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Thread: Thief 2 FM: The Rebellion of the Builder 2 (06 August 2017)

  1. #101
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2012
    Just completed this epic 12 mission campaign. Very impressive, Gort.
    I am not a fan of futuristic environments in thief, but you made some very fun and very challenging maps.
    The voice acting, even the computer voices, made it seem much more real.
    I think it's better to use a computer voice, than no voice at all.
    Just my preference, but if there were no futuristic (very high tech) content, and if all voice acting were human,
    i would rate this campaign as perfect. A top 5 Thief 2 campaign of all time.
    By the way, I loved the hidden mission Urban Conflicts. I vaguely recall playing a free demo on steam with a similar office story.
    And I loved the homage to various old PC games and old game music. A jolly old blast-from-the-past.
    Based on the final cutscene, I'm looking forward to The Rebellion of the Builder 3. Thanks in advance!

  2. #102
    Member
    Registered: May 2008
    Location: Southern,California
    just replayed this since launch,amazing but i want to post the issues i had on some missions,missions where i have to go to hammer factory to over hear conversation did not work,still was not able to do that ice slide=wish it would have been a rope arrow thing instead,also having to do mine craft world in order to get to top part to hit the statues somehow became broken ,when i got back my weapons and all items were gone,so i was curious and went back to mine craft world and saw my compass,sword and 1 flare in underground area but was not able to get back to castle second time=should have been a way to bypass that to get directly to statue area/via hidden passage from using explosive on a wall to lead you to statue area,mine craft should have been separate bonus areaohh the girls speed should be a bit slower in my view,made garrett feel like a snail=aka the master thief

    over all i loved all the missions ,the variety was epic,i hope one day there is a trotb 3,maybe revamp that batman map as that seems like a great start area for the next installment?

  3. #103
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    Welcome, everyone. I have finally beat RotB 2. It was my second playthrough. The first one was a disaster. But after few hundreds FM, I decided to play it and still after a lot of frustration beat it. I really liked the graphic here. Especially Smelter Volcano with it's rising flames. That was great. Music was also good. Yours voice acting, GORT, was first class. There were some really fun riddles and obstacles to beat (like the Crayman at the bottom of the water in Mission 9 or toolbox room from final mission). King's Request was OK mission, maybe because I haven't too much problem with it. Garret Nightmare was an interesting challenge. I also liked Mission 7 (because it reminded me my favorite mission from first RotB - Mystic Estate). But my absolute favorite mission is the final mission - Falling Albatros. It has perfect balance between amount of content and size of the mission. It also has interesting obstacles plus interesting innovations in it. I like it a lot.

    But this FM has also a lot of weaknesses:

    1. Too much walking

    In this FM I had a lot of moments of running through long and empty corridors or streets. And it was always boring. In Mission 1 ruins are after really long gorge. In Mission 2 at the beginning there is choice between 2 paths (both long). Mission 4 presents walking from one end of the city to another. Add to that backtracking and you have hours of just running from one place to another. That's tedious.

    2. Lack of content

    In most of the mission I felt that they were incredibly empty. Missions are big and after KO/killing opponents there is really not much to do. For example: Mission 4 is really big city. After KOing everybody, there is few loot pieces, 4 requests (4 NPC), guard and Queen... and that's pretty much all. Also there is a lot of hidden places with no reward in these places. For example: in Mission 4, I found entrance to roof with a single Mechanist engineer which happened to be a dead-end with no reward. Really dissapointing.

    Another part is lack of loot. These cities must be really poor if even King's Castles doesn't have any loot. And I know that Saria can't steal, but still there should be a lot more loot to tempt her into taking it and fail the mission. In King Brian's Castle there is one loot vase and Saria doesn't see any problem in taking it. This can be easily explained - Loot Owners are long time dead, so taking it isn't stealing anymore. And this castle look very rich. So why in the world there is so small amount of loot? In mission 10, 1000 loot requirement is equivalent of... 2 chests. This is just a joke, right?

    3. Too many mazes

    I know you like mazes, GORT. But there is just too many. Starting from Mission 3, where Spider Caves are mini mazes and further Tree Beat maze. In Mission 4 city is like a maze with a lot of dead-ends. Mission 5 and again Spider Mazes. Mission 7 - random Spider Maze at the end of Keeper Trial. Mission 9 has City Ruins with a lots of undead. On my first playthrough, after one hour of running through the city, I found underground tunnel. Thinking that I'm finally gonna do progress, used it and exit it at the very beginning of the mission. So I skipped this mission. Mission 10 has fire maze near the end. And just because it was another maze, I immediatelly skipped the mission. I was of course aware that I was at the end of the mission. And let's not forget about secret missions. Garret Nightmare is a Markham Isle visible upside-down and there is a lot of darkness and fog. This makes it into interesting maze, but still a maze. Solctice is one gigantic maze which has another maze inside it. Urban Conflict has completely empty.Wolfenstein level. And because everything looks the same, I got lost here. And let's not forget about Mission 5 secret area. Which is... Ice Maze. This FM should be renamed into Rebellion of the Maze Builder.

    4. Killing

    There is a lot of killing going on. There are killing rooms. On my first playthrough I hated Red Water Area in Mission 2. It was 30 min of quicksaving and quickloading in order to shoot all frogs. Really annoying. On my second playthrough Haunted Library from Mission 9 was absolutelly the worst experience. On top of that in some locations, you really need to kill every enemy. For example: killing spiders in Spider Caves or killing all undeads from Castle in Mission 9. And that's because Saria is too fast to move silently on loud surface, so I was forced to fight head-on. And there is only one healing fruit in the whole mission.

    Another problem with killing is - I am allowed to kill human in most of the mission. In RotB 1 on expert it was forbidden by objective. I don't get it why killing people is allowed.

    5. Key hunting

    Another huge problem. A lot of keys or important items are placed in really random places. For example Red Water Plant Key can be found in Warehouse. There is no readable informing about that. One more thing. The fact that key for Water Plant was found in Warehouse means that other keys doesn't need to be found at Water Plant. Good luck running around and searching every pixel of this mission. And by the way Yellow Key is hidden behind random stuff in the random corridor in the Water Plant. It was invisible for me and I gathered it only by blindly frobbing everything. And some keys are randomly placed on floor. The problem with them is that they blend really well into the ground and you need to highlight them in order to notice them. Like for example: a silver gear in Water Plant.

    6. Lazy copy-paste

    There are some instances where you repeat the whole missions without changing too much content. First example is Mission 5 with unchanged Spider Forest. The whole mission really starts at Egypt Area. And that's where Mission 5 should start and end. The second example is Mission 6 where Garret explores a little smaller area of Mission 4. And the only change is lack of requests, 4 new dialogs and 1 new building. That's not too much.

    Another thing is copy-paste of yours older FMs and levels from other games without changing anything or making bad changes. In Urban Conflict there is copy-paste of 2 missions from first RotB. The problem there is no loot, no secrets, some innovations vanished (like statues becoming alive Mechanists). Explorations of these places doesn't really make sense. What's worst GORT Npc walking into me blocking my blackjack and covering my view. That was really annoying. The Wolfenstein level is completely empty. Heretic level has only 1 enemy at the very beginning and also feels empty. Also I had problems with opening doors. The first doors I opened by frobbing upper part of left wall near doors. The other I was frobbing the upper parts of doors. That was weird.

    And last thing - recreation of Solstice. The main problem is that level design is the same, but this is mechanic of Thief 2 and super fast momentum of Saria. Which means I ended by breaking a lot of the rooms in this level. Because some intended solutions just doesn't work in Thief 2. Jumping onto tiny little blocks is even bigger nightmare than Garret Nightmare. Jumping from 1 tiny moving block to another result in 50 deaths or more. Twice I was forced to mantle onto room walls in order to progress. Few times I even was forced to use Run + Strafe jump exploit to jump from a tiny little block. It felt really bad. You even recreated Death Animation, but after dying so many times in a certain rooms I was really annoyed by it. So next time when you decide to recreate something into Thief 2, take into account change of Mechanic and fact that this is FPP game, so platforming is much harder.

    7. Lack of explanation

    This is a problem with just 2 missions.

    The first - Solstice. You don't give any explanation what the bottles in my equipment are for, how to use them (it's not obvious that I need to throw them upward), what keys do, what dynamite do. There is nothing. You just needed to put a scroll into our inventory or put on wall. Is this really too much?

    The second - Mission 11. In the intro, you give me information that there will be manual for me to read and get info how to operate plane. When I first enterd the plane and figured out I have no idea how to operate it, I checked my inventory for manual. Didn't found, so I assumed that there was a book somewhere at the beginning of the mission. I was wrong. Manual didn't exist. I figured out that jump pressed repeatedly risen the plane. But then I got info that I'm too high. So I tried to descend, but I never figured it out how to do that. So I checked the forum and found it that I can strafe. And finally this super hard mission changed into a joke. Was this really to hard to put promised manual into a mission? Really?

    8. Cryptic interactions

    There are some instances in the game when you need to do basic interaction, but because how cryptic they are, the rise into the rank of riddles. For example: in Mission 5 there is stone lever which is activated by placing on it Wind Talisman. Using talisman do nothing and the lever was too high so all my attempts to drop it ended with talisman being dropped on floor. Only thanks to the walkthrough I realized that I can mantle onto this stone lever and drop talisman. Sigh... The second example is in Mission 8 where I need to find door to warehouse. There is no sign which building is warehouse and from outside it looks like a lot of buildings can be a candidates for warehouse. After 1 hour of looking, I took a walkthrough and found out that a reason of my problem was because this door graphic is used usually for background, so normally I was always skipping this door. This was really stupid riddle.

    Another problem is finding secret missions. I know it should be hidden, but no matter what the solutions are so cryptic that only Dromed users or people reading walkthroughs will have chance to find it. It's like you don't give any chance for normal players to uncover them on their own. For example: getting into Garret Nightmare require: gathering random item that spawn in the random moment in the random place and then use it in the random place. Entering Minecraft Zone is even more random: I need to use random password (it doesn't appear anywhere in FM by the way) in library, this will spawn a random item in the random place, use the item in completely unlogical way in another random place to get a key. Using key is the only logical part here. So you ger explosive device and good luck trying it to explode on every possible wall in the mission to finally find the entrance to Secret Zone. Oh, and that's not all. You need to also figure out that you can launch explosive device with flare. In other FMs it's usually count as glitch, not the intended solution.

    9. Story

    Unfortunatelly the story is the weakest part of this FM. There are some really stupid aspects. For example:

    a) in the intro to Mission 4 Garret explains that he saw a statue in Spider Forest. At first I thought he was talking about Statue Room from Smelter Volcano. But when I returned in Mission 5 to Spider Forest, I was legitally confused. I never found any statue in there. Walkthrough time. And angry time. Why in the world you put a really obscure secret behind one of the most dangerous enemies in the game and behind web that can be destroyed only by fire arrow which will alert every nearby spider. Why exactly are you making this kind of a secret part of the main story?!!! I checked this statue can be seen only when standing behind red bastard and looking through web! This is... ARGH!!!

    b) After saving King David form a fake, he explains why Saria should go to Forgotten Kingdom:" Because this place is visible only tonight". It's like situation in the shop:
    Q: Why should I buy this item?
    A: Because it's only available for today.
    What kind of explanation is that?


    Also I have noticed that a story was added to the mission after they were created instead opposite. That's the only explanation I have for how random stories are presented in this pack.

    Mission 1 - time travel plot + escape plot. About Hammerites, you can forget about them because they are never reffered in the future.
    Mission 2 and 3 - escape plot
    Mission 4 - shy entrance of main plot - Mechanist plot
    Mission 5 - random return of time travel plot
    Mission 6 - back to main plot
    Mission 7 - killing undead plot
    Mission 8 - this is the story about fake king
    Mission 9 - back to killing undead plot
    Mission 10, 11 and 12 - main plot

    Oh, and by the way between these different plots there is no connection at all. They are just random stories. So please for the future, first make a story and then think about smallest number of missions needed for it. I really don't want you to just mindlessly try to beat record of how many missions can be released in 1 FM.

    10. Voice acting

    I mentioned that I liked yours voice, GORT. Especially during countdown in Urban Conflict. King Brian's voice was also OK. But I didn't mentioned that all other voices are just terrible. Townsfolk and Mechanists sounds like machines. I believe that it maybe because they were recorded through IVONA or something like this. And the final effect is bad. Sigh... I think it would be even better if only you put your own voice into other roles.

    Also I'm not a fan of Saria voice is so low. She's a warrior, so I expected her voice to be louder than Garret's. But it's opposite.

    11. Nostalgia

    The last weakness is more personal and it is based entirely on nostalgia. So long time ago, I played RotB 1. I beated few times and I had a lot of fun. Missions were really long with a lot of content, lots of loot and secrets, variety of mean traps and really interesting enemy placement. All this was amazing. Of course game wasn't perfect - there were some bugs. The most interesting was in Mission 3: after getting loot requirement I took Card to Mechanist Church and... mission ended prematurely. Some keys were too well hidden and some switches were invisible. But the amount of fun I had made these problems not affect my fun too much.

    So, when I started playing RotB 2, I was secretly expecting the same gameplay like in first game. Unfortunatelly, sequel didn't even tried to fill any of my expectations and presented completely different gameplay. Through the whole game I was making comparisons with RotB 1 and this sequel always was much worser. I even started to think, why even author decided to call it Rebellion of the Builder 2? This FM has nothing to do with first game. There is no connection in the story. There is no connection in the gameplay. So why did he do that? The only connection is... the author of this FM - GORT.

    That's why, I'm not looking forward for RotB 3. It's true this FM has potential. But it's more frustrated than fun. For me it was really weak FM and the biggest disappointment.

  4. #104
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: Missoula, MT
    Thank you for this review. I will definitely take note here.
    I really wouldn't say that the story-line was completely disconnected from part one, but it got altered. Instead of having the remains discovered in the future in part 1, he changed the future when he went in the portal. This is why Sir Edward finds the remains at the Maw.

    Anyway, you're right. I did make the missions first. That was a big no-no. Because of that, I went and "Forest Gump" a bland plot to them. As for the city, yeah pretty damn empty. This may be because I made it mostly in OldDark and it was hitting the total brush limit. I should've did more, but my knowledge at the time for NewDark wasn't much and I didn't want to take any chances.

    As for the hidden missions, they were just there as a test. They were pretty much experimental and not required for the player to even play. I even made sure that there were no loot in them. Now for the Solstice mission, I was trying to make it as close to the NES game as possible. If you've never played the game, you should try it to compare it with my version. This one wasn't easy to create.

    About mission 2: Lava can be your friend. Once an AI walks into it, they will die and disintegrate. Except for the fire creatures, of course.

    For mission 11: The info on the controls is in the read me file. I know that's not the best place for it. I should've had it in the mission itself.


    I must say. The more I look back on this FM, the more I think I shouldn't have released it. But it's too late. It's out. Now the big question here...

    Should I try my best to salvage and save the series in TROTB 3, or should I just close the book on it and never look back?

  5. #105
    Member
    Registered: Sep 1999
    Location: Portland, OR
    I hate to say it, but I haven't finished it because of said critiques. But it's worth mentioning now because I believe if you have a vision, and are aware of the flaws, re-release would be so very welcome. I can play through once more and finish it. And you can know that players who come to it later, will see your true vision.

    I don't mind the experimentation. It left me with a quality feeling of exploration and intrigue. I'm a fan for sure, too, so as a fan boy I'd of course like to see reimaginings of the current story and environment.

  6. #106
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2004

    darkloader

    can it be played on darkloader?

  7. #107
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2004
    Location: Germany
    I am not certain. My notes say that one version of v1.22 made problems for me with Darkloader, but I am not certain whether that was the officially released version or rather something I stitched together for my own purposes.

    Did you try playing it with Darkloader? Did you get any error message when Darkloader tried to make the mission ready for use?

  8. #108
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: Missoula, MT
    I can't stress this enough.

    PLEASE DON'T USE DARKLOADER.

    This is a NewDark FM that requires version 1.24 or higher. You'll need either FMSel or NewDarkloader to run it. Darkloader will not load the FM correctly. To get these new FM loaders to run, you'll need to edit the cam_mod.ini file. Notepad should be fine to open it with. All of the settings in there should be labeled.

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