Stuff (previously Something Stirs...)

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Nov 10, 2012 at 8:16 AM
gigantic immortal dog...?
"That dog!"
Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
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Thought I might post here about something I started working on.
TL;DR (updated) -
I've just begun work on a short, simple mod, with just map edits currently. It'll most likely be an adventure mod, in a metroidvania style. Currently not planning on sprite edits, custom orgs, and even story won't be part of the equation until I finish mapping, and get it playable.

"What's special about it?" The mapping style hopefully. I think I map a little differently than others. But, you'll have to wait on a screenshot... don't want to spoil the later area!
The character of the mod is pretty dark at this point.


As the mod begins to grow, it has become a much more complicated project. At the moment it looks to be a mostly linear adventure with cutscenes, and a focus on storytelling. There is a high content of TSC events expected, and lots of dialogue most likely.

"What's special about it?" I hope to produce a mod that will be a bit different than anything currently available (That I've played). More details as parts are completed.

At the moment I have little plans for new art, but when the game is functional, I'll look into it if the cards are right. Best to crank out a great story and experience, and add the sparkles when the time comes. We shall see~

Long version (old) -
I want to keep things simple and as untechnical as possible... So, I started randomly* mapping.
I've just finished constructing the components that could be used to create a hellish complex.

... but this'll probably be more of an adventure, than a hell mod. Focusing on atmosphere, most probably.
Haven't really considered enemy placement or type at this point, just creating a unique set of areas. Will work on that afterwards...

At the moment there is no dialogue or story "in the game", but after I create the maps, and make it playable, I might feel compelled to add in the rest. I'm not planning on using custom graphics, but I'm being 'creative' with the existing sprites.
I'd post screenshots, but that'd spoil things at this stage :p

Maybe the mod will start on the surface of the island, and then you gradually explore deeper, super metroid style, until ...
Well it's too soon to tell.

Anyway, figured I'd keep a record of the development of this little mod. Successful or not.
It'll probably also be released for CS+, with some mp3 replacements for it. And if I stick with it long enough maybe I'll make some custom orgs for the original version...

If I do make a real little story for this mod, not sure if I'll follow/limit myself to Cave Story; I might just use the same characters and have them be different people... (like having Quote be human) [Okay now I've got ideas popping into my head about editing sprites, but I must desist! Keep it simple, or I'll never get anything done...]

As for a name for the infant mod... Nope, too soon to figure that out.


What about your other stuff?
Eh, well Cloud Story has the STORY. A full game's worth... But, *eye twitch*.
At this point in time, I'm too unstable to follow through on the creation of all the assets needed for such a project. Even if I can picture what all the levels should look like, it's a real pain to execute. Lack of patience, and skill.
Also, I started building Cave Story from scratch on the last version of GameMaker before Studio. I thought about using NXengine, but eh... my programming skills are quite dastardly at the moment. I would rather know the engine from front to back. The main reason? Well, the game won't be the same without having custom AI. Robots and new frenzied Mimigas realllllly need a brand new design. A re-skinned monster just won't do the trick...
"Overall progress" on the GameMaker front is hardly, if any. I'd like to make it so you can stick in the old TSC code, but I'm still just figuring it out. Instead I decided to do something with immediate results for now.

NewGame+? Eh.... Well, I passed it off to someone else :p But, that fell through so... xP
With the Cave Story Redesign, and Cave Story Fourth Ending, and other similar mods; it seems less important.

I think that's all the stuff I have to talk about~
Thursday, Dec. 6th 2012 -
Got my head screwed on a little better. I've reviewed everything, and I think it's time to put together Day 1 of this still unnamed mod.

News :
Monday, Nov. 26th 2012 -
Just a heads up. I took Thanksgiving break off after all D: Cleared my mind a bit, and ready to start up again. Also spent a few days watching Vocaloid, Touhou, etc youtube videos D: Hopefully I've gained something from it xD (Check the Vocaloid]http://www.cavestory.org/forums/threads/3080/]Vocaloid topic for 24 minutes of stuff every 4 days or so)

Sunday, Nov. 18th 2012 -
Today was pretty much a bust. I've been trying hectically to pull the story together, so that the early part of the story and the routes come together and are worthwhile. While the main ending is done, and beginning is decently formed; and the OVERALL game is confusing me. I loveee the ending... now how do I get there... xD Guh, need to break this barrier or focus on something else.
I feel pretty good about this mod though. I believe it has potential. Just gotta keep working everyday...


Saturday, Nov. 17th 2012 -
Been focusing on figuring out the gameplay and establish just how large the story will be. I've actually got the TRUE ENDING possibly plotted out with scenes, music, and major areas already and some a bit of mapping. Now I'll work backwards to fill in the details... Also a thanks to Matt for a show of support, and getting me thinking...

Thursday, Nov. 15th 2012 -
Hardly any mapping completed today. Story has become pretty huge. It's managable though~ It just depends if I create multiple routes or not. I'd like to! I've got the beginning and the ending of the main route pretty much worked out now. Main details are done. The big chunk of the middle is still up in the air though. As for the other possible routes... They aren't fleshed out at all yet, though I've figured out some details to make multiple routes make sense~
Did a little in-game testing too, not bad... not bad!


Wednesday, Nov. 14th 2012 -
I missed a few days of work on the mod ;_; But, got back to work today. Made something quite interesting... Quite interesting indeed! Anyway, nearing the end of the exploratory phase of random mapping. Soon I should have finished going through all the map types, and next I'll put the pieces I created together to form the actual areas. Also, the story has really blown up to be quite big. Although, it actually could work out to be a nice balance currently... But, we'll see... Zzzzzzzz SO TIRED

Sunday, Nov. 11th 2012 -
More random mapping... With pretty good results! I also came up with the start of a possible story. Though, at this point; it could change at anytime. The mod also threatens to become larger than I had originally planned, but I'm going to hold the course, and just focus on random mapping and take it from there afterwards. Also, a hint. No news = not working on it. So... the larger the news gets, the more accomplished~

Saturday, Nov. 10th 2012 -
Two days ago, I started a little Cave Story mapping. Today I finished the major components to what will probably be the last level. Yeah, I started the last area first xD
Also, today I announced its existence. No name yet. The little stuff can wait till I have a playable mod.
 
Nov 10, 2012 at 2:04 PM
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"I, Ikachan. The Life and Documentary of the OrigiNAL SQuiD."
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Hmm... depending on what direction you end up following, "Something Stirs" could be a title for the mod. Especially if the mod has a dark tone to it and you end up delving into the deeps of the island or whatever. Just a thought. Meh. You seem to have a knack for storytelling, though, so I wouldn't be surprised if you come up with a pretty sweet plot line for it.

Anyway, this sounds pretty cool and I'm intrigued about your "creative" use of existing sprites. Also, I'm glad to have the update on your other work! I have been interested in Cloud Story since I joined here, but since there hasn't been any kind of update on it for a while it's good to know where things stand. It sounds like you still have some pretty good ideas—keep chipping away at it all at your own pace and it will be great!
 
Nov 10, 2012 at 6:53 PM
I don't anymore.
"I'm sorry Mario, but your princess is in another castle."
Join Date: Aug 9, 2010
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I always like ti when the title of a game like this hints at a plot element "Metroid" but doesn't tell you anymore than that and goes about it quitely.

Also thefact that this is happening makes me a happy Matt.
 
Nov 11, 2012 at 9:35 AM
gigantic immortal dog...?
"That dog!"
Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
Location: Forever wandering the tower...!
Posts: 1745
Hmm... depending on what direction you end up following, "Something Stirs" could be a title for the mod. Especially if the mod has a dark tone to it and you end up delving into the deeps of the island or whatever. Just a thought. Meh. You seem to have a knack for storytelling, though, so I wouldn't be surprised if you come up with a pretty sweet plot line for it.
Mmmmm, it's too soon to come up with a name... Earlier today I was actually thinking of using something like The Darkest Night, but it sounds too common lol. And, actually the game might have a lot more upbeat areas, before you get to the ... other parts lol.
I'm tempted to write about the story I thought of, but I'm going to hold onto it for now~
I need to just focus on more mapping~and the rest will come naturally.

Anyway, this sounds pretty cool and I'm intrigued about your "creative" use of existing sprites.
Just an example of the "creative" use in previous games I've played...

^In that picture, the spaceship, is all pieced together from shapes not meant to be rotated, stacked on each other, etc...

Or this Egyptian robot for instance, not supposed to look like that normally... but careful manipulation of the parts, and I came up with that.
As for Cave Story, I won't post the pics yet :p But, basically using sprites not where they were intended, or use combinations to create new objects, shapes etc... There might be times where it will show a little, but overall I am happy with the results!

Also, I'm glad to have the update on your other work! I have been interested in Cloud Story since I joined here, but since there hasn't been any kind of update on it for a while it's good to know where things stand. It sounds like you still have some pretty good ideas—keep chipping away at it all at your own pace and it will be great!
Thanks for not giving up on me xD As long as I'm not smart enough to give up on it, perhaps it will eventually see the light of day!

I always like ti when the title of a game like this hints at a plot element "Metroid" but doesn't tell you anymore than that and goes about it quitely.

Also thefact that this is happening makes me a happy Matt.
Is that sincerity? :D

Anyway, it's too early in development to guess exactly what the end product will be...
But, I'll be happy as long as there IS an end product to see xD

I'll keep updating the first post every day I make progress. That way if I relapse, maybe someone will give me a little reminder to keep working!

I will say though, it's nice to be able to mod randomly and freely without tying my imagination down to a set of rules [like attempting the prequel]. I can do anyyyything!


Lastly, should I keep the WIP story under wraps? Or should I write a typical teaser for what I came up with? It'll probably change with time so I might keep quiet, but if there is some demand then I'm open to sharing it too.
 
Nov 11, 2012 at 4:34 PM
I don't anymore.
"I'm sorry Mario, but your princess is in another castle."
Join Date: Aug 9, 2010
Location: Greener Pastures
Posts: 1190
Age: 26
It is! Here your gameplay will take priority over your story, but that doesn't mean you can't have one. Try writing out a basic description, like "You play as person in place doing thing!"

As long as you can consistently make memorable maps, then you'll be good, also maps don't need to look fancy to be memorable, stuff happening, or the player getting frustrated will have this effect.

Good luck! I hope to see this pull through.
 
Nov 12, 2012 at 2:44 AM
Okay I give up... for now
"What is a man!? A miserable pile of secrets! But enough talk, have at you!"
Join Date: Dec 31, 2011
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NewGame+? Eh.... Well, I passed it off to someone else :p But, that fell through so... xP
Question: That wouldn't by any chance be this, now would it? If so, then wow, small world. If not, then nevermind.

With the Cave Story Redesign, and Cave Story Fourth Ending, and other similar mods; it seems less important.
Heh, I remember seeing a blurb of that on your blog back before I knew how to mod and thinking, "Oh man, I'd better hurry up with my idea for a fourth ending before he finishes that and makes my idea less relevant!"
 
Nov 13, 2012 at 8:25 AM
gigantic immortal dog...?
"That dog!"
Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
Location: Forever wandering the tower...!
Posts: 1745
@Matt -
It is! Here your gameplay will take priority over your story, but that doesn't mean you can't have one. Try writing out a basic description, like "You play as person in place doing thing!"
It's too late! I've already imagined far into complexity xD

I guess you're right though... must be careful to not get too caught up with story and stop making tangible progress.

Question: That wouldn't by any chance be this, now would it? If so, then wow, small world. If not, then nevermind.
Nope, the dialogue is quite different, though it looks to have the same concept :D
It's already been a year since I heard that work had stopped on NewGame+, and my last release was during last summer.

I feel bad about abandoning the mod after re-reading the comments from the topic D:

Heh, I remember seeing a blurb of that on your blog back before I knew how to mod and thinking, "Oh man, I'd better hurry up with my idea for a fourth ending before he finishes that and makes my idea less relevant!"
I remember someone saying a similar thing back in 2007 when I first announced my intention to make a prequel mod (Was it Shmitz with Jenka's Nightmare?)...
I could should have had a mod finished 5 times over by now ;_;

That's why this new mod better not fail! It's mod or die time!
 
Nov 20, 2012 at 5:36 PM
I don't anymore.
"I'm sorry Mario, but your princess is in another castle."
Join Date: Aug 9, 2010
Location: Greener Pastures
Posts: 1190
Age: 26
Always a pleasure. Glad to motivate.
 
Nov 22, 2012 at 6:40 AM
gigantic immortal dog...?
"That dog!"
Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
Location: Forever wandering the tower...!
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;D

...So, I kinda got stuck the last couple of days. Since I started mapping the last levels first, and had a soundtrack to work with; I was able to easily figure out and create a perfect ending for one of the routes.

But, now I've become challenged by trying to draw up the story that leads up to that point! You need to successfully connect the player with the character(s), so that the ending will have felt earned; and be well enjoyed. [and fit the game]
Add to the fact, I am attempting to make multiple routes/endings and make them worthwhile. Suddenly I'm faced with a complex task of figuring out and dividing a story into different circumstances...

In worst case I could cram everything into one linear route.

I feel like I should be following the same process a writer uses when making a book. I should look up common practices... I imagine it's not START FROM THE ENDING.
 
Nov 22, 2012 at 7:29 AM
I don't anymore.
"I'm sorry Mario, but your princess is in another castle."
Join Date: Aug 9, 2010
Location: Greener Pastures
Posts: 1190
Age: 26
Hm... what'd be better is to add variation to a few endings than creating a bunch. If th eplayer has 9 choices per say, they can lead to 3 endings. But say they for some reason make a poor moral choice or don't do a crucial thing, they could still get ending A, but it changes the game somehow.

Kinda like FEZ. You can get all the cubes to beat the game, or half of them. The creator didn't have to designa whole nother section for that second ending, he just had to change the end based on how you player the rest of the game.

"Note: FEz is a collection based game, which mods don't usually do, so some factors would need a bit of work to translate"
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 1:17 AM
gigantic immortal dog...?
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Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
Location: Forever wandering the tower...!
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Here have some spoilers, since who knows if I'll ever finish stuff :

This little section I did today, it's more of a cutscene area than some kind of battle section.
I took a few cropped pics of random spoilerific things too if you want to be spoiled :
*subject to change, and some may not appear in the mod, just to keep you on your toes





These are all using the base CS+ 1x graphics. No graphic edits yet.
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 2:23 AM
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Wow, I think I see what you mean about your unique mapping style. I dig. Of course it would probably require play testing to know if everything works as well as it looks, but you have certainly renewed my interest.

I especially like the mech-looking one (second to last). I can only imagine how it might fit into a storyline.
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 4:55 AM
Alfa
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Woah. O_o

Them's some awesome maps you have there, X! I really like that first one :D
I can definitely see that your unique mapping skills will take your mod far. It provides some interesting atmosphere!
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 9:05 AM
gigantic immortal dog...?
"That dog!"
Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
Location: Forever wandering the tower...!
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<3! Thanks for the confidence! :D



My biggest issue has been creating any desire and patience to work on the mod... I get a feeling like a lead weight in my stomach when I think about working and shut my eyes... -_-; [thus rarely do I work on anything]



For now though, I have this >wallpaper<, which I look at when I lose heart.



"I pray for your victory..." And I renew my attack!



On that note, I just finished another map tonight...! (It's too much of a spoiler to show :p, I probably shouldn't post everything... right?!)



Ah well, I'll post a piece of it anyway :p I edited it to be *probably* less of a spoiler...



Pre-activation~
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 1:04 PM
Alfa
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Not much of a spoiler since I have no idea what it is. Great work!

And keep at it, X. I'd love to play a demo...

Someday...

:p
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 3:34 PM
Okay I give up... for now
"What is a man!? A miserable pile of secrets! But enough talk, have at you!"
Join Date: Dec 31, 2011
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So I think we all know that we aren't supposed to use NICALiS' 2x res graphics in any of our mods, but when it comes to 1x res pictures that are originally made by NICALiS, wouldn't the same principle still apply? I mean, the G-Clone stuff is made by NICALiS, just like all the 2x res graphics. Does the fact that they included a single resolution version of an original creation of theirs automatically make it public domain? Forgive me if NICALiS made some official statement permitting the use of any of their 1x res graphics and I wasn't aware.
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 5:17 PM
Okay I give up... for now
"What is a man!? A miserable pile of secrets! But enough talk, have at you!"
Join Date: Dec 31, 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 1827
Age: 23
This isn't about all the graphics included in the original Cave Story. This is about the G-Clone graphics. The G-Clone made its first appearance in Cave Story+, something that is property of NICALiS. If that was property of NICALiS, then it seems like it would be just as restricted as their double resolution graphics. I've heard that Pixel made Wind Fortress, so perhaps you are implying that you know what I'm addressing, and that you are saying Pixel made the single resolution picture of the G-Clone. Even supposing that was the case, he made Wind Fortress specifically to be included in Cave Story+, by which time NICALiS owned all the publishing rights to Cave Story, so it's debatable even then as to whether or not it's legal to use the 1x res G-Clone graphics. I most definitely would like for these 1x res sprite sheets and tilesets to be public domain, and for X-Calibar to be able to use them in his mod, but considering they were not part of the original Cave Story, and are exclusive to a NICALiS release of Cave Story for which redistribution of graphics made by them is illegal, it doesn't seem like it would be okay to do what X-Calibar is doing just because it's a 1x res version. If anyone presents solid evidence to suggest that it's okay to use NICALiS-exclusive 1x res graphics, then I will gladly rest my case.
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 7:00 PM
gigantic immortal dog...?
"That dog!"
Join Date: Apr 18, 2006
Location: Forever wandering the tower...!
Posts: 1745
Hey Hayden!
I haven't really looked into it, I just know that at this point in time, the mod will *probably* require Cave Story+ to function properly... As the full soundtrack I'm using is currently not all org. And as for graphics, I figure I will include easy instructions how to copy the neccessary graphics into their correct locations. Or just have you drag and drop the mod onto a copy of your CS+ folder.

"Help! I don't have CS+!"
WHYYYYYYYYY

Well, maybe we can figure something out... The game is only 3$ I think when on sale so...

Lastly, if and when the mod becomes really functional; like demo ready and beyond : Perhaps then I'll begin to add all new graphics replacing the existing ones. And maybe all the orgs will be completed as well, allowing for the mod to finally be an original Cave Story mod at last.

"I plan to upgrade the graphics and sound to v2.0. It would become an even more useful mod.
... As long as I live long enough..."

Of course, it wouldn't be hard to get the mod running on CS without the proper materials... it just will need a few placeholders... D:
 
Apr 3, 2013 at 7:24 PM
Okay I give up... for now
"What is a man!? A miserable pile of secrets! But enough talk, have at you!"
Join Date: Dec 31, 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 1827
Age: 23
Okay, I suppose that's reasonable then.
 
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