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010: Arboreal Ascent - WhiteYoshiEgg


Owner: WhiteYoshiEgg

World: 2
Exits: 1
Theme: Forest
Music Options: 1, 2, 3, 4, or compose your own.

Briefing: This is the last normal level in world 2, directly before the castle. Consider adding a couple of ruins towards the end (or perhaps even throughout), allowing for a smooth transition.
Alrighty then.

While I won't be able to do anything here until next Friday (lots to do if you will), I'm glad I managed to get a level, and I'm definitely eager to work on it.

As far as ideas go, I plan on retaining the general concept TOS had in mind - that is to say, an autumnal palette for the outside part and a large portion of the level taking place inside a tree. After all, it would be a shame to just throw away the treehouse interior GFX I made, now wouldn't it?
As for gimmick ideas... I don't actually have any. Like I said in the reservation thread, it'll probably be an "average" level - somewhat inconspicuous while hopefully still fun. ...or something. We'll see.

So yeah, that's basically what should be expected of me. As mentioned, I won't be getting around to starting this until next Friday, but I'm almost positive I'll finish it before the next deadline. I'll also be sure to plan it a bit more thoroughly before I start it and stuff.

I'm free for the weekend, so I'll likely get around to doing the basics of my level today or tomorrow. (And as I said, after next Friday time will no longer be an issue, so yay.)

For the sake of showing something, here's the autumnal palette I whipped up:

It's nothing spectacular yet - in fact, it's just the GFX sample level (1FA) with a slightly different palette applied. Of course the background will need to be changed as well, but I'm kind of hesitant to reuse Lucas' one considering the amount of level that already have it. I'll probably need to request another or make one myself.

For now I'd be happy with feedback regarding the palette, as well as suggestions regarding the level name (my vocabulary's not nearly wide enough to come up with anything myself). Also, if you've got any idea what to do with the background, then by all means tell me.

Yea, I'd suggest whipping up a new BG if you can. I remember TOS tried out Lucas' BG and I never really felt like it fit the whole autumnal aesthetic. Regarding what could be used, I don't know. Maybe something slightly relative to SMW's forest BG, ie a great canopy of leaves?
I could always try and make a BG, that's got an autumn feel. If you want I'll give it a go. As Lucas' BG didn't fit with the autumn feel like Milk said.

And that's a nice palette there too.
Thanks! Well, to be honest I'd like to try drawing a background myself first - if I don't succeed though (which I'm not sure I will), I'll be asking for one in the request thread and you'll be free to try your hand at it.

Any naming suggestions by the way?

The autumn palette looks lovely! I'm sure you can make use of the "cluster sprite" or whatever it's called to make falling leaves as well.

As for name ideas, how about...

Autumn Alleyway
Fall Footpath
Harvest Highway
Mario's Vanilla Journey

Progress: 22/72 levels complete
That looks pretty autumnal.
I could whip up a couple names for you. Just a sec....

Seasonal Stepway
Autumnal Ambers


(previously superdragonyoshi1. sup yall.)
Thanks for the comments so far, and especially for the name suggestions - however, to be frank I'm not too keen on any of those. They're all good, just... not what I was looking for I guess. Keep in mind a big portion of the level will take place inside a treehouse; maybe something could be made out of that?

Anyway, I assume this thread is the right place to publish beta IPS's? If so, here's what I have so far:


The beginning takes place outside as you can see, with the last treehouse being enterable (though not yet obviously).

Personally, I fear this part of the level might be a bit lengthy considering it'll just be an introduction. I'm also unsure if the difficulty's appropriate (the SMWC coin in particular, which might be a little easy to find)...

...well, that's what I'd love to hear feedback on. Overall, however, I'm quite fond of how it turned out.

The atmosphere is nice so far, though it DOES seem a little on the easy side overall (and yeah, I'd cut down the length a tad). You did say that the majority of the level will take place inside a treehouse, so I'm more looking forward to that. I'd also suggest switching up the track inside the treehouse to avoid sharing the same track as agie's level (this one might work, or the one Kipernal put up recently).

That's all I've got for now.
Thanks for the feedback.

I'll see what I can do about the length (oh boy, I'll have a hard time deciding which parts to cut out) and the difficulty (any idea how to achieve that? I feel just increasing the amount of sprites would clutter up the level, and adding any more types of sprites would seem forced...)

For the treehouse part, I was thinking of a more action-based level involving obstacles such as baseball-throwing Chucks, Grinders (or line-guided saws?) and perhaps some moving castle blocks. Sound okay so far? (I guess I'll replay those tree levels from DKC3 again for even more inspiration.)

And yeah, the music will definitely change in that part (leaning towards using Kipernal's song there). I've also tried using one of the two in the outside part, but that just... didn't feel right.

Not sure when a new version will be up, since as mentioned, I'll be home rather late for the next five days. I'll try to get one ready as soon as possible, though. (By the way, to those playing the current version: ignore the glitched bubble explosion GFX and the fact that the 1up block above the last treehouse doesn't act quite right. I'm aware of that, and will be fixing it.)

I like your idea of a giant treehouse. :) Pretty original. Hmm, maybe you could actually try to use soem ideas from the DKC 3 levels. Maybe the giant saw that is trying to chase you in vertical climb (kind of fitting for an industrial theme). The other stage from DKC 3 was about these birds that you had to dodge while climbing.
Thanks, although it actually was TOS's idea as far as I know.

Anyway, despite still being somewhat low on time I managed to whip up a little something today.


Yeah, it's still just the outside part, but almost fully redone this time. It's now half its previous length while hopefully still serving as a good introduction, and might even be a little more difficult than before. You'll also notice I moved the SMWC coin and its surroudings quite drastically. (Does the Pitchin' Chuck pose a serious enough threat? I'm not sure really...)

It's late...let's see if I'll still be as fond of the level tomorrow. Also, for the time being, ignore the glitched Chuck GFX and that teeny-weeny cutoff corner.

I believe the chuck poses quite a good threat, as I took damage from it enough times before I could get the coin unharmed. This area gives a nice autumnal aura plus it has no glaring issues such as being bland or not enough enemies. So far it looks on par with world 2, can't wait to play the rest.
I wonder what a HFD opcode would do in ASM...
Thanks for the comment. Any more feedback is greatly appreciated (though I see there's not exactly a lot to comment on).

In other news, pffffff.
I'm placing very high demands on myself here, and the tree interior tileset I made didn't turn out to be that practicable at all... I tried working on the "main" level today, and anything I made with that tileset, I simply despised.
I suppose the only way to satisfy myself would be to draw an entirely new tileset... I was thinking of something like this, maybe (inspired by DKC3 obviously). I'm not familiar with SMWCP2's policies on semi-3D graphics, so... would something like that even be allowed?

Either way, I guess the next few days I'll be doing some graphical work. I really hope everything will turn out the way I planned. >_>

I shunned pseudo-3D graphics and anything overly "realistic" due to style clashes, but if you think you can pull it off in a way that fits with the rest of the hack (cartoon-y), then you can give it a try if you want.
Yeah I think a half-3D or pseudo-3D visual style would be okay. After all a nicelooking self-drawn tileset always helps out. :) It should be cartoony however, e.g. a cortoony pseudo-3D tileset. :D
I would also suggest to fill your Tree Trunks with certain decorations like lanterns to lighten the tree house or some barrels.
So I guess I'm not going the pseudo-3D way after all.

The platforms are still WIP, but they're already doing their job, and looking quite good even though (or because?) they're 2D.

And in case you can't tell, I really am redoing the whole thing. All that's really "done" so far is the tree barks, but I quite like them already - way better than the barely recognizable one-tile-wide barks from the previous set.

I also plan to redo the background to make it wider (or tileable) somehow in order to allow for horizontal scrolling. I'm sure it'll turn out to be a much better level if I'm not restricted to one screen in width anymore.

Will you include a certain gimmick to the climb? What do you have in mind as far as level design goes?
Looks nice so far, I don't have any level names at the moment, but if I come up with something I'll let you know ;)