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Fan Mission: The Ravine by Spoonman (17/04/2017)


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#1 level

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 02:15 AM

*
POPULAR

Mission Name: The Ravine
Author: Spoonman
Build time: 8 months.
Version: 1.00
Released: 17/04/2017

Type: Underground
Size: Large
Completion time: 1-2 hours.
Difficulty settings: Higher difficulties require you to find more loot.

Known issues:

This mission was not beta-tested.
Some areas of the mission can get noticeable drops in framerate.

Special thanks to:
Grayman for his minecart and tracks models from "Somewhere Above the City"

Gigagooga for his custom ambient sounds (thanks to Melan for recommending them to me)

Download links:
http://www.mediafire...9n1e/ravine.pk4



#2 hanmin

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 05:22 AM

Congrats and Thanks. This is pretty impressive and big.

 

I've just had some first impressions, got lost and orientation seem to come slow.

 

It seems to be generally pretty dark and I had to tweak with my gamma.

 

First Question:

 

Spoiler


#3 Bikerdude

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 05:40 AM

Known issues:

This mission was not beta-tested.
Some areas of the mission can get noticeable drops in framerate.

With respect, you need to get the mission beta tested before releasing it publicly.

 

Why not change the title of the post to beta testing required and we can give you and anyone that needs it access to the bets testing section.



#4 Marbrien

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 06:44 AM

With respect, you need to get the mission beta tested before releasing it publicly.

 

Why not change the title of the post to beta testing required and we can give you and anyone that needs it access to the bets testing section.

 

Which is also, I assume, why the mission is not yet appearing for download in the New Mission part of TDM.


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#5 grayman

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 07:47 AM

What Biker said.



#6 Bikerdude

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 08:21 AM

Which is also, I assume, why the mission is not yet appearing for download in the New Mission part of TDM.

If you appreciate honesty then, yes. The preferred method of releasing a mission is as follow's -

  1. Get the missing to beta level or alpha with caveats.
  2. Post a call out asking for beta testers (this is what this thread should have been, I can still move the thread to the best testing section if required)
  3. Once the mission has been through 2-3 testing cycles do a final sanity check.
  4. then post an announcement thread in the mission section.

Either reply here or drop me a PM, Im happy to help.



#7 brethren

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 09:04 AM

A little baffling why someone would put so much work into a mission and then not have it beta tested.  Especially when there's so many people here in the community willing to do it.


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#8 grayman

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 10:55 AM

The downside to not beta testing before release is that players expect a polished mission, and we have piles of experience showing that beta-ready missions still need a fair amount of love, whether you're an experienced mapper or not.


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#9 nbohr1more

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 11:55 AM

Honestly, I don't think there's anything wrong with releasing a mission at the forums without beta testing.
We just won't host it in the mission down-loader until it's proven to be playable above some minimum standard.

We really have far too few beta testers compared to other projects. Big Source mods have 50 to 100 players working
on their betas whereas we usually have 3 to 4. It wouldn't hurt to have a thread go from a Beta thread to a Release
thread in that case, as long as the author is upfront about the condition of the release.
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Please visit TDM's IndieDB site and help promote the mod:

http://www.indiedb.c...ds/the-dark-mod

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#10 Melan

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 11:59 AM

I must say, while betatesting is good practice, I was one of the testers for Full Moon Fever, and it was basically flawless outside some really small quibbles.  B)

 

Great to see you back!


Come the time of peril, did the ground gape, and did the dead rest unquiet 'gainst us. Our bands of iron and hammers of stone prevailed not, and some did doubt the Builder's plan. But the seals held strong, and the few did triumph, and the doubters were lain into the foundations of the new sanctum. -- Collected letters of the Smith-in-Exile, Civitas Approved

#11 Bikerdude

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 02:09 PM

Downloading now..



#12 montag

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 03:16 PM

All I can say is wow! Spoonman, you have created something really great here! Two hours in, and although I have my loot goal, I am nowhere near finished with this. Just wow.

 

Edited to fix grammar. P.S. I misspelled grammar, lol.


Edited by montag, 17 April 2017 - 09:07 PM.


#13 Melan

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 03:28 PM

So far, very few bugs, and no game-breaking ones. Still not finished. However... this mission is something else. Go play it, and if you can, go play it without spoilers.  :D


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Come the time of peril, did the ground gape, and did the dead rest unquiet 'gainst us. Our bands of iron and hammers of stone prevailed not, and some did doubt the Builder's plan. But the seals held strong, and the few did triumph, and the doubters were lain into the foundations of the new sanctum. -- Collected letters of the Smith-in-Exile, Civitas Approved

#14 Ladro

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 06:20 PM

The size it's really massive, and I like snowie FM, congrats!



#15 MayheM

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 06:26 PM

Congratulations! I haven't played it yet but i am gonna try it soon.



#16 kin

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 12:34 AM

Huge mission. I think i am lost.

Spoiler



#17 NeonsStyle

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 02:18 AM

It needs beta testing before releasing, even when you're certain there's no problems. With a quick look, it's very dark. I had to turn the gamma up quite a bit to be able to see anything. Looks wicked though. :)


Edited by NeonsStyle, 18 April 2017 - 02:19 AM.


#18 Moonbo

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 12:45 PM

I gotta say, this is about 100% the opposite of the type of level I like to play - sprawling high-stress interconnected level that's easy to get lost in with little story, but there parts that were really clever.

 

Spoiler

But you should walk having internal dignity. Be a wonderful person who can dance pleasantly to the rhythm of the universe.
-Sun Myung Moon


My work blog: gfleisher.blogspot.com

#19 level

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 12:48 PM


Spoiler

 

It's tricky but you can make the jump and get to it without taking any damage, or you could shoot a broadhead at it or at the skeleton and hope it falls down (pretty hard too).

 

Huge mission. I think i am lost.

Spoiler

 

The general idea is to keep going up.

 

The labyrinthine design and the low ambient light (you have a lantern) were conscious design decisions.



#20 Melan

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 03:17 PM

Here is my (spoiler-free) review I posted on TTLG:

The Ravine by Spoonman. 
 
You are about to embark on an adventure into a place both wonderful and strange, and you will go through the looking glass a few times before it ends. If this description appeals to you, The Ravine will be your mission. This is a hard mission to write about without spoiling things, and I won’t (not even in screenshots). Let’s just stick to a general impression. 
 
The Ravine draws from that aspect of The Dark Project which has been least often captured in fan missions: a journey into an irrational and dangerous world which defies conventional explanation, but which makes sense as a dream, a collection of strange impressions. The nature of mysteries like this is that they are only effective as long as they aren’t given a rationale, and they lose their power once they are completely figured out. This mission, rather smartly, never gives you that key. There are no readables, no conventional storytelling and no fully built framework to place your experiences. It just is, like a puzzle that has no solution, but could have multiple guesses. Its closest parallel is Gems of Provenance, although it is very different.
 
The Ravine is a large, complex level that has countless pathways through it, and several hidden places (I got 2600 out of more than 4000 loot). There is verticality, there is horizontality, and there are all kinds of interconnections. The starting area alone would make a small level, but it doesn’t stop there. It is vast; it is also dark. Completely dark except for light sources and your trusty lantern. The lantern becomes invaluable in your exploration, but it also draws attention to you, as it should. This is a proper tradeoff and a fun gameplay element. There are places where rope arrows would come in handy, but the mission is sadistic enough not to give you any, ever. After a more quiet beginning, the AI patrols are numerous and make for a proper challenge.
 
Graphically, it is on the less detailed side, and the zero ambient does sometimes look rough with the stencil shadows. But it is never ugly, it is thematically consistent, and very often does ingenious things with simple architecture. The soundscape is very impressive – properly menacing, mysterious, using sound cues to both guide and disorient you.
 
All in all, this mission is odd, imaginative, and a whole lot of fun. Don’t spoil yourself – just play.
 
tumblr_oomg4v85QQ1rxmn3vo1_1280.jpg
tumblr_oomg4v85QQ1rxmn3vo2_1280.jpg
tumblr_oomg4v85QQ1rxmn3vo3_1280.jpg
tumblr_oomg4v85QQ1rxmn3vo4_1280.jpg

 

 


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Come the time of peril, did the ground gape, and did the dead rest unquiet 'gainst us. Our bands of iron and hammers of stone prevailed not, and some did doubt the Builder's plan. But the seals held strong, and the few did triumph, and the doubters were lain into the foundations of the new sanctum. -- Collected letters of the Smith-in-Exile, Civitas Approved

#21 level

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 03:43 PM

Thanks for the review, Melan!

 

You are right, gems of provenance is one of my favorite missions to come in recent years and together with ruins of originia, was a huge inspiration in making this.

 

Also, there are actually some rope arrows in the mission.


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#22 LordSoth

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 04:30 PM

Linky on taffers

 

http://www.tafferspa...kmod/ravine.zip


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#23 brethren

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 08:10 AM

Probably time to get this into the in-game downloader, for taffers like me who only use that.  I think if there were any massive, game breaking bugs, they would have shown up by now.


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#24 nbohr1more

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 08:17 AM

If Biker doesn't get to it before me, I'll do that tonight (if I don't get tied-up with family stuff).


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Please visit TDM's IndieDB site and help promote the mod:

http://www.indiedb.c...ds/the-dark-mod

(Yeah, shameless promotion... but traffic is traffic folks...)

#25 Marbrien

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 08:51 AM

I just completed this on Medium.  Very enjoyable mission, and I didn't find anything that seemed like a bug. 

 

The building, when you find it, gets weirder the higher up you go.  Oh, and there's an unexpected guest appearance by Ned Kelly.


Edited by Marbrien, 20 April 2017 - 10:50 AM.





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