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




Last updated: Feb 2, 2011 (second version - near-complete rewrite)
Level 4 update on Apr 1, 2011 (Added section 3)
Level 3 update on Mar 11, 2011 (Added 4 scenic screenshots (worlds 3, 5, 9, and 10); fixed a grammar error)
Level 4 update on Aug 4, 2011 (Changed the list into a table and updated the screenshots; a few minor adjustments)
Level 2 update on Aug 20, 2011 (World 7, Air Taxi, declassified - info added and adjusted accordingly)
Level 5 update on Jan 17, 2012 (Screenshots updated, new details added, and some proofreading)
Level 5 update on Jun 24, 2012 (All screenshots updated with higher resolution details available, regions described, all worlds' and regions' names declassified, other various updates)
Level 2 update on Jul 23, 2012 (Barugan Islands screenshot posted with its text updated accordingly)
Level 1 update on Jul 26, 2012 (Lake Keveran screenshot updated)
Level 3 update on Sep 8, 2012 (Mount Sentusia screenshot added, Keveran Desert's screenshot updated)
Level 6 update on Apr 24, 2014 (all screenshots updated, all details updated, general proofreading)



1 What is a world in a video game?



A world, in video games (especially the platformer genre), is a group of levels with a similar setting or theme (such as a forest or the mountains). Platform Masters has 20 worlds. Each world has its own background scenery, the theme, environment, or setting. Each world also has its own unique boss. What is a boss? It is a more powerful enemy, often with more complex actions than a normal one, usually marking the end of a "chapter". Also, in general, later worlds are more difficult than earlier ones. Platform Masters is the same way.

2 The list of worlds



There are 20 worlds spanning across 7 regions in Platform Masters, each with 15 levels (ignoring tutorial, developer secrets, and story-exclusive levels). Each new world accessed introduces a new game play element not seen in previous worlds. This is a list of what is known to the public. The screenshots for unfinished worlds look dull and have low detail as they were only the bare minimums I set (tip: click on the image to view a full-size version of the scene):

List of Platform Masters' worlds
SceneSpecsDescription
Region: Ronnisa
The Ronnisa region is a heavily populated temporare region found in the westernmost part of the overworld. It is home to 60 million residents, 50 million of which live in Ronnis.
a scenic view of Jeremy's House, world 1World: 1
Name: Jeremy's House
Region: Ronnisa
Theme: neighborhood
This is where all the action begins. Jeremy's house is located in the western outskirts of Ronnis. Traffic and closely-spaced houses complete with sidewalks and detailed roads dominate the foreground. Beyond the houses are the Yuris Hills that separate the Ronnisa and Yuris regions. Farm fields and the coastline are visible beyond. A small coastal village with a highway are visible. Hovering above are a few air taxis, the hovering, levitating vehicles of the future. This world is a masterpiece for its scenery and really demonstrates the "takes parallax scrolling to an extreme never seen before" very well. The screenshot shows the setting near ground level, the traffic, signs, and the obvious 3D-like appearance with the roads and house shadows.
a scenic view of Ronnis, world 2World: 2
Name: Ronnis
Region: Ronnisa
Theme: large metropolis
Ronnis, home to about 50 million residents, is an extremely massive seaport city. The scene has a detailed, realistically-animated traffic light, advertisement signs, and benches up close. The Keveran River is beyond with occasional sailboats drifting by. Beyond this are a large number of tall sky scrapers, including one that's 128 stories tall topped with a sign and having sky bridges crossing between them. Between the buildings are very detailed roads. Beyond the city is the coast with 2 small islands barely visible in the far background. The screenshot shows a lot of the details Ronnis has.
a scenic view of Ronnisa Plains, world 3World: 3
Name: Ronnisa Plains
Region: Ronnisa
Theme: plains
With warm moist air coming from the south being redirected upwards from the Keveran Mountains and cool dry air coming from the north and funneled by the Keveran Mountains, Ronnisa Plains is very prone to severe weather and storms. It's raining in Ronnisa Plains but the rain makes for a pretty sight. A few trees make up the foreground part of the scenery. A major 6-lane highway with high density traffic going along it lined by maglev freight train rails and power lines. The Keveran River beyond is guided by the Ronn Hills in front and the Keveran Mountains beyond. The screenshot shows the weather effects from the rain, the traffic, the Ronn Hills, and the Keveran Mountains. This world is only partially finished so the screenshot doesn't fully accurately reflect the true looks of the area.
Region: Keveran
The Keveran region is mountainous subtropical region. It is dominated by short mountains, the Keveran Mountains, typically reaching 7000 to 8500 feet in elevation for the main chain. The Keveran region is found in the southwestern corner of the overworld, southeast of the Ronnisa region.
a scenic view of Keveran Desert, world 4World: 4
Name: Keveran Desert
Region: Keveran
Theme: desert
Tucked away deep into the Keveran Mountains is the Keveran Desert. This canyon, carved out by the Keveran River, is filled with sand dunes and cacti outside where the Keveran River is where greenery is present. A massive 600-3/4-foot-tall (183.1 meters) banded rock cliff is present beyond the river. On top of the cliff are the Keveran Mountains that barely poke into the clouds. Well beyond these is Lake Keveran, a different section of the very large and long lake. The screenshot shows the sand dunes, traffic, trains, the Keveran River, rock cliff, and the Keveran Mountains beyond.
a scenic view of Lake Keveran, world 5World: 5
Name: Lake Keveran
Region: Keveran
Theme: lake
Notorious for its crystal clear, warm, shallow water and the beautiful Keveran Mountains, Lake Keveran is a major tourist destination. The best views come from far above the waves. Being a lake, water dominates the foreground area. Numerous sailboats zip by over the water. Beyond the shore where a turquoise to blue gradient is present, beachgoers with their towels and umbrellas line the shore. Lifeguard stands and dressing rooms with lifeguard and janitorial supplies also line the shore. Following the shore are gravel roads with access roads coming from a paved county road with traffic on it beyond. The Keveran Mountains are beyond. The screenshot shows an aerial view, as from the supersize level, and the true beauty that Lake Keveran has to offer.
a scenic view of Keveran Forest, world 6World: 6
Name: Keveran Forest
Region: Keveran
Theme: forest
In the easternmost part of the Keveran region is a very large forest in the foothills of the Keveran Mountains. With the mountains blocking the warm, very moist tropical air and a cold front moving through, Keveran Forest is very misty in the low-lying areas. The foreground part has a few trees followed by a clearing where a highway with maglev freight trains and power lines taking up this area. Beyond are several more trees then the Teigram (pronounced "Tee gram") River that the trees follow. Lots of trees continue for a large distance into the background and the Keveran Mountains beyond. The ocean's coast is visible beyond, but barely. The screenshot shows the closer details in the mist near the ground. This world is highly unfinished so the screenshot doesn't accurately reflect the true looks of the area.
Region: Barugan
The Barugan region is a tropical paradise, filled with dozens of islands, and Baruga Crater, a fairly large elliptical impact crater. These islands make up the Barugan Archipelago. This region is a popular tourist destination for fun in the Sun. It is found in the southernmost part of the overworld.
a scenic view of air taxi, world 7World: 7
Name: Air Taxi
Region: Barugan
Theme: futuristic flight
Air taxis are the vehicles of the future. Using trackless magnetic levitation by harnessing and concentrating Earth's magnetic field, air taxis can go almost anywhere with far more flexibility than airplanes, helicopters, or cars. Air taxi is the first of the game's vehicular-based worlds, where the scenery constantly zips by. In this case, it's islands from the western part of the Barugan Archipelago. Be careful not to fall in the water here or you'll lose a life from falling out. The screenshot shows a platform level scrolling by with islands drifting by.
a scenic view of Barugan Reef, world 8World: 8
Name: Barugan Reef
Region: Barugan
Theme: tropical coral reef
In the northeastern part of the Barugan Archipelago, is a large reef that teeters on a massive cliff near Baruga Crater. The scenery has 2 parts. Underwater, a coral reef with corals, fish, urchins, and other sea life can be found near the edge of a very tall cliff. Above the water, the Barugan Archipelago is clearly visible, especially Baruga Crater, a large elliptical impact crater. The upper areas are enhanced by the beautiful sunset sky. It gets very dark far underwater so take great care when traveling deep underwater. The screenshot shows Jeremy Kaplan bobbing up and down with the waves while treading water.
Region: Sentus
The Sentus region is a mountainous region on a large island called Sentusia Island. These mountains are very rough and jagged and rise upwards of 26,000 feet (7900 meters) above sea level.
a scenic view of Carnivalesta, world 9World: 9
Name: Carnivalesta
Region: Sentus
Theme: carnival
Carnivalesta is a great carnival and fiesta mix that is held annually during the entire month of July. It is located in the southern foothills of the Sentus Mountains in the Sentusia region on Sentusia Island. Several barker and food stands, with tables, make up the closest part of the scenery. Theme park rides are mixed in the middle, including a massive 500-foot-tall (150 meters) roller coaster and a gigantic 350-foot-tall sky wheel (110 meters). The theme of the theme park revolves around Platform Masters as Carnivalesta hosts and runs the Platform Masters championship. Covering the entire carnival grounds are light poles with colorful flags strewn between them. Beyond, it's very dark due to the fact it's night. The 8-story Sentus Hotel is located just beyond the carnival grounds. A highway with active, well-lit traffic on it and maglev trains and powerlines paralleling it is just beyond followed by the Sentus Mountains. With enough height to get away from the blindingly bright lights down below, a sky glow is visible from Hersiak (a medium-small city of 10,000 residents) and the astronomically correct star-filled night sky comes clearly into view. Away from the light sources, Carnivalesta gets very dark but get near a fire and it lights up. The screenshot shows the stands, lights, and other Carnival stuff in front with the Sentus Mountains beyond.
a scenic view of Sentus Mountains, world 10World: 10
Name: Sentus Mountains
Region: Sentus
Theme: mountains
Sentus Mountains is in the southernmost part of the Sentus Mountains, beyond Hersiak and before Osa. Reaching upwards of 21,627 feet (6592 meters) above the ground, these huge, very tall mountains mountains dominate the view and go out as far as the eye can see. The main feature besides the mountains are the ground decals between the mountains, showing Emerist and especially Ryanara, a medium-sized city of 70,000 residents. The ground decals really show a lot of detail, such as freeway interchanges, exit and on ramps, rest areas, forests, farm fields, rivers coming down from the mountains, and various others. There are 2 platform levels visible first thing, leading toward Cydis. The screenshot shows Ryanara with Lake Ryan and the many other details present.
a scenic view of Maglev Train, world 11World: 11
Name: Train
Region: Sentus
Theme: maglev train travel
This high-speed maglev freight train zips by forests, villages, cities, farms, and mountains at a blazing fast 192 mph (309 km/h). The train has 3 types of train cars. On the ends are antidrag cars that smoothly redirect air away from them. Tourists go in these to learn about the manufacturing process. Tank cars haul hydrogen. The other cars haul large containers that stack 0, 1, or 2 crates high. If you wait long enough, you can actually see the Desleal Train Station zip by. This is the game's most graphically complex world due to all the details that are put into it. This world is unfinished so the screenshot doesn't accurately reflect the true looks of the area.
a scenic view of Sentus Caverns, world 12World: 12
Name: Sentus Caverns
Region: Sentus
Theme: cave mine
The Sentus Caverns, also called the Musan Mines as they dominate the Musan region, is a massive manmade cave serving mining operations for diamonds, gold, silver, iron, and various other materials. A somewhat recent mining disaster caused Sentus Sector 1 to flood resulting in a deep pool of mud to be found at the bottom. The mining practices cause the interior of the mines to be very misty, keeping the mud moist. This is the game's only world that has a ceiling, a vertical height limit. The screenshot shows the walls, train tracks buried in the mud, with signs indicating position and direction, and, in the nonflooded section beyond (just the occasional ponds), the robotic mine carts.
a scenic view of Mount Sentusia, world 13World: 13
Name: Mount Sentusia
Region: Sentus
Theme: volcano
Mount Sentusia is an active volcano with a deep volcanic crater with very steep sides that contains a large, deep lava lake. Occasional high spots poke out of the lava. This is the only world that uses lava. Once high enough to see over the rim of the volcano's crater, the Sentus Mountains are visible out to the edge of visibility.
Region: Musan
The Musan (pronounced "MOO sn") region is a temporate region on the easternmost part of Sentusia Island past the Sentus Mountains and along the coast. It is the easiest detour around the Sentus Mountains for trains that can't handle go through the mountains.
a scenic view of Musan Taiga, world 14World: 14
Name: Musan Taiga
Region: Musan
Theme: taiga
Musan taiga is in the far northern part of the Musan region. Pine trees (usually spruce) dominate the foreground. These continue until the river where more trees are. The river forms a small lake which also has a waterfall that comes from the Sentus Mountains going into. The easternmost part of the Sentus Mountains are beyond. This world is highly unfinished so the screenshot doesn't accurately reflect the true looks of the area.
Region: Nodera
The sparsely populated Nodera region is in the tundra and arctic. This frozen area is filled with snow and ice. Being the northern hemisphere summer, it's bright here and the ice is melting.
a scenic view of Nodera Ice Shelf, world 15World: 15
Name: Nodera Ice Shelf
Region: Nodera
Theme: arctic ocean
Nodera Ice Shelf is in the northeastern corner of the overworld. The massive ice shelf is breaking up from the warmth of the summer Sun causing icebergs to drift along in the ocean. The Sentus Mountains are present far beyond the ice shelf. The water below is dangerous to touch because it's freezing cold. The screenshot shows the icebergs drifting by in front of the ice shelf itself with the Sentus Mountains far beyond.
a scenic view of Nodera Highlands, world 16World: 16
Name: Nodera Highlands
Region: Nodera
Theme: Snowstorm
Nodera Highlands is located on the northernmost part of the Sentus Mountains and overworld. Here, an active snowstorm is going on with blowing snow at 48 mph (77.25 km/h) causing a mere 2,403-foot visibility (732 meters). This visibility is marginally too high for it to be considered a blizzard. Small, occasional roads and a small river are visible below the clouds. The Nodera Mountains, a small, short mountain chain, are visible above the clouds. This is the only world in which you regularly go in and out of the clouds. The screenshot shows the clouds obscuring objects with the snow clearly visible between.
Region: Outer space
Every kid's dream is to visit the dangerous place known as outer space, beyond Earth's atmosphere. Being the year 2073, space scenes make great sense.
a scenic view of Earth Space Base, world 17World: 17
Name: Earth Space Base
Region: Outer space
Theme: Space
Rising above an area near Johannesburg, South Africa via space elevators is the Earth Space Base, a base in space above Earth. It's actually more of an Earth observatory though it also has living quarters. The foreground has an assortment of buildings with occasional bits of text to give directions on where things are, identify the space base and location, and a Platform Masters championship advertisement. An observatory, much like those you find on the ground, is visible at the far end of the space base. The most distant part of the background is Earth itself with Europe, Africa, and Asia visible. Unlike most games with a space theme and the planet visible, Earth actually moves. It's extremely slow and slight, but it's the most distant game object ever seen in a 2D platformer. A few million CU to the right and the difference in position is noticeable. This world has gravity cut about 3/8 that at ground level making springs and jumping much more effective for height. The screenshot shows the observatory and the text banners that identifying the location of the space base via latitude and longitude.
a scenic view of Mars Space Base, world 18World: 18
Name: Mars Space Base
Region: Outer space
Theme: Mars
Mars Space Base is nearly identical to Earth Space base. There are 3 exceptions though. The text banners show a different location and space base ID, Mars is in the background instead of Earth, and gravity is only 1/6 as strong allowing for seriously high jumps. The final boss lurks here too. Are you ready for the big battle? This world is only partially finished so the screenshot doesn't fully accurately reflect the true looks of the area.
Region: varies
Beyond the initial 18 worlds the main story revolves around, there are 2 other worlds that require special circumstances to unlock. How these worlds are unlocked is something you will have to figure out, but when you do unlock them, you'll be in for a serious challenge.
a scenic view of Barugan Islands, world 19World: 19
Name: Barugan Islands
Region: Barugan
Theme: tropical islands
Barugan Islands is located at a point halfway between Air Taxi and Barugan Reef and a bit farther north. The setting is at night. Sailboats, straw huts, regular houses, palm trees, and even a cruise ship are also scattered around the islands. Just think of tropical escape or tropical resort. Since this is a hidden world, the lower area will not be revealed. It's also quite unfinished as well.
a scenic view of Musan Swamp, world 20World: 20
Name: Musan Swamp
Region: Musan
Theme: swamp
This swamp is a cross between Keveran Forest, Lake Keveran, Ronnisa Plains, and Sentus Caverns. Dominating the closest part of the scene are trees, lots of trees. Deciduous trees are frequent in this area as Musan Swamp takes place in the southernmost part of the Musan region. The terrain is quite hilly like Ronnisa Plains and there's plenty of water present like Lake Keveran, only this water is very murky - you can't see what's in the water. Like the Sentus Caverns, there are occasional areas of deep mud. Musan Swamp is the game's ultimate location. Its levels are extremely difficult, making difficulty 2 seem like 6, even though you get the typical amount of time with difficulty 2. The extreme challenge of Musan Swamp is only for the die-hards who love challenge. Accessing Musan Swamp alone is feat in and of itself, let alone completing its levels even at difficulty 0. This world is highly unfinished so the screenshot doesn't accurately reflect the true looks of the area.


3 A sense of scale



All scenery within Platform Masters is realistically to scale, as if Platform Masters really was a purely 3D game. Ever wonder what 200 mph (321.9 km/h) is really like, the kinds of speeds that race car drivers and bullet train riders experience? What about the speed of sound, roughly 762 mph (1226.3 km/h)? Platform Masters will provide this feel. Even distances are realistic. The character, Jeremy Kaplan, is a typical young adult standing 5 feet, 10.4 inches (178.8 centimeters) tall. Move the character next to a traffic light, a building, train cars, or something else you might be familiar with, and the sense of scale matches what you'd see in the real world. Manmade objects in Platform Masters use a different distance measurement unit (the CU, block, and kiloblock, using powers of 2 instead of 10) so the scale isn't entirely like what our stuff is, but the basic ideas are still the same.

You may have seen "vast, gorgeous worlds" on the about page. So, just how vast are they? Most 3D games could only dream of the huge expanse of scenery - typically 524,288 CU deep (16 Kbl, 14.564 miles, 23.438 km) and 2,097,152 CU wide (64 Kbl, 58.254 miles, 93.751 kilometers). Worlds like Keveran Desert and Sentus Mountains have an even greater depth, at 1,398,101 1/3 CU (42 2/3 Kbl, 38.836 miles, 62.501 kilometers). The Sentus Mountains' levels span about 114,688 CU vertically (3 1/2 Kbl, 4.096 miles, 6.592 km; across multiple levels rather than a single level). Keep in mind that this is at a resolution of 1 CU per pixel (in a sense - it actually matches that of the layer's scaling). To put this expanse in perspective, the width of the screen where the foreground action takes place is only 1024 CU. The typical late-game, supersize, wide-spanned level may only be 16,384 CU (0.455 mile, 0.732 kilometer) wide, not even 1% of the width and barely 1% of the depth! Most regular levels only span about 2048 to 8192 CU, significantly smaller (0.1 to 0.4% of the full width).

4 Loading worlds



Loading worlds takes considerably longer than levels. They also only get loaded when the background scenery has to change. Otherwise, it doesn't reload, which greatly decreases the amount of time you'll spend waiting for Platform Masters to load. Some worlds, like Keveran Forest, Carnivalesta, Maglev Train, and Sentus Caverns, have a lot of scenery objects that need to get loaded and also processed for fixed function effects like fog. With potentially as much as 60 MB needing to be loaded and processed, you can expect a noticeable delay in the game play. Even then, with today's hard drives hovering around 100+ MB/s, the wait is but a fraction of a second, longer if the CPU needs to be used a lot to render fog and the like.



Footnotes:
None.