Author Topic: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)  (Read 82285 times)

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Offline TerraEsperZ

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RE: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #30 on: July 09, 2009, 04:42:44 PM »
Funny, I just realized that I never even used PNGOut directly, only a combination of PNGCrush and PNGRewrite before using PNGGauntlet.



Revned, what exactly is that 'bash' thing? Some sort of script or batch utility? I'm afraid that with the name alone, "not 'nuff said" is more like it ;)



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Current project: Castlevania Legends (GB)



Upcoming project: Not sure yet
Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished

Offline Maxim

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RE: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #31 on: July 10, 2009, 01:51:23 AM »
1. Right-click -> open with -> go find pngout. No commandline options though. Works fine for paletted images.

2. Make a batch file that says >>pngout /f0 "%1"<< and drag/drop onto it or do the open with thing

3. Ever tried pressing Tab in a command prompt? Try entering the start of the filename first. Bash does a similar thing, but it's been in Windows for years :)

Offline Revned

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RE: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #32 on: July 10, 2009, 06:26:25 AM »
It's a Unix shell. You can get it for Windows if you're interested. PNGOut doesn't do more than one image at a time, so I just stick it in a for loop and let it work on every file in a directory.

Offline Maxim

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RE: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #33 on: July 10, 2009, 01:55:33 PM »
Windows does for loops too :) and PNGOUT tells you how in its usage info.

Offline Revned

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RE: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #34 on: July 10, 2009, 08:15:51 PM »
But I hate Windows ;-)

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #35 on: October 19, 2010, 08:10:41 PM »
I'm actually semi-restarting this project.

At first I only wanted to fulfill the request for maps of each individual area but after making a few tests I'm actually going to upgrade the main map.

-First of all, thanks to the experience gained while mapping Max Payne, I've found the memory addresses which allow me to play around with the position of the background layer. This will allow me to capture the water transparency in the Underground Reservoir perfectly since it was the parallax scrolling that was forcing me to try and recreate it imperfectly. I'll also redo the tiling of the glowing cavern background in the same area which I had improvised before;

-I'm pretty sure I messed up a bit and placed the highest part of the Floating Garden too high relative to the castle;

-Considering my intention to get the map of the entire castle printed and my desire to improve my (horrible) composition skills, I'm looking into including a scaled up image of the castle in the background of the map (first with a nice filter to get more resolution out of it, then simply enlarged to get a pixelated look to the final result). It shouldn't look too distracting when seen up-close, but will be really nice-looking when seen as a whole. I'm also doing the same with the Chaotic Realm and Boss Rush maps.

It will be a few days until I have anything ready to show you, but it should be a worthwhile upgrade.
Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished

Offline alucard

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #36 on: October 20, 2010, 10:55:12 AM »
This is awesome, I cant wait. Also its cool that you are making a new version too, thanks.

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #37 on: October 22, 2010, 04:43:18 AM »
OK, I'm 7still not finished with the castle itself since I haven't had time to correct those water transparencies yet but almost all the individual castle area maps are done. There's no point in showing those since I haven't done anything special about them; I'm reserving the big aesthetic changes for the large assembled maps.

I can show you however the revamped maps for the Chaotic Realm and the Boss Rush. As I said, I suck at composition so I'm essentially looking for honest criticism regarding the background images. Don't be shy!

Chaotic Realm:


Boss Rush:


Damn it, what's wrong with ImageShack and thumbnails?
Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished

Offline Maxim

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #38 on: October 22, 2010, 07:15:19 AM »
I think you need to make the backgrounds more "backgroundy" - maybe darker, and/or desaturated. Both are too bright at first sight.

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #39 on: October 22, 2010, 09:53:20 AM »
I thought so too but being mostly ignorant of technical terms like saturation and such, the only alternative I could think of was to make the background darker and it just doesn't look as good as desaturating it. I did a quick mockup at work with 50% desaturation and it looks much better without obscuring its details, and I'm looking forward to try the same with the full map of the castle.

Brightness aside, do you feel that having the image of the castle in the background looks good or is it still too distracting? I'm not exactly happy with the Boss Rush one, but I couldn't really come up with a better way to do it given its mostly horizontal orientation. As for where the idea came from, I was influenced by the way many game magazines presented their maps during the 8 and 16-bit era.

Anyway, I'll work some more on it and hopefully be able to share more tonight.
Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished

Offline Peardian

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #40 on: October 22, 2010, 11:15:15 AM »
It's a nice idea, but it's more distracting than anything. Especially the one in Chaotic Realm, which is both blurry and pixelated at the same time. The blue is also rather vibrant, compared to the also-blue borders and GBA-palette map, which makes it bit difficult to focus on. I say choose a more subtle background, and have it darker and less contrasty so that it doesn't steal attention from the level itself. The purple in the Boss Rush is a good color. You can try using a simple tiling pattern instead of stretching a single image if you don't want to fill most of the space with solid color. I hope that makes sense.
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Offline alucard

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #41 on: October 22, 2010, 11:30:29 AM »
Looks good so far. I suggest using black as a background color, the map will stand out more.

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #42 on: October 22, 2010, 03:54:18 PM »
*Warning, self-psychoanalysis ahead*

Chaotic Realm, hopefully better with less saturation:


Castlevania, same deal:


I'm actually disappointed that no one seems to like the concept itself instead of simply the execution. I've always wanted to make better looking maps or at least more interesting ones but I've long accepted that I have very little artistic talent (trust me on this, it's just how my mind works).

Anyone here knows or remembers Mephea? She used to post here and submitted maps a few years back and she always included tons of stuff like sprites, strategies, quotes and stuff. I never really liked how most of that stuff wasn't perfectly aligned or resized or seemed placed randomly, but I always envied how she seemed to have a ton of fun doing them! Me, I often anguish about every little detail of the final presentation and I sadly still want validation that what I'm doing is good or right.

I mean, I was really happy to change my maps and try to make them look a little better (it's not artistic, but probably the closest I'll ever get) and I'm asking for honest comments and the moment I get it and it's not what I wanted to hear, I feel deflated and also stupid for it. Oh self-esteem issues, will you ever fully go away?

...

OK, you know what? I really want to do this, and by that I mean use images of the castle in the background. Boss Rush can do with a simple purple background but for the other two, I'm sticking to my guns. That doesn't mean I don't want criticism anymore, but I'd prefer some that would help me make the idea look as good as it can. The pixelated look is intentional by the way.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 03:56:45 PM by TerraEsperZ »
Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished

Offline alucard

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #43 on: October 22, 2010, 11:22:11 PM »
I think that the SOTN Maps that were recently posted on here were the best I have ever seen because they used black for the background. It made the map stand out more. I am able to find the areas of the castle on the maps I am looking for quickly. I remember someone else from Japan made his own SOTN maps years ago and used white for the BG color, and I had wished he used black.

On the map you have here: http://img534.imageshack.us/img534/2775/ariaofsorrow.jpg

the background looks good, but when you make the map bigger and its pixelated you cant tell what it is. Also the colors are distracting when you enlarge the map. I do like how you have the Map Key, its cool to add stuff like that.

I think this map of yours is great

https://www.vgmaps.com/Atlas/GBA/Castlevania-AriaOfSorrow-Castlevania.png

because you used black for the background. Its Castlevania, it has got to be black all the way. That's how Dracula would have wanted it.

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow (GBA)
« Reply #44 on: October 23, 2010, 01:16:47 AM »
But black is *boring*! All of my maps look the same because of it. Well, if nobody likes it then I guess I'll simply update the main castle map with the corrections I wanted to make and keep it at that. I'll still post the versions with background on the forum on the off chance that someone likes them and use that if I ever get it printed and laminated.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2010, 12:37:53 PM by TerraEsperZ »
Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished