but many games (like this one) seem to have a more saturated palette, which I find neat.  Aside from Link's Awakening and Pokémon, I didn't play very many Game Boy or Game Boy Color games at the time.  There's a certain charm to them, sort of a simpler time, but my parents were hesitant to get or allow me to have a handheld (my Link's Awakening experience was primarily on Super Game Boy), so for years I saw ads and reviews in magazines like Nintendo Power and imagined what it would be like to have such adventures on hand, literally.  So I feel I know Game Boy games but also not.  Shantae is on the very end of the Game Boy Color era (seeing as how it has GBA enhancements) and I definitely played a lot of GBA (and DS) at the time and maybe doesn't apply to my Game Boy memories and I don't know why I'm ranting about this late at night but there's no point to delete that all now...  :P  I guess I mean to say it's nice to get some more GBC.


Hi TerraEsperZ,

I look forward to all your projects, since you are among the longest-running mappers who always has great work when you do finish them, which, despite what looks like "droughts" of activity (though I'm sure you're working on something, just not always visible or having to do with maps at all) I know you come through.

In the comparatively short time Cleeem has been around, we've seen great maps from him.  I don't think anyone has any doubts that the Shantae maps won't be awesome.

But if it shuts down your WIP on Shantae because there's no point in redundancy, I hope that isn't discouraging, and if anything, it means you will be able to focus on other projects that aren't likely on others' radar.  I'm excited for your Drill Dozer maps, if those are still happening.  :D  Keep up the great work!

Offline Cleeem

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Hello Jon,
it is always a pleasure to read anecdotes about personal tastes and gamer adventures. Thank you for that! ^^
If you like the Shantae games, here is a special gift for you with the publisher, Way Forward.  :)

Here the sound of the logo:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0k6EFDHHUQ

Here is the music created from the jingle logo:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zIaLnS9vU3s


Hello TerraEsperZ,
Thank you for mentioning the names of the levels.
I changed the name of the last level because it was missing from the official names. So I put something else in perfect coherence with the overworld.
Thank you very much! ^^
You will also see that one of the mini games is called foot race. I based myself on the notes of the paper manual sold with the game and which is scanned on the web.  ;)
Yes, it was possible to use only 100% official names! ^^
« Last Edit: February 23, 2021, 12:58:33 AM by Cleeem »

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Hi JonLeung,

There's a bit of grieving involved for every project that I end up abandoning, like a dream I have to give up because I'll never be able to make it come true.
Some are closer to my heart though but I often have difficulty making the hard choices as to which project to hold on to, and which to abandon.
I think it's ultimately a good (though painful!) thing when someone else comes along and submit full maps for a game I've been working on and off for years without much passion and often, just hanging on to that dream. That means I can finally move on to other, more meaningful games.

I think my present signature is actually honest for once as to which games I really want to finish mapping.

1) Drill Dozer (GBA): I stopped mapping this for a very stupid reason at a time where lack of mental energy (cause by a combination of untreated sleep apnea, work-related stress and severe social anxiety disorder) made me very susceptible to stop for a stupid reason.
It's back on but it's moving forward at a slower pace because:
   a) I never stopped working throughout the whole pandemic so not much free time;
   b) I actually pushed myself to have more regular social interactions for the last year or so and that ends up eating several hours I would otherwise have used for mapping;
   c) I try to play more games in general so that too takes time away from mapping.

2) Sonic 3D Blast (GEN): I don't know when I'll get back to this one but I'm at least confident that if someone else maps it before me, they'll most likely stick to the actual in-game maps which do not fill the whole area between the screen borders and are full of bad tiling and inconsistencies.
I want to correct as much of those problems as I can which won't make them perfect (some perspective problems aren't fixable for example) but will at least make them much nicer to look at.

3) Naya's Quest (PC): An unknown indie flash game that plays with perspective, this game was practically made for me and is probably the single most stimulating challenges I've encountered while mapping since Battletoads' last level with the rotating tower.
It just takes so *long* to make a single animated map that visually portrays the location of each tile through elevation and rotation and there are 30 rooms in the normal mode in addition to several more in the New Game+ mode.

Hi Cleeem,

Sorry for the overlong psychoanalysis, I didn't mean to hijack your tread!
I'm really curious to see your final maps.

Regarding the map names, you most likely used that huge scanned one from also appears in the manual but with all the area names added to it.
I've been trying to find out whether that map is official of not for years!

Strangely enough, according to The Cutting Room Floor, there are a bunch of unused names inside the ROM that would have indicated the name of the area you've just entered, as well as the areas east and west respectively. They were most likely from an earlier version of the game because they don't fit the final game but it's a neat thing to discover!

If you are curious, here are all the unused directions :
Welcome to the Scarecrow Field.  West: desert, East: Spiderwood Forest
Welcome to Spiderwood Forest.  West: Scuttle Town, East: Dribble Falls
Welcome to Dribble Falls.  West: Spiderwood Forest, East: Water Town
Welcome to Flushstone.  West: Dribble Falls, East: Slime Flats
Welcome to Slime Flats.  West: Flushstone, East: Quaggore Swamp
Welcome to Quaggore Swamp.  West: Slime Flats, East: Splinter- Grave Grove
Welcome to Splinter-Grave Grove.  West: Quaggore Swamp, East: Stumprot Forest
Welcome to Stumprot Forest.  West: Quaggore Swamp, East: Mount Brazier
Welcome to Mount Brazier.  West: Stumprot Forest, East: Pinestone Bluff
Welcome to Pinestone Bluff.  West: Mount Brazier, East: Mud Bog
Welcome to Mud Bog.  West:  Bandit Town, East: Sandy Dunes
Welcome to Sandy Dunes.  West: Oasis Town, East: Scuttle Town
Welcome to Skitterclaw Desert.  West: Golem Mine, East: Wasteland
Welcome to Wasteland.  West: Skitterclaw Desert, East: Scarecrow Field
« Last Edit: February 22, 2021, 10:09:14 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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Hello Jon,
Way Forward created a music from his logo but my second link was identical to the first one.
I changed this by editing my previous message. ^^


Hello Terra,
here is a long answer. ^^

About official names

Yes, I know about the Cutting Room Floor but the Overworld map is the best one to get official names and here is why.
In the game, a few dialogues reveals the real name of certain zones as illustrated here for example:


Mound Pointy (overworld map) is named Mount Brazier (Cutting Room Floor).

Here is the correspondence for fun, overworld map (Cutting Room Floor)
Scarecrow Field (Scarecrow Field)
Spider Forest (Spiderwood Forest)
Waterfall (Dribble Falls)
Rain Storm (Flushstone)
Snail Wasteland (Slime Flats)
Swamp (Quaggore Swamp)
Ghost Forest (Splinter-Grave Grove)
Archer Forest (Stumprot Forest)
Mound Pointy (Mount Brazier)
Eagle Wasteland (Pinestone Bluff)
Mud Bog (Mud Bog)
Ladies Desert (Sandy Dunes)
Mens Desert (Skitterclaw Desert)
Naga Wasteland (Wasteland)

About making maps

I also want to say you do not  hijack the tread at all!
The truth is, I'd rather have someone else make the maps to save me from work. But I'm so eager to see them for certain games that I've decided to make the ones that don't exist yet.

When you talk about grief, it makes me feel funny with a lot of kindness. I would experience it as a joy that someone else has taken care of a game I wanted to map. At most, I prefer to work in collaboration with someone and give him the credits for his work while completing it to save me time, but this was not always possible! ^^

I read about your work in the forum and when I saw that the big levels were still to be done, I had the feeling that I was doing something totally new for the game.

I took a different direction for the overworld.
I already knew exactly the colors I wanted and I knew exactly how to cut the levels... without forgetting my way of producing the visual aspect of the cities. ^^

Since you said in your signature: "A ton of stuff that will never be finished", it motivated me to take care of Shantae ^^, knowing that you could eventually publish your own maps one day if you felt like it.


About lack of energy

About lack of energy, anxiety and other important feelings like this one,
the first thing I want to say is: this is not stupid at all to talk about it.

We are currently in a world that likes to make us unhappy and sad. It is normal to feel a lack of energy.
As I often say: to recognize oneself with love where difficulties arise. Then, use something good for us.
One thing that feels good around me is listening to certain music where I had very positive feedback.
Here they are for fun, amusement, joy, lightness, curiosity and regained energy. :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toXWG4bAYak
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uwJBX_YNxF0
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ICiywG-O9I
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GG-WK54XgEc
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMlAd5kRRHU
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XSfKVLm1G8A
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvlvh3RbwY8

You can hear 2 at the same time (mixed), it is really fun for more energy!  ;)
I am now listening to 1 & 2 together. ^^

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Having just perused through the finished maps, I'm happy to say that they are great looking!

You've managed to solve in a very elegant way an issue I was struggling with, namely those smaller forest and waterfall areas reached through caves and how to name them.
It never even came to my mind to simply group them along with the connecting caves on their respective main map, thereby avoiding the naming issue altogether!

However... I have to be honest and say that I'm not a fan of the various little adjustments you made to the labyrinths to make sure that all the doors would align correctly.
I too was frustrated by the way connected labyrinth doors would sometimes be completely off vertically with one another but actually changing the rooms that are visible in-game themselves would kinda feel like lying to me.

I hope you don't mind me being honest here and take it as the constructive criticism I mean it to be.
I'm no stranger to edits myself like with my Sonic 3D Blast but I've always kept it limited to offscreen areas.

I do understand the impulse though. I remember on a previous iteration of VGMaps that's now gone, there was a discussion about what to do with the vertical "gaps" between areas in the 2D Metroidvania games. An old forum member (either Zeric, Wileee or Edsword) made a mockup for Symphony of the Night's Long Library where he added in a connecting area that required editing the existing portions to fit it in.
It was impressive work but it was felt that altering the existing map was dishonest, not to mention how much work it would have been to do the same for *every* other gaps throughout the whole castle!

Anyway, it's one hell of a project that you've managed to complete so kudos to you!
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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Hello TerraEsperZ,  ;)
Congratulations for noticing a few details but the description is in great need of completion.
Here are all the details.

Labyrinths and modified rooms

labyrinth 1: 0/25 modified
labyrinth 2: 1/20 modified (1 tube on 1% height)
labyrinth 3: 3/20 modified (2 long tubes on 1% height + the small end of a room on 2% of its surface)
labyrinth 4: 4/23 modified (3 long tubes on 1% height + a small piece of room on 2% of its surface)
labyrinth 5: 0/13 modified

The remarkable work of the developers

From the game developers' point of view, it's obvious that they wanted alignment everywhere, and I'm impressed that they were so successful in doing so because in 2002, these details didn't allow to check that easily with computer tools.

Other games in comparison like Symphony of the Night or Equinox

Be careful to compare what is comparable.
I don't know the details for Symphony of the Night.
For Equinox, I chose to add arrows because of giant holes between some rooms.

In the case of Shantae, the work of the developers is almost perfect. I was tempted to add arrows but it was ridiculous because the level differences were as rare as they were tiny.

That's why I don't understand why you say:
« I too was frustrated by the way connected labyrinth doors would sometimes be completely off vertically. »
This may apply to other Metroidvania but Shantae is not concerned.

Cheat

What a strange word...
We all wish to restore qualities of fidelity and authenticity from the gaming experience.

What is authenticity?

If you have made the complete maps of Shantae's overworld, you must have noticed that there are some bugs in the backgrounds with some big black squares and graphic bugs. I fixed that and is it cheating ?
Anyway, making maps is cheating because the player is never given the opportunity to experience height on the levels, it's a decoy.
The visual presentation with a screen rotation that you have done in some games does not correspond to the real experience of the player but is it cheating ?

More and more details not mentioned... Cities

The upper part of the cities is double in size compared to the lower part with its interior rooms.
You didn't mention that and yet, it's just huge! ^^

More and more details not mentioned... Items

It is impossible to display more than 6 items on the screen of a store and yet there are 10 on the same page in Water Town . You will never be able to display that in the game.

More and more details not mentioned... Shantae's house

There are 2 to 3 clouds above Shantae's house in the very first level, but it would have been weird to add them (it would have created a "chimney effect" with an absence of sky on the whole horizontality of the level (with an extra sky only above our heroine's house).

More and more details not mentioned... Fireflies by day

They appear only at night.
I put an icon with a moon and it's a form of cheating from a purist point of view.

More and more details not mentioned... Enemies missing

It's not accurate, it's inconsistent with the player's real experience...
But it's wanted by me because the main thing is to present the secrets of the game and it would have made things a lot heavier. Moreover, I would have found it aesthetically much less attractive.

In Quackshot, I put the enemies because they are rare and give a real artistic sense, otherwise it would seem empty. It's a matter of choice according to each game.
That's why, again, you can't compare things with Symphony of the Night, it's not reasonable.

Humor

This is a dedication of what you won't like, especially for you! ^^
http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/5105/

Conclusion

Finally, I may understand better why I prefer when others make maps:
I find them all beautiful, made with the heart and saving me many hours of work. ^^
At least, while making the maps for the games I like and that were missing on vgmaps, I had a lot of fun and learned some nice things from a technical point of view.

Thank you to everyone who made maps.
We are all amazing to go on this crazy adventure! ^^
I am 100% satisfied with the result for Shantae (otherwise it would be easy for me to make some modifications to misalign the verticality in some rare cases).

Perfectionism

I could almost make philosophy about what perfectionism is...
Is it restoring bugs in the game?
Is it displaying every single pixel, even if it's not right on the screen?

What's certain for me is that I try to do as simple as possible (in every sense of the word) to get to the essentials so that it's as visually understandable and accessible as possible with a desire of  giving an artistic sense to it! ^^
« Last Edit: February 24, 2021, 05:58:04 AM by Cleeem »

Offline TerraEsperZ

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I wasn't trying to nitpick or find faults, honest!
It's just that door alignment was a pet peeve of mine while mapping and the Cackle Mound in particular drove me crazy when I was working on it so I noticed those adjustments right away.
And in terms of misalignment, I meant when moving around the map in debug mode. The first two labyrinths are nearly perfect in their raw forms but then the third has neighboring doors that are off by 48 or even 56 pixels. That's huge to me!

I didn't notice any of the other things you mentioned or at least, they felt natural to me.
I guess I'm still just a bit too invested in Shantae's maps to be objective!

I'm sorry if I came off as being judgmental as that wasn't my intention. I'm just not that good at expressing myself and the language barrier doesn't help.

My intent was simply to discuss the choices we make as mappers in representing the truths of a game's world and how we fell about them.
We all have changes we are personally fine with and others we aren't.

For example, fixing a few missing tiles feels more like correcting a bug to me. It's not accurate to the game, but it *feels* right and I did it a few times with Sonic Advance (GBA).
When mapping Gradius (NES), I even flipped a tile horizontally in the last level because it was the only one that didn't fit with the rest and was clearly a mistake. And in the next to last level, I moved an enemy a bit because it was the only one that was off-centered inside a background "cell".
Like you said, developers don't always have the time or interest in making such things perfect as it's barely noticeable while playing but plain obvious when laid on a map.

And that ROM hack is probably something I'd do myself!
It was very common for NES games for example to have all sprites being lower vertically by one pixel for complicated programming reasons.
That's totally something I'd fix *everywhere* if I was mapping such a game!

So please, take my previous comments not as an attack, but as the personal opinion of a colleague who doesn't always agree but fully respects and supports you!
« Last Edit: February 24, 2021, 05:56:14 AM by TerraEsperZ »
Current project that are on hold because job burnout :
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)