The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.
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My original motivation to change it at all was the thing you mentioned: I found it a bit gloomy, almost hazy like there was smog in the air (probably more realistic to what a lava planet would be like) but less fun to look at while playing the game.
Also, I didn't like that any reflective surface appeared a greyish yellow.
The star clusters are still there, but don't appear until higher up, which I can change by lowering the transparency of the gradiant. I will bring back the reddish haze near the horizon too and see if that works better.
edit: ok, I've restored the stars and the red smog hanging over the horizon. The mountains in the distance look better this way.
It doesn't look bad, but I think colourwise it's too similar to the city background now.
One thing I liked about the volcano background was that its brownish theme offered a distinctive look not yet provided by any of the other environments. This includes the yellow-grey reflections that did take some getting used to but which now seem like a welcome change from the look of mirrored surfaces in other levels.
With 1.5.2 just out the door and Cheeseness not currently around to give input, why not move the changes to a branch until he returns?
ok, agreed. I'll revert the trunk. Perhaps I should set my mind towards designing a new background altogether.
What do you guys think about the brighter lava beneath? SHould I leave that as is?
I feel it's a bit too bright. As for your latest changes, I think the sky is definitely an improvement. Would love to see it in game with a more toned-down lava layer.
Edit: eh, that said, I don't want to come across as saying that Cheese's version is inferior. I like both versions, which makes it very difficult to make any kind of a decision -- so perhaps it's best if this is just left as is until Cheese or rlk show up and set things straight with a "here's how it's gonna be".
Yeah, I don't want to step on Cheese's toes either.
I'll move my changes to a branch for now.
Yes, I believe the 'murkier' original was much more enjoyable and different (in a gloomier sort of way)!
In my opinion, the sky looks better in the original, but the lava looks better in the modified version.
Tones, maybe you could modify it a bit more, then give us a shot of what it looks like.
Some cross between the two would look the best IMO.
Old version is a bit too dark/dim/faded/not-bright for the 'tone' of Neverball. But the new version is brighter than it needs to be. I like some of the color tweaks though.
Definitely modify it some more.
Both are awesome.
I'm not sure how this ended up, but from what I can see in the version of 1.5.4 I'm playing right now, it looks like it was left as it was. I was trying to go for something a little darker, and I agree with Elviz that it's nice to have something that is distinct in palette from the other backgrounds.
Tones, I'd totally be up for attempting to match the colours you were suggesting against an Uluru/outback desert theme though!
That's a neat idea cheese: cool photo. Here's another that has that hyped orange against deep blue thing
That purple sunset pic is INSANE!!! I want it for my desktop background!
PS. Just got back from Darwin, I flew over this twice
So I messed around today with creating another space background featuring our planet earth. There's even a hubble telescope orbiting around which you can make out in the first photo below.
I put it in a new branch for anyone who would be willing to check it out. There are new images in the PNG folder, plus (of course) a map called "earth" in the "map-back" folder. If you switch your data folder to the tones-bg branch, you will also find a couple maps with this background substituted for viewing purposes. Hard level 16 (ring.map) and easy level 13 (easyhalfpipe.map)
I know it's not utterly original, but I think it's a nice variation. Please let me know what you think and any suggestions to make it better.
tones, could you please create a new branch of this that starts off trunk, not trunk/data. Otherwise it is impossible for me to obtain the branch without fetching the entire history of trunk/data from revision 1.
I like the idea of being "at home". I like your shots. I'll try your branch soon and give you some feedback.
@parasti: ok, it's done.. sorry about that.
I have set the backgrounds of the medium set levels 17-20 and V to the "earth" bg so you can look at it.
The space station actually going behind the planet caught me slightly off guard, really nice touch. (As is the space station itself, ofc.)
Can't help but notice that the picture of Earth prominently displays North America.
None of the celestial bodies are rotating or moving. I'm fairly sure that adding planetary rotation is not even technically possible, but I'd love to see sun/moon traverse the sky.
On the down side, the star field seems a little bland and all the objects contrast against each other somewhat (perhaps I mean they have different levels of realism/different depictions/incoherence). I guess part of what I'm missing is a lens flare effect... Trust me, I've been into space, and this is nothing like it.
Thanks for having a look..
I also noted the "american" orientation of this particular view of the planet. There is another image of comparable quality from the TERRA program (where I found this one) that I will try and see if it's any better.
I'm glad you like the satellite. I spent hours playing with quadratic values in height/width to make the thing shrink as it went behind earth, but couldn't get it right.
I can easily make the moon do a slow progression, I will play with that. (only problem being that the lighting of the moon itself won't shift and may look incongruous)
As far as the stars being bland, I intentionally toned them down from the "deep space" look in the jupiter environment. I felt something like that would seem too "cartoonish".
Another thought I had was to try and add an occasional asteroid fly-by.
BTW, did I give enough light to the "dark" side of the moon?
ok, so here is the first image I was using:
Here are two more to choose from:
I find the 2nd one a little hyped color wise. It is a satellite composite, like the first one.
The third one was taken on the Apollo 17 mission, it has a classic look, but maybe a little "flatter" looking than the others (of course I can add some shadow around the edge)
BTW, these are all from NASA's visible earth site, photos carry no licensing fees.
EDIT: After looking at all 3 earth versions in game, I can rule out number 3, as it's grainy and just looks out of place. I've put earth number 2 in there for anyone to look at in the meantime, also a new and improved sun with lens-flare.
Like the changes a lot. My only real gripe now is the resolution of the Earth image, it looks a bit pixelated on a 1920x1080 display. (But perhaps that can be ignored until the same problem is addressed in the level shots, which look much worse at that resolution.) The fake lens flare is pretty cool; when I mentioned it, I was thinking of a lens flare effect generated by Neverball (i.e., wishful thinking), but this looks pretty good to my eyes.
Glad you like the changes. I will give some attention to splitting the difference re: the stars. I think I agree that going for the "realism" is perhaps a little too contrast-y in the context of the game and its other environments.
Your last comment about the lens flare gives me an idea, too. Stay tuned.
btw, thanks for the feedback, it's helping me maintain interest and get this thing done.
EDIT: re: the earth image, it is the same size as jupiter. And it's sampled down from a larger image. Is there anything I can do to help with the appearance at large screen resolution? For example, I could download the REALLY large version of that pic and scale it down myself, maybe better quality that way?
Hmm, Jupiter looks fine, though. I guess it's the amount of detail in the image, Jupiter is just all blurry by nature so maybe that's why I don't see the problem there.
<3 fantastic, Tones!
I love the little dinosaur.cheeseness wrote:
He's so awesome. Unfortunately, he seems aware of his impending doom.
That isn't a dinosaur, it's a very small man, wearing a very big cap!!
See! I told you you said he was a small man with a big hat!
P.S. I'm necromancing this thread because I'm feeling inspired to do some More Stuff!
Over the past couple of weeks, I've been squeezing in a few minutes here and there to revamp Volcano a bit.
I've replaced the normal stars (still haven't been able to work out why they behaved differently in the older version of Neverball, but looking at my desired effect, what was being done in 1.5.x was never right).
The biggest gripe I had with Volcano was the "floor". I had originally wanted to do something with "flat" upwards facing images (like to rlk's City background). Since it'd be silly to try to place them by hand I attempted to write a tool to convert cartesian coordinates to spherical coordinates way back in 2007. I wasn't able to get it working right and had hoped to get some advice/feedback from others. That never ended up happening and I put in a placeholder "quickfix" of three partially transparent planes rotating at varying speeds to give some illusion of dynamics and slapped a bunch of yellow waves on top (which I imagine everybody's familiar with).
Yesterday I sat down to do it for real. After working out the maths involved with the aid of a pen and some paper (I find stuff sinks in better if I work it out myself rather than looking up existing techniques/formulae), I figured I should use my original code as a starting point since it already output values in a format I could append to a .map file. Much to my surprise, it turned out that the stuff I'd written 5 years ago was working perfectly and the problems I thought I was having were caused by something else.
Here's a look at a quick test with some placeholder images.
Once the "floor" is sorted, my next task for Volcano will be implementing lightning as suggested by rlk ^_^
Very much looking forward to calling this one "finished"