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Author Topic: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)  (Read 4113 times)

Razieldemon

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Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« on: December 08, 2019, 03:22:41 pm »
Alot is being poured into this project at this point, and still more to come. I redressed this topic here to get a better sense of what is to come.

(Edit December 12th, 2019)

There was discussion on whether or not to proceed in Unity or Godot. Unity wins because of better documentation and it is more fluid between designers.

The project is called "Dracula X: Extended Overture" as its working title. It is not currently affiliated with Esco but I am open to a working relationship. His project is much further along and I am not sure how closely our vision is. He is also far more experienced.

I had an old document detailing what the project was meant to be years ago, but now my interest has returned.

Here is the intention

-A Modified Castle 1 Map
-Item Relocations, redressing the level up system, methods of acquiring certain abilities changing etc
-"Reminisce of Rondo" retelling in segments with its own Castle Map (fully connected) and capable to be explored by all characters (at a later time in the game.)
-Maria remade combining and altering her various skills, her adventure is exploration bound as are each characters with different abilities being found.
-Unified leveling system for all 3 characters.
-Entirely altered Inverted Castle layout.
-7 never before seen bosses (approximately 140 new frames of animation thus far.)
-New Game Plus. (Chronological Playing, disable/enable cutscenes, all relics and acquired equipment) Lv1 start
-CVIII Style Switching replete with co-op puzzles
-New Equipment and Relics
-Altered Familiar Behaviour
-DXX Bosses (some) and other legacy sprites
-Reworked Saturn Sprites, revision of the Prison and Living Gardens (inspiration and resources only.)
-Sprite skins
-16:9 layout redrawing the visually available screen as opposed to shrinking it.
-Never before played 3rd Castle, "The Ruins of Castle Dracula." An epilogue to the good ending of SotN.

There is a bit of the horse before the carriage going on here. I began spriting a couple years ago in hopes of heavily modifying Akumakou Dracula X: Gekka no Yasabou for the Saturn. But that was a pipe dream. The level of work to just make that as good as it can be will likely be as challenging as starting from scratch. It is just too big of an undertaking.

WHAT IS DONE:

4 of 7 Bosses are sprited and tested for animation errors. I love image editing and these were really beautiful, the other three will take more time.

Trevor, Sypha and Grant remade. Each are featured as separate enemies. The zombie characters are still present as well but making that work might be harder on a story design basis.

Castle 1 map parsed together (top BG layer only)each on separate layers to be upgraded with Saturn color values. (btw, an aside, the characters and enemies will not be pulled from Saturn whatsoever. A couple of unique effects might be but... the scaling is just off and I don't see a value in it.)

LOTS OF WORK TO START

I have dabbled in Unity, worked alongside other programmers more familiar with it on their own personal projects, but primarily I have done design and story work. I will have to get more accustomed to it and will be actively seeking help (and offering it as well.) But in the meantime, as this is my baby, it will be on to playing in a test room and getting down hitboxes, attack patterns and movement behavior with Richter and Alucard to start.

This is just a mock up of an image I am working with. Original all black lettering was produced in 2160p and done with stroke paths etc to make it as sharp as possible. Definitely needs work but it has started.

« Last Edit: December 12, 2019, 11:10:57 pm by Razieldemon »

pleasejust

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Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2019, 04:52:15 pm »
He is a visionary. But I don't want to see a C&D and that is exactly what I worry about on Esco's project.

cralso

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2019, 05:06:11 pm »
That "sotn hacked" project by esco is good, but I don't like much the idea of use Unity :(
I think could be better if made in an real 2D engine, unafortunately with Unity is 2D simulated within a 3D space.
You have all 3D posibilities yeah.. but at same time is waste of resources and a dissonance in the symphony, you know a 3D game wich looks 2D, at least from technical perspective.

However I understand that at present it is a very normal thing, but well is just my view point.

I would like more a SOTN Remake in Godot by example :P

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2019, 05:35:16 pm »
whats the concern in running a 2D plane on a 3D layer?

Ive never heard of godot.

Reason I considered unity is the 3D effects are used more liberally than it looks on the surface many of the effects subtly use the 3D elements. Stuff like fireballs etc actually tilt. You just arent aware of it mostly because everything was running 240p

cralso

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2019, 12:41:52 am »
Quote from: Razieldemon
Stuff like fireballs etc actually tilt. You just arent aware of it mostly because everything was running 240p
I'm sorry I'm not sure I understand this well.

Godot is probably the best free / open source Unity alternative, and have some advantages, specially for 2D games I think.
In first instance I think the two more resaltable point are:
Real 2D workspace, also we can use 3D elements from 3D workspace in the 2D space, but are two different things than an "Pseudo 2D game"

Unity is an C# software, well C/C++ and C#, but C# almost things probably
Godot is an C/C++ software
although debatable, probably Godot by that is more resources efficient than Unity, +2D real, x2 efficient for 2D games at the very least.

Why do I insist so much on real 2D space?
Castlevania Symphony of the Night IS a real 2D game, a really good one, not a 3D one.

However, I understand that Unity has more resources, documentation, etc, but I think for 2D games haven't much sense really :(

Some interest links:
https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/reasons-godot-engine-game-development/
https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16674933
https://github.com/GDQuest/godot-platformer-2d

A metroidvania in Godot
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-Smc7p7Zhk

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2019, 09:45:40 pm »
After some time looking over Godot I might give it a shot. For what I want to do I think its very possible that it could work.

nesrocks

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2019, 07:39:54 am »
Isn't the very own Playstation something that runs 2D using 3D polygons?
Many succesful 2D games are currently made in Unity. I do prefer simpler, 2D engines for 2D games (I'm currently developing a game in GameMaker 2 and I recommend it), but the thing is: SoTN has several polygonal shaded and even 3D effects and objects that would require some sort of 3D engine to work.

The thing that bothers me the most though about this idea is that this game is incredibly complex. If you want to recreate the ENTIRE game by yourself you're talking about years of development.

https://youtu.be/xK2GvbzMM9Y?t=78

Even the door for transitioning between screens is 3D.

For sprites, many are already ripped. I doubt it's all of them but it's enough for you to start getting your hands dirty and get a feel of how much work this is https://www.spriters-resource.com/playstation/cvsotn/
« Last Edit: December 10, 2019, 07:58:05 am by nesrocks »

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2019, 11:05:17 am »
I agree that this isn't something that would be a quick project.

There is one example where the entire sprite sheet has been ripped, but it isn't on spriters resource and is being used in the other project mentioned.

And the 3D elements are the bigger concern for sure. I thought maybe the bookshelf,level doors and the like wouldn't be too challenging to make convincing. But then I thought about it and realized he sword familiar and save room would be close to impossible without 3D integration. There are other objects as well such as the clocktower in the background of the staircase leading to Dracula's keep.

Not to mention that something like this, to do it right, will take hundreds of unique sprites, an undertaking I have been at for a solid month. And they can't just look like they kinda work... they have to fit right in as if they always belonged there.

As much as Godot looks user friendly and going to make the process faster and more demanding, I think Unity is going to hae to be the home for the project.

cralso

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2019, 11:18:04 am »
Quote from: Razieldemon
After some time looking over Godot I might give it a shot. For what I want to do I think its very possible that it could work.
I'm glad listen, I think sometimes it may come to seem that I'm trying to impose my opinion, I'm just commenting owhat I don't likes in some cases.
And well if someone will make a new work with this game I think better if different concept, no?
For Unity concept/work the esco have much time on this :P

Anyway let me how you are progressing in your work :)

Quote from: nesrocks
Isn't the very own Playstation something that runs 2D using 3D polygons?
Nope, that is Nintendo 64 :P

Quote from: nesrocks
Many succesful 2D games are currently made in Unity.
Yes, that is, unfortunately, true.
It's fashion, bad in my opinion.

But luckily at the same time there are successful 2D games in 2D engines, most in in GameMaker indeed.

I can't think in Undertale with a Unity in the background, not the original one, but a 3D one can be interesing indeed :P
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M07hqeMGOpQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6cMjg06QwY

Quote from: nesrocks
but the thing is: SoTN has several polygonal shaded and even 3D effects and objects that would require some sort of 3D engine to work.
Is interesting know about this, although I think the most probably almost (if not all) it's 2D making 3D effects.

The game is full of effects/animations + using 3D elements sounds like a problem for the console, but who knows...

On the other hand, for me it's part of the charm of the game, pure and hard 2D surprising us :)

But yeah, 2D engine for 2D games I think is better, I said Godot because I think it might be the most appropriate alternative to Unity, at least for 2D with 3D posibilities, and no only 3D with Psudo 2D, but there are many other alternatives for 2D development ofcourse, like the popular GameMaker, but most are 2D only or 3D only, or paid, etc :P

Finally to explain my feeling, what I feel when a 2D game has 3D as an engine is something like this
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8h07BeF0Ss
---
Edit
Quote from: Razieldemon
As much as Godot looks user friendly and going to make the process faster and more demanding, I think Unity is going to hae to be the home for the project.
Heeh, I understand, well is ok, anyway I would like know what is the difference with The Esco idea?

As far as I know and as far as I can see, The Esco is not only a 'original remake' ie, a "PSX to PC" native PORT :p
This will have the "original" game + new movements, new zones, new all :P
Which looks good, but no good for those who just want to enjoy the original game on pc, with just minimal improvements like translations, bug fixes, etc.

gadesx

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2019, 12:58:31 pm »
Against c&d.
1st step. Make the fangame.
2nd step. Share the finished game like made by a random russian guy.

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2019, 01:09:51 pm »
Is interesting know about this, although I think the most probably almost (if not all) it's 2D making 3D effects.

The game is full of effects/animations + using 3D elements sounds like a problem for the console, but who knows...

On the other hand, for me it's part of the charm of the game, pure and hard 2D surprising us :)

But yeah, 2D engine for 2D games I think is better, I said Godot because I think it might be the most appropriate alternative to Unity, at least for 2D with 3D posibilities, and no only 3D with Psudo 2D, but there are many other alternatives for 2D development ofcourse, like the popular GameMaker, but most are 2D only or 3D only, or paid, etc :P

No they are 3D effects.

SotN has 2D layers. But many effects are creatively using 2D sprites on thin 3D layers.

Many of the fireballs for example are polygonal. And they distort as they continue along a path so as to look like convincing 2D effects.

bookcases, ectomorphs, mist form, doors, sword brothers are all 3D objects.

To your point alot of these can be replicated in sprite form but some really just can't.

I haven't fully given up on godot because even if a similar imppl lementation to unity exists for 3D using 2D planing, its ease of use might make it worth it.

As another poster mentioned this is a years long project no matter how I slice it. Even shaving 25% off development time is enormous taking something that will take 5 years down to 4 years is a big deal.

Im going to hop on Godot's community to see if they can maybe ellaborate on this a little easier.

Unity and Unreal are practically necessity for nearly all projects right now that go into big development. But I can't sell this so the lack of console support might well not matter.

Also? Im not doing a faithful 1:1 remake. It's going to be close... but there are a number of elements that will be modified. Most of Alucard's behavior will be the same, primarily the environments will be as well. There are a couple animations I'd like to add that are present but not as polished as the rest of the game.

The courtyard from the gate entry at the beginning is longer, a 6 frame animation transparency layer is added to the picture frames in the unlit hall at the beginning... the candles "pop in" for the opening dark hallway when it gets relit, minor deviations to castle layout. A fully redesigned Richter sprite for all 142 frames of animation (not the saturn one) and a revamped combat system for him and  unique castle layout for him and Maria.

The map for the two alternative characters have been laid out.

Unused Rondo bosses and some Aria bosses are planned and I even created sprite sheets from scratch for two important Lament of Innocence characters and four unique bosses.

That work is already done (sprite sheets etc.) Thry will go through a fine tuning process.

In addition to the castle and inverted castle, there is 'The Ruins of Castle Dracula' which is where primarily the new content exists. It reuses alot of assets but there are plenty of new ones, and this is where the Hanging Gardens and Cursed Prison have been relocated to. These combine a chronos gate gimick to be able to move between the three.

Both of the zones mentioned are mostly original. 5 new enemy sprites exist and the saturn only ones are heavily modifed.

The famously deleted demon maria battle is also featured as one of two special bosses previously unseen.

December 10, 2019, 01:11:09 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
Against c&d.
1st step. Make the fangame.
2nd step. Share the finished game like made by a random russian guy.

Exactly.

cralso

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2019, 09:01:05 pm »
Haha a very very interesting article about Castlevania SOTN and how works really
http://www.vgmuseum.com/mrp/cv-sotn/documents/nocturne-port.htm
So... Yes, the game is 2D with a custom "3D engine" in the background
What an irony for me :p and although I thing the consoles are another story, leaves me with something to think about :)

Anyway let me know what they tell you in the Godot community, can be interesting know :)
And well, the same, if  you choose Godot, Unity, Cry Engine, whatever, I hope we see something good anyway :)

---
Now, sorry for all the offtopic, about your main question, did you something about that?
From what I see all the graphics have been extracted from the game by several people already, however normally are included with an "ripped by.." blabla
and are probably extracted by means of image capture? ie not readding and extract the files directly from game files, to get ALL and original files.

Well i don't know really, it's just my speculations.

It would be nice to have a tool that would allow you to do that, but in the meantime could you extract the graphics by hand? with some tile editor?

Although you'd be wasting considerable time, and doing the same thing that's been done so far :P

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #13 on: December 11, 2019, 11:42:07 pm »
Well its the color accuracy im concerned with.

Spriters resource is the one most commonly drawn from. SotN uses alot of transparencies. Most are locked at 50% but there are a couple exceptions I believe.

Godot is looking very promising. Considering what the project requires it looks like a massive win. I wonf know until I play around some.

I need to figure out how to extract the image data from disc/bin/iso and color palettes.

I might find out that 90% of what's out there already is perfectly good. I might just end up doing that with most of the backgrounds but for characters it isn't really an option.

pleasejust

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #14 on: December 12, 2019, 04:22:22 pm »
I love me some more Castlevania. Just curious, so you're just doing this because you're afraid of a c&d from Esco's project? Is there anything new you're bringing to the table? Aside from new content, one thing is that you could build it from the ground up with HD 16:9 aspect ratio in mind. Keep the AR of the sprites but increase the FOV of the gameplay area.

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2019, 05:04:18 pm »
The resolution is baked in and scaled up from 270 by 480 or at least all layout design is. That gets you your 16 by 9. Also makes it convenient as it is the closest way in which you can play the game to its original form. There are overlays obscuring some of these details to avoid overwhelming the player with the size of the rooms
« Last Edit: December 12, 2019, 11:12:20 pm by Razieldemon »

cralso

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #16 on: December 14, 2019, 09:13:43 pm »
Quote from: pleasejust
Keep the AR of the sprites but increase the FOV of the gameplay area.
Increase the FOV sounds good indeed, however I think in some (maybe many?) cases make the things to bad, ie, part of game experience is indeed that "limited" field of view.
lets compare some games

First the "worst one" and probable the most important to considere
Castlevania Harmony of Despair

I'm not sure what is happening here exactly... :P

Do we really need to see where all the other areas are? I think with have the focus over player is good enough

Even newer games (than Castlevania SOTN) keep a limited FOV



While with SOTN with that limited FOV we have
1. a clear idea of what is happening
2. a feeling of going "discovering"


Of course I'm not saying that a greater FoV is bad at all, but it's something that shouldn't be treated carelessly :P
---

Cool mockup image Razieldemon, it'll be nice to see how it evolves :)

Did you finally choose Unity? Or something new/interesting about Godot? :P

Razieldemon

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2019, 04:13:29 pm »
Well I don't think there is honestly a perfect solution.

Im really only talking about the draw distance but even with that in mind there are other challenges to consider.

the horizontal resolution is 256 pixels natively.

A perfect fit or nearly left to right is about 5x. But the vertical is 207 and cuts off more than 30% in that case.

I don't think the wider look is too problematic... except in the case of single side rooms and there are at least a dozen important single frames in the game including boss arenas. And so doing additional draw distance will require a bit deeper levek of thought and it might not even work that well.

Its honestly my number 1 problem right now because im not happy cutting off half of the screen or filling it with fluff. But im not happier filling it with unecessary elements either.

StarWyvwern

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Re: Castlevania Symphony of the Night (Unity Project)
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2019, 08:58:38 am »
If this vision for SotN is real it will be like a dream come true. But if you are going to do it, I would suggest porting the missing songs from the saturn version, as well as unused songs from cancelled Castlevanias as well for new areas. Unless you already have a new bgm composer. Songs from Ressurection would work pretty well. Maybe even OCRemix versions of the SotN originals like; a looped version of "Wet Dreams OCRemix" in place of Dance of Pales, or "Smooth as Crystal Teardrops" instead of Crystal Teardrop?  :thumbsup:
Insert "Witty Text" here.