Level Design Tips

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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Electriking » Mon Dec 05, 2016 4:26 pm

178: Take caution if you use glitchy elements in your levels. Pretty self-explanatory.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Amine Retro » Mon Dec 05, 2016 5:23 pm

King of Eterity wrote:178: Don't use glitchy elements in your levels. Pretty self-explanatory.
omfg, i just came to this thread and in my mind i was like:
"i'm going to type about not using glitches in your levels"
and i see your post in front of my eyes, then i'm like "what the crap"
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Electriking » Tue Dec 06, 2016 5:10 pm

179: For episodes, if you plan to use custom map music use LunaLua and a music.ini file in the episode. The custom music option in PGE does not work in SMBX 1.3/2.0 (1.4 I don't know about and probably works in PGE engine episodes though) and asking for people to replace the default music with music given in the episode only causes inconvenience.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby loop13 » Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:14 pm

King of Eterity wrote:179: For episodes, if you plan to use custom music use LunaLua and a music.ini file in the episode. The custom music option in PGE does not work in SMBX 1.3/2.0 (1.4 I don't know about and probably works in PGE engine episodes though) and asking for people to replace the default music with music given in the episode only causes inconvenience.
It works for me. Maybe it only works if you put it in the level folder.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Enjl » Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:15 pm

King of Eterity wrote:179: For episodes, if you plan to use custom music use LunaLua and a music.ini file in the episode. The custom music option in PGE does not work in SMBX 1.3/2.0 (1.4 I don't know about and probably works in PGE engine episodes though) and asking for people to replace the default music with music given in the episode only causes inconvenience.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Quantix » Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:02 pm

Enjl wrote:
King of Eterity wrote:179: For episodes, if you plan to use custom music use LunaLua and a music.ini file in the episode. The custom music option in PGE does not work in SMBX 1.3/2.0 (1.4 I don't know about and probably works in PGE engine episodes though) and asking for people to replace the default music with music given in the episode only causes inconvenience.
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I think he's talking about custom music for the world map actually.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Wohlstand » Wed Dec 07, 2016 3:03 am

Quantix wrote:
Enjl wrote:
King of Eterity wrote:179: For episodes, if you plan to use custom music use LunaLua and a music.ini file in the episode. The custom music option in PGE does not work in SMBX 1.3/2.0 (1.4 I don't know about and probably works in PGE engine episodes though) and asking for people to replace the default music with music given in the episode only causes inconvenience.
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I think he's talking about custom music for the world map actually.
Custom world map music is natively supported in 38A and PGE Engine. Custom music in LunaLUA-SMBX (and SMBX 2.0) is supported only in case you will make in-episode music.ini to redefine default musics with your own (instead default tracks are will be played your custom).

Specification of music.ini: (ignore "music-main" section which is required in PGE config pack global only and never using in episode custom music ini file)
http://wohlsoft.ru/pgewiki/Game_Configu ... #music.ini

The full list of world map musics is declared here:
http://wohlsoft.ru/pgewiki/SMBX64_Music ... map_musics

Another way to use Audio API in LunaLUA and play custom musics yourself.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Enjl » Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:25 am

Quantix wrote:
Enjl wrote:
King of Eterity wrote:179: For episodes, if you plan to use custom music use LunaLua and a music.ini file in the episode. The custom music option in PGE does not work in SMBX 1.3/2.0 (1.4 I don't know about and probably works in PGE engine episodes though) and asking for people to replace the default music with music given in the episode only causes inconvenience.
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I think he's talking about custom music for the world map actually.
Ahh that makes sense. Yeah, in that case music.ini is the way to go.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Snessy the duck » Sun Dec 18, 2016 7:21 am

180: If you can't get your level done in time for a contest or something like that, don't try to rush it to completion. Rushed levels are almost never good, and you don't NEED to submit it to the contest. You could finish the level and submit it in the levels forum, or you could come back to it for another contest!
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Cedur » Sun Dec 18, 2016 7:56 am

Snessy the duck wrote:180: If you can't get your level done in time for a contest or something like that, don't try to rush it to completion. Rushed levels are almost never good, and you don't NEED to submit it to the contest. You could finish the level and submit it in the levels forum, or you could come back to it for another contest!
I don't support this attitude, especially since the rules say that a contest level must be started from scratch, and participating with a rushed level is better than not participating at all.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Electriking » Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:43 am

Supershroom wrote:
Snessy the duck wrote:180: If you can't get your level done in time for a contest or something like that, don't try to rush it to completion. Rushed levels are almost never good, and you don't NEED to submit it to the contest. You could finish the level and submit it in the levels forum, or you could come back to it for another contest!
I don't support this attitude, especially since the rules say that a contest level must be started from scratch, and participating with a rushed level is better than not participating at all.
Well how how are the judges supposed to know that the level was started or existed before the contest was announced? As long as there is no public evidence available of the level's existence before the contest (or in most cases before the end of the judging period) then it can't be disqualified unless it violates other rules.

Also, if you send in a rushed level and it scores low, then you risk being seen as a bad level designer and overlooked, and therefore could damage your future as a level designer.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Cedur » Sun Dec 18, 2016 12:04 pm

I just checked the official CC rules and there's nowhere a "you must start this from scratch", but I really expected it and it should be there, right? Because if you keep a level for a future contest then you have some unfair advantage over everyone else, so I'd at least expect anyone to NOT do this as a matter of gentlemanship. Also I don't see how a rushed level would be "future-damaging" if you say that you had to rush.

Anyway

181: If you include a secret path / exit that involves e.g. finding a switch, then don't put the switch before the checkpoint and the secret after the checkpoint. It makes the checkpoint pretty much dysfunctional, especially if an extra challenge awaits you after finding the secret.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Electriking » Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:21 pm

Supershroom wrote:181: If you include a secret path / exit that involves e.g. finding a switch, then don't put the switch before the checkpoint and the secret after the checkpoint. It makes the checkpoint pretty much dysfunctional, especially if an extra challenge awaits you after finding the secret.
I don't think it actually does matter, especially on the later worlds. I'm pretty sure this has been done in Mario games previously.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Cedur » Sun Dec 18, 2016 3:06 pm

What happened to me in "Boiling Bunker" (Apocalypse of Foroze) is that there's a red switch (in form of a goomba) somewhere around the start, then the checkpoint comes, and after that there's the gate to the 2nd star that you need the switch for, and if you die after the checkpoint, the switch is disabled oc, so you can quit-and-restart and then play all the way to the checkpoint again. The road to the 2nd star comes up with some extra challenge and I messed it up a couple of times before I quit and reserved doing it for later.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Snessy the duck » Thu Dec 22, 2016 5:07 am

This tip sucked so I removed it.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Enjl » Thu Dec 22, 2016 11:18 am

Snessy the duck wrote:182: Avoid using secret exits in standalone levels or in episodes without a world map. Secret exits are supposed to be used on world maps in order to unlock secret paths, and serve little to no purpose without them.
False. Secret exits are a method to expand upon a level without making it overstay its welcome. Secret exits can break levels, but they can also make them. Besides the value they hold in some levels, they can also be used very creatively in hub-based episodes. See: warp exits.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Snessy the duck » Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:14 pm

Enjl wrote:
Snessy the duck wrote:182: Avoid using secret exits in standalone levels or in episodes without a world map. Secret exits are supposed to be used on world maps in order to unlock secret paths, and serve little to no purpose without them.
False. Secret exits are a method to expand upon a level without making it overstay its welcome. Secret exits can break levels, but they can also make them. Besides the value they hold in some levels, they can also be used very creatively in hub-based episodes. See: warp exits.
I meant more SMW-like secret exits that were designed to be used with a world map, sorry for not clarifying that!
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby Fuyu » Fri Dec 23, 2016 5:05 pm

182: The process of making a level doesn't necessarily have to be planned, however when done so that way you have a higher chance of making an exceptionally good level. The steps to designing a level I particularly think work best for me, and might for you, are: 1) Choose Theme and Gimmicks, 2) Plan enemies/misc NPCs for the level, 3) Gather resources for your level, 4) Design the level, 5) Make it on PGE, 6) Choose a music that best fit the kind of level you've made.
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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby MECHDRAGON777 » Fri Dec 23, 2016 8:18 pm

Intuition wrote:182: The process of making a level doesn't necessarily have to be planned, however when done so that way you have a higher chance of making an exceptionally good level. The steps to designing a level I particularly think work best for me, and might for you, are: 1) Choose Theme and Gimmicks, 2) Plan enemies/misc NPCs for the level, 3) Gather resources for your level, 4) Design the level, 5) Make it on PGE, 6) Choose a music that best fit the kind of level you've made.
I think that is 183, but music is something I never can find. For me, I look for graphics of a theme I want, then look for graphics I can turn into a gimmick. I draw my levels on paper first and try to recreate it on the screen. I think the hardest part is finding music, and making it easy enough for a beginner to beat. (Also knowing how to end a level is a thing.)

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Re: Level Design Tips

Postby PixelPest » Fri Dec 23, 2016 10:33 pm

The design process is always a fun topic of discussion. For me, I usually just have an idea pop into my head and then I start building the level. I never make a skeleton or anything, I just start building and add in whatever scripts and custom GFX I need as I go. Sometimes I'll have to go back to add more BGOs and although sometimes secrets seem to just naturally fit in as I build I level, often I'll go back and add Dragon Coins and hidden areas when I'm done a full version of the level. Music kinda just makes its way in whenever. Usually after I'm about 25% done and have a good feel for the atmosphere I'll find myself a music track, however sometimes it's right at the beginning of the process that I choose it or near the very end. My levels end basically when I've gotten bored, finished making use of my idea, or when I've decided I absolutely hate it. Basically, I just go for it and let things fall into place as it comes. That method works best for me, although I think level designing methodology varies greatly from person to person


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