Leventhan's VX Mapping Tidbits

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The first part of the RMVXTUTS mapping tutorial series will teach some mapping techniques that mainly
involves height in maps, properly creating cliffs, using waterfalls, and other effective ways to increase depth
and generally improve the quality of your maps.

—–

Part One : Cliff Creation

Cliffs, the common problem that mapping novices usually face in the process of mapping outdoor maps,
for instance mountains. The trick on doing it is to first always remember to avoid boxy shapes which is often
 the result of mapping in RPG Maker VX. The second thing to remember is that nature is random, there is no
such thing as symmetry in natural terrains such as mountains and forests.

An easy shortcut to avoid boxy shapes are to subtract the original boxy cliffs with other boxes, shown in the
example below which is a considerably simple example.


You will be able and used with creating cliffs with time and practice, so don’t forget that knowing isn’t doing
and go do some practices on your own. It’s best to start with small maps first then move on to a bigger map
 as we tend to pay more attention to quality in small maps. Practice it one step at a time, don’t rush it.


The examples above shows what to do and what not to do, be sure to follow the good examples and avoid
the bad ones ! Well, this should cover the basics of cliff creation.

—–

Part Two : Usage of Height/Levels in Maps

Flat maps are boring. A map with a good feel of height and changing terrains however, is not. Those kind of
adventurous maps are exciting to play in. So why haven’t we made such maps? Meet the forgotten tiles :


I have seen quite a number of VX maps, and I have to say that few mappers (there are some that do, mind you)
actually use the stair tiles for both interior and exterior maps. Yet you can clearly see on the above picture that
the RTP comes in with outdoor stairs. We will use them in this part of the tutorial to see how much of a difference
they can make.

Alright, compare the two maps below :



The atmospheric forest map on the right clearly has more depth and an adventurous feel to it, rather than the
 boring, simple and flat forest map on the left. The stair tiles do make a difference, and they make a big difference
 in the overall mapping quality. It’s one of those little things that count.

—–

Part Three : Waterfall Creation

Well, here we are at the last part of the RMVXTUTS Mapping Techniques Tutorial #1 which covers the creation
 of waterfalls - my personal favorite. Waterfalls are a map element that can really bring out the best in your map
 if it is done correctly. Not only does it increase the depth of a map, such tiles are actually animated in game
and will bring more movement in the map - making it seem more alive and natural.

The tiles we are using:

Now let’s see what to do and what not to do :

Remember, nature is random and there is no symettry in the cliff placements. Try dividing the waterfalls like
 the rightmost example to optimize the effect of the waterfall on the map. Creating multiple waterfalls in a
map is recommended although it is not always necesarry and too much may also decrease the map quality.

The tiles that you need to pay attention to:

You can also add the below “sparkle” events on the waterfalls to make it more complex and it makes
the waterfalls considerably “prettier”.

Finally, here’s what I’ve made quite some time ago for Project Leviathan, pay attention especially to the
waterfalls and the rocks at the bottom. Notice that I also used the sparkle events to generally improve the
quality of the waterfalls.



End of Tutorial
« Last Edit: December 16, 2008, 03:01:50 PM by Leventhan »
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This really is an excellent tutorial. I am moving it to the DB now.

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Look at your trees in the top left corner.
Might want to fix that since this is a mapping tutorial.

pokeball :)OfflineMale
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more - now.

 :)
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Shadow Knight
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Look at your trees in the top left corner.
Might want to fix that since this is a mapping tutorial.
Oh my didn't see that. ;-;
-->Fixed (lol photoshop)

more - now.

 :)
I would make more but I don't exactly know which parts of mapping to make a tut on.  :P
Any suggestions? 
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I could really use some help on making interiors... VX seems so much more different than XP. So a tut on that would help me out a lot. Thanks
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Shadow Knight
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I could really use some help on making interiors... VX seems so much more different than XP. So a tut on that would help me out a lot. Thanks
It's not exactly a full tut but more of an image guide, but eh.
http://leventhan.wordpress.com/2008/11/03/room-creation-process/
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Thanks a lot man.
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You're welcome.
Glad I can help. ^^
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The cliff you use on that forest map confuses me a little. The cliff used(Top on my image) looks like it leads to a hole, but it's the only cliff that blends in with all the grass types. Also, the stairs on this cliff looks more like a bridge than stairs. The other cliff (Bottom) blends in with the other grass types and looks as if it has no depth at all, but seems like the one I should be using. If you use the cliff I used on the bottom where it's diagonally adjacent(If that makes sense.), then it just looks flat. I don't know if I'm over thinking it, or if the mapping on VX just messes with your mind. Which one makes more sense to use for you?