Marathon: Aeon

Discuss and unveil current Marathon projects.

Post Sep 13th '11, 19:00

W wrote:this

I'm somewhat confused. Did I repeatedly accuse Ryoko of having a superiority complex somewhere in one of my replies, insofar as to bring this up?

As an aside, I read the whole thing. Legendary.
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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Sep 13th '11, 19:12

Dugit wrote:I'm somewhat confused.

Yes you are. The same things Ryoko was talking about apply here, and it wasn't directed at you.
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Wrkncacnter

Post Sep 13th '11, 21:54

Dugit wrote:I'm somewhat confused. Did I repeatedly accuse Ryoko of having a superiority complex somewhere in one of my replies, insofar as to bring this up?

As an aside, I read the whole thing. Legendary.

The point is that acting like this:

whenever somebody says a controversial statement is a waste of time, and trying to bring down someone's argument like that is generally ignorant. Of course it's a matter of taste. Don't try to insult someone's intelligence by insisting they say it's just their opinion when they're not acting like it's not.
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RyokoTK
Saint Paul, MN

Post Sep 14th '11, 09:14

W wrote:I think this is somewhat relevant here. It's a good thing you're around to state the obvious though.

I agree with Forrest there. There is value in making clear what is your opinion and what isn't. If you say "I don't like black&white" the reader knows this is just a remark that can be ignored if he disagrees. If you say "black&white is bad", you make it sound like there is some overall consensus that it is, or that it's bad - objectively speaking - because it makes it harder to discern walls or something like that.
So, seeing as you omitted the word "like", I thought you hadn't realized the obvious fact that it is a matter of taste, or that you are one of those people that think their taste is universal. The fact that you continued discussing the matter (where discussing tastes is a rather pointless thing to do), strengthened that belief.
I mean, what ryoko says there is that you don't need to say "I like" because it's obviously an opinion. Imagine I say "I just hovered to the bakery." Well obviously I mean I walked to the bakery, because people can't hover. However, in that case, I expressed myself poorly. If I say I hovered, that implies that I hovered. If you don't say "I like", that implies that you think you're not expressing a taste. Would I insult you by using the word walking instead of hovering? No. You don't insult me by specifying where you're expressing an opinion.

RyokoTK wrote:The point is that acting like this:

whenever somebody says a controversial statement is a waste of time, and trying to bring down someone's argument like that is generally ignorant.

I would like to make a distinction here between tastes, opinions and facts.
"Blond hair looks nice" is a matter of taste.
"The earth is round" is a fact.
"Obama is a good president" is neither. It's not a matter of taste, since one may argue that it's true. However, it's not a fact, since others may argue the contrary. I'd call that an opinion.
If you disagree with a fact, you're wrong. If you disagree with an opinion, you should find counterarguments. In case of taste, however, there are no arguments. You can choose to keep other people's tastes in mind, or you can choose not to.
Eternal - Xmas I - Xmas II - Xmas III - Victory Dance IV - Winter I: The Venom - KTA III - Phoenix - somewhere in the heavens, waiting: The Syndicate
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Drictelt

Post Sep 14th '11, 12:55

It is actually very common practice in English essays not to state repeatedly that what you are arguing is just your opinion. I'm not sure what it's like where you are, but read some editorials in any of our major newspapers, magazines, or websites, and you will definitely see phrases like "black and white is bad." Usually the only indication you get that "this is, like, my opinion, man" is that you're reading the editorials or opinion section.

If Pfhorums doesn't qualify as an opinion section, I don't know what does :)
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treellama
Pittsburgh

Post Sep 14th '11, 14:31

Yes, I do believe that in Europe, specifically in my country, more caution is mandatory when contradicting or criticizing someone than in Anglosaxon countries (or Holland).
Eternal - Xmas I - Xmas II - Xmas III - Victory Dance IV - Winter I: The Venom - KTA III - Phoenix - somewhere in the heavens, waiting: The Syndicate
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Drictelt

Post Sep 14th '11, 15:08

I continued to discuss it because my first reply was half-assed and I wanted Doogit to know what I was talking about. You just keep showing up to say pointless things, and I'm not really sure why.
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Wrkncacnter

Post Sep 15th '11, 16:43

Drictelt wrote:Yes, I do believe that in Europe, specifically in my country, more caution is mandatory when contradicting or criticizing someone than in Anglosaxon countries (or Holland).

Yes, my favourite parts of Anti-Oedipus are the pages upon pages of obfuscation and hand-wringing.

Anyway,

Repeat after me: form follows function.

As has been said, you need to learn to streamline things, and not just the architecture. It says a lot that you had to break Eternal Lucid Dream and Pfherrous Oxide up because there weren't enough monster slots in the Physics file.

Which is weird, since you're obviously inspired by Phoenix and Rubicon, which are both quite restrained in their own way. Phoenix focuses on combat, while Rubicon is more about the exploration. And at the moment, you're not really finding a middle ground, you're trying to jam in both hardcore battling and sprawling architecture at once.

What really got me was the monster placement, it's so abrupt. You come across a wall of enemies, all at once, and all at the same range (usually almost point blank, too) - I'm thinking of the scene that greats you as soon as you teleport into The Rise and Fall of Dugit, or the wall of cyborgs a bit later. And in a lot of these battles, I ended up getting caught on the architecture while running around.

Look at Phoenix's first big fight in The Count of Tuscany - there are a lot of enemies at once there, but they're spread out, and there's a lot of room for running around - even in the cave complex. Or Haller's core in Rubicon - a lot of complex architecture, but not a lot of monsters. And when the monsters do show up, the areas you fight them in are comparatively simple.

I hope this helps. Aeon's impressive, you just need to be that bit more selective.
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Weisscanker

Post Sep 15th '11, 17:44

Thanks. :)

Weisscanker wrote:It says a lot that you had to break Eternal Lucid Dream and Pfherrous Oxide up because there weren't enough monster slots in the Physics file.

I don't want to get into deconstructing criticism, but I need to clarify: the two levels were broken up because of the respawn rates of the VacBobs and Troopers employed in Pfherrous could not be compatible with ELD (there were no respawning enemies in that level).

Weisscanker wrote:And at the moment, you're not really finding a middle ground, you're trying to jam in both hardcore battling and sprawling architecture at once.

What really got me was the monster placement, it's so abrupt. You come across a wall of enemies, all at once, and all at the same range (usually almost point blank, too) - I'm thinking of the scene that greats you as soon as you teleport into The Rise and Fall of Dugit, or the wall of cyborgs a bit later. And in a lot of these battles, I ended up getting caught on the architecture while running around.

Look at Phoenix's first big fight in The Count of Tuscany - there are a lot of enemies at once there, but they're spread out, and there's a lot of room for running around - even in the cave complex. Or Haller's core in Rubicon - a lot of complex architecture, but not a lot of monsters. And when the monsters do show up, the areas you fight them in are comparatively simple.

I hope this helps. Aeon's impressive, you just need to be that bit more selective.

My gracious- things like this have kept me from sleep on a number of nights. :)

Jjaro Jjaro Evolution is basically all architecture after the lavafall. There's a grand total of eight monsters in that part of the level, and it's still hard. Shadow, however, has about a hundred and fifty monsters with only a little more difficulty, with half of them staged in large battles.

The earlier levels really do represent the start of a learning curve. I have tried to rectify a number of awful monster placements on a number of those early levels. I've recently gone through them again to see what I can do. Here's the list of major stuff so far:
  • Monsters have been rearranged and added on Founder Effect. There's an extra battle in the first cave with a MOAH, extra ammunition beforehand, and one or two additions elsewhere (notably some Heavy Troopers here and there).
  • The initial engagement on ELD has been changed so that it's not so unfair. There' plenty of time to face the single trooper with the AR provided if you decide to vid the level.
  • The hangar battle on ELD has been expanded a titch. It's actually easier now, though.
  • Major S'pht'Kr Defenders and Sniper Troopers have been added on Frameshift. It's just too easy without them. I'm considering adding the former to Vae Victis, too.
  • IODA actually teleports to Frameshift. Oops.
  • Monsters have been repositioned/modified to make them behave properly in the last part of Blaze.
There's probably a load more. If you can do an in-depth Beta test I'd be really grateful. Insertion into the .imgA file as standard, of course. :)
Just PM me. Any glaring errors I want to have fixed before 1.9 is released.

EDIT: In fact, if anyone wants to do a good beta test before 1.9, I'd be glad.
Last edited by Dugit on Sep 15th '11, 18:51, edited 1 time in total.
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Sep 16th '11, 16:03

Dugit wrote:Thanks. :)
I don't want to get into deconstructing criticism, but I need to clarify: the two levels were broken up because of the respawn rates of the VacBobs and Troopers employed in Pfherrous could not be compatible with ELD (there were no respawning enemies in that level).

Oops, my bad. I saw a drone blasting me with what looked like S'pht bolt sprites on TRAFOD, and just kind of assumed...

But Pfherrous does kind of sum it up for me - Arrival spacing with enough monsters to make it just that bit too crampt. It's not the narrowness so much as the linearity, nothing to really duck into or out of - even with the big arena battles.

Anyway, thanks a lot for taking that lot on board.
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Weisscanker

Post Oct 8th '11, 00:10

Last night decided to play through a few levels of aeon since a lot of effort seems to be going into it. Now, I haven't read the majority of this thread but I gather that a new version that addresses many concerns is coming - so forgive me if any of this is redundant.

The aesthetic of the levels are impressive for a relatively new mapper, the level of ambition and rough talent are clearly evident. On the other hand, experience, and to a large degree -common sense- are lacking in these maps. Every one of the first five maps had room after room which were too cramped to be believable as functional spaces.

The stairs with no exception are so shallow that the player is launched off the top, often into the ceiling of the connected room. Often the stair texture is in the exact same alignment the whole way up which makes them look odd and breaks the suspension of disbelief needed for a scenario.

Your use of polygons seems to involve a lot of acute angles near walls which bounce the player around and sometimes launches the player to places they can't get out of. Some of these seem to have caught your attention as there are teleporters out, this is a tacky work around. Fix the underlying problem.

The terminals are overwrought, often the information being presented is more than the characters would realistically convey in one sitting. An example of this is the scientist reverse engineering coolant. A Pfhor would not cop to accidents when addressing high command, nor appraise them of trials and uncertainty. If you want to convey those details a personal log would be more believable. This is especially important in developing your slightly menacing and quite cavalier AI personality, the flowery and ditsy voice you've given it is not convincing. Consistency is key, and subtext is a defining quality of marathon's storytelling. I know that's a lot to expect, but for what you're aiming for less is underselling the work and thought you're clearly putting into this.

I can see this project pulling together into something quite impressive and want to congratulate you on the dedication and skill you've developed in this project. The glaring oversights make the gameplay tedious and may be monumental to address in such complicated architecture, but the potential is clearly there. I'd say reign in your ambition and hone the funfactor before committing to sprawl and decor.
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screamingfool

Post Dec 9th '11, 18:10

Sorry there haven't been many updates recently: schoolwork has bogged down the project and I'm shelving it for the moment. I'm releasing Aeon 1.9. It's pretty polished, I suppose, but so far I haven't been able to incorporate all recent suggestions (that'll be for 2.0). Here are the main additions/adjustments (there are many smaller ones unlisted):

- Two new full solo levels
- One new netmap level
- Gameplay enhancement on all main solo levels (generally more difficult rather than easier)
- Images file updated for testing credits
- 3x Canister DDS made blue rather than purple ( [MTongue] )
- Expanded texture files
- In Our Dreams Awake now teleports to Frameshift Mutation properly
- Music files heartily expanded

I've got a couple of levels in the pipeline, although I wouldn't expect anything soon. I may get back into it over the coming weeks, and considering my track record with games that aren't Marathon, that's extremely likely. :)
If you have any feedback for the new levels, I'd be extremely grateful.
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Dec 10th '11, 20:26

Definitely reminds me of Evil in terms of texturing and mapping style. Screamingfool's already addressed most of what I would point out, with the exception of the terminals themselves. Many times they aren't obvious in any way, and have no consistency between appearances. A novice player would be utterly lost even on the first level - how the heck were they supposed to know that one little rectangle with the Pfhor logo on it was a terminal and not just some miscellaneous decoration? This is especially true given the overwhelming amount of detail most maps have. I found a great many terminals simply because I activate anything that looks out of place, but even then it makes me wonder how many I missed in the first 4 levels alone. This stands for doors too.

:edit:
And two rebellion levels back to back? One of which is almost entirely pistol/fusion pistol BoBs, and only gives you red health cans? That's just brutally bad design. I'll be fair, I'm playing on TC so maybe the map was intended to be done on a lesser difficulty, but yeesh.
Last edited by L'howon on Dec 11th '11, 03:16, edited 1 time in total.
I have been wading in a long river and my feet are wet.
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L'howon
Somewhere outside the Citadel Of Antiquity

Post Dec 10th '11, 23:15

The first few levels may as well be deemed 'tests'. It gets steadily better; I think that the two newest levels are my best yet, but I'll still always love ELD. :)
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Dec 18th '11, 22:55

I'm fairly certain I'm getting back into Marathon, and I'm very close to starting to modify Aeon again. Now, I have some good advice from screamingfool and Lh'owon and I swear I'll try to implement it as best I can.

However, Ammon's "detailed beta-test" never came through and as far as I'm concerned he/she is inactive. Whoever can do a detailed beta-test on short notice, I would certainly appreciate it. I'm thoroughly considering a good retexture of the earlier levels to make them at least passable, so specific advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for all the support guys: I'm really happy with 1.9.

Oh, and if you can finish Asking a Shadow to Dance on TC without using the AR, I'll give you a cookie. :)
Last edited by Dugit on Dec 18th '11, 22:56, edited 1 time in total.
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Feb 15th '12, 23:07

Update?
Please?
listener

Post Feb 15th '12, 23:52

Maybe in the summer, but not right now. I'm afraid GCSEs take precedence over Marathon, no matter how much I don't want them to. :)

I do have one or two levels in the pipeline, but I would really appreciate a detailed beta-test to make the earlier levels at least passable. Sure, the later levels might be nearing the quality some of the better Infinity levels, but some of the earlier ones are just piles of crap. Our Lives is still in there only because it's kinda nostalgic to me.
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Feb 22nd '12, 21:51

Dang, can't believe i missed this.
Oh well.
I was just more or less seeing if it was still going or not.
listener

Post Aug 13th '12, 23:08

Dugit'll Fix It

â?? A save terminal on Vae Victis, Words Which I Command, at the beginning of Founder Effect and Asking A Shadow To Dance and at the end of In Our Dreams Awake
â?? Deletion of More Dakka and Our Lives A Mimicry entirely
â?? Problematic geometry scenario-wide.
â?? Universal retexture effort (ELD, I'm looking at you)
â?? Remove seeking attribution to Jjaro compiler bolts
â?? Curtail health of White-blood MOAH, VacBob and Heavy Trooper
â?? Less aggressive weapons curve (?)

â?? Single story line (?)
_____

â?? Monster path-finding glitch on Founder Effect
â?? Simplify the opening battle of Founder Effect
â?? Make mission completion more obvious
â?? Deepen display indentations in computer room
â?? Modify standing water in dark room
â?? Retexture to make more cohesive. Yep.
â?? Review trigger-monster disparity
â?? Remove enforcer ambush in plunge-pool room
â?? Remove/modify MOAH battle in dark room
â?? Modify douchey ambush past the hangar-room staircase
â?? Remove juggernaut (?)
â?? Last Bob cadre doesn't activate
â?? Overall: simplify combat. More fighters. Less heavy troopers.

â?? Redo gray CLUTs on Eternal Lucid Dream to make less aesthetically offensive.
â?? Remove/seriously curtail opening battle
â?? Alter stupid curved staircase issue (the world will always build a better Dugit)

â?? Remove respawning enemies on Pfherrous Oxide
â?? Expand level (?)
â?? Make final room 'safe-room' (inc. health, saver and shizzle)

â?? Curtail offensive geometry on Rise and Fall of Dugit
â?? Connect first area with second area properly, dammit
â?? Remove useless first terminal (retexture)
â?? Move forward second battle triggers
â?? Replace MOAC fusion burst attacks with regular fusion bolts
â?? Remove obstacles in final room
â?? Curtail heavy drone volley to two shots
â?? Remove uppermost river in temple

â?? Presence of boss fighter too early on Asphodel Meadows on some difficulties (?)
â?? Trimming down gray juggernaut health and removal of the second
â?? Fix problem staircase before second waterfall battle
â?? Vindicate plot split (:p)

â?? Repositioning of spawn point in Blaze to back rooms
â?? Allow terminals to set up final battle (replace early gray-bloods with Pfhor/humans?)

â?? Make (pivotal) switch easier to see on Lapsus Linguae
â?? Add recharger to complex interior

â?? More defenders in Asking A Shadow To Dance pit battle
â?? Water down first subterranean battle
â?? Make mission clear
â?? Oxygen earlier

â?? More oxygen on Words Which I Command
â?? De-rebellion Vae Victis (?)

â?? Review Frameshift Mutation for trigger glitches: 'nearest hostile', not 'player' for polybattles
â?? Restructure final battle; replace heavy fusion blasts; make door stay open; add 2x canister
â?? Lighten first teleport ambush

â?? Give player guns at the beginning of Jjaro Jjaro Evolution (de-rebellion?)
â?? Save-point halfway through
â?? Remove compilers
â?? Curtail defender health and projectile damage; give 3x before second half

â?? Difficult to see (and vital :p) underground doorway on In Our Dreams Awake

There's definitely more. Probably.
Last edited by Dugit on Aug 17th '12, 08:27, edited 1 time in total.
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Aug 14th '12, 00:40

You have to fix the fact that Jjaro Jjaro Evolution is an awful level with awful monsters. :/

Edited for clarity: Evolution is one of the most aggressively terrible levels I've ever played.
Last edited by RyokoTK on Aug 14th '12, 01:03, edited 1 time in total.
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RyokoTK
Saint Paul, MN

Post Aug 14th '12, 18:16

Added all Ryoko's critique to the fix list.
Polyplicity my second (less sucky) net pack. Go on. Download it. You know you don't want to.
Marathon Aeon- My scenario in the works ~on Simplici7y

riveting six-vertice amnesty ratifications
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Dugit
Hampshire, UK

Post Oct 9th '12, 21:20

Hey Dugit, why won't Aeon give me its PICTs? Whenever I split it with Atque, there isn't a resources file with all the maps! :(

Also, when is there going to be an update on this? It's been awhile.
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Destiny
TEXAS

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