Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]

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Offline plural

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This is a story of a young girl who escapes the doldrums of school to find something magical, revealed to her through a folk-tale.

This requires KS+ - http://egomassive.com/ks/

Download:
dropbox 16.96MB

Music:
Mattia Vlad Morleo
Oursvince
Track listing can be found in the World.ini file.

Custom character made with Vegetal Gibber's "Heroine Juni" spritesheet.
Custom tilesets from Fredrik and Rickard Andersson.

The first two lines of the story are taken from "Kings - The Sabbath Queen."

Update: The level has been updated. It is slightly brighter in two areas. The "lights" have been edited. You climb up at the end now (nothing really changed there except that). The map has been "completed" and you start with the map powerup. An SGE was edited out.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2017, 23:56:07 by plural »

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Offline SilasMann

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2017, 05:19:06 »
Wow this level is absolutely gorgeous. Short and tells its story perfectly. I couldn't even tell what tilesets were used, everything looks so unique. I only wish it were longer, although it's length is probably one of the reasons it is so good. A+
« Last Edit: July 12, 2017, 06:08:40 by SilasMann »

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Offline ixMarcel

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2017, 05:26:32 »
Oh boy, this is gonna be good :whoa:

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Offline egomassive

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2017, 08:53:03 »
I loved the story and the atmosphere.  <3 It was a little too dark at times, but I guess I didn't really need to see where I was going.
You're so talented. *gives star*

Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2017, 15:48:05 »
Wow, that was beautiful! I've got goosebumps. :O
I agree with egomassive though, It's quite dark but if you use full screen or hide the desktop it's not so bad. Still, incredible job!

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Offline ixMarcel

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2017, 23:45:40 »
Beautiful and atmospheric! I love these kind of games. Great work!

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Offline Talps

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #6 on: July 13, 2017, 03:16:06 »
That was very beautiful. The story was compelling and the art, beautiful and strange. I think this is a great example of what KS is so good at; creating an outlet for the thoughts and images in your head and letting you share something very significant to yourself with other people. Like Silas, I could only wish it was longer and deeper. I'd love to understand more of what I was reading. Your writing was beautiful. The, umm...

Spoiler: (click to show/hide)

A couple of minor issues:

The windows in your second screenshot are on layer three (unless I'm misunderstanding them and they're meant to be foreground.)
I was using the map a lot; I'm not sure if this is something you intended me to do or not. Some of the substitute screens, like when you return to the screen with the large-antlered guy, were not hidden.
Spoiler: More on the map (click to show/hide)

I was so excited to see a new level by you, especially one so unexpected!

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Offline plural

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2017, 10:48:41 »
Those actually weren't intended to be windows but lights, I was initially using the pure white blocks in the train station tileset as the background for the image and put some of the cascading light from the same tileset over the top but it seemed too bright so I used the window image instead which I'm sure wasn't as effective at conveying what I thought.

Usually I spend a lot more trying to go revise things but I wanted to at least keep it in some kind of relative connection to being a type of jam-type thing which I think is what that Knytt of the month thing represents. I gave up on doing a lot of things because I tend to just get stuck and revise forever if I don't. Like the end was supposed to be an area that you climb out of with the light emanating from a hole you climb which would be the exit with the ending cutscene but after a few tries at using the tileset "quite the hills" and having light come out of it, I could just never get it to look right so I just made it become white.

The map thing is there because I started doing the map and gave up because halfway through I realized it's a completely linear level with only one secret screen to it so there was no reason for a map. I can tell you when I gave up, it was at the point where you climb because everything there would be offset by 1 on the map and I was feeling super lazy about having to redefine the map position for every single screen after that fact. So lazy, in fact, that I apparently lacked the energy to disable the map after I gave up on making it.

I may revise this slightly to change the value of the sub tints on areas that are darker than the rest (though it's still intentionally "too dark"). And it never even occurred to me that someone might use the map so I guess I'll just complete it because it's close enough to being complete. I expected there to be things I needed to change and that's why I haven't uploaded it to Knyttlevels yet.

EDIT:
I've updated the level, the preview image above has been changed to reflect the difference. Also, the map is completed but if it appears to lie that's working as intended.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2017, 23:54:56 by plural »

Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #8 on: July 14, 2017, 04:43:45 »
Amazing level :D *star*

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Offline egomassive

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #9 on: July 14, 2017, 09:55:57 »

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Offline plural

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2017, 10:18:21 »
Spoiler: About the secret... (click to show/hide)

Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2017, 02:06:27 »
Nice! Atmospheric and ominous :-)
The ending reminded me of one of my favorite short horror stories :-)
Do you do much writing otherwise?

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Offline plural

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2017, 17:01:19 »
I try to write other things but I'm not very successful at it. I tend to do it much less these days, at least for things that are short stories. I had many websites that I used to put stuff up on that came and died. My tumblr that I put stuff up on in college has some stuff left on it, I had it all private but I made most of the "stories" public, if anyone wants to waste some time.

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Offline SC

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #13 on: July 24, 2017, 04:37:10 »
I freaking LOVED this level. The lore, custom characters, animations, aesthetics, everything. Seems like a tale from an old 20th century dark fantasy novel. Well done.

Spoiler: (click to show/hide)

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Offline Purple Ink

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Re: Harlow and the Tarandus Queen [KS+] [Environmental/Misc]
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2017, 20:16:24 »
This was a really beautiful level. I'm constantly amazed at how good people are at evoking different emotions through a simple game like Knytt Stories.