Friday, 17 February 2012

Behind the Scenes Final Part: Castle of Jumping and Falling

Hai there, Salmaras here to talk through the production process of the Castle of Jumping and Falling, this time I'm here to talk about the last Wing, and the Map's Finale.

Didn't play Castle? Don't know what it is? Find out and download it here on the Minecraft Forums

The Castle Gardens

So there's a reason the Castle Gardens seem a bit mixed in it's content is because the original room was split in four biomes, Desert, Frozen Water, Forest and Mushroom.

The Path splitting them is gone, but you can still see the four of them there, as well as the leaked water that was keeping everything going (The water is there to push you gently back to the start if you get confused.).

Actually scratch that, there is no Mushroom Biome because we realised that it didn't really look right in terms of parkour, so I changed it so that once you got to the tree it was a straight jump to some plains.

I'm happy with how the room turned out, though it is a little confusing to look at in terms of working out where you're going, but maybe that's half the fun.

The Workshop

Ok so, the Workshop is basically my favourite room, because it's the one that actually mixes things up a little in terms of Parkour as well as letting me play with Redstone a little bit. I also noticed that a lot of people just seem to stop and stare at the little minecart that's endlessly looping through a window.

The first jump was a weird one, since there were two sides you could choose but they both opened and closed differently, from experience I can say that for whatever reason the left one is easier, but they're both challenging jumps.

the Emergency Stairs thing was more of an afterthought, I wanted to fit more Parkour in the room whilst at the same time keeping with the mechanical theme, so that was really all I could think off, and hey at least it worked (Except for the one time it didn't, but we never released that version which is good.)

The Blacksmith

The Blacksmith is just an aesthetic room, it exists to give credence to the next room you go in, as well as keep in line with there being three rooms in each wing, since the last bit of Parkour was actually on the next bit.

Interestingly due to my own error, in the first version we released you were able to climb the water to the outside of the map as I'd forgotten to cap it. (The Lava is not capped, but good luck swimming in it.)

The Mine

Making a natural looking Mine isn't easy, and whilst I do think I got the shape and random elements of your typical Minecraft cave down, I did perhaps put a few too many ores lying around in there but hey, that's why they're mining in here.

The Mine is also the greatest illusion of the map, as you descend down the ladder and become surrounded by smooth stone you genuinely feel like you're underground, when in reality the mine is actually higher than some of the other buildings in the map, you just happen to have been slowly going up the whole time.

The Finale and The Golden Room

Originally the Finale ended in the Cobblestone and lava area, a place where you could collect your wool together and then end your time gracefully by falling into the void.

When we decided on the sequel however, I went back to Castle and edited the ending so that you finish where the sequel begins, trapped in a small building staring at a broken bridge and some hills, only difference between the two being the open gate in the sequel so that you can finally continue. The illusion is a convincing one (though not perfect) and creates a sense of connection between the two maps that I'm really happy with.

As for the golden room... well I just wanted to give a nicer ending for those that made the extra effort to hunt down all of the secrets, and my anti-cheat sign seemed to work nicely, though I apologise to anyone who just pulled it out of curiosity.

So that's the Castle of Jumping and Falling for you, come back later and... Oh I almost forgot, see whilst I did the Parkour building on this I didn't do the entirety of construction on my own, so here's a little bit from Lambdafish, who you may know better as my partner for Kingdom of Jumping and Falling.

"I'm actually really overwhelmed by the amount of support we have gotten from Castle of Jumping and Falling, when we started development, I thought it would just be to show we had done something, and then be forgotten about, but it's still here and people love it!

 My involvement in this map is secondary to Salmaras's, as I am a builder rather than a designer (though I have designed a few things). I feel that we work well as a team, and the final product (apparently) shows.

 Me and Salmaras have also worked tirelessly to keep the product alive, after we realised that we had made something worthwhile. You will notice that we are always on the thread, thanking you guys, listening to your feedback and adjusting accordingly, we do ultimately care about the map, and about those who play it.

So the question... what do I think about what we have made? I hope we have made something promising, but that is for the players to say."

Ok so, for real this time that's everything... gee this is a long post. Anyhoo, come back later and you can hear a bit about the Demo we released for Kingdom.
Thanks for reading and f you'd like to hear more from me or say hello, you can find me on Twitter @SeriousSalmaras

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