To be honest I am awestruck with the feel and style of the story, Detail in mapping and methods used (Puzzles) that I'm depressed I can not come close:(
Don't think that way Tr00pertj - I liked Solar Escape! Really, a lot of it is feeling out your strengths and playing to them. So, for instance my initial plan for Requiem was to have a much more classic non-linear hub flow. But I realized pretty quickly that because I'm still a beginner, I wasn't able to make something as complex as, say, Melan's Disorientation. Instead I opted for the "string of pearls" layout that the map has now, with relatively separate sections that I could build up and make interconnected in isolation without getting overwhelmed.
Same thing with graphics: they key thing is consistency. A lot of very well done Thief maps look awful or average, but after a few minutes player will sort of phase those things out as long as the play is engaging enough and everything is at the same level of quality (whatever that is). If you open up darkradiant and compare Requiem with one of Melan, Bikerdude, or Grayman's maps you'll actually notice that it's in some ways much more graphically simple (they're the masters). There are really only one or two places where I do anything more complicated with patches than the standard arch/bevel/cylinder/bulged patch. Simple things like using trim on your brushes, and having a complimentary lighting/texture scheme can really go a long way.
For storytelling, I thought that was a strong point in Solar Escape. The key things are to always try to make the readables feel like part of your world (so if it's raining in your map, or the flowers outside a mansion are pretty, have people mention that in the readables and how they feel about it) and to try to maintain a human element in them all (so instead of just having a text say "the key is behind the stairs", you can make a small tale about why the key is there, and what the guy who put it there was feeling when he did that, or have them recall a previous episode in their life that their current situation reminds them of, etc.).
Keep going man. Definitely feel free to ask me how I did anything in Requiem, I'm happy to share (and hopefully before I begin to forget what I did
Edited by Moonbo, 10 October 2013 - 06:56 PM.