Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Mulf » 22 Mar 2017 13:22

[Vague spoiler warning]
I'm not 100% sure, but I'm fairly sure that the secret introduced in v.1.3 of "Manliness" is the one you can get after you're attacked by a bunch of SAS in a room with dark-blue tiles (where you also use a lever switch), and before you go over a steep slope back to an area you've visited before. It's in an alcove (crawlspace) a bit higher up in the wall, easily overlooked ("nothing spectacular, more a case of sharp eyes", to quote the readme), which is why it is a secret. :)
[End vague spoiler warning]

The secret that costs you a good chunk of your life, near the beginning, has also been there since the beginning (pretty much since day 1 of me building the damn thing). I originally wanted an unobtrusive ladder texture here leading to a secret, but found that the original City wad I was working with at the time did not contain the ladder-climbing animations (among other things), instead the camera went haywire and you could not longer tell what was going on. So I checked if the hole in ground served at least as a deadly trap for the less circumspective players, and lo and behold, you could even survive the fall—so I went ahead and made the secret anyway, without a ladder, and that's the way it remained ever since. I don't see how this is "unfair", especially since it's for a secret only.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by DJ Full » 22 Mar 2017 15:08

Mulf wrote:
22 Mar 2017 13:22
the secret introduced in v.1.3 of "Manliness" is the one you can get after you're attacked by a bunch of SAS
Right. So the one missing from the walkthru is the first one in order.

The secret that costs you a good chunk of your life, I wanted an unobtrusive ladder but the City wad did not contain the ladder-climbing animations
In such case you split the room into a vertical stack for a crack to grab mid-fall and land safely without any damage. It would be equally difficult but absolutely fair.

I don't see how this is "unfair", especially since it's for a secret only.
1) What is "secret only" for you, many players consider a crucial element.
2) As TombTitan said, we won't take a medikit so the life bar will blink for entire game.
3) As follows, every following combat will become much more difficult than you intended.

In short:
- a local mistake causes global gameplay damage.
- a "secret", by definition rewarding, becomes punishing.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Mulf » 22 Mar 2017 16:42

DJ Full wrote:
22 Mar 2017 15:08
In such case you split the room into a vertical stack for a crack to grab mid-fall and land safely without any damage. It would be equally difficult but absolutely fair.
Or you don't, and are unfair by your standards. I can live with that; I like the setup as it is, precisely because of the quandary into which it leads the player.
1) What is "secret only" for you, many players consider a crucial element.
If a secret is by definition rewarding (see below), it is even more so precisely not a crucial element.
2) As TombTitan said, we won't take a medikit so the life bar will blink for entire game.
Well, you make up your own rules, you have to live with the consequences, I'm afraid. :cheesy:
3) As follows, every following combat will become much more difficult than you intended.
Again, your choice. You're not going to pin that one on me.
In short:
- a local mistake causes global gameplay damage.
Whoa, hold your horses, good sir! All this drama is becoming too much for my poor heart to take!
- a "secret", by definition rewarding, becomes punishing.
Not really, it just becomes rewarding in a department other than health: you get ammo. And you're going to need it, especially when the game becomes so much more difficult than I intended it to be! :)

Finally, and back on topic: I've just had a look at the walkthrough, and it is indeed this secret (#1) that gets no mention there ("beware of the pit, jmp/grab over").
Last edited by Mulf on 22 Mar 2017 21:13, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Phil » 22 Mar 2017 19:36

Mulfisms are sorely missed and are as welcome in the Small Talk thread as they are in the walkthroughs themselves.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by DJ Full » 22 Mar 2017 19:38

Mulf wrote:
22 Mar 2017 16:42
I like the setup as it is, precisely because of the quandary into which it leads the player.
I would understand this approach if the whole game followed it. But if it's just one element in this style, it feels odd, not matching the rest. That's another reason why it feels wrong. If I'm not clear here's an example: there's a game Home Sweet Home 2, aimed precisely at clever medikit usage. If you're unwise you better restart the game, and that case is totally fair because a player is informed about it in the readme. In a regular exploration-challenge level like yours, nobody will expect it, that's why it doesn't work.

If a secret is by definition rewarding (see below), it is even more so precisely not a crucial element.
Sorry, but here I absolutely, completely, totally, wholeheartedly disagree. Reward is the very point of making a game. Not only TR but any game. It was always like that, there's nothing more crucial than to make a game rewarding.

Well, you make up your own rules, you have to live with the consequenes, I'm afraid. :cheesy:
I'm not making anything, those rules exist since the early days of gaming and again, not only TR but any gaming.

it just becomes rewarding in a department other than health: you get ammo.
I get your idea, but you forgot the very purpose of ammo is to save health in the first place. Therefore, if I can save health without picking up the ammo, the ammo stops to be a reward. That's why I don't consider it a fair trade like you do. EDIT: In the best case ammo saves both health and time. Double reward. If your secret saves at least time, I can agree it's partially rewarding.

Phil wrote:
22 Mar 2017 19:36
Mulfisms are sorely missed and are as welcome in the Small Talk thread as they are in the walkthroughs themselves.
Second that... :D


Ehm... on topic, on topic... Phil? I noticed the walkthru for Crystal of Life (Sabatu) lists a whole bunch of missing secrets, but I think it isn't true. Back then you possibly didn't know the number of secrets in TR3 engine is hardcoded to always display the same values no matter how many secrets are actually included. E.g. you can have 1/3 or 6/4 in stats, and both are true, of course if none was genuinely missed.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Mulf » 22 Mar 2017 21:38

DJ Full wrote:
22 Mar 2017 19:38
I would understand this approach if the whole game followed it. [...] In a regular exploration-challenge level like yours, nobody will expect it, that's why it doesn't work.
Nah, I wouldn't want to build en entire level around one specific aspect of anything, that would feel way too much like a training exercise. What's wrong with a little diversity in a game?
So it goes against a presumed player's expectations, does it? Well, good. That sounds commendatory to my ears. Or maybe the level in question isn't such a regular exploration-challenge level at all, have you considered that?
Sorry, but here I absolutely, completely, totally, wholeheartedly disagree. Reward is the very point of making a game. Not only TR but any game. It was always like that, there's nothing more crucial than to make a game rewarding.
This looks like a deliberate misunderstanding on your part. I'm clearly not saying a game shouldn't be rewarding, I'm saying that secrets are not crucial, essential, necessary for a game. You can deny that all day and all of the night, doesn't change he fact that that is...well, the fact. It's why they're secrets!
I'm not making anything, those rules exist since the early days of gaming and again, not only TR but any gaming.
Oh yes you do, you decide to play by two additional arbitrary rules (1. I'll get all secrets, every single one of them; 2. I will not be using any medipack). That's fine by me of course, I've played through TR2 that way once (another one, incidentally, that features major health loss from a fall in an environment rich in enemies, and not even for a secret), just don't pretend that's the only way (or even just the preferred way) of playing TR for each and everybody. :) Hey, how about you add "3. No kills" to your list?

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Phil » 22 Mar 2017 23:19

DJ Full wrote:
22 Mar 2017 19:38
Ehm... on topic, on topic... Phil? I noticed the walkthru for Crystal of Life (Sabatu) lists a whole bunch of missing secrets, but I think it isn't true. Back then you possibly didn't know the number of secrets in TR3 engine is hardcoded to always display the same values no matter how many secrets are actually included. E.g. you can have 1/3 or 6/4 in stats, and both are true, of course if none was genuinely missed.
At least I can understand Mulfisms. I have no idea what you're trying to communicate here. The walkthrough in question was written by multiple authors. Near the end, manarch2 reports that finding all previous secrets (59 of them) enables the player to access a bonus level. I haven't bothered to count all those secrets documented in the walkthrough, but since manarch2 tells you how you can access the bonus level without having found all 59, it's not really that important to me. As you may have guessed, I'm one of those players who considers the secret count (as well as medipack count and kill count) to be totally irrelevant to my enjoyment of a level.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by DJ Full » 23 Mar 2017 04:39

Mulf wrote:
22 Mar 2017 21:38
I wouldn't want to build en entire level around one specific aspect of anything, that would feel way too much like a training exercise. What's wrong with a little diversity in a game?
I don't mean build a game around a single concept but be consistent when using a specific kind of concept. It could be better if your game involved a regular health loss, so the players would learn "aha OK, that's it, I will just take medis and won't resist". Teaching your players wisely, you can make them accept anything non-standard. But a single unpleasant thing will never feel good.

So it goes against a presumed player's expectations, does it?
Having the health bar obliterated in the very beginning feels bad regardless from any expectations...

Or maybe the level in question isn't such a regular exploration-challenge level at all, have you considered that?
I didn't consider, I just checked. Willingfully or not, your level has both elements :)

I'm saying that secrets are not crucial, essential, necessary for a game.
Not "necessary" but IF they exist they should possess the reward factor, just like the main game does. Otherwise there's no point in creating them, just like there's no point in creating a non-rewarding game.

you decide to play by two additional arbitrary rules (1. I'll get all secrets, every single one of them; 2. I will not be using any medipack). Hey, how about you add "3. No kills" to your list?
Enemies may drop pickups so the first two rules are applicable on the first playthrough and the third one isn't. Games had kills, secrets and a no-medi option since the times of Mulfenstein... I mean Wolfenstein so the first two rules are rooted in tradition and natural to follow while the third one isn't. You picture them all as equally arbitrary - but they aren't. You think I follow rules out of my own caprice - but I don't. If I follow any rule, there's always a reason.

I've played through TR2 that way once, just don't pretend that's the only way (or even just the preferred way) of playing TR for each and everybody. :)
I don't pretend anything. You can play any way you want, that's your choice. But being able to choose is what defines a good game, so it's exactly what you shouldn't deny your players. They should choose to keep health or lose it. To use all weapons or just pistols. To find all secrets or none. If you take health by force, the choice is denied. This is the main, most important reason why it feels wrong and is so hard to live with.

(another one, incidentally, that features major health loss from a fall in an environment rich in enemies, and not even for a secret)
I hear this a lot. "Why do you complain if it was in the original game." This point was used to justify repeating the most severe mistakes by Core, while being in the original game doesn't mean they were the right move... but if we speak about it, I need to thank you very much for not including that crocodile in the underwater maze. This is what I call a much better way to oppose the standards. Highest regards.

Phil wrote:
22 Mar 2017 23:19
I have no idea what you're trying to communicate here.
I'm trying to convince Mulf he's right and I'm wrong... a normal day in my life :)

Near the end, manarch2 reports that finding all previous secrets (59 of them) enables the player to access a bonus level. I haven't bothered to count all those secrets documented in the walkthrough, but since manarch2 tells you how you can access the bonus level without having found all 59, it's not really that important to me.
Aaaah... this part is a bit unclear. The original TR3 had 59 secrets and granted a bonus level if you got them all. I think the same amount is required in custom levels of this engine. But Sabatu's game has much less, so accessing the bonus is impossible the legit way. That's why manarch describes the workaround. It's not optional - it's required.
As you may have guessed, I'm one of those players who considers the secret count (as well as medipack count and kill count) to be totally irrelevant to my enjoyment of a level.
Yes, all the lighting I make is for you.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Phil » 23 Mar 2017 17:36

DJ Full wrote:
23 Mar 2017 04:39
Yes, all the lighting I make is for you.
This comment beautifully summarizes the differences of opinion that have been expressed in the last couple of pages of this thread. Whether I missed a secret or two, or took longer than just about everyone else to play the level, or had to gulp down a medipack or two along the way, doesn't concern me in the slightest. But give me a level that I consider too dark and I'm up in arms. On the other hand, DJ has recently defended one of the darkest levels ever released. With all the levels out there that are free to the consuming public, there's something to please everyone. In the end, it all comes down to a matter of taste. Chacun a son goût.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Mulf » 24 Mar 2017 21:11

DJ Full wrote:
23 Mar 2017 04:39
If I follow any rule, there's always a reason.
Yeah, I'm not even going into a discussion of what constitutes a rule 'rooted in tradition' or even "natural", that would be becoming too silly. :bobby: However, no matter how you rationalise it, it's still a set of rules that you arbitrarily impose on the games you play—which, as I said, is fine by me, suum cuique and all that. I draw the line when you try to impose your rules on all the rest of us as the only way, the only 'natural' way or the only way 'sanctioned by tradition'. In practice that means, if and when you review my level, rate it down all the way to hell and back if you must; just give your reasons for you doing so. Name the criteria by which you judge. That is all.
I don't pretend anything. You can play any way you want, that's your choice. But being able to choose is what defines a good game, so it's exactly what you shouldn't deny your players. They should choose to keep health or lose it. To use all weapons or just pistols. To find all secrets or none. If you take health by force, the choice is denied. This is the main, most important reason why it feels wrong and is so hard to live with.
A game is defined by its rules; rules deny you some choices and allow others. You're literally asking for a game that has no rules. Your opinion is invalid. But that is not what you mean, right? You want me (all builders, in fact) to conform to your specific set of rules. Alas! I do not feel obliged to humour your quirks. Because that's what it is: a quirk, or a pet peeve if you like, whether or not it is the result of a metaphysical disquisition on freedom of choice. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and swallow a medipack...or not. Your choice!
I hear this a lot. "Why do you complain if it was in the original game." This point was used to justify repeating the most severe mistakes by Core, while being in the original game doesn't mean they were the right move...
Oh, I quite agree. I do most certainly not consider the official levels sacrosanct; you should hear me rant about the TR4 Giza levels someday. I understand you're not not particularly enamoured with TR3 Tinnos, that's something we can agree on too. :D And yet, again: What you declare ex cathedra an "error", other people might not. And the other way round; as Dr. Phil said above, il faut de tout pour faire un monde. :comfort:

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by DJ Full » 25 Mar 2017 02:14

Mulf wrote:
24 Mar 2017 21:11
I'm not even going into a discussion of what constitutes a rule 'rooted in tradition' or even "natural", that would be becoming too silly. :bobby:
I think discussing THAT could actually lead us somewhere.

that's what it is: a quirk, or a pet peeve if you like, whether or not it is the result of a metaphysical disquisition on freedom of choice (..) when you review my level, rate it down all the way to hell and back if you must; just give your reasons
The same reasons the origin of which you didn't want to discuss. So do they matter for you or not? Are they valid to you or not? I'm trying very hard to understand how the Mulf logic works but despite of spending three nights on analyzing your speech, I seem unable to. I guess those walkthru updates would be submitted if I spent this time on them... :D

A game is defined by its rules; rules deny you some choices and allow others. You're literally asking for a game that has no rules.
No, the rules of our engine is what I had to accept, including the narrow choice it gives. I only prefer when a builder doesn't further reduce this choice.

Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and swallow a medipack...or not. Your choice!
Agreed. But can't you see you're providing a cure for a misery you caused yourself? Compare this to taking a medikit after a player's mistake, when a player can also reload and try better - and you see the choice in the latter scenario is wider. It's not a "pet peeve", it's math.

You want me (all builders, in fact) to conform to your specific set of rules. (..) you declare ex cathedra an "error"
You keep reading what I never said. Not the very first time I see a reviewer write few words and a builder imagines a whole Proust novel betwen the lines. But I just write what I think.

Phil wrote:
23 Mar 2017 17:36
DJ has recently defended one of the darkest levels ever released.
To be precise, I only defended it because it made sense and looked fine on my monitor. If the game was just dark without any reason, I would be the first-line attacker and the author would probably suffer from crippling depression by this day. This is because my ONLY pet peeve is in-game nonsense and every other complaint originates from that.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Mulf » 26 Mar 2017 02:12

DJ Full wrote:
25 Mar 2017 02:14
Agreed. But can't you see you're providing a cure for a misery you caused yourself?
Oh, but I can. And I have no qualms about it whatsoever! :D
You keep reading what I never said. Not the very first time I see a reviewer write few words and a builder imagines a whole Proust novel betwen the lines. But I just write what I think.
You very clearly said Core committed an "error". No imagination required.
The same reasons the origin of which you didn't want to discuss. So do they matter for you or not? Are they valid to you or not?
They are immaterial to the discussion for me, although they are obviously not for you. So, since we can't agree on the terms of of the discussion, we'll have to agree to disagree. :)

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Dutchy » 26 Mar 2017 09:14

Please stop this you two, just agree to disagree :beatnik:

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by Phil » 26 Mar 2017 12:49

Aw, let 'em be. It's fun to watch, like a tennis match.

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Re: Walkthrough Small Talk, thread #2

Post by DJ Full » 26 Mar 2017 19:12

Mulf wrote:
26 Mar 2017 02:12
You very clearly said Core committed an "error".
But it wasn't "ex cathedra". It was based on what I said before.
They are immaterial to the discussion for me, although they are obviously not for you. So, since we can't agree on the terms of of the discussion, we'll have to agree to disagree.
Yes let's ignore it instead of finding out why it matters for me and doesn't for you.

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