Out of curiosity

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Out of curiosity

Postby Karkadann » Wed Apr 29, 2015 12:12 pm

Something I've been meaning to ask the Gehn shard mods and admins for a while.

If I where to ask "what specific changes would I have to make to my Chess age or perhaps the Backgammon age to make it good enough for a Gehn shard exclusive"
what kind of response would I get?

I would be willing to make any changes necessary to make one of my ages up to par, and since your the ones who run the show and will be hosting the age I need to know how you
would need me to customize the age to suit your taste. also a list of fan age requirements for the Gehn shard might come in handy if other Age Writers are interested in displaying
their work on the Gehn shard it might increase the number of fan ages which in turn may increase the popularity.

The reason why I picked the two board games is cuz they're as old as time, the rules are known threw out the world, and they transcend the language barrier, although if you think
any of my other ages would be more compatible let me know.

Keep in mind its just a question for now, so their is no need be concerned about saying no or yes or im not interested.
im just curios, the offer is there but if your not interested its no big deal.
thanks in advance
Last edited by Karkadann on Mon Jun 29, 2015 7:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Just out of curiosity

Postby Luna » Fri May 01, 2015 12:08 am

On http://www.guildofwriters.org/gehn/

it specifically says "canon and high quality fanages".

To start with I don't think the board games ages are canon.

Edit: haven't seen them in a while so I can't comment on quality. (My phone decided my post was done before I could add that.)
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Re: Just out of curiosity

Postby Karkadann » Thu May 07, 2015 10:52 am

Thank you for your reply, I was hoping for some constructive criticism, ideas on what I can do to make my ages more interesting,
Compliments are great but does little to help me improve my skills.
On the other hand criticism can hurt however in the long run it does more good then harm.
A friend will tell you how good it is, a true friend or critic will tell you it not good enough and here's why,
and then there are those who don't say anything..............................

its kinda like laughing at someones bad joke just to be nice
"they laughed at the joke it must be funny",
you go out and tell other people, and they think your
a moron.
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Re: Just out of curiosity

Postby Ainia » Thu May 07, 2015 12:24 pm

Shorah Karkadann,

The only input I can provide here is based on my own interpretation of the statements linked by Luna and observations about the fan Ages that have already been added to Gehn.

My interpretation of "canon" is a bit different from Luna's in that I see it as a warning against creating content that clearly contradicts existing canon (the old MOULa thread Surprise in Minkata would be an example of this, i.e., if someone created an alternate Minkata that contained different or new content). I would expect this to include canon "physics", such as how only Yeesha and the Bahro can link to different places within the same Age. This would mean that an Age which has Books linking directly to other parts of the same Age would break the canon rule.

Aesthetically, my observation is that Gehn contains Ages which look visually as if they could have been created by Cyan. So the shapes, textures, shading, lighting, etc. of those fan Ages all are very refined. I haven't observed any requirements regarding interactivity (puzzles or no puzzles, doors to be opened/closed), Age size or environment (e.g. day/night cycle vs. static). My other observation is that all the fan Ages on Gehn are very stable and thoroughly tested; for example, they don't have visual holes (where the shapes/textures suddenly disappear) or invisible holes (where you can accidentally fall through the floor or off the side of the world); and they can tolerate having a good number of explorers milling about at the same time without getting laggy or causing crashes.

Aesthetically, I think your Lost Stonehenge Age comes the closest to the visual standard of the other fan Ages already on Gehn. I suspect the tardis would present copyright concerns, though. Personally, I don't see any canon issues with your games Ages, though the last time I visited them, they weren't as visually refined as Lost Stonehenge. :) I think your maze Age (sorry, I don't recall the name ATM) also has great potential; with a bit of refinement, it could be a fun puzzle Age for Gehn. NB: It's been way too long since I've visited it, so I don't remember the "reward" at the end... there may or may not be something to adjust there, it all kinda depends.

I don't suppose any of our masters of visual quality (e.g. Tweek, Whilyam, Doobes, et al.) have created any tutorials on how others can learn to achieve similar mastery?

And hey, here's a crazy idea. How about scheduling a walk-through on Deep Island with one or two of the admins? That way, they could give you direct feedback about the good, bad and ugly. In which case, you might want to videotape everything besides keeping a chat log. Assuming the admins are available and interested, obviously. ;)

Hope that helps a wee bit.
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Re: Just out of curiosity

Postby Sirius » Thu May 07, 2015 1:46 pm

AFAIK, Gehn admins are more interested in showcase Ages which are flawless on the visual side, even though there may not be much to do in them.
One of the ideas I could suggest would be attempting to create the smallest Age possible, with no story or one that's very simple to avoid canon issues, with these two conditions:
- put a lot of details into the meshes (example: Vothol has a lot of curvy and detailed shapes. Fehnir's house has a lot of objects or painting on walls that would be too dull and flat without. This breaks the repetition of standard textures, and atones for the cubeness of the room)
- work on the lighting to create something that is both realistic enough (as long as no object glows of its own light, it should be ok), but mostly impressive. Vothol is a very good example of what light can do to make the Age beautiful: it has a lot of very dark areas, but also many smaller but bright light sources. The ambient light in Vothol is mostly red, but smaller light sources are blue. So in short: lots of contrast and mix two main colors (even recent games follow these rules).

Indeed, Stonehenge is nice, but personally, the one I appreciate the most is the Walking Maze. It doesn't have complex lighting, and yet because of the fog, it doesn't feel like it needs any.
(As for the board games, well, I personally don't enjoy kickables much, because they are a pain to move around)

From all your experiments with Max, it shows you like to try the various components available: looks like you already experimented with light, particles, and so on - now my suggestion would be to take a good look in Cyan's Ages, and list elements in the design that make each location interesting - how they use lights to draw your attention to specific objects, how they manage to break the repetitiveness of textures and models; then try to reuse it in your Ages, using the knowledge you already have.
If you can identify a few "design rules" in other people's work, it might give you great ideas. But yeah, it's very hard to find a good design that fits for each element in the Age. In my opinion, it's easy to criticize something, but working tirelessly to improve what you have is a lot harder.

Well, this was all just my opinion, but I hope it was useful ;)
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Re: Just out of curiosity

Postby janaba » Thu May 07, 2015 2:08 pm

A very nice and extensive reply, Ainia ... :P

I was actually thinking about saying sth to this too, Karkadann, but then decided to refrain from interfering here, and I still believe this to be the best as for myself still ... Ainia's response actually just inspired me to at least say how I felt about saying anything here at all lol ... 8-)

First and foremost as I was reading your request for the first time I was deeply touched, Karkadann, because you've formulated and put that out in such a lovely and humble way, and I thought 'Oh, my goodness', now he really wants to know it lol, and that's quite a challenge to answer this for our dear H'Uru team, because the subject you've put on the table here, Karkadann, is actually a quite delicate one with so many aspects to it (so many different concepts of what might be considered as canon as well as up to par quality and so much more), so that I can understand why not many are immediately keen on answering to you and the subject(s) at hand, besides that most of them are heavily occupied with RL or other stuff, I believe ...

I've been reading your request a few times to be sure and I came to the conclusion that this was put forward not to all of us as this can only be answered by the Gehn Admins and the H'Uru team, those in charge of the shard, and then, as you've already mentioned 'Compliments are great but does little to help me improve my skills', in that sense, I thought my compliments and appreciation for your ages, Karkadann, and I really appreciate them and the love and dedication that went into those, I also like them visually and interactively etc., but this won't really answer your question and further the case at hand ...

What I now just wanted to express, Karkadann, is to let you know that you're not being ignored, that I and many others maybe too do care, but that's it as for myself, everything else is up to the Gehn shard administration ... :)
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Re: Just out of curiosity

Postby Tweek » Fri May 08, 2015 1:12 am

Ainia wrote:I don't suppose any of our masters of visual quality (e.g. Tweek, Whilyam, Doobes, et al.) have created any tutorials on how others can learn to achieve similar mastery?

It's on my to do list.

As far as my understanding goes if you want content on Gehn it needs to look as good as Cyan stuff (or as close to it as possible) and it needs to fit with the lore. I must disagree with Sirus regarding "showcase" Ages though. Certainly nice looking Ages are appreciated on the Gehn Shard, but so are nice looking Ages with stuff to do. Most of the "showcase" aspect comes from the fact that a lot of Age builders don't know how to wire up content to make puzzles and what not (I've been building stuff since 09 and have only just wrapped my head around elements of alcscript).

Admittedly I've not seen much of your content Kark, I don't really play fan Ages anymore (well I don't really play Uru anymore) but I'm happy to provide feedback/suggestions if needed.
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Re: Just out of curiosity

Postby Karkadann » Sat May 09, 2015 10:12 am

Thanks every one for your suggestions I think I'll start with studying Cyan ages and assets and adapt what they do to some of my ages, then perhaps use some of the other idea's here, any more criticism, ideas are always welcome as far as im concerned.
You can not learn from your mistakes or shortcomings if no one tells you of them.

in the mean time

Iv done numerous experiments with the Cyan plug-in components Id be happy to help out with "stuff to do" even though im working In Max and most here are working in Blender the "stuff" can be always added with a prp file.
It couldn't be to much more difficult then the /location, hit and miss game I played to get all the Relto pages, HMS Sword, Minkata soccer field Ext. Ext, in position.
I never could find an age importer for Max and never could understand Blender well enough to use that one, all the prp files I added to Cyan ages where all done via Max-create, export, inspect, move export inspect until I got it right :D

edit to add
I think a show case age should have some interactive element to it that matches the artistic content for it to be a true showcase age,
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