AuthorTopic: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest  (Read 112578 times)

Offline Phoenix849

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #100 on: March 26, 2016, 04:37:53 pm
Thanks, Gil.

Okay, here's my second take. Afterwards I might take this palette and use it for castle hallway as well. Plenty of colors left unused yet. I'm happy with it so far. Can't decide on version with space in between trees or without. Obviously, WIP.



Haven't felt this inspired for a long time. Would be cool to make a whole series of those.

UPDATE: Had an idea to reuse castle tiles for fish dungeon. Still have to merge all tilesets in one and decide on 4th tile palette. Not sure if I can fit in 120 tiles in total. Might need to cut something out afterwards. WIP, of course:



« Last Edit: March 26, 2016, 09:21:33 pm by Phoenix849 »
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Offline Mnots

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #101 on: March 27, 2016, 03:40:48 am
"I'm interested in this" - me

This topic seems really awesome. I'm gonna try and do a screen or two myself. :D

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #102 on: March 27, 2016, 06:44:02 am
Phoenix849: Awesome stuff man! I like that you stayed conservative with your tiles but still vastly improved the look. The palette change in the first area especially gives off such a stronger mood. I bet you have a good many tiles left, perhaps try to think a bit outside of the box now!

Mnots: heheh, go for it!  :crazy:

Offline Kasumi

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #103 on: March 27, 2016, 07:58:29 am
Castlevania's hardware setup would not allow you to switch tiles per scanline, that's more of a CHR ROM thing. (Because people can be pedantic, it can be done with CHR RAM, but not with the amount that Castlevania had.)

Using two separate palette to display a tile doesn't need extra tiles on NES, unless the tile would need to be "remapped". Like if you had a palette of black, brown, white. And a palette of green, dark green, light green.

If you wanted to display a tile using the green palette such that dark green was used where black was, you'd need two tiles. But if the second palette were dark green, green, light green (the same colors in a different order), you would not need a second tile to do that.

The forest and castle areas of the first level actually do use the same set of 128 tiles and palette. (Palette would be easy to change, though, they just just didn't.) I'm not saying don't use another set of tiles just because they didn't. Go for it. It's just information.

The HUD does not count towards your tiles. All reserved tiles are in one half,  so the 128 you get are the other half.

The HUD does affect your palette choices, though. In Castlevania, the HUD always uses the same palette in every level (At least, so far. I'm beating it again to check, and I'll update this post if it changes. Edit: Doesn't change during gameplay).

For your mockups, you can have a different palette for the HUD so long as it remains readable. Battletoads changes its HUD colors per level to get the most out of its palettes. Castlevania doesn't, but it could.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2016, 08:25:36 am by Kasumi »
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Offline wolfenoctis

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #104 on: March 27, 2016, 03:59:37 pm
Quick and dirty edit of Ryumaru's excellent piece, have no idea whether it would work:

Basically made the tiles in the foreground big to create a sense of depth and obviously changed the colors, based on the palette in Ruymaru's original post.

If I understand the color restriction correctly you have one color that can be used anywhere and four 3 color ramps where you can only utilize one ramp and the omni color in a given 16x16 area?

Offline Kasumi

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #105 on: March 27, 2016, 06:01:35 pm
You are understanding correctly, wolfenoctis.

Here is a post that explains this in more detail since most of the images in my restrictions post are still dead. (And... I think they'll stay that way for a bit, sorry. I am trying to finish something else.) I see that you've already found the linked post, wolfenoctis, but I've been asked on slack to clarify more generally.

Specific to Castlevania, the HUD uses the universal color which is always black. This means that without editing the HUD tiles themselves, changing the universal color to something not black will change everything that is black on the HUD to that as well.

What this post really boils down to is, "Do not forget about the HUD when choosing your color palettes." I do not mind anyone changing the colors of the HUD for their levels as Battletoads does, or even remapping its tiles to allow for something other than black as the universal color. You could even do away with the lighter color if you want (For the bars next to ENEMY), which would get the HUD down to 3 colors, not 4. Just don't make a mockup like it won't be there at all, it's a large part of the game that the original developers had to work around and with. Also remember that there are things in the levels that currently use the same palette as the HUD.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2016, 06:05:42 pm by Kasumi »
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Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #106 on: March 27, 2016, 11:35:06 pm
Quick and dirty edit of Ryumaru's excellent piece, have no idea whether it would work:

Basically made the tiles in the foreground big to create a sense of depth and obviously changed the colors, based on the palette in Ruymaru's original post.

If I understand the color restriction correctly you have one color that can be used anywhere and four 3 color ramps where you can only utilize one ramp and the omni color in a given 16x16 area?


Man that's great wolf, It's amazing what a palette change and some simplification can do. The rimlight on the left side of the walls is a great touch, as NES apparently cant flip/ rotate tiles anyway, so there's no reason not to have them be unique if it will help sell an idea like that. When you do stuff like this you realize that the 16x16 same palette area is a more limiting restriction than the number of tiles themselves.

Also, I've updated the first post with the NTSC palette, and corrected the number of tiles available (128). Keep it coming, folks!

Offline Kasumi

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #107 on: March 28, 2016, 08:01:42 am
Hey folks. It may surprise you all to know that I didn't have a program that checks restriction breaks. I've been checking manually, but enough people have been asking me stuff that I made a program. I may try to release if I can make it a little more user friendly. (But that... may... prove difficult. There are also probably times it can say you're not in restrictions when you are, just due to ambiguity of how palettes can be put together.)

One test image was Phoenix849's (Sorry man!)

Blacks are areas that are using too many colors. (The only useful output right now is that, but it does keep track of all palettes and other useful information, so if I clean up its output it could in theory help one detect more than 4 palettes and where they are.)

Anyway, it caught some stuff I didn't see. The gray beneath the stairs is different than the two grays of the banisters, so those three colors plus orange plus black is five colors in a 16x16 pixel area. The green vines underneath the bridge are similarly too close to the "orange" palette. (Apologies if I just have it offset wrong)

Wolf's edit of Ryu's start checks out. Anyway I'm not going to really check everyone's unless people actually want me to. I don't wanna ruin the fun of this.
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Offline Phoenix849

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #108 on: March 28, 2016, 09:51:42 am
One test image was Phoenix849's (Sorry man!)
I actually didn't check it for 16px regions yet, so I presumed it contained mistakes. It's still unfinished, so I'll be manually looking through when I merge these 3 mockups into one. Right now it's in 3 different Pyxel Edit files, where you can't switch grid from 8px to 16px without resizing tiles themselves.

Considering my shallow knowledge about NES, could you also link or talk about palettes? Why choose Bisqwit's over Nintendulator's?

Also, finally played Castlevania myself first time ever. Keep falling to death on medusa heads on 2nd level :D
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Offline Prism

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Re: Commercial Critique Challenge - Tilevania: pixel's quest

Reply #109 on: March 28, 2016, 09:54:31 am
Here's my take.

TILE COUNT - ~70


Experimenting with NES limits is a real joy. I haven't tried anything NES for...years, really. So seeing what tricks I could use was refreshing. (seeing how negative space could be used as an advantage, technically and visually, turned to be useful)


Since Kasumi is the fucking bomb, he was kind enough to run my piece through his NES checker, and gave me pointers along the way to keep this thing within limits.
Having a little less than half of the tile space left over is also nice. The foliage could still use more cleanliness, variation, and form, so it may be worth revisiting to see how those extra tiles could be put to use.