Town and Interior Mapping Tutorial (2k3)

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Ok, I'd first like to start off by saying that good RTP maps are very hard to come by. An extreme lack of resources (hills, building tiles, etc.) makes even the best mappers cringe in fear. But, it's what comes with the game, and so it must be dealt with. First up, I'll start with a cozy little forest town.

DISCLAIMER: I'm not going to call myself the best mapper since sliced bread (Because I'm most likely not), but I, like NPC, noticed that there is an incredible lack of Rpgmaker 2k3 map tuts on this site (And the pictures on Agent's tuts are gone). This guide will hopefully help people to add some pizazz to their blank maps. Without further ado, here goes.

Mapping a Town

Spoiler for Cozy little forest town:

Ok, that's one I whipped up in about 15 minutes. Let's take it slow with another one, though. Start with your plain landscape: Lots of grass, and maybe some sort of body of water.
Spoiler for Land:

Next, you'll want to add in some lovely buildings. I'm pretty sure I'm using some sort of bridge/gate tile for my houses, but hey, they look nicer than the odd pink brick/log cabin tiles they give you. Make them as big or small as you like, I personally need my buildings at least slightly bigger than a 3x3 hut with a mini-roof slapped on, just what kind of giant do you think you are?
Spoiler for Buildings:

After you get that done, it's time for a road connecting all your houses. Try to make it as not straight as possible, it adds to what little realism effect there is.
Spoiler for All right! Now it looks like something!:

Now, for the Coupe de Grace, get yourself some trees, bushes, and the like. This is what gives your map its volume and hopefully makes it look not quite so empty.
Spoiler for Finished Product:

Mapping a House Interior

The indoors tileset is incredibly lacking compared to XP and VX, but we'll do what we can. I'm running into a frightening number of

Spoiler for Ugh...:

maps, and that's just not good. That map right there's an empty piece of cow manure. Luckily for you, that's how these maps are supposed to start off! Get yourself a ceiling tile (I used the plain black one for mine, but anything you find suitable will work)

Spoiler for Pink! Argh!:

You'll see why we start with that later. Next, slap on your ground tile. It can be any shape you want it to be as long as it matches the building outside (Don't make a tiny house on the outside 50x50 on the inside).
Spoiler for Ground:

Sweet, nice and empty. Oh, and there aren't any walls yet. Those are incredibly important in making houses, unless you're making a game where all of your houses are floating platforms. Don't do that. Aside from adding some walls on the back, you'll want to make yourself a couple rooms, as such:
Spoiler for Rooms:

Now this thing's starting to take shape. It's time to finish it with some furnishings, just make sure you're aware that some hypothetical family lives in these houses. They wouldn't put a bedroom in their kitchen, would they?
Spoiler for Furnishings:

You'll want to kill some of that empty space you see in mine, but that's just for demonstration. So yeah, there's a cute little house. Enjoy.

General Mapping Tips

I'm sure you can find these elsewhere, but it shouldn't hurt to have here.

Avoid empty space - Some of the poorest maps come from putting a whole lot of nothing in a massive room. In towns, populate your area with trees, shrubbery, signs, people, anything to avoid emptiness.

Keep it random - Another problem among beginning mappers. Never build your city with symmetrical houses, put straight roads in the wilderness, or cut out a perfect square of trees for a 100 year old shrine. Sure, it takes more work, but the best maps weren't created in 5 minutes.

When it comes to plotting out forests, concentrate trees in a couple areas - It adds some realism not having bushes exactly 3 tiles apart from one another. Set aside one or two areas to have more trees than everywhere else, it'll save your eyes from the monotony.

For a more organized list, check this guide out: http://rmrk.net/index.php/topic,13769.0.html, it's not made in 2k3, but the concepts hold the same.

pokeball NPCOfflineMale
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Thanks, this is (part of) exactly what I was looking for.

I would of course want more but 2 is better then 0
Why do 1 lined nameless NPCs never get taken seriously?

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Yeah, I'm a little pressed for time right now, but maybe I'll churn out a tut every couple days (World map, shop, dungeon, ship, etc.). Anything the RTP will let you do, I guess.

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Keyblade maker
This really was a good help. nice
"This is not death. This is sacrifice." Grahm Aker.
SOG Gundam

your signature is stupid

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Be careful about necroposting old topics like this, but I'll take it as a friendly bump. Thanks ;D

EDIT: Oh, and just as a shameless plug, I'd really like to see a 2k/2k3 Tutorial subsection... I feel like I'm one of a select few who still sticks with 2k3, but unlike VX and XP, it's really different from it's brethren; and I find it hard to find a good 2k discussion mixed in with all these VXP threads everywhere.

I mean, I wouldn't be hurt if things stayed as they are now, but I kind of miss that ol' 2k/3 tutorial board.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2010, 07:07:36 AM by Sirius »