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[RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 27 Aug 2013, 21:57

Falcon Outpost? 1 map? Ok, I can probably squeeze that in between chores. No sooner said than done.

Started on Medium, saw an enclosed area surrounded by a wall with some Behemoth patrolling high, and 2 doors .. I probably just have to enter somewhere there. Ah, a big rock behind which I can hide while getting a better look. And that's where I got the fright of my life (actually not of my life but certainly in this map). A good map starts like this: either build tension ... or give the player a fright: but without it prematurely ending the campaign. It's the latter which happened, I got caught by surprise, lost some health but any fairly decent player will get out of trouble and eventually recover : health pickups are scarce (but sufficient).
Progress is fairly straightforward with a bit of backtracking (read and understand the messages). Expect some resistance in about half of the rooms, try not to fall asleep in the dormitory (hint, hint :wink: ) and put the objectives of the mission in your head (I spent about 10 minutes wandering round at the end before I realised what I had to do next).

Opposition seems harder than it really is (I played on Medium, Hard or Unreal will probably be more to my liking, and Unreal and higher (227) will cause problems in some areas. I found the Warlord fight unfair (for the Warlord :lol: ).
On the whole I'ld say it's one of the good "medium-size" maps, the only "disillusion" I had was [spoiler]with the modified Skaarj who should have been supported by his roommates (on Medium that Skaarj presented less trouble than the Warlord)[/spoiler].

Perhaps one bug? On entering Area C a Skaarj attacked, a door to the left opened, the Skaarj was kind 'o forced through that door by my firepower, the door closed ... and never opened again. Before finishing the level I ghosted into that area, killed that Skaarj, and couldn't open the door from inside. So I ghosted through the closed door again, and each time I passed near that door I heard a Skaarj growling but I couldn't find any anywhere (perhaps a sound event?)

Conclusion: a fun map which I have to play at a higher difficulty level to test its replay value. On Medium it's certainly doable for most players, I expect Unreal and higher to be quite difficult.

My verdict, DD has passed and can level up again :)

User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 00:17

Yesterday it seemed that Medium isn'l my standard Unreal difficulty level anymore so today I replay FalconOutpost with ?difficulty =4. (U227)

BTW I read the readme which mentions Difficulty: "Easy-Unreal" . Just by accident I typed 4 instead of 3 (to start the game) so I'm not sure about how this compares to the standerd UNreal difficulty levels (sinde UNreal = ? difficulty=3).

Anyway, to get to the point: this map must, should, it's imperative, be played at high difficulty level. One on one, or 2 against 1 fights then become very interesting (1 direct hit probably won't kill you, but beware of splash damage which drains you quickly). Now the Warlord and the special Skaarj pose some problems (WL still went down without me suffering too much, but I needed 3 tries for the special guy, although it seemed he was less beefed up than the other enemies. Hint: [spoiler]don't free him when you've passed his cage, since he's between you and free moving space, and another hint: try to save some rockets for this moment, without rockets there nothing much to push him back :wink: )[/spoiler]
I'm already planning free time to try ?difficulty=6 (luckily there's time for rest and recup between enemies)

User avatar UBerserker
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 00:51

I killed everything with the DP except the bosses and few exceptions (groups) on the max difficulty.
Warlord is easy, just backward dodge continuously and he'll never catch you.
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Doublez-Down
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 01:00

I feel it's a bit too easy on medium difficulty now as well but thought it was just because I built it and knew all the tricks and stuff. All playtesters said the original version had too little ammo, so I added more on some spots. Tough to find a balance sometimes with that.
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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 19:34

Doublez-Down wrote:I feel it's a bit too easy on medium difficulty now as well ....

Too easy for seasoned players, probably yes. But most "greenhorns" will probably find it not so easy.

Doublez-Down wrote:Tough to find a balance sometimes with that.

True, and that's where the difficulty levels come in handy because what's balanced for me is probably unbalanced or too damned easy for another.

Doublez-Down
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 20:39

I guess there should be another difficulty after Unreal, and call it UB. He seems to be able to kill 55 enemies at once with just a dispersion pistol. Must take 2 hours though so it can recharge. :-)
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User avatar UBerserker
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 21:14

The enemies really do a poor job at dodging DP bolts, especially Troopers.
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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 22:22

Doublez-Down wrote:I guess there should be another difficulty after Unreal, and call it UB. He seems to be able to kill 55 enemies at once with just a dispersion pistol. Must take 2 hours though so it can recharge. :-)

Well, DP was used to kill of the first Behemoths and the Troopers (firing at them when they're looking away doesn't seem to point to your location).
The vermin coming out of the door receives the same treatment. The skaarj guarding the access- switch are still doable using only DP but the difficult part is getting only 1 to follow you down and outside if possible, terminating it and repeating that procedure 2 (or 3) times. Basically almost everything is killable using only the DP, that is ... if you're used to playing that style because one fully loaded DP usually isn't enough and it's nice to keep some heavier ammo ready for tighter situations. Even the Warlord could be killed with the DP (he has problems following the player into the corridor which gave entrance) but I didn't want to waste half an hour with him. The enhanced Skaarj is a no go for the DP I think. He can follow the player around easily and is faster.

Anyway, U227 has 6 difficulty levels (so I'm told). ?difficulty 4 was hard for me and should equate to the standard Unreal difficulty in non U226.
UBerserker wrote:I killed everything with the DP except the bosses and few exceptions (groups) on the max difficulty.
Warlord is easy, just backward dodge continuously and he'll never catch you.

I take it that you played U227 with ?difficulty=6

User avatar UBerserker
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 29 Aug 2013, 22:56

U227 on whatever super max difficulty is about as hard as playing UT on faster speed. Reaction times are almost the same.
Map really doesn't have any hard situation since it mostly pits you against single Skaarj and they do a really poor job following you around (it seems like they face all of a sudden a brick wall). The Skaarj Berserker was simple as well as long as you had the Eightball grenades ready. Hardest battle was against the Skaarj in the generator room as they all chase you everywhere.

About the map itself, definitely I don't think it's as good as any of your other releases. I had some issues in particular:
  • The three main doors in the outpost are quite strange. They stay open for like one minute or two and then they close. Kind of creepy when I figured that out. Still weird though.
  • The door of the chamber which has the control panels that open the research lab and the generator room seem to open up some seconds later than necessary. I was totally ambushed by the Skaarj inside the chamber because I didn't realize the door did open.
  • Had trouble figuring out how to destroy the generator. I thought nothing was going to happen after shooting a few rockets at it. Then boom and I was like "oh you need to shoot it more?". This was my last objective. Of course you can't do much with this engine but it'd be nice adding additional effects to warn the player that it's doing the correct thing.
  • Waffnuffly taught me to not focus too much on translator messages when it comes to essential stuff, because there are always players who don't bother reading them and wait for a random blue sentence in the middle of the screen to appear, saying that I opened door X, pressed button Y. I can expect people to fall into that when they're going to launch the missile. It's a rather weird process going from different control panels and you have to check the missile chamber if anything went right. I don't think I saw any of the "blue messages", even for completed objectives (they appear on the top right corner). Use Special Events with bBroadcast = true and InitialState = Display Message.
  • The map seems to crash as soon as you load it in the UT editor. Bad index something error-wise.
  • Not an issue but I guess I was supposed to rocket jump to get the Shield Belt.

Also what was up with the Skaarj Scout running into that dark room and close himself into? Thought he was the Enhanced Berserker at first.
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Doublez-Down
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 30 Aug 2013, 04:53

Hmm, to each his own I suppose, and thanks for the feedback. Regarding the doors, I was mainly trying to avoid what so many maps fall into in fighting an enemy with a door opening and closing in your face, so I just kept them open longer. I originally made them anyproximity, but that caused other issues, so leaving them open longer seemed the best compromise. Switches that open the lab and generator room are turned on by the middle computer, and the translator message tells you that.

Not sure why you have trouble destroying the generator, it just takes a fully charged DP shot. Understand about the messages, but there are several blue broadcast messages used throughout the map. One tells you to find a keycard, another tells you when you found it. Another tells you the generator can now be shot, etc. The top left messages are from the counter. I'll concede the messages in the missile room could be a tad more clear.

The map opens fine in my UT editor (2.0). Skaarj running away was just an atmospheric thing, like in many other maps.
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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 30 Aug 2013, 13:31

UBerserker wrote:
  • The door of the chamber which has the control panels that open the research lab and the generator room seem to open up some seconds later than necessary. I was totally ambushed by the Skaarj inside the chamber because I didn't realize the door did open.

That, to me, was a nice feature - much better than Skaarj behind door, press button, door opens, Skaarj attacks. The number of enemies in this map isn't particularly high so this setup keeps one alert (especially at higher difficulties)

UBerserker wrote:
  • Not an issue but I guess I was supposed to rocket jump to get the Shield Belt.

That's what I thought also after breaking my head on how to get that shieldbelt.
I was never able to get it since rocketjumping amounts to suicide with me (after all these years, I still can't rocketjump :( :oops:

About Double-Down having produced better releases: I am inclined to agree on this but I still consider it a fun map on the whole (the dormitory part with the surprise was a very nice touch).

User avatar Legendslayer222
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 22 Sep 2013, 11:52

Short but sweet. I like assault style maps like this, especially how you have the choice of what to do when. However, I would have liked some more indication of what objective was in what area, seems a bit pointless letting you choose but not telling you where the thing you chose is. :)
[spoiler]I knew he was going to come alive, but it still made me jump![/spoiler]

Doublez-Down
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 25 Sep 2013, 20:55

I'm thinking of making a few fixes and re-releasing this but wasn't sure if there would be any interest. It wouldn't be anything major, just making some of the events a bit easier to understand since that seems to be the major complaint.

The only way to get the SB is to rocketjump. I suppose that comes from my DM mapping days - I added the two health packs right next to it to compensate for the damage taken during the rocketjump. It's basically a risk vs. reward type thing that I thought worked well, but maybe others don't like it - definitely can't please everyone.
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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 26 Sep 2013, 12:42

salsaSkaarj wrote:I'm already planning free time to try ?difficulty=6 (luckily there's time for rest and recup between enemies)

Time found and done as stated.
And I even increased the tension by using only DP. I wouldn't recommend this if it's the first time you play Falcon Outpost because if you rush it and don't know where to retreat to ... chances are you'll be surrounded.
But, it's perfectly doable although it takes a long time to kill the enhanced Skaarj. The most dangerous part is the generator room (as UB mentioned). The first Skaarj can be killed without attracting the others, but the other ones will try to close in simultaneously. The low gravity increases the power of dodging and at the same time makes the Skaarj vulnerable to attacks while they are airborne. Same tactics for the Warlord who is easier to kill but this is the longest fight in the map since he can avoid DP bolts in mid-air.
My resumé now includes Falcon Outpost on highest difficulty, DP only and no reloading saved games (I did quicksave but never died). I going to give myself a :tup: here. \o/

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Subject: Re: [RELEASED] [u1][ut]Falcon Outpost

Post Posted: 09 Oct 2013, 09:48

Just got around to playing this. Unreal difficulty. Was fairly challenging, at a lot of points I had no ammo, and I don't think I was wasting too many shots, but at the same time the ammo provided felt fair and I wasn't left with nothing at crucial moments.
It's a cool map and I liked the unique theme + Mazon influence, however RCR and visual repetition started to creep in a little bit. A lot of times I didn't know where to go and just brute forced all the doors I hadn't opened yet until something happened.

Gothic Resurrection was definitely better work, but all up I enjoyed this. (I'd score it 6 on the old schema, while giving gothic 7 or 7.5)

Keep on mapping!
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