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Lucif3r

Need some design inspiration for my game

Question

Well, heres an odd question...

As some may know(mainly the people on IRC), Im currently making my own game(mostly for shits and giggles and "education"). Its been going fairly well, however Im completely out of ideas as to how to design a town.

 

So, Im looking for ideas and inspiration for this town.

The setting in the game is classic "jrpg" fantasy, with anime-like graphic, and is of course in full blown 3D. The town will be decently sized, serving as the first major town you encounter. The houses and buildings will not be enterable, except for a few specific ones. So the houses/buildings are mostly for "decoration" so to speak. 

 

The area on which the town will be built is between the small stone wall and the mountains, as illustrated. The beach isnt quite as big as the image says, as I have disabled the water.

fw7oxv.jpg

 

The landscape/ground can be adjusted to better suit a town. As far as scale goes, its hard to see on this particular image, but below the red dot, theres a tiny character. So, the available area for this town is quite big :) 

 

For reference, heres a couple of other images to somewhat show the style Im going for:

This is your "home", the buildings are of asian type, with a classic dojo. (the floating well is obviously just a placeholder lol)

2whpdh4.jpg

 

And heres one of a forest area.

2d7bhjc.jpg

 

And finally heres the flower-field right next to the area where the town will be built. You can also somewhat see the scale here.

9kma9i.jpg

 

Im thinking the kind of visual style of the buildings would be similar to this; c6856222bd74805094f9b4b32760cfeb.jpg

 

But yeah, layout, design of the buildings, type of buildings, decorations, type of ground(grass? dirt? pavement? stones? mix?)... I have no idea..... Ive also thought about a harbor, since the town will be right next to the ocean... But again, I have no idea how I would make that layout.

I want the town to be uniformed, so no random deviations from the overall design, there shouldnt be anything that obviously looks out of place(for example, a sci-fi-styled building in the middle of the otherwise "old-school" style, or a stone building among wooden buildings etc). But of course, I dont want each and every building looking the same either, cause thats just cheap! :P  

 

Any ideas are welcome(except "give up" hehe), since as I said Im completely blank out of ideas...

 

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Every game needs Penis Monsters...

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Of course, the enemies arent a problem at this particular moment though :) I still need to figure out the AI system, my attempt yesterday only resulted in the model doing somersaults at 300mph and flying all over the map lol... 

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How many buildings do you think you would be able to fit in the area? you could space them out with perhaps stone walkways in the more "main" part of the town, and gravel to the more "outskirt" part of the town. since you're next to the mountains and beach you could also go for a nice stream coming down from the mountains, or you could even have a waterfall which you can walk up to, and have it flow through the middle of the city or something like that.

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I see we are much of similar minds here :)  What youre saying is more or less what I decided to do.

 

This is how far Ive gotten for those interested:

1238nme.jpg

 

 

the placement isnt 100% yet, and the landscape isnt completely shaped. The buildings in the distance is actually placed in a circle, and was thinking of adding a "roundabout" in the middle, with some foliage etc. Im thinking of adding a few more windmills too(and yes, they spin, dont worry :P) spread out on the empty areas. Not a massive amount though, maybe 2-3 at most.

I also need to add props ofc.

 

Also, the screenshot is taken directly from the editor, so it doesnt look very pretty compared to in-game :P 

 

 

As for a river, its not a bad idea, but, I already have one incl. waterfall in the first area - which is just a stonethrow away. Adding another stream so close to the first doesnt feel right or natural.

v80ygh.jpg

 

The waterfall isnt visible on this image, but its just out of frame to the right, at the mountain. The texture of the river isnt final either. 

 

Anyway, thanks for your suggestions :) Appreciate it. Any other suggestions are welcome too of course :) 

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what about a cornfield or two under the windmills 

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That.... Is actually a very good idea, I'll definitely look into that!

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I dunno if anyone gives a shit but, heres 2 new images displaying the progress so far. I havent had that much time to work on it today, but I think its starting to turn out fairly nice.

 

1j9d3o.jpg

 

I decided to make the "roundabout"(more like egg-shaped lol) a park, with a small lake/pool/puddle/whateveryoucallit in the middle. Im going to add a few fishies in there as well. Grass will be added, a few flowers, maybe a few more trees and a few benches(yes, I plan on making them interactable so you can sit on them)

 

And heres an overview of the town so far:

zv90m1.jpg

 

 

These 2 images are taken "in game", with most of the filters and effects active. I think its starting to look quite nice tbh. Not fully happy with the outlining though, as they get unnaturally big as you get further away from them(as seen on the stone formation in the distance). And no - the GUI is obviously not final lol, its literally a placeholder :D 

 

And no, Zapp, I havent forgotten about the fields :) I just dont have any suitable grass and ground material to make them yet.

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It kind of reminds me of Skyward sword from the windmill that kind of morphs to wind waker with the ocean and palm trees. with the houses the way they look, dirt or a brick road would look the most putting. Are there going to be a lot of random people walking around? 

 

 

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One more update for today, the park is more or less complete now. Just a few props missing

 

xkx250.jpg

 

There is a total of 10942 grass objects in the park btw... Maybe a bit overkill, but I wanted to see the performance impact... After baking the total fps drop was 2, from 57 to 55....

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Here I made some concept monster :

Spoiler

QgUq4BH.jpg

 

Edited by StarMelter
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@Lucif3r haha yeah man it's starting to come together, the bridge kinda finishes it. i guess the towns a good size too. 

 

dw man you have plenty of time for the fields XD could also put animals like sheep and shit

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Need to vent my frustration, facepalms and "happiness"...

So, I am working with 3DS Max for my 3D models, while most others seem to use Blender, and I've had this issue with morph targets/blendshapes* not exporting and importing properly to Unity.

All guides/questions/answers Ive found has been blender-related, with a mix of Maya, which doesnt help me at all. The closest I could find was "yeah, it works fine in 3ds max as well".... yeah.... Anyway, after lots of digging and searching, I came across a script that supported morph targets in unity on skinned meshes. Yay, problem solved, although I would prefer the native function... But whatever...

 

Now, yesterday, by sheer coincidence, the morph targets exported perfectly fine to Unity... I was like "WTF?! HOW!? WHY!?"... Scratching my head with lots of ??? floating above my head I searched for what I had done differently...

The reason? I had placed the morph modifier above the skin modifier............. So, I quickly moved all morph-modifiers above the skin modifier, exported and imported in Unity... Yep, works... *facedesk*

Now see, heres the thing... Placing any modifier ABOVE the skin modifier causes 3DS Max to cry rivers when exporting, bitching about how modifiers above the skin isnt supported and wont be exported etc etc... THIS WAS OBVIOUSLY A LIE! So, all my headache regarding morphs was all thanks to 3DS Max giving me the wrong information and a misplacement in the modifier hierarchy............ Sigh.......

The good news is, of course, that I can now import the morph targets properly in Unity and use Unity's native functions without relying on wonky external scripts :) 

 

 

 

* for those that dont know what morphs/blendshapes(same thing, different names) are, its a method of transforming, "morph", one object(base) into an other(target) in a blend-like fashion. This is the preferred method when doing facial animations, as you have a lot more control. For example, you have your eye-object, the base object is wide open eyes. Then you make the same object again, but this time with the eyes closed. Adding a morph to that then allows you to move the eyelids seamlessly from 0% to 100%. The same method is applied to the mouth, one object with mouth closed, another with wide open mouth, then you can control how much the mouth is open very naturally.

The only requirement is that the base and target object have the same amount of polygons.

The other method, without using morphs, is by adding a fuckload of bones to the face, and control the facial features through bones... That, is a pain in the ass both to set up and to control.

 

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.... And heres a couple of examples of what morph/blendshaping is all about

2hdzhph.jpg

... And anything between... Sky's the limit lol

 

This is the kind of thing you can spend years on and still not be happy with it lol....

Well, at least I got everything working that I want to work on the characters... Cloth physic, hair physic, boob physic, and morphs....... Guess I have to give the stupid AI another shot now then...... ugh.......

 

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Just a progress update.

Things have been moving forward quite a lot, but not much to show(although looking at the few screenshots Ive posted, I guess there actually is a lot to show lol).

I've spent most of the time changing the visuals a trillion times, optimizing the world as much as possible(so far Ive increased the performance by roughly 300%, its still not good enough though), and writing the combat and AI system. Also started with a title screen, but ran into a few limitations for what I wanted to do, so that'll have to wait for now.

Most of the AI works okayish, still bugs out every now and then for reasons so far unknown. Combat in general works fine. I got staggering, blocking, dodging and hit detection working fine. The basis for stats(armor, atk power, level, xp gain etc) is also implemented and working. Leveling up is not yet implemented, I need to figure out a decent formula for that first.

I also need to make a shit ton of animations and attacks, something I absolutely suck at >_> And ofc I need to make NPC's and enemies... So far the MC have 8 or 9 different attacks, 2nd companion have 6, and the 3rd none... Also only have a total of 2 different enemies done :P

And finally I've started making the 3rd companion character, but Ive had to remake it 3 times so far because my fking PC keeps fking me over >_<.

 

Other than that most of my time have been spent screaming at my pile of garbage PC, and watching anime for... research... yeah, yeah research... totally not just to waste time, nope, not at all......

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1 hour ago, Lucif3r said:

Just a progress update.

Things have been moving forward quite a lot, but not much to show(although looking at the few screenshots Ive posted, I guess there actually is a lot to show lol).

I've spent most of the time changing the visuals a trillion times, optimizing the world as much as possible(so far Ive increased the performance by roughly 300%, its still not good enough though), and writing the combat and AI system. Also started with a title screen, but ran into a few limitations for what I wanted to do, so that'll have to wait for now.

Most of the AI works okayish, still bugs out every now and then for reasons so far unknown. Combat in general works fine. I got staggering, blocking, dodging and hit detection working fine. The basis for stats(armor, atk power, level, xp gain etc) is also implemented and working. Leveling up is not yet implemented, I need to figure out a decent formula for that first.

I also need to make a shit ton of animations and attacks, something I absolutely suck at >_> And ofc I need to make NPC's and enemies... So far the MC have 8 or 9 different attacks, 2nd companion have 6, and the 3rd none... Also only have a total of 2 different enemies done :P

And finally I've started making the 3rd companion character, but Ive had to remake it 3 times so far because my fking PC keeps fking me over >_<.

 

Other than that most of my time have been spent screaming at my pile of garbage PC, and watching anime for... research... yeah, yeah research... totally not just to waste time, nope, not at all......

 

so like, is this game gonna be a bit like runescape? just asking XD or is it gonna be first person or what? just curious

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Third-person, action jrpg'ish, no turnbased combat, click to move, birds view or any of that crap. In a way similar to games like witcher and dark souls, just more "j"rpg than western rpg.

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Great work, @Lucif3r.


Towns should be treated as a pivotal characters within your story that have their own moods, feelings and personalities. The inhabitants should be extensions of that. Avoid creating towns for the sake of having them. Give them purpose, give them meaning. Remember, people are choosing to live here because of X/Y/Z reason. Also, avoid generic design choices such as "this town has a strip club, people come here to see naked women, no other town has one so that automatically gives this town importance" that's just unrealistic and lazy. But it's okay to have them built near natural landmarks because it's understandable why humans would want to live near nature's natural beauty. When giving a town something special, however, take the social status/standing of it's inhabitants into consideration. Would a poor town have one of the fanciest restaurants? Or would they have a cheap casino to gamble their pennies at instead? It's 1AM, I could probably offer more advice if you want, too tired to keep brainstorming now though. Good luck.

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A few more up-to-date screens of the town and nearby area.

wm0z6u.jpg

 

2zfpm42.jpg

 

p3y8z.jpg

 

1zo8bi8.jpg

 

Kindly ignore the god-awful fps, screens are taken from the editor which by definition runs slow as fuck, as well as my PC being completely crap. In an actual build the framerate is 2-3 times higher(which is still terrible, I know, Im working on it! jeez, get off my back!).

Edit: Scratch that, just made a build and I had almost a solid 57-59fps throughout the world, with a few dips to 40 at the really heavy areas. :) 

 

 

The lighting has become a bit fucked during some of the unity upgrades, and I'm currently remaking it AGAIN, but ofc ran into issues that needs addressing first.

There are also a few more areas added(hint: one area is right behind the character in the last screenshot) that I have not yet disclosed, but most work, as previously stated, has been made on the scripting/system side, mainly the AI and combat. I've also made 'zones' to control such things as BGM, time of day, NPC/enemy spawning etc etc.

Overall Im getting closer to the visuals I want, but not quite there yet.

Edited by Lucif3r
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the graphics are starting to look really detailed, i like the water man. congrats it's looking good

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Added a couple of more flowers to the flower field :)

2q0lo45.jpg

(I actually added a few more after the SS was taken)

 

I'm Soon™ ready to start adding some gameplay over, starting with the combat system.

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Aaaaand the main project has become corrupted so I can no longer open it, courtesy of my fucking PC..... fml...

 

Well, I do have a backup thats not THAT old, but its at least a weeks worth of work lost... Good thing I've spread out the work over several projects though, so the "only" things affected by this is the scene/terrain/etc... All core scripts are still intact. Still a pain in the ass though, as I'd finally started to get the hang of optimizing shit and making it run better... Now I have to remember and redo all of that >_>

 

update; I've managed to salvage most of the work, so no need to panic anymore.

Edited by Lucif3r

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To mix things up a bit, I've started planning about enemy-types and their corresponding area...

 

But, as usual, I lack any kind of imagination so... What kind of enemy/NPC/Creature would be suitable for the flower field posted above? Its a beginner's area, so it doesnt have to be any super-fancy stuff...

I was thinking cows, passive creatures that will either try to run away, or attack you, upon being attacked. And if you just leave them alone, they will mind their own business(eating grass or whatever the fuck it is cows do lol). Maybe a couple of aggressive boars to spice it up? Although not sure if boars is suitable for a flower-field, alongside cows.... lol

 

Suggestions? :P 

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On 12/5/2016 at 3:54 AM, Lucif3r said:

To mix things up a bit, I've started planning about enemy-types and their corresponding area...

 

But, as usual, I lack any kind of imagination so... What kind of enemy/NPC/Creature would be suitable for the flower field posted above? Its a beginner's area, so it doesnt have to be any super-fancy stuff...

I was thinking cows, passive creatures that will either try to run away, or attack you, upon being attacked. And if you just leave them alone, they will mind their own business(eating grass or whatever the fuck it is cows do lol). Maybe a couple of aggressive boars to spice it up? Although not sure if boars is suitable for a flower-field, alongside cows.... lol

 

Suggestions? :P 

 

dude don't ever forget the rule "your data doesn't exist unless its backed up to 3 different places" haha always important to make backups. try keep one on HDD, one on USB and another on internet or another HDD on pc

 

btw maybe horses for the flower field or goats/sheep. maybe if you put goat make more aggressive with horns or something :o maybe even a giant lady bug or something hahaha just for lolz

 

 

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Yeah the problem is the project is almost 70GB big(with approx. 1.5mil files), I dont have any usb drives that big :P And I dont have any other HDD that have that much free space :P But ye, I do have 3 copies of it at least. Im not /too/ worried about it getting corrupted though, as pretty much everything important can be salvaged without too much pain. Its mainly specific settings and tuneups that gets lost in the void.

 

Hm, big ladybug isnt a bad idea actually. A stubborn grumpy goat isnt that bad either, but I feel goats belong more in mountains(well, mountain goats :P

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