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Abandoned Mall Metaroom   
I_am_THEdragon

I_am_THEdragon
Australia  


  3/11/2021  5

Not to be confused with the dead and abandoned "Creatures Mall".

I’ve dabbled in creating C3 breeds, and now I’d like to create a metaroom. I already have the visuals of the room pretty much done aside from a couple of small bits, but I have yet to start on any of the technical elements (The cryptic language of CAOS is beyond me and PRAY is more like “Pray that it works” am I right).

It will have two levels, with an elevator at each end of the room to take creatures between them. Since the metaroom is a very structural, inorganic indoor setting, I’ve figured out a few ways to have natural food sources. The abandoned mall will be filled with ivy-like foliage, from which some fruit or seeds may drop. I will also have critters roaming around, sort of like more aesthetic and alien versions of rats and roaches. There will probably be a few fish in the fountain pool too. I’m also going to have at least one food vendor, such as the one I posted to the sprites gallery the other day.

The whole thing is supposed to be very vaporwave-themed, not so much the neon variant but the pastel liminal spaces kind.

https://i.imgur.com/toCJyj0.png <Full size image at this link. Sorry but you'll have to copy and paste it, because imgur links don't cooperate with this site and I can't upload the full size image to my usual host.

I would’ve forgone making this thread if I was confident that I could do this all myself, but I reckon I might need help from the community. I can do all the graphical bits, but the actually making it work part might be a bit beyond me at the moment. Any suggestions and feedback are welcome!

 
Linda

Linda
Germany  

 visit Linda's website: My deviantArt gallery
  3/11/2021  1

Lovely to see more indoor-themed metarooms! I'm afraid I struggle with the same problem of being more of a graphics than a CAOS person, but I hope this room will get finished, it looks really dope :D
 
Zurinsel13

Zurinsel13
Austria  

 visit Zurinsel13's website: Random maybe
  3/11/2021  1

Ooooh I love this! This is a really neat idea :D

I could imagine toxic norns going through the trash of the food corner and finding yummy leftover burgers and sodas xD


"Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others"
-Jonathan Swift

 
I_am_THEdragon

I_am_THEdragon
Australia  


  3/11/2021  3

Zurinsel13 wrote:
Ooooh I love this! This is a really neat idea :D

I could imagine toxic norns going through the trash of the food corner and finding yummy leftover burgers and sodas xD



That's a good idea! I'll probably add a trash can that acts as a dispense for detritus.

Just now I've drawn up some concepts for the sort of critters and bugs that will inhabit this metaroom. Since it's supposed to be an abandoned building I'm thinking of something like rats and cockroaches, but without giving the area the impression of being ugly or dirty.


 
cyborg

cyborg



  3/12/2021

There might be some abandoned unsold toys in the malls. Maybe Lisa Frank style plushies, 90s toys like Transformers, robots like furby, handhelds such as Tamagotchi‎ and the Gameboy.

If I have time, I could do some of the agents.

 
FlyingEttiNorn

FlyingEttiNorn
United States  


  3/12/2021

If you're doing vaporwave then ya gotta have dolphins
 
Mandymom

Mandymom



  3/12/2021

Yes, dolphins everywhere!

Grendels aren't so bad, but I love Ettins! They're adorable! The complexity of creatures is quite amazing.
 
I_am_THEdragon

I_am_THEdragon
Australia  


  3/12/2021  2

cyborg wrote:
There might be some abandoned unsold toys in the malls. Maybe Lisa Frank style plushies, 90s toys like Transformers, robots like furby, handhelds such as Tamagotchi‎ and the Gameboy.

If I have time, I could do some of the agents.



These are great ideas! Though sticking more with the theme of 'vaporwave' than nostalgia, I was thinking of maybe having a cassette player that has the same function as the stereo from the Norn Meso, except it plays some vaporwave-sounding tunes.

As for the suggestion of dolphins, that's very fitting! Though I'm not sure where I would put them. Maybe the 'fish' in the pool could actually be tiny water mammals resembling dolphins?

Anyway, here's a render of the room with some notes on it, uploaded to the only place that would let me upload large images in high quality.

 
cyborg

cyborg



  3/12/2021

This is so cool. I could write a story for the metaroom and the Bald norns.

This mall is obviously of human origin. Somehow these futuristic humans have gotten their hands on genetic engineering. Unless you want the mall to be of Shee origin.

The neon fauna seem to be escaped designer pets. A real world example of a designer pet is GloFish; zebrafish that we humans genetically engineered to glow. Maybe there's an abandoned pet shop.
Seeing the goldfish abominations (e.g: Celestial eye goldfish) we humans selectively bred, there's no reason why there can't be a fish we bred to look like a mini dolphin. The mini dolphin could take after the Rainbow Sharkling in code so it can be multi-coloured except with a higher mutation chance so the colours don't muddy after a few generations.

 
Linnet

Linnet
United States  

 visit Linnet's website: my neocities page
  3/12/2021  1

Really cool concept!

For the visuals on the pond, you might consider something like the fake caustics I talk about in step 15 in this blog post. Probably something more toned-down than the actual effect I went for, but you could use the same technique.

 
Alyssa

Alyssa



  3/12/2021  1

I love the iridiroach to BITS. Glowy fish and little designer dolphinfish would be fantastic too!

You could also just have like a mural of dolphins somewhere, but I think dolphins or dolphin-like fish is probably a funnier idea.

Maybe an aquarium on the lower level? My local mall has an aquarium.

 
I_am_THEdragon

I_am_THEdragon
Australia  


  3/20/2021  2

Hello and please pardon my absence!

First of all, thank you for all the responses! Cyborg, I hadn't ever really considered to story or origins behind the mall, And although I'd planned for the lifeforms inside to be alien I do suppose it fits in aesthetically with human architecture. Perhaps it is a piece of an abandoned Earth building that the Shee picked up and adapted into a metaroom? I also see what what you're getting at with the genetically engineered fish! Having the tiny dolphin-fish possess colour genetics like the rainbow sharklings is a brilliant idea, too! I was thinking of naming these creatures Phindols, after the pink dolphin character that appears in the animation ENA - Temptation Stairway by Joel Guerra.

Linnet, thank you for the suggestion/technique! I've tried it a bit myself and haven't gotten it to work properly, but that may be because I am using the EEVEE engine or it could just be the existing settings of the water model. In any case I will figure it out eventually, as I think caustics would be very good for the vapowave aesthetic.
On a slightly related note, I am planning for there to be a retractable bridge over the water that can only be activated by the hand. That way the pond isn't a total death trap.

Alyssa, I'm glad you like the iridiroach! I figured an abandoned building would have more 'urban' critters like rats and roaches, but I wanted them to have a pretty, otherworldly feel rather than a grungy, urban one. The aquarium is a great idea too, perhaps a flooded lower floor? Unfortunately I feel as though I've already come a bit too far to implement it but that is not set in stone.

As for my progress, not much has been done with the room model itself but I have started working on some assets.



This is the rat-like creature, which I have still yet to name. I haven't animated it at all yet but it does have a basic rig. Since the sprite is so small the animations shouldn't need to be too precise. Not sure I even needed to add the fur texture, actually.



This is the Polygourd! Despite the name it's not actually a gourd, but a fruit that sprouts from the plant overgrowth in the abandoned mall.

I had quite a lucky encounter just now, too. I found a CC0 (Public Domain) 3D model of a cassette player! I will most likely modify it to make a sprite for the cassette player toy I mentioned earlier. I've also found a CC0 roach model I'll use as a base for the iridiroach.

 
Karithina

Karithina
Australia  

 visit Karithina's website: Instagram
  3/20/2021

Love the ratty so much and the whole room is sick as!

Something else I feel like is missing is roman statues, could just be busts of the nude norns since they are already vaguely sculpturesque haha. I feel like they are in a bit of vaporwave though, so you probably thought of them/tried it and already don't have them there for a reason!

 
FlyingEttiNorn

FlyingEttiNorn
United States  


  3/20/2021

I_am_THEdragon wrote:
I was thinking of naming these creatures Phindols, after the pink dolphin character that appears in the animation ENA - Temptation Stairway by Joel Guerra.


MAN that was a good video. also oddly relatable which sounds really weird but is true

vaporwave actually originated as a surreal critique of capitalism so the fact that it takes place in a mall is fitting. With that in mind itd be cool to have like, posters and advertisements plastered all over the walls and starting to peel off, and maybe a literal vending machine... clothes store where all the clothes have been ripped to shreds by wildlife... :P

 
I_am_THEdragon

I_am_THEdragon
Australia  


  3/20/2021  4

The norn sculptures are a great idea! For that one I could just pose and retexture my bald norn model. I also love the idea of old posters and adverts around! Ian Hubert has a great short tutorial on how to make posters and stickers look old and torn (Among other great 'lazy' tutorials) that I could use for the effect.

Also, here's the iridiroach! Or, an early version of it at least.


Unfortunately a lot of detail is lost when scaling down these to sprite size, such as the antennae. I'm still working on finding that balance where the general appearance of the creature is still conveyed in as small a sprite as possible. That said, this is supposed to be a modified/alien creature, so it doesn't necessarily have to reflect the exact scale of its real-world counterpart.
Credit to Jsplifer on Blendswap for the original model!
https://blendswap.com/blend/1966

 
Karithina

Karithina
Australia  

 visit Karithina's website: Instagram
  3/21/2021

Yessss glossy bug friend!
 
Linnet

Linnet
United States  

 visit Linnet's website: my neocities page
  3/21/2021

Nice work on the critters so far! Unfortunately I haven't worked with the EEVEE renderer much myself so I can't say why the fake caustics might be giving you trouble.

For the loss of detail what I'd suggest would be to work with a viewport of your intended render size up at all times, and tweak the model to look good at the target size. This might result in an exaggerated close-up, but that's fine! It'll help prevent getting bogged down with fine details that will be completely lost at the in-game size.

 
I_am_THEdragon

I_am_THEdragon
Australia  


  6/1/2021  4

Howdy everyone! First of all, sorry for disappearing for so long! A lot of stuff got in the way, and I just lost interest in this project for a while. That said, I have not abandoned it!

I will admit that not much has happened since my last update. I've made a starting attempt at some elevators but I am not quite happy with them yet. I've also come to realise that I won't be able to get that nice transparent glass effect on the upper floor railing, so I am going to have to settle for the glass being maybe a pale blue with a 'dithering' effect for transparency. But that might make it difficult to see any small objects behind it, in which case I might just change the railing entirely.

I've also decided I will probably scrap the current iridiroach model and make my own from scratch. The model I used is nice, but not for tiny side-on sprites. Linnet, your advice sounds very good; I'll keep it in mind!

 


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