Mapping Advice and assistance

Bangooie

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Hey guys,

after years I am picking RM back up and I am super excited. Gonna make a game I have made a design document for years ago and I am super hyped to start making the game. I have done some research and have come to the conclusionj that parallax mappingis the superior way to enhance your game graphically. However, it's super time consuming and veyr tedious so it seems.

My question is, is it wise to make the entire game ( Or at least the better part of it.), and parallax map it with awesome overlays afterwards? This way I can design and balance all the map before I finish them up. PMing only seems to be cosmetic from what I have seen now, or is this incorrect? I am using RPG MAKER MV by the way.

Also, if there are people that are interested in helping me out with PMing the game that would be awesome.
 

mlogan

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Whether to parallax map or not is a contested question and really all seems to come down to personal preference. While there are benefits to it, as you've said, it's incredibly time consuming.

I think doing as you said, making maps in the editor and exporting them to add finishing touches can be helpful. I personally find that a well crafted tileset used in the editor is my preference.

You might also consider Yanfly's Doodads plugin which allows for a much more flexible mapping experience in the editor.
 

watermark

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The other thing about parallax mapping is that it may have performance and frame rate issues on lower end computers or mobile devices if you plan to publish on that.

If you are just coming back to rm, I would recommend starting with tilesets first because there's plenty to figure out first before adding the extra layer of complexity imposed by parallax mapping.
 

Wavelength

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Parallax Mapping is great, but in addition to the performance issues it can potentially cause, it's also a hell of a grind. The nicer your Parallax Maps are, the more exponential the effort will become. It sounds like you've never completed a big project before, and any game with PMing is going to be a big project.

So here's my advice: if Parallax Mapping is essential to the core of your game - that is, if the game would be a significantly different (and worse) experience without it - then it's worth doing the PMing from the beginning; for all other games where it's just a matter of PM maps looking much nicer than tiled maps, design the game with tile-mapping first and then start working on the PM maps much later.

Not only will putting off the PM work help you avoid burnout during the first half of your game-making, it also cuts down on the amount of time you'll need to spend reworking a map, when you realize that something about the current layout restricts gameplay or causes a bug.
 

Andar

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1) you always need to design your maps, no matter if you use regular mapping or parallax mapping.
Designing a map means using pen&paper to first think what needs to be on the map and second get a sketch of where each part is to be placed.
If you don't design your maps, the result would be very often a map that is either too big to play on it (the player doesn't want to walk around an eternity) or too cluttered to move on it (the player doesn't want to guess how he has to maneuver from one part of the map to the other unless that is part of a puzzle.

2) regular mapping usually gives you 80% of the quality of parallax mapping for 20% of the work - that is what one artist on this forum told me years ago.
So yes, parallax mapping gives better quality at a cost of much more work - and that came from an artist who knew about how to use Photoshop or GIMP.
If you have no experience with image programs, that ratio would be worse and I strongly suggest only using parallax mapping if you know how to make pictures in an image program.

3) There are alternative to both if you're making your game in RMMV.
One alternative is using the alternative editor TilED with the conforming plugin - this will remove several limits that are in the RM editor.
Second alternative is Yanfly's Doodads, which will allow you to place elements off-grid.
 

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