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[ut] "Vacillations of a Victorian Vagrant"

The archive for the 8th Anniversary Speedmapping Contest entries and discussion.

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User avatar Hellscrag
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Post Posted: 31 Jul 2009, 20:13

Legendslayer222 wrote:what do you mean by a plug? Bathplug? :?


lol.

Mentioning the map by name, and maybe giving an indication of where to download it (i.e. unrealsp.org).
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User avatar Hellscrag
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Post Posted: 01 Aug 2009, 11:48

LS222 - one thing to be aware of: VVVCode.u is currently dependent on VVVTex.utx, so you would need to include that as well. That dependency is something I might be able to tidy up for the compilation version, but for now you should at least be aware of it.
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User avatar Legendslayer222
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Post Posted: 01 Aug 2009, 13:12

Hellscrag wrote:LS222 - one thing to be aware of: VVVCode.u is currently dependent on VVVTex.utx, so you would need to include that as well. That dependency is something I might be able to tidy up for the compilation version, but for now you should at least be aware of it.


OK. :tup:

User avatar Legendslayer222
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Post Posted: 02 Aug 2009, 18:08

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Was this area in the final cut?

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Post Posted: 02 Aug 2009, 18:18

It's in the Slith section. Useful if you want to defeat the serpents in an easy way since they don't enter that room.
Last edited by UBerserker on 02 Aug 2009, 18:20, edited 2 times in total.
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Post Posted: 02 Aug 2009, 18:19

UnrealSP.org webmaster & administrator

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User avatar Buff Skeleton
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Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009, 21:18

Oh man, this was AWESOME in every way. Good gameplay, awesome visuals, really unique and interesting story, etc. I loved every bit of it. I just wish it was longer, but damn you really made quite the map! I'm amazed you kept the geometry so stable, too, with all the high-poly complex brushes. Really fantastic work.

That final battle was a real scramble, too, to shut the machine down and stay alive (I had like 20 health and no armor) long enough to grab the Shield Belt and Superhealth, but I managed (after a couple quickloads). I played it on Hard my first time and I have to say it was about perfect. I look forward to replaying this on Unreal to see how it is.

Seriously, excellent map, great job, especially for only 6 weeks.

User avatar Hellscrag
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Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009, 22:23

Many thanks Waff.

I think I pitched it about right in terms of how ambitious it was. A medium sized map that didn't require me to spend time on very extensive new scripting. Looking at the dropout rate, I wish more entrants had been more realistic with their ambition!
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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 08:47

This map has the most professional build in the contest by far. Dare I say better quality map than that of "The Tower of Shrakith'a"?

Anyways, quality is one thing.. overall experience is another. Did I like the gameplay? Yes and No. Well you see, I made the fatal error of first playing this map on Unreal difficulty. When I got to the part where the 2 Skaarj came through the door after a siren went off, I got killed about 10 times before I successfully got rid of both of them (needless to say, this pissed me off). So that brought it down a few notches for me gameplay wise. But fear not! After finding the key and clearing out the warehouse (obtaining the minigun), my level of confidence increased tenfold. I collected all the DP power ups.. cleared out a skew of skaarj and proceeded my way into the sewers (This is yet again where my confidence level started to drop). I got really frustrated with having to use flares as a light source. Yes its original.. but.. its not 'fun'. Instead, it was a frustrating experience with pupae who did a good deal of damage. This wasn't so bad... but then was the Slith invasion. Ok... I love slith to death as a creature.. but 10 of THEM AT ONCE???? this was just annoying. I basically fought for my life here having to clear out all the slith with limited light source and low health. My confidence level had just dropped 10 notches. Then there was the boss fight..................................................... DDDDDDDDUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUDDDDDDDDDEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

I can confidently say that Vacillations on Unreal difficulty is harder than ANY EXU Map (at least on medium difficulty). I got very frustrated playing through this map.. and honestly.... its hard to maintain confidence when your playing as a hobo with a minigun.

Ok.. so that wasn't the best experience.. so I played it on Medium difficulty instead (what I should have done in the first place). This time, I didn't die once.. I had almost full ammo at the end of the map.. and the boss fight was now extremely easy to beat.

SUMMARY:
What this tells me is that your maps difficulty filter is affecting the maps gameplay waaaaaaaaaaay too much. I would recommend that only slight changes are made for different difficulty levels. I know stock Unreal maps are done this way.. but it seems this one 'Dares to be different'. I honestly think that the difficulty filters you have created are misleading for veteran players who are expecting certain difficulty levels to be maintained as a standard. On medium difficulty, Vaccinations was a very epic map. I enjoyed every bit of it and honestly made me like the map alot more after I did that. I think overall this was the most professionally done level of the contest (in every aspect except difficulty). Thank you for letting me experience this wonderful piece of art... and I only hope that you would continue making these masterpieces for the community! Also, I wouldn't be a least bit surprised if this map did indeed win the contest (although, i might not completely agree with it). Professionalism does deserve an award.

User avatar Legendslayer222
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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 10:03

Jackrabbit, you called it "Vaccinations" instead of "Vacillations"!

User avatar jackrabbit
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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 10:09

I don't know what either word means.. so I don't really care TBH :lol:

(but let me go look them up anyway!)


EDIT:

1. Vaccination is the administration of antigenic material (the vaccine) to produce immunity to a disease. ...

(okay.. I did know this word.. whooops)

2. Vacillation - Oscillation, usually of a small amplitude, about a reference state.

(nope, this one doesn't ring a bell..)

User avatar Legendslayer222
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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 10:26

jackrabbit wrote:Vacillation - Oscillation, usually of a small amplitude, about a reference state.


My dictionary didn't have vacillation, but it did have:

Vacillate: "to keep changing one's mind or opinions about something."

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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 14:35

jackrabbit wrote:When I got to the part where the 2 Skaarj came through the door after a siren went off, I got killed about 10 times before I successfully got rid of both of them (needless to say, this pissed me off). So that brought it down a few notches for me gameplay wise.

This isn't really a good way to review maps. You played it for the first time on the hardest difficulty intended for either really experienced players or people who have already beaten the map on Hard. Scoring the gameplay lower because you (admittedly, even) made the mistake of playing it on Unreal for the first time is definitely a flawed choice. I played it on Hard for the first time and only died in the final battle, and I'm not even super awesome at this game like UB is. The gameplay balance is perfectly fine. Now that I know where everything is, though, I'm gonna have to try this on Unreal.

jackrabbit wrote:SUMMARY:
What this tells me is that your maps difficulty filter is affecting the maps gameplay waaaaaaaaaaay too much. I would recommend that only slight changes are made for different difficulty levels.

OK, you played the map on Unreal and it was too hard, then you played the map on MEDIUM and it was too easy... and your conclusion is that the difficulty is "too drastic" between levels? Did you forget about Hard? :P You really aren't putting much thought into this critique!

Here is pretty much my understanding of the ideal difficulty balance scale (a lot harder to achieve than it is to write down, too):

Easy: For players who are new to FPSs in general, new to Unreal, suck terribly at the game, and/or don't have much mastery of basic gameplay like strafing and using cover to their advantage. Good first-time difficulty.

Medium: For players experienced with Unreal/FPSs, but not necessarily good at them. May have a strong grasp of gameplay, but not an expert. A good first-time difficulty to choose.

Hard: For players experienced with the game and have mastered the gameplay mechanics and have good tactical skill. NOT a good first-time difficulty for weaker players, but fine for good players. Challenging, but fair and doable. Weaker players who have already beaten the map on Medium and no longer find it challenging should step up to Hard.

Unreal: For players with experience in the map already OR extensive mastery of the gameplay mechanics of the core game. This is for people who have either played through the whole map already and know where everything is and are very good at the game, and/or people like UB who are so good at the game that even on their first time, they can win without getting frustrated. Absolutely not a good first-time difficulty UNLESS you are very, very good at the game.

This is the kind of difficulty scale I try to shoot for, and as far as I can tell, Scrag has handled it well too. Even the core game does this to some extent, although Hard and Unreal are still quite easy to an experienced player without a difficulty-boosting mod like Limbo. There SHOULD be big changes between difficulties, because without them, the map becomes a homogeneous borefest for better players. Ultimately, a map should cater both to brand-new players and the most hardened veterans. In order to do that, the gulf between any two difficulties, let alone three or four, should be large enough to encourage replay value and offer new challenges to veterans of the map who decide to step up the difficulty.

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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 14:56

I completely agree with Waffnuffly here.

I usually start all maps on Medium and depending on how hard that is, replay on Hard or on Unreal. I started VVV on Medium and it was a little too easy for me so I then restarted immediately on Hard and VVV proved just about my level. I started on Unreal once but got flattened by the horn (the 2 Skaarj of course) which made me realise that on Unreal a bit more thought should go into the surroundings before I rush into them (next time the horn will flatten the Skaarj).

I play Unreal since 98 or 99 and started everything on Easy (which at that time was the correct setting for me). As time progresses, so does skill (or experience) and Easy just isn't it for me, even Medium is usually not hard enough.

Take Waffnuffly's advice and don't start too high - it can ruin your impression of the map. (and remember, we're not all UBs, in fact we suck :shock: :B )

User avatar jackrabbit
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Post Posted: 04 Aug 2009, 19:02

Guys.. I think you missed the part where I compared this pack to the original Unreal mother game. When I play unreal on 'Unreal', it is nowhere near the drastic changes in gameplay that I see here in VVV. Were talking about full scripted sequences changed because of the simple difficulty filters. Sorry, I'm going to have to say that affects the gameplay TOO much, making the experience for the player DRASTICALLY different depending on what difficulty they are playing. Taking a few quotes from my response and leaving out that part is pretty disrespectful on my part :shake:

Like I said, I had 2 completely different experiences when playing the Map on Unreal and then on Medium. This should simply not happen for a veteran player.

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