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Kroc

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  1. It's the secret level, I think? You buy a map from a guy at Michonne Somerville station for 150 junk. Later in the game, there's a level at the Choka Cola plant
  2. Okay finished it, 7:23 for a fairly relaxed playthrough trying to soak in the atmosphere and collect everything. Last bug, there's a soft-lock here, you can't get past them. Had to noclip through them to continue. That operatic Ashes theme was magic, fantastic work by Mr. Weekley. My final thoughts on the game: The Ashes formula is retained and the same magic combination of atmosphere, set pieces and clever tricks are all there, however I could not shake the feeling that the whole lacked detail and polish. You have these top-notch moments like the school, the fun-house, the mall but you are faced with *a lot* of plainness / emptiness throughout and, at least for me, the immersion is broken. Your best work is in highly thematic enclosed areas that twist around themselves in interesting ways, or at least a strong sense of narrative direction that drives the navigation. I hope one day you do an oil-rig. There are whole open spaces in Hard Reset that have little to say for themselves other than some sectors to pad between this one space and another, for example; the open area between main Corden and the building you go up to find the guy for the doc. It's just a convenient outdoor space but it doesn't say anything about the city, Corden or the history of the space and how it's been repurposed. The rail sidings by the exit to Michonne station where there's a water pit that lead off one way in the other game. Not even a gasbag there (at least on normal difficulty). That whole area just before the tube floods and you have to turn the wheel to lower the water; was there supposed to be a big fight there? Any enemies at all? I kept coming across areas that were spartan but not detailed enough to do any environmental story telling; something Ashes is good at when it focuses. The sound design is okay, but not amazing, and there was a general rushed / unpolished aspect to the maps. Many sectors had the wrong sounds, no sounds where there probably should be and there needed to be more variety to the sounds available. In those detailed parts, like the school, there was attention to sound where the designer needed to press lightly against the player but the overall 'environmental simulation' lacked the same attention (i.e. the verisimilitude of objects, environment and scenery) although not entirely absent; I noticed different floor sounds when walking and environmental effects likes echo/reverb. Voice work was okay but never bad, probably held back mostly by the volunteers talking into basic microphones without enough enunciation and force where they should be projecting their voice with clarity. The voice work is mumbly and indistinct, but they did very good given this isn't a professional product. The use of an all-caps font and the width of paragraphs on screen remain difficult to read. Subtitling is inconsistent. The enemy A.I. was a problem. You have at least 3 enemy types that all use the same hyper-skittish A.I. and it gets tripped up on the simplest geometry as well as being frustrating. It is best to not engage and just back off until you kite the AI into a pattern that lets you get straight shots at it. Pacing of fights could be broken easily by noise -- despite going in the side entrance of Choka Cola, one shot and almost the entire building empties itself directly into the one corner. There should have been a deaf sector to separate the atrium from the museum part maybe? Other than the worms -- brilliant by the way, one of the most memorable enemies in any game -- less care was given to careful introduction and narrative build up as there was in the first game. I liked the hard point switch mechanic, made the pistol more useful. The crossbow was way too slow to be practical given the speed at which the basic pistol could do similar sniping duties, I barely used it, and likewise it relegated the explosive bolts to rare, highly specific use. I was definitely feeling the lack of an adequate rocket launcher equivalent. The magic is there but I can feel the fast pace in the mapping, of slapping down sectors and moving on. Better it be finished and released in a rushed state than not; finishing and releasing *anything* is a tough mountain to climb and I applaud you for putting out such an enjoyable and riveting game for free.
  3. The mall was truly excellent, I was worried this was going to be a bit of a rehash after malls being featured in the other entries in the series but the surprise enemy was too damn good; absolutely genius. New bugs / fixes: Missing text: These panes can be walked through. And yes, I wasn't going to put down the ball until I could kill something with it. If doom had achievements, this would be one. I had a hard time realising I need to crowbar the door to get in -- nowhere else in the game is this the case and the game already contains too many examples of barred doors you can't beat down so I had no indication that I could do it to this one -- interestingly, you can throw the bowling ball *through* the door, which is how I worked it out! These mannequins on the left side aren't solid / can't be hit, unlike the ones on the right side. These elevator doors and the flood door at the bottom of the black-water pit have the wrong kind of sounds. Should sound more like knocking on a metal sheet. A lot of doors in general have incorrect sounds and the game is missing a "shaking a chain-link fence like you're Sarah Conner" sound that would suit a number of textures. Missing texture in the submerged buildings area: So there's that bit where you can hide in an RV whilst the mutants swarm you and those really big mutants that move super fast and skittish are way too quick. Either you get mauled to death outside or you hide in the RV and then can't get a shot in because they move side to side impossibly quick. They need a slight nerf in the side-to-side speed even if you don't slow down their forward momentum.
  4. Thinking about it, here’s my suggestion: If you choose to pay at the front gate to get in then you are given an option in the car park to say your military mates are happy to pay; this will place you and the national guards you’re escorting into the between-gates space below the car park, where a black water bandit says this is a heist and *then* the fight breaks out. This gives the player a choice of a heavy support option for the inevitable fight.
  5. Yeah, is there _really_ no way to get through Cordon without a *massive* immediate gun-fight? I wasn't going to leave without my 100% but I had the feeling I was missing a possible option to sneak through unharmed and go back and clean up. Also, the ending of that level was... what's the secret of black water? I didn't get my answer :shrug:
  6. Simple question: Am I supposed to somehow do prison before I go to spire? I couldn't find a way to choose it, now I'm on my way to spire and I'm wondering if I've locked myself out of a side-quest :(
  7. 1, maybe 2 bugs. On the farm, when you enter the 2nd room only accessible by duct, no amount of crouch-jumping will get me back in the pipe. On the other end when you exit the duct, you likewise can't enter it again but this could be intentional(?) to prevent back tracking at that point. A quick 'nother one. You *can* make that jump off the caravan and get out of town the wrong way:
  8. That first level, just wow. Perfect blend of Ashes slow burn, setup (hinting that what you don't want to happen, is going to happen), and intensity.
  9. Kroc

    DOOM: THE DARK AGES (DOOM 6)

    If you can't examine it, pull it apart, mod it and improve it then all discussion ends with what iD decides to do with it. If original DOOM weren't open source it would have been forgotten long ago as a great game, but something stuck in the past that requires some fiddling to get running on new machines, like Daggerfall -- great game, but flawed, and trapped in stasis as the same game it always was even after mods and open-source engine recreations have appeared. DOOM without things like Ashes, Total Chaos or The Golden Souls would just be DOOM.
  10. Kroc

    DOOM: THE DARK AGES (DOOM 6)

    Until nudoom is open source (seriously iD, 2016 was a looong time ago), all discussion about it will ultimately go nowhere.
  11. I'm about 115 hours into playing Oblivion atm, and I'm sure this is going to derail me :P The Ashes series has been, hands-down, one of the best FPSes I've ever experienced; commercial or otherwise.
  12. Kroc

    DOOM: THE DARK AGES (DOOM 6)

    Just for fun, I'm putting my chips on this being Quake or Hexen retconned into the DOOM universe
  13. Bump. All the best David. Can I please request that this time around, each level portal has a thumbnail like DUMP3? It makes it much easier to orientate yourself and locate your favourite levels again. (I'm mostly finished with RAMP2022, haven't done 2023 yet) YT vid looks like this has already been done, great!
  14. Kroc

    MyHouse.wad

    Oh, then you'll probably enjoy the technical deconstruction of how MyHouse works:
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