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Thread: General Fan Mission Review And Discussion Megathread

  1. #326

  2. #327
    One thing I've been meaning to ask that I've seen folks talking about here and there - how often do fan mission authors hide loot and items inside crates or barrels that have to be broken to find them?

    I usually always leave crates and barrels untouched in missions but noticed a few people in different threads mention breaking every crate and barrel they see looking for goodies.

    Is this a common thing for fan mission authors to include or a rare thing? Furthermore, anyone have any examples of missions that do this?

  3. #328
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Great. Now I can't get back in
    The Way Of The Sword (OttoJ55) had various ingredients of a potion hidden in crates & barrels.

    But I've rarely seen this sort of thing - it can tend to make ghosting a bit tricky.

  4. #329
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2003
    Location: 11-11-11-11
    Vandal has one, but there is also a readable in the mission that tells you it's there, and suggests why. I generally think that there should be some reason for loot to be inside a sealed object in the game. If it's just scattered loot, then it doesn't make as much sense.

  5. #330
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Malmö, Sweden
    Midnight in Murkbell also has one. There is a readable that mentions it. This way to do it is fine by me, but hiding random pieces of loot in crates without leaving hints is just evil.

  6. #331
    I've never found a piece of loot or a usable item inside a crate - I very, very rarely break them at all unless they break as I'm throwing them aside to get through a passageway. I've never been good at crate stacking (or elevatoring or whatever its called) so I leave those shenanigans up to the experts. If I read something at some point that told me something was inside a crate I've probably skipped it and finished the mission to be honest. Some missions expand and get epic enough in scope that something silly like crate bashing falls by the wayside for me.

    I didn't even know it was possible to hide items inside crates and barrels until someone mentioned it in a mission thread.

    I know its a common thing in FPS games of the past though.

  7. #332
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2001
    Location: Formby, NW England
    There are lots of things FM authors can do, but most of us realise that can and should are not the same.

    E.g. I once considered having books that could not be read if the lights were off. After a brief discussion here, I removed that setup.

    People work out the rules of gameplay in the original missions, and those rules are reinforced in the vast majority of FMs. If such basic things as reading books and smashing crates are to work differently in an FM, there really should be a good reason, rather than a showcase of the author's technical skills.

  8. #333
    Quote Originally Posted by R Soul View Post
    There are lots of things FM authors can do, but most of us realise that can and should are not the same.

    E.g. I once considered having books that could not be read if the lights were off. After a brief discussion here, I removed that setup.

    People work out the rules of gameplay in the original missions, and those rules are reinforced in the vast majority of FMs. If such basic things as reading books and smashing crates are to work differently in an FM, there really should be a good reason, rather than a showcase of the author's technical skills.
    To be honest, the "only reading books in the light" idea would be pretty hilarious to me - even if it did frustrate me at the same time.. its still a funny concept - then again I have a very dark sense of humor.

    You have a very good point - and I guess there should be a basic template of gameplay "rules" that missions should stick to - its fun to deviate once in a while but like you also mentioned it has to be said somewhere that you need to be on the lookout for it when you are playing the mission.

    Another thing I've noticed and wanted to talk about is readables in general. I like readables that display text on the screen in subtitle form directly after frobbing the item rather than the ones that take you to a different screen and cause you to have to exit and such. It just makes for much smoother gameplay - makes me wonder why more authors don't use this method of display.

    Perhaps its just my personal preference - but it just seems so much less time consuming and immersion breaking if the text is displayed directly above the item.

    I know it may not be as dramatic of a read for longer items but I'd rather just frob it a few times while reading and stay inside the normal view.
    Last edited by SneakyJack; 15th Feb 2009 at 11:09.

  9. #334
    L'architecte de Rocksbourg
    Registered: Nov 2005
    Location: Narbonne, France
    Can't agree more with R Soul

    And I understand you'd like readables directly onscreen, it's indeed smoother and would be interesting for gameplay (you have to make sure noone is around when you read). But if the book in question has at least 10 pages of writing, like in my fms for example, what would happen ?
    However, to display text onscreen should be done everytime with little readables : I hate to read a plaque which leads you to a different screen, only to read a room's name.
    Last edited by DrK; 15th Feb 2009 at 11:10.

  10. #335
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    I know it may not be as dramatic of a read for longer items but I'd rather just frob it a few times while reading and stay inside the normal view.
    I have a script that can be used to make such text stay on screen until the player looks away, which is even better than having to frob it a few times. This was used by (and written for) Eshaktaar in Broken Triad.


    I'd also thought of the "Only reading books in the light" idea, it does make sense...

  11. #336
    Quote Originally Posted by DrK View Post
    Can't agree more with R Soul

    And I understand you'd like readables directly onscreen, it's indeed smoother and would be interesting for gameplay (you have to make sure noone is around when you read). But if the book in question has at least 10 pages of writing, like in my fms for example, what would happen ?
    However, to display text onscreen should be done everytime with little readables : I hate to read a plaque which leads you to a different screen, only to read a room's name.
    Is it possible to use a script like the one Nameless Voice made to make a readable display the text onscreen for page one for a few seconds, then change to page two and so on as long as the player doesnt move? Page transitions could be signaled by adding a .... to the end of any page that is about to change.

    I dunno, just an idea. I don't know what is possible in dromed and what isnt.

  12. #337
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    Maybe changing to the second page if you frob it again would make more sense, otherwise you'd have to predict how long it would take the player to read it.

    I always wanted to make readables like in Deus Ex where the readable appears in a window but the game continues in the background.

  13. #338
    Quote Originally Posted by Nameless Voice View Post
    Maybe changing to the second page if you frob it again would make more sense, otherwise you'd have to predict how long it would take the player to read it.

    I always wanted to make readables like in Deus Ex where the readable appears in a window but the game continues in the background.
    Even better, of course - I was just unsure of how far we could push the game engine with this frob specific scripting and whatnot - im sure you pretty much know it inside and out, and after what I've seen in a few fan missions lately it seems anything is possible

  14. #339
    Quote Originally Posted by DrK View Post
    Can't agree more with R Soul

    And I understand you'd like readables directly onscreen, it's indeed smoother and would be interesting for gameplay (you have to make sure noone is around when you read). But if the book in question has at least 10 pages of writing, like in my fms for example, what would happen ?
    However, to display text onscreen should be done everytime with little readables : I hate to read a plaque which leads you to a different screen, only to read a room's name.

    Actually, in some cases I like short readables that take you to a different screen, for example, if it's used to heighten spookiness. The only example I can think of is during Night Three of The Seven Sisters when you find the journal in the portal of chaos and all it says is "Beware, Brothers, the Black Sister is here!" That freaked me out and I was thinking "Oh no, once I exit out of the readable screen back into the game, some terrifying monster's going to attack me!!"

    Anyway, I think the readable screen situation works very well for creepy "It's standing right behind you" instances.

  15. #340
    Moderator
    Registered: Jul 2008
    Location: shalebridgecradle.co.uk
    Since we're voicing our tastes about readables, I like going to another screen when reading a book or scroll because it actually increases the immersion for me. I like the look of the parchment, the darkened edges, the old script, the sound of the pages turning etc. It helps place the player in Garrett's world. When the text just shows up on screen it looks too much like text on a computer screen and breaks the immersion for me somewhat.

  16. #341
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2001
    Location: Formby, NW England
    You also get to read it at your own pace because the game pauses.

  17. #342
    Those are also two great points - and the diversity of play styles and what helps/hinders immersion for different people in different ways is great.

    Its one of those options that if it were easy to make it possible to select either before the missions starts it would make the experience that much more tailored to playstyles. It seems like the more expert-difficulty ghoster types enjoy stopping to smell the roses so to speak (obviously when you spend hours sneaking through shadows remaining completely undetected I doubt you'll have a problem spending a minute or two changing screens to enjoy the story) and folks like myself may enjoy the on-screen approach as I tend to be what I call a "knockout addict" that is always on the move while playing.

    I try my best to stay un-detected while doing so, however. My goal by the end of any given mission is to have blackjacked all guards (and innocents when they are patrolling an area I need to repeatedly go through) without any of them having noticed me. Swordplay is a last resort but I don't mind it. So to get back to my original point - I'm more of a movement oriented sneaker that always likes to be going, going, going - so stopping to change screens breaks my flow pretty heavily. In fact, in missions where I can frob a message and have it appear onscreen - I'm usually moving forward to the next room while reading it.

  18. #343
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2007
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    In fact, in missions where I can frob a message and have it appear onscreen - I'm usually moving forward to the next room while reading it.
    I'm imagine the following scenario while you play an FM:

    You frob a scroll and move on while reading it.
    After hitting the bottom of a pitfall equiped with poisened spears and the screen slowly fading into black, you finish the last sentence of the scroll which warns of poisoned pitfalls in the next room

  19. #344
    Moderator
    Registered: Jul 2008
    Location: shalebridgecradle.co.uk
    ROFLMAO!

  20. #345
    Quote Originally Posted by intruder View Post
    I'm imagine the following scenario while you play an FM:

    You frob a scroll and move on while reading it.
    After hitting the bottom of a pitfall equiped with poisened spears and the screen slowly fading into black, you finish the last sentence of the scroll which warns of poisoned pitfalls in the next room
    I would appreciate the dark humor in that very much and hope that there will be more similar pitfalls ahead of me in this mission

  21. #346
    With thief being reviewed by Zero Punctuation and now having a thread posted on one of the largest forums on the internet (somethingawful.com for anyone keeping score at home) it seems as if the thief series is getting another popularity boom as of late - and that can only be a good thing. I see that David even posted in that thread - there were lots of mentions of TTLG and he let everyone there know that he runs the place

    The word is getting out about the TTLG community and how the fan mission sector is still going very strong - I've seen more mentions of fan missions (by name even!) in the last week than I have in the last couple years in places other than here and fan mission archive sites.

    This is a very good thing, and hopefully it brings us more folks to discuss these works of art and perhaps even a few new authors wanting to create amazing things for us to play.

    Its always been a good time to be a thief fan - but after all these years its still looking up!

  22. #347
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: The Puget Sound
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    With thief being reviewed by Zero Punctuation and now having a thread posted on one of the largest forums on the internet (somethingawful.com for anyone keeping score at home) it seems as if the thief series is getting another popularity boom as of late - and that can only be a good thing. I see that David even posted in that thread - there were lots of mentions of TTLG and he let everyone there know that he runs the place

    The word is getting out about the TTLG community and how the fan mission sector is still going very strong - I've seen more mentions of fan missions (by name even!) in the last week than I have in the last couple years in places other than here and fan mission archive sites.

    This is a very good thing, and hopefully it brings us more folks to discuss these works of art and perhaps even a few new authors wanting to create amazing things for us to play.

    Its always been a good time to be a thief fan - but after all these years its still looking up!
    It has been alomost a year since I started playing Thief FM's again. It has also been over a year since I have played any game other than Thief. I got a game for Christmas that I haven't even opened. Fallout 3 sounds interesting so does the new FarCry. But why? There is so much left to playing and editing Thief missions. I have a fantasy that someday there will be a skit on Saturday Night Live where they are playing Thief characters and the audience will actually understand the humor.
    Maybe....
    Zombies walking and Benny talking.

  23. #348
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2008
    Location: behind your eyeball
    Audience? You know, people who are still mentally healthy are running short ya know and the ones that are fans of Thief have been ones for a reason. Nice fantasy though, I've been dreaming of great stuff too.

    It would be nice to have more members here at TTLG as SneakyJack (since i can't call you Snickers, i might as well stick with the original) pointed out. In time the community will probably grow weak anyway (probably newer PCs, that just cannot handle Thief), but i'm not that sure, if it will ever really die.

    Hmm, apparently it's my nonsense talk day. I better stay quiet for the rest of the 'eve. (Oh and i posted this, cause i just couldn't let it go to waste.)

  24. #349
    Moderator
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: UK
    I don't see Thief dying in my lifetime. A small bonus, perhaps, for getting on a bit. There are a number of people who work very hard indeed at keeping not only the game alive, but the site as well. And I, for one, jealously guard any of half a dozen pcs that will play Thief. Hands off you blackguards! These are mine.

  25. #350
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2009
    Location: Situation's changed, Tom.
    I always feel bad when I think about Thief never getting really known and popular, despite it's such a great game. No one I ever spoke in real life had heard of the game (or gave me the answer: Yes, I know Thief, that's because you keep telling me it's such a great game)

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