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Thread: Castlevania-style designs?

  1. #1

    Post Castlevania-style designs?

    I'm looking for a fully-mapped castle reminiscent of those in the Castlevania series of video games, yet with a functional layout. My intent is to build a 3D computer model, add some animation and scripting features to make it a sort of haunted house, and then post it for people to enjoy free of charge.

    Originally, I'd planned on adapting Neuschwanstein for this task, and have thus far succeeded in modeling most of the exterior and interior (though completely undecorated). Unfortunately, the unavailability of detailed schematics has caused my work on that project to hit a glass ceiling. The only other "real" castles I've found that possess the exaggerated fantasy style I'm after are those of Disney, but they don't have functional interiors.

    Lately, I've taken to searching old D&D books, but so far nothing has jumped out at me as being "just right". If anyone here knows of potentially-suitable designs, whether posted here, someplace else, or in a book, I'd appreciate hearing about them. Thank you.

  2. #2
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    Disney castle does have a working interior...I've had breakfast in it (took my nieces there last summer and we had "Breakfast with the Princesses" in a restaurant on like the third floor). There is an elevator and stairs plus a suite of rooms that goes for like $10,000 a night that I know of and since I saw no food being brought in I assume there to be a kitchen somewhere underneath (I know that there is a labyrinth of tunnels under the whole park so that the workers can move around without being seen). As far as Neuschwanstein goes, I think I might have some floor-plans of it in a book at work...I'll post em up for ya tomorrow if I can find it.
    If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
    -J. Robert Oppenheimer (father of the atom bomb) alluding to The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 11, Verse 32)


    My Maps ~ My Brushes ~ My Tutorials ~ My Challenge Maps

  3. #3

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    Neuschwanstein is great, of course, but there really are several French and German castles at least as heavy stylized.

    Anyway, the floorplan's at Neuschwanstein's official webpage seem like a very good start; all the rooms, visible supports and corridors are shown for several of the floors:

    http://www.neuschwanstein.de/englisch/palace/tour.htm (plus links to photos of each area)

    In my own research for freelance gigs (on other castles), I've found that simply contacting the castle's owners can net you a much more detailed floorplan just for the asking ... often the pamphlets they distribute on-site include furnishings, room-by-room histories, and so on. I'd recommend dropping them a line; it can't hurt.

    S. John Ross Ghalev
    Who Dat? Games Fonts Uresia

  4. #4

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    I didn't want to go into too much detail in my first post about my failed plan-finding experiences, but now that you brought it up...

    Neuschwanstein: I think I have a copy of just about every high-res map and photo out there. The plans shown on the castle's official website are but tiny versions of the large scans I already got from a book; yet they're incomplete. When I e-mailed the official site to ask about plans, I was basically told that they're a state secret!

    Disney: I've never been through the inner workings of the Disney castles, but I've done my fair share of Internet research on them. Yes, I believe there's a restaurant and a small "princess" suite in Cinderella's Castle, but I don't think there's anything anacronistically-functional behind the scenes. Simply put, what you described is pretty much all they can squeeze into the place.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjj1976 View Post
    Neuschwanstein: I think I have a copy of just about every high-res map and photo out there. The plans shown on the castle's official website are but tiny versions of the large scans I already got from a book; yet they're incomplete. When I e-mailed the official site to ask about plans, I was basically told that they're a state secret!
    Heh. I've run into similar hurdles, but I repeat my previous advice: drop them a line. A real one. You may be shocked at the difference

    S. John Ross Ghalev
    Who Dat? Games Fonts Uresia

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghalev View Post
    Heh. I've run into similar hurdles, but I repeat my previous advice: drop them a line. A real one. You may be shocked at the difference
    I suppose paying overseas postage to deliver an actual letter might provide an air of seriousness that e-mail wouldn't. On the other hand, my concern is that repeating my inquiry would only irritate them.

    Something else I discovered recently is that, according to the June 1999 edition of the In-Form-Z newsletter, Eric Ethier and/or DYAD Digital Studios worked on an exterior and interior model of Neuschwanstein for a Puzz-3D computer game. However, the folks at DYAD's old number in Quebec had never heard of that company, and the only Quebecan(?) Eric Ethier that I could find on the Internet was via Facebook, and he has yet to reply. Nor do I know the extent of the interior design used in the game; it might be just a few rooms.

    On top of all that, I'm not sure Neuschwanstein has what it takes to be a good fantasy/horror castle. Strangely enough, Sleeping Beauty's Castle in Disneyland (which is heavily based on Neuschwanstein) looked surprisingly spooky when illuminated from below with purple lights. I think the desired effect comes from the layout being condensed so.

    I think Sleeping Beauty's Castle is probably the closest look I've found to what I want. Unfortunately, it's rather small, and the forced perspective inherent in the design makes it hard to re-scale and/or re-proportion without ruining the look of the thing.

    On the other hand, Cincerella's Castle (Florida), also looks suitably spooky in either purple or green lighting. Plus, it's bigger and has a more edgy look to it. The only thing that doesn't fit with the Castlevania theme I have in mind are those little pointy bits all over the big tower's roof (no idea what they're called), and some of the column-work looks a bit too cathedral-like to be the home of a vampire.

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    Not sure if this is a huge help or not but the History channel has a series called "Lost Worlds"...one of the episodes was on Dracula/Transylvania. They recreate Castle Dracula at the end, so if you happen to see it on the tv guide then give it a watch. I guess you could always order the $20 DVD of it. In the end, the castle doesn't really look all that spooky though. The spookiness is all a fabrication of our imaginations and Hollywood set designers...plus things always look spookier at night or in fog. The best inspiration I get for spookiness usually comes from video games and paintings so ya might want to check out some of those online print shop places like Deck the Walls and Art.com.
    If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
    -J. Robert Oppenheimer (father of the atom bomb) alluding to The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 11, Verse 32)


    My Maps ~ My Brushes ~ My Tutorials ~ My Challenge Maps

  8. #8

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    Speaking of Hollywood and paintings, here's something I just recently found again: Castle Dracula by Brenton Cottman. I'm not sure what those parts sticking out of the tower are supposed to be (perhaps construction cranes?), but at least he based it on the same style of reference materials I like. Unfortunately, it's just a hodge podge of castle images, not a real floor plan.

    http://features.cgsociety.org/story_...?story_id=2803

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjj1976 View Post
    I suppose paying overseas postage to deliver an actual letter might provide an air of seriousness that e-mail wouldn't.
    Yeah, definitely (some businesslike stationery helps, too), and another facet of it is that, in general, the guy (or gal) who answers emails sent to a site's public e-mail address is often a completely different person than whomever might ultimately be handed a physical letter for consideration (the same goes for people who answer phone calls attached to a public phone number). A letter is much more likely to land on the desk of the specific person who could handle your request (it's old-fashioned but true: physical letters are still taken much more seriously than emails, an effect magnified, however unfairly, by how "digital" the site's daily operations are). Honest and for true, I'm not just guessing: I've found this to be true in at least two-thirds of my own research requests, whether for modern restaurant/hotel layouts or for detailed plans of Russian monasteries.

    S. John Ross Ghalev
    Who Dat? Games Fonts Uresia

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