AoMH SD Adventure contest 2020: Out Reach
Out Reach's entry to the 2020 contest. The scenario is titled "Fetch Quest" and is for AoM:EE.
||AoM:Tale of the Dragon
|Author||Comments & Reviews ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )|
This unofficial review was written for the Mini Adventure competition.
Please note that I got a bit too carried away when I was writing the review and perhaps had a little too much fun to overexaggerate about a lot of things. I felt like this entry was quite a bit less serious compared to the other entries and thought it would be fun to write a less serious review. Keep that in mind and don't take everything I wrote down too serious. Some nonsensical things (and hidden references) I mention may make more sense after you've played the scenario. So with all this being said, enjoy reading the review. :)
Oh boy, where do I even start. Yeah, hmmm... well, I guess that when you look at it from just the right angle, then you could say that whoever needs to look after the old man is in for quite an adventure, judging by how often he gets things lost in the middle of the jungle. But that’s not an adventure cut out for everyone. As for me, once I found some signs of life I just booked it man. Followed the road down south and never looked back.
Immersive storyline and experience (1/10)
This scenario offers an excellent insight on one of the most overlooked hardships of heroes: having to deal with obnoxiously needy people and their never-ending requests. I was mentally broken and gave up after 20 requests, so all my respect goes out to our fellow heroes that can put up with such people. So yeah there you have it, a truly immersive experience right here.
I got very moody because of the never-ending rain in what must have been the monsoon period time of the year. Let me tell you, it’s not an enjoyable atmosphere at that time of the year at all, no sir.
Relics are actually pretty hard to balance judging from their size and the location of their center of gravity. Let alone to balance a million of them. Nope, there’s just no way to properly balance all of that.
Map design (2/10)
If you ever wondered what a jungle would look like if its terrain got flattened by Thor’s mighty hammer, then look no further. This scenario has the world’s flattest jungle you’ll ever come across.
There’s some nice terrain mixing going on here. But there’s nothing natural about the single file trees at the edges of the map though. The nice little road and the lake are my personal favourites. Here’s why.
First, start off by stealing one of the many old man’s slippers that are scattered around the jungle - trust me you really can’t miss them. Then take a nice relaxing stroll around the lake which does require you to venture a bit through a black void. But to venture is part of an adventure, right? If you survived all that and you’re feeling extra adventurous, then perhaps dip your toes into the lovely puke-green colored lukewarm water which may or may not be radioactive. And finally follow the road down south to take you the hell out of this damn hellhole, *cough* I mean tropical paradise.
Aren’t you just getting tired of playing scenarios with all these so called ‘gameplay features’? It’s 2020, and don’t you think it’s about time to stop associating features with gameplay? Then this scenario is for you! Offering a variety of exciting non-gameplay features for you to enjoy, such as: developing self-restraint towards overly needy elderly, strengthening your mental state by doing excessively tedious tasks, doing some endurance training for the upcoming long distance national myth-a-thon, and more!
Final score: 10/70
[Edited on 08/14/20 @ 04:51 PM]
The core gameplay loop is a bit like a cookie clicker, you perform a repetitive task and get better and performing that repetitive task. As you perform the task you get different dialog.
I think concept has potential but the execution needs some tweaking to improve. Here are my thoughts on it:
(1)Your speed is really slow at the start and the rate it improves is too little. I think you should increase the reward to 0.4 or 0.5 so you really feel the speed picking up.
(2)The game is not clear that the relic needs to be dropped to count - I was walking around trying to get it activate and it was not working.
(3)The relic detection is a bit slow, this can be probably fixed with a higher priority trigger.
(4)The dialog speed could be a bit faster.
(5)I got a repeat pretty early on - I would try and find a way to avoid it repeating so frequently. Perhaps use "random without replacement" system.
(6)All the relics seemed to be far away - you should have some really close ones to mix it up and add to the joke that he wants you to fetch it.
(7)You should name the relics based on the item being collected for added immersion.
(8)And finally, you should have the old man get "stronger" as you get him the items so the joke id fetching items for him is getting more and more ridiculous.
Balance doesn't really have much meaning here. Instead escalation should be considered. In my view it is slow as mentioned in the gameplay section and needs to be increased so you feel like you are making progress (Even though you are not really as you need 1 million quests to win :) )
Most of the creativity comes from the joke being played. For idea itself I give good praise. I just wish for better execution. Oh and you should make the old man look as lazy as possible. :D (Put him sitting down on a crate or something :) )
Map Design: 3
The map has a basic, simplistic, but fitting layout. I would have liked to have seen some more use of elevation as the map feels a bit flat and provide a more natural edge. You got a line of trees but it is a single tile wide consistently - ending with trees is good but the thickness should differ. Perhaps for some of the other edges consider using some cliff and possibly imply the edge of the map is part of a lake.
I felt the instructions were relatively straight forward enough but I feel there could have been a little more. It would have been nice to get some background with why the old man is sending you after these items and what he is doing with them.
I feel like if the feedback from me and others are taken forwards this could be a great little jokey light hearted map with a bit of additional development.
[Edited on 08/14/20 @ 02:33 PM]
There was no lag or difficulty in moving my character whatsoever. The player was dropped right into the action from the get-go. My only issue with playability was that the relics weren't named, and thus, I had no idea that the relic was the item in question that I needed to return to the old man, until I returned it.
The map offered little in the way of challenging encounters. The only hurdle to overcome was opening the scenario in the editor and finding the name of the quest var in question and setting it to a million. I would say you should hide the quest var and the win condition in much less obvious locations.
Honestly, I found this pretty hilarious the first couple of runs. I think there wasn't much that could be improved in this department given the meta nature of the scenario, but what I would have found even more delightful would be if it was one of those chain quests, where you need an item which is given by another NPC, but in order for them to give it to you, you need to start a different fetch quest, which then leads you to another NPC that gives you another fetch quest, and so on and so forth.
Map Design: 2
Minimal effort was given to hide all the GrassA on the map.
The storyline wasn't too engaging. The old man was charismatic enough for me to simp for him for about ten minutes. Then I just went into the editor and set the quest var to the desired number lol. Again, the instructions were hurt a little because on the very first quest, it was unclear to me that I needed to bring the relic back to him. Naming the relics would have solved this issue.
Overall, I found it pretty funny. I'm not certain if I read every single possible quest, as I reached a point where I was getting repeats, but the ones I saw were pretty fun. HOW MUCH EROTIC FANFICTION DOES THIS OLD MAN HAVE?
As a direct result of our attachment to the comfort of routines, we are dropped off in a purgatory where we must do the same thing one million times. Satan is cleverly disguised as an old man that sends you to find various lost items.
Very soon, we will be tempted to go the underhanded way of editing the map to win right away. Given that we are already in hell, should we give in to this temptation?
Let's suppose we don't. If the average position of a relic is the center of the map, going there and back to the old man a million times would take roughly a year. We could make an AI to locate the white spot on the minimap and click the mouse, but that is the same as moving with triggers which is the same as editing to win right away. So the only way to truly win is to it ourselves, meaning it will take a lot more than a year as we have to eat and sleep. If we do 100 relics each day we could finish in 27 years. We do have to go to work or school every day and we don't complain about it, because we believe we gain something from it.
This map is everywhere in the world. Up and down, left and right, it goes in all directions. You could count the pixels on your screen or go and flip all the seashells and so on. It's not uncommon for less intelligent animals to get stuck on repetitive actions. If we go even lower, something like a coral or slime could actually finish this map the right way, if the right conditions are supplied. But they wouldn't understand what they achieved. However, humans evolved to filter out the actions that we don't see value in. But wait, doesn't that mean that a human could also complete this map like a slime or coral? Just make a universe that's mapped to control this scenario. Again we run into the issue that the human wouldn't understand what he achieved.
And so, heartbroken, we have to conclude that this map is no more than a statement of far we've come in terms of evolution.
Special thanks to everyone who enjoys... no endures this cursed map.