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

Keveran Desert - trees along Keveran River

Date: December 21, 2014
Screenshot #581: Originally, I wasn't planning on Keveran Desert in having any greenery in it, except for the very far areas. Then I was suggested of adding greenery around the river, the Keveran River, as I originally had and it made sense. Then, after a few years, came along the idea of adding trees along this river to liven it up more. And what a treat that turned out to be! Of course, it makes no sense to have trees, say, in the area where the sand dunes are or on top of that cliff. There's no easy water for water-hungry trees. Cacti can easily handle minimal water, typical of a desert. However, since a river flows through this area, and a major river at that, water hungry trees can easily get their thirst quenched. This screenshot is one of the better views where you can easily see the depth and the trees following the river. By the way: there are 6334 total unique trees.

Jeremy's House - speed limit and street and avenue signs

Date: December 22, 2014
Screenshot #582: I originally wanted to add the street and avenue signs on top of the stop signs when I extended the range of the stop signs but I forgot about doing that. The sign is a bit tricky to read but it says "237 Ave N". Then came along an idea while working on Nodera Highlands - speed limit signs. Speed limits are in CU/fr. The sign is a bit difficult to read the smaller text, but it states "max speed 4". 4 CU/fr is 24 mph (38.6 km/h). This screenshot shows both the speed limit signs and the street and avenue signs as best as possible.

Jeremy's House - far speed limit signs

Date: December 22, 2014
Screenshot #583: Um, Jeremy, why are you speeding? There are speed limit signs farther away as well. These ones cover the other axis. Both orientations of speed limit signs are spaced every 1 Kbl. Short of another minor enhancement or an oversight and ignoring story-exclusive content, Jeremy's House is now in the done bin.

Ronnis - new signs and pathways

Date: December 24, 2014
Screenshot #584: You remember all those "champ begins July 20" signs and stuff, right? You find that almost everywhere - on the sailboats in Lake Keveran, on a certain 18-wheeler in Maglev Train, and on the floor in the space bases, not to mention Carnivalesta itself. Well, Ronnis has one too, in the form of a billboard. It's also a lot more detailed. The smaller text that's difficult to read has the familiar "champ begins July 20" and much more. The background shows Keveran Forest in its amazing glory which definitely goes well with the "breathtaking views" from the "BEST" lining the bottom left corner which is also on the 18-wheelers though harder to read.

The other sign is an advertisement sign for Keveran Air Taxis, an air taxi service that's in the game. (If you check screenshots that show the air taxi in world 7, Air Taxi, you'll see this company name on the air taxi itself.) The sign mainly focuses on introducing the supersonic air taxis. The background is from Keveran Desert showing Lake Keveran around it from the lowest altitude that the supersonic air taxis are. The next higher altitude is the highest one used and is twice this height. The next lower one is right near the speed of sound but not supersonic.

Watch video showing worlds 1, 2, and 4 in their enhanced state

This text is intended to be temporary. Because YouTube is so messed up as of the time I posted this, I've abandoned them in favor of an alternative that isn't so limiting any more. Not only has commenting been removed, I can't post videos over 15 minutes long any more and I lost the custom thumbnail feature too. As a consequence, I'm now with Dailymotion which, although a bit limiting at the moment, is better than YouTube on my end (but the lack of notifications of new videos and the like hurts the usability, but it's the only way I can post new videos right now, especially the fairly-common videos over 15 minutes. Until YouTube corrects their 3 major flaws, I will no longer be posting videos on YouTube. Until I can get popular enough on Dailymotion for partnership there, the planned-on music overview video will not be posted until I can, once again, post videos longer than now 60 minutes (I need a good 2 to 3 hours).

I'm also unsure how to embed dailymotion videos as there doesn't seem to be an "embed" link or the like.

Lake Keveran - working on the trees

Date: December 28, 2014
Screenshot #585: Another several days, another spreadsheet containing a huge multitude of numbers. Short of ending up with trees in the water, in the middle of the road, in someone's beach umbrella, in someone's house, or even in the life guard's room, I have to carefully position each and every tree. It turns out that Lake Keveran has 1024 total unique trees. I can't just take the simple, automated route either as the complexity of this is quite high. Sure I can generate and autocrop the trees automatically, that's not the issue. The issue is the complexity involved. I also had to make sure I optimized this as well. Having every tree visible right away isn't a smart idea. Given the most densely forested area, I could easily need an extra 500 draws when it could easily be done in only about 50 draws. This screenshot is only a small hint to that complexity where I'm moving a tree a certain number of pixels.

Lake Keveran - the big forest

Date: December 29, 2014
Screenshot #586: The density of the trees in Lake Keveran varies. Some areas have a very high density, others don't. On top of that, trees tend to be more dense the closer they are to the water, but not too close. Combine these and you get a distribution like this. Note the big forest - this is the biggest, densest forested area here. Also the occasional trees on the islands.

Ronnis - new signs and pathways

Date: December 29, 2014
Screenshot #587: This area shows yet another section of Lake Keveran. This is one of the lower density areas. I thought that this was going to complete Lake Keveran, but since I referenced the ground decal map to see what the range was, getting 36 SU, I ended up with an odd gap from 36 to 40 SU that I need to fill in. This means I'll have probably 1050 to 1120 total trees instead.

Barugan Reef - trees on islands

Date: February 2, 2015
Screenshot #588: It was a long, boring task to do, made even longer by the lack of TV and other things going on off the side. However, Barugan Reef is now fully finished, bugs and oversights aside. The closest island here is at 16 SU, the second closest. It's easy to see the trees on the much farther islands. In total, there are 667 unique trees. Starting at 160 SU, I began utilizing copy paste on a few tree styles due to the fact that the trees are just 3 or 4 pixels tall by 2 pixels wide. That's way too small to really even make out any unique details so I felt that it made more sense to use copy paste. The islands at 128 SU, the next closest ones, have the trees as being 4 to 5 pixels tall. That's still hardly anything, but it's big enough to need the variation. At the 448 SU point, you can only just barely make out the trees since they're so small. The island just behind Jeremy is at 160 SU - you can see just how tiny the trees are at that distance.

Air Taxi - trees on islands

Date: February 2, 2015
Screenshot #589: The closest island, at 8 SU, has some easily visible trees and there's one area where the trees are effectively in a small forest, a very small forest. Can you spot the trees on the island at 256 SU on the far left? They're fairly easy to spot. How about those at 384 SU on the far right? They're trickier, but you can still make them out. Now try the island at 608 SU. Those trees are extremely difficult to make out. Now, can you spot the island at 736 SU? You'd have to have some seriously good vision to spot that island without needing to zoom in! If you can't find it, look on the right side of where the island at 384 SU is.

Planning the lighting for Carnivalesta

Date: February 9, 2015
Screenshot #590: Carnivalesta, again, is looking to be a pain to do. While I've already mapped where the trees are going to be and input this into Excel, there's one thing that just isn't right. That issue is the lighting. What's wrong this time? As I have it now, the lights are correct except for the fact that they are positioned on the ground and alphablended instead of simply added. The actual light source is 15 blocks above the ground so it results in a different gradient, a smoother gradient like I had before. Instead of an alpha of 2 being the threshold, I'm using 1 for the maximum effect and an optimal gradient. At first, when I did this, I was thinking of the alphablending routine. However, lights stack in addition. There are multiple lights combining to light up the main carnival grounds so some weird gradients come out of it as a consequence near the edge. There's a lot of little things I need to watch out for so I spent a while planning it out.

Before I bother applying the lighting effects to the trees, I need to get the lighting updated. I still have the 2 rides I'd like to add in as well. One ride is a bumper cars ride where you can't see the action but it's animated due to the lights on the outside. Another ride is also animated and involves a sudden freefall. The ride rises up fairly high then freefalls for a short bit. It does this repeatedly then eventually returns to the original position. These 2 additions, at least, should get close to about 1536 pixels for the width - that's my main goal. I still also need to update the stands, but only the ones that use backgrounds from various settings like Lake Keveran or Carnivalesta from high above. They are based on when the world wasn't finished. It should only be a small adjustment for the most part.