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Vote for your favorite track! Round 271

#1
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Round 271 Voting

It's time for another round of voting for RCTgo's Build It! Competition. Four more great entries are up for voting - below are the name and screenshot of each. It's now time for you to vote for your favorite track!

Let's have a great round!

#1: Qabr

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#2: Tropic Thunder

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#3: Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure

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#4: Mine Escape

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Voting is now open!

Voting will remain open until Saturday, September 2
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#2
This round is pretty cut and dry, one obvious winner, and three mediocre entries.

Qabr:

I'm very happy to FINALLY be able to see this in its full glory, and I'm very happy to see the color pallet has been expanded a bit to break up what used to be almost a solid brown color scheme. The presentation on this is also excellent because it showcases the coaster and not the park. All in all this is what a complete no Custom Scenery ride looks like in RCT2 (correct me if I'm wrong but I'm fairly certain there's no CS present in this build) and it should easily take the cake in this round as it's the only complete entry. [EDIT] This isn't full NCSO.

Tropic Thunder:

This isn't a terrible layout, but the name has absolutely nothing to do with the coaster and it completely lacks any sort of theme. (You'd think if it's named "Tropic Thunder" it'd have some tropical scenery around it, not pine trees) I'm happy to see there was an attempt at a station, although it's really bland and looks like the same pieces were used to make the entire thing. Also, the last turn that transitions from the cobra roll into the break run would probably kill people with the speed the train would have after leaving that cobra roll. Anyways, this isn't a bad first entry, but it needs a lot of work for consideration as a potential winner.

Dueling Bobs:

First, PLEASE stop self advertising. The competition was made anonymous on purpose, advertising which entry is yours may either garner you votes you don't deserve or take ones away (based on whether people are biased towards or against you). Keep us in the dark in the future, and yes we'll see who made the entry when we watch the POV, but if people are taking the time to watch the POV at least they're looking at all of the entries and not just voting based on name recognition. Now for the actual CC: This is a direct step down from your last entry, the only thing that's really improved is the layout.

- Terraforming and terrapainting need a lot of work to both look more natural and realistic, I suggest using rockwork to help with that since the terrain tools in RCT3 are rather lackluster. ShyGuy's Rock Set is a great tool for this.

- More variation in foliage and adding bushes/ground shrubs/scrubs is a necessity.

- Never mix Custom Scenery with vanilla in RCT3, it always looks terrible. I'd suggest a bobsled CTR, but I've never seen one. You'll also want to get pathcovers to replace the ugly vanilla paths.

Not a bad second entry, but you have a long ways to go before this one would be considered complete.

Mine Escape:

This entry has similar issues to Tropic Thunder, including a name that doesn't relate to the ride at all. If it's called "Mine Escape" shouldn't part of the ride be located within mines? Sure, some "mine" scenery items have been placed around the ride, but that doesn't make it a mine (also, I'd advise against raising buildings into the air and suspending them because it leaves you with really ugly supports below them). I understand part of the ride is underground, but there should be scenery around that makes the area look like a mine as opposed to a hill with barrels, broken wheels, and buildings strewn across it. Perhaps you could take inspiration from the Mine Train coaster in Dynamite Dunes (RCT1).
Team CoasterTech

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#3
The round has started at last. Let's get into it.

[Disclaimer: I don't judge entries based on ride layouts, as I understand that is not a domain I excel personally at. Most of my judgement is based on everything but the layout. As such, things like ride-interaction with neighbouring elements is still something I consider.]

A very interesting round, over all. Generally speaking, all entries kept me fairly interested. Some more than others, of course. Rather fortunate for me that 3 of the 4 entries were made in RCT2, or an extension of it (OpenRCT2, RCT:Classic), the game I'm most experienced with. Gives me the ability to judge some of them with at least some credibility.

Tropic Thunder: I can confidently say the least impressive of them all was Tropic Thunder. Above everything else, there is a naturally lacking atmosphere, that Qabr and Mine Escape manage to convey. The title and description are telling me 'tropical jungles of Vietnam', but the entry itself, unfortunately, isn't. I'd suggest the creator of this entry to work on adding details that help show the original ideas they come up with for future work. For starters, I wager the jungles of Vietnam aren't as flat or as monotonous with purely grassy fields with a tree every once in a while. Even looking at stills from the film, Tropic Thunder (2008), I can tell the foliage needs to be far more denser in general, with grassy large fields only every once in a while. There could have been mountains in the background, and river streams flowing inside the jungle to elevate it even more. 

It's an okay attempt, but I'm confident you could have definitely put a lot more love into it. I suggest picking a wider selection of objects to convey your ideas with much better precision and accuracy. Even the vanilla selection in the game could be used to pull off your original idea here with a far better end result.

Mine Escape: A slight contrast to Tropic Thunder, I appreciate the far more focused approach with the scenery as well as landscaping. Relatively speaking, this is very well 'looking' work. With a simple glimpse, one can tell it has a focused colour palette that it uses with pride. It successfully conveys the idea of a busy mine in the middle of somewhere, with rusty mining equipment everywhere. However, when I dug deeper into how each bit of scenery was executed, some of the magic started to wear off. The individual vanilla mine shack objects aren't placed on flat soil and so there is a rather ugly looking black support structure visible underneath those objects. The smaller 1 unit pieces, such as the broken wheels, or the logs/crates are placed in far too many places to fill some empty space. That in itself could have worked, were it not for the fact these objects are placed without switching the orientation of these objects even once. A simple click of the rotate button once in a while could have fixed this. Above everything else, however, it is the roofed up area, covering what I can only assume to be the station of the ride, that shows some weak architecture. I can't see why varying some of that roof into different shapes, or perhaps creating an entire mine shack with the available object pieces couldn't have been the better solution. Right now it's four rows of continuous triangles with no variation in between. 

To summarise, a good attempt, and you've certainly figured out how to pull off atmosphere with a focused colour palette. The thing keeping you back, at least at the moment, is the inability to use the roster of object pieces available in the game with better efficiency. Work on general architectural shapes you could have made with this specific theme, even. Mine shacks have an easy-to-make shape, generally speaking.

Now we've come to the top two: Qabr and Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure. The tricky part for me is that I can't tell if the RCT3 entry here had more effort put into it over the RCT2 one. After putting some thought into it, I had to decide Qabr based on some crucial criteria Alps didn't pull off better than Qabr, in my opinion. 

Qabr vs. Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure

The first thing done just ever so slightly better by Qabr is foliage. It's unfortunate to say, but I have to admit there aren't as many trees in Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure as there should be, for the specific setting of the countryside around the Alps. Searching 'Alps countryside' on Google Images tells the entry isn't as faithful to its setting as Qabr is. The overview tells me the trees should be clustered in focused chunks distanced by clean grassy fields. Qabr breaks its barren land with patches of palms, wild shrubs and bright flowers, which works far better than if one had just plopped some palms and called it a day. This is in striking contrast to Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure, which hardly has any variety.

The second thing executed better, at least as far as I can tell, is the landscape itself. This includes terra-painting and terra-forming. The most terra-painting Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure used was touching up the tops of the Alps mountains themselves. It's easy to notice that right below the snow is grass. Just grass. This is probably not realistic, let alone accurate. There should probably be a rock texture wherever the land rises this abruptly. For Qabr, the general land is flat, with patches of dirt and dirty grass here and there, covered up by aptly chosen foliage. A lot of people would have omitted using any other texture except sand when faced with a desert-based theme, but this shows some good thought was put into the entry. It makes Qabr seem like Ancient Egypt, from a time when there was at least some greenery around the Nile and such. Something like the new Assassin's Creed title coming this year.

The third thing has to be the architecture. Looking at each individual building in Dueling Bobs at Alps Adventure, I'm rather impressed. Creating buildings with that much detail must be hard. While the individual buildings are great (not all of them; I especially don't like the station itself. It's hardly as detailed as something like the Ice Cream Cafe), I'm confused by the lack of detail around everything else. What happened? Did you plop the buildings and forget to create some details around them all? I'm almost let down, because it would have been amazing if all the street level work was as detailed as the buildings themselves. This is where Qabr outshines the other entry (I'm tired of saying the whole thing by now; what a mouthful). Every little space has so much love for the Egyptian theme in there, that everywhere you look, there is something to check out. You'll have just been done looking at the brilliant fountain/waterfall and you'll find an Ancient Temple that just reeks atmosphere. Outside the building will be statues emanating this ominous feeling of some sacred culture. If this doesn't capture the feeling of being in the Ancient Egyptian Empire, I don't know what will. 

To conclude, I must pick Qabr as the entry with the most amount of effort and love. It's a shame this isn't a full-NCSO entry, as that could have made me respect this far more. Nonetheless, it's obvious it uses only the most minuscule of pieces that don't distract from the over-all 'vanilla' feeling. The architecture is brilliantly detailed, and no corner is left unfinished. It doesn't feel overwhelming, which is something a lot of work suffers from. The colour palette is focused, with streaks of bright oranges, greens and blues to break the tan everywhere.
Currently working on a fictional Italian non-park. Expected release date: Soon™

[Image: QLvoQOM.png]
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#4
Hi everyone, just wanted to say thank you for the CC, I'm still learning. Wasn't aware of the anonymous policy but it makes sense so i'll definitely keep it anonymous in any future entries. I am curious (not being a smart a**) but has Qabr been here before or something? I noticed Chris said he's glad to finally see the finished product. It just confuses me on the anonymous policy that Qabr was mentioned as being revamped or upgraded from being seen before. Like I said, not trying to over step my boundaries or be a smart butt just seemed like it was seen before. Also it seems like maybe I should dust off my copies of rct1 and rct2 and start playing those again Wink    Best of luck to everyone, it appears to me that everyone worked hard on their entries. I know I spent a month working on mine. Hope everyone has a great weekend!
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#5
@PurvisBrad - I commonly help people while they are working on their builds for the competition, so it's quite common for me to know who has entered what (although I don't disclose that information while the competition is ongoing). This was one such case. Other people that enter the competition also share their projects with other members on messaging services (such as Facebook, Discord, or Skype) in order to receive CC during the build and make it better so that it's the highest quality possible once it reaches the competition.

The only time the anonymity breach becomes an issue is when people knowingly disclose the information in their entry (such as blatantly saying which entry is theirs on the voting screen, or in the subsequent thread attached to the round). The anonymity breach is a rare thing (normally), but when it does occur it can influence the voting so we try to keep a lid on it, and those that know who made what generally don't disclose such information.
Team CoasterTech

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#6
(Aug 26, 2017, 04:23 PM)ChrisMDB Wrote: @PurvisBrad - I commonly help people while they are working on their builds for the competition, so it's quite common for me to know who has entered what (although I don't disclose that information while the competition is ongoing). This was one such case. Other people that enter the competition also share their projects with other members on messaging services (such as Facebook, Discord, or Skype) in order to receive CC during the build and make it better so that it's the highest quality possible once it reaches the competition.

The only time the anonymity breach becomes an issue is when people knowingly disclose the information in their entry (such as blatantly saying which entry is theirs on the voting screen, or in the subsequent thread attached to the round). The anonymity breach is a rare thing (normally), but when it does occur it can influence the voting so we try to keep a lid on it, and those that know who made what generally don't disclose such information.

Makes sense, I hadn't thought of it in that way. Sorry about that, still learning. I appreciate all the CC trust me it helps. Have a great weekend Chris Smile
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#7
I personally think the rules of the competition need to be updated to state if entries need to be anonymous or not. This issue has been discussed before. I started a post so lets keep the discussion their https://forums.rctgo.com/thread-22798.html

(Aug 26, 2017, 04:23 PM)ChrisMDB Wrote: @PurvisBrad - I commonly help people while they are working on their builds for the competition, so it's quite common for me to know who has entered what (although I don't disclose that information while the competition is ongoing). This was one such case. Other people that enter the competition also share their projects with other members on messaging services (such as Facebook, Discord, or Skype) in order to receive CC during the build and make it better so that it's the highest quality possible once it reaches the competition.

The only time the anonymity breach becomes an issue is when people knowingly disclose the information in their entry (such as blatantly saying which entry is theirs on the voting screen, or in the subsequent thread attached to the round). The anonymity breach is a rare thing (normally), but when it does occur it can influence the voting so we try to keep a lid on it, and those that know who made what generally don't disclose such information.

ChrisMDB
I've known PurvisBrad  for awhile and I really don't think he did this on purpose. ChrisMDB I really believe you know that.
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#8
We are good now. Let us stay on track of the round, and, let the best entry win! Smile
Resuming regularly scheduled programming!
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#9
I will continue to vote in the competition. I just won't reveal any more who I vote for in the comment section . Good luck to everyone who entered.
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#10
You can vote for whichever entry you want without revealing who entered it. It's not like any one of us said, "Oh, this person entered this, and that person entered that," no, none of us mentioned a name without the person revealing himself in the first place. When Chris noted that the person who entered Duelling Bobs, he never mentioned a name, which was left up to the viewer to figure out who the entry was.

The point is, and this is for everyone: Do not self reveal your entry. Period. It gives an unfair advantage <Or> disadvantage to the entrant. Regardless of how bad or good your entry is. Even though there is no rule to keep these rounds anonymous, you should keep it that way to make everything fair.  

That means, vote for which entry is best, and do not bring it up when someone self-advertises themselves. Not everyone will notice, and you exposing the issue is only going to garner more views of that mistake.

Now, please, let us get back to this round.
Resuming regularly scheduled programming!
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