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07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Each week a single map is discussed here in detail.

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UBerserker
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Subject: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 07 Mar 2016, 15:11

Map Title: Gateway to Na Pali
Author: Jeremy War
From: Unreal
Filename: SkyCaves.unr
Music Files: Surface.umx




Video Playthrough:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Db4mnFB2rzc

Sypnosis: Prisoner 849's journey continues in the sky!

Discuss!

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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 07 Mar 2016, 16:26

I was baffeled when I realized I was actually in the sky. And I was also surprised that the new type of enemies (Kraal) were that easy to beat so far into the game. Compared to the Skaarj, their evasion ability is a joke and compared to Mercaneries they don't have a cheating shield. I liked the overall level because of its straightforwardness (as opposed to the Spire before) but I thought it was too short. Nice scripted events.
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UBerserker
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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 07 Mar 2016, 16:35

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=3559&p=68488#p68488
Something not mentioned in the trivia thread, because that small Unreal beta that has come out months ago (older than the big one) had actually SkyCaves.unr: it appears that the balcony at the beginning was the original starting point.

This small beta version had the playerstart right there, and given the balcony architecture, the skypod was very likely to arrive there instead. Honestly it seemed like a better choice instead of starting inside some cylinder cave room.
Might also take in account the fact that Amethyst was supposed to come before this sky island (then nobody knows the actual full plan of the sky island section, it was going to be much bigger and with multiple sky locations).

By the way, this version of the map was highly unfinished. The original starting corridor was there but it had a dead end, no cylinder cave room yet. Map itself also had everything up to the large cave river area. Mantas were known to be there at one point in development - this version instead had a Squid in the river.


This map is very refreshing after the Sunspire, it's like a fucking breath of fresh air. Basically "season 2 starting map" type of content, with the music being owning.
First time I played SkyCaves, I had vague memories with it. I was afraid of not being able to end Sunspire again, so I didn't play this map for a big while. I don't know how I imagined there were two static giant astronauts in the skybox when watching the skybox horizon from the first balcony.
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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 08 Mar 2016, 02:36

A short, linear map in itself, but it fits in perfectly contextually, as a cool-down between two of the larger maps in the game. In addition this map helps carry the major theme shift, and lets you take it in without being too demanding in other areas. It also introduces both the Krall and Rifle, which finishes both the enemy and weapon roster (outside of variant enemies); the introduction of Krall is sort of odd though given they're one of the weakest enemies yet introduced last. All that adds together to make it one of the best transition maps in the game.

UBerserker wrote:Basically "season 2 starting map" type of content.


This sums this map up pretty well; I associate this with being around the mid-point of the game (and it follows up one of the largest and most foreshadowed locations of the game), and introducing the final original mechanical elements makes it kind of a turning point.
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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 09 Mar 2016, 04:14

This map works well as a short little cooldown map right after you just beat Sunspire and right before you enter Na pali haven. Strange how the krall are the last enemies you encounter though. They are pathetically easy. Anyways stepping out of the elevator and realizing you are in a skycave is one of the most badass moments out of any video game I've played. :tup:
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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 09 Mar 2016, 14:54

This map was especially visually impressive for me, I was adoring the incave waterfall and the nightly skyline. Voodoo 2 was the shizz.

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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 13 Mar 2016, 12:45

Just 9 words: the map after the best map ever & great music!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZPFPVHTf2Y

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Subject: Re: 07/03/2016 - "Gateway to Na Pali" by Jeremy War

Post Posted: 13 Mar 2016, 21:47

Semfry wrote:
UBerserker wrote:Basically "season 2 starting map" type of content.


This sums this map up pretty well; I associate this with being around the mid-point of the game (and it follows up one of the largest and most foreshadowed locations of the game), and introducing the final original mechanical elements makes it kind of a turning point.

[...]
All that adds together to make it one of the best transition maps in the game.


You guys said it better than I could have :tup:
Being the introduction to the Sky Isles is enough for this map to be seriously memorable, and yeah that scripted event pictured in the OP (the Krall making the Nali "walk the plank") is cool! :o

EDIT: this is great by the way
UBerserker wrote:[First time round] I don't know how I imagined there were two static giant astronauts in the skybox when watching the skybox horizon from the first balcony.

:tup:
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Waffnuffly wrote:It's tarydium-doped smoothies. Drunk by the player, I mean. The player is tripping balls. The whole game actually takes place in a large city and the player thinks he's on an alien world.


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