4 users online: Dispace, ECS.98, JankPickle, NixKillsMyths - Guests: 154 - Bots: 110
Users: 64,253 (2,441 active)
Latest user: skullfucksludgegirl

11E: Gliding Garrison - SyStemkraSh


Owner: SyStemkraSh

World: 7
Exits: 1
Theme: Blimp
Music Options: 1, or compose your own.
Additional ExGFX Recommendation(s): ExGFX 108 (Indoor Blimp Foreground) [FG3], ExGFX 109 (Indoor Blimp Background) [BG1]

Briefing: This is a blimp level, and you are welcome to make it either indoors (think Wing Fortress, Flying Battery, Gravity Beetle from MMX3, etc.) You can also make it an exterior level if you wish.
I may be interested in this one, if not taken already.

....It isn't taken already, right..?
Originally posted by SyStemkraSh
I may be interested in this one, if not taken already.

....It isn't taken already, right..?

I don't know how SNN is reassigning levels, but currently, AFAIK, it is not taken.
Whew, realized that the updates were WEEKLY and not DAILY.

I took down several notes about what I need to know and such before I slept. When I woke up, I worked on the level for a little bit. This will be the first room, where Mario starts. It's only two screens, but this is only the beginning:


From what I saw of the examples, airships/blimps are very cluttered, so I designed accordingly. Also, I had no idea how ExAnimation works, so I "learned" from Riolu180's (Thanks!) level to get the fans working. It can't be seen in the picture, though. Lastly, that gray block sandwiched between the other blocks is just a recolor of an "unbreakable" turn block from the original SMW.

Any suggestions so far?

EDIT: Also, would the "Zeppelin" level from TimeSplitters: Future Perfect be a good example too?
EDIT: Forgot to mention that the music used is the recommended one.
That really doesn't look bad! But you could add some enemies (A Advanced goomba's maybe?). Also, Notice those fans? There are some 1 pixel blue tiles at each corner.
Your layout has been removed.
I don't know what the TimeSplitter's Zeppelin level is like, but when I think of blimp stages, I think of Ninja Gaiden's third chapter (which also conveniently is on a blimp called the Zeppelin!).

In that game, things like opening hatches, high-altitude rope climbs, and triggering various security/lockdown features were necessary to proceed. You could probably make good use of ideas like that, because they seem pretty blimp-y to me!

As for what you have now, it looks pretty plain, but it's just supposed to be an intro area, yeah? I'll reserve my thoughts until there's more to think about!
Now that's an interesting usage of that tileset - I really didn't expect that at all. What I'm really curious to know is how you're going to make this level play differently than Riolu's - that is, I'd like to hear your plans for it. Since I've never played TimeSplitters (heard it was a good game though), I don't really have much to compare it to.
@ Bloop: Noted; the fans have been fixed, and enemies have been added.
@ Vic Rattlehead: I tried to look for NG3's blimp level, but I couldn't find it. I don't know if you're talking about the one for the NES, or the current gen systems.
@ S.N.N.: ..This might be the problem. I design levels with ideas in mind, and not with planning. The only idea I have in mind so far is to have multiple levels (maybe 4) with methods that can let you ascend and descend, maybe with doors similar to Hotel Mario.

EDIT: Maybe the level is based on sneaking past enemies? I have the level design in mind, but I don't possess the ASM skills.

BTW, This is the Zeppelin level from TimeSplitters: FP (which is the best FPS ever). It has several floors, actually has holes in the bottom floor, has wind fans that blow you a level higher, the structure of the blimp can be seen, and you can even go on the roof* and stand on its propeller/fans* or even stand on the tip of the Blimp's tail*.

*Probably not seen in the video
Yeah, oops, kinda meant the modern edition of NG.

The example from TimeSplitters looks like pretty much what I had in mind - that is, transitions from specific areas of the blimp (furnished sort of guest room area, more machinery-heavy areas, etc).

I can't really find any good videos of NG where the player isn't lollygagging around sniffin' out every single corner of every single guest room for items, but yeah, I think having to mess with whatever security systems may be on board could be kinda cool! That, and a fairly open-bottom platforming segment on the outer areas of the blimp. It seems like you have a pretty solid idea of how you want the level to feel already, so I look forward to how it plays out!
@ Vic Rattlehead: I do have an idea, but the difficulty might be an issue, so I decided to tweak the idea.


The next part of the level is similar to a maze. In the beginning, you get a message saying that this blimp needs repairs and maintenance. You ascend and descend levels by climbing ladders. Several large holes occupy the floors in the blimp and sharp, decorative spikes cover the wall, although usually in ones. Strategically-placed enemies are attempting to deal with the holes in the floor while ridding the intruder.

...I think that's all I've got to say right now. Also, layer 2 is being a dick to me.
24 hour post.
<blm> zsnes users are the flatearthers of emulation
Thanks :P

SMWC Coins: 1 of 3
Sublevels complete: 1 of 5
Midpoint: 0 of 1
Goal Point: 0 of 1
Days Left: ? of ?


I'm still working on the second sublevel. The level now has a sort of athletic feel to it, with numerous pits and places requiring excellent footwork, climbing abilities, patience, and timing to continue. One SMWC coin lurks under part of the blimp's broken skeleton, daring anyone brave enough to grab it.

Will try to take more photos after I sleep. This word wall isn't visual enough.

EDIT: I'm probably just going to make a counter with every update post I make, which will most likely occur daily because of how excited I am on how this level is turning out.

EDIT 2: Photobucket
Those blocks with an X on them are custom sprites. One of them is a Horizontal Thwomp, while the other one is a Blue Paratroopa.
Good, 24 hour limit is over :D Now I can post this monster.

...Also, might be interested in calling this level "THE HULLHOLE/The Hullhole".
SMWC Coins: 2 of 3
Sublevels complete: 2 of 5
Midpoint: 0 of 1
Goal Point: 0 of 1
Days Left: 40 (AUG 6) of 43 (SEP 17)

For those of you who are wondering why I'm updating this so much, it's because I'm trying to avoid procrastinating like what I did with my level in the first SMWCP. Also, I'm trying to complete as much as I can before I have to focus on school.

Also, things I'm trying to avoid:
- Very cramped areas (N=2 or N<2 tile wide/high spaces; pits don't count)
- Luck-based things (Magikoopa, Bullet generator, etc.)
- Slowdown; the difficulty might be made easier as I distribute fewer enemies around the level, though.
- Spammy enemy placement
- Linearity; I think it's cooler to explore the whole blimp, almost like a tour.

Room 1 - BEFORE
Room 1 - AFTER
The "X" is actually an "Advanced Goomba," which only jumps when you normal jump and is immune to spin-jumps.

The palette of the bricks/metal sheets in the background have been changed. Feedback from #smwc on IRC told me to make the floor and background easier to tell apart.

Room 2 - BEFORE
Room 2 - AFTER
Photobucket shrank the images, so the level looks more cramped than it actually is.

The door in the middle on top of the P-switch question blocks leads to the second SMWC coin room. It is accessed by hitting the "P" block above and to the left of the door, which triggers a passage of question blocks to appear.

The two doors with secondary entrances lead to the same room through different entries. The room that they lead to will be at the end of the second SMWC coin room.
The first SMWC coin is in the bottom right. It requires timing and precision to get.

As said in a previous post, the "X" sprite above and to the left of the first SMWC coin is a "Horizontal Thwomp". It is partially hidden behind the pipe, and slides left when Mario approaches that way.

Also, ZSNES images:
Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket
Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

Any questions or feedback?
Hold on, allow me to pick up my jaw from the floor.

Seriously though. Those graphics...they are freaking incredible!
I don't really know what more to say. It almost hurts the eyes to watch it through the Lunar magic overview with all those details but dang, those in-game screenshots.

There's one thing that came up on my mind though.

With all these fancy details everywhere, the FG looks, to me, a little bland with its one-palette-grayness. Perhaps a light tone variation with darker / brigher stripes or something on them?

Just a thought.

Very well done! Kudos!
I disagree wholeheartedly. I think there is just WAY too much going on in those screens that it becomes ugly. I don't think the way he used them is incredible at all, other than the overlapping pipes. (THAT SHOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE!) The first room is ok, but the second, there's just too much stuff everywhere. The blocks you're using for the background were actually meant to be used for the detail in the foreground, so perhaps you could use those instead of all the pipes and especially the giant blocks.

EDIT: Also, to be honest, the second section kinda looks like you just threw everything together haphazardly... You have spikes placed in random places, there doesn't seem to be much reason for why anything is really placed where it is...
<Adam> I feel like smwc is a prostitute now, because we put up a porn ad for money
Originally posted by Riolu180

What should?

I like it for the most part, it does get a bit busy at some points, but I guess I'll have to play it myself to judge properly if it's enough going on to distract the player.

And as matt said, you could use those "bricks" from the background for the foreground as well, together with those blocks.

I really can't judge the level design right now though, the screenies are way too busy to see anything, so I'd rather play it myself before commenting.
Your layout has been removed.
I'm somewhere in the middle of the road, regarding the current pictures! I think it appears too busy, but removing some of the pipe end blocks should alleviate that feeling. I don't know if the pipes have layer priority, but it sort of looks like they might, which could be interesting. I think you mostly need to cut down on a lot of the in-ground decorations. A little neatness goes a long way in making a level look a lot better!

One thing about how the level looks like it plays out that bothers me though, is how the spikes are set up. More than once, you use two opposing spikes on a one-tile wide ladder. While this isn't too to much of a problem, you could probably use more clever enemy placement instead of them. The one glaring issue I can see is how there's a one-tile high opening under a spike on the run to the SMWC coin door. This offers a big disadvantage to Big Mario, but no threat to Small Mario, so maybe remove it, yeah? Ya already have to race the clock there; you shouldn't have to probably lose your powerup too.

Yep, I think ya should definitely clear out a number of the 32x32 pipe end/screw blocks!
Alright, lots of feedback!

@ Senjan: I'd do that, but I'm very limited on the ExGFX space I have left.

@ Riolu180: Alright, I've cut down on the usage of the giant blocks quite a bit. I was kind of going for that cluttered look, but I guess I made it TOO cluttered. The "blocks in the background" you were talking about, I'm assuming those are the bricks? The thing is, the outline they have looks like it would be passable, and not solid, so I placed them in the background.

Also, nothing's impossible in Lunar Magic when you have Layer 2, ExGFX space, the 8x8 editor, and lots of time :P

@ leod: Throughout the times I playtested, it never really looked cluttered, but as people started to point them out, I started to notice more and more. I'd post an IPS, but I want to be at least a good amount through my level. I'll post some pictures of the clutter-reduced areas in another update.

@ Vic Rattlehead: Are the pipe end blocks the huge, 32x32 blocks? I removed some of those. The pipes DO have layer priority, making it a bit trickier to see the enemies. The decorations have been reduced. As for the spikes, it's supposed to make up for the decrease in enemies, so that slowdown and sprite memory wouldn't be too much of a problem. However, I removed the ceiling spike from the start of the first SMWC coin run.

Thank you to everyone for the feedback. I'm taking care of the problems as I type this up.
Originally posted by SyStemkraSh

@ Riolu180: Alright, I've cut down on the usage of the giant blocks quite a bit. I was kind of going for that cluttered look, but I guess I made it TOO cluttered. The "blocks in the background" you were talking about, I'm assuming those are the bricks? The thing is, the outline they have looks like it would be passable, and not solid, so I placed them in the background.

Well, I designed them with the idea that you wouldn't even be in the ground, so why should they be passable at all? :P (...honestly, they're only solid because of Magikoopa issues I was having...and then I ended up scrapping the Magikoopa from my level...) As for the background, there IS a background already set up. ;P ...but since you've basically said you're doing Layer 2 Shenanigans, I guess using the blocks (they're not bricks! :P) is fine. I do suggest you add more variety to it, though! There's a small block and a tall block, you don't have to use just long blocks!

Also, I'd like to suggest you make your level a lot less cramped. I think you could give yourself a lot more freedom that way, although it could indeed make avoiding enemies a lot easier. However, this is where the spikes come in! ;) Remember, don't just throw the spikes around willy-nilly to "replace" enemies- they should work together. Besides, doing that looks kinda bad, to be honest.
<Adam> I feel like smwc is a prostitute now, because we put up a porn ad for money
I think it depends on personal taste Riolu. I like the cramped together screens and the high amount of detail in the foreground. Plus this way the blimp level feels different from the other two (the level with the Roviclaw and the one with the airvents). I personally think that the foreground in the Roviclaw stage lacks some details like these lamps or some ventilators since it is just a brown ground.

I suggest, that you, Systemkrash should design the stage as you want visual wise and the guys out there either like your style or they don't.