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Bridgeburner56

The Age of Hell: FPS game for GZDoom - DEMO OUT

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58 minutes ago, game said:

 

Is there a bigger cover version to juxtapose with The Ultimate Doom cover art?

Coming soon :D

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I had fun with the demo! But some feedback.

 

-The pistol needs a serious balance pass. As long as your index finger could keep up, not even the dude with the double hammers stood a chance. Using the chaingun felt like a waste of ammo. The shotgun felt similarly powerful. I only used the chaingun when my index finger was tired. 

-In general though, the time to kill seem a bit low with some exceptions with the brutes (I noticed the baron looking guys and the double hammer guy actually having some health). I guess this is to suit the slaughter aesthetic (high monster count). It's a shame though, because the monster art looks phenomenal and currently they don't have the meatiness that their artwork makes them out to be. This was especially noticeable with the revenants and the wolves.

-The HUD cannot be scaled unless you change the resolution scale in the display settings. Is this intentional? I'd like to play in 4K without having to lower the resolution just to see the HUD. 

-Having some options to reduce the foliage would be nice. I suspect my slowdowns (I occasionally dipped below 60) were due to engine constraints. (Running i7-8700k with RTX 3080 on an SSD).

-The monster teleportation animation is a touch obnoxious when it gets to the part when the rift closes. It just seems so big, especially when a lot of monsters are teleporting at once. 

 

I look forward to seeing the final product!

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Posted (edited)

Well, this is more 'in development' than I thought it was.

 

The sound, man, the sound. It's barely done.

 

-I don't like the shotgun sound.

-The sound mixing feels wrong. I have to raise  the volume too much to hear the monsters, then my weapons are too loud.

-Where are the enemy sounds? Where are their growls? And their sound attacks? And the sound of projectiles flying around? Did I download the wrong file? The game is literally 50% harder than it should be because this.

 

The pistol having a bigger dps than the shotgun feels weird, too. I have to get accustomed to using sprint, but that's on me.

I like the more powerful alternate fire but having to be recharged.

Edited by Turin Turambar

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15 minutes ago, Turin Turambar said:

The pistol having a bigger dps than the shotgun feels weird

Considering the fact shotgun technically has faster, better DPS (8 consecutive semi-auto shots before reloading/pumping) and a pretty strong altfire, I don't really see how this is true.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, TheNoob_Gamer said:

Considering the fact shotgun technically has faster, better DPS (8 consecutive semi-auto shots before reloading/pumping) and a pretty strong altfire, I don't really see how this is true.

 

The pellets the weapons use are not universal like doom is. Something in the code is causing the pistol pellets to be a lot more damaging than the others. 

 

edit: To reproduce this, you can summon a revenant upon map load and notice it only goes down to 12 pistol shots. The chaingun gobbles almost 40 before the revenant dies to a chaingun, or 4 shots to the shotgun.

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The pistol is a bit op, this was to make it useful, rather than the average pistol. It's of no real use when fighting the bigger battles tho, so the other weapons really come into their own at that point.

 

And the majority of fights in AoH are pretty big.

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12 vs 40 bullets on a revenant is a pretty big difference. That number adds up if you end up using the pistol in a larger battle. Something needs to make it less useful, like perhaps a reload?

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, SyntherAugustus said:

That number adds up if you end up using the pistol in a larger battle

Considering the enemy changes and the average map scale, I think using a pistol killing everything would be rather tedious.

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Well, all feedback is appreciated. I personally think the chaingun could do with being more powerful, the reload is an interesting idea, but ultimately there will be a lot more tweaks and balancing changes coming in the future, especially with the demo release and more public feedback.   

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2 hours ago, TheNoob_Gamer said:

Considering the fact shotgun technically has faster, better DPS (8 consecutive semi-auto shots before reloading/pumping) and a pretty strong altfire, I don't really see how this is true.

The shotgun has clearly slower RoF, and it needs to reload like you said. You can smash the pistol trigger unlike the shotgun, and over long period of times the dps is bigger because you don't waste time reloading it.

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Feedback after playing. Mostly concerned with some things that really piss me off re gzdoom and would be super nice to have changed in some sort of stand alone gzdoom game.

 

1. Remove all of the out of box options screens in gzdoom and rebuild all of them from scratch for your mod. To date I still have no idea where anything is in those menus and it would be great to simply have a screen for the usual suspects in other games to streamline menus for stuff like controls and video settings. I am aware of the search function in options but I have never needed something like this in any game I have played. If there is a way to group related graphical settings together into a low medium high format then that would be ideal (like.. lighting low = changes a whole bunch of things behind the scenes to reflect what you determine to be low lighting setting). Maybe look at what other games have done and implement what makes sense for a gzdoom engine game.

2. For the beta I am not sure if I can rescale the hud? I would like to in low/potato because the hud is incredibly large using the lower setting batch files included with the demo (potato is unplayable with the hud present).

 

The pistol is quite powerful. I didn't really use the chaingun at all for this reason when I noticed it used ammo like the super nailgun in quake.

 

No idea what mainstream users would like re gameplay. I thought it was all good I guess until the final fight where I circle strafed for the entirety of it - I think the cyb replacements ended up killing the thing in the center which ended the map.

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On 8/15/2021 at 7:14 AM, SyntherAugustus said:

-The pistol needs a serious balance pass. As long as your index finger could keep up, not even the dude with the double hammers stood a chance. Using the chaingun felt like a waste of ammo. The shotgun felt similarly powerful. I only used the chaingun when my index finger was tired. 

We only changed the pistol to semi auto at the last minute so yeah, it's probably a bit out of whack at the moment. We'll probably add in a fire rate limiter and drop the damage per hit. We're also going to add an alt fire to the pistol just to make it more fun (currently thinking a charge up piercing shot).

 

On 8/15/2021 at 7:14 AM, SyntherAugustus said:

In general though, the time to kill seem a bit low with some exceptions with the brutes (I noticed the baron looking guys and the double hammer guy actually having some health). I guess this is to suit the slaughter aesthetic (high monster count). It's a shame though, because the monster art looks phenomenal and currently they don't have the meatiness that their artwork makes them out to be. This was especially noticeable with the revenants and the wolves.

What difficulty did you play on? Difficulty 4 has the base line HP and it lower as you go easier, and increases on difficulty 5. I'm pretty happy with the overall HP levels of the enemies. Glad you like the art (all @TheMisterCat's fine work).
 

On 8/15/2021 at 7:14 AM, SyntherAugustus said:

The HUD cannot be scaled unless you change the resolution scale in the display settings. Is this intentional? I'd like to play in 4K without having to lower the resolution just to see the HUD. 

This is something we will be addressing. The HUD code is pretty bare bones at the moment

 

On 8/15/2021 at 7:14 AM, SyntherAugustus said:

Having some options to reduce the foliage would be nice. I suspect my slowdowns (I occasionally dipped below 60) were due to engine constraints. (Running i7-8700k with RTX 3080 on an SSD). 

We've got some detail level sliders for things like gore. Could probably do a specific one for greenery too without too much trouble

 

On 8/15/2021 at 7:14 AM, SyntherAugustus said:

The monster teleportation animation is a touch obnoxious when it gets to the part when the rift closes. It just seems so big, especially when a lot of monsters are teleporting at once. 

You can get some weird stretching effects so we'll look at this.
Thanks for playing :D
 

14 minutes ago, Killer5 said:

Remove all of the out of box options screens in gzdoom and rebuild all of them from scratch for your mod. To date I still have no idea where anything is in those menus and it would be great to simply have a screen for the usual suspects in other games to streamline menus for stuff like controls and video settings. I am aware of the search function in options but I have never needed something like this in any game I have played. If there is a way to group related graphical settings together into a low medium high format then that would be ideal (like.. lighting low = changes a whole bunch of things behind the scenes to reflect what you determine to be low lighting setting). Maybe look at what other games have done and implement what makes sense for a gzdoom engine game.

Yeah there's still a lot of stuff we want to do to the menu that's only just started being implementing. At the end of the day there will only be game specific options and it will be much better streamlined than the standard gzdoom menu and we are aiming to have a bunch of presets that do exactly that, change a bunch of settings behind the scene. We've already started with the current performance batch files (like potato mode lol). Definitely work in progress at the moment though.
Same re: hud scaling
 

 

17 minutes ago, Killer5 said:

No idea what mainstream users would like re gameplay. I thought it was all good I guess until the final fight where I circle strafed for the entirety of it - I think the cyb replacements ended up killing the thing in the center which ended the map. 

We had to tailor things to make the demo playable for a wider audience than your usual Doom map. The final fight used to be A LOT harder but testers were really struggling with it with all the new mechanics. I will say though if you want a better challenge try Tormented difficulty. You definitely wont be able to just circle strafe the final arena (or at least I wasn't able to lol). Curious what difficulty you ended up playing on.
The ending is currently a place holder. We want to add a boss fight which is why it's a bit disjointed how it can end suddenly

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I was on skill 4. I think it might have been just the pistol being unbalanced and dropping every low level monster like flies. It just looked weird since even the low level monsters look beastly (especially the wolves) and I start with a pistol that shreds them.

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I don't want to be nasty here or anything. But I do feel a need to provide some feedback after attempting (and failing) to complete the demo at what I understand to be the default difficulty setting (Skill 4, or at least the one that you start on when you select New Game and don't adjust up or down, which I assume to be the default setting). I'm not new to Doom, I've played multiple modified Wads and mods, from Remain III to Golden Souls to Black Magnetic, so I don't want this criticism to come off as me putting down the new monsters or weapons, which I actually quite like, especially the automatic fire of the shotgun replacement. But I couldn't finish this, despite multiple attempts and multiple saves (down to basically save-scumming the courtyard encounter after running out of ammo). I've finished your maps in Mapwich II and the infamous Bastion of Chaos on HMP; I expected that would give me enough grit to complete what should be an introduction and solid indication of what to expect from the final product, but this... I'm genuinely extremely sorry to say I wasn't having much fun here. I couldn't keep my ammo levels at a reasonable rate (or stocked at all in the open courtyard) despite making sure I was moving around the battlefield and collecting every available pickup, and I actually ran out of ammo trying to kill the first Juggernaut (which is just a sponge of a target in general), and even after using the power-up and trying to kill as many enemies as possible in the big outdoor fight, I ran bone dry and had to quit after opening the doors with the Golden Key, spending the four shells from the box on a single target. And I need to stress I ran multiple sweeps trying to get more ammunition; I simply couldn't deal with the amount of enemies. And look, I get that this is slaughter-style, and that's fine, I played through Slaughtermax, I appreciate a good slaughtermap (look at what Anatres has done), but if the balance isn't there it just becomes tedious and frustrating. I truly want to love this Wad, I've been following its progress since the beginning, I downloaded the demo right away and waiting until I had ample time to really play and savor it... but between the Juggernaut killing me like a Cyberdemon and not being able to deal with the opposition due to not having the resources, I just don't think I can return to this in its current state. I wish you the best of luck with this project, but if these concerns aren't addressed a bit more carefully, I don't think I can bring myself to keep pushing. And I'm truly sorry to have to say that, but I really wanted to enjoy this more than I did.

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Spoiler

WDNpDPp.jpg

 

My dream game would be something with such cool gothic themes and fun gameplay like in Doom. So literally The Age Of Hell. I'm a bit heartbroken therefore, as the demo performed poorly on my new PC, even though I haven't had any problems with running new games before. 640x480 arguably does fuck all in terms of speeding up gzdoom. The graphic designs are gorgeous and atmospheric but it's pretty hard to have fun with such choppy framerate. Man, time and again I only find more hate for this source port.

 

Some remarks I gathered from my short gameplay session:

 

- The movement is not necessarily bad but you could experiment with it because it's pretty similar to standard shitty gzdoom movement. Well, at any rate it's awkward to drift on the floor like this with low framerate.

- The game will benefit a lot if you add much sound feedback from the monsters. Growls, howls, cackles, etc.

- I imagine the hud elements won't be adjusted for it but I hope you at least won't block players from setting up such "retro mode" filtre like in my screenshots above (320x200 scaling). As a side note, the recent Quake Enhanced has a fantastic retro filtre - chunky pixels simply rule.

- For future content I recommend not making enormous maps, with big textures, extra effects, or whatever it is that affects the performance so dramatically. Those things really are not needed. Hexen already was a gorgeous gothic game that came out almost 30 years ago. The problem with Hexen was that the gameplay sucked.

 

On the whole, thank you for this wonderful project, my excitement about it hasn't dwindled even though I don't feel particularly compelled to return to the demo right now. But I probably will anyway - stuttery, but kinda is playable still.

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6 hours ago, game said:
  Reveal hidden contents

 

My dream game would be something with such cool gothic themes and fun gameplay like in Doom. So literally The Age Of Hell. I'm a bit heartbroken therefore, as the demo performed poorly on my new PC, even though I haven't had any problems with running new games before. 640x480 arguably does fuck all in terms of speeding up gzdoom. The graphic designs are gorgeous and atmospheric but it's pretty hard to have fun with such choppy framerate. Man, time and again I only find more hate for this source port.

 

What are your specs? if you're not having trouble with new games then you shouldn't be having this much trouble with GZDoom, and the framerate is usually fine on mid-range machines with all the feedback we've had.

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14 hours ago, 666shooter said:

I couldn't keep my ammo levels at a reasonable rate

 

From what I've seen (as a beta tester) I don't recall many other people having trouble with ammo availability. A couple of things spring to mind as to why you might have done:

 

- Make sure to use the Alt-Fire when you can. Over the course of the map it makes quite a big difference to the damage you can output.

- Remember about the hammer. It's a very strong melee weapon and can take down individual enemies, or small groups of low level enemies, with ease (if you use the combo system properly). 

 

Also, use the difficulty settings! Lower difficulty settings actually give the monsters slightly less health, and they become easier targets (slower attack animations) so you should find your ammo goes a lot further. It's not like in Doom where lower difficulties just remove enemies, it's a lot more nuanced than that (and better balanced imo).

 

7 hours ago, game said:

For future content I recommend not making enormous maps, with big textures, extra effects

 

You might as well ask the team to make a different game. Enormous maps with big textures and extra effects is kind of the whole point. That being said, there will be variations in level sizes and performance optimisations are on-going. 

 

However, if what you really want is a chunky ultra-retro Hexen-alike played at 320x200, that just won't ever be this game I'm afraid.

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If you've got a potato, you may be interested in these benchmarks to find out which config gives you the best performance on your system.

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Actually I launched the game 15 minutes ago and actually having some fun. I tweaked some settings:

 

Vsync On

Bloom Off

Shadowmap Quality 128

Shadowmap Filter Nearest

 

The framerate kept jumping between 38 and 60 and it was somewhat playable.

I don't see a difference in performance when I lower the resolution from 1080p, this has always been the case.

Thanks again for the demo. I'm gonna let all my friends know about this.

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9 minutes ago, game said:

Actually I launched the game 15 minutes ago and actually having some fun. I tweaked some settings:

 

Vsync On

Bloom Off

Shadowmap Quality 128

Shadowmap Filter Nearest

 

The framerate kept jumping between 38 and 60 and it was somewhat playable.

I don't see a difference in performance when I lower the resolution from 1080p, this has always been the case.

Thanks again for the demo. I'm gonna let all my friends know about this.

you're still not telling us what your computer specs are. this is important feedback as we need to know for minimum spec purposes. Also, ensure you are playing with Vulkan mode (this should be default but double check on your end).

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Sorry for that. I have   Windows 10,  Ryzen 5 3.59Ghz,    Geforce GTX 1660,  16GB RAM

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2 minutes ago, game said:

Sorry for that. I have   Windows 10,  Ryzen 5 3.59Ghz,    Geforce GTX 1660,  16GB RAM

Yeah, with a 1660 I wouldn't imagine having too much trouble, just ensure you're using Vulkan for best results, etc. kinda strange it's lagging for you.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Bauul said:

 

From what I've seen (as a beta tester) I don't recall many other people having trouble with ammo availability. A couple of things spring to mind as to why you might have done:

 

- Make sure to use the Alt-Fire when you can. Over the course of the map it makes quite a big difference to the damage you can output.

- Remember about the hammer. It's a very strong melee weapon and can take down individual enemies, or small groups of low level enemies, with ease (if you use the combo system properly). 

 

I replayed the demo as a show of good faith, and had somewhat more success using the hammer (though I still can barely dodge any of these projectiles and am constantly tanking damage and struggling to stay alive; their timing and patterns are very difficult to understand intuitively, they seem to move much more quickly than a standard imp or baron fireball, for example, and as such I can rarely stay above 40-50 HP). There appear to be two moves the game wants me to use that I don't know the default mapping for (and couldn't find in the controls anywhere): a Dash technique, and the Hammer Throw (which I collected a power-up for before the portal to the arena battle but never made use of because I didn't know the mapping, which was frustrating). Having used the hammer a bit more extensively, its decent as a melee weapon, if not as powerful as I'd like, but I feel it could use some advantages in a game that drowns you in waves of enemy spawns like this. Perhaps the ability to regain health for every kill? Or to make enemies drop armor (which feels in desperate supply with how fast and brutally the damage is flying). I did better with the overall ammo a second time, but still ran dry at that second door in the courtyard area (I don't think a resupply would be unwarranted, especially for people who are trying to kill everything, the entrenched foes are absolutely obnoxious to deal with even without an ammo shortage due to how many projectiles you'll be facing at once).

I hated the final arena fight initially, felt so miserably under-powered with every given weapon, and almost called it quits when the Pain Elemental replacements showed up. It was the virtual equivalent of firing paintballs at a block of cement, squinting to see if I was making any impact with the visual overload (and I like that swath of color, but not when I'm dodging homing missiles). I'm still not super convinced that the balancing is right for Skill 4 still, if that truly is intended as the "Normal/HMP" default. Playing larger maps with over 1000 foes and sinking four or five shotgun rounds into a single target is just going to get tedious too quickly; its already wearing me down here and we barely hit 600. I think bigger or more powerful weapons are going to have to come into play (or more extensive power-ups), or I'm going to end up save-scumming just because I don't want to grind through the same portions of later fights. I know, I'm showing my pride here- I don't normally play on UV the first time, but I've also never had to go below HMP, and it's not that I can't win here, its just that the combat still feels like a bit of a slog and its more debilitating that exciting. Still love the aesthetics and it was worth trying out just to see that final arena and the grottoes themselves are pretty lovely too. I hope some of this feedback is helpful and doesn't come off merely as complaining; I've played so many Wads that have great foundations and sometimes great levels where I end up thinking, "If only that weapon had been placed earlier or this encounter had been tweaked a bit..." and I want to see this project continue to grow and evolve into something as breathtaking as every screenshot and teaser GIF has proclaimed.

[Sorry I forgot to put my reply outside of the quote and didn't want to accidentally delete it.]

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OK. I just played the demo. Quite a superb demo I can say.

 

The monsters felt good in terms of attacks, animations and....geez I love the death animations man. It was satisfactory. The weapons were also good, each one with its own purpose:

  • The pistol is good for single targets and I found it great for sniping, since it has 100% accuracy. Decent damage too.
  • The holy shotgun is good enough for a sort of crowd control but it works better for single targets as well. The fire attribute is what stand the most to weaken the bastards. Damage seems fine but needs to be a bit close to the target.
  • The holy moly chaingun was great. I loved this weapon so far. Perfect for crowd control and eats bullets like nothing, especially when it's used with the mana. Those big fools dies painfully...
  • The trinity launcher...do I need to say more honestly? Splat them and, by using the mana alt attack, it's better. 
  • The hammer..............oh, good hammer. I like that, in the map on the demo, it has 2 upgrades to choose for different situations that the player will face. It was great overall and I used a lot, trying to save ammo as well. Basically, a holier version of Thor's hammer, except that takes a while to be worthy. Nuff said.
  • I didn't used the fists, not even once. Why? Because of the hammer. I don't know if the fists should be in the game since the pistol does a good job to kill the monsters, as a starting weapon and the hammer shows up at any time, providing enough firepower for free.

About the map itself, as a demo, it was a sneaky tutorial for the entirety of the map, showcasing the powerups, weapons, monsters, the environment and the hazards. The addition of "holy" mana is appreciated to have a different approach for the fights. I gotta say that, the golden key area was the one that lagged me the most, due of all of the clusterfuck shown at once with all the special effects such as teleports, monsters shooting at you and all of that stuff. In that same area, I found that it was the hardest encounter by far...not even the final fight can compare to the mess of that area.

Speaking of the final area...the area before that was breathtaking and it serves as a purpose to build up the moment. The camera cutscene showing the whole arena was just the tip of the iceberg for the big fight that happens later. If you know how to run in circles, trying to avoid the whole bullet hell and killing the spawned monsters, it should be fine to clear the map without dying and not even saving the game the whole time. That is, be aware of the powerups scattered in the area such as the soulspheres, the pentasphere (same as quad damage) and the templar sphere (holier megasphere)...use them well.

Overall, it was a great experience that, as a first map coming from a guy who does hard-as-fuck-but-still-clear-able maps, it wasn't a really hard map. It's good for people that wants a casual gameplay but, don't underestimate the map progression though, because a fair amount of deaths will happen anyway. 

 

I took the .ipk3 file from the zip to play it and, yes I know that are batch files to play the game in different performance settings but I wanted to see how my notebook performs the demo. I should say that runs good enough but still, it needs a good computer to run that madness of a demo :D

 

AH YEAH............................I forgot the music..............................

One word: Fan-fucking-tastic. That's all.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, 666shooter said:

 I'm still not super convinced that the balancing is right for Skill 4 still, if that truly is intended as the "Normal/HMP" default.

 

Age of Hell is considerably harder than Doom is generally in my experience, especially if you're not very used to fighting slaughterfights.   The range of difficulty settings generally seem to skew much harder than the ones in Doom.  So a lot of the things you talk about finding particularly difficult (like projectiles moving very quickly) are different on lower difficulties.  

 

1 hour ago, 666shooter said:

I know, I'm showing my pride here- I don't normally play on UV the first time, but I've also never had to go below HMP

 

I think this is where you're coming unstuck.  Remember this is a different game to Doom, and just because you can play most Doom wads at HMP doesn't mean that'll be the same for Age of Hell.  Different game, different difficulties.  The purpose of the difficulty settings is to allow you to adjust the game to present a fair but enjoyable challenge.  If your chosen difficulty setting is too hard to the extent the game isn't fun, then the solution is to play on a lower difficulty.  

 

If you ever play the demo again, or even the full game, my recommendation would be to focus on the experience you are actually having and adjust the difficulty from there, rather than struggling against some arbitrary difficulty setting you believe you "should" be able to beat based on your experiences of a different game. 

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Posted (edited)

this is coming along well! i echo much of the praise above for the mapping and general vibe and will just bring my criticisms to the table:

 

mostly, my issues are sensory - i feel somewhat blinded and deafened (more than usual!) while playing. visually, it's pretty tough to get a read on what the enemies are up to, partially because they're so frequently in extremely low light, and partially because their movements aren't all that obvious (their more complex silhouettes definitely compound the issue). also found it tough to see various pickups aside from the glowing bonuses. i wound up mostly accidentally stumbling on them rather than actually seeing something and making my way to it intentionally. if it were my project i'd light up the powerups a bit (and the enemies too, if possible) or at least offer an option for it. i tried boosting the gamma, as well, which helped a bit, but started to take away from the map lighting. this combined with softer audio feedback can make the whole texture a bit mushy - sharpening some of the audio cues by making them louder and giving them less attack time would help a ton. as it stands the audio is just kind of a wash of wooshes and gurgles that's really hard to make heads or tails of. it's not necessarily about making everything loud so much as it is about making it dynamic. giving every sound its own space to exist in that is totally different from other sounds is huge.

 

i'd also look into some audio feedback on the hammer - i was never sure when it was ready to throw, i just kinda had to feel it out and guess. the hammer blinking and it playing a sound of some kind would do wonders for how good the weapon feels. a little more feedback on the alt fire meter might also be nice - a sound different from the "no ammo" sound would help differentiate it from actually having no ammo, and notifying the player when they have enough to use it would also be fantastic. the bar doesn't have the same granularity or immediate intuitiveness as a numerical display, but it can with the right presentation! (if these audio cues *do* exist and i missed them, take this as criticism that the cues need to be clearer - i work with audio all day every day and tend to be pretty sensitive to sounds, so when i miss something i feel like something's definitely unclear)

 

there are performance issues on my 2060ti and piledriver cpu (averaging 30fps on "low" with the video scaling option turned off, high is virtually unplayable (i'm overselling it, but it stutters down to 15ish too frequently)) but that's mostly out of your hands given the scope of the project - so much of gzdoom being on cpu rather than gpu is a pain in the ass. i will say that the video scaling option doesn't actually do much in most cases, so i'd leave it out of the low settings and relegate it to the potato mode only. not sure why there are texture filter settings in low/potato either, as nearest neighbour will always perform fastest. something you can do is look into precaching sounds and actors via mapinfo to help reduce stuttering when new monsters and sounds show up! it's an easy fix that can help a bunch.

Edited by msx2plus

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Oooohh lots of new feedback to wake up to. *sips coffee*

@666shooter Thanks for playing and sorry that you didn't enjoy the experience. I will say that it does sound like a lower difficulty would've been more fun for you. Monster HP is decreased and ammo from picks are increased (among many other mechanical tweaks) as you lower difficulty. Playing on Furious Vengeance (our UV) does require you to make good use of alt fires, the hammer and power ups. Keep in mind that the thrown hammer is essentially an infinite ammo rocket launcher and you can kill a lot of enemies in a single combo.
The rage sphere in the big courtyard arena is enough to kill 60% of the enemies in that area without using any ammo and with almost zero risk with the live steal and 66% damage reduction that powerup gives you. And there are 3 pentaspheres (5x damage) in the final arena which provides more than enough fire power to wipe that place clean quickly.
Having FV as the "default difficulty" was not intended so we'll most likely change what the game points at first when you get to the difficulty screen. We're also looking into have tool tip pop ups as you go through the difficulty options to let the player know what they're in for (although this is already in the manual).
I'm generally very happy with the current balance in terms of difficulty but it has been very interesting hearing what people think. Some people said FV felt too easy, others too hard. And this is not going to change (varied opinions) but it shows the importance of AoH managing the expectations of the player and guiding them to the difficulty that they will find the most fun.

Re: stuttering comments from @game and @msx2plus this has been experienced by a few people and it's separate to general performance. 2 main causes so far have been vsync (Icarus had this issue) and some graphics cards just not liking shaders (more common with AMD cards). I was actually expecting more comments regarding performance from the general player base but they have been relatively few which to me points to this being a specific compatibility issue, rather than linked broad performance problems (more on that later). That being said it is a fairly taxing game and we are continuing to look for ways to optimise things. Still a work in progress
One thing that does give fps a MASSIVE boost is turning off "lights affect sprites". This will make some of the enemies harder to see in places and we are working on making brightmaps for all enemies to help counter this. The new demo build also has the overall light level lifted by 16 across the entire map.


 

1 hour ago, msx2plus said:

visually, it's pretty tough to get a read on what the enemies are up to, partially because they're so frequently in extremely low light, and partially because their movements aren't all that obvious (their more complex silhouettes definitely compound the issue). also found it tough to see various pickups aside from the glowing bonuses.

This is something we are working on. I agree that the enemies/pickups can be hard to see. The answer? MOAR BRIGHTMAPS :D There's been a little bit of work done on this for the demo update but this is more a long term thing we are working on. Things like a base level brightness for pickups will be implemented (FEAR does this well)

 

1 hour ago, msx2plus said:

sharpening some of the audio cues by making them louder and giving them less attack time would help a ton. as it stands the audio is just kind of a wash of wooshes and gurgles that's really hard to make heads or tails of

Sound design is definitely something we have been tweaking and things should be a lot clearer in the demo update. It's not complete by any means but it's a very difficult beast to manage (sound design), especially with gzdoom's sound channel limitations. This means that if there are too many sounds playing at once they get cancelled out.
We have added a bunch more sounds to the hammer but I don't think we have an audio cue for when it's ready to throw? Which is a good idea. There's a visual cue (the hammer crosshair lights up) but that can get lost in the wash of a busy fight.
 

 

1 hour ago, msx2plus said:

precaching sounds and actors via mapinfo

We will definitely be doing precaching of certain assets in the future.
 

1 hour ago, msx2plus said:

performance issues on my 2060ti

This is pretty similar to my gpu so you should definitely be getting better performance than what you're currently experiencing. GZDoom is weird lol.
There is something at the core of the assets that is more taxing than your usual Doom stuff. Some of it is related to the calls the enemies use but that's not the whole equation. I'll be doing some experimenting to try and figure out if there's a specific asset class chewing up cpu/gpu power in the background (doing this right now actually).

Thanks everyone for the feedback :D We definitely take these things on board and the game will be better for it.

If anyone has feedback from hammer mode I'd love to hear it. I think it's the best part of the demo once you get the rhythm down.

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totally missed the crosshair flash, it does indeed get lost sadly - i'll keep an ear out for how sound updates go down, thanks for being receptive!

 

gzdoom is indeed weird lol

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I do want to ask, since I think playing without these abilities probably had a significant impact on the experience for me, but what are the default bindings for hammer throw and the dash ability? Are they located in a section of Customize Controls I missed somewhere? I wouldn't mind even doing a third run through of this to see how much of an impact these skills have on the overall gameplay (it seems like hammer throwing is essential, but alt fire wasn't doing anything outside of the slam when I was playing).

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