Platform Masters Title
Platform Masters - Will you be the world's next platform master?

Sentus Mountains - clouds and grass

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #391: While doing the far ground decals for Mount Sentusia, I realized that they didn't follow my standards. Thus, I updated them, of which also affects the Sentus Mountains. Being both inconstent and nonstandard for the closest ground decals, I redone them, along with adding in air taxis and updating the grass. In this screenshot, you can clearly see the clouds. The grass, unlike before, is also smoother transitioning for how tall it is. Looking at this screenshot, it doesn't seem like much has changed. If you look closely, you can see an air taxi, of which wasn't there before.

Sentus Mountains - Emerist and the freeway

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #392: Best viewed in the starting area is the town of Emerist. Emerist, found to the lower left of center, is a small town. Getting to it is best done using the freeway and the exit ramps. You'll also see a train going by and it's visible in this scene. Because of its great distance, it's hard to see. Like the earlier ground decals, you'll find plenty of rivers, forests, and farm fields around.

Sentus Mountains - Ryanara and Lake Ryan

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #393: When I made Lake Ryan, I planned for it to have a narrow spot for which a bridge will be added to cross over it. Unexpected to me, when I traced the shape, it turned out to resemble a face. From that, I shaped it slightly more so it resembled a face even more. Just like I have an arrow head for a cloud (with the medium cloud density) and other odd shapes you'll often find, this is just some of the hidden details you can find scattered around. Note the size of Ryanara - it may seem big, but it's actually considerably smaller than my own home town, of which is tiny compared to the Minneapolis area. It's only like 4 square miles. To the right of Ryanara, you'll find the Ryan River, of which splits in 2 paths (the main river leads to Lake Ryan). What's with all this "Ryan" stuff? It's my third favorite name, after Jeremy and Melissa.

Sentus Mountains - freeway interchange near Ryanara

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #394: Just outside Ryanara, you'll find a freeway interchange, to allow you to get on a different freeway (often to change direction, such as from being westbound to going northbound) while still maintaining the freeway speed. If you look closely enough, you can see the 2 freeway lanes. Also, as you approach Ryanara, the freeway loses its gap.

Sentus Mountains - a rest area

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #395: From my long trips to the Minnapolis area and back, you'll find rest areas scattered around. Rest areas are often places to go to the rest room though some contain maps, tourist info, and other such things. They're only just a tad off the freeway and it's easy enough to return to the freeway when done. In this screenshot, you can see such a freeway, complete with entrance and exit routes, even an area for 18-wheelers. It's hard to see the road due to the shadows from the forests obsuring it. The building, however, is easy enough to spot - the odd bright white area.

Sentus Mountains - air taxis on top of a mountain

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #396: From on top of a mountain, the view is quite spectacular. Like with the layered air taxis idea, I'm having the air taxis at different flight levels. These ones go 480 mph (I just set the speed to 80, for 80 CU/fr). That darker-looking sky from the previous screenshots is actually a normal thing - it happens in the real world as well though it takes a rather insane amount of height to see it noticeably.

Sentus Mountains - supersonic air taxis far above

Date: September 20, 2012
Screenshot #397: With worldwide travel being rather common, especially supersonic travel, I added these air taxis in for that fast and sometimes luxurious travel to the other side of the planet. These air taxis are 16 Kbl above the ground, very high above. At this extreme height, it's easy enough to see how vast the mountains are. The sky is also significantly darker, but this is far from high enough to see the stars - you need to almost triple this height to see them. The Sentus Mountains makes it easy to reach these extreme heights.

Fullscreen attempts round 2 - the view before

Date: September 21, 2012
Screenshot #398: Thanks to Kuro Ageha on PM's forum, I now, supposedly, have a way to get fullscreen at last. However, it comes with a catch, at least at the moment. Before, with SDL, it was an upside-down scene, an unexpected extra window, and a poor frame rate that caused it to not be an option, especially the latter. With the ChangeDisplaySettings function, I now have a way to get fullscreen. However, there's a small problem. The problem? Well, it's not using just the client area like I would have expected it to. It's just the whole window. The task bar is also still visible. This isn't full screen, but it does have potential to serve this purpose and I'm now much closer to realizing this.

Fullscreen attempts round 2 - the view after

Date: September 21, 2012
Screenshot #399: Oddly, if I return to Windowed mode, the bottom 9 pixels of the window is cut off for some odd, unknown reason. My code is shown, for what parts would be obvious.

Carnivalesta - processing the stands

Date: October 5, 2012
Screenshot #400: After having spent over a week remaking the stands (and redoing the far mountains as one of the stands requires it), the (hopefully) final remake of Carnivalesta is coming along. Making the stands bigger was one thing, taking the most time (though less time than I thought). Getting them positioned is a different subject. Previously, the stands were unique to each layer and only went out so far. They didn't go out far enough. I also ran out of ideas... until a few months ago when I had an idea. Much like the sailboats are for Lake Keveran, the stands will repeat in every layer. However, instead of repeating the same 5 in each layer, all 34 stands repeat in a single layer and all layers use the same 34 stands, though in randomized orders. However, the way the stands were made meant I couldn't do that without obvious pixelation effects occurring. Having those at 4 being moved to 1.5 means significant pixelation. As a consequence, I needed to redo every single stand so that they were all at the same distance. With standards set for sizing and the like, I could also have the stands conform to these standards. The main one is the power of 2 system that pretty much everything manmade uses. Buildings, being manmade, thus must conform to those standards. Most of the buildings are 3 blocks wide (96 CU - based off 32*3) with a fair amount at 192 CU (based of 64*3), 80 (based off 16*5), 112 (based off 16*7), and other lesser common sizes.

During the standardization, I made a few enhancements and added a few new details to the stands. How would you like a soda that's 8 cubic coordinate units for 90 Egani? Of course, that seems like pointless info. How about expressing it as 43.6 cubic inches or 714.7 cubic centimeters) for $1.80? That's more comprehendable to you and the price seems really high. That's actually normal for carnivals. Everything at carnivals is like double to even quadruple the price what it would normally be. For 60 cents for 700 milliliters, taking out the carnival price hike, that seems more reasonable.

With all of the stands redone, for the upscaling part that is, I needed to determine what positions they would have and also what the order will be for each layer. For that, I needed Excel. Once I set all the positions, making the actual layers themselves follows. That's what this screenshot is. So, okay, the image looks like a random mess and all the layers are linked. To spread out everything, I need to unlink the layer (2 in this case, after the light blue text) move everything to the right (384 pixels in this case, based on the amount in the gray text). I then repeat for all of the other stands, including the loose balls from Ball Toss that you'll find scattered all over. I then, after positioning everything, add in the extra balls that are in front of the stands, stuck on a roof top, etc. When I get to the stands at 3.5, I'll also be including the balls into the open between the stands because a different system is used for that. The final step is merging all the layers into a single layer, scaling the image down, and saving the final results.

What's with all the "LoopCount++;"? It's one of my tricks for quickly processing highly repetitive bits of programming. It's arranged like a table in this case. By utilizing the "replace" feature in Notepad and/or Wordpad, I can get rid of the tabs, replacing them with spaces.