Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

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kelly1111
Posts: 257
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:28 pm

Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by kelly1111 » Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:05 pm

I know I have asked the question before. But somehow I want to be sure of the answer before I start building my mega-dungeon.

I am trying to create a very complex dungeon structure, the idea is that alot of my dungeon will be accesible from the start for the party, and is all very interconnected. So a non-lineair approach, kind of like dungeon master choas strikes back. I want to create the effect of something vast and big... by ways of early acces to area's you can venture into (but perhaps are not yet strong enough to survive) ... it's a big maze of tunnels, hubs, changing corridors, spawn area's that you are pushed through, which change over time... earthquakes that limit parts of the dungeon, and open up others... and other tricks I have up my sleeve..


The only problem I have when making the layout and levels is that I tend to get lost in it myself. So for organising and knowing what connects with what... I have made a new layout. This design helps me to better see what I am doing by deviding parts of my dungeon between alot of levels. (the earlier version had alot of stuff on the same editor level, but tended to clutter.. and I really had to backtrack on which part connected to which part, which part should not be accesible yet...etc.... so in short: I am trying to organise things now by this layout, so I can design the complex dungeon in an easier manner, editor wise.....
xxx The levels themself consist of a grid size of 50 x50
xxx I am not using every space of the 50 x 50 grid of each level
xxx there will be 58 levels with a 50 x 50 grid



The image is to get an idea ... the connections in the dungeon will be complexer than the image
Image

questions:
-- Is what I am doing good practice? (see above example image for explanation of what I am doing)
-- will I bump into problems engine/memory wise ?
-- any other ideas or suggestions for designing this mega dungeon are welcome


.... some sort of complexity idea I am using for refference on level design
Image

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Isaac
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Isaac » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:47 pm

If you are determined to use 50x50, then you will probably need to re-implement the automap from scratch in a custom script; the map doesn't really work with larger than a 32x32 grid.

Personally I think it's more work than is worth it, when the maps can be made with the seamless/careful use of exits. The only caveat being that no rooms should be made to cross an edge boundary, or it will have a fade-transition when crossing the room; these could be altered to avoid that side effect.

Image
Last edited by Isaac on Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Pompidom
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Pompidom » Thu Jan 24, 2019 5:11 pm

The most important question you should ask yourself is this:

Will it be fun to play? The main fault of most projects out there is just a bunch of endless maps that brings nothing new to the table and default placements of just about everything.

58 levels of 50x50. The first thing that pops into my mind will be that it will have a serious high risk of becoming a tedious long and boring dungeon run with run of the mill level design. Basically the same criticism others have given me when I presented my BloodMoon/Town idea/project.
50x50x50 that's a massive 125.000 squares that gonna need to be filled up with interesting concepts/contraptions/puzzles and interesting combat siutations and enjoyable map/level design.
Imagine the amount of tedious wall shuffling that has to be done looking for secrets.

It doesn't matter if you create new wall assets and stuff. If you're going to use them in the same way everyone else has done before you, it's not gonna matter much. It's more about what you do with the stuff you already have at hand than actually creating new assets.

With my own project I focus on quality instead of quantity. Everything looks different than the other projects out there by placing stuff all over the place with WorldPositions, jamming stuff into ground/walls. A simple example: A house with a herb garden and water well with bucket on a chain. a shovel planted straight into the ground. At all times I keep the player entertained with new ideas, tricks and custom placed assets in interesting ways to make the game look like a real game instead of a grid shuffler.
Jamming trees 2 floors into the ground yields wonderful looking "custom" plants. These are just few examples.

Most of my maps are very small and fun/easy to explore with at least 8 rows and 8 lines dedicated to visual trickery. Leaving only 100 - 200 walkable squares left to explore.
If for example a map contains a big tower in the middle, you will be able to see this same tower on all adjacent maps in the distance making it seem like a big and complex world.

Your complexity map drawing: I see no reason why you wouldn't break it down over multiple smaller maps to keep your "ingame map" functional. Teleports are instant as well.

kelly1111
Posts: 257
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:28 pm

Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by kelly1111 » Thu Jan 24, 2019 11:25 pm

.... thanks for your answers guys. I have to rethink my strategie here. Perhaps ill design some exits/transfers between levels for my tilesets and make use of the 32x32 grid again. I never really cared for the automap function.

and concering the subject of fun to play.. i hear you pompidom. I am not aiming at more of the same, and not aiming at quantity over quality... even if I have a ton of selfmade assets I am going to use. And really am working on creating a different experiance and atmosphere .... it is not that I want to fill all the 50 x 50 grids...

I just need so much levels so it will be easier for me to desing my maze...
things get really confusing if you are not making levels lineair... all the forks, ups and downs... after I while I get lost myself..and I dont want to break things by accidently connecting things (rooms, levels, tunnels) the party should not be at yet
me using that much levels and a larger grid... helps me get a more clearer view and order in the editor when designing.

Anybody here know dungeon master conflux 3? ... that was a megadungeon... that never got boring... so much to do and find out. very good desing ! From the start of this little gem, you could go in many directions.. and really get lost in a good way !

Pompidom
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Pompidom » Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:15 pm

I found the solution to lack of creativity.
I found it very difficult to create many interesting good looking well designed maps.

Since my mod takes place over multiple dimensions, I figured I can simply copy/paste the few good maps that I do have and then convert them into a complete different look but keeping the same layout instantly doubling/tripling/quadrupling the amount of maps :)

I converted my town to a winter town in a different dimension with different npc's and monsters facing the same threats and issues as the original dimension. Exchange summer trees with barren winter trees. Snowcovered ground anyways with piled up snow against walls etc... Exchange a flowing waterfall with a river into a frozen river. Herb garden into a winter herb garden. The result looks stunning :)

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Isaac
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Isaac » Sat Jan 26, 2019 11:06 pm

In the ORRR2 Grimrock (1) mod, Xanthar's room features a pair of multi-lens goggles that (when worn) perceive many differences in the map, depending upon what lens, or lenses are installed.

(It's the same map, but it updates when the goggles are on; and the lenses determine what changes.)

kelly1111
Posts: 257
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by kelly1111 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:49 pm

Yes !
That's a great idea. I will try that out pompidom
And for the lenses. I will have a look at the source files. I still have to play ORRR2 ... (shame I did not do it yet)

Pompidom
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Pompidom » Thu Jan 31, 2019 3:12 am

While working on my mod, I came to the conclusion that it's not about limits, sizes or anything like that.
The 4 GB patch simply takes care of everything giving you buttery smooth performance at the same time.

It's all about your patience putting up with the ever increasing loading times it takes for the mod to load every single time you hit the preview play button after you have made some changes. The bigger your mod gets, the longer this loading time stacks up.

I'm currently sitting at roughly 30 seconds of twiddling my thumbs every time I press the Play preview button with 50 regular maps (32x32)
overclocked intel quadcore with 16 GB RAM and log2 installed on an SSD sata3.
Considering that I sometimes change only 1 asset or placement at a time reloading my mod over and over again just to check if the changes of placements I made look better + correct, it can become rather tedious. Then again I make sure there are no irregularities or missing stuff and the world contains "no mistakes" For example leaves of a tree are not allowed to stick through a wall and stuff like that.
I try to keep it at a high visual quality standard without "architectural mistakes"

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Isaac
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Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Isaac » Thu Jan 31, 2019 4:03 am

The editor allows for the disabling of levels while editing—and they simply don't load.

You can click to enable or disable any of the levels, and the preview works fine, so long as it never calls a script that is absent for being on an unloaded level. Just click the orange dots on the level panel.

Image

What you should do is to position your indispensable script entities on to the same level (provided your scripts don't require known, or fixed object positions on the map, of course those you'll have to leave where they are). This way, you enable the level with the scripts that you need, and enable whichever other levels you want to edit, but you can leave the rest disabled, and they don't get loaded.

The game does allow travel to unloaded levels while previewing, but those levels are entirely blank.
You can CTRL-Click any level to enable only that level; disabling all others.

It's useful to CTRL-Click a level to disable all but the one, and then click on any others that you need.
____________________

It is unfortunate that the editor does not save the state of enabled/disabled levels in the project file. So you will have to repeat the process every time you reload. :(

Zo Kath Ra
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Location: Germany

Re: Another question about map size, limits and streamlining things

Post by Zo Kath Ra » Thu Jan 31, 2019 9:01 am

Pompidom wrote:
Thu Jan 31, 2019 3:12 am
The 4 GB patch simply takes care of everything
Careful, or minmay will quote the T&C at you!

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