View Full Version : May Entry: Cthulhu Cultist Starship Temple

05-05-2008, 04:06 PM
Let's get the ball rolling! Here is my first WIP of a starport. At the moment I'm just experimenting with shapes and ideas. I have no idea where this is going - but that's the exciting part!

This is already 63kb in size...lord knows how I'm going to do this at the resolution specified and get any sort of detail. I had to turn off the anti-aliasing and turn down the quality of the image to get it within the competition parameters. The scale looks way too large, so this image may be reduced to a corner detail or something of a small part of the final drawing.

### Latest WIP ###

05-05-2008, 05:51 PM
Hi Ravs, do you want to put a WIP tag in and ill start the thumbnails ?

Also - two tips. If your going to stick with block solid color, try saving as PNG and b) if you remove the thin black line it will drop like a stone also.

05-06-2008, 05:09 AM
Thanks for the advice! I'll give both ideas a try tonight. I guess some compressions are better at certain tasks than others. I always thoughts that pngs were bigger than jpegs for some reason!

05-06-2008, 08:01 AM
It depends on the image. Solid blocks of color and PNG would probably win. The very worst thing for all images is random noise followed by thin lines ! If you have a door in an old school map then its better being solid rect than an open box for example. Also, lines that are horizontal and vertical will be much better than ones at an angle. With JPG its a bit more complicated knowing what shapes would compress better as all the compression isl done in frequency space. JPG will have about 16K minimum size even if its all white but PNG would be a few hundred bytes. Also, ensure you save your PNG with specific number of colors 1, 16, or full. If you have < 16 colors then don't save full color as its hugely more expensive.

05-06-2008, 08:33 AM
Thank you Redrobes! This is great advice for techno illiterates like me. I've made a sticky for tips on keeping small file sizes as this is likely to be a huge factor in the competition.

05-19-2008, 06:10 PM
Total change of idea. I've gone for a Cthulhu cultist starship temple. The old jpg / png crushing has not done the map any favours but the idea is one of wrong turns and lurking horror.

I've tried to use the idea of a VTT format to influence the map, so the idea behind this is a an ever increasing sense of danger as the players advance north from the south entrance (the gradient fill going from yellow to orange to red). Then I thought, why not mess with their heads and make some of the paths symmetrical and others not, with lots of bendy corners they can't see around (after you! No, I insist, after you!), alcoves for the GM to hide monsters in and weird patterns and symbols (need more of those) to make them wonder if they are clues of some sort. The colours are very lurid to highlight the madness of it all (far too many desaturated maps on this forum!). That's the idea, but I think the execution requires a lot more work.

### Latest WIP ###

05-19-2008, 09:20 PM
Hats off for originality! Nice job! Very colorful!

Man, I wonder what types of critters are on this thing?

05-20-2008, 03:54 AM
Holy mackerel, what a cool spaceship to go insane in. Nice colours great style, as usual.


05-20-2008, 01:09 PM
Oh yea!! Not only nonfantasy, but Cthulhu to boot! It's crazy I tell you just crazy! ;)

05-20-2008, 01:16 PM
That's really cool. Could also be a spacerock band's touring ship. Funkadelic!

But... But, but, but! I was really looking forward to a straight starport. The serious scifi stuff here is seriously lacking.

I could try something, time permitting, but, given recent experience, it would suck. Hard.

05-20-2008, 03:43 PM
Yeah, well, I'll be wearing beads and singing Peter, Paul and Mary songs next!

05-22-2008, 07:12 PM

### Latest WIP ###

05-22-2008, 09:59 PM
Whoah! What happened?

05-22-2008, 11:18 PM
Adding the noise dramatically reduced the jpeg compression artifacts. Nice job! I think I liked the lighter colors better, though.

05-23-2008, 06:05 AM
It's turned into a muddled pixel soup! I kind of like how the corridor edges are now quite fuzzy. It's got a much darker horror feel now, but it's still pretty awful. Ah well, it was a good exercise in learning how to combine shapes into pleasing forms.

I liked the brighter colours too, but I couldn't rescue them once I applied the texture. I guess I could bring it into photoshop (it's all done in Drawplus, a vector programme) and saturate the colours. I did pick up a good lesson though: Have a definite end result in mind, lest you spend hours fiddling away hoping for happy accidents.

I think that's just about it on the USS Cthulhu!