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Thread: General Fan Mission Review And Discussion Megathread

  1. #201
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    The Abominable Dr. Dragon By ChiefDreams

    This is the first fan mission from ChiefDreams, and he sure does pack alot of punch into his first outing - you'll find a little bit of everything in this one.

    The Story: You know, there probably is a story somewhere in this mission but I'll be damned if I found it. I was too busy running whilst pants-crapping to have time to stop and read anything, let alone take in the story. I think it has something to do with a crazy doctor that likes to keep all brands of things that will kill you in his castle - but thats just what I got from it. Which brings me to..

    The Gameplay: This one is HARD. You'll spend your time running, and running alot. You'll run from treebeasts. You'll run from hammer haunts. You'll run from thieves and guards teaming up on you. You'll run (swim) from evil eyed fish that will try to kill you. You'll run from skulls that shoot multiple projectiles at once that absolutely destroy your health and you'll run from statues that come alive to give you a good trouncing as well. There are so many things in this fan mission that are out to kill you - you'll barely have time to breathe let alone take in the surroundings and story. God help you if you are a ghoster, I'd like to hear how you make it through this mission without being caught, haha.

    That being said, there are some fun things in this one. Once in a while you will see a thief in battle with a skull or a guard (when they arent teaming up to kill you) and AI vs AI battles are always exciting to watch regardless of the outcome. There are tons of surprises that I wont ruin for you here - good luck getting to see them all. I played on easy and made it through the mission with two shields left trying to hide the best I could and after using a healing potion. I'm not even going to attempt it on hard or expert - I don't hate myself that much.

    The looks: This is a great looking mission once you get inside the castle. The outside looks a little plain and blocky, but the inside is very nicely textured with tons of strange S&M style art and interesting color choices. The stained glass windows you'll see in one of the screens are particularly nice to look at and well done. The textures on some of the monsters you'll encounter (such as one I have not mentioned to keep it a surprise - hint, you'll hear zombie noises) are really well done.

    Overall this mission is well done with some impressive enemies and effects. Its definitely more combat oriented than a sneaker - so keep that in mind going into it. I died half a dozen times just getting through this one for screenshots.

    This is one that may divide people into love-it or hate-it - so i'd really like to hear what everyone thought about this mission after playing it. It'll be interesting to see more perspectives.

    Screens:


    Welcome to hell. To be honest, I'm surprised the torches and gates are not out to kill you as well.


    Inside hell castle.


    This guy was pretty tired due to his back ache.


    Great looking windows that probably try to kill you, I didnt get close enough to find out.


    The entrance from above.


    Evil everywhere!


    Wonder what happens if I break this gla..


    Oh damnit! The two dimensional effect on the hammer haunts was actually very cool.

  2. #202
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Circle Of Strain By Mokkis (Converted to T2 by Jimmy)

    Whats the story?: The story here is pretty simple. There is a noble named Lord Jack (great name!) that has the ever so stolen Serpentile Torc and you are just the guy to take it off his hands.

    How does it play?: This mission was a conversion from its original form that was created way back in '99, so I've taken the time at which it was released into account. That being said, this mission is a pretty nice sneaker that will pose a bit of challenge - but for the most part its very basic Thief gameplay. Guards aplenty, good shadows and lighting and a decent amount of loot. What more do you need? The no frills approach does not work against it in this case. A word of warning: I did experience a slight graphic stutter during my time playing this mission - I dont know if it was my system or the fan mission itself - but look out for that.

    How does it look?:
    For a Thief 1 mission released in 1999, this one looks pretty good. I don't know if Jimmy added or removed textures when it was converted, but it still looks alright to me. Its obviously not going to hold up to a mission like The Seven Sisters or Ink and Dust - but being released nearly 10 years before those missions has to be taken into consideration. Again, very basic but does well enough on looks.

    Whats the verdict?: This mission is a fun way to spend 30 minutes to an hour of your time. Its not the best looking or most technically impressive fan mission - but it is an oldie I can recommend. Give it a try!

    Screens:


    Gonna need to find another way in, im afraid.


    The main hall.


    Group naptime!


    Wonder if he'd rather have drinks and laugh than fight. Doubt it.
    Last edited by SneakyJack; 4th Feb 2009 at 17:22.

  3. #203
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2008
    I loved Dr Dragon, there was a real Hammer Horror atmosphere to it. You could kill the skulls with broadheads, which made things easier.

  4. #204
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by Swiz View Post
    I loved Dr Dragon, there was a real Hammer Horror atmosphere to it. You could kill the skulls with broadheads, which made things easier.
    I managed to kill one out of sheer panic with the blackjack - but the other one (or two, I can't remember how many there were) got into a tangle with a thief and a guard and didn't make it through it thankfully. I do know you can kill the statues with enough arrows (five I think on easy) so that saved me a time or two. Thanks for taking the time to post your thoughts!

  5. #205
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Collector's Greed By DewFreak
    Released: August 2001

    Whats the story?:
    We're once again asked to go into a rich guy's estate and procure an item - this time a golden skull.

    Hows it play?: This one is pretty fun. The difficulty is very low and you should have no problem ghosting or blackjacking till your hearts content. Not many surprises in this one with most of it being typical thief gameplay at its very basic level. This is another much older fan mission, so take that into account as well.

    Hows it look?: Looks wise everything is very plain and blocky. This one isnt the best looking fan mission - it it is not helped by the fact that many of the rooms are completely empty or void of anything at all. Even in the rich nobles home the walls are bare and there is not much to look at. A couple areas had me thinking "why did you rush this mission out? With a little bit more work it could have been so much better".

    Whats the verdict?: This mission will not take you long at all and really doesnt have much that you'd be missing if you didn't take time out of your day to play it. For those who want to play every mission I'd say give it a try - but if you've got limited fan mission time there really are many better choices to spend your time playing. Fun, but ultimately could have been much better.

    Screens:


    The archer on the left longingly waits to be accepted by the guards.


    Needless to say, this guy spotted me.


    Private eyes.. are watching you. (I'm sure no one gets these song references or even reads these image captions)


    A look at the small city area.


    An archer to your left. "A yard of pain for you, taffer!"


    I just.... why? Really, why?

  6. #206
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Lyon, France
    a reference to the secret area in the TG keeper training, I believe. Every fm should have one.

  7. #207
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Continuing with the Old School Mission celebration brings us to:

    Dyers' Eve by Metalhead
    Released: October 2001

    Whats the story?: After a bad run in with The Brotherhood Of The Raven Garrett looks to extract some revenge. Garrett needs information on the brotherhood - and befriends a local "contact" who'll cough up some names or locations in exchange for a Navigation Globe from an ancient temple. There is always a catch.

    Hows it play?: As far as spooky missions go - this one is fairly scary. You'll know by the loadout screen (tons of holy water, fire arrows and such for sale) that you are in for quite a bit of the undead - and this mission does not disappoint on that front. A mixture of zombies and haunts will keep you busy and afraid. There are some puzzles that can be frustrating if you don't know what to do, but for the most part its fairly straightforward loot-without-being-found type stuff. My advice: Save a few fire arrows for a rock puzzle you'll encounter.

    Hows it sound?: This mission should be praised for its custom voicework for the zombies and haunts you will encounter - the female zombie was especially frightening sounding but also funny at the same time. Lines like "Do you think I'm pretty?" and "Kill me" (and after you do the deed "Thank you") remind me of system shock. I don't know if these lines were from somewhere else or custom recorded, but they were impressively done. Really adds alot to an otherwise typical undead mission.

    Hows it look?: For being released in 2001 this mission looks pretty good. Everything has the run down feel you'd expect, and plenty of great touches here and there (broken pieces of the surroundings, statues, bodies) really add production value to the mission. For the timeframe it was released, this one looks good.

    Whats the verdict?: I'm not a fan of undead missions but must give this one credit where it is due: This is a great undead themed mission. If that sort of thing suits you, you will not be disappointed with this one and should give it a spin.

    Screens:


    Immature of me to mention that this building looks phallic? It does. Sue me.


    A dead keeper, a note and holy water in the corner. Some serious undead shenanigans are going down and we both know it.


    This room looked great.


    Things just got more complicated, im afraid.


    By this point I had run out of supplies and was armed with nothing but a prayer.

  8. #208
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by all View Post
    a reference to the secret area in the TG keeper training, I believe. Every fm should have one.
    I guess I figured thats why it was there - I just don't get why it was there.


  9. #209
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    The Eye Of Ruthaford By William The Taffer
    Released: July 2001

    Whats the story?: A simple mission where Garrett is tasked with breaking into Ruthaford's estate and bringing back with him The Eye.

    Hows it play?:
    This mission is somewhat short and fairly simple, but it looks great and is very fun to play. The gameplay here is very good for a smaller mission. There is alot of marble to deal with and you may have a tough time ghosting this one, but there will be no frustration to be found if you place a few moss arrows well enough.

    Hows it look?: This is a great looking mission. Everything is well decorated, the textures used are good and there are a couple areas that really look great (the bar area and the standup comedian to name a few) so you'll have no problem enjoying your surroundings in this one.

    Hows it sound?: The opening conversation between the guards is hysterical. I don't know where this came from (Thief 1 or 2 Original Mission?) but its between a guard coming down with a cold and another guard who seems to always get him in trouble - and it isn't to be missed. One of my favorite guard conversations of all time. Otherwise, not many custom sounds in this one.

    Whats the verdict?:
    This is a short mission that will take you less than 30 minutes but packs alot of fun gameplay into a smaller mission area. I highly recommend this one if just to experience the humor within. There are alot of funny touches that I did not mention here.

    Screens:


    The thermometer on the fireplace made me laugh.


    This guys neck is not broken, he was just in mid yell toward me.


    Oh joy, another basketball secret reference.


    Keeping the rotting zombie next to your jewels sounds like a brilliant business model.


    Have you ever seen anything more beautiful in your life? I wish every mission had a stash like this.


    Times of peril indeed.


    This fellow had an almost supernatural ability to sleep sitting up yet still be in bed. The shelf on the right side of the room was facing the wall as well - making it worthless and making me question the sanity of this fellow.

  10. #210
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Well, that makes around 50 missions by my count that I've personally touched on so far in this thread - I hope I haven't worn out my welcome as of yet.

    I'm gonna put the brakes on the reviews for short time - I want to have some discussion going as well and take a small break from doing them so I don't burn myself out.

    A couple questions to start the discussion off:

    Does anyone know where the conversation from the beginning of Eye Of Ruthaford came from? I don't recall hearing that one in the original missions unless my memory is just hazy, which is probably the case.

    Also: Anyone remember the first fan mission that really hooked them and got them into the fan mission scene? I've been really trying to remember what the first fan mission was that really got me but I'm having trouble coming up with which one it was. I know it must have made quite an impact on me for me to be posting screens and thoughts on them years later!

    Thanks to everyone thats been following this thread so far.

  11. #211
    Keeper of FMs
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Meraux, LA
    My first FM was T2X. I was completely blown away by it. Nightwalker encouraged me to try the others and helped me get going. She recommended Christine's missions, so those were the next ones I played - Lord Ashton, Night Falcon, Curse of the Falcon and the Lady Lotti Series. Given those were the first ones I played, it's no wonder I was so easily hooked!

  12. #212
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by pavlovscat View Post
    My first FM was T2X. I was completely blown away by it. Nightwalker encouraged me to try the others and helped me get going. She recommended Christine's missions, so those were the next ones I played - Lord Ashton, Night Falcon, Curse of the Falcon and the Lady Lotti Series. Given those were the first ones I played, it's no wonder I was so easily hooked!
    That is an amazing way to get your start in fan missions indeed - 13 incredible missions in a row will certainly get you into the community I'd think. I didn't play thief 2x until far after it was released, but soon saw the error of my ways after my first playthrough, thats for sure.

    I believe my first fan mission could have been a Christine mission - I'm still trying to remember which one it was. That being said - I think I'm going to make my way through Christines missions next for screens and impressions - its a tough job but someone has to do it!

    All joking aside, playing through her missions and series will be pure thief gameplay heaven mission after mission. I'm looking forward to it.

  13. #213
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Malmö, Sweden
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    Anyone remember the first fan mission that really hooked them and got them into the fan mission scene?
    The first FM I played was Willow Island. I thought it was good, but it didnīt really hook me.

    I donīt really remember which mission actually hooked me. I think it must have been somewhere among these four (those were up next, I donīt remember the order...):

    Bloodstone Prison
    Hush, Hush, Sweet Harlot
    Cult of the Resurrection
    Lord Edmund Entertains

  14. #214
    Classical Master 2008
    Registered: Jun 2002
    Location: Civitas Quinque Ecclesiae HU
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    Also: Anyone remember the first fan mission that really hooked them and got them into the fan mission scene?
    Well, I first played Gathering at the Bar. But what really hooked me was The Death of Garrett - which is understandable, since when I discovered The Circle, I started to download the missions based on their hammer score rating, and at the time, TDoG was on top with a score of 9, if I recall correctly. It still holds up very well, I believe - there is some cool architecture, the gameplay is good and accommodates different playstyles, and there is also a good background to it.

    Later on came Lord Edmund Entertains, The Vigil and, of course, the Circle of Strain series (the third part being probably the best). That, and Calendra's Cistern, which has remained my personal favourite over all the years. Interesting how those early FMs tended to have briefing movies much more often than they have today.

  15. #215
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2007
    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyJack View Post
    Also: Anyone remember the first fan mission that really hooked them and got them into the fan mission scene? I've been really trying to remember what the first fan mission was that really got me but I'm having trouble coming up with which one it was. I know it must have made quite an impact on me for me to be posting screens and thoughts on them years later!
    I first started playing FM's in late 2003 - I remember going through quite a few around New Year when I was recovering from pneumonia and confined within four walls. I can't remember what the very first one was - I'm generally terrible at remembering the names of FM's, anyway - but a couple of early ones I remember were The 7th Crystal and Saturio Returns Home. I remember one prison break mission (Bloodsports, maybe?) and one that was entirely in greyscale, with a female protagonist, where the enemies included haunts that used the spider soundset. Can't even remember whether it was a T1 or T2 FM. LoanStar played Garrett in quite a few missions in those days.

  16. #216
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2007
    Location: Germany
    I love this Thread, SneakyJack.

    The first FM i played was "Hammerhead: Return to the Docks " for Thief 1 by Gongchong , a really good FM.

    And for Thief 2 was "Alliance" by HipBreaker my first FM, which i played.
    Thanks HipBreaker for this really good FM.

  17. #217
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Malmö, Sweden
    Quote Originally Posted by Jah View Post
    one that was entirely in greyscale, with a female protagonist, where the enemies included haunts that used the spider soundset. Can't even remember whether it was a T1 or T2 FM.
    This must be Ranstall Keep, by Dashjianta. Itīs a tough a tricky FM to find your way through. Originally for T1, but there is a T2 version out as well. I think Iīve played it, but I donīt remember if was in greyscale as well.

  18. #218
    Saturnine
    Guest
    Death of Garrett was my first FM too I remember being impressed at the grand scale of it, very high ceilings and wide corridors, good stuff.

    The Order of the Vine was my second FM and is still one of my all time top FMs today.

    And third was Calendras Cistern, I love that mission, I remember I emailed Purah (didn't know him before then) and asked 'how does she get up into that tower when theres no stairs?'
    and he said 'I don't know.....magic?'

    but I think he meant 'f**k off*

  19. #219
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Great responses everyone - its interesting to read where everyone got their starts in the realm of Fan Missions. There are so many (obviously in the hundreds) that I'd imagine most everyone starts out somewhere different.

    Another thing I was thinking of is the moments in fan missions when you are truly stunned at what the author has pulled off.

    I think the first example of this for me was Sterlino's "Horns Of Canzo" mission with the in-game shop. I don't know why I thought that was so awesome but it had been something I always wanted to see in a fan mission, and seeing it come to life was great.

    Things like in game cutscenes and the camvator tricks were really cool every time they were used too, I was always very amused by the camera trickery that you can pull off in dromed. Then you have missions like Broken Triad, Ink and Dust and Mission X that completely bend the dark engine until it almost breaks but somehow manages to keep it together long enough to show us something amazing.

    I think my favorite fan mission trick that doesn't get used nearly enough is AI vs. AI battles that turn out different every time. I really like seeing them play out and predicting who will win. Seems like the older fan missions used this much more than the new ones - and I'd like to see those AI battles make a return.

    What kinds of Fan mission special effects, scripting or trickery do you enjoy?

  20. #220
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2007
    Location: Finger paintings of the insane
    Playing Seven Sisters for the 1st time. Holy crap! This is a great mission, so far (finished Prologue and an hour in Night One). Incredible, huge city w/lots to find and do.

    I don't want it to end.

    Anything similar that can even hold a candle to this?

  21. #221
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by gunsmoke View Post
    Playing Seven Sisters for the 1st time. Holy crap! This is a great mission, so far (finished Prologue and an hour in Night One). Incredible, huge city w/lots to find and do.

    I don't want it to end.

    Anything similar that can even hold a candle to this?
    Pirates Ahoy!'s first level is very similar to the city style that Lady Rowena used in the Seven Sisters. Doesn't have the horror aspect, but it is definitely as fun. I'd give that one a shot next

    If you've not tried the first two missions of The Night In Rocksbourg series they are similar city style levels as well.

    I've screen shotted all of the missions mentioned here in this thread, so you can jump to the original post to see if they are your cup of tea.

    Broken Triad (mission 1), The Ashen Age and Thief Trinity are all city levels that may work for you as well.
    Last edited by SneakyJack; 5th Feb 2009 at 19:45.

  22. #222
    Clearinghouse
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Siberia, Russia
    gunsmoke, also really good, interesting city missions Some Shopping and Snobs 2.
    For TG The Eternal Candle.

  23. #223
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Location: netherlands
    I really love this thread.

    about the drunk guard lines in the librarian: the are done by dlw6. I really love them, they really made me rofl when I first heard them

    "You ever wonder why zombies don't talk? is it because their brains are rotten and they don't know how or because their tongues are rotten and they cant '? "

    "that's a funny word..taffer.. taf this, taf that, taf at all the taffin' ..ehm.. taffy?? "
    Last edited by nightshifter; 6th Feb 2009 at 01:57.

  24. #224
    I can't remember what the very first FM I played was, but I'm pretty sure that The Inverted Manse by Sledge was what got me hooked on FMs in general. Nice scary zombie mission with some beautiful visuals, awesome new weapons and equipment and one seriously creepy pagan area. That creepy chanting and the "room of doors" will haunt me forever.

    I'd screencap it, but I have no sceencapping software, I'm afraid.

  25. #225
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    I'm glad you are enjoying the thread Nightshifter and thanks for contributing!

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Taffer View Post
    I can't remember what the very first FM I played was, but I'm pretty sure that The Inverted Manse by Sledge was what got me hooked on FMs in general. Nice scary zombie mission with some beautiful visuals, awesome new weapons and equipment and one seriously creepy pagan area. That creepy chanting and the "room of doors" will haunt me forever.

    I'd screencap it, but I have no sceencapping software, I'm afraid.
    No worries, its on the list

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