Bith by Sleep`s level desing.



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hemmoheikkinen

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So I was watching some of the old trailers about BBS, and the one from Tokyo Game show 2007 had an interesting part. There was gameplay section where Terra is jumping over thorns in the Enchanted Dominion. This to me suggests that platforming(in some way) would have been more present(all thou I know this is a beat or alpha trailer, right?) in the game.

I wonder what changed that. Was it true that BBS was first planned to release on a PS2? Maybe the change from PS2 to PSP had an effect on the level desing?
 

kuraudoVII

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If what I remember is true, Birth by Sleep was indeed planned as a PS2 title, but was pushed back and relegated to the PSP due to other commitments. Assuming this is correct, I'd imagine that this would definitely have a change in the level design since it could only process so much. The PSP is a powerful enough system, but Birth by Sleep did push the system to its limits.
 

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I remember those days. A lot of things were changed when it was shifted to PSP. If you search old scans you'll see moments happening in places they don't or the "evil Terra" talking to Maleficent.
 

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We've got more proof of the platforming design in the Jungle Book rooms that were still on the PSP disc: platforming over water. Would have been a huge pain, but I think I would have appreciated it over The Flattest Game in the Series.
 
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hemmoheikkinen

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We've got more proof of the platforming design in the Jungle Book rooms that were still on the PSP disc: plaforming over water. Would have been a huge pain, but I think I would have appreciated it over The Flattest Game in the Series.
Oh yeah. I forgot about the Jungle Book world.

I think the flatness of the levels is why I don`t like BBS levels so much. KH2 suffers from this as well a little. I also think Cavern of Remambrance in KH2FM, and The Realm of Darkness level in BBSFM show how much fun platforming can be. This aspect of the series has always been little clunky, but I think it makes levels more interesting.

Really glad that DDD brought platforming and exploring back.
 

kuraudoVII

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Oh yeah. I forgot about the Jungle Book world.

I think the flatness of the levels is why I don`t like BBS levels so much. KH2 suffers from this as well a little. I also think Cavern of Remambrance in KH2FM, and The Realm of Darkness level in BBSFM show how much fun platforming can be. This aspect of the series has always been little clunky, but I think it makes levels more interesting.

Really glad that DDD brought platforming and exploring back.
To be fair, they kinda sorta did bring platforming back in Birth by Sleep. It wasn't anywhere near as extensive as the first game or Dream Drop Distance (or even the Cavern of Remembrance), but there were still moments like in Disney Town where there was some good platforming. At the very least, I appreciate being able to use my abilities like Sliding Dash to get to certain areas early and get abilities like Time Splicer and Superglide before I should.
 

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To be fair, they kinda sorta did bring platforming back in Birth by Sleep. It wasn't anywhere near as extensive as the first game or Dream Drop Distance (or even the Cavern of Remembrance), but there were still moments like in Disney Town where there was some good platforming. At the very least, I appreciate being able to use my abilities like Sliding Dash to get to certain areas early and get abilities like Time Splicer and Superglide before I should.
Oh yeah! The tunnels were awesome! The Pete pinball machine was fun, and the part where you had to use thunder to power up the machines reminded me of KH1. I still wish we would have had more levels like that. But you are right, platforming was (maybe not as big of role when compared to other titles of the series) still part of BBS.

There were some part on Neverland as well, but for some reason I didn`t really like them.

I still wonder why it was decreased even in KH2? Maybe the decided to flatten the levels since KH1 got some critique about the platforming? I find it kind of ironic that in games such as KH2 where Sora`s mobilty is really good, and in BBS were Aqua and Ventus move very fluently, the levels were more flat.
 

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I always assumed it was an overreaction to complaints from KH1, yeah. Isn't the current party line that KH1 was created to emulate Mario 64? (Kingdom Hearts has more origin stories than Superman) It seems like they dropped what was supposed to be the major element: platforming/exploration, and I can't imagine why they would do so unless they were afraid of bad press.

The funny thing about quality platforming is that the actual gameplay is enhanced by making the platforming challenging, so if you have more mobility, the challenge and accomodations of the level design have to be increased exponentially. It's easier to make a quality platformer with a restricted character, like the original Prince of Persia, than it is with someone like Sora, who can... fly. Sometimes the devs make levels just as involved as ever - consider Duke Nukem 3D, where you can pick up a jetpack and skip the whole damn stage - but if Square Enix had given up on making the platforming and exploration the focus, I'm not surprised they gave up on detailed level design.

It's funny, the pinball in BBS was never something I liked, but it has served for me to be even more embarrassed about the pachinko segment of Super Mario Sunshine.
 

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Do you think the unused platforming and exploration ideas they had for BBS will get to be used in BBSv2?
 
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