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sixteenbithero

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About sixteenbithero

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    |artist|designer|production|
  1. What languages do you guys find that are the easiest to work with when learning how to code for video games? I'll read the books or take the classes or watch the videos to learn it, but it's a little overwhelming how many coding languages exist out there, so I'm just looking for a language to begin with. Truth is, I've got a small amount of experience with C++ and almost nothing else (HTML doesn't really count.) I also know there are a fair number of computer languages out there that has the processing capability to create games for all sorts of media (whether its for retro systems, arcades, PC, mobile, whatever.) I would be most interested in coding for retro systems, but I'm open to suggestions. [edit] i asked a silly question, just delete this post.  thanks.
  2. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it almost sounds to me like you want to vary the level of difficulty with the tutorial, which sounds like an oxymoron. That's like saying people who go through pilot school have different levels of difficulty in the same curriculum based on whether or not they're a good student beforehand, not piloting skills.   My suggestion would be to leave the tutorial alone, and keep it simple.  Make it mandatory if you must, but remember, you want the player to understand the basic game mechanics, not use the tutorial as a difficulty-based task they have to clear just to play the game.  Granted, once the tutorial is learned, some may grasp the idea faster than others, and some may not realize what difficulty the game is set at on startup, and therefore want to change it.  But, that's okay!  If you teach the basics and then find ways to hint at advanced techniques later on, you can encourage players of all skill types to play and invest into your game, and eventually get better.   Good luck!
  3. sixteenbithero

    Interacting With 3Rd-Party Bands/musicians For Your Game

      I can imagine going through licensing groups would cost a small fortune (up-front AND royalties), especially for a game that is made on a more independent level.  Perhaps that level of thinking would require much more investment and could be unreasonable to start.  Thanks for pointing that out. But, when I think about the music industry as a whole, there's a lot of unrecognized talent out there that would love the exposure (and isn't represented by ASCAP or BMI.)  This is the kind of talent I'd rather reach out to, and since most musicians at an unrecognized level are typically broke, I feel like compensation helps the artist as well, creating a good relationship between parties.  While some bands may say "oh don't worry about paying us" and play the gracious card, most unrecognized touring bands still need the gas money to make it to the next show.  Whether the compensation is done via lump-sum or based on revenues may or may not be relevant, I don't know for sure.   And the 'collaborations with musicians' line did sound a bit vague, I apologize for that, but I was referring to 'established recording artists' or say, reaching out to a metal band (signed or unsigned) to help generate a metal/rock-sounding OST with you.  
  4. So, I'm really just looking for feedback/experiences from those of you who have worked with other musicians in creating your music for your games. 1) Regarding commissioning artists/musicians, I love the idea of having music from existing projects getting featured in the game (like what Tony Hawk: Pro Skater did for the pop-punk community.)  Have any of you experienced any legal problems or found positive ways to interact with other artists in terms of using their music?  I also believe in giving a small chunk of change to the bands/artists involved, so what have you considered "fair" in terms of paying them?   2) If not using their music directly, have you collaborated with other musicians in making your game's original compositions?  How did that go?
  5. sixteenbithero

    "metroidvania"-Style Games, Linear Vs. Non-Linear Design

      That I did not know.  But does this mean they're similar because they can both glitch the same way, or does this mean they're similar because there are ways to circumvent key items in the game?  From a speedrunner's perspective, sure, that sounds awfully similar, but I'd love to hear more about ways to avoid key items in SotN to gain access to other parts of the game without completely glitching the game out. Please, do tell me more!
  6. sixteenbithero

    "metroidvania"-Style Games, Linear Vs. Non-Linear Design

      Couldn't agree more about the whole "FEEL" concept with both games.  Background music, besitary, and environment have a lot to do with it, along with a sense of character development to give a human element to it.  Everything does need to work together or you end up with an experience that makes no sense.  And yeah, SotN and Super Metroid have very different feels, but still have a lot of similar gameplay elements.  So, it's like they're the same game, but totally different. I suppose the argument here is what you would want in terms of replay value, and there's a number of different avenues you can take when designing a game.  I personally loved finding out about the "mock ball" technique, wall jumping, and other somewhat hidden gameplay-permissable shortcuts, and that's what has kept drawing me into playing a game like Super Metroid over and over again, attempting a faster time to clear every time (often times with fewer missiles and energy tanks.)  It still backs up the same notion that you can progress with less stuff, adding to the challenge of the gameplay.  I did conveniently forget about the Richter gameplay storyline, and that extra character does add more replay value to SotN.  I don't remember if the upgrades are the same or not, but I do remember the battling element of gameplay being different.  However, SotN also has the RPG elements in it, which encourages the player to find the "best weapons" and level up to great lengths, which can add investment time from the player.  So, I suppose SotN has replay value just like Super Metroid does, just in a different fashion.  My only problem with SotN like i've mentioned before is that some of these "key items" and bosses are things/obstacles you cannot ignore or circumvent around to progress, whereas Super Metroid does that have that capability.  You can skip the Crocomire and the Spore Spawn minibosses, and there's a bunch of other key items you straight-up don't need in order to complete the game (most notably, the grappling hook.) From a design point of view, I like the idea of being able to traverse through an open-world map any which way you can.  Mandatory bosses and/or checkpoints help develop a story around it, so the real struggle would be to allow the player to travel freely through the open-world, while at the same time, managing the steps the player takes and create multiple storyline arcs around it.  SotN does this somewhat by encouraging the player to achieve different endings and final bosses based on actions taken in the game, but Super Metroid does not (because there isn't a focus on story after Ceres blows up.)   One thing I worry about, in this day and age, is a player looking at a complete overworld map on the internet, going "OH OKAY THAT'S WHERE EVERYTHING IS" and achieving all the secrets and hidden stuff easily.  So, maybe another thing worth considering in design is a small puzzle aspect to finding secrets as opposed to just breaking all the right walls and finding the meats in them.  SotN does this as well with a few of its mysterious obstacles (like the room where you can sit down and the ghost will show up? that took me forever as a player to figure out, but it ended up being kinda necessary to access other parts of the game.)
  7. sixteenbithero

    4-Layers, A Narrative Design Approach

  8. Hi everyone,   I'm relatively new to the website and what you guys have to offer, so bare with me. I'm in the process of designing a giant map for one of my games, akin to Super Metroid and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, but also realize that the games, though very similar in gameplay, offer a slightly different experience. I find Symphony of the Night to be a very enjoyable game, but due to the linear nature of the experience (you need upgrade X to reach section Y on the map, then upgrade Z to reach the next section, so on and so forth), it has the fault of offering little replay value once all of the secrets have been discovered and the story has been heard.  The linear nature of the story encourages the player to follow a specific path in the open world, and there's not much derivation from it.  While this sounds bad, it makes developing a deeper storyline much, much easier, since every player will have to experience specific checkpoints in their path, creating perfect moments to add some dialogue.  Metroid: Fusion does a lot of this as well.   However, I find Super Metroid to offer a lot in the replayability department, thanks to hidden special techniques (and lol glitches) that were clearly implemented by its developers.  This allows the player to experience the world in many different ways, offers multiple solutions to obstacles as opposed to very specific ones, and gives players reason to go through the experience again with a new wealth of gameplay information.  The only real drawbacks from this is 1) development, because you don't want the player to end up "trapped" anywhere thanks to a special technique, and 2) developing a storyline based on how a player got to a location instead of just getting there makes things a bit more complicated.   Thoughts?  Do you prefer a linear, story-driven design in Metroidvania-style games, or does the idea of a non-linear approach sound more exciting?
  9. sixteenbithero

    The Art of Enemy Design in Zelda: A Link to the Past

    solid article, thank you!  this way of imagining how to use enemies as more complex obstacles than simply "kill and move on" makes for more interesting and challenging in-game experiences for players.  and yeah, maybe i love LttP probably more than the next person, but the fundamental understanding is clearly present in this classic. i love me some Super Metroid as well, but it's got me thinking about the enemies in that game that are also utilized for different functions and typical gameplay strategy.
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