Hi Tom,

Just a few more observations to add to the 30000 others, hehe.

First of all, I'm really into this game a lot more than I expected to
be. The plot and side scroller aspect really didn't appeal, but it's
got good game play, and there's just no substitute for that.

So... some observations:
It's possible to speed jump along by holding control and repeatedly
whacking a direction much faster than one could in real life.  I
noticed you've already iliminated the possibility to do the same thing
with walking and running though which is good.

Sometimes my view command does nothing, particularly later on in the
level.  Does this mean that a room is completely empty?  It doesn't
even tell me about doors I've just walked through anymore which seems
like a bug but I dunno.  There's also going to need to be a way of
silencing or at least skipping through the items quickly once you've
hit view.  I've followed the threads here loosely today and seen your
concerns with sapi.  Perhaps control could be used to silence speech
that is giving the status of one thing like health or ammo, then the
same key could be used to skip to the next object?  Tap it once
quickly to skip through objects, hold it for a second to abandon
reading, or perhaps just hit any directional key to abandon reading.
Surely that'd just mean stopping the current file in it's tracks and
triggering the next one?  It's not mega eligant, but it'd do, no doubt
a proper programmer can come up with something more foolproof.

It'd mean sourcing another movement sound true, but I thought a neat
way of stopping people from sneaking an easy ride by crouching all the
time once you've iliminated the speed jumping technique would be to
make it so that it's possible to move crouched, but as if she's
shuffling along on her haunches.  You could even make it so that she
can't move more than a few hesitant shuffles crouched if the
bigger/heavier weapons aren't holstered, think about it, it'd be
tricky to balance over any real distance whilst slinging an oozy would
it not?

Weapons holstered brings me to another observation.  I absolutely love
the detail in not being able to climb a rope unless you have a free
hand to do so, but not being able to jump pits and fires seems odd to
me.  If there's the weight of a sub machine gun there, surely it'll
drag her down whether it's in her hand, her holster, the back pocket
of her combats, or whatever you'd wear for treasure hunting amongst
monsters lol.  If it's a balance thing again then I see your point to
some extent, but a bow and arrow or a hunting knife would hardly be as
much of a pain to sling during a jump as a sub machine gun.  Perhaps a
solution that maintains the realism would be that some weapons could
be out for jumps, you could document it or just rely on common sense
of the players.  It'd give extra realism because I know if I were
wandering around in the dark with all sorts of nasties I'd want at
least a knife handy at all times!!

The debate about torches lighting automatically is tricky.  I'm on the
fence that finds them in the inventory and they light when I hit enter
to choose one, but it's probably because that's what I'm used too and
for me it doesn't impeed realism or game play, it's just an old habbit
and probably how I'd code it if this were my creation is all.
Similarly I'd have keys in the inventory for locked doors that had to
be manually activated, but I realise that might take some serious
restructuring to make sure there's enough ways of distinguishing
between keys you hold at any one time to keep the realism going.

Hitting y or n for yes and no, cursor right and left perhaps to go
through levels of the menu structure so it avoids your escape quirk
you were having would be welcome additions in my mind.

Sound-wise it's all pretty much rocking my socks off.  A few things
dont seem to sit quite right alongside the others, the two biggest
ones for me being keys and coins.  I'd expect to hear a jingling set
of keys for keys and a snatching them up type sound when they're
taken, with something along similar lines for the coins, these are a
bit like slay bells hehe.  It's true that you're only collecting one
key so the bunch isn't accurate, but sometimes I'd go for what I want
to hear over realism if it's likely to make the sounds easier to
identify and remember for a new player.  The sword sound, as in the
one in the learn game sounds menue seems to have been resampled from a
lower sampling rate or something, it's a tad ugly against how good the
others are, but not a huge gripe.

Two tiny things that are purely personal preference but might be worth
considering.  Exit game might be a nicer menue item than exit program,
it's just what I expected to see seeing as you've got game settings
and game sounds and load game etc.  And lastly, that big cymbal role
panning around when the credits first load bugs me something cronic!
If Eliot gave it you that way and it's unchangeable I'll learn to live
with it.  But if it's an easy job to fix, do that alone and you'll
have a preorder from me lol.  The reason I bring it up is that you've
got an awesome soundtrack here, and it just doesn't fit the genre.
Cymbal roles are epic and dramatic and all the right stuff, a big yes,
wild panning is such a no though.

Believe it or not, there was more, I should've made notes.  I'll have
another bash through the level tomorrow and see if anything else comes
back to me.

BTW, if you ever need an extra set of hands sourcing or recording
sounds such as those that I've picked on, feel free to shout me off
list.  I pay most of the bills with production work and have decent
gear to record with here, would be happy to help out.

Cheers, and inspite of my knitpicking, this really is awesome to play.

Scott

On 2/25/09, shaun everiss <shau...@xtra.co.nz> wrote:
> what about putting this as a toggel.
> I like the auto light myself.
> or if we don't have this some indication that one is or should be used
> should appear.
> wouldn't have to be anything fancy, could just be a chime or something.
> At 12:32 p.m. 25/02/2009, you wrote:
>>Hi James,
>>
>>James Said:
>>I haven't tried the beta yet, but on the torches:
>>I personally think having torches automatically light is helpful in
>>several ways; since they cannot be used at your disgression their
>>placement is a clue to the location of a dark area.  You can be pretty
>>sure that it's close to where you got the torch.
>>
>>Tom Says:
>>Well, back when this game was Montezuma's Return we got lots of complaints
>> about torches automatically lighting so we made them a manual light. In
>> this matter it is a lose lose situation. Someones bound to complain no
>> matter which way we go with it, and that is just how it is going to be.
>>As for using torches the entire level is considered to be dark with a few
>> exceptions such as a room with a fire pit, torch, or some other object
>> that would naturally give off light. This isn't exactly that hard to
>> figure out, and isn't rocket science. You are in a dark underground temple
>> and need light constantly to get around.
>>
>>James Said:
>>Speaking of items,
>>I'm not sure I like the idea of hitting enter near an item to pick it
>>up.  From the demos and trailers (as well as past iterations of the
>>game) it doesn't seem like you'd ever want to skip or avoid an object.
>>It sounds to me like lots more "complexity" has been added to the
>>game, which in the end doesn't achieve anything but a multitude of
>>additional keypresses.
>>
>>Tom Says:
>>Lots of time and effort has been put into adding complexity to the game
>> which may be more interesting to some and more frustrating to others. We
>> can't please everyone and we just have to play this one by ear. As far as
>> using enter to pick up items that is what all the Tomb Raider games do,
>> and since this is a spin off of the Tomb Raider series we like to keep
>> that similar feel and keyboard layout if possible.Besides it is just way
>> to easy if Angela picks up anything near by just by walking over it. you
>> need to actually find it with a lit torch and reach out and pick it up.
>>HTH.
>>
>>
>>
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