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Thread: General Fan Mission Review And Discussion Megathread

  1. #676
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by Thor02 View Post
    Then i am a bit too paranoid. My bad.

    Where do you see views on a thread & stuff?
    On the main forum index.

    http://www.ttlg.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=100

    Take this one for example. To the right of thread titles you can see replies and views. 25k is no big deal being that there are a ton of threads that are just mission hint threads that get over 30-50k over time, but I'm still happy about it.

  2. #677
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2009
    Location: Situation's changed, Tom.
    I got a question: Can I find somewhere which contests there have been? I only know the Komag contests and I wondered if there were more...

  3. #678
    jtr7
    Guest
    Kamyk's stickied thread has the section for you:
    http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=106781
    Last edited by jtr7; 10th Apr 2009 at 19:16. Reason: "a" silly typo

  4. #679
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by jtr7 View Post
    Kamyk's stickied thread has a the section for you:
    http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=106781
    Thank you, I needed something like that myself for future reviews!

  5. #680
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2009
    Location: Situation's changed, Tom.
    Thank you, jtr7. That are a lot of contests...
    Last edited by PotatoGuy; 11th Apr 2009 at 06:32.

  6. #681
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    I have to ask: when you talk about the voice acting for the mages being really well done, I assume you're talking about the Thief Gold mages - always one of my favourite of the Looking Glass voice sets - and not my voice acting, which I had thought was a bit muffled and hard to understand?

    And on your point about rushed missions - I don't think that mission would ever have existed if it wasn't built in a short time for a contest deadline.
    I mainly put in the "very rushed" disclaimer because I didn't have much time to test it before release, though it turned out mostly all right in the end.

    Admittedly, I had originally planned to build another area, a crypt full of undead, but I ran out of time and wasn't sure what I would have put in there anyway. Without a time limit, I might well have continued down that line of adding more and more areas and never have finished the thing!

    What I always loved about the contest missions was that they are short missions and the authors are usually more willing to experiment with them.


    As for the ghosting issue: I often ghost missions, but for some reason I also found the ghosting in Bad Intentions to be extremely unpleasant and tedious. I think it was because there weren't enough places to hide and you had to constantly wait for the right time to move in very long patrols through narrow and well-lit corridors.

    Personally, I think that forced ghosting should only be applied if it is relatively easy to ghost the mission, or the ghosting is limited to a small plot-critical section - otherwise it should be an optional objective.
    Oh, and it also bugs me when the ghosting objective doesn't warn you when it's been failed, but just quietly gets crossed off (and potentially fails the mission if it's non-optional). If you're going to add a ghosting objective, please put in a little "Ghosting failed!" warning. (I even wrote a script to allow authors to easily build such a setup...)
    Last edited by Nameless Voice; 10th Apr 2009 at 21:47.

  7. #682
    Quick question about the master index of missions in the first post of this thread - wouldn't it make more sense to list missions alphabetically rather than by the "last updated" date? If someone is searching for a mission, they're going to be looking for the specific name of an FM, not a date. As this thread grows over time, it's going to be more difficult to locate a specific mission.

    If someone just wants to catch up on the thread, they can just jump in and find the spot where they last read manually, and read one from there. Just doesn't seem to make much sense to list missions by their review date.

  8. #683
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Alphabetical will probably work better in the long run so I'm sure when I get some time and the list gets a bit larger I'll re-work the index.

    @ Nameless Voice: I thought the voicework for the main mage in your mission (which I assume was your voicework you mentioned? The readable from the mission downloaded from the keep didnt talk about voice actors, I looked) was rather good. It was clear to me and sounded well done - maybe you are being too hard on yourself?

    Also, if the other four mages used voices from Thief Gold that explains why I had never heard them - I never finished my playthrough of gold since discovering Thief 2 shortly after beginning Gold. At any rate, I really enjoyed the voices in your mission.
    Last edited by SneakyJack; 11th Apr 2009 at 02:32.

  9. #684
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nameless Voice View Post
    Personally, I think that forced ghosting should only be applied if it is relatively easy to ghost the mission, or the ghosting is limited to a small plot-critical section - otherwise it should be an optional objective.
    This. Although in some missions I ghost just for fun. Depends on the mission - puzzle heavy missions I usually get handy with the blackjack, because it makes it easier to think about the puzzles, and maybe experiment with a possible solution even if it's on the other side of the map. But for simpler, traditional Thief gameplay missions, I'll generally find them too easy if I don't ghost, because by now I know all the AI exploits etc.

    Also, Brethren: what's wrong with Ctrl+F?

  10. #685
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2007
    Quote Originally Posted by PotatoGuy View Post
    I only like ghosting if:
    1. you have to ghost just in a part of the game, not the whole level. (Like The Mirror)
    2. you have a mission that is easy to ghost (Like T2x: the Redistribution Game)

    Otherwise, I prefer or an optional ghosting objective or just on higher difficulties.

    In other words, some ghosting can be fun in a while, but I don't want to be pushed too much to do it.
    Same here. I generally steer away from FM's that force you to ghost on all difficulty levels, although I did make an exception with the latest contest missions (Bad Intentions and Yume No Rozen). I just don't like being forced to a certain style of play. Ghosters probably don't have this problem - apart from FM's with an objective to kill or knock out a specific character, I can't think of missions that would force you to blackjack people.

    Some FM's have sought a middle path by imposing blackjacking restrictions ("Don't knock out more than X people"), but I don't really like that, either, because it feels extremely gamey. I can't think of any logical explanation why knocking out five people is ok, but knocking out six is not.

  11. #686
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    I hate missions that force you to kill people (e.g. as an objective), because to me it's completely against both the spirit of the game and the character of Garrett.
    I'm okay with having to kill undead, though.

    It's actually something I was considering making a poll on, due to a vague idea for a storyline that was knocking around in my head: do people in general consider Garrett to be absolutely against killing people? Is he "a thief, not a murderer" to everyone?

  12. #687
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2007
    I'm not sure about Garrett being absolutely against killing people - I would imagine that under some extreme circumstances, he could make an exception, but he'd have to have a really good reason. Personally, I never kill humans unless the objectives specifically require it. There have been a couple of times in FM's where I've found some character so repulsive that I wanted to kill them, but of course those FM's had a specific "don't kill anyone" objective.

  13. #688
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2006
    Location: Germany
    As far as I understand the character of Garrett, since he is a thief and almost always carries a sword, he would certainly kill when this would be the only way to survive in a certain situation. Though, he would try anything to never end up in such a situation but if that fails, he would rather kill than get killed.

    On the other side, he would never accept any mission which involves killing someone in the first place. And even if he is forced by someone to kill someone else (e.g. by tripping into a trap), he would rather try to escape the situation than just kill the person because someone said he has to do it.

  14. #689
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2009
    Location: Situation's changed, Tom.
    I agree with Jah and SinisterShadow, but I think if Garrett would meet someone and he knew it is the best to get this man/creature killed (like Karras, The Trickster) he would do it, if the man/creature was a threat for "the safety of the world".

  15. #690
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    The thing that makes Constantine and Karras different in my eyes is that Garrett never kills them directly, he only arranges things so that they will kill themselves - this is especially true in the case of Karras.

  16. #691
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2009
    Location: Situation's changed, Tom.
    The thing that makes Constantine and Karras different in my eyes is that Garrett never kills them directly, he only arranges things so that they will kill themselves - this is especially true in the case of Karras.
    Just came back to this thread to edit my post: I wanted to say it too
    I think Garrett has...less guilty feelings if he kills someone undirectly, without sword/fire arrows/etc.

  17. #692
    jtr7
    Guest
    And he doesn't even kill Gamall, but signs her death warrant, so to speak.

  18. #693
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: Ellerau, Germany
    First of all, thank you SneakyJack for taking your time for writing a review about my FM Sorry to hear that the ghosting challenge didn't match with your playstyle.
    I must bring up that "Bad Intentions" was my first baby and I wanted to include the ghosting objective because I'm afraid without it the mission would have been too easy. I know that not everyone likes ghosting missions, but I'm happy about everyone who enjoyed it. Especially about everyone who enjoyed the background music as this was my own baby too.
    Some bugs I couldn't fix, I'm sorry. No idea why the guard on the ground floor doesn't patrol as he should do or why some AIs switch to alert 3 when Garrett douses a torch.

    Anyway, thanks for your criticism. I'll see what I can make better when I build another mission.

  19. #694
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    Photoshop's auto levels tool can be quite powerful and react quite oddly sometimes when I'm adjusting these screenshots to post. Take a shot from my upcoming "Affairs Of Wizards" entry for example..
    The first thing anyone who does a lot of photography or graphic work will tell you is never use Photoshop's Autolevels. It works per-color channel, so it can very often lead to drastic changes in overall image tone.

    A better option would just be to go to Image->Adjustments->Levels and manually adjust the start end endpoints on the input levels for RGB rather than the individual color channels. To start with, just move them to inwards to the first bump you see in the graph and tweak from there.

  20. #695
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2007
    Location: Germany
    Lord of the Thieves: Attack of the Orcs By Cavalorn
    Released: 2008

    What is the story?: Strange things are going on, Orcs creep through the night and terrify people. They sieged the city of Nahoras and Garrett was contacted by the Keepers to gather information on the Orc attack plan. Now it's up to him to sneak behind enemy lines and find the necessary information. While on his quest, he also needs to find King Elendur's long missing sword: The Flame of the North.

    How does it play?: This mission is a nice sneaker. Lot's of shadows to hide and many places to explore. It is kind of straight forward gameplay without many puzzles or complicated climbing parts. There is a nice variety in the settings: you will travel across battlefields as well as through lava flooded caves, mines and foundries.

    How does it look?: As already written, this FM offers many different places. The castle with all the siege weapons at the beginning was the best looking part of the mission in my opinion. The layout of all other locations was also nice, but most places looked very empty. There are some really big halls in this level but the space is not utilized well. In general they look some kind of empty, almost like a box with some pillars but nothing more. Most places could have used more detail.

    How does it sound?: There is not much sound in this FM, but all sounds fit to the setting and add to the atmosphere. The orc sounds where also nice, it made them really sound like dumb, violent orcs.

    So what is the verdict?: If you like Tolkien's work, you should play this FM of course. I would advice this FM for all people who like mixed settings, especially missions inside caves. In many places the "marriage" between Lord Of The Rings and Thief was believable but there were parts of it I didn't like: electric light does not fit to LotR as well as Hammerite banners or Mechanist statues.

    I recommend to listen to the music from the LotR movies while playing this FM, it will add a lot to the atmosphere!

    Screenshots:



    They wiped away Nahoras defences...



    Khazad-dm



    Great halls



    Balin's last resting place
    Last edited by intruder; 11th Apr 2009 at 21:07.

  21. #696
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by Mirko View Post
    First of all, thank you SneakyJack for taking your time for writing a review about my FM Sorry to hear that the ghosting challenge didn't match with your playstyle.
    I must bring up that "Bad Intentions" was my first baby and I wanted to include the ghosting objective because I'm afraid without it the mission would have been too easy. I know that not everyone likes ghosting missions, but I'm happy about everyone who enjoyed it. Especially about everyone who enjoyed the background music as this was my own baby too.
    Some bugs I couldn't fix, I'm sorry. No idea why the guard on the ground floor doesn't patrol as he should do or why some AIs switch to alert 3 when Garrett douses a torch.

    Anyway, thanks for your criticism. I'll see what I can make better when I build another mission.
    For your first mission that was a very good effort, please don't misunderstand my review when I say that it just wasn't my style - I already know of a few people that have told me they really enjoyed it and as you know everyone is different. Without the forced ghosting objective I would have had a blast with it I'm sure. Sorry that I forgot to mention the background music during my review, I enjoyed it as well. As for the bugs I completely understand - I thought the guard doubling back everytime and patrolling a very small area over and over was peculiar and doubted that you did it on purpose

    I would love to play a reworking of that mission if you ever decide to release one without the ghosting objective and I very much hope that you'll release more missions in the future. I'd love to play them Thank you for your feedback on my feedback so to speak, and thank you for not taking what I said too seriously - you seemed to have understood that my playstyle just didn't fit into the mission and that's exactly right.

    @ Kerrle: I understand completely what you are saying - I don't use autolevels for anything that I need to look just right or anything professional - but for the amount of screenshots I crank out daily for these reviews I simply don't have the time to adjust colors and contrast manually for every image. Usually I still have to adjust levels a bit after using the auto feature, but I just don't have the time to manually do every one when I'm posting 8 shots for each mission a couple missions at a time Thank you for your input though, it is appreciated!

    @ Intruder: Another fine review my friend, thank you so much! You chose a fine mission and hopefully Cavalorn continues the saga!
    Last edited by SneakyJack; 11th Apr 2009 at 22:32.

  22. #697
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: Ellerau, Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    you seemed to have understood that my playstyle just didn't fit into the mission and that's exactly right.
    Yes, I did. Thanks for your answer!

  23. #698
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2007
    Quote Originally Posted by Nameless Voice View Post
    The thing that makes Constantine and Karras different in my eyes is that Garrett never kills them directly, he only arranges things so that they will kill themselves - this is especially true in the case of Karras.
    For Constantine, I doubt Garrett would have been able to kill him directly, anyway (he is a god, after all). For Karras, I don't think Garrett would have had any moral qualms about killing him directly in Soulforge, but even if that had been possible, it made more sense to have him self-destruct: If Karras had been found in Soulforge with a sword in his back, every Mechanist and watchman in the City would have been hunting Garrett down as a murderer, which would have made his life very unpleasant. By having Karras destroy himself, Garrett was able to hide his own involvement and avoid the consequences.

  24. #699
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Damsel In Distress By Dyald
    Released: 2004

    This mission is the selected mission for volume five of Thief: TIS - Click here if you'd like to play it along with the rest of us and share your thoughts!

    What is the story?: After hanging up the ol' lockpicks and becoming a partner in the purchase of an Inn, Garrett was just getting comfortable when his pal Basso's sister went missing during a trip into town for supplies. As you can expect, its time to find out what happened to her and bring her home..

    How does it play?: The gameplay in this mission is alot of fun. You'll explore a small city section and a large mansion (along with some other areas I wont spoil here) and there is alot to see and do. The mansion area is large and full of enemies, so you'll have your work cut out for you.

    There are a few snags along the way in this mission (there are a few rooms where guards are facing the door of a fully lit up room and such) and areas where the AI will go into the motion that they are pushing an alarm button with no alarm button in sight (and consequently nothing happens, this may just be a thief AI bug) but overall you shouldn't have too tough of a time with it. The invisible glowing monsters gave me the most trouble, but they make their appearance toward the end of the mission. Most lights are dousable and the AI patrols are done well enough and spaced out well enough that a blackjacker like me will have a blast KABONGing the daylights out of dozens of enemies. Should ghosting be more your style, you should be able to pull that off here as well.

    The story is interesting and creepy and the architecture (though a little boxy for the most part) leads to a few areas of rooftop shenanigans and overall is built well for gameplay.

    How does it look?:
    Taking the overall boxy architecture into account everything looks well done. The city area is bustling with people and feels active, and the mansion area is large and expansive. One area that the looks do suffer in is the overall scale of everything - most rooms in the mansion area are far too big and feel lifeless and empty, often times a giant room with just a chair in one corner and a desk in the other with huge open spaces in between. That being said, the textures look good and for the most part everything looks great.

    How does it sound?: The author has included some custom conversations in this mission that are well written, but suffer from poor audio quality. The voice acting doesn't really have alot of emotion behind it (though it does just fine) and a better microphone or recording process would have done wonders for the overall quality.

    So what is the verdict?:
    A very fun mission that certainly will not be a waste of your time and may end up being one of your favorites. Recommended!

    Check this one out if you enjoy:
    Mansion missions, city missions, Mechanists, scripted conversations, strong stories, non-human enemies.

    Screens:


    Obligatory SneakyJack Moonlight shot!


    For the most part the guards wont give you trouble until they have a reason.


    This is one of the more furnished rooms, some of them are huge and pretty bare.


    Care for a bite to eat?


    Epic!


    Well this is quite grim.


    Oh great, its coming toward me.


    This is your damsel, and she is most certainly distressed.

  25. #700
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2009
    Location: Situation's changed, Tom.
    SneakyJack, I don't know if you realize it but this is the second time you reviewed this mission in this thread! The third review is the same mission.

    (It's actually good news if you got confused: that means this thread already has so many reviews you don't notice if you review the same missions. Let's hope we get confused a lot; let's hope there will be many mor reviews.)

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