July 27, 2009

I hate being a noob

I have read on the Bioware forums this post by Eguintir Eligard, who was explaining ho the choice of having 6 party members (PC + 5 companions) necessarily affected area design:

"you have to design your areas accordingly or they will bunch up/be rendered useless at various pinch points. I avoid entrances that are a single tile wide in a building entrance, and you have to avoid combats right inside a door way as there is a good chance your ranged companions will go in first, and then be stuck because the rest rush in behind them, unable to reach with their weapons but still blocking the doorway. Two tile rule for any combats for the most part, or stick to outdoors."

Well, for the life of me I had not thought about it! And I had better do it, since LoL will feature 4 companions. Don't want them to mess up with one another with the caster ending up in front surrounded by foes and the tank stuck at the back of the group without any possibility to move!

Anyway, reading the above made me think and - after a toast to my noobishness - I went and remade the area I am currently working on, a few WIP pics of which are shown herein below. It is supposedly a ugly spot in the Nether Mountains where many baddies dwell. And the PC's got to clean it up! how innovative... please be impressed! Basically I had to make the paths larger because there was no way a party could walk them without jamming. Now it is still narrow but I am confident that at least they will be able to move, albeit cumbersomely.

Of course, if and when LoL is finished this post will be deleted and I will claim that my mountain areas where thoroughly thought out and cleverly designed in order to provide players with a realistic and immersive feeling of barren and inhospitable lands that could also force them to think strategically in order to implement the best tactics to take care of the above-mentioned baddies in their own environment!

p.s. ooops! What happened to the River Rauvin? Why is this major waterway looking so miserable? Strange, it is spring and its waters should be boosted by the melting... There must be something fishy! ;-)

July 18, 2009

How ugly is this?

Dappled shade... good (at least, I like it)...

Leaf canopy... sucks!

Because it's patently flat and bidimensional, and it doesn't merge at all with the columnar trees!

I have tried to camuflage a bit the 90 digrees merging point with the visual effects of the Ashenwood tree branches, but to no avail, since they are perfectly vertical so they only boost the "squared" effect"!!! :-(
Any advice would be much appreciated...

July 13, 2009

Crowded airways

The last recorded Flight of Dragons occurred in 1356 DR over the Dalelands and the Moonsea.

Once appeased, the dragons have gone back to attend their usual business, however the skies - and lands - of Luruar remain causeways of troubles, as evinced by the tentative map of the wyrms' overlapping dominions drawn up by Volo.

His pamphlet "A bloodthirsty adventurer's guide to dragons" is sold throughout the North, notwithstanding Elminster's attempts to talk Volo into aborting the project.

July 08, 2009

Time will be a turning wheel we shove or retard...

...time will be a toy...

...time we will enjoy...

so say Helloween.

However, I haven't enjoied it.
And I haven't been touching the toolset for a month, now. Which makes me think there's a long way to go. I barely remember the keyboard commands to rotate the view :-( !!!!

I will just post some screens of my only almost-but-not-quite completed area to remind myself that there is a whole little world of imagery demanding my attention!