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Thread: TDP20AC Mission Heart And Soul (11/30/2018)

  1. #1
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Fields of bluegrass

    TDP20AC Mission Heart And Soul (11/30/2018)

    This thread is for any discussion or questions related to the mission Heart And Soul by StinkyKitty & McTaffer.
    You can download the mission HERE or HERE.
    The contest thread is HERE.

    Please give clues instead of outright solutions when helping others and use the spoiler tag when you do this.

    Remember that this mission, and by extension every mission made for the contest, is for THIEF GOLD. As such, do not load it with Thief 2! It is highly recommended you do not use the Enhancement Pack and/or HD texture packs to play this mission. It is also recommended you uncheck all optional features TFix comes with if you update to the latest version of the full executable.

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    What an amazing mission this was!
    As a huge fan of StinkyKitty's missions, I was really looking forward to this one, and I was curious what a collaboration with another author would bring. And oh boy!
    The layout is superb. There are countless passages presenting options to go into every direction. Lots of intense sneaking too. I almost managed to ghost it, and I'll definitely do that on my second playthrough.
    The atmosphere is great. I'm not a fan of colored lighting in Thief 1, but once I saw that you desaturated the textures to accomodate for it, I knew you guys were fully aware of what you are doing!

    A few questions:
    Is anything supposed to happen once you play all harps? I feel like there is a big secret there, but I missed it.
    Is taking the Mystic's Soul supposed to be as easy as it is? I didn't have to turn off any machinery, just grabbed if from right under the mage's nose.

    And finally, if it's not a secret, who was resposible for what?

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2016
    Location: The Warp
    As far as I'm aware, nothing happens when you play all the harps, though you may have noticed that something happens with the one on the statue near the front gate. However, I could be wrong as Stinkykitty was in charge of that entire concept.

    I wouldn't say that taking the Mystic's Soul is a walk in the park, but yes, it's supposed to be taken more or less without consequence. The original concept for this mission had significant consequences for trying to take both the Heart and Soul, but there wasn't enough time to properly implement that part of the mission, since it made the level nearly three times as large in terms of physical size alone.

    I don't think it's particularly a secret as to who was responsible for what.
    Most importantly, we got a jump start by using an abandoned mission by Sliptip. The long front corridor with the glass ceiling, the maze, the back courtyard, the front courtyard, and the gatehouse are what's left of that project, though all heavily modified. The maze is probably the most intact part of the base.

    As for the rest of the mission, it was initially pretty evenly split in terms of architecture. Stinkykitty did the whole exterior and outbuildings and I was responsible for the interior. I eventually decided to add a dungeon/caves area as well. Because of technical limitations/responsibilities for school, Stinkykitty has pretty much had the reigns since September. Most of my original areas have been modified to look and feel much better than they originally did, and he did basically the entire third floor and significantly expanded a throwaway catacombs area I made into an integral part of the mission. Because of my lack of skill with AI, any of the crazy new creatures you see are his work. I'd say that the story was mostly me, but Stinkykitty put in some significant details including the harpist subplot. Most of the actual writing/readables you see was done by Stinkykitty, however- much like the rest of the mission I drafted them and he polished them.

    I feel like I've been painting spoiler tags over everything, but then again you can never be too careful.
    Last edited by McTaffer; 3rd Dec 2018 at 18:43.

  4. #4

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com
    This mission is incredible

    I'm trying to figure something out. What do these capacitors do? They focus on this gem, but it can't be frobbed, and there seems to be some chamber underneath, but I can't access it

    As an aside, there is another amazing Thief 1 FM with the same title that's also worth a play

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2009
    Location: Argentina
    Woah what a ride! Missed around 300 loot, which means It's on my replay list What an atmosphere! I surely got kinda lost sometimes, but this mission is not samey looking to get you frustrated, and it's easy enough to get your bearings back. Creativity and mood is what makes this mission shine, along with quality gameplay. Congrats to the authors and thank you for bringing us this cool FM.

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Location: CT, USA
    Quote Originally Posted by Azaran View Post
    This mission is incredible

    I'm trying to figure something out. What do these capacitors do? They focus on this gem, but it can't be frobbed, and there seems to be some chamber underneath, but I can't access it

    As an aside, there is another amazing Thief 1 FM with the same title that's also worth a play
    When all the beams are on the gem something happens way underneath needed to meet an objective (on expert, anyway).

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2016
    Location: The Warp
    Quote Originally Posted by Azaran View Post
    I'm trying to figure something out. What do these capacitors do? They focus on this gem, but it can't be frobbed, and there seems to be some chamber underneath, but I can't access it
    Quote Originally Posted by Dahenjo View Post
    When all the beams are on the gem something happens way underneath needed to meet an objective (on expert, anyway).

    Hint: Mages like to keep records. It's a fair bet that someone might have written about it at some time in the past.

    Bigger hint: A trip to the northern library wing would be worth your while.

    Solution: Dahenjo's got it. There's a readable in the library (the big one, not the one on the third floor) that explains what they're for, and a trip underground will eventually find you the endpoint.

    @Azaran: I thought there might be one with the same title. Oh well, putting a year after the title in general discussion should be enough to clear things up should there ever be confusion.

    @everyone: Glad you're enjoying our mission!

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com
    Thanks everyone!


    Quote Originally Posted by McTaffer View Post
    @Azaran: I thought there might be one with the same title. Oh well, putting a year after the title in general discussion should be enough to clear things up should there ever be confusion.
    It's a sequel to the impressive Varyx Obelisk. I like the Heart & Soul theme generally, you don't see them that much in FM's

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com
    Quote Originally Posted by DarkMax View Post
    Woah what a ride! Missed around 300 loot, which means It's on my replay list

    What a ride indeed; I ended up 1100 short though, need to find that hidden stash wherever it is

    And yeah, I did find the ones in the tombs with all the traps, so there must be some other section I've missed

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: Cracow, Poland

  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    I have the Mystic's Soul, and I've got the bonus Advisor's emblem.

    Unfortunately I'm now running around a bit lost. Any hint for the Heart and the info on who's in charge?

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com
    TheHeart is in the tombs down below if I remember, the ones with the traps and the water around. Don't remember where I found the info

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Regarding the latter, it's in the captain's quarters, near the barracks and the wine cellar (the place with huge barrels).

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    Ah, found them both after a bit more searching. Thanks!

    This one was good! Great, sprawling castle complex to explore, with some great, creative new enemies and puzzles. I especially loved the ghosts with bones inside, the moonlight activating the holy water fountain, and the magic well bucket! The layout and level design of the castle was awesome.

    My only complaint is that it was maybe a bit too sprawling. Without a map, a lot of samey textures used throughout, and with very few clues or directions given, it became more about running around trying to find places I hadn't been yet than working towards a specific location. I found that all the main objectives were just stumbled upon, so the pacing felt a bit random. Only other nitpick is that a couple of the ambient sounds were more distracting than creepy.

    Oh, and the guard legging it out the front gate at the start was brilliant!

    Overall great fun, thanks for this mission!

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2014
    Location: In Cragscleft
    When I start the mission from the FM selector, nothing happens. Any advise?

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    This was a really nice mission with great atmosphere. My only complaint is that this mission is one big maze. I had even big problem with returning back to start. It took me 10 min.

  18. #18
    New Member
    Registered: Sep 2018
    Location: Poland
    Quote Originally Posted by nicked View Post
    other nitpick is that a couple of the ambient sounds were more distracting than creepy.

    I agree with Nicked! I presume Nicked says ONLY about sounds in SND folder. Guys... - I mean makers :) - why do You put ambience which has ridiculous clipped and pounded level to 0dB... It doesn't make any sense. Ambient sounds should create special mood and climate, but as Nicked said it is only distracting and annoying.

    For those who are still playing and have discomfort with to loud 'Viki and 'Wind-Bells' sounds: I created substitutes (2x3 OGGs). They are more quiet and I gave them more life with a little reverberating echo in left/right channel. Effects are very, very subtle and delicate. With EAX or without it - they sounds much better (I think). They do what they should have done - they are just silent ambience, nothing more. If they will be still to loud for You/in Your systems, then go to the "Ambient Volume" slider in Thief Audio Options.

    Link to the package: Heart&Soul 6x OGG instead WAV.7z [1,5MB]

    1) goto link
    2) click archive
    3) click top-right button: "Download" (You don't need to login to download the file).

    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ltq3irgy7...NfRDAOena?dl=0

    It contains 3x VikgigX and 3x BellsX files. Just unpack *.7z archive to Mission SND folder, and don't forget to DELETE six same named WAV files.


    By the way, the mission is top notch :) Level design - enormous good and absolutely fabulous for me. I love it :) So many places, nooks and crannies, and secret passages to hide&sneak. I was playing without blackjacking and killing, so tension level was high and atmosphere was brilliant. Spend about 6 hours (cheatty end-stats says 2h 41min, but they don't count everything ;) to finish it with 0-BJ and ~150 loot short. Amazing mission. It is IMO definitely one of the candidates for winning the contest :)

    There is a room with a very little blue chest (to grab, not to open) and candle. Probably some bad parameters for EAX sound reproduction? Too many loud echo-bumps.


    ___________________
    Sorry for my very bad English :(

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2016
    Location: The Warp
    Quote Originally Posted by TheDarkOne93 View Post
    When I start the mission from the FM selector, nothing happens. Any advise?
    Hmm... I'm not sure why it would be doing that. My only advice is to go through the usual checklist:

    Is your Thief installation outside Program files?
    Is the folder that FMSel (assuming you're using it) reads from outside your main Thief directory?
    Have you tried restarting the FM loader?
    Have you tried a full PC reboot?
    Did you unzip the folder yourself instead of letting the FM loader do it for you? EDIT: I just realized that the way I phrased this implied that you should unzip the folder yourself. Don't do that. I was intending for you to check that you hadn't done that.

    If you're not using FMSel, my advice is limited since it's all I've ever used. Hope this helps.
    Last edited by McTaffer; 11th Dec 2018 at 12:59. Reason: Poor phrasing

  20. #20
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2012
    Location: Minnesota
    Is the audio 'clipping' or is it just too loud compared to the rest of the sound environment?

  21. #21
    New Member
    Registered: Sep 2018
    Location: Poland
    Quote Originally Posted by StinkyKitty View Post
    Is the audio 'clipping' or is it just too loud compared to the rest of the sound environment?

    Ha ;D That is hard and tricky question ;) So, the only true answer is - both of them ;PP

    OK, but to the point: Of course the clipping is "time-short", so there is no dynamic override or super high distorted sound, but still tiny/little clipping exists :) So - let's officially name it as "too loud" :)

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/qyuzovgw5w...ping2.png?dl=0


    The whole problem is probably not too big for people who keeping their Ambient Vol-Sliders low. I mean 25% or lower. But if You love Thief music and ambience and 'hit it' to 50% - problem appears immediately especially when You are using good sound hardware (high sound resolution, high dynamic range). This six files in SND folder sounds too loud compared to other ambient and more important sounds like far enemy footsteps and enemy taunts. Another thing is: some harmonics peaks are the same or very similar to Thief-wind and cave-hum sounds, and when they sounded together the phenomenon becomes unbearable for longer period of time. It is bad not by distortion, but by appearing some unwanted amplification (boost) in specific frequencies.

    Good example is inside the well. There are two ambient sounds at the same time, and if the third - Viki's laugh - join them, some freqs going to be amplificated too much when Viki's sound level is like in picture above.

    It would not be a big problem if this happened once, twice, even 10 times in whole mission, but there is very serious sneaking lasting for hours - almost 6 hours in my case - so, for such long time of playing this six files has tired my ears very much :)

    I had no Builders patience on my side for this, and after about 2,5h of playing decided to edit this files for my personal comfort. Builder forgive me ;)


    As I said, there is no a big problem to all. Most people probably will not notice it or don't care. But for example exactly the same thing was happened years ago in DrK's A Night in Rocksbourg First Part. Just Quake 1 sound-quote and some other ambient sounds was too loud. There was even a patch file to repair this - and even that - it not repairs all problems and gives one more :D There are a few other FMissions where I need to cool down the ambient, so the problem is common and depends on listener's sensibility and sound hardware they have.




    __________________________
    sorry for my very bad english :(
    Last edited by Mat99; 6th Dec 2018 at 01:11.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2012
    Location: Minnesota
    I see what you mean. The ambience does get too abrasive when those settings are in place. I never thought about upping the music against the sound in the Options to test the loudness. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. I will certainly be mindful of it in the future. And I certainly don't mind that you edited the sound files for your and others convenience. Whatever makes the experience better!

  23. #23
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    This mission is amazing - the layout was so detailed and complex, I was constantly turned around and never quite figured it out. Perfect for the type of mission it was. I've got everything done except I haven't run across the Mystic's Soul yet - I feel like I must be missing something obvious after reading other comments in this thread. Can someone give me a hint?

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2015
    Location: Wisconsin
    Just south of the guard barracks, do you recall seeing a circular recession in the wall with three stone heads in different positions? Try investigating that.

  25. #25
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2016
    Location: The Warp
    Yes, alternatively, there's also another way in through the smaller private library near that area.

    You can see the Soul floating in a hole in the middle of the gigantic circular window above the front door, though you can't access it from there.

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