Hi again. I've finished my playthrough of Redux and got it all written up. Currently the text LP I did as my recording is on my log under the name of "Marathon Redux (Alpha 0.013) Spoiler Guide" with appropriate warnings (saying it doesn't represent the final game and discouraging people from reading it if they want to avoid spoilers) in two parts for easy posting, as the Pfhorums' image resize code doesn't work. Would you like me to post it on the story forum as well or just provide the links to the log versions?
I also came up with a couple of ideas that I'll summarise here:
5D Space hallway in Couch Fishing
Personally, I would have just lowered the ceiling here to create the illusion that it’s a bridge. That only works if the polygons are set up right though, else it would lower the ceiling of the whole room.
Shuttle Drydock in Napalm
I like how the shuttles now have a way in and out of the drydock, but it’s still too small and doesn’t look anything like a drydock, other than the jacks in the middle. Not complaining though, as it’s just an alpha, plus the ship entrance is at least trying.
Things to fix for the next build: a lot more detail in the drydock to go with the new ship entrance in the ceiling it has now, turn the monster respawn rates way down and get rid of the tiny wasps. They seriously kill the pacing of this level by wasting my ammo and health. It turns this level from nice with a bit of challenge to just plain not fun, only helped slightly by the music and other bits.
The last part you know about from when I brought it up in the Rampancy Portal 2 stream. I also like how the flamethrower is planned to have a realistic range (going by the results I saw of a previous poll on this thread)
Question about the bomb plotline resolution (around Shake Before Using)
Now, I know this is still just an alpha but I’ve come to the final 2 lava pumps and I still don’t see the Pfhor bomb. Just curious to know because of that: what is the plan for this section? Is the bomb even intended for this specific level or a later one, like FIREX5 or Colony Ship for Sale? Wherever the bomb ends up appearing, I’d like there to be a puzzle involving switches and circuit/wire smashing to defuse it with clues on how to do it right. Hit the wrong switch or cut the wrong wires and there could be a Juggernaut explosion that kills the player and everything on the level, simulating the bomb going off.
For Colony Ship for Sale, I'm still not pleased that the room with the weapons you can enter via a secret from the older/original ios M1A1 is a suicide trap. I also have ideas for potential new geometry or level plans:
I wonder how this level’s geometry can be improved for future versions? I’ve seen suggestions elsewhere offering ideas as a Security team assault course or setting it in the Marathon’s reactors. I don’t know if the reactors are fusion like Halo but if they’re fission based, they could take a realistic reactor design, with coolant waterways and pipes, the Marathon’s lava cycle “sea” at the end of the rivers, waste channels and disposal/recycling plants (using the radioactive green slime in Pfhor ship levels), decontamination showers and cooling ponds for the spent fuel rods. What would you guys like to see improved architecture wise in this map?
I'm very proud of this next suggestion: On Two Times Two Equals, I found that you can go outside the ship through a secret lift in the first slime fall. While it's a suicide trap for the moment, I'm sure it's just an oversight in this case and I have a really juicy idea for a secret in this area:
Oh man, cool! This must be how the drones outside are getting in. You can jump and float around the hull of the Sfiera and destroy all the robots. I never thought I’d see something like this.
All I detect down there are pools of jelly. We should continue our search somewhere else. You can float over the skybox part of the hull in those gaps and grenade climb to get out. The search somewhere else part is going to be a little tricky as the windows are all closed and the line in the skybox where the waterfall trap was are one-way only so I can’t get back without reloading.
Assuming this secret (if it isn’t a glitch) is kept in the newer versions, an idea for this area would be to fight your way past the drones along the outside of the hull and find the tower from Naw Man, He’s Close’s development concept. You’d then cross the slime lake around it, climb the tower and find a weapons cache and a secret terminal up top that warps you back into the main level. It’s gotta have a really good message too, either a translated S’pht one or another fun little Easter egg.
Pfhoraphobia's boss fight seems to have a new defence, but it got rid of the controller's dodging and it still doesn't have an attack. I suggest in the log LP it could be improved by " restore(ing) the controllers dodging, keep the shield but make the havok rifle less overpowered against it and give the controller attacks of his own. Perhaps plasma flamethrowers from M2’s enforcers maybe, or a bullet hell of fighter shots"
In the next map, I like how you can destroy the Pfhor pupae but currently it looks rather underwhelming.
The pupae just shatter like glass with a little phut however. That’s lame. What I’d do instead is have them squelch apart and show the dying, half-evolved Pfhor climbing out, covered in Pfhor blood, yolk and gibs.
It would look pretty damn cool if we saw them being scrambled like fertilised chicken eggs like that. Especially as it wouldn't be too different to Pfhor and Bob hard death animations, only slower.
The last thing I recommend is changing the cargo holds in Welcome to the Revolution to actually look like cargo holds, with boxes and forklifts and crane hooks and stuff.
All in all, despite any teething trouble the current alpha build has, I still really loved playing it and I am happy to have helped beta testing it. (is that the right term?) I haven't tried it on Total Carnage yet, but that will be my second playthrough I'll be doing causally. I also need to try a vidding run after that to see if the planking system is implemented yet and how it differs from the main one.
I hope my playthrough and advice ends up being helpful.
Peace, and best of luck.