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Heroes Community > Heroes 7 - Falcon's Last Flight > Thread: Limbic's Town Screens
Thread: Limbic's Town Screens This thread is 50 pages long: 1 2 3 4 5 ... 10 20 30 40 ... 46 47 48 49 50 · «PREV / NEXT»
TDL
TDL


Honorable
Supreme Hero
The weak suffer. I endure.
posted August 21, 2014 10:26 PM

I consider town screens to be a very endearing subject, true to the fanatics of the series, therefore it deserves being discussed openly, in order for the developers to make note of it. Besides, we know that such discussions warrant attention from the insiders and they will rightfully convey what is necessary to the cause.

That said, there are three key points people make notice of:

town planning

architecture & look

coherence

Therefore, if we are to make a suggestion on how the town screen should look, we are to look at a combination of all these features. More to follow.


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blob2
blob2


Undefeatable Hero
Blob-Ohmos the Second
posted August 21, 2014 10:54 PM
Edited by blob2 at 22:56, 21 Aug 2014.

Town screens are one of the most characteristic and unique features of the series. There have been many strategic fantasy games, yet almost none have seen such a thing as interactive, visual representations of what you've actually built in your base. Usually there are some icons, pop-up lists of buildings etc. Only Disciples series comes to mind, but in that games town screens are more of a eye-candy, than actual base of operations like in Heroes. And don't forget all those memorable pieces of music...

So yes, townscreens should be treated with utmost care!

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yogi
yogi


Promising
Famous Hero
of picnics
posted August 21, 2014 11:05 PM

Great posts Galaad, Dark-Whisperer, unicornblood, alcibiades, Kivo, and TDL; thank you!, and everyone else too, even PROJ: no great discussion lacks a good debate, and this is a very deserving topic!  Constructive ideas are exactly what I was looking for with the OP.  What I will do is edit every ones suggestions into a list at the top of the OP, so they are easy to find and to help direct the thread.
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Miru
Miru


Supreme Hero
A leaf in the river of time
posted August 22, 2014 12:01 AM

I think the main problem here is a lack of a cartoon, or often erased black-and-white presketch to draft ideas. The buildings don't have a flow to them and the scale is inconsistent, it looks like he could have just painted left to right across several days rather than get a final idea before starting. I don't mind if an orc town looks scattered and with no apparent plan or layout, but the academy town should have a clear plan, and the sylvan town I would see incorporated well together and with the landscape as a natural beauty. This more looks like an area was charted out and then buildings were dropped in, one per unit, none for anything else. I loved in Heroes 5 how the towns had so many buildings that were just part of the town hall.
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blizzardboy
blizzardboy


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
Nerf Herder
posted August 22, 2014 02:22 AM
Edited by blizzardboy at 02:31, 22 Aug 2014.

The screens look better than H6 and worse than H5, which would be an extremely difficult thing to beat. H5 is the crowning champion of excellent townscreens + musical scores.

Academy looks decent since one would expect a big element of surreality in a wizard town, but the Haven town kind of looks like the pet project of a trillionaire rather than an actual city.

Sanctuary is my favorite among them, except I would prefer the statue - while cool looking - to be a mystical apparition rather than a mountain-sized statue just kind of chilling out. I like the orange to blue contrast between the bottom and the sky.
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xerox
xerox


Promising
Undefeatable Hero
posted August 22, 2014 02:38 AM
Edited by xerox at 02:40, 22 Aug 2014.

I have two main complaints:

1. The Walls

This was a problem in H6 screens too. That the town screen perspective is from outside of the wall. That really does hurt immersion. Just look at this video of the Sanctuary screen, and its much more immersive before the wall is built: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mh5S-rqzLoY

Solution: Show walls in the background of the town screen.

2. No Houses

Again, a problem that was also in H6. There are no common houses that expand as you upgrade your Town Hall building. It makes the towns feel more like stiff military bases than, well, towns.

Solution: Return to the H1-H5 way hof adding houses as you upgrade your town hall.
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alcibiades
alcibiades


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
of Gold Dragons
posted August 22, 2014 07:48 AM

blizzardboy said:
The screens look better than H6 and worse than H5, which would be an extremely difficult thing to beat. H5 is the crowning champion of excellent townscreens + musical scores.

Academy looks decent since one would expect a big element of surreality in a wizard town, but the Haven town kind of looks like the pet project of a trillionaire rather than an actual city.

Sanctuary is my favorite among them, except I would prefer the statue - while cool looking - to be a mystical apparition rather than a mountain-sized statue just kind of chilling out. I like the orange to blue contrast between the bottom and the sky.

Which screens are you refering to here ... the Heroes 7 one(s) or the Heroes online ones?

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Wellplay
Wellplay


Famous Hero
Poland Stronk
posted August 22, 2014 09:20 AM
Edited by Wellplay at 09:21, 22 Aug 2014.

I agree with Xerox solution about town hall. But also upgrading your castle to get walls, should be back instead of fortifications which breaks immersion in 2d TS as we seen in Heroes 6.

PS.
2nd day lurker here

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MattII
MattII


Legendary Hero
posted August 22, 2014 09:40 AM
Edited by MattII at 11:46, 22 Aug 2014.

xerox said:
Solution: Return to the H1-H5 way hof adding houses as you upgrade your town hall.
You mean H3-H5 right? H1 and H2 had no houses either.

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Avonu
Avonu


Responsible
Supreme Hero
Embracing light and darkness
posted August 22, 2014 09:54 AM
Edited by Avonu at 09:56, 22 Aug 2014.

But HoMM1 has creatures outside buildings, seagull in harbour and some other random people here and there (guard at Thief Guild), so towns seem to have more life then these in H3-7.
In HoMM2 you have also other not dwelling buildings like: well, statue, tavern, thief guild, orchand/dungeon/library/watterfall, etc. That's why IMO H2 towns also seem to have more life in them - you have buildings which are not just dwellings or castle/town hall or teleport. H6 seems very poor compared to them.
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Maurice
Maurice

Hero of Order
Part of the furniture
posted August 22, 2014 11:25 AM bonus applied by alcibiades on 22 Aug 2014.
Edited by Maurice at 11:34, 22 Aug 2014.

PROJ said:
Don't be so condescending.


Funny, but the only one I find condescending in this topic is you, with your posts. As a matter of fact, of the 7 posts you've made so far since you registered, 5 have been in this topic. You say that only a chef can properly judge a meal, but in the same stretch, you're just a newcomer on these forums, already criticizing the discussions here. Talk about double standards.

So, respectfully, I can only say one thing: shut up, if you have nothing better to add than what you have done so far.

Now, for the matter at hand: townscreens.

Personally, townscreens have been an important aspect for me in any Heroes games. While I consider those in Heroes 4 and 6 to lack much integration (they're relatively evenly spaced out across the screen), overall they provide immersion. They make me "feel" what the faction in question is about. It connects with the faction line up and the concept behind who they are and why they do what they do. It fleshes out their identity.

Music is one part of that (Romero & King have composed numerous memorable tunes), but an interactive and graphically appealing town screen is equally important there. From photography, I know that a 'landscape' photo looks best when it has three layers: you have elements in the foreground, you have elements in the background and the third layer is somewhere in between. Each layer gradually changes into the neighbors to make a smooth transition and yet, have their own purpose in the image.

If we compare the Heroes 3 townscreens with those of Heroes 7 as we have seen so far, we can also identify these layers, but the contents of each are different.

Let's take the Haven town as an example. For the front layer, Heroes 3 shows us the Town Hall, the Blacksmith and the Market. For practical purposes, the Jousting Range, the Monastary and Mage Guild also belong to this layer. The second layer has most of the creature dwellings (on the mountainous ridge) on the left and the Fort on the right. The background layer has the remaining elements, which are composed of the Grail structure and the Portal of Glory and in a lesser way, also the mountain range in the background. It's this background which also sets part of the atmosphere of a town and is therefore a very important part of the townscreen, even if it's in the background layer and non-interactable.

When looking at the Heroes 7 equivalent, we have a mostly empty front layer. Perhaps the walls and the buildings to the right can be considered front layer, but it's rather empty. Then a lot of elements have been crammed into the second layer, which is still rather empty on the left side, further reducing the individual building size. The third layer is again mostly empty, featuring perhaps the Grail structure and castle.

This difference creates a feeling of distance in its own right and leaves an immense amount of open space at the same time, especially since the front layer should be the most dominant one of the three layers that exist within such a wide-scale picture. In short, the layout of the screen is just not the most efficient. Now, I rightfully admit that using every spot on the screen may also give the feeling of a haphazardly thrown together jumble, something that I feel rather strongly with Fortress of Heroes 3. It's a matter of artistic creativity to get this feeling of cohesion and integration just right. But using the layers - especially the front layer - is crucial to get a balanced and proper "feel" for a town.

What Heroes 3, Heroes 4 and Heroes 5 did right was that the town was expanding with increasing Town Hall level, at least on the townscreen itself. Non-interactive buildings appeared to put some extra flesh on the bones as it was growing, to give the impression that the town itself was not only about the buildings you could build - rather, that those buildings were part of a larger whole, thereby giving the feeling of a real town instead of just a military base which stands apart from the common people that populate the world. This is an aspect of immersion.

What Heroes 3 also did right was that the Walls upgrades strictly pertained to the Fort, instead of to the town as a whole. In Heroes 5, the actual townsize increased, with the later Walls forming an extra ring around the town, with its own buildings caught between the various walls inside the town. The main problem with ever increasing walls around the town as a whole like was done in Heroes 5 is that they also become larger with each next ring. While such may have been customary in reallife medieval constructions, it was also common for the population to withdraw behind the walls of a nearby Fort or Keep in times of war, for protection. At least for the villages and towns that had such a construction. Within a townscreen, such extra rings take up a relatively excessive amount of space relative to other structures, so I feel that they should restrict the Walls in a townscreen to just the central Fort. As a matter of fact, the Fort has always been a prerequisite for Walls (and is usually considered the first Wall).

Lastly, interactivity with the buildings (for which it matters, of course ) also creates immersion. It connects the process of recruiting troops, checking spells or using the marketplace to the town as you see it in front of you. Buttons don't make that link. I don't mean to say that buttons should be a no-go and that building interaction should be the only way; both systems could be implemented and actually reinforce eachother. Consider for instance how the Fort in Heroes 3 gave access to a recruitment window for all creatures within that town.

The thing I am omitting here is the building style, which should obviously not only be consistent across the particular faction, but also be consistent with the creatures that dwell there.

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Avirosb
Avirosb


Promising
Legendary Hero
No longer on vacation
posted August 22, 2014 11:36 AM

You ought to earn a quality point for that post, Maurice.

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Storm-Giant
Storm-Giant


Responsible
Undefeatable Hero
On the Other Side!
posted August 22, 2014 11:51 AM

Avirosb said:
You ought to earn a quality point for that post, Maurice.

Hear, hear!
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MattII
MattII


Legendary Hero
posted August 22, 2014 11:52 AM

Avonu said:
In HoMM2 you have also other not dwelling buildings like: well, statue, tavern, thief guild, orchand/dungeon/library/watterfall, etc. That's why IMO H2 towns also seem to have more life in them - you have buildings which are not just dwellings or castle/town hall or teleport.
Uh, those apply to any game, except maybe H6 (lack of a MG, plus a reduction in special buildings).

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PhoenixMK
PhoenixMK


Hired Hero
Burn baby, BURN!!!
posted August 22, 2014 02:13 PM
Edited by PhoenixMK at 14:17, 22 Aug 2014.

It's a new HoMM game

So many demands...we all have demands and developers can not meet all our desires. The fact is, not everyone can be satisfied at the end.

I do not like comments like: I will not buy Heroes VII if there aren't TS like this or if they are not in 3D, there aren't Griffins in Haven so H7 sucks from now on, I want a H3 remake Ubis*** etc... Limbic wants the best and most popular elements from previous Heroes titles to be included in the upcoming game and that's why they seek help from us, the fans of HoMM. Heroes VII will be a mix of the previous titles with our help, we are here to contribute for a better game.

As for me, I don't need fancy graphics, 3D TS or 8 factions at start. I will play the game I love because it's brand new HoMM game no matter how bad the final product will come out. The TS aren't bad but there is a place for improvement, this is not the final product after all.  

Let's help the developers with constructive ideas and criticism not with crying about everything new and different from classical HoMM games. Classic games like Heroes 3 do not fade but newer games fade very quickly because players boycott new releases that aren't similar to the previous ones. All because of nostalgia. Be happy that the franchise is still evolving, that's all that matters.

In addition to the already proven and successful features from the past games we need something new, something innovative that will leave a mark and return HoMM to the top again. Let's not judge prematurely.
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Avirosb
Avirosb


Promising
Legendary Hero
No longer on vacation
posted August 22, 2014 02:20 PM
Edited by Avirosb at 14:20, 22 Aug 2014.

PhoenixMK said:
I do not like comments like: I will not buy Heroes VII if there aren't TS like this or if they are not in 3D, there aren't Griffins in Haven so H7 sucks from now on, I want a H3 remake Ubis*** etc...
Then why bring them up? One single nitpick is usually not enough to make a person refrain from buying a game.
Thing is, they tend to add up rapidly as we get closer to release date.
Then come the bug-testing and online issues.

Quote:
All because of nostalgia.
You can't blame people for longing for a time when we used to get much better games.

Quote:
Support Heroes VII, let's not judge prematurely. That's what a true fan of HoMM must do.
Offering blind support time and time again is never something a fan should aspire to do.

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PROJ
PROJ


Known Hero
posted August 22, 2014 02:28 PM
Edited by PROJ at 14:30, 22 Aug 2014.

Quote:
You say that only a chef can properly judge a meal, but in the same stretch, you're just a newcomer on these forums, already criticizing the discussions here. Talk about double standards.

So, respectfully, I can only say one thing: shut up, if you have nothing better to add than what you have done so far.

Oh please.  What you said makes logically no sense; I'm sorry you're not intelligent enough to see that (and I'm not saying that "respectfully").  I've lurked for quite a while and felt the impetus to post because this topic has gotten so out of hand that it's just a cheap excuse to lazily criticize the devs.

Want to know why I'm not commenting in the other threads?  It's because there's actual useful discussion going on in them.  This topic has been mostly an echo chamber of hot air for whiners to complain with no real substance.  If you can't see that, you're blind.

That being said, the discussion here has gotten better, but I'm not going to sit around and be criticized by morons for bringing up valid points about the tone of the discussion and its non-constructiveness.

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PROJ
PROJ


Known Hero
posted August 22, 2014 02:38 PM
Edited by alcibiades at 17:13, 22 Aug 2014.

I've said the most useful thing in the entire thread: if you want to actual have a reasonable effect on how the townscreens look, create some actual examples.  Talking about artwork is not terribly constructive and devs are less likely to take it seriously than if you provide concrete examples or ideas.  It also shows you have actual knowledge of art and aren't just some armchair critic.

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verriker
verriker


Honorable
Legendary Hero
We don't need another 'eroes
posted August 22, 2014 02:41 PM

PhoenixMK said:
Classic games like Heroes 3 do not fade but newer games fade very quickly because players boycott new releases that aren't similar to the previous ones. All because of nostalgia.


I don't know about that
I think the new releases fade very quickly on account of being incompetently-designed bugfests with poor replay value

like, what is with these silly arguments that criticism of Ubisoft's games comes down to nostalgia

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kayna
kayna


Supreme Hero
posted August 22, 2014 02:50 PM
Edited by kayna at 14:50, 22 Aug 2014.

verriker said:


like, what is with these silly arguments that criticism of Ubisoft's games comes down to nostalgia


Because everyone says that in every game. Heroes 3 was better than all others! Diablo 2 was better than 3! ... well, maybe they re right in that regard. Wrong example!

*cough*

Starcraft 1 was better! Elder scrolls 3 was better! Fallout 2 was better! etc etc.

In Heroes 3's example, my guess is that most people played hot seats, and they ate pizza with their buddies while doing so. Now, when you play H5, its online, in your home, alone or with a baby crying nearby or something, so clearly it's not as fun.

It's hard to analyze objectively an old memory from FIFTEEN years ago.

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