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Old 03-13-2008, 11:29 PM   #1
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Field of Dreams: Results

We received five superb entries into the Field of Dreams Contest. Enjoy reading the reviews below (and ogling at the screenshots)!

The map files themselves will be posted within a day so you can experience the same sense of awe and adventure that the judges felt as they played through each map.

The winner of this contest is Pagerron with his very impressive Test Facility map. Lausen scored a very strong second place, and Sleepysnow edged out Irate Giraffe for third place by half of a point.

A LOT of sincere thanks are in order.
Thanks to JPS and Obright for their hours and hours of work playing and judging the entries.
Thanks to Obright for the awesome screenshots he took of each map.
Thanks to Valkysas for lots of behind-the-scenes help and great ideas.
Thanks to Irate Giraffe, Lausen, Pagerron and Sleepysnow for really putting their hearts and souls into their maps; and also to everyone who couldn't enter, but showed enthusiasm for the Contest.

Pagerron has won a $25 Gift Card to a venue of his choice. The top three entrants will also receive a Pavilion-related prize which I will be able to announce soon.
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Old 03-14-2008, 12:34 AM   #2
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Re: Field of Dreams: Results

Land of Chaos by Lausen

Average Score: 85%
Rank: Second Place






Wavelength's Review:

Land of Chaos is a dark, occasionally spooky map, which comes straight from Lausen's current project. He really went all-out with this map! You'll find wicked mountain formations, floating statues, and even a primitive-looking carving in the middle of a lake. If you trigger a few events, it all leads to a very cool finale--and there's no way I'm spoiling it here; you'll have to see for yourself.

That is, if you can see any of it. I personally had trouble finding my way around the main map, which is set to Night, and didn't appreciate the aesthetics or the exploration until I went into the editor myself and changed the default time on the main map (that is, both Field Maps which have "Clear" as a default") to Evening. This won't be necessary if you're comfortable with RM3's "Night" views, but for those who aren't, it's worth making the change.

There's a foggy area that feels like a Haunted House, a graveyard that actually put me on edge, and a very intriguing overall design on the Field Map. Most of the scenery looks like it's dead or decaying, which fits the mood perfectly. Events were used to create obstacles as well as little aesthetic touches, and the effort paid off. A few patches of land seemed out of place, but on the whole the look is very effective. It's all a joy to explore, too, because there's a lot of interaction, and because of the finale, it all feels like it's adding up to a sense of completion.

Technical Deductions:
-1 point (2 x 0.5) for two spelling errors
-0.5 points because the sword event can (nonsensically) be triggered multiple times
-4 points because I needed to change the default settings in order to appreciate or enjoy this map

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 9.5
ORIGINALITY: 8.0
TECHNICAL: 4.5

TOTAL FROM WAVE: 85%




JPS' Review:

+ Great world design
+ Tons of interactivity
+/- Hard to see in fog at times

This map offered a variety of things to do, and was a joy to explore. I did have times where it has hard to navigate but I'm not deducting points because you need the fog to keep the proper mood of the place.

The whole dark theme fit well with this map, and could very well house an entire game if it wanted to.

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 9.0
ORIGINALITY: 10
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM JPS: 93%




Obright's Review:

This map had a lot going for it in terms of vastness, intricacy, and interactivity, but unfortunately it was hurt by a few fairly major issues. It was similar to his first map in that way, but I'm afraid the things which bothered me in the first map did so even more in this one.

Aesthetics: Even though the map was shrouded in night time, it was still bright enough to see that the map was indeed beautiful and interesting, but so much of the beauty was lost in the darkness. Still, the overall mood of the map was intended to be spooky, so the darkness added to that very well. I did have a look at the map in other time-of-day settings though, and it was a shame that I would have missed so much had I not done that. In spite of this I was greatly impressed by the stark beauty of the landscape.

Wanderlust: Just like in Lausen's first map, I was subjected to invisible walls that broke my will to wander just a few too many times. In fact, I had actually given up on this map for that very reason, until I was encouraged to go ahead and give it a second chance. I'm glad that I did, because I was treated to some nice new scenery and some COOL events, but had it not been for that encouragement I never would have known about them, because I was way too frustrated with the invisible walls which broke my nose constantly.

Originality: The landscape, while not totally unbelievable, was definitely weird...almost alien. I've seen mountainous formations like these before in the desert, but seeing them in that context was a rare treat. That, coupled with the many innovative flourished which Lausen added made this a very unique experience.

Technical: I saw nothing to deduct points for in this category.

AESTHETICS: 8.0
WANDERLUST: 6.0
ORIGINALITY: 9.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM OBRIGHT: 78%




Average Score: 85%
Rank: Second Place


*Please Note: the second screenshot in this review was obtained by changing the Time-of-Day to "evening" in Editor Mode.
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Old 03-14-2008, 04:09 AM   #3
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Re: Field of Dreams: Results Thread

Nalzdia by Lausen

Average Score: 80%
Rank: Not Applicable (this is not Lausen's highest-scoring map)




Wavelength's Review:

Nalzdia is one of the most epic Field maps I’ve ever seen in an RPG Maker game. Explore it to its fullest and you will see mountains, archipelagos, marshes, wasteland, beaches, fields of flowers, and much more. The mountains and beaches in particular were painstakingly crafted to wonderful effect, and although the quick changes in terrain occasionally detract from the artistic direction, the map is a resounding success on the whole.

It’s the little touches that make Nalzdia such a pleasure to view and to play. Trigger a certain event and a rainbow will appear over an island chain, creating perhaps the most beautiful single view I saw throughout this entire contest. Run alongside the river and you’ll find a realistic, walkable bridge created from both terrain and decorative models. Get a view from the mountain path from afar, and you’ll see dozens of beautifully-made peaks coming together to create a distinct terrain feature.

You can find a couple of keys (which each unlock one of the Towns on the map) by looking in the right place or completing extremely simple “puzzles.” I wish the interactivity felt tighter and more coherent (like in Lausen’s own Land of Chaos map)—especially since the towns (though very nicely laid out) don’t offer anything too interesting—and the Field isn’t any better for having them.

Despite these minor flaws, Nalzdia offers a lot to anyone who plays it, and the visual impressions it created in my mind will not soon disappear. This is exactly the kind of map I was hoping to see in the contest, and I recommend everyone check it out for inspiration in creating great-looking natural features.

Technical Deductions:
-1.0 (2 x 0.5) for two spelling errors

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 8.0
ORIGINALITY: 7.5
TECHNICAL: 9.0

TOTAL FROM WAVE: 84%





JPS' Review:

+ Good Dialogue
+ Good Humor
+ Undersea level was entertaining
+ Great use of layout and resources
+Land development is very smooth
+/- Key found in tree, easily missed if you weren't paying attention, but good for adventurers.
- Mountains are too spiky for mountains
- Found myself lost sometimes (Key, anyone?)
- Fairly generic do-this-for-that type things (keys? come on Lausen..I know you better then that...lol)

A pretty good map, Lausen definitely uses up the whole map to make you walk, I found myself walking to A and B more then exploring though, which kind of became frustrating after a while, a few well placed "warp points" could have worked in this "C" shaped continent, just for the sake of looking for more stuff.

The design of the map is very beautiful and artistically done; I didnt see anything out of place or odd...with the exception of the big green tree in the middle of a wasteland.

AESTHETICS: 8.0
WANDERLUST: 7.0
ORIGINALITY: 6.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM JPS: 75%





Obright's Review:

This map had an awful lot going for it as far as things to do, and innovative touches to keep things interesting and encourage exploration. However, there one or two things which hampered the experience for me.

Aesthetics: Lausen's first map submission was definitely nice looking, with a variety of different terrain types and landforms. There weren't many places to gain a really good view, but there were one or two. There were many sub-areas which were interesting, and they were all strung together very well.

Wanderlust: Because of the many sub-areas and the way they were joined together mentioned previously, I never felt like I was being herded along, even though technically I was to a certain extent. There were lots of places visible on the horizon that encouraged exploration. There was one problem though, and unfortunately it's a fairly big one...invisible walls caused by the map's borders. I know the map looks better when it's not obviously contained within a square, but having big flat areas bisected by a huge invisible wall just killed my desire to explore. If there had been something like a water barrier, large boulders, or a fence that let me know that I wouldn't be able to go there anyway then things would have been different, but it seemed like every single time I got into the exploration groove...BAM! Invisible wall. Reluctantly, I had to count off from the wanderlust score for this.

Originality: I saw many things which I've never seen done before with RM3 in this map (some of them were quite amazing), so naturally the originality score will be fairly high. Still, the small, original touches don't change the fact that it's still a fairly straight-forward map for the most part.

Technical: I saw nothing to deduct points for in this category.

AESTHETICS: 8.0
WANDERLUST: 7.0
ORIGINALITY: 9.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM OBRIGHT: 81%





Average Score: 80%
Rank: Not Applicable (this is not Lausen's highest-scoring map)
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Old 03-14-2008, 04:40 AM   #4
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Re: Field of Dreams: Results Thread

Sakura Lake by Sleepywolf

Average Score: 69%
Rank: Third Place




Wavelength's Review:

Sakura Lake has a minimalist and natural feel. Cherry blossoms and quaint castles conjure up images of feudal Japan—and like any good Japanese garden, the beauty of Sakura Lake lies in its simplicity. There’s nothing particularly eye-catching, but the consistent theme makes the map into more than the sum of its parts. In particular, be sure to catch a glimpse from the cliff, where you can peer across the ocean to see several smaller islands, some of which have castles of their own.

Having said that, there was nothing here that completely amazed me. The structure (an elliptical lake in the center) is something we’ve all seen before, and there’s no interactivity or change. For me, the biggest problem is that the slopes around the entire lake are almost completely uniform, so there aren’t any interesting branches off of the main path, nor are there any areas where the player can get a dramatic, sweeping view of the map.

I can picture Sakura Lake serving as a map in nearly any type of game and performing admirably. As a stand-alone experience, it falls a little short—it definitely captures the eye, but it doesn’t quite capture the mind. Still, on the whole it was a joy to experience, and it’s a great first effort from Sleepywolf.

AESTHETICS: 8.0
WANDERLUST: 5.0
ORIGINALITY: 6.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM WAVE: 69%




JPS' Review:

+ Beautiful landscape, especially the two towers on the distance
- No real exploring at all

Good attempt at making a contest-worthy map. Being a fairly new person, Im quite amazed at the level of detail Sleepywolf's landscape had in it; it did treat me to some really nice views at times, unlike a lot of RM3 maps.

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 4.0
ORIGINALITY: 5.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM JPS: 68%




Obright's Review:

This map wasn't the most innovative of the 5, nor was it the most interesting, but it was certainly beautiful.

Aesthetics: The choice of terrains, season, and climate all came together really well on this map, in my opinion. This map was definitely beautiful, with its sunbeams, spring flowers, and castles in the distance. There were times when I was actually reminded of the 'peach orchard' sequence from Kurosawa's 'DREAMS'. However, there were places where the path was tilted at a 45 degree angle, which looked awkward to me.

Wanderlust: This map didn't really seem to hold many secrets, so I would have been content to just sit upon my high perch and look at the beautiful scenery. I could see that there was a path around the lake, and a castle in the center of it, but nothing really compelled me to explore, unfortunately. I did explore the map to the fullest extent that i could, but it kinda felt like excercise. "ok, that's ONE lap around the lake!" However, when I did wander around, I was treated to some nice views of the landscape.

Originality: This map wasn't terribly innovative, but it wasn't terribly unoriginal either.

Technical: I saw no points to deduct from the technical score.

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 5.0
ORIGINALITY: 5.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM OBRIGHT: 71%




Average Score: 69% (rounded from 69.33%)
Rank: Third Place
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Old 03-14-2008, 05:22 AM   #5
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Re: Field of Dreams: Results Thread

Summer's Coast by Irate Giraffe

Average Score: 69%
Rank: Fourth Place




Wavelength's Review:

Summer's Coast by Irate Giraffe

Summer's Coast is a beautiful and idyllic map which conjures up Tom-Sawyer like nostalgia by presenting a welcoming coastline and two wildflower-filled towns that feel like they are there just for you to explore.

Irate Giraffe has done a great job taking the most beautiful elements of a summertime beach scene and turning them into a playable map. You start in a canyon--you need to actually walk over a steep threshold--and once you do, you are treated to a dramatic tropical view. There are dozens of islands in the distance and they look spectacular in sunshine or moonlight. The view from outside of Seascape is incredible. In terms of raw beauty, Summer's Coast takes the cake.

Unfortunately, there isn't a whole lot to do. Buildings in town are devoid of any people or objects--in fact, the whole world is pretty devoid of people and objects, except for a turtle egg that you can accidentally crush and a funny, lascivious magazine you can find. The towns in particular were a little disappointing--they amounted to a lot of running around for no apparent reason.

Between the lack of interaction and the commonplace setting, Summer's Coast doesn't offer much in the way of new and different, but it's beautiful, and it's worth checking out for the sense of place that it creates.

Technical Deductions:
-2 points because I got stuck behind a plant inside the Sanctuary, and had to restart

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 7.5
ORIGINALITY: 6.5
TECHNICAL: 8.0

TOTAL FROM WAVE: 79.5%




JPS' Review:

+ Beautiful landscape
- No real exploring at all

At first I thought I was in for a real treat seeing the memory at 25%, but it turned out to be a lot of running for a balloon ride and a dirty magazine in a cathedral.

AESTHETICS: 8.0
WANDERLUST: 5.0
ORIGINALITY: 4.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM JPS: 65%




Obright's Review:

Irate Giraffe's map was fairly simple, but there were several nooks and crannies to explore in it. The terrain was pretty, but not to the extent that some of the other maps were.

SCORES:

Aesthetics: There were places where the path was tilted at a 45 degree angle, which always just looks awkward to me. It doesn't hinder movement, so I didn't count off on the technical score, but it just looks bad in my opinion. There also was not very much variety in terrain types, decorations, or other things which would have added interest. This lack of variety makes for a very thematically unified map, but visually it's rather bland. IG chose a theme, explored it fully and stuck with it, and there's a lot to be said for that.

Wanderlust: There were some nice views, but no obvious way to get to any of the places in view, because they were all islands. You're told at the outset that a balloon ride will take you to another one of those islands, and that there was a hidden sanctuary along the coast somewhere, so that's two things that you know of to be found from searching. However, once you found them, there wasn't much else to find. If it was possible to FLY in the game, then this map's wanderlust score would have been higher.

Originality: This map was not terribly original, yet in all my RM3 playing I don't think I've ever actually seen anyone attempt to make a tropical island map like this, so I can't say the map is totally unoriginal either.

Technical: I saw nothing to deduct points for in this category.

AESTHETICS: 7.0
WANDERLUST: 5.0
ORIGINALITY: 5.0
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM OBRIGHT: 63%


Average Score: 69% (rounded from 69.17%)
Rank: Fourth Place
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Old 03-14-2008, 05:59 AM   #6
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Re: Field of Dreams: Results Thread

Test Facility by Pagerron

Average Score: 87%
Rank: First Place




Wavelength's Review:

Pagerron put together one of the most interesting and unique maps I've ever seen. Your experience with Test Facility will be short, but sweet. Test Facility is a manmade bunker that feels like it came straight out of Area 51. Its piece de resistance is a floating spaceship which must be the product of several joined event models. It looks great.

The environment is stark--the edges are straight and feel man-made, and wonderfully jagged mountains line the horizon. A well-built staircase seems to have been constructed from Coffin Relic models. A small "living quarters" segment rounds out the feel--it's a perfect use of a "mini-map." Pagerron did a great job creating a sense of place, and an equally good job making his map fun to interact with, even though it's over quickly.

I could niggle about the odd choice of starting location or the slightly-too-blunt writing, but those are mere freckles on a beautiful piece of work. Test Facility is a true Field of Dreams, and a great example of what RPG Maker 3 is capable of when you let your imagination (and memory limits) run wild.

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 8.0
ORIGINALITY: 9.5
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM WAVE: 89%


....

JPS' Review:

+ Very interesting World design
+ The alien sphere event was awesome, I didnt know there was a way to move vertically
+ Building the ship was awesome
+/- Some events are clunky, you have to be in an exact spot to be able to activate them, no points taken though on account of not being able to fix it
- Managed to go into "New Town 1," which should have been blocked off, perhaps by an extra decoration

The map offered a very intriguing look at what could be done with RPGM3, with the creation of a space ship and buried events, I was kind of disappointed he didnt make it bigger with more warps to buildings, but overall it was a very good and interesting map.

AESTHETICS: 9.0
WANDERLUST: 7.0
ORIGINALITY: 10
TECHNICAL: 9.0

TOTAL FROM JPS: 86%





Obright's Review:

My initial reaction upon first viewing Pagerron's map was how different it looked from any other RM3 map that I had ever seen. I mean I've seen people do some amazing things with the map maker, like making flat paths through the landscape that look like the natural landscape had been altered my man, but Page's map took that a step further. His map took that idea to the extreme, and wound up looking 100% man-made, which is extremely difficult to pull off with RM3's map editor. The corners are sharp and even, as were the top edges of the walls...yup...WALLS.

The overall concept of the map is also very interesting and innovative, as the map is actually a huge space ship testing facility. As the player, you actually build and test the ship yourself! Little touches like 'beaming up to the ship' were amazing, and added to the mysterious atmosphere of the map.

Aesthetics: Since the map was meant to be a base for scientific research, the lines and forms tended to be a little repetative, as mankind's buildings are wont to be, but the choice of different terrains which make up the facility work well in my opinion. The surrounding mountains also set off the facility very well, with the contrast of naturalistic forms and greenery. I didn't really like the use of the desert terrain on those mountains, but I liked the idea of using multiple kinds of terrains on them to add interest. Perhaps the stone terrain would have worked a little better?

Wanderlust: The map was rather small, and there was really only 1 panoramic vista to view, but in spite of this I was compelled to explore what was there due to the outlandish nature of the surroundings. The one vista is viewed from the top of the 'launching ramp', but everywhere else on the passable part of the map is surrounded by a wall, which limits the view.

Originality: What can I say...it's the most original, innovative map I've ever seen for RM3.

Technical: I saw no points to deduct from the technical score. The fact that Pagerron chose a geometric, man-made scheme for his map oppened up MANY opportunities for nit-picking, but he did a great job making his map look built, not naturally formed.

AESTHETICS: 8.0
WANDERLUST: 8.0
ORIGINALITY: 10
TECHNICAL: 10

TOTAL FROM OBRIGHT: 86%




Average Score: 87%
Rank: First Place
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